Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Peanut Corp. of America: Where were federal inspectors?

According to news reports, the last visit made by federal food safety inspectors to the Peanut Corporation of America was in 2001.

We should not just be investigating PCA but the USDA as well. Both failed to do their jobs properly. Personally, I think every food manufacturer/packager in America should have to pay to have USDA inspectors at its site every day that it is in production. You want to produce and package food? Ok fine, you are required to have USDA inspectors and you, the company has to pay for it.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Dear Tim in Los Angeles...

Dear Tim,

I appreciate you taking the time to post on my blog today in reference to my post in December 2006 regarding my defective Office Depot chair.

In case you can't remember what you wrote, I'll remind you:

Jess,

People like you make me sick! Office Depot could give you two replacement chairs free of charge and you would still be a disgruntled customer because of the responses they have given to you up to this point! Loose a few pounds, I'm sure your next chair will be much happier.

Tim

Well Tim, let me first say I'm so sorry that you didn't grow up with a father figure to teach you how to properly treat women with respect and consideration. I'm sorry that your family and the public school system failed to teach you the ABC's of common decency and respect to your fellow human beings. You obviously have problems working and playing well with others.

I'll admit at first your comment irritated me because there are some pretty nasty men out there who, in attempt to feel powerful and manly, use comments about a woman's weight or her looks, to make her feel inferior. It's an age-old game. Because you know women can be sensitive about that one thing, it's what you go for first and afterwards you can stand tall feel good about yourself.

Well, Tim, you're not a man, in fact you're far from it because a real man doesn't behave like that. At first I was angry at you, now I just feel sorry for you. Why? Because if this is the way you act towards people you don't even know, God knows how you treat the people you do know. You probably don't respect women, can't keep a relationship, and you are probably a very lonely person. If you do have friends, they are likely not the kind of friends that are decent and respectable. And it is very likely you have no one to look up to as a role model to show you an example of a real man.

Look, you don't have to be mean to people to feel empowered. The best way for a man to be empowered is by taking the life God gave him and doing something constructive and productive with it. If you're angry, channel that anger into something positive, use it to do some good. If you're hurt, talk to a counselor. If you're lonely, make friends. You don't have to resort to degrading people to feel powerful.

You will probably laugh this off, which is fine, it's your loss. But I'm here to tell you that the women of America (and around the world) a tired of men like you insulting them. The days of men like you making women feel inferior is over. The game is up, you lose. Time to move on.

Good luck getting your shit together, you're gonna need it.

On behalf of women everywhere...

Jess

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Rule by executive order?

We'll see....five Executive Orders in three days. How many will be next and what will they cover? Only time will tell. I would prefer issues be debated by Congress whenever possible and EO's only be used in certain situations. My reason for this is that the weight of an EO carries as much as Congress. Is it wise that one person in the nation's highest office have that much power? Do EO's undermine the separation of powers? And what prevents the abuse of power with EO's?

The dichotomy here is that the power of executive order is both supported and limited by the Constitution. So, when is it appropriate and when it is not appropriate to use EO?

The Heritage foundation cites examples in which EO's are necessary and constitutional if and only if the President is "lawfully exercising" his duties in one of the following functions: Commander in Chief, Head of State, Chief Law Enforcement Officer, or Head of the Executive Branch.

There have been quite a few EO's which expressed an abuse of power. One of the most revered Presidents in modern history was one of the worst offenders. With the use of EO's, FDR greatly expanded government and violated the Constitutional rights of Americans by implementing interment camps for US citizens of Japanese descent. And President Harry Truman also shamefully committed an abuse of power by attempting to seize the steel industry during the Korean conflict. It takes awhile to read every single EO ever written and I don't have the time but maybe you do and you can find them here. It would be interesting to know the EO's issued that were above and beyond the scope of Presidential power.

One can only wonder what will happen during this Presidency.

I don't quite think this is what JFK had in mind...

