Monthly Archives: August 2013

Look What They Done to My Blog, Ma

When The Curmudgeon vacations he does so without any connection to the electronic world, so when he found himself with brief access to a computer while away, he quickly checked his email and then took a peek at his blog, just to make sure it was still there.

And got quite a surprise.

When he opened the blog, he discovered something he had never seen before:  ads!

He had no idea.  When he checks on his own computer at home to see if his latest pearl of wisdom has posted properly, there’s nary a sign of an ad.

To offer a little background, when you sign up for a free blog from WordPress, the host of The Four-Eyed Curmudgeon, it tells you, right there in black and white, that at some point it might put ads on your blog.  It also offers you the option of paying a fee – The Curmudgeon doesn’t remember the amount but does recall thinking that it wasn’t very much – to prevent ads from appearing on your blog.

The Curmudgeon dismissed this as a concern because he never expected to have enough readers for anyone to think it might be worthwhile to buy ad space on his little blog.  He also figured that in the unlikely event that the WordPress powers-that-be thought it was worth putting ads on his blog, his attempt to pay the fee to block them would actually launch a process through which the two parties – the blogger and the blog host – negotiated a price for ad placement.  Believe it or not, some bloggers out there make a living doing this…doing this…well, doing this crap.

But nothing has happened over the past two years to suggest that anyone would find any value in advertising in this particular space.  When people ask The Curmudgeon how many people view his blog and he tells them, they inevitably laugh and say something along the lines of “Then why do you bother?”

But for whatever reason, someone at WordPress has decided that placing ads on this blog makes business sense.  The Curmudgeon guesses that ad buyers are promised a certain number of looks per month and that WordPress places their ads on numerous blogs, cobbling together ten or twenty or thirty viewers here and there until it amounts to the number of eyeballs promised.

The Curmudgeon wants his readers to know that he’s not getting any money from these ads.  Not a dime.

Damn.

In addition, while from the one ad he saw he suspects the ads are neither offensive nor intrusive, if readers find them to be objectionable, please feel free to add a comment to this entry or contact The Curmudgeon directly at the email address in the “About the Four-Eyed Curmudgeon” item in the left-hand margin of the blog’s home page.  If enough readers object, he’ll arrange to have the ads removed.

Thanks for your indulgence and thanks, as always, for reading!

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Gone Fishing

Even curmudgeons need a break once in a while, and The Curmudgeon is taking one now:  two weeks at the beach, where he’ll try not to get in trouble again.

fishingSee you again on Monday, August 20.

The Curmudgeon Video of the Week: Parody

Perhaps no show in the history of television has jumped the proverbial shark as frequently as Grey’s Anatomy.  If for no other reason, this makes Grey’s excellent fodder for parody – a form of humor of which The Curmudgeon is especially fond.  See such a parody here – and shame on you if you don’t recognize all of the characters.

They All Look Alike to Her

While sitting in a hotel lobby recently, awaiting the start of a work-related function, another group’s meeting adjourned and among those departing was a man who went directly to the concierge desk to retrieve a bag he had checked prior to the meeting.  The concierge asked him his name.

“Rodriguez,” the man replied.

Another hotel employee was passing at just that moment and called out “Hey, are you related to that baseball player?”

This wasn’t offered tongue in cheek.  She was serious.

Negadelphia

The Curmudgeon believes it was radio sports talk show host Garry Cobb who christened the city of brotherly love “Negadelphia” for its overwhelming desire to eat its own.  In the past, The Curmudgeon wrote about how one of the ways this negativity manifests itself is in the comments people post at the end of newspaper articles on the web sites of the Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News.

No matter what the subject of the article, people will find a negative twist to add to it.  Often, those twists are of a racial nature, posted by white people who have left the city and are eager to point out that the city’s gone downhill in their absence.

With this in mind, The Curmudgeon decided to collect some of these negative comments to share with his readers.  He decided to limit the articles from which he sampled comments mostly to soft or at least softer news and to limit this inquiry to a single one-week period and not select any articles that would focus on obvious objects of public displeasure like the mayor, the governor, and the President.

The following are examples he found.  Brace yourselves, readers:  it ain’t pretty.

One of the most appealing public spaces in Philadelphia is the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, designed in the 1920s and modeled after the Champs-Elysees in Paris.  All sorts of events are held there and hundreds of thousands of people participate in them.  The space is even nicer when there’s no event and people can just wander around, people-watch, sit on the grass, and enjoy the day.  To enhance the visitor experience, the city announced that it intended to rope off a section of the parkway for a month and build a temporary beach and boardwalk.  Some Inquirer readers thought that might not be such a good idea.  [Note:  The Curmudgeon did not edit these direct quotes for spelling, grammar, punctuation, accuracy, or egregiously bad taste.]

how about a more accurate and realistic picture of what that would look like? a mugging or wilding activity in progress, soiled homeless buried in the sandbox, crack pipes and hypos scattered around, trashy music booming out and politically connected ‘food’ trucks selling bean pies and roasted grasshoppers

Every Sunday the Inquirer published a puff piece about an area town.  On June 30, it was about Gloucester Township, a mostly working-class town on the New Jersey side of the river.

