Showing posts with label kc blog. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kc blog. Show all posts

Monday, August 24, 2009

Real change in America

Obama's platform to get elected to the presidency was all about needing change in America. One place I believe needs the most revamping is the American prison system. Recently in the news California announced an early release of prisoners due to not enough money to keep them in jail. I was disgusted by the fact that letting them out to commit more crimes was the only solution the Govenator could come up with so I have made a list of alternatives that could save governments a fortune.

First we'll start by reducing the three square meals a day down to two meals and a sensible snack. It seems to work for all the dieters in the world, and some of these prisoners could use to lose a few pounds. The prisons would also be responsible for growing their own food supply to eliminate the cost tax payers are paying to feed wrong doers. You want to eat, you have to earn it through hard labor out in the bean fields and orchards.

Further savings can be found by eliminating luxury items like cable television and expensive weight bench equipment. TV time will now be replaced by reading and creative arts to expand the mind instead of bulking up all that braun. Aerobics and yoga will be used to stay healthy and relaxation techniques will help reduce the levels of anger in our prisons.

The final steps to reduce cost may be a bit hard for some to swallow, but hear me out before you decide. The biggest problem we have is overcrowded facilities and this could be resolved if we would stop housing death row inmates for years on end. With the advances in science and DNA proven cases, there should be very little doubt of a persons guilt, therefore a death sentence equals automatic death penalty. No more years of appeals cases, no more lawyers pulling strings. After sentencing you get one year to prove your innocence and if nothing is found after that time, then get in the chair because your ride is over. This policy should also apply to receivers of multiple life sentences and life without parolers. If you are never going to see the light of day again for the crimes you have commited than that's it for you. Capital crimes should result in the loss of the right to be a part of society. Act like a dangerous animal and get put down like a dangerous animal, quick and painless.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Blondie in Concert - Kansas City Crossroads at Grinders

Blondie in Concert at the Crossroads at Grinders this Tuesday night -

Tuesday, August 18th

Crossroads at Grinders, 417 E
18th St., Kansas City, Mo.


Tickets - 816-472-5454

Many don't know this but Blondie's Debbie Harry was once a Playboy Bunny before she and guitarist (and romantic interest) Chris Stein formed Blondie in 1975.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Generation TEXT

I've got the name for the new generation, "Generation TEXT". These kids are out of control - every tween, teen and college kid in the universe has their head down all day long tapping on their little buttons. Go to the mall and take a look for yourself, the kids are walking and texting - my favorite scenario is the parents walking ahead with the pre-teen daughter lagging several paces behind - texting away. This can't be a good thing, these Generation Texters, it just doesn't look right - what will the repercussions be?

I remember when I forgot how to spell - it was the day they invented the "spell checker" on my AOL email account. I literally forgot how to spell - and it gets worse every day. I don't know if this really affects my life in any way, as long as I'm never in a situation where I have to write an actual LETTER to someone on a piece of paper. My experience with the spell checker, and the fact that it has dumbed down my spelling skills, may compare directly to the long term effects that texting will have on these kids.

Starting with the obvious, these kids have zero face to face communication skills. When is the last time you got a firm handshake with full eye contact from one of these Generation Texters? Another thing I have noticed is that the generation texters have very little sense of humor. They don't speak or write creatively, they are extremely bland and quite boring, honestly. Talking with their head down, answering your questions in the shortest and softest responses possible. They're vanilla children, that's what they are.

Again, I don't know if this will affect their chances of getting good jobs etc. because in another 10 years, the world will be run by Generation Texters, so the supervisors will have poor communication skills and no sense of humor as well. So it might all work out just like the fact that I don't see myself having to hand write a letter on a piece of paper in the near future.

Here are a few facts on the Generation Texters:

Generation Texters send an average of 440 texts per week. This amounts to about 4 texts per hour that they are AWAKE.

Generation Texters have overwhelmed the school systems. Schools have just given up on trying to stop the texting. It simply can't be done. See the recent Kansas City Star article for more info on what the schools have attempted to do to stop the texting. The kids are using texts to cheat on tests.

