Right out of the oven:

Teen prankster bumps into World’s Grumpiest Gun-owner during ill-timed toilet-papering...Rick Tenan goes from 60 to 0 in one second, illustrating Reason #785 to never go hang-gliding…Wallace the pit bull goes on injured reserve for the 11th Annual Purina Incredible Dog Challenge’s Frisbee event after, ahem, eating spatula…Rattlesnake takes up residence in mailbox, provides mailman with all-expenses paid trip to hospital…Police looking for piece-of-garbage thief instead find piece-of-garbage child-sex-predator in actual garbage…”Cheeta” the (illegal) monkey lands owner in jail after being discovered while riding bitch during routine traffic stop…And finally, Mr. Johnson makes unexpected appearance on Survivor, angering the 2 people who still watch Survivor.

Truly trivial observations of the week:

John McCain and Sarah Palin, as well as their more conservative supporters (otherwise known as lunatics), have been telling me recently that Barack Obama is a terrorist because his name sounds like “Osama.” (Cue audio track: crickets, crickets, and more crickets…)

The same people are telling me that, because he wants to raise taxes on 5% of Americans and cut taxes for the remaining 95% so there is some balance between who pays the collective bills around here, he is somehow a Socialist. While The Cupcake normally tries to avoid tactless statements like “I doubt Sarah Palin could clearly articulate what Socialism is even if she had a political science textbook in front of her”, I have to say, I doubt Sarah Palin could clearly articulate what Socialism is even if she had a political science textbook in front of her.

Let's get some things straight about Obama: He is not a terrorist. He is not a Muslim. He is not a Socialist. He is not a radical. He is not related to Saddam. If you make less than $250,000 a year, he is not going to raise your taxes. He is not part of the Rebel Alliance. He is not radioactive. He is not the 16th "Named" storm of the 2008 Hurricane Season. He is not a fugitive from the planet Krypton. He is not a Pod. He is not going to run America into the ground (unlike some people I can immediately think of).

Moving on...
The Cupcake is very bummed out about Paul Newman. There aren’t enough people like him in the world. Salad dressing. Race cars. Philanthropy. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Cool Hand Luke. The Hustler. The Color of Money. Vanity Fair published this brilliant article just before Newman passed.

Speaking of disappointment...
Whenever I visit downtown Decatur, GA, it boggles my mind that people go there to burn life’s most precious commodity; time. Other than the killer Nathalie’s Fish House and the truly remarkable Café Lily, Decatur is quite the void: lots of middle-aged yuppies that take themselves way too seriously (think “Stuff White People Like”), restaurants that take themselves way too seriously, shops that take themselves way too seriously – I swear, even the squirrels look like they take themselves way too seriously. It’s all very superficial and very perplexing.

By the way...

Ignoring the obvious election sketches, is it my imagination or is Saturday Night Live on the ascent recently? That Andy Samberg-Mark Wahlberg thing was ridiculous. And, I can’t even think about MacGruber without laughing my ass off…
You should check out:
The Cupcake just returned from a trip to San Francisco…the music haul was impressive: The Germans clocked in with Cape Fear; a visit to Rasputin’s yielded the used find of 2008 ($5!): The Orb Live ’93 double-disc set – headphones required; underrated Factory Records alums A Certain Ratio represented with double-disc retrospective Early; and the flavor of the month, The Lovetones, were the steal of the trip ($1!!!) with Meditations.

(14) Comments

  1. dystemper909 On October 20, 2008 at 3:11 PM

    I agree with the Decatur thing completely! You can cut the pretension with a knife over there. Each and every time I end up there (mostly because Stacie like "Feast" and Cooper Sancez always has his art exibitions there) I feel like punching people in the face right before eating (that was my attempt at a segue).

    Speaking of punching people in the face right before eating, I also think that SNL is on the ascent. So far, my favorites have been the MacGruber skits with Shia LaBoeuf and the Andy Samberg/Mark Wahlberg skit. I also like the one with Michael Phelps and Kristen Wiig as the ugly, dorky teenagers. I think that it has something to do with Seth Meyers being the head writer. That guy was always underrated, in my never-to-be-humble opinion.

    And congrats to the Cupcake!

