Monday, November 24, 2014

My Name Is Thanksgiving...Remember Me?

Hi all…Thanksgiving here for I’m With Stupid. Yeah…That’s right, I’m Thanksgiving.

An actual entity called Thanksgiving, talking to you from the pages of I'm With Stupid. Well, not an actual entity…perhaps more of a spiritual entity. And sadly…

Be I spiritual, or corporeal, an entity that has now grown old and hackneyed in the eyes, minds, and souls of many Americans.

I used to matter. Yep, it’s true.

Hell, for nearly 150 years I was a big deal. Ever since Lincoln called for a national day of Thanksgiving, families across America would once a year, gather ‘round their tables, break bread, repair old friendships, and once in awhile, begin new ones.

It was a day that the entire nation took a deep breath, reflected on its heritage, and showed appreciation for those who through immigration, religious persecution, or just plain luck, ultimately allowed those of us here today, to enjoy the fruits of this nation.

And now?

I Thanksgiving, have become but an oxymoron in that I am both an afterthought and noted precursor to the commercial hegemony that is Christmas.

I deserve more than that.

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on the courage of those who offered America her chance at greatness when they landed on Plymouth Rock and elsewhere, in hopes of building a brighter future in the face of hunger, sickness, and more than a few pissed off Indians.

And…while it’s true that July 4, 1776 marks the birth of this great nation and we celebrate it magnanimously, the stubborn and fertile seed that was planted in order to make that happen, was sown when the brave and oppressed from Europe landed here some 150 years prior to that.

And on Thanksgivings prior, we as a nation, as neighborhoods, and as families, would celebrate the struggles of the Pilgrims and the arduous task of colonizing this country.

We would give thanks to those gone before us and more importantly to those with us, because just as the Pilgrims had to rely upon each other, we would recognize the fact that we rely upon our families and friends as well.

And then, just somewhat recently…the national camaraderie muted, the familial bonds loosened, and the hour glass speed at which we celebrated Thanksgiving and each other, turned into the break neck pace of a stopwatch counting down to the Christmas season.

I today, am but a shell of my former self. I get six hours tops.

People eat at one or so, make small talk, exchange Christmas wish lists, and then, after a post-tryptophan nap, hit the stores for Black Friday sales, in the name of celebrating Jesus, the Maccabees, and whomever or whatever.

I today, in this world of 24/7 Cable News, big box store sales, and instant messaging, have become an anachronism…nothing more than a Norman Rockwell painting that embodies the “quaint” times which define, Americana.

I’m saddened, but have a word or two of hope for you on the day which honors me…

For those of you who are taking the time to celebrate Thanksgiving with friends and family, God bless you, and may you delight in the warmth of good food, good wine, and good company for hours upon end.

For those of you who look at me but nothing more than a prologue to Christmas, God bless you as well and I hope you soon rediscover what Cicero said many centuries ago:

“A thankful heart is not only the greatest virtue, but the parent of all the other virtues.” 


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Friday, November 21, 2014

This Thanksgiving, Matt-Man Is Giving Til' It Hurts

With less than a week before America gluttonously celebrates Thanksgiving with food, wine, and Black
Friday shopping specials, I thought it would be nice to take time and reflect on the word Thanksgiving itself…Specifically, the last half of said word.


While it is nice that at this time of year people trumpet with clarion call for what they are thankful, it would be nice to hear more from the trumpeting brass section of life about what people are doing in the matter of giving.

I being a humble man, hate to broadcast the many nice things I have done for others, but I feel perhaps it is time to exploit relate a couple of incidences of my generosity that I have shown recently in order to give people a push to do the same in their lives.

Recently, Jayman approached me and asked if we could not do a show this Sunday, November 23rd.  He said that he needed to spend quality time with his family in honor of Thanksgiving.  I said, “Of course, family comes first.”  However…

When Blog Talk Radio CEO Alan Levy was informed about us not doing this Sunday’s show, he with gnashing of the teeth and a less than competent posse of knife-wielding tech ninjas surrounding him said…

“You will surely do a show, or…you will surely die.”

Jayman along with a steel-spined and giving Matt-Man by his side, stood resolute…

Needless to say, we are still on Blog Talk Radio, but are not doing a show this Sunday.  And then?

The Beer Mine has a relatively new employee.  Beer Mine Beth has been with us for some seven months now and has kids…kids who desperately want, need, and hope to spend the blessed day of Thanksgiving with their mama, but…there was problem.

The Beer Mine (conveniently located at the corner of Elmore and Burnett Rd. in Bagwine, OH.) is open on Thanksgiving and Beth typically works on Thursdays.  Yours truly could not bear to envision her precious little ones spending Thanksgiving Day wiping away the tears, longing to be held in a maternal grasp while foraging on cold Beefaroni, so…

I told Beer Mine Beth that I would work Thanksgiving Day for her.  Sure I know…I could be spending it at home with my family, but, well…my family understands that the Welcome Mat laid upon the stoop of my heart and good-nature is one that reads:  “Wipe your troubles from off your feet; and at my giving table, please have a seat.”

Sure, it’s a pretty large welcome mat that contains that message, but let me tell you…the front porch of my heart is big enough to display it.

And well…That’s what I am all about this  In fact, while some folks call me Matt-Man, some call me Matt, and others even call me Matty.  For all of the giving that I have been giving this Thanksgiving, I want to be known as the Amattican Red Cross.

Please follow my Christ-Like example, and as always…


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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

There's No Shortage of Bullshit

Holaaaaaaa lovers of the finer things in life! Have you guys heard about the panic over the looming chocolate shortage? OMG!!! I call bullshit on this. I think this is just a way for Big Chocolate to justify raising their prices. They know they can’t do that without criticism and having to deal with huge crowds of PMSing women protesting outside their offices. So what did they do? They got some corporate shill who doesn't eat chocolate to write a fake story about climate change, dry weather in Africa, Ebola, rapidly rising demand in China (blaming China is always a great move) and other shit to give them cover to raise prices.  It’s pretty outrageous if you ask me.

This isn’t the first time an industry has manufactured a fake shortage to raise prices. Big Bacon did it just a couple of years.  Bacon is ridiculously expensive now. Did that slow anyone down? Hell no! We’re still eating bacon and there is no shortage. BTW, it’s not my style to go all “conspiracy theory guy” on y’all, but I do have a theory about who is to blame for this. Yup, none other than Kevin Bacon himself! Quit watching his movies and TV shows and just let him fade away and pork prices will fall back to normal.

And let’s not forget about the big, fat, fake “hops shortage” Big Beer has been alleging the last few years. PU-LEEEEEEZE!!! People have been drinking the hell outta beer ever since there were Vikings and the Irish. Now, all of the sudden like in 2014 there’s this mysterious beer shortage? This is the biggest load of hooey I’ve ever heard of. And, just who could possibly be to blame for THIS so-called shortage???

Uh … Well … Heh …. Uh … It’s still bullshit. Probably. *puts hands in pockets* *walks away while looking at the sky and whistling*

Anyhoodle, there is one area that really is experiencing a shortage: Fine Art. Most of the greatest pieces of art have been bought up by collectors, rich people with more money than sense and museums. Heck, just this last week a one-of-a-kind piece of truly stunning art was listed as up for auction at Sotheby’s. Take a look at this thing! Isn’t it beautiful? Bidding starts at $1,475,923.36 AMERICAN!