Out in the boring suburbs where the only thing you can do for fun is ride to Walmart or a mall. If you don’t have a car to contribute to polluting the air you are up a creek. Nothing else to do except maybe poke sticks at polliwogs in the stream outback, put crayfish in jelly jars or hang out at the local 7-Eleven down the street smoking cigarettes and sipping Slurpees. The people out there have no cultural diversity whatsoever and no way to become sophisticated, unless they have a friend in the city to visit. Suburbs are fine for a weekend but living out there is like a desert.

A more serious article, but a positive one, reported that Philadelphia – a city with a real problem of a rising murder rate in recent years – is on track to have its lowest number of murders in forty-five years.  Hard to argue with good news like that, right?  Well, some Philadelphians certainly found a way.

When is a murder not really a murder? When it is in Philly and Ramsey [note:  the city’s police commissioner] says it isn’t. That’s why the numbers are down. Just like the fire deaths, if you make it to the hospital alive, whether you die or not, its not a fire death or murder.

This is an anomaly, not a trend. Six months of downward numbers isn’t proof of anything. Not a single socio-economic factor or police policy has changed in this city to vanquish violent crime and all that causes it. The PPD had better prepare itself for the onslaught of murders to follow and the criticism when it comes.

homicides are down because people fear for their lives and are imprisoned in their homes….thus not many people out at night to shoot…

Over the 4th of July holiday weekend they’re will be a crime wave of homicides to more than make up for the lack of homicides. Lets see the articles of crime wave hits Philthydelphia then. This rag can’t let sleeping dogs lie.

The archdiocese of Philadelphia has been closing Catholic schools left and right in the face of declining enrollment, so a report that one individual Catholic high school had received a donation of $1 million from an unidentified donor should have been good news, right?   Trust a Negadelphian to find a way to snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory.

10% Salary 10% Maintenence 10% His Holiness 70% Out of court settlements

FRIGGIN DISGRACE!!! THIS SCHOOL IS ABOUT 95% NON CATHOLIC!!! WHERE WAS THE MONEY FOR NORTH CATHOLIC AND CARDINAL DOUGHERTY??? SCUMBAGS AT 222!!! [Note:  a reference to the address of the archdiocese headquarters.] CREEPOS

Sorry to say when the High Schools were being closed and the parents and pupils begged and scraped to raise money to keep them open West Catholic did nothing at all the only reason the Archdiocese kept it open was because it was manley minority and in fact non catholic students this school should have been closed….but what can you say…

On Tuesday, July 2, the Inquirer published a puff piece about a Philadelphia-area teenager who was competing on the TV Food Network program Chopped.  Naturally, a few readers couldn’t let such a feel-good story pass without some distinctly feel-bad comments.

 The judges will vote him off quick. They will act smarmy and tell him he has a great future, but a future they will arrest because they don’t want to see someone so young that is more talented than they were at his age getting his “in” so early on.

I am sick of chopped and the possums that sit on the judging panel with their fat torsos and wide loads hidden from the cameras. Ever see one of the judges get up? Their bodies are trifling. The bald one claims he was a cage boxer. Looks like humpty-dumpty to me. Alex B. is a huge couch potato. In fact, not a one has a decent body at all.

Rapper Kanye West has a new CD, and a new web site that asks performers to write reviews of the work of other performers asked rock’n’roll almost-legend Lou Reed to review it.  Reed loved it – but some readers didn’t care for Reed’s read of Kanye.

kanye is a punkass.. ive never seen a face that ive had a stronger desire to punch.. i hope i never meet him – i might not be able to resist myself.

Lou Reed is high on drugs, what – with a new liver and all. this foo dont know what he is doing. Kanye is lame !

kayne is corny as hell I don’t know how he even became a star. if I were a producer and he came to me with the trash he comes up with; i’d have one word…..SECURITY………………..

Lou Reed once put out an album entitled “Metal Machine Music”, a total affront to anyone who cares about music, and a complete insult to whoever considered themselves his fan (I am not sure he had more than one). Beyond awful noise, the last groove of the record was a continuous loop, so it would annoy forever. The whole thing was putrid. Anyone who could be that contemptuous of the public doesn’t deserve to be listened to at any time on any topic by anyone.

