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Thursday, November 29, 2007

Journalists and the Sean Taylor story

Dan's the man. Read the LeBatard column about what 24/7 journalism has become, and how the death of Sean Taylor didn't necessarily bring out the best in the business. Everyone has a theory, and they are more than happy to share it with the world. We've become a nation of opinion-makers without the facts. Sounds like we've been watching too much CSI as well.
The worst are the comments posted online by website readers. I was appalled at some of the opinions. Please please tell me that these people are not a reflection of humankind.
But remember: what goes around comes around.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

How stupid can you get?

A Georgia man tried to open a bank account with a million dollar bill. It was fake, of course. The U.S. mint has never printed a bill for that amount. You would think the guy would do a little research before trying to pull a stunt like that.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Sean Taylor I knew

I delivered the bad news to my eldest son very early this morning: Sean Taylor had died. They had played football together at Gulliver and had kept up the friendship, speaking sporadically through Sean's rise in the athletic world.
Those who have blogged and written derogatory comments about Sean didn't know him. The Sean I met many times as a teenager was respectful, well-mannered and even soft-spoken. Yes, he was very intense on the field, but he was a good kid.
I feel so badly for his parents and his young family.

Monday, November 26, 2007

I was Scrooge for the weekend

I didn't do a lick of shopping this weekend. Not a one. Didn't battle crowds on Friday, didn't shop for bargains on Saturday, didn't open my wallet on Sunday. I'm so proud of myself.
The sales just aren't worth the crowds and the headaches. I think retailers have trained us to think that we're getting fantastic deals, but I'm not so sure that's true.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Bummed out for the holidays

If you're feeling a bit off kilter, you're not alone. A new poll shows the overwhelming majority of us are very worried about where our country is headed. We feel we've meandered off course. Isn't that the truth!
While I'm personally happy with my job and my family, I feel extremely anxious about the future, particularly for my children. The Prez has squandered the opportunity we had to really reshape the world after 9/11, and the economic situation at home isn't any better.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Reward money = hard feelings

Talk about being at the right place at the right time. Spradley, a homeless man who had made his way to South Florida from Las Vegas a few months back, was the person who picked up a hitchhiker, now accused of killing a cop. For his efforts Spradley received a $25,000 reward.
Happy ending? Not quite. The guy at the pawn shop where Spradley made the call to alert police is very unhappy that the reward wasn't split 50-50.
Where there's money, there's bound to be a squabble.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Failing -- once again -- to protect our children

A state inspector general's report has found that DCF has once again failed the most vulnerable of our society -- young children. Supervisors in DCF offices in Perrine and central Miami pressured their underlings to "close" cases prematurely so they could rank higher on the leader board. That meant case workers didn't even visit some of the children who were reportedly abused. Read Carol Marbin Miller's story to find out the results. It's hard for me to even write about what happened to these kids.
Those supervisors should face criminal charges. Throw the book at them. They're despicably inhumane.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Don't Tase me, bro

A Brevard County student got tased twice when he refused to stop fighting in school. Is that two times too much? I really can't tell from the initial reporting.
However, it seems that reports of police using Taser guns are on the rise. Hardly a week goes by without some story on it. I wonder if it's actually true that they're being used more -- or simply that we're reporting on them more. Mayber Tasers have become the media's story du jour.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Let Ricky play

Now that the NFL has given the green light allowing Ricky Williams to play, the Dolphins should give him a chance. The Fins can use all the help they can get.
But does Ricky deserve it?
Yep -- on one condition: he's assigned a chaperone, paid from his salary. Better yet, make his comeback a reality show. Proceeds can go to charity. Regardless of the outcome, his story may make a great lesson for wannabe athletes.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

How traditional should the turkey be?

Over the weekend a friend and I got into a debate about Thanksgiving, of all things. She's a real traditionalist and will not serve black beans and rice with her turkey, which is also seasoned the traditional way. She wants her Thanksgiving meal to be "typically American." I, on the other hand, adopt a mish-mash of dishes. Along with the black beans and rice, we serve yuca and avocados and three bean salad and, of course, stuffing. The deserts are just as eclectic -- pumpkin pie and flan. I think this is just as "typically" American, just more modern.

Friday, November 09, 2007

My vote for the OB and a UM Great

You know it's pretty sad that the venerable Orange Bowl is going to be demolished next year. This town doesn't care about history or tradition. It breaks my heart.
I grew up within walking distance of The Lady. I sold drinks in the stands, watched UM games, took my children there and attended various community events there as well. We've had UM season tickets forever. The first real outfits my brand new twin granddaughters wore were too-big UM cheerleading dresses. Sorry to see The Lady go but plan to buy as much memorabilia as I can afford.
My husband has a theory: The Dolphins haven't done squat since moving north to the "better" stadium. He predicts UM will follow in the Fins' unlucky steps. Not a comforting thought.
Now our esteemed sports commentator -- Greg Cote -- calls for reflection. He wants us to vote for the top UM players. Hubby will probably vote for The Mad Stork because he went to school with him at Hialeah High.
But why isn't Sean Taylor there?

Thursday, November 08, 2007

J-Lo -- Is she ready for motherhood?

You know what kind of world we live in when J -Lo's announcement of her pregnancy is banner news. Does it matter? Will it change my life, your life?
In any case, I hope she doesn't follow the footsteps of so many of her acting/dancing/singing peers. I hope she understands that a baby is not an accessory, one more accomplishment to brag about. Parenting is serious business.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Jenna vs. Rosie

I love our Book Fair, but I have a suggestion. Next time let Jenna Bush present right next to Rosie O'Donnell. You would have not only fireworks but an overflow crowd.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

2000 election recount: drama or comedy?

So Hollywood is making a movie based on the controversial 2000 presidential election recount. It's about time. That's a compelling story with wonderful narrative elements -- intrigue, politics, competition and power-grabbing.
My question: Is it drama or a comedy?
What happened in 2000 completely changed the path our country has taken and will adversely affect generations to come. Sadly, the outcome of the recount will prove to be one of the low points in U.S. history.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Rosie -- the answer to literary ho-hums?

You can say lots of things about Rosie O, but no one can ever proclaim she is boring. Having her open the Miami Book Fair is an interesting choice and one that will probably be controversial, not only because of her language and her views but also because the book fair usually has very literary figures during the weeknights leading to the street fair. Certainly Rosie is entertaining but not high brow.
But here's an idea for you: Rosie (and her book) may be the perfect person to spice up interest in an endeavor -- book-reading -- that is increasingly falling by the wayside. Too many people think of book-reading as unnecessary, slow, boring and something "others" do. Very sad.
Books can be about anything. They're not limited to the tomes we were assigned in high school. Maybe that's an idea that will ride the coattails of Rosie's appearance.

Friday, November 02, 2007

When good neighbors move away

Our neighbors moved yesterday, and we will miss them plenty. In a city that has lost much of its community flavor, we are lucky to live on a block that everybody pretty much knows everybody else. On vacation? Your neighbor will pick up mail and walk your dogs. Need a cup of sugar? Just knock on the door.
Our neighbors retired to The Villages in Ocala. Miami just got too much for them. Too expensive. Too much traffic. Too too, in other words. We read about people flocking here, but I wonder how many are pulling up stakes and leaving.
The amazing thing is that they sold their house in two days. Two days! Isn't there a housing slump or something?