Archive for December, 2012

EXACTLY HOW SHOULD A PERSON OF ANY RACE OR GENDER SING THE ULTRA-PATRIOTIC AMERICAN ANTHEM, THE STAR SPANGLED BANNER?


With the Christmas/New Year’s holiday season making me feel oh so grateful and happy for what I currently have, I also find myself thinking back to holiday’s past when things were not so great and today I remembered something unusual that occurred during the Christmas/New Year’s holiday four years ago back in 2008.

Four years ago during the Christmas/New Year’s holiday when I was staying at one of the better homeless shelters in New Hampshire (One that was super clean, didn’t allow intoxication or theft of any kind, had plenty of good food, had less than a handful of the employees stealing only 10% of the donations that came in for the residents and one that let you stay in the shelter all day long just as long as you weren’t sleeping and didn’t kick your ass out between the hours of 9:00 am – 5:00 pm with no place to go other than the library even in the freezing cold) one night at about 8:00 pm I went down to the lower level of the shelter to clean the bathroom which was my assigned chore for that day.

Sitting in the living room area of the lower level on the couch were two nice White guys in their 50’s named Jerry and Dan. All through the day the two men were talking about some football game that they were dying to watch later that night so not wanting to disturb them I dragged my cleaning supplies with me as quietly as I could in the direction of the bathroom that I had been assigned to clean but as I passed the two men they turned their attention away from the tv and started chatting with me and I happily obliged after taking a quick peek at the tv and seeing that the game had not formally started yet.

Anyhoo, as we were all talking, all of a sudden the song, The Star Spangled Banner started to play and both men quickly but nicely shushed me. I instantly became quiet. Dan, even rose to his feet and placed his hand over his heart. After the song was finished, Jerry startled the hell out of me when he said, “I hate it when they do that!” in a voice filled with extreme irritation. “Do what?” I quickly asked perplexed. “Sing The Star Spangled Banner like that.” he replied, extreme irritation still visible in his voice and now on his slightly flushed face.

And yet again I was perplexed because the plump Black woman who had just finished singing the song in my opinion had done a great job singing the American anthem, whoever the hell she was. So, I didn’t understand what Jerry meant. Jerry obviously seeing that I had no clue about what the hell he was talking about quickly and vehemently clued me in fast. “You’re not supposed to sing The Star Spangled Banner like that. The song is supposed to be sung plain and simple! No theatrics!” he said, still extremely irritated and flushed.

After Jerry said his peace I then immediately understood what he was talking about. It was clear that Jerry was upset that the Black woman had done a very soulful rendition of The Star Spangled Banner and it was oh so obvious that Jerry didn’t like that one little bit. After a few seconds of taking this in, I immediately thought that was ridiculous. So, I defended the vocalist because in my eyes she hadn’t done anything wrong.

“She was only putting her own personal spin on the song. Ya’ know, just adding a little flavor.” I said to Jerry. But Jerry and Dan, who I now noticed was still standing but his right hand was no longer placed over his heart but rather at its side, were having none of it. “The Star Spangled Banner is supposed to be sung plain and simple! No theatrics!” Jerry said again, with a firm chin and a note of finality in his extremely irritated voice.

At Jerry’s words, I immediately let my eyes roll heavenward and said in an equally firm voice, “This is America, a person has the right to sing The Star Spangled Banner anyway they want to!” This time Dan joined in the dispute and said, “Your wrong, Tina. The song is not supposed to sung that way. It’s supposed to be sung plain and simple with no theatrics just like Jerry said before. To sing The Star Spangled Banner any other way is vulgar and disrespectful to the country, veterans and the flag.”

Again, I let my eyes roll heavenward and not really wanting to get into a more in depth dispute over how The Star Spangled Banner should be sung, I theatrically shrugged my shoulders and said, “Whatever.” and went off to clean the bathroom.

Folks, let me tell you that over the past four years every once in a while this patriotic ghost has come back to haunt me from time to time and get me thinking. And here are a few of my thoughts:

Since I know for a fact that Jerry and Dan didn’t have one racist bone in their bodies after knowing them for awhile I had to rule out the fact that they were complaining about the song The Star Spangled Banner being sang that way only because the woman who sang it was Black because I knew damn well that if a White man had done a little blue-eyed Righteous Brothers soul to the song, Jerry and Dan would be just as upset as well. Or even if a White man had performed a country rendition of The Star Spangled Banner (Jerry and Dan both like country music) with a little twang in his voice or even if a White man classical trained in the theatre had performed the song The Star Spangled Banner as if he were performing it on Broadway in a dramatic opera like Les Miserables or The Mikado, Jerry and Dan still would not have liked it and would have been upset by it.

