Friday, November 30, 2007

hostage -- Clinton campaign office

Today, the Hillary Clinton Campaign Office in Rochester, NH became a crime scene. A man walked into the office on 28 N. Main St. saying that he had a bomb strapped to his chest. He also claimed to have mental health problems and that it would cost thousands of dollars to help him.

Leeland Eisenberg, a 47-year-old from nearby Somersworth, NH took those at the Clinton Campaign Office hostage, but let out a woman and her baby. That women ended up contacting the police. The SWAT team arived and another hostage was let free.

After more than 5 hours, the last of the four hostages was let go before Eisenberg came out of the office with his hands in the air and gave himself up to police and he is now in custody.

In a later press conference, Sen. Clinon said "it was a tense day." She also said that Eisenberg "was someone in need of help and sought attention in absolutely the wrong way."

Along with his mental health issues, Eisenberg was said to have had problems with his wife and family. She had filled for divorce stated ireconsilable differences. She along with neighbors said that he had a problem with alcohol and drugs. One neighbors also said "it was only a matter of time."

The bomb that was supposedly strapped to his chest were actually flares.

New York Presbetarian Hospital's Dr. Jeffrey Leiberman stated 3 reasons that people take hostages:

  • loss of a job

  • bad luck that they don't know how to deal with

  • mental issues

On another note, daredevil Evel Knievel passed away today at the age of 69. Many grew up wanting to be like him, many who are a lot older than I am. However, I too would have loved to be like him if my parents had only been willing to buy me a bike. Oh well.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

sexy -- kristen's sexiest man alive

sex·y [‘sek-sē] - adj
generally attractive or interesting (m-w)

I've been working on this since Sunday and I finally get to post it since word and blogger have decided to cooperate at the same time.

The other week People magazine came out with their 'Sexiest Man Alive' and all the runner-ups. Now another year goes by where I don't agree with their findings. It really shouldn't bother me but these guys are only sexy in the eyes of those who work at People. That's right, nobody in the public gets to vote and maybe that contributes to the fact that the 'Sexiest Man Alive' maybe be hot, but not the hottest. Thus I have decided to devote this post to coming up with my own list. True it is no real accomplishment since practically everyone has no idea who I am, but still.

I know this comes as no surprise. He was one of the runner ups in People's 2005 list, and hasn't surfaced again till this year when he was pegged as one of the sexy men in the 40s category. I guess that's better than nothing, but here's he's number one. Yes, the top honor goes to none other than that anchor that I make sure to get home by 5 p.m. to watch, Anderson Cooper. Perhaps it's that gray hair, or those blue eyes, but I'm not the only one who feels this way. Tim Gunn says that Anderson Cooper is his sexiest man alive. Although Tim Gunn would also pick Mr. Cooper as his leading man if given the chance. But hey, I would too. Whatever the little reason for liking Anderson Cooper are Seth Meyers put it nicely in a Saturday Night Live Skit where he acted as the host of Anderson Cooper 360°.

"See the news reflected in the shimmering blue pools that are my eyes."
Nicely put.
And now onto the 13 runner ups. In no particular order, other than alphabetical here they are. (and yes I know it gets all weird later on and the words and pictures are close together, but no matter how many times i hit enter, it doesn't change)

One of the stars of one of the best comedy shows around, Zach Braff plays Dr. Dorian on Scrubs.

Jim Carrey. I can't even count how many movies he's been in and neither do I feel like doing that, but my favorite was probably Bruce Almighty...though I did like the look of Count Olaf in a Series of A Unfortunate Events.

Now I don't know why I like a lot of middle aged men who have their own television shows that are either news or somewhat news related, but for some reason I am quite a big Stephen Colbert fan. And that's not just a fan of The Colbert Report, but Colbert himself. Lucky Jane Fonda who’s kissed him quite a few times.

Now here I have to agree with People, I don't think he's the sexiest guy on the face of the earth, but Matt Damon is definitely up there. Now in the past I would have said he wasn't the best looking guy around (perhaps that's just me though), but upon all the Bourne movies, he really cemented his hotness.

And here again I agree ( I think there's only one more though). No matter who Johnny Depp acts as, he looks good. Well, maybe will the exception of Willy Wonka. I did indeed like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but he just looked a little too feminine. I think the best, Captain Jack Sparrow.

If anyone were to ask me what I spent this past Friday night doing, I would have to say watching the Man vs. Wild marathon on the Discovery Channel. Hosted by the man himself Bear Grylls, every episode is one that I love. And what’s even better, the fact he can be covered in mud and still looks great.

Jake Gyllenhaal, the guy with one of the hardest names to spell. He's the last person here that was also one of the runner ups on the People list. I remember seeing him on the Daily Show not long ago and his personality, so wonderful.