    Jonathan On October 21, 2008 at 6:35 AM

    Howdy John. I googled "Thomas Jefferson quotes" the other day and was scared by how opposite his beliefs were from those of Obamas'. Which direction is our country heading when we take the fruits of one persons' labor and give them to someone else? Palin may be a fool, but I can't support a candidate who thinks it is the job of a government, who works for us, to take away a persons earned money and distribute it as they see fit. I heard a guy on the radio (you know what show) who said he was voting Obama so he could get more refund checks. If I made 250k, which I certainly don't, I would want to choose how I donate my money. I think people lose sight of the fact that most successful people in America were not made that way overnight. When our grand and great grandparents came here, they were not given anything by government. They also were not successful by todays standards. However, after multiple generations of working, their progeny are successful. I think it is disrespectful to those hard-working Americans from past generations to penalize their descendants because they make a lot of money. 95% of the "bill" that is paid by America is paid by 5 % of the population. I don't think that needs to be weighted any more on the rich.

    Did you hear the Howard Stern show where they went on the streets of Harlem, asked people for whom they were voting, and after the obvious answer of Obama was given they asked why not Mccain. These people said, "I don't like his policies", "He is uneducated", and other comments that could be misconstruued as pertinent. Then, they asked these Obama supporters if they supported Obamas positions of being Anti-stem cell research, leaving our troops in Iraq, cutting taxes on corporations, and, lastly, CHOOSING SARAH PALIN as a running mate. They all answered, yes, I support Obama. It is sad to me that this vote counts the same as mine.

    I see a lack of logic in his policies. If I were a company who provided a service or product for a certain amount of money, and therefore made a certain amount of profit, then the government started taxing me more, I am going to raise the price on my product or service to maintain the same amount of profit. How does it make any sense that taxing corporations will help the little man? I feel like people have jumped on the Obama wagon and don't actually think about what his ideas mean or their consequences. He is young, good-looking, and a hell of a speaker. If he spoke German,and I had no idea what he was saying, I would probably support him, because he is so convincing. I feel that someone as enthusiastic and convincing as Obama makes itunfair for uneducated people to make a good choice. It is easy to win an election on the premise that if you're unhappy vote for me and I'll change that. Scary times.

    I guess we'll see what happens when he's elected. I predict a four and out just like the Cincinnati Bengals. I miss our late night discussions at the MT tavern. Mazel Tov on the wedding. I'd like to close with this Jefferson quote.
    "I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them. "
    -Thomas Jefferson

    The Smoking Cupcake On October 21, 2008 at 8:30 AM

    Rebuttal to Jonathan:

    I guess I'll say a few things about your notions on the tax structure and my impressions of Obama's plan...I certainly don't believe in "income redistribution" - that is a nice 50 cent phrase thrown around by people like FOX News to get people like you riled up...The bottom line is that, as part of the Top 25% tax bracket, I pay MORE of my salary (16%) than someone making between $155,000 and $388,000 per year, the Top 2-5% of the tax bracket. They are only paying 12% of their income in taxes. If that's not unfair enough, those falling in the Top 50% tax bracket ($31,000 per year and LESS) STILL have to pay 14% of their income in taxes! What's more is that, overall, when you average all the tax brackets out, the overall percentage of income that is taxed in this country is a paltry 12%! Now, Jonathan, I love you, but why are the two hardest hit sectors of the income well in this country paying MORE than the average when they have LESS money to give? That makes no sense. I am a big proponent of the flat tax and I still don't understand why that's not the rule, however, until that happens, that statistics bare out that Obama's plan is the most equitable - pay your fair share or go home and stop riding my ass. I'm also not sure where you got that "95% of the bill is paid by the Top 5%" - that's simply not true. In reality, its about 60% - which I would agree is too high, however, until the playing field is evened FOR EVERYONE it will remain askew. Since you didn't cite any stats, and since I've noted a lot here, I thought I should provide my source; straight from the IRS:

    http://www.taxfoundation.org/news/show/250.html (data only available through 2006, however, the trends are consistent if you examine the data)

    To your point about the electorate and their level of being informed...all I can say is that man-on-the-street interviews with Howard Stern are about as trustworthy a source as taking a straw poll of supporters at a McCain-Palin rally - I've heard just as disheartening things there as the Howard Stern example you cite. In fact, they've been much more inflammatory... it's sad to me that their votes count as much as mine. I'd rather have uninformed people voting b/c of a united heritage opposed to a bunch of loud-mouthed bigots that can't separate fact from fiction or consider the color of one's skin an automatic reason to not vote for the candidate.

