Archive for the 'Politics' Category

Published by PaintingChef on 06 Nov 2012

Why I Vote.

All over the internet today, people are telling you why they voted for their guy. I voted for my guy, you know who he is and I imagine you know why I voted for him. I’m blue almost to the bone although I refrained from voting for Mark Clayton because I would rather stab my eyeballs with flaming bamboo shards. (Really, Tennessee Democrats? Mark Clayton? FAIL.)

But what I want to talk to you about today is NOT who I voted for or why. It is why I VOTE, period.

First of all… I like to bitch. And if you don’t vote, you don’t get to bitch. That’s just a given. I read an article earlier today about 10 famous people who don’t vote and it astounded me. INFURIATED me. Jim Lehrer. Keith Olberman. Nate Silver. Jake Tapper. I understand that these people think they should remain objective (Keith Olberman… snort… I love the guy but only because he’s on my team but objective? I think not…) but to forgo the privilege of voting in order to do so? No. I don’t buy it. Three and four star generals not voting? That blows my mind. You defend this country. You’ve built your life around that. FUCKING PARTICIPATE IN IT. You don’t have to tell a soul who you voted for. But to not vote at all… you’ve completely lost my respect.

(I don’t even know for certain who my husband voted for. I know he voted in the Republican Primary and I just made him promise me that he wouldn’t vote for Rick Santorum. But he voted. And that’s sexy.)

But most notably not on that list? Women. Reason two that I vote. I’m a woman and I can vote. That wasn’t always the way it was. Case in point? This picture making the rounds today…

The women who paved the way for me are my heroes. They were strong, vocal and determined. And to not vote is a slap in the face to all that they worked for. I use my vote to honor their struggles and their success. I use my vote to avenge the votes that they were denied.

And third… I vote for my grandfather. Papa Bill was passionate about politics. It energized him like nothing I’ve ever seen. Regardless of the election, local, state, national, didn’t matter. He was volunteering at the precinct across the street from his house. He traveled with the Clinton/Gore and the Gore/Leiberman campaigns. And even when he was very sick at the end of his life, he voted. He never missed an election and one of the things that he passed along to me was what a privilege and a gift it is to be able to vote. To make your opinion known. But it is also a responsibility. It is a call to educate yourself. To form your own opinions and to never be complacent. I’m sure he was thrilled that my political leanings mirrored his own but I’m confident that as long as I used a combination of my head and my heart to find my own way, he would have been proud of me regardless.

So I vote. I vote because it is my right, my privilege, my responsibility. It is my voice and it is the gift that the women who came before me bestowed upon me. I vote because to NOT vote is not an option.

Why do YOU vote?

Published by PaintingChef on 05 Sep 2012

On political discourse, Facebook and the state of my tomatoes.

Dear all my Facebook Friends…

I get it. Politics. It’s serious. You are very passionate about your guy and I’m sure that you are certain that if you just post ONE MORE snarky comment about MY guy and his family or his wife or his ideals or whatever, that you are CERTAIN I will see the error of my ways and come a-runnin’ to your side of the fence.

But here’s the thing. We don’t agree and we aren’t going to agree and I really do try my hardest to just… ignore you. I respect your intelligence enough to believe that your views have validity, even when I strongly disagree.** Except for a few of you… a few of you I kind of think are total nut jobs but I think that all the time so this really doesn’t have anything to do with you.

So maybe stop yelling. Stop seizing every little morsel of fringe information out there and pouncing on it like it’s the gospel truth. I have the same view of the information that you get from FOX news that you have of the information I glean from NPR. I don’t trust your sources and you don’t trust mine. And that’s FINE. That’s the way the world works.

Here’s a question though… do you remember when there used to be this thing called “compromise” and how people were willing to accept that there was value on both sides of an argument? That was cool… wouldn’t it be great if we could revisit that and see if there was still some merit to it?