...when he talked about passing the torch to a new generation---



These two racists who call themselves artists, named Jay-Z and Young Jeezy are unfortunately a huge influence upon young people in America today, especially young boys who aspire to be like them. What they are however is a disgrace to everything America stands for. These rappers represent nothing but hate and fear, they feed on it to line their pockets with money and to live the lavish lifestyle. The people who cheer them on are just as low-class as they are.

It's crap like this from assholes like this that causes racial tension in America.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Beer, beer, everywhere and not a drop to drink!

Hundreds of spilled beer kegs shut down interstate traffic

Clean up for a pair of Monday morning crashes near the intersection of Interstates 10 and 75 required moving 200 kegs of beer and shut down southbound traffic for a few hours. Two people were injured, one seriously.

Read the full story here!


Now that just sucks, doesn't it? What a waste! LOL

Monday, January 19, 2009

Felix...

I haven't been able to talk about this much lately but I figured I'd let everyone know who followed the Felix saga with us...

If you've been catching up here you've no doubt read my posts about Felix the cat, (click on that link and read not just this post but the previous ones!) who showed up at our house out of the blue a few months ago. I loved Felix, there was just something special about him. Every animal has its own unique personality and Felix was no different. He'd come to me when I called him through the woods (where he slept all day!) and he'd have this special "meeeoooow" and he would play and roll for me. He was so cute.

I'm sad to tell you that Felix is gone. He died a few days ago. We had placed him in a loving home with my best pal Susan's mom and stepdad and he was happy there, they are good people who love animals. He was only a few miles away of course I wanted to go visit him often but DH would laugh and say "I don't think so, you never know, Felix might find his way back into our car!!" LOL. Well he enjoyed his home, got used to hanging out in the barn, getting to know his new parents who he just loved, and adjusting to the good life. Susan's folks wanted him to be an indoor-outdoor cat but as you know it takes time for a cat to get used to being indoors.

Well last Thursday morning, Susan's daughter Lauren was on her way to school and passed her grandparents house and she found Felix laying in the road, dead. Apparently he did something he never did before and that's cross the road. He didn't make it. Susan's folks gave him a proper burial. I am so glad it was Lauren who found him and they were able to bury him right away. We were all very hurt by his death because well--he was special. And he'll always be a part of us but not just Vin and me but also Susan and her folks, and of course Lauren.

Here is one of the videos I took of him while he was still with us before we found him his new home.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Most people are lucky if they can snag one ticket at a traffic stop. Try as I might, the cops just refuse to pull me over.

Now why do I want to get pulled over? Oh you know, we simple, hardworking Americans need to be kept on the straight and narrow from time to time and it being a damn-near-nanny state, I would hope the police would want to be sure to scare the crap out of me so I don't even think about breaking the law. Sometimes when I want to be a bad girl, I need the threat of a hefty fine or community service picking up trash on the side of the road to keep me in line, remind me to be a good and dutiful citizen. But I'll tell you, I do my best to get pulled over. I speed, I drive with one foot hanging out the drivers side window, I use one hand to eat and the other to talk on the phone, while driving (rather well I might add) with my left knee, I flip the cops off, I moon them as I'm driving, I even yell "hey man where's the friggin donuts?" and still I don't get pulled over.

I'm beginning to think there's some level of discrimination going on here!

And then you have others who are like police magnets. The littlest thing and they get pulled over. I don't get it, what do they have that I don't have?

Take the 34 year old man who is about to turn 35 on Sunday if his wife allows him to live that long. He truly believes he's Bo Duke and his 2004 Toyota Corolla is really the General Lee incognito. Driving through BFE he achieves the dreaded trifecta...the one that I have yearned for years to achieve---not one, not two, but THREE citations in one stop. Of course the funny thing is that as said person was being written up, he's thinking ="oh this cop won't ticket me, he'll see from my license that my birthday is in three days!" (yeah ok!)

