Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Fat Tuesday (aka Mardi Gras)

You knew it was coming, didn't you? I started it with Groundhogs Day, so now people expect it. This is it; Kemp's Official Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras Primer...

  • That the name Fat Tuesday comes from the French Words ‘Gras’ (pronounced ‘graw’) and ‘Mardi’… Mardi Gras… ah! The light bulbs come on
  • That Mardi Gras is a legal holiday in New Orleans
  • That the oldest Mardi Gras celebration in the United States is in Mobile, Alabama. Their celebrations date back to 1703.
  • That the official colors of Mardi Gras (purple which is a symbol of justice; green which represents faith; and gold which signifies power) have their roots in Catholicism.
  • The name Fat Tuesday comes from the tradition of slaughtering and feasting upon a fattened calf (The veal wasn’t butchered though, it died of loneliness) on the last day of Carniva


What is less known about Mardi Gras is its relation to the Christmas season, through the ordinary-time interlude known in many Catholic cultures as Carnival (Carnival comes from the Latin words carne vale, meaning “farewell to the flesh.”)

Like many Catholic holidays and seasonal celebrations, it likely has its roots in pre-Christian traditions based on the seasons. Some believe the festival represented the few days added to the lunar calendar to make it coincide with the solar calendar; since these days were outside the calendar, rules and customs were not obeyed. Others see it as a late-winter celebration designed to welcome the coming spring. As early as the middle of the second century, the Romans observed a Fast of 40 Days, which was preceded by a brief season of feasting, costumes and merrymaking.

There are well-known season-long Carnival celebrations in Europe and Latin America, including Nice, France; Cologne, Germany; and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The best-known celebration in the U.S. is in New Orleans and the French-Catholic communities of the Gulf Coast. Mardi Gras came to the New World in 1699, when a French explorer arrived at the Mississippi River, about 60 miles south of present day New Orleans. He named the spot Point du Mardi Gras because he knew the holiday was being celebrated in his native country that day.


Secret societies, known as krewes, arrange and finance all the Mardi Gras activities in New Orleans, with the oldest krewe being Comus, which made its first appearance in 1857. A different krewe holds a parade on each night during the two weeks leading up to Lent. The krewes also hold masked balls at which the king and queen of the krewe are presented to the society.

Eventually the French in New Orleans celebrated Mardi Gras with masked balls and parties… at least until the Spanish government took over in the mid-1700s and banned the celebrations (sorry, our bad).

This ban continued even after the U.S. government acquired the land but started-up again in 1827.

While Mardi Gras (or Fat Tuesday) has grown in popularity in recent years as a hedonistic and alcohol-swilling event, its roots lie in the Christian calendar.

The whole season kicks off with the Epiphany (also known as Twelfth Night, Three Kings' Day and in some Eastern churches Theophany), which falls on January 6 – 12 days after Christmas. That day celebrates the visit of the Wise Men bearing gifts for the infant Jesus.

What’s the purpose of King's Cake? Well, legend has it that the cakes were made in a circle to represent the circular routes that the Wise Men took to find Jesus, in order to confuse King Herod and foil his plans of killing the Christ Child. In the early days, a coin or bean was hidden inside the cake, and whoever found the item was said to have good luck in the coming year. In Louisiana, bakers now put a small baby, representing the Christ Child, in the cake; the recipient is then expected to host the next King Cake party. (How would you like to miss that and explain to the ER doctor: ‘Well, doc, I was eating a piece of cake when a baby got lodged in my throat.’)

Kemp’s Top Ten Movies Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras Movies

...that have Mardi Gras as a central theme… or even a passing theme… or a naked women theme… or really, have nothing to do with Mardi Gras other than being set in New Orleans because there are not, quite frankly, enough movies about Mardi Gras to do an actual Top Ten Mardi Gras movies list.