I’m just exhausted. I’m tired of opening up my Facebook feed and having to duck bullets because it’s such a war zone. If you are passionate about something, be an advocate for change in a fashion that might actually have some results. Don’t mock the first lady’s dress on Facebook. That’s just petty. (And that dress was the shit. Seriously. Tracey Reese for Secretary of Dresses.) If you are frustrated, get involved. If you are angry, contact someone who is in a position to do something about it. Volunteer for a campaign. Run for office yourself.

But I’m really more interested in mocking what you are listening to on Spotify, finding out what good books you’ve read lately and seeing pictures of your new puppy. I want to see a movie this weekend, got any suggestions? Do you think Miley Cyrus is pregnant? What’s a Harry Styles? Have you read that Vanity Fair article about Scientology yet? Do you miss Robin Roberts on GMA? I miss her already. Are you tailgating this weekend? Hey… I picked about 300 various peppers from my garden last night… what should I do with those? And why are all my tomatoes suddenly splitting before they ripen? THIS is why Mark Zuckerburg and baby jesus invented Facebook. THIS is how we can all help each other.

Let’s get back to being intelligent people capable of casual and intelligent conversation and the sharing of our everyday lives. Because right now? You’re kind of like that hairy guy with the sandwich board on the side of the road preaching about the end of the world. You aren’t helping your cause and nobody is listening.

**I cannot take credit for this little nugget… it is plagiarized from a friend and I am trying to adopt it as my new mantra. The only problem being that the idiots don’t wear special hats and so they aren’t immediately identifiable. And if you are not someone with a respectable level of intelligence, I will mock you mercilessly. Consider yourself warned. See also… people who said they were moving to Canada because the recent Supreme Court decision upholding the healthcare reform was too much like socialism… I judged you. Harshly. As clearly you were a moron

Published by PaintingChef on 05 Jun 2009

I’ll take a diet coke please. You can set it right here by my Colt .45.

This is not a political blog. This is not a local government or current events blog other than the current state of my uterus, shoe collection and 90210. I don’t really find it necessary to bang you over the head with my personal beliefs because I think they are evident through the way I live my life.

But…

There is a new law in Tennessee that is literally keeping me up at night with amazement and has baffled me so greatly that I am going to quote the former Simian Leader of the Free World Mr. Bush and say this recent piece of legislation has hit me with Shock and Awe.

(This is where I pause for a quick reference Google to make certain that I’m getting the details of this exactly right…and so you can look up Simian and learn that all I meant was homeboy looks like a monkey)

As of July 14th of this year, hand gun permit holders will be able to take their weapons into establishments selling alcoholic beverages.*

(blink… blink…)

To his credit and amidst great controversy, Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen vetoed this law, calling it an “invitation to disaster” before the Senate overrode his veto.*

Now that the facts are out of the way… can we talk about this? Because I’ve been in my fair share of bars. And you know that phrase “bar fight?” It comes from somewhere. Let’s think about all the situations that arise in a bar that are bad enough without introducing a FIREARM into the mix.

Imagine a bartender who has been told to cut someone off who has CLEARLY had way too much to drink. Now in the past, restaurants and bartenders have been held liable to a degree for the condition in which someone leaves their establishments. But riddle me this? If you are a bartender working for minimum wage plus tips and your manager tells you to cut someone off, a situation that is ALREADY delicate at best, are you going to be willing to piss off that drunk person (and their obviously impaired judgment) at the risk of a hole in your fucking head? Because guess what… he may have a gun now!

Picture the average drunken fraternity boy bar fight. Nobody knows why it started. Maybe it was a girl. Maybe it was some imagined show of disrespect. Who knows or cares, these two guys are too hammered to land a punch any damn way. Hey here’s a thought! For fun and games, let’s add the handgun that daddy bought you for Christmas! It’s okay! You aren’t breaking any rules!

Someone hit on your girlfriend while you were in the bathroom?

Steak overcooked?

Breadbasket take too long?

Server spill a drink on you?

I am truly baffled. What purpose could that firearm possibly serve you in a bar or a restaurant? And I’m not an idiot… I hear the talk about “self-defense” and “protecting my family in the event someone busts in and starts shooting” and those are very real concerns in this day and age. Those things happen. Just like plane crashes, car accidents and house fires. Do you still take airplanes? Do you drive a car? Do you live in a house?