Another Discovery Channel guy to make my list. Matt Johnston was one of the two thieves turned television show hosts on the show It takes a Thief. Quite a fitting name. This ex-thief is now a school teacher, how cute.

Here, the son of Gene Simmons, Nick Simmons who was no noticeable resemblance to his father. And to be honest, I am quite glad about that.

Last seasons Project Runway winner, Jeffrey Sebelia owns Costa Nostra and has made some truly remarkable articles of clothing. In my eyes the best was the yellow plaid dress from the Couture De Jour episode.

Why on earth NBC canceled the Black Donnelly’s, I do not know. I really liked it, and I really like Jonathan Tucker who was one of the many main characters, Tommy Donnelly.

Long ago he Jess on Gilmore Girls and more recently Peter Petrelli on Heroes, Milo Ventimiglia A while ago he was in YM’s 20 hottest guys, back when he was on Gilmore Girls and he apparently isn’t the bay boy that he looks like.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

politics -- CNN/Youtube republican debate

I'm not really one to side with the Republicans, but I'm not sure that I side with the Democrats right about now either. This afternoon I watched the CNN/Youtube Republican Debate. It was mostly because Anderson Cooper was the moderator and who wouldn't want to see 3 hours of him.

Since the public sent in their own questions there were bound to be some good ones and the crew did a great job at picking them out. I'll admit that I didn't pay much attention throughout the debate at first because I was reading the newspaper and eating ice cream, but after all that I payed full attention. One question caught my eye.

Blogger's not cooperating with me so I can't upload the video but click here to watch it.

Retired U.S. Army Brigadier General Keith Kerr is openly gay. He was in the Army for 43 years and after retiring he came out. His question was professionalism of homosexuals in the military.

None of the candidates answered the question which annoys me a bit, but I know that happens a lot in debates. Congressman Hunter said that majority of people in the are of conservative values and views, so gays and lesbians go against go against their principles. And that's apparently why they shouldn't be allowed in the military.

I liked when Anderson asked Brig. Gen. Kerr if the candidates answered his question and he said no. I think he had a lot of good points to make, one being that 2 people are discharged everyday not because of misconduct but because they are gay. These are the "doctors, nurses, pilots, surgeons" that are let go just because of their life choices.

All the conservatives think there should be no gays in the military, or for that matter none at all, but you can't just weed them out. If they hide it no one would know and they could life the same life as someone who is straight.

Maybe I'm just open-minded, but I don't see the problem. No matter what your profession there are going to be some people who and homosexual and some that are not. And, no matter what your profession is there are going to be people who are professional and not. Your sexuality doesn't determine your professionalism and just because some conservatives in the military are against that sort of thing doesn't mean that gays and lesbians should be cut from service all together. Like I said, some are going to be unprofessional but many of them are going to be just like everyone else. If you're going to discharge people it should be for things like misconduct, not just because you disagree with their lifestyles.

On another note, abortion was bound to come up between these pro-life men. Yes, abortion is bad, but I think there are some circumstances where it is okay. Actually I came up with a whole plan about it.

If you're going out and sleeping with every guys you know, abortion shouldn't be allowed, but in the case of rape victims it should. To be sure that the girl is really a rape victim and not someone who is just abusing the option of having an abortion police reports would need to be made. Then you can have the abortion and more of the unreported sexual crimes would be reported. But if you wait till the abortion would be considered partial-birth or late-term then the option should not be given. I know there are a lot of flaws in my plan but at least I answered the question unlike many of the candidates, especially Gov. Romney who seemed to avoid answering just about every question.

If you want to watch the entire debate or the catchy little jingle about it, click on the picture at the top of the post.

safe -- toy recalls

safe ['sāf] - adj
free from harm or risk (m-w)

With all the recalls of products from China lately, many are steering towards U.S. made toys. Is that really safer though?

Majority of the toys in America are from China, so it'll prove to be a challenge this holiday season. An article by Jayne O'Donnel and Mindy Fetterman of USA Today think otherwise. The article is full of statistics which I'm picking a few and writing them below for you.

-80% of toys sold in the United States are imported from China.

-Most recalls are due to design problems and not manufacturing problems.

-In 2006, CPSC said that there were 40 recalls for toys made in the U.S.

-In the same study it was found that 70% of recalls were for toys made in China.

-From October 1, 2006 until this past week, recalls for toys made in China have jumped to 88%.

Toys made anywhere in the world are bound to have recalls at some point. Perhaps if the United States checked the toys that came into the country things would be different. But, the U.S. does nothing of the sort. Now, many are turning to toys that are made in America. If they are indeed safer, toys made here don't necessarily grab the attention of kids compared to toys that are made elsewhere. Most of the toys made here are simple like "blocks or puzzles." Most parents don't want to take a risk, so perhaps kids wont be as entertained this Christmas...?