Generation Texters are at risk for arthritis of the thumb. This condition, known as texting tenosynovitis, is an inflammation of the tendons in the thumb caused by text messaging. There is only two reported case of this, and a school-aged child in Singapore is the first one. As for the second aforementioned New Zealand student, she apparently texts 100 messages per day.

Most of the parents that I have asked say that they tried to wait until their children were at least 16 years old before getting them a cell phone, but the fact was that they became social outcasts without the Holy texting ability. The other kids just stopped talking to them because they were so far out of the loop. Most parents break down and buy their kid a cell phone around age 12.

There is a great book written by Dr. Michael Osit about Generation TEXT - check out the book here:

Generation Text: Raising Well Adjusted Kids In An Age Of Instant Everything

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Kansas City Demographics

Kansas City Demographics:

Population (Jackson County) - 451,572

Males - 217981 (48.3%) | Females - 233591 (51.7%)

Median Resident Age - 34 | Median Household income - $42,000

Median House or Condo Value - $133,000 | Median Gross Rent - $633

Races in Kansas City:

* White Non-Hispanic (57.6%)
* Black (31.2%)
* Hispanic (6.9%)
* Other race (3.2%)
* Two or more races (2.4%)
* American Indian (1.2%)
* Vietnamese (0.7%)

(Total can be greater than 100% because Hispanics could be counted in other races)

Average Kansas City Murder / Homocide Rate (per year) - 102

Most popular religion - Catholicism (30%)

Unemployment Rate - 11.6%

Ancestries: German (15.4%), Irish (10.4%), English (8.0%), United States (5.8%), Italian (3.6%), French (2.1%)

* Never married: 32.5%
* Now married: 45.1%
* Separated: 2.7%
* Widowed: 6.6%
* Divorced: 13.1%

Kansas City nicknames or aliases (official or unofficial): Kansas City - BBQ Capital of the World, City of Fountains, Cowtown, Jazz Capital of the World, K.C, KCMO, Paris of the Plains

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Time Warner Cable's new "Turbo" Upgrade = SCAM

I'm sure that you've seen the irritating commercials for Time Warner Cable's new "Turbo" upgrade for their internet service. They claim that for an extra $25 per month (which is ghastly), you can increase the speed of your internet.

I'm sorry, but I'm going to have to call "bullshit" on this one.

I recently moved into a new home and since my choices are pretty limited as far as choosing a cable company (AT&T sucks, no internet if you go to Satellite) I signed up for Time Warner's basic internet and cable TV package.

For a few months, my internet speed was good. Then it recently started to mysteriously slow down. And this was a coincidence because at the same time my internet speed started to slow down, Time Warner came out with those internet "Turbo" upgrade commercials. Hmmmm...Very interesting.

Here's what I think - I don't believe that it's possible to "Turbo" your internet speed. I DO, however, think it's possible for Time Warner to "Slow Down" your internet speed from their end. This, in turn, causes the consumer to become frustrated with their internet speed, they see the commercial for the "Turbo" upgrade, and they take the bait and sign on for another $25 per month.

This is a SCAM, people, and I think it sucks.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Missouri Continues to Persecute Smokers

Unknown to most citizens of the state of Missouri, it's lawmakers passed legislation earlier this year to require Missouri retailers to sell a special type of cigarette beginning in 2011. The "Fire Safe Cigarette" is designed to burn out when the lit tobacco hits a treated part of the cigarette. In short, they are designed to burn out when the smoker quits puffing on the cigarette. The idea: to reduce the number of house fires caused by, get this, people falling asleep while smoking.

Falling asleep while smoking...really. The National Fire Protection Agency estimates this will save between 700 and 900 lives annually that are taken due to house fires caused by cigarettes. Which to my minds eye means that our governmental leaders have put 700 to 900 more idiots on the street that should be dead. Have you ever heard of Darwinism? Survival of the fittest? If you are so god damned stupid that you fall asleep with a cigarette lit, you probably should not be walking among normal people in the first place.