I have long surmised that with these two men, who I like to think of as conservative Americans, when it comes to The Star Spangled Banner there is no middle ground, no compromise. Part of me wonders if they are just both products of their time being that they were both born approximately in the 1950’s or 1960’s where things were more black and white back then. Hmmm? Even though I disagree with them on how The Star Spangled Banner should be sung both men do have a right to their own opinion but so do I which is why I finally wrote about this subject.

Anyhoo, however you think that our national anthem, The Star Spangled Banner should be sung in my opinion is up to you as long as it is not sung in a hateful or perverted way. It is and always will be one of the best songs ever written! On that fact both, Jerry, who now lives up in heaven and Dan, who still lives on earth in New Hampshire just a couple of blocks away from me, will most definitely agree! And folks, finally we have some common ground. Hooray!!!

P.S.    Francis Scott Key you totally rock!  And lip syncing the American anthem totally sucks!  Did you hear that, Beyonce?

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DURING THE “HEADLINES” SEGMENT ON THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO I SAW ……….


Recently on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno I saw an ad during his hilarious “Headlines” segment for an underwater cell phone and whether this item is fake or real ……

P.S.     In other words, folks, I didn’t feel like taking an extra couple of seconds like any decent Dan Brown-like DeVinci Code researching writer would have before I wrote this blog post to check out the cell phone’s realness or fakeness on Google. Hey folks, I ain’t gonna’ lie, even sometimes the great Tina Knowledgeable Peden gets lazy!

Anyhoo, back to the issue at hand AND computer keyboard.

In regards to an underwater cell phone, other than being an extremely useful tool to be utilized in an emergency situation to call for help in a hurricane or tsunami or to say a short fuck you to your lying cheating spouse just before your lungs fill up with eight tons of water due to a hurricane or tsunami, I think that the invention of the underwater cell phone is probably one of the worst ideas ever! But that’s just my opinion. But to be fair let me list a couple of reasons to back up my opinion. And here they are:

-Folks, I know that we all are very busy bees at some point in our lives with holidays like Christmas and everyday real life things like jobs and the kids but come the fuck on! If a drastic situation arises where you absolutely have to make a phone call while you are in some damn water it’s hard for a normal almost sane person like me to believe that you can’t simply drag your ass out of the damn water for a few microseconds to make the damn call? I mean unfuckingbelieveable!!!

-And folks, what if the damn underwater cell phone malfunctions and shorts out while you are in the damn water conversing on it! Can anybody say instant death by electrocution! I mean folks if you don’t care about your own sorry ass getting electrocuted while you are underwater then just take a couple of seconds to visualize a couple of dolphins or other precious sea life animals or mammals watching your nasty-ass body twitching around wildly in the beautiful-ass ocean as if you were doing one of the latest crazy-ass hip hop moves all the while involuntarily pissing up a storm in the precious sea life animal’s or mammal’s precious ocean front home! Folks, that’s not only damn nasty but damn rude! I mean come on folks, would you go over to a family member or friend’s house and start doing crazy-ass hip hop moves and pissing up a storm all over their house? Folks, we all know the answer to that question is a big-ass Molly Ringwald Sixteen Candles, “I don’t think so!” Always remember folks, that while you are scuba diving underwater anywhere in the world and taking in all of the precious sea life, the precious sea life is also taking your weird-ass face mask wet suit air tube wearing-ass in too. To put it simply folks, the precious sea life don’t want to see no electrocutions all up in their expensive-ass ocean front homes so take that electrocution shit somewhere else!

-And folks, what about those stupid-ass cell phone manufacturers that make the blood red looking backlight underwater cell phones that have the ability to attract every damn shark and piranha in a million mile radius? Trust me baby, you don’t want attention like that underwater! So folks, please say, “Hell no” to underwater cell phones!

Moving on!

-And folks, what if the underwater cell phone that you purchase doesn’t have a non-slip grip! I mean cell phones are slippery enough when wet when used while talking on them while you are also jogging or as a fun vibrating naughty picture taking sex toy but an underwater cell phone with no non-slip grip! Baby you can kiss that sucker 50,000 leagues under the sea goodbye!