Friday, November 23, 2007

suicide -- rat poison

su·i·cide [so’o i sid] - n
killing yourself: the act of deliberately killing yourself

The Shanghai Daily newspaper reported last Sunday that six people died after a dumpling soup accident. Chen Ruyan who worked at a recycling station in Hubei and also sold rat poison was preparing lunch on afternoon. The paper reported “Chen found the rice dough he was preparing for making rice dumplings was quite watery and he decided to add more rice flour.

Unfortunately, he mistook rat poison that had been placed together with other condiments as flour and mixed it into the dough.” Investigators said that Ruyan had put the rat poison in his kitchen upon coming home.

And all this while “China is in the middle of a nationwide campaign to improve food and product safety after a string of international scares that have tainted its export reputation,” as reported by Sky News.

Yes, I know that this isn’t really suicide since it as far as we know, it wasn't intentional. But, I couldn't think of any other real word to use since I know it's not murder. Regardless, I think we all need to either not keep the chemicals in the kitchen or put them away and make sure that we don't just leave them on the counter next to the food. I think this is a goodlife lesson.

Read labels, please.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

thankful -- happy thanksgiving!

thank·ful [ˈthaŋk-fəl] - adj
expressive of thanks (m-w)

Many people have to think hard of something to be thankful for on Thanksgiving. However, Eva Betts doesn't have think to hard. Betts has been working at the Cosentinos Market in Brookside, MO for over a decade. An excellent worker, Manager Mark Lenz also describes her good nature. "When she's done working 40 to 50 hours here, she goes to the hospital and donates her time to children and the elderly."

An elderly man, Carl Hanzeilious had been coming to the grocery store for a while and Betts had always greeted him and would help him out. He lived alone and she wanted him to know that someone cared. "As the years went on, he became gradually disabled. I would help him shop for his groceries and just visit. And when he got sick, I'd go visit him at St. Luke's Hospital and cheer him up a little bit."

The two had grown close and Hanzeilious recently passed away. Little did Betts know, Hanzeilious had left her a $15,000 check for her hospitality. She recently received a letter from the bank and was shocked. But, for those who work with Betts, it is no surprise.

Hanzeilious is "a man she says she'll never forget." (kctv5)

Due to what everyone has to say about Ms. Betts, she in my mind deserves this without a doubt. I wish that we all knew someone like her or at least had something to be thankful for. Don't get me wrong, there's something that we all can be thankful for, but something that comes to mind quickly.

I guess I'll share what I'm thankful for. I'm thankful for all the wonderful people in my life that I can turn to with any mishaps, but that's probably no surprise. I'm also thankful for my family, no surprise there either. I think mostly I'm glad that I have the life I'm currently living, that I have the opportunity to attend college and to do most of the things that I really want to do. I know that sometimes I really hate my life, especially when I'm disappointed in myself, but that fact that I can be disappointed in myself is nice, in a sense. I'm thankful too for knowing what exactly I want to do with my life and being able to think about the things I do now and how they'll affect my future. Perhaps it's a little optimistic and it'll never allow me to become an existentialist, but I like knowing exactly where I want to be each year or my life, within reason. And thanks Brad, for being the one who seems to consistently read this.

And by the way,


Monday, November 19, 2007

unlucky -- darren swanson

un·luck·y [un lúkee] - adj
having bad luck: not experiencing good luck

This is just sad. A report by 1010 Wins, was posted Saturday, November 17, 2007 about a guy and his misfortunes. Darren Swanson, a 21-year-old from Bridgeport, CT was shot in the face Friday by a group of strangers. Somehow he managed to drive himself to the Bridgeport Hospital Emergency Room, err rather drive himself into the Bridgeport Hospital Emergency Room. No one was injured but the windows were shattered and the door damaged. It was later reported by a police spokesman, that Swanson was in fair condition. But then, Swanson’s day gets even worse. In his wrecked car, the police found marijuana; thus he was charged with possession of marijuana.

We’ve all had bad days, but most times, if not all times, they aren’t as bad as Swanson’s day. Some people do have days worse than that, and my regards to them, but for the rest of us, we better just stop pitying ourselves because it really can be worse. Lately I’ve been telling myself that however sorry my life is, it really could be worse. I could be one of those 3,000 plus people in Bangladesh that have lost their life due to the cyclone. Or perhaps even worse, I could be one of the many that are still alive, but are stuck with the grief of having lost their home, their family, and everything that they had. I’ve never lost my family or been homeless or had to search for dead bodies. I’ve never been shot in the face or shot at all for that matter or been arrested. So I guess my life really isn’t that bad, it’s pretty darn good.
MORAL: It could be worse.