A July 4 article about the security precautions the city of Philadelphia was taking for various Independence Day events predictably brought out the haters.

Security is Enhanced! With all of the terrorism in Philly they must be sending a large cadre of cops to the ghetto to stop the terrorists. Wait, the terrorists are Philadelphia citizens killing each other. Nobody cares about that.

Another cost to taxpayers of welfare policies that breed irresponsible hoodlums: excess security at civic events that used to be safe family affairs. And the cost keeps rising…

Well here’s a couple of tips; anyone who is or appears to be middle eastern; keep them out, the violent black male/female; keep them out. Of course this won’t happen but lets be real who are the terrorist and trouble makers. Last years shooting involved all black males.

The issue, blkmd, is black felonies occur every day in every city at staggering frequencies. For every Oklahoma, there are thousands — or perhaps tens of thousands — of brutal black crimes. How about denouncing the blacks in the city that are ruining it? That will be a good start.

A fellow named Mike Schmidt, who played baseball for the Philadelphia Phillies and is in the baseball hall of fame, once described playing in Philadelphia as “the thrill of winning a game at night and the agony of reading about it the next morning.”  Something like that happened on July 5.  Every year the city of Philadelphia puts together an enormous 4th of July music and fireworks extravaganza.  This year’s performers included The Roots, John Mayer, rapper Ne-Yo, Jill Scott, rocker Grace Potter, country singer Hunter Hayes – a diverse array with a little something for everyone.  Needless to say, the next morning, many of the critics – er, Inquirer readers – were not happy.

According to twitter, this event was a disaster.

I’ll wait for the return of the Beach Boys. Those were the days! The spoken word music (aka Rap) gives me a headache.

In Europe the taste in music is much better.

The show was racially biased as it was geared toward a black audience.

There was violence, guns and melee that were never reported here. There was a stampede at the end.

Philly should take note of the show D.C. put on last night! Class act from start to finish. Philly once again shows it’s a second-rate city.

Between the drugs, the guns, and the inevitable stampede (yes, like cattle only MUCH uglier) this was a trashy event with a bunch of entertainers no one would pay to hear. Has anyone ever paid to hear The Roots? The police loiter around and really add nothing to the safety of the event. How about some checkpoints, so security, and some drug confiscation.

New Jersey’s beaches and beach towns were hard hit by Hurricane Sandy.  A poll commissioned shortly after the storm found that fifty percent of respondents were under the impression that the entire Atlantic City boardwalk was destroyed by the storm.  The truth:  only a few hundred feet of boardwalk had been destroyed and that area had already been targeted for demolition.  Most of the Jersey shore has now been rebuilt, but the state faced a major problem:  how to convey this message to the people who traditionally fuel the summer tourism season that is vital to the state’s economy.  The answer:  a $45 million marketing campaign.  Needless to say, many Philadelphia Inquirer readers were not pleased to read about this.

 Why would I waste my hard earned money vacationing at the Jersey Slum, just spent 9 days in Southern California with my girlfriend, flew into San Francisco jumped in the Ford Mustang convertible I rented, drove the coast highway to Santa Monica L.A. total cost, 5600.00$. The PO man vacation hole the Jersey slum.

We now live in a socialist country where a fat goombah, gubment crony like christie can actually be considered “conservative”, while being obese. Conservatives like things to be LEAN AND MEAN. Christie is a conservative in a place (NJ) where the eddy munster lookin mafia weasels run everything. Yaaay, go to the over crowded GHETTO shore and get skin cancer. Forward!

Hmm, HUD funded this annoying ad campaign, huh? Political payback for that hug before the election I guess.

Why was $25 million deficit dollars spent on television commercials by the federal government? This is waste and corruption, pure and simple.

This shows you how stupid New jersey and New Jersians are. They over exaggerated the the damage of the measly category 1 hurricane and everybody thought the state was destroyed. After they got their handouts from federal taxpayers, all of a sudden NJ is back and ready for the summer? NJ is pathetic, fulled with fools.

Stronger than the storm? They had to suck the FEDS dry for money and are still sucking them dry. They are rebuilding in areas where they have no business living again and will suck us dry when the next act of nature hits their godforsaken state. NJ is a bunch of idiots with one big fat one leading them.

There are times, when he is writing this blog, when The Curmudgeon questions whether his approach isn’t too negative, whether he should make more of an effort to look on the bright side of things.  Is he being too hard on people, too critical, too, well, too curmudgeonly?  This can occasionally result in a period of extended navel-gazing, but then, he goes to his local newspapers’ web sites, checks out the comments at the ends of the articles, and reaches the happy conclusion that curmudgeonliness is relative and that in some respects, he is an absolute ray of sunshine.

It is a comforting thought even if it is tinged with just a smidgeon of self-delusion.