So....said individual, the nearly but not quite there yet 35 year old male was not only 20 miles over the speed limit ("I didn't see the sign" is so lame!), but he wasn't wearing his seat belt (the old "ohhh it's too restrictive" won't really do you much good now if you're splattered all over the highway now will it?) And oh yes, said individual who is not only half-owner of the General Lee---er---I mean Toyota Corolla---but is also the person in the house who thinks the "man is in charge" (LOL!) and uses the excuse "I do stuff around the house--I take care of the car!!!" as a means of getting out of cleaning the house......yes the man whose responsibility it is to take the insurance card his wife gives him and put it in the glove compartment as part of his car upkeep responsibilities did not have a current insurance card in the glove compartment on the day he hit the trifecta!

Today he hit pay dirt--in the form of three citations totaling $407 but only $318 of which has to be paid because he will fax the insurance card to them. But still, 3 citations? $318 to be paid? Not bad for a day's work eh? And certainly the town of Baldwin, Florida which is likely facing major budget cuts which will no doubt result in the reduction of their police force from two cops and a horse to just one cop and no horse, is happy because he just raised enough money to keep the one-celled jail running this weekend for Otis, the local drunk who also serves as the town barber and mayor.

I'd just like to thank the town of Baldwin Florida for being dedicated in having both of their police officers and one horse on duty this afternoon so as to make the roads safer for the 20 or so citizens which inhabit the town. I hope that this hard-earned $318 helps feed and shelter Otis and perhaps might buy some nice drapes for his cell. If there's anything left, perhaps the town can have a parade--in my honor of course.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Week one of the new term begins...

Well so far so good, a week into the new term and I am not pulling my hair out yet. One of the courses I'm taking is Medieval Germany and it is fascinating. I enjoy studying the middle ages period 800-1300, it's fascinating. It's a little complicated, the geography of the area that is, but I'm keeping up. I think this is going to be a good term though there will be a LOT of reading and writing, I can handle it. I've got three books to read for each course so I shall be very busy!

Work has been busy too, very busy . The students are always pretty needy at the beginning of the term. By that I don't mean anything negative, I just mean that when we have a two-week break and then come back they always have a lot of questions!

It will calm down soon. Probably will be very quiet on Friday, everyone will be home and hungover sleeping off the national championship if we win.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Forced unions...

Call me ignorant because I had no idea that there were states which had laws making it legal for companies with union contracts to refuse to hire an employee unless they joined the union and fire an individual if they lapse in their union dues.

I never heard of this, maybe because in Florida that doesn't exist.

Can you imagine a government entity backing this? Regardless of the pros and cons, the one reason I believe it's in existence is because the union in said states greases the palms of the politicians who favor the law. That's all it is.

It's disgraceful. I'd love a case like this to go before the Supreme Court.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Well Susan and I can breathe a sigh of relief...

Susan called me bright and early this morning to let me know that Felix had eaten last night! Her mom put out some moist and dry food and he ate some of the moist food and they spotted him in the pasture hanging out there. So the good news is that he ate and that he didn't run away. I am very happy indeed. And now he'll see Susan's stepdad Lamar out at the barn every day and he'll get used to it and know he's in a safe place with people who will love him and take care of him.

Susan asks me this morning "how did I ever get dragged into your cat saga?"

Well my dear you've known me for what---23 years, it was bound to happen eventually. You've got to let KY know what's going on, I can picture her laughing about it!

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Felix has a new home but we need good thoughts...

I am really upset and I have to just talk about it.

I was hoping DH and I would find Felix a good home, and especially hoping it would be with someone we knew and Susan came through for us. Her mom and stepdad wanted to take him because they love animals and would enjoy having an indoor/outdoor cat not to mention he might be helpful in keeping the mice away. It's a house with forty acres behind it, a cook house, and a large barn, it's a cat's dream!

Last night I sat on the back porch and petted him for about an hour and told him all about his new home and how they are great people who love animals. And then he excused himself and ran off to do whatever cats do at night.

Well the plan was for Susan to come over to the house today to pick up Felix and take him over to her mom and stepdad's. Well Felix didn't show up this morning, in fact it wasn't until about 4 pm. He showed up on the porch, DH picked him up, brought him in the house and I fed him and there he meowed a bit and made some typical Felix noise but he was calm (while he was meowing he let me pet him!) and then he ate some food and let me pet him and stroke him and he rolled on the floor, he was being so silly.

