Friday, July 31, 2015

Driving Lessons

I hate it when people can't do whatever they went. Especially when they're behind the wheel. Whether I'm responsible or not, I feel like the grinch who stole Christmas. 

Take, for example, the young woman who was attempting a right turn in a residential neighborhood I frequent. Palming the steering wheel as she attempted her turn, the vehicle swung wide as she was unable to sufficiently corral the heavy tires and 19” wheels of her SUV with a single hand.

This because her remaining hand was tasked with keeping the all-important cell phone pressed against her ear.

I don't know if she was giving consent to have her mother taken off of life support or making an appointment at her favorite nail salon, but the call was clearly a critical one and demanded completion—whatever the cost.

It was fortunate that as a technology-bereft ancient, I was only driving and thus was able to brake, giving her the entire width of the roadway to complete a turn which should have required half that space.

None of this is especially unusual, given the six-hundred or so miles I put on every week in the course of my job. It is practically routine.

What was unusual was the reaction of Iona Apple.

Curious to see the face of my latest bout with motor vehicular negligence, I glanced at Ms. Apple as we passed and discovered that she was glaring at me

Dismissing the possibility that she was a scam artist upset that her plan for engaging a metropolitan bus in a head-on collision had failed, I realized I had exhibited the unforgivable gall of being there.

Yes, I had compromised her awesomeness. Her inalienable right to drive however poorly she needed to when it infringed upon her use of technology. She wasn't guilty of distracted driving; I was guilty of seeing it.

OK. Got it.

But despite the injured feelings, I admire this woman. Her addled priorities and twisted sense of causality are flawless. They are perfectly representative of twenty-first century America. 

Her phone call completed, civilization may now continue for another day. Or at least until the next incoming call.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Brutal Truth

In childhood, nightmares end when you wake up.

In adulthood, this is when they begin.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Sometimes, a Democrat's Best Friend Is a Republican

It's hard to believe Donald Trump once stood with Bill and Hillary Clinton as an avowed New York City Democrat. But times change, don't they? 

Utilizing the m.o. that built his real-estate empire, Trump is seeking the easiest path forward which will yield the great-possible reward. Which in this case is being President of the United States of America.

But the Donald knows better than to run as a Democrat. It's too tough. Too much is expected of you. You have to formulate policies and programs. Ideas are expected.

No, it's easier to run as a Republican where, thanks to the Tea Party, all you have to do is shoot your mouth off like you're the most obnoxious drunk in the bar and the very people Republicans manipulate best will crawl out from beneath their rock and praise you for being “real”.

Yes, rip your opponent(s) a new one for failing to be conservative enough and voila! The nomination is yours.

Fearing being left behind, the other candidates will then ramp up their rhetoric in the hopes that they, too, will compete. That they, too, will be seen as “real”.

So after appeasing the noisy minority who applauds this kind of politicking, the front-runner then find themselves confronted with a much larger and very different type of race.

It's as if after proving they can play "Chopsticks" better than anyone on the block, they then have to prove they're the leading particle physics researcher in the nation.

Thanks to the distorting influences of their right-wing, Republican presidential candidates find themselves ill-equipped to compete in a race which (still) demands so much more than put-downs and half-witted accusations and half-assed smears.

It's like quality control in reverse. Their own nominating process ensures the least-competitive Republican candidate will compete.

Not that I'm complaining.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Now Hiring

Hello. I'm La Piazza Gancio, President and founder of Total Business Solutions.

We understand that businesses large and small can get overwhelmed when it's time to make a critical hire. Many companies report receiving thousands of responses for a single opening, meaning their HR staffs are stuck wading through applications when they could be managing executive-level perks.

Fortunately, TBS has a solution.

Our software engineers have turned what were once profit-draining headaches into revenue streams. With FourChoice business software, job-seekers control their futures at the same time you rake in the cash!

It's true! Our clients have turned employment openings into profit centers, and they couldn't be happier!

So. How did they do it?

By embedding Total Business Solutions' FourChoice software into their job listings, businesses offer each and every candidate four options which lets them decide just how far their application goes. 

This means you can say goodbye to annoying and time-consuming calls from frustrated or even angry candidates wondering what's become of their resumes.

Here's how it works.

When a job-seeker has finished the application process, they are asked to choose from one of the following. (If finances don't permit, applicants can opt out and apply another time.)

Accepted—Our first level doesn't guarantee a submission will be considered, or even read. But it does guarantee his or her resume will pass through vocabulary scanners unmolested, even if they contain words and phrases such as 'union', 'organize' or 'state ownership'.

Only you know the Great Pyramid of Giza will be dust before it's looked at.

Cost: $10,000

Read—At this level, the job-seeker's resume will be looked at, but for no more than thirty seconds. Submissions of this type do occasionally catch the eye of decision-makers and receive consideration, but only with the frequency that fifth-round draft picks wind up in the Hall of Fame.