I am glad to hear that despite the fact that we are at war, our economy is in the crapper, and we have people going hungry and without housing right here in Kansas City our elected officials deem it necessary to worry about retards that don't have the sense god gave them to put a cigarette out before going to sleep. You have got to be kidding me. What's next? No one will be allowed to build with wood because they might get a splinter? Unreal!!

As if it isn't enough that you can't smoke anywhere in the city anymore, we are now being told what to smoke. I am not even going to mention some of the negative side-effects that have been related to these new "dumb ass" saving cigarettes. I am going to ask you to take action in two ways. One, contact your elected official and thank them for focusing on the important issues. Two, please go to the following website and sign the petition. The petition will also explain, in more detail, how stupid this is.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

DJ Jazzy Jeff at Kansas City Power and Light District

On Saturday, June 8, 2009, a concert performance in the “Living Room” of the Power & Light District by DJ Jazzy Jeff was cut short when Jeff refused to continue the performance. At issue is what occurred to precipitate Jeff cutting his performance short? Jeff has stated that he stopped his performance because he was told not to play rap. P & L District officials contend that the volume of the sound was damaging the sound system.

In order to determine what happened, HRD conducted interviews and reviewed statements from those directly involved. We have sought to conduct other interviews with those who were directly involved but have not been successful. Darren Zarter was interviewed. Zarter is the Event Production Coordinator for the P & L District. He was on the scene and in charge during the event. Zarter said that he was the person directly in contact with the performers during Jeff’s shortened set.

Zarter said that during the sound check before the show there were no problems. He said that shortly into Jeff’s set he began getting text messages about the sound. One of the messages was from Tad Kuhl, the P & L District’s AV person. He was being told that the sound was distorted. He said that Kuhl came in and told him that the sound had to be fixed “now.” He said that the system was “red lining,” meaning that the volume was getting to the level that could damage the system. Zarter said that the way the system was set up Jeff had control of the sound such that they could not override his controls. He said that Jeff’s master control volume level was on 10. Normally it should run around 7 or 8. He said that the MC microphone volume was all the way up. He said that even though the system had limiters – devices that help control extreme volume – they can only do so much in a situation such as this one where the DJ has some individual control. He said that he called Jeff’s stage manager Darnell (LNU) over. He told him that the volume was too loud and asked if he could have the volume turned down. He said that he called Darnell over a couple more times complaining about the sound but the problem persisted. He said that the final time he called Darnell over he told him that either they adjusted the sound or he would have to shut down the system. He said that Darnell stated, “How am I supposed to tell an artist to turn his music down.” He said that Darnell then went on stage and said something to Jeff. Jeff then said to the crowd, “I guess they don’t want our type of music here.” Zarter said that he never told Darnell or anyone else not to play rap. He said that he never spoke directly to Jeff or Skillz, Jeff’s front man. He only talked to Darnell. He said that to his knowledge no one else from the P & L District spoke directly to Jeff or Skillz.

Zarter said that when he first saw Skillz on the stage he did not know who he was or why he was there. He said that as he understood the contract only Jeff was supposed to be on stage. He said that he didn’t think that Skillz should have been on stage. He said that he asked Darnell who Skillz was and why he was there. He said that he never talked directly to Skillz. Zarter said that he did talk briefly to Z-Trip, the artist who preceded Jeff on stage. He said that he told Z-Trip not to play any vulgar music. He said that he never told Z-Trip not to play rap. Zarter said that the system was damaged. He said that 9 of the 12 high end drivers were damaged. He estimated the damage at $3,000. He said that two events were scheduled for the next day. They both went on using the damaged speakers.

Zarter is responsible for booking acts in the P & L District. He said that he had no problem with the music that Jeff was playing. He said that he knew pretty much what type of music Jeff played when he booked him. He said that this was not the first time they had problems with volume. He said usually the acts that pose problems are rock bands. For the most part they cooperate when asked to adjust the volume. He said that there was one band – Lights & Sirens – that they actually had to pull the plug on because they did not want to cooperate. Tad Kuhl was interviewed. He works for Entertainment Concepts Investors (ECI). He is a Technologist Specialist. He said that he is very familiar with the sound system in the “Living Room” of the P & L District because he helped design it. He said that he came on the property at around 11:30 p.m. He said that as soon as he heard the sound he could tell that the system was in “major distress.” He said that he could hear the distortion. He surmised that the source was being overpowered.