Are you THAT afraid of being somewhere when someone robs it or flips out and goes postal? Because that’s part of life man. As soon as you step foot into that establishment with a gun on your person (and you aren’t a member of law enforcement) you’ve just become part of the problem. If you are that scared, don’t bring a gun with you when you go out for a burger, for the love of god, just order take-out!

* “Senate overrides veto; guns allowed in bars” By Tom Humphrey published online at KnoxNews.com on June 5, 2009

Published by PaintingChef on 09 Jan 2009

View From the Couch.

Call it slackitude, trying to not get fired by my dad, distraction, LIFE (geez…) whatever… but a couple of months ago, I kind of let something slide past my writing radar. Something that I always meant to get back to and talk about but never did and then the timeliness passed and then it kind of became like that one friend you keep meaning to call but then you don’t and all that time goes by and then things would just be AWKWARD and so you don’t call and they don’t call either and… well… you know where I’m going with that one. And that situation is only useful in the breakup of two non-confrontational high-schoolers.

But the timeliness, she is giving me another chance. And by god, I’m not missing this boat again.

In a little over a week, Patrick and I will pawn our animals off on my parents (maybe I should talk to them about that…?) for a few days, climb in the car and make our way to Washington D.C. for the Inauguration. I’ve never been to D.C. and I think Patrick has only been on school and church trips and I have a feeling those didn’t include bars. (And if they did maybe I should rethink my whole church viewpoint…?)

(This trip though? Will totally include bars. And hopefully some REALLY tummy food. Any suggestions? And did I tell you that I’ve already bought tickets for the International Spy Museum!?!? A SPY MUSEUM!!)

The significance of THIS election being the one that finally brought Patrick and I to agree on a candidate is thrilling to me. I cannot wait to stand there with him, holding his hand and witness such a historic moment. It’s no secret that Patrick and I rarely agree politically. And I’m sure that in his mind he was just choosing what he called the “Lesser of Two Evils” and yeah… he’s probably just humoring me in going to the Inauguration.

But he’s going.

And so am I. Because sometimes a person just has enough of watching the world happen from the couch.

Published by PaintingChef on 07 Nov 2008

A Placeholder…

I have so much to talk about. My heart has been bursting at the seams for two whole days now and I can’t get it out. I feel like we can finally, as a nation, begin to heal from the raping both we and The Constitution have been victim to for the past 8 years. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. And yes… you’ve all read the glowing statements of hope and excitement all over the blogosphere for a few days now. And you’ll get one more right here… just as soon as I can make it take form on paper. Right now it exists as only a buzz that vibrates through my body. A kind of white noise of optimism and anticipation that floats fuzzily in the air and is the only reason I haven’t just flipped right on out because while on the one hand… life is AWESOME…

But also? My life is busting at the seams and I’m not just talking about my pants…

The business side of my life and my job is threatening to drown me and I have actually had to hire a part time assistant at work. She starts on Monday the 17th. Which would be totally awesome if it weren’t for the fact that I am SO irony’s bitch… I am hiring an assistant and she’ll be so busy chained to a desk working through the massive list that has grown to over a dozen post its notes as things come up that I know I will never get accomplished that I may end up being the one to fetch Starbucks while I’m out running errands that I have no time to do…

Fabulous.

And by the way… WHY DID NOBODY TELL ME that there was a sequel to Center Stage?!?! Peter Gallagher and Ethan Stiefel are BOTH back in all their “I’m too good for this shit” and “Oh my god, it’s embarrassing that I’m even on screen pretending to act, here, I’ll distract you with a pirouette and my bugling man-tights” glory… respectively. Center Stage: Turn It Up INDEED! I was only able to watch bits and pieces of this fine, fine masterpiece during 90210 commercials but I have a feeling it will be on Oxygen on Sunday and TiVo WILL BE INVOLVED. Now if you’ll excuse me, there is a search I need to do on iTunes…

< end humiliation >

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