    SteveJones On October 21, 2008 at 9:36 AM

    Hey Cupcake:

    The conservatives who are bringing up absurdities like "Osama" and "Obama is a terrorist" are not the mainstream McCain supporters. No responsible pundit is saying any of these things. These fringe people are no more representative of their party preference than, say, the bums that ACORN is dragging off the street to vote Democrat.

    But one question: How do you cut taxes on 95 percent of Americans when that number exceeds the percentage that actually pay taxes in the first place? A "cut" implies a reduction in the taxes being paid. So if someone doesn't pay any taxes, but gets a check from the federal government anyway, it's not a "cut." It's a handout, a welfare check. Obama is taking money from one person (the one who earned it) and giving it to another person (the one who didn't earn it). And you're complaining about the "socialism" label? What do you call that, if not socialism?

    In his exchange with Joe the plumber, Obama said he wants to "spread the wealth around." First, it's not Obama's money to spread around. But second, that's pure socialism in a nutshell. What other conclusion can we draw?

    Also, the "I'm only taxing people who make $250,000" is a big shell game. A business owner getting socked by higher taxes is going to pass that expense on to the consumers -- you and me. We'll end up paying that tax increase in higher costs.

    Of course, on the other hand, that business owner may opt to lay off employees instead. That'll be just super for the economy. Punishing the job-creating sector always pays, doesn't it?

    Honestly, it doesn't take a Sarah Palin to figure this stuff out.

    SteveJones On October 21, 2008 at 9:38 AM

    "... or consider the color of one's skin an automatic reason to not vote for the candidate."

    Hey, are you talking about Colin Powell?

    The Smoking Cupcake On October 21, 2008 at 10:10 AM

    Rebuttal to Steve Jones:

    As with most Republicans, you offer no statistics, no citations for your claims and zero compelling reasons why anyone should take what you say at your word (other than a lot of 50 cent scare tactics - "He's a SOCIALIST!").

    I'm not even sure you know what Socialism is...I mean, if you did surely you would have brought up the fact that in the last 2 months George W. Bush and the most conservative, free-market-economy-friendly administration in 35 years has just systematically SOCIALIZED our entire banking industry. By your logic, I assume the Bush tax cuts were Socialist too, thus making Bush a Socialist, since, of course, wealth was redistributed under those cuts as well - it just went to a select few sectors instead of "around"...oh wait, that's FASCISM, my mistake.

    Adding insult to injury, you tarnish Colin Powell's well-reasoned (as well as well-documented) logic in throwing his support behind Obama by dumbing his decision-making process down to the same sort of decision-making far-right wing bigots from the Republican party engage in. The same sort you started off trying to distance yourself from...

    I'm sure there are wonderful adult education classes in your area offering Philosophy 101, Intro to Logic, etc. so you can brush up on your skills.

    Anonymous On October 21, 2008 at 12:09 PM

    Hey- this is Cooper. I dig Decatur and plan another show there. Dig the vibe, Smoking Cupcake. Seems like you're taking yourself a little too serious, too.

    SteveJones On October 21, 2008 at 12:34 PM

    First, I think common sense and reason are more than enough to reject Obama's "soak the rich" scheme. I'm not trotting out a bunch of charts like Ross Perot to make my point. Everything I've said is self-evident: If you tax business, business will pass on the higher cost. Good grief, am I wrong about this? (I suppose I could produce a bunch of Cato Institute numbers, but you probably wouldn't buy them anyhow.)

    Second, you are right about Bush. I won't defend him. But he's only given us socialism LIGHT. We'll get the full-strength version with Obama and his Democratically controlled Congress.

    Third, nothing Powell said sounds anything like logic. McCain is a moderate, like Powell. The only apparent reason I can see for Powell's decision is that he wants to vote for a brother. I can understand that ... I really can. But let's cut the crap.

    Fourth, I don't see a preponderance of bigots in the GOP -- I really don't. I do see plenty in the party of Wallace, Faubus and Maddox, though. I'll reference Biden's amazement that there was an "clean" and "articulate" black man (Obama) in Congress. I'll further reference the Democratic support of afirmative action and minority set-asides, which assume that minorities can't compete with white people on their own. The left's tenderer-than-thou concern for minorities is so fraudulent.