10. Zombie vs Mardi Gras
9. Mardi Gras Massacre
8. Piano Players Rarely Play Together
7. Mardi Gras
6. Night Trap (aka Mardi Gras for the Devil)
5. Playboy: Girls of Mardi Gras
4. Mardi Gras: Made in China
3. Girls Gone Wild: Mardi Gras
2. Easy Rider
1. Hard Target

Gratuitous Fat Tuesday picture (Ask me how hard it was to find a Fat Tuesday image that didn't involve naked people)

Mental iPod Song of the Day - FAT TUESDAY EDITION

Talk about karma.

On today, one of New Orleans busiest days of the year (even this year, a scant 6 months after the horror that was Hurricane Katrina and disaster 'Brownie') as I was driving into work and, coincidentally, going over the train tracks in Kankakee, my iPod shuffled itself onto “City of New Orleans” by Arlo Guthrie. I am not making this up, the second song it went to. So, to keep all of you satisfied for me (mind out of gutters people) until I post my Official Fat Tuesday offering, I present to you today’s Mental iPod Song of the Day: "City of New Orleans"

Riding on the City of New Orleans,
Illinois Central Monday morning rail
Fifteen cars and fifteen restless riders,
Three conductors and twenty-five sacks of mail.

All along the southbound odyssey
The train pulls out at Kankakee
Rolls along past houses, farms and fields.
Passin' trains that have no names,
Freight yards full of old black men
And the graveyards of the rusted automobiles.

Good morning America how are you?
Don't you know me I'm your native son,
I'm the train they call The City of New Orleans,
I'll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done.

Dealin' card games with the old men in the club car.
Penny a point ain't no one keepin' score.
Pass the paper bag that holds the bottle
Feel the wheels rumblin' 'neath the floor.
And the sons of Pullman porters
And the sons of engineers
Ride their father's magic carpets made of steel.
Mothers with their babes asleep,
Are rockin' to the gentle beat
And the rhythm of the rails is all they feel.


Nighttime on The City of New Orleans,
Changing cars in Memphis, Tennessee.
Half way home, we'll be there by morning
Through the Mississippi darkness
Rolling down to the sea.
And all the towns and people seem
To fade into a bad dream
And the steel rails still ain't heard the news.
The conductor sings his song again,
The passengers will please refrain
This train's got the disappearing railroad blues.

Good night, America, how are you?
Don't you know me I'm your native son,
I'm the train they call The City of New Orleans,
I'll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done.

Sunday, February 26, 2006


"Fra-gee-lay. That must be Italian."

- Mr. Parker from A Christmas Story, portrayed by Darren McGavin who passed away Saturday at the age of 83. As long as this movie is shown and reruns of Kolchak: The Night Stalker are available, your memory will never be forgotten. We will miss you.

"I wish, I wish I was a fish."

- Henry Limpet from The Incredible Mr. Limpet, portrayed by Don Knotts who passed away on Friday night at the age of 81. More popularly known as Deputy Barney Fife on The Andy Griffith Show or Mr. Furley on Three's Company, I'll always remember you from Mr. Limpet. You will also be missed.

Friday, February 24, 2006

"Drink scotch whisky, all night long..."

At least that's what Steely Dan suggested in 'Deacon Blues'

Me? Not so much.

Last Friday I posted about the Cash Bash that I (along my the wife, my brother and his girlfriend) was going to attend last Saturday night… and some of you wanted to know how it went.

Well, it took me this long to remember it.

I’m exaggerating of course, but that has been what it’s felt like all week. Walking around in a stupor… (now I know how “President” Bush always feels…[rimshot]) trying to shake off the effects alcohol has on the (older) human body. (I am not an alcoholic… nor do I play one on TV. I drink in moderation. But when one has a chance to drink with a named designated driver and not without the responsibility of kids… one takes advantage… who of us here reading this post haven’t???)

After last week I have come to a horrifying conclusion… I. Am. Old.

It’s not something that homo-sapiens like to admit, but I feel the time has come for me to admit it.

I am 32 years old (33 in July) and can no longer consume the mass quantities of alcohol I was able to in college… hell, that I was able to 5 years ago.

