Whatnot


Ain’t that a bitch?

People also like pictures.

People also like pictures.

imgres

Death was lying on the grass. I was out for a morning walk on the beautiful wide walkway running along South Miami Beach, listening to a podcast with headphones on, living in my own space when I was interrupted by death.

A man’s body, with a sheet not quite covering all of it. The right arm stuck out with the hand upturned and still. Still in an erie way that broadcast one thing: this soul is gone. The bottoms of his feet were also visible, the well worn soles of shoes that will walk no more.

A fire rescue vehicle was there and an attendant was by the dead man’s side. There was nothing for the fire department paramedic to do. He was waiting, for what I don’t know.

The dead man was homeless, all his worldly possessions in a plastic bag by his side. Close by, another fire rescue worker was talking with an elderly homeless man, I assume trying to get to the bottom of what happened.

I didn’t want to stop and gawk at this tragic scene. I kept walking and thought of a life lost. An anonymous dead man covered head to toe by a white sheet with an exposed dead hand reaching up to a beautiful morning blue sky. A fresh day full of possibilities for the living.

Who was he, this dead man?

He was someone’s child. What was his story, what were his hopes, dreams, ambitions, joys, disappointments and regrets? Who was he and how did he come to this unglamorous exit on a grassy area by a sidewalk by a beach? What was the life he lived and how was it processed in his head? Was he happy, sad, tortured, haunted or oblivious? Who woud remember him and how would he be remembered?

I’ll never know. Who could possibly know?

I walked by. Death in the morning is a hell of a wake up call.

How you’ll feel should ye be in need of a pint or two.

In the world’s greatest city, there is a bar worthy of hell.

A place that purports to be an Irish bar, but is instead an affront to anyone who has ever graced a barstool with their thirsty arse.

The joint is called Lilly O’Briens Irish Bar, on Murray Street just off West Broadway in the hip TrBeCa area of Manhattan. What follows are a list of its sins.

1. It is light and bright. I’m talking bright like if Stevie Wonder walked into the joint he’d say, “Dim it down, would you?!”

2. The place is littered with hi-def TVs playing sports, and many of the feeds are standard def. Look, Irish bars aren’t sports bars. End of discussion.

3. The Smithwicks was flat, and get a load of this, the place had Coors Light on draft! Lord help us all…

4. There was a pair of Muhammad Ali’s boxing trunks mounted in a glass case and hanging on the wall. What this was doing in an Irish Bar was a mystery.

5. Loud contemporary alt rock music was blaring on the sound system. Gotye is hardly the soundtrack for an Irish bar.

Bottom line, this place may be an O.K. sports bar, but it’s a hell of a lousy Irish Bar and should be sued for false advertising.

‘Twas enough to drive a man to drink– elsewhere.

He made us a playground but the bullies are taking over.

Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook is soon expected to have one billion members. But I think I see the problem with the whole social network thing. It’s people.

The power of social networking is connecting with people. It’s a wonderful way to share your life with others and re-kindle relationships. The problem is that some people also believe the social network is a political tool to broadcast their points of view and beliefs.

Facebook is like a playground where we children play, but more and more I’m seeing political bullies on the playground. Or religious bullies. Or any kind of bully who wants to broadcast their belief system to everyone who is their “friend.”

This will ultimately wear people down. People won’t go to the playground as often. In the next couple months leading up to the election, Facebook will be an intolerable place to be. Expect gang warfare.

What hath Zuckerberg wrought? Can I get a “like” here, people?

In case it got lost in the mail, which I believe is soon to be delivered two days a week between the hours of 1-4 PM, here is the official 2011 Scullin Christmas card wishing the best to you and yours from us and ours. The back of the card was written by son, Matt, or as we like to call him “the one standing on the right.” He did a great job. Enjoy and merry, happy.

The front of the card

Inside right of the card

Inside left of the card

Growing up in the late pocket of Baby Boomerdom, The Beatles were at the height of their popularity. The most common question of the day was, “Who’s your favorite Beatle?”

If your answer was John, you were an artsy rebel.
Paul, a cutesy pleaser.
If you chose George, you were the quiet loner.
And Ringo was, well, the goofy outsider.

When I was about 10, my best friend Joe would invite me and a couple other pals to his garage. He’d swipe a pack of his old man’s Raleigh cigarettes, which came with coupons for being a loyal smoker. Collect enough coupons, you could maybe get a new set of lungs.

We’d light up in his garage, wield badminton rackets as guitars and pretend that we were the Beatles, smoking ciggies and singing like in the movie A Hard Day’s Night. Now Joe, being our cordial host and supplier of smokes and the only one of us who could actually sing, Joe always picked John or Paul since those two did most of the singing. I would try to get whichever one he didn’t pick. BUT, if Ernie was there, well, Ernie would take second dibs on the basis of the fact he was much bigger than me and a bully– so as the old saying goes, “Might makes Lennon or McCartney.”

Which left being George or Ringo. My first choice of those was to be George. I was pretty awesome on lead badminton racquet, and I could muck my way through harmonies. Last choice was Ringo. Pretending to play drums with tree sticks was not so glamorous.

We’d smoke, we’d play, we’d sing. Back then, it seemed the pecking order of people I knew for favorite Beatle was #1- John, #2- Paul, #3- George and #4- Ringo. John and Paul were probably 80-90% of the picks.

George never really got his due. He was not the popular Beatle, but he did write some of the band’s greatest songs. Now Martin Scorsese will give George his due, and I for one am looking forward to it. I won’t be smoking or playing badminton racquet, but I will be missing Joe, who left the stage far too early, my youth and the innocence of days when “Who’s your favorite Beatle?” could bond you to damn near anyone.

So, do tell– who’s your favorite Beatle?

« Previous PageNext Page »