    Fifth, the adult logic course was full. I signed up instead for "Liberalism in America: A Case Study in Political Derangement."

    Seriously though, I can find plenty of logical screw-ups in your posts: ad hominem, poisoning the well, e.g. I'm just too gracious to point them out.

    The Smoking Cupcake On October 21, 2008 at 1:23 PM

    Rebuttal to Steve Jones:

    I would be more than willing to look at any statistics you threw my way to have as well-rounded an opinion about the tax-issue as possible. That you keep giving me your own personal "common sense" and "reason" is a major flaw in your argument.

    Colin Powell in his own words:


    In case you don't want to sift through it, here are the "logical" comments he made about his decision:

    "I have said to Mr. McCain that I admire all he has done. I have some concerns about the direction that the party has taken in recent years. It has moved more to the right than I would like to see it, but that’s a choice the party makes." (Absolutely correct - even Richard Nixon is rolling in his grave over the way the Republican Party has been hijacked)

    "In the case of Mr. McCain, I found that he was a little unsure as to deal with the economic problems that we were having and almost every day there was a different approach to the problem. And that concerned me, sensing that he didn’t have a complete grasp of the economic problems that we had. And I was also concerned at the selection of Governor Palin. She’s a very distinguished woman, and she’s to be admired; but at the same time, now that we have had a chance to watch her for some seven weeks, I don’t believe she’s ready to be president of the United States, which is the job of the vice president."

    "I watched Mr. Obama and I watched him during this seven-week period. And he displayed a steadiness, an intellectual curiosity, a depth of knowledge and an approach to looking at problems like this and picking a vice president that, I think, is ready to be president on day one. And also, in not just jumping in and changing every day, but showing intellectual vigor. I think that he has a, a definitive way of doing business that would serve us well."

    "And I’ve said to Barack Obama, “I admire you. I’ll give you all the advice I can. But I’m not going to vote for you just because you’re black. We, we have to move beyond this." (BINGO)

    I love it when people point out aberrations in any movement, etc...nice work. You're right, the politicians you identified were indeed bigots AND Democrats. You get the Gold Star for the day. Unfortunately, none of them have been attending McCain rallies and trying to incite violence or going on the record as saying they're voting against him because of his race. The documentary evidence that the Republican party, especially the far-right wing, is a harbor of bigotry is overwhelming. That you dispute this point is even more overwhelming (and disturbing). And while we're making assumptions, thanks for assuming I'm a bleeding heart simply because I'm out here calling bullshit on some fairly serious points.

    In an effort to meet you half-way, I can understand why you don't like:

    - Nancy Pelosi (can't stand her)
    - Affirmative Action (got to be a better way + it IS patroinizing)
    - Hand-outs (who doesn't feel taken advantage of?)
    - Illegal Immigration (free rides should not be allowed)
    - Cuba
    - Venezuela
    - Iran
    - North Korea

    And for the record, I do like:
    - The military (its a disgrace what the Bush Administration has done to it - we need to take MUCH better care of it and give these boys the tools they need to fight instead of a defense budget loaded with R&D that costs everyone WAY too much)
    - The Death Penalty
    - Flat Tax
    - Fiscal Conservatism
    - Smaller Government

    If you have problems with any of my other blogs, by all means, point them out. I do this to become a better writer, not to force an agenda on people (you sought me out) - I've written plenty of positive things about McCain and plenty of negative things about Clinton...and a lot of blogs that don't have anything to do with politics.

    SteveJones On October 21, 2008 at 1:51 PM

    Cupcake, if I've made some rash assumptions about you, I'll own up to that. I've jumped to a conclusion or two over the years. No doubt, I've done that here.

    And yes, smearing you with Wallace and company isn't fair, either. My apologies.

    I still believe the problem of white racism in the GOP and our society at large is grossly overinflated. Maybe it's there, but I rarely see it on display. (Can I be blamed for what I simply don't see?) This seething cauldron of white racism that we hear is always ready to boil over ... like I said, I rarely witness it except in a few disreputable fringe kooks here and there. And all of these "he's using code for 'black man'" accusations smack of paranoid, bogeyman stuff.

    If I were all-knowing, I would expect to discover that far, FAR more people are voting for Obama because he's black than are voting against him for that reason. But we'll never know either way for sure.