Kuhl said that the amplifier went into “clip” status. He said that about 30 seconds later the music stopped. He assumed this is when Jazzy Jeff left the stage. He said that he would not have allowed the performance to go on much longer because of potential damage to the equipment. He said that the only performer that he talked to directly was Masterkraft, who came on stage after Jeff. He said that he told him how to adjust the sound beforehand. Masterkraft followed the plan and had no problem. Kuhl said that six high end drivers were completely blown and 3 others were damaged. All nine had to be replaced. He said that the concerts that were done in the days immediately following had no high end.

Jim Watry was interviewed. Watry is the Operations Manager for ECI. ECI owns and operates several bars in the P & L District. He said that he was in the District when Jeff’s set started. He said that he could hear the distortion and that the speakers were too loud. He said that he texted Zarter to see if everything was OK. He said that he went down front where Zarter was. He said that he was with Zarter during one of his conversations with Darnell. He said that Zarter asked that the volume on the DJ’s controls be turned down. He said that while he was there no discussion took place about the type of music that was being played.

HRD has not been able to locate Darnell, who was the person from Jeff’s crew who had direct contact with P & L District staff. We contacted Jenni Weinman from Jeff’s staff in San Francisco. She in turn put us in touch with Lawrence Vavra who she said was Jeff’s manager. Vavra did not respond to attempts to contact him. We reviewed statements from Jeff’s camp from people who were present during the show.

Jeff said that he was kicked off stage for playing hip-hop. He said that his road manager (presumably Darnell) came up to him and said that they were having problems with the music that he was playing. He said that after three more songs the road manager came back and said that he had to kick Skillz off the stage, change the format of the music or quit. He said that he was told to play Top 40. He said that at that point he stopped. He said that one of the P & L District officials asked him to go back on but without Skillz. He refused. Skillz was the MC for Jeff. He said that the sound was never an issue. He said that they were never told to turn the music down. He said that after he was told what was happening he announced to the crowd that they had to stop because they didn’t want rap played there. He said that after that he was escorted off the property.

Z-Trip, the performer who went on before Jeff issued a statement. He said that while doing his sound check, he was asked not to play any rap music. He said that hip-hop is prevalent in his repertoire and he proceeded with his set as planned. There were no problems during his set. He said that he watched Jeff go on stage immediately following him. He said that while he was standing on the stage, he saw Jeff’s tour manager talking to Jeff about what he assumed were complaints the District had about the music he was playing. To complete this investigation, HRD sought to talk to the people from the Barcardi Tour who had direct contact with the P & L District personnel. Specifically, we have tried to set up interviews with Darnell, Jeff’s road manager, and Z Trip, both of whom we know talked directly to District staff. We left messages for Juliana Plotkin of Ink Tank in Los Angeles, Z-Trip’s publicist, in efforts to contact him.

At this point in time HRD can not conclusively say what happened that caused DJ Jazzy Jeff to leave the stage during his show. Obviously the stories from the two sides are diametrically opposed. From the P & L District’s perspective, they have submitted invoices for repairs of the damage purportedly done to their speakers. The invoices total less than $3000. From the Barcardi Tour participants’ perspective, two things bear noting. Although Zarter stated that he did not talk directly to Skillz, he did state in his interview that he was not happy about him being on stage. He said that this was due to Skillz not being part of the agreement between the District and the Barcardi Tour. He said that he did question Jeff’s stage manager as to why Skillz was on stage. Keeping in mind that Skillz said that he was told that Jeff could go back on without him, there is a distinct possibility that Zarter’s displeasure with Skillz being on stage may have been conveyed to him. Z-Trip stated that he was told not to play rap by a P & L District official. Zarter noted that he did discuss what to play with Z Trip but stated that he only told Z-Trip not to play any vulgar music. Zarter stated that the District has a policy that no vulgar music is to be played at the outside venue. It is conceivable that the message that Z-Trip got from the conversation was that he was not to play any rap. It should be noted that Z-Trip went on with his set as he had originally planned, which included rap, and there were no incidents with him.