And I just have to add a little to the last post. Some blogger recently posted that Megan Meier ( the girl who committed suicide) “had it coming.” That is just disgusting, saying that an innocent girl deserves to be dead. That sick person even code named herself with my name. I am ashamed.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

cyber-bullying -- myspace suicide

cy·ber·bul·ly·ing [ˈsī-bər ˈbu̇-lē iŋ] - v
the use of e-mail, instant messaging, chat rooms, pagers, cell phones, or other forms of information technology to deliberately harass, threaten, or intimidate someone. (

How amazing it is that with all the talk of cyberbullying nowadays, it proves almost imposible to find the definition. If you look at any of the dictionaries, there is nothing. The pronunciation is pretty hard to come by too. In this age of technology where majority of teens and young adults have MySpace or Facebook, cyberbullying is something that everyone who engages in such activities is prone to.

It always seems that at first, you're set on the idea that you wont add anyone that you don't know, blah blah blah. But, within time you let your guard down and you add people that you have no relation to for one reason or another. I'll admit I did that, there's probably only a couple people on my friends list on MySpace that I actually don't know (other than the bands).

I think I'm going to try out something new. Rather than the normal write about whatever happens to pop in my head around the time a see fit to blog, I'm going to pick a news story or something of the sort that interests me. I still want to define the word at the top since for some reason that entertains me, but I'd like to try and report on a story and get in that habit. And hopefully since the news never stops, I'll always have something to write about.

Now onto todays installment on cyberbullying. This past Friday's Anderson Cooper 360° really caught my eye. I must say that I normally have a very hard time watching when Soledad O'Brien is the host, but I was really interested that day and the emotion that she added to the story made it all the better. Gary Tuchman did a peice which they titled "Deadly Cyberbullying - MySpace Suicide." Perhaps that is what pulled me in.

More than a year ago, thirteen-year-old Megan Meier's parents allowed her to make a MySpace page under their supervision. All seemed well, and she even made a friend, his name was "Josh Evans." The two hit it off and commented each other constantly, he often commented on how beautiful she was and how lucky he was to know someone like her. Within time, Megan's parents Ron and Tina Meier's parental instinct kicked in. They began to wonder about this fellow that their daughter spent all her time talking to. Tina Meier went to the cyber crimes department of the local police station to see if there was any way to find out if Josh was actually a real person. No such luck.

One day, all hell broke loose. Megan and Josh got in a huge fight. Ron Meier stated in an interview on 360 with Gary Tuchman that Josh had even said " the wold would be a better off place without you and have a shitty rest of your life." Upon that she went to her mom for consolidation. However, her mom was mad too, but at the language that Megan was using and that Megan didn't sign off when told to. Megan, who had suffered from depression since the third grade was infuriated and ran off to her room.

Soon, things seemed all too quiet. Mrs. Meier went up to check on their daughter when Mr. Meier heard a "bloodcurdling scream." His wife had found Megan hanging by a belt from her closet. Her parents cut the belt to get their daugher down and following that performed CPR. The next morning Megan Meier was pronounced dead.

Upon returning home from the hospital Ron Meier wanted to find out who this Josh fellow, who in a round about way killed their daughter, was. Josh Evan's MySpace page had been deleted. A month later, a neighbor told them who Josh Evans really was, and that "he" was even at Megan's funeral. The reality of it was, Josh Evans was just the creation of a woman that lived down the street. The woman made the profile to befriend Megan and try and find out information on a dispute between Megan and her own daughter. In a police report, the lady even acknowledged this. Tina and Ron Meier went to speak with the mother who "loaded the gun" for their daughter to kill herself. The response they were given, "give it a rest."

According to the County Prosecutor's Office (CPO), the County Sherriff's Office, and the FBI, there's nothing that can be done. Megan had struggled with depression and didn't have to kill herself. Recently the CPO told CNN that they would review the case.

When I first heard the story I thought that the woman should be charged with something, I don't know what though. She was the one who made Megan so depressed that she bumped herself off. She knew that the girl had a history of depression and the conversations with "Josh Evans" made her happy. It's sick that someone would do that and in the end just say "give it a rest." I'm pretty darn sure that if the situation was the other was around she wouldn't be giving it a rest. But now, I may have changed my mind on the outcome of this.

I guess simply this could be the case of person A making person B so depressed that they commit suicide. That happens quite often. There are many cases of people who break up with their significant other and can't or just wont try to get through life after that. I hate to use it as an example but Carter Cooper makes a good one and he's the first that comes to mind. In situations like this there is nothing that can be done. If A and B were engaged the courts could do something about it, before B commits suicide. In Business Law I remember learning that an engagement is essentially a leagally binding contract, as crazy as it sounds you can be sued for breaking it. That's probably the only time that the courts would get involved in those messy relationship cases.

As much as I'd like there to be justice for the Meier family, I don't see it happening anytime soon if ever. Their lawyers told them to be quite, but as you can tell, they're not. As Gary Tuchman said, "maybe [their] story could help the welfare of another child."