    The "inciting of violence" at McCain rallies appears to be bogus, by the way. The reporter couldn't find anyone to corroborate his story. On the other hand, there appear to be legit stories about vandalism against cars and buildings with the McCain/Palin identifier.

    I guess you and I just have different filters in place when we read the news.

    The Smoking Cupcake On October 21, 2008 at 2:22 PM

    Rebuttal to Steve Jones:

    Thanks, Steve...your points are well taken and, yes, we clearly have different news filters. I understand (as I'm sure you do too) that there are always outliers in support. For every Joe McCarthy there's a Che. More to the point, vandalism, conjecture, etc. has always, and will always, be part of the political process. Just par for the course so sorry for putting the burden solely on McCain-Palin.

    Good, lively debate is what its all about as is being able to end the day on a tone of mutual respect and, perhaps, better understanding.

    Hope to see you keep reading and providing your valued feedback.


    dystemper909 On October 21, 2008 at 2:27 PM

    To Cooper;

    I hope you didn't take that as a swipe against you. It certainly wasn't meant that way. In fact, I enjoy your shows and admire your work that I have seen. I just don't care for Decatur.

    To Steve Jones:

    If the people claiming that Obama is a terrorist do not represent the mainstream McCain supporter, then why are they so prominent in the media? Faux News seems to spend an awful lot of time trying to paint him as a terrorist supporter. Hell, John McCain himself tried to do it during the last debate. I'm not even an Obama supporter or a liberal and I have to defend him against that accusation.

    Oh and: "The only apparent reason I can see for Powell's decision is that he wants to vote for a brother." Racist much?

    Maybe part of the reason that Powell endorsed Obama was because he knows that, should McCain be elected, we will have 4 more years of the same disastrous foreign and domestic policies that we've had for the last 7. At least Obama will change something. Whether it be for the better or worse remains to be seen.

    Personally, I don't like either McCain or Obama. I'm voting for Bob Barr!

    SteveJones On October 21, 2008 at 5:54 PM

    Thanks, Smoking Cupcake. I enjoyed our exchange as well. I think we're both able to look outside our respective ideologies and appreciate a valid argument on the other side. That's refreshing.

    Dystemper909, you said, "If the people claiming that Obama is a terrorist do not represent the mainstream McCain supporter, then why are they so prominent in the media?" I'll give a predictable retort: The traditional media tend to cherry-pick items that are damaging to the right and they run them ad infinitum. It's what they do.

    But I didn't hear McCain ever call Obama a terrorist -- only that he had a friendly relationship with one. That's an important distinction.

    As for Barr, I considered him right up to when I was standing in line at the voting machine yesterday. But I ended up going the more conventional route.

    Stacie On October 29, 2008 at 12:41 PM

    Hey there to the cupcake. I tend to get anxious in Decatur. I really like eating at a few places (or maybe just eating period). I tend to be the stick-in-the mud that only ventures to one or two places and orders the same things for years (like Billy Crystal in "Forget Paris"). I like going into Decatur for Cooper Sanchez exhibits-- he is the one of the only local artists that gets me out of suburbia whenever he exhibits. I guess that is my bad-- I need to get out more and see his influences, what influences the local art scene, and what additional exhibits come around to the city.

    For some reason, which I can not seem to explain, meeting people from Decatur makes me nervous. My shoulders head to my ears and my voice gets all squeaky. I sound like Jo-Jo the Monkey Girl. Maybe it is because I briefly dated 2 people from that area and felt that way all the time, maybe it is because I remember when Decatur was mostly Agnes Scott and the expansion had yet to occur, or maybe it is because I just can not fathom why anyone would pay those huge housing prices to live there. I think I have a huge chip on my shoulder about Decatur because I came from the 'hoods of Norcross. I tend to agree that the seriousness is palpable in some places. I tend to feel like I have something to make up for when I go down there-- like my 10 year old sweaters, unisex shoes and geeky glasses are just not the fashion. Kind of like walking into a post-modern Edith Wharton novel.

    I was trying really hard to get a Wharton joke in there somewhere.

    Congrats to you! I have not seen you in over a year. We have traded the fast paced, jet set life that we once had as a hip cosmopolitan couple and have now become suburban sloths with no culture to speak of...I actually commented favorably on a toilet paper commercial the other day-- the one with the bear with toilet paper stuck to his ass. Help us!
    *takes out a fresh glass from under work desk to pour another vodka*