Kansas City News

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Missouri Gas Energy - Aren't Monopolies Illegal?

Call me crazy - and I'm sure that you're right - but didn't we make monopolies illegal back in the Pendergast days? Is there another company out there that provides gas energy to Missouri homes other than Missouri Gas Energy? I don't think there is.

I brought this up because recently we got a "comment card" from Missouri Gas Energy asking us a few questions. "How satisfied are you with your service?", and "Does the pricing seem affordable?". My significant other filled out the form with "What friggin' choice do we have? Please tell us the name and contact information of your closest competition - I thought Monopolies were illegal?"

Although I'm certain that whoever processes these little comment cards doesn't even know the meaning of the word "monopoly", we still sent it in.

Can anyone explain how the utilities companies are NOT a monopoly?

Monday, August 3, 2009

Best Kansas City Golf Courses to Play when you SUCK

I speak from experience guys! Here are Kansas City's best golf courses to play when you totally SUCK at golf:

South Kansas City

Without a doubt, the best golf course to play in South Kansas City when you suck is Minor Park Golf Course. First of all there is ONE sand trap on the entire course. ONE. I've been in it several times - it's almost like a little bonus to be in the only sand trap on the course - all of your friends will laugh at you and point and say nice job dumb ass - you found the only trap on the course. The good news is, you get to bring your corona with you when you play out. Minor Park Golf Course is also very short, making walking a breeze, and the play is relatively fast even on Sundays. HINT: Don't park your car too close to the 9th green or you may not have a windshield when you get back.

North Kansas City

If you're up north - in which case I feel sorry for you to begin with - Zona Rosa is a joke - what are they trying to do, copy off of Johnson County? The streets and buildings might look like Johnson County but the people in the streets and buildings are still rubes from the sticks - but I digress...if you are stuck up north for some reason, a great place to play is Hodge Park. Although there are two golf courses up north that are rated higher in Tiffany Greens (not a bad course but it is somewhat of a treeless ranch) and Shoal Creek (which is a TOTAL treeless ranch), Hodge Park is a MUCH better course than either Tiffany Greens or Shoal Creek - especially suck.

Hodge Park is similar to it's southern counter-part Minor Park in that it is a nice little well-kept course that is short and relatively free of sand and water. There is a lot of water up there - but it is off in the distance and makes great scenery.

Olathe / Johnson County

If you are not a wealthy member of one of Johnson County's numerous country clubs, then I suggest you look at playing The Overland Park Golf Course. Be sure and make a tee time out there or you will be screwed son. The good news is, some of the best Kansas City Restaurants are in that area so at least you can catch a good meal.


If you're lucky enough to get through Leawood without getting pulled over, I suggest Deer Creek golf course. I am a member at Deer Creek and I love this place. It has all of the country club feel without the country club snobs. A full bar, a great staff, and a fairly easy - no wait a minute - this course isn't easy at all! This course is hard as hell! Indeed, do not go to Deer Creek expecting to put up great numbers. No, my friends, pack a nice cooler of booze, bring someone that you enjoy talking to no matter what else is going on, and just enjoy not being at work. You WILL suck ass on this golf course - it is designed to make you realize just how bad a golfer you really are. Remember that day you shot a 78 at that one course? Not going to happen at Deer Creek. But the houses around the course are super sweet and the course is as close to a pro course as you will see in the city, and did I mention that they had a full bar?

WAY out South

If you're in the mood to play somewhere really weird, try playing a round at River Oaks Golf Course. Located in rural Grandview (I know, don't laugh yet, it gets better), River Oaks offers a lovely course that literally winds it's way through the ghetto. Your golf experience will be enhanced by lovely views of broken down basketball hoops, over-sized bbq grills, a roadside park, and even the occasional ghetto resident (who knows nothing about golf) will stroll out onto the fairway with their kids or their dog. You gotta see this place to believe it.


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