-And speaking of taking photos and dumb-ass cell phone manufacturers, what about those entrepreneurial idiots who have the audacity to create a picture taking feature on the damn underwater cell phone? Guys, listen up! This feature is the biggest no pussy getting app in the world for you! Look guys, let me school you even further, humidity hair and bed head are bad enough on a woman’s I want to look good all of the damn time ego but guys can you imagine you and your gal fooling around in the swimming pool taking jello and nekkid photo shots of each other and guys you happen to get a pic of your gal underwater! Guys, can you say porcupine hair! (Folks, feel free to insert the scary-ass theme to the kick-ass horror movie, Psycho, which starred Anthony Perkins and Janet Leigh here.) Guys, if you want to live or get some future pussy from your gal, nobody on earth better see that photo ever! I said it before and i’ll say it again, underwater cell phones are a bad-ass idea! And guys, when I say the word, bad-ass, I don’t mean the word in the “good” way I mean the word in the “horrible” way!

-And last but certainly not least, what if your underwater cell phone has a music app and on a beautiful hot sunny day you decide to take a dip in the ocean to cool off and bring your underwater cell phone with you. Picture yourself gently floating in the ocean while a sweet melody serenades you when all of a sudden your favorite party song comes on and not being able to resist you turn the volume all the way up to full blast. For a minute and a half everything is great, everything is fine until you suddenly feel a tap on your right shoulder and when you turn in that direction you are shocked to see an extremely pissed off dolphin telling you in clear dolphin sign language- like signs to turn that shit down now and you tell the dolphin that you’re willing to compromise by turning the music down after the song is over in three minutes. The dolphin nods their head and retreats and for the next three minutes everything is good, everything is fine and true to your word after the song ends you do turn the music down to a reasonable volume but as soon as you do this you feel another tap on your right shoulder and again turn in that direction expecting to see the dolphin again, but not this time, this time you only see a big-ass suction cupped arm bearing down on you fast and when it makes contact with you it whacks you soundly upside the head three times. Folks, let me school you. When a dolphin, one of the gentlest creatures on earth tells you to turn some music down now, YOU TURN THE MUSIC DOWN IMMEDIATELY! There is no room for compromise! And if you don’t turn the music down immediately like the dolphin asked you, he or she will get one of their octopus friends to teach you one hell of a bitch slapping lesson! Folks, i’ve said it before and i’ll say it again one more time before I go, underwater cell phones are a terrible idea! And from a dolphin and octopus’ point of view, underwater cell phones totally suck! Pun intended.

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HERE IS THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT THING THAT I PERSONALLY DON’T LIKE ABOUT SOAP OPERAS!


Why do people on soap operas particularly the popular soap opera, Days Of Our Lives often drink from empty cups as if they were full?
I mean don’t get me wrong I know that they are “acting” and don’t want to spill anything on their precious ten thousand dollar clothes or smudge their precious lipsticks but would it be a crime to drink some actual liquid from a damn cup?
I don’t get that.
I mean come on Hollywood don’t you think us television watching public know the difference between a person lifting a cup filled with liquid to their mouths and drinking opposed to a person lifting a cup full of air to their lips and drinking?
Hey Hollywood, us television watching public ain’t stupid!
Hey Hollywood, take my unsolicited advice!
Hey Hollywood, for the love of god just show some balls and just show an actor or actress drinking some actual liquid from a damn cup on a soap opera instead of faking it!
I mean come on!
Soap operas are already incredibly fake as it is so this shouldn’t be too much of a stretch for you guys.
And Hollywood, us television watching public don’t care if the liquid in the cup is some coffee, orange juice, Pepsi cola or even some eggnog with extra nutmeg in it, just please for the love of god have the actors or actresses actually drink something out of the cup instead of damn air!
I mean Hollywood, the drink doesn’t have to big a big gulp drink that you buy at your local Seven 11 convenience store!
Hell you guys could just put a drop of liquid in a cup for all I care just for the love of god put some damn liquid it it!
That’s all i’m asking!
Jeez!

P.S.     Hey Hollywood, I don’t get you guys! And I stress the word, “guys!” I mean you guys usually show every part of a woman’s body in a Rated “R” movie so I don’t know what your deal is about showing an actor or actress drinking some actual liquid in a cup on a soap opera. That’s not only hypocritical Hollywood guys but extremely weird! Hey Hollywood guys, i’m just puttin’ that piece of info out there for you and the rest of the television watching public.

Another P.S.     Hey Hollywood, haven’t you guys ever heard of equal opportunity nudity rights! In simple terms, if guys can show every body part of a woman in a Rated “R” movie then you should show every body part of a man in a Rated “R” movie too! To put it even simpler, there are alot of women out there like me who are not perverts who want to see more dick and balls in movies!

Yet Another P.S.     Having actors and actresses in soap operas constantly talking to themselves outloud is also extremely weird, too! Again Hollywood i’m just puttin’ this shit out there for you guys and gals.

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