That will be our little secret. And who doesn't love a secret?

Cost: $25,000

Considered—This price point guarantees the job-seeker consideration from the appropriate department head. If it is determined that the candidate is worthy of further review, references will be required. This requires vetting (available for an additional fee) based on a per-reference basis.

Cost: $50,000

Sold!—For the candidate's first year's salary or one-hundred thousand dollars (whichever is greater), the job is theirs.

Cost: $100,000 (minimum)

Applicants will then be directed on how to make their non-refundable payment based on your businesses preferences. 

All you need to do from this point forward is sit back with your favorite administrative assistant and count the cash!

Yes, FourChoice protects you from inappropriate applicants in ways that screens, filters and personality profiles just can't. Our proprietary algorithms guarantee that only the most-talented, most-deserving and wealthiest candidates get the pot of gold at the end of your rainbow.

Furthermore, Total Business Solutions research shows that multiplied by the typical number of applications per opening, FourChoice can turn every vacancy into a revenue stream washing between one and two-million dollars your way!

And don't forget our newest option—The Veil of Obfuscation. The Veil (as we like to call it) allows you to accept up to twenty applicants at the Sold! level and then withdrawal the position—without any exposure to liability whatsoever!

The small print in our user agreement states openings are based solely on needs of the business and aren't guaranteed in the event of a downturn, slow-down or recession. It's completely legal and litigation-proof!

FourChoice is the business software that turns problems into profits. Give us a call and find out what we can do for you

Total Business Solutions. Anything else is total b.s.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

A Very Special Announcement

Here in the United States, it is Independence Day. The Fourth of July. The anniversary of the day we formally severed our relationship with England and created a democracy free of tyranny.

It is also the day retailers declare is the end of summer—the day they usher consumers on to the next big thing, which in this case would be Christmas.

So I ask you: what better day to announce that I will seek the Republican Party's nomination for the office of President of the United States of America?

Yes, I am the last but certainly not the least of the candidates to throw their hat into the ring. Only I won't be throwing mine. Recognizing its potential as a historical artifact, I'll be putting it up for auction on e-Bay.

This experience will prove valuable when I attempt to align my platform with the wishes of my wealthiest constituents in order to attract sizable campaign contributions. It may not be on e-Bay, but this will be a kind of auction as well.

So. What do I stand for?

I stand for traditional American values: wealth creation. Power. And no taxes—at least not for me. You, on the other hand, should be required to pay taxes because you are an economic drain on the country who receives everything for free.

I believe in keeping the American people anxious and afraid, the better to commit massive amounts of money to our military-industrial complex which will, in turn, fund my next campaign. One hand washing the other isn't merely a mutually-advantageous business and political model, it's a great leap forward in keeping America sanitary. 

And I believe strongly in a sanitary America.

I believe in being business-friendly. In creating an environment where business can thrive without the constraints and needless oversight of big government. In a global marketplace, business needs to be free to pursue the cheapest labor for the best-possible return on its investment. 

Sure, there may be collateral damage. That's just how it is. But if you don't want to lose your job, why did you find one in the first place?

There's a lot of talk out there about corporate accountability. Let me say this. Bhopal was in India, people. The only mess Union Carbide ever made here in the good ol' US of A was made of money!

It's those foreigners who screw everything up. Like BP. I'm glad they were fined for interfering with small business owners and what they do best, which is create jobs.

Now that small business owners have been freed from the destructive tyranny of foreign corporations, establishments like Larry's Fish Shack in Fort Morgan, Alabama (which hired a full-time cashier just last week) can continue to grow our economy.

This is what I'm talking about. Meaningful jobs being created every single day by small business. The road to economic recovery being paved and widened and given those reflective lane markings.

If elected, ladies and gentlemen, I can promise you this: this will be a road with no speed limits! No sir! Not on my watch! There will be nary a digit of government oppression!

Whew. OK.

Lastly, let me say that I believe in the elimination of social programs which coddle people and sustains their inability to be born wealthy, attend Harvard and become presidential candidates. Or five-hundred dollar-an-hour attorneys. Or hedge fund managers.

Yes, I believe everything is a choice. 

If you don't want to be poor and disadvantaged, choose a different womb! It's just that simple. If you choose to be born to a meth-smoking African-American prostitute, then that's on you, buddy. If you can't do a better job of being born, then do us all a favor and don't be. 


Finally, I want to say that while I indicated the previous bit was going to be the end of my speech, I am fully in favor of being flexible. Spontaneous. Off-the-cuff. I'm not one of those stiff, starch-y kind of candidates—unless my wife screws up the laundry. Heh heh heh. 

You would love to have a beer with me. Honest.

No, seriously. I just want to add that I treasure and respect the sanctity of life, in all its glorious shapes and forms and colors. And that we must never, ever take a human life until it has first passed through the birth canal.

Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for your time. God bless America.