Well Susan showed up, he was so nice with her, never pulling away and she was petting him and he was so sweet, I knew this would be a good thing. I offered her my cat carrier, but she had a cardboard cat box the vet had given her, you know it's got handles and large holes in it. We put Felix in there, she put him in her minivan and they took off. I didn't hear anything so I thought all was well.

Finally I call Susan an hour ago and she told me what happened. On her way to her mom's house which is only a few miles from our house, Felix clawed through the box, then wandered about the van, finally settling on the dashboard and meowing. When she got to her mom's house, she had Felix in her arms but up came April running from the house to greet Susan. Felix didn't know April was there, April didn't know Susan had a cat in her arms. Well Felix had a fit, scratched Susan's arms and stomach and got away and ran up a tree. They thought maybe if Susan coaxed him down with some food on a ladder that might help but instead, Felix jumped down and ran into the forty acre field behind the house.

They watched him walk around the field, he was sniffing and seemed to be calmed down. Susan's stepdad knows animals and his feeling is that Felix will calm down and when he gets hungry he'll show up at the barn where they have his food, which is where he initially ran away from.

They were so excited about having this new member of their family, what a way to begin it eh?

I asked Susan if I should go over to her mom's house and call Felix, he's used to my voice but Susan didn't think it would do any good because Felix probably does not want to be upset more right now. I told her to give her mom my number and if he shows up to call me. I just want to know he's ok. Susan said after church tomorrow she could meet me at her mom's and we could go find him, but that's not till 2 pm, I can't wait that long. I'd be over there in the morning if need be.

Poor Susan, she felt so bad, but honestly it wasn't her fault (and Susan I know you're reading this, it was NOT your fault girlfriend!!). And then I was crying and then she felt worse. She said she should have taken my advice and used my carrier, the plan was to take him into the barn and let him loose there. I told her that she shouldn't blame herself, because she did her best to help get him to his new home. But then I started to cry on the phone thinking about poor Felix out there alone in the dark and not knowing where he was. She asked if I'd be ok when I got off the phone cause we had both calmed down and talked ourselves into the idea he'd be ok. I mean he's right there behind the house right? Sure...and when he gets calmed down he'll wander about looking for food and his food is right there at the barn.

DH seems to think that Felix will be ok. Susan and I convinced ourselves he will be ok, well we convinced ourselves for the time being anyway. Cats are very smart as we all know. I have to believe he's smart enough to just go to the barn where he sees people and smells food...he just has to....

Our biggest fear is that he doesn't return to their house because he doesn't know where he's at. But he'll see and hear people and he's right behind the house, cats are smart and THIS cat is extremely smart. So Iv'e got to think he'll be ok.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Great family treasures...

One of my distant cousins Kyle Sanna sent me the photo below of my Sanna family. That is one of the earliest pics of the family. The young lady on the left of the photo is my great grandmother Giuseppa "Josephine" (we all called her Nonna), the woman to her left I think is Anna Romano Sanna, the man in the middle my great great grandfather Filippo Leone Sanna aka "Papa Leone", to his left are two of his sons, the oldest--Antonio Raphaelo "Anthony" Sanna and the youngest--Pasqualino aka "Douglas" Sanna.

What is amazing is that in this picture my grandmother May in her youth (and now!) is the spitting image of her mother in that photo.














Here are some of our family photos. Do you notice just how much my grandmother and her mother look alike?

Grams in Brooklyn in the 40's





















Grams and her mother Nonna in Brooklyn in the 40's. Grams is still around in her 90's.





















Mi familia at the summer placee in the Poconos in 1944. That's my great grandma Nonna, my grandmother's sister Jeanine who is still alive and kicking in her 80's, her father Thomas Gaetano Mangiere (he died suddenly in 1946) , then there's my Aunt Jo Ann and finally my grams holding her.





















Here's my grams and gramps in the Poconos. You know, my grandmother was always a beautiful woman and so was her mother Nonna but it wasn't until I saw that young picture of Nonna that I realized how beautiful the Sanna & Mangiere women in our family really were.