I tried last Saturday night but with decidedly different results from 10 years ago (that’s something else I’m becoming to sense I am going to be having trouble coming to grips with… 10 years ago this summer I graduated from college… 10 years ago… 10 long… years… hijo de puta)

I started off with 1 beer when we got there. Meh. It didn’t taste good which means my body was telling me I wasn’t in the mood for beer. So I switched to Scotch and water… quite a few Scotch and waters. How many? I’m not sure; I lost count while I was playing Blackjack (and doing well; at one point I was even up 5 dollars… but then lost it on booze and women)

After Blackjack, and while we were holding the bar up and smoking some (very good) cigars, my brother and I turned to Crown Royals and water. (Interesting sidebar; at first it was hard to get the bartenders attention, but after we twice gave him a tip of $5, he was our bitch and then supplied us with very-generous amounts of CR in our glasses. At one point, he glanced at the President of the College and bypassed his drink order he could get us more… I told my wife to expect a call from him in the next few days…)

Back to the post at hand; age. I am old.

I can no longer drink a lot of alcohol and not feel the effects.

I can no longer eat mass amounts of food and no longer feel the effects.

I can no longer smoke more than 1 cigar a night without feeling the effects.

I. Am. Old. (To that I say to father time: ¡Chupapollas!)

I didn’t get sick that night (I never get physically ill after drinking) and didn’t have a hangover (remedy: drink, at the minimum, 6 pints of water) the next day… but I just felt… blah… incredibly blah… like I had been run over with a truck (which backed up a few times and ran me over again and again) forced to scale Mts. Fuji & Kilimanjaro and then forced to watch 24 straight hours of ‘Saved by the Bell: The College Years

Don’t get me wrong, I did thoroughly enjoy myself (we all did), met our new neighbors (who are young… very, very young) talked some politics with a local alderman who is running for State Rep and may want me to write him some stump speeches (kick ass) and had an overall good time.

(Scott, next year you HAVE to go. No ifs. Ands. Or buts.)

BTW, in case any of you were wondering. None of us won any money. Not even one of the $100 pots… oh well, it was still a fun night out with family and friends (and no kids.. God love ‘em) and we will do it again next year

Just with better drink-pacing.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Mental iPod Song of the Day

Rather than not have any post on a given day, if I can’t think of anything interesting to say, I’ll throw out a new mental iPod Song of the Day.

This morning I hit shuffle so today’s mental iPod song of the day is Overkill by Colin Hay from the 'Scrubs' television soundtrack (and also from Colin Hay’s album Man at Work)

I can't get to sleep
I think about the implications
Of diving in too deep
And possibly the complications

Especially at night
I worry over situations
I know I'll be alright
Perhaps it's just imagination

Day after day it reappears
Night after night my heartbeat shows the fear
Ghosts appear and fade away

Alone between the sheets
Only brings exasperation
It's time to walk the streets
Smell the desperation

At least there's pretty lights
And though there's little variation
It nullifies the night from overkill

Day after day it reappears
Night after night my heartbeat shows the fear
Ghosts appear and fade away
Come back another day

I can't get to sleep
I think about the implications
Of diving in too deep
And possibly the complications

Especially at night
I worry over situations
I know I'll be alright
It's just overkill

Day after day it reappears
Night after night my heartbeat shows the fear
Ghosts appear and fade away
Ghosts appear and fade away
Ghosts appear and fade away

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Random Thoughts for a Wednesday Afternoon

It’s Wednesday so that means it’s time for my patented (in name only) Random Thoughts for a Wednesday Afternoon…

  • If I hear one more thing about Kevin Federline, I’m gonna barf… uh, oh…here it comes…
  • Why they’re doing it is beyond me but researchers continue to debate on the sequence of events before the Titanic sank. To me it seems like rearranging deck chairs on the... well... you know… Click HERE to read more about it.
  • Do bears bear? Do bees be? Do ducks duck? Do flies fly? Do math majors multiply? Do eggs get laid?
  • Ladies… be grateful that you didn’t marry THIS LOSER.
  • Jimmy Cracks corn and I do care.
  • All my blogging friends out there (and you know who you are) be aware that I found a link that is nothing but various memes/games to pass on to other bloggers…in fact…
  • I did one of these and found myself to be a Linguistic thinker, who tend to think in words, like to use language to express complex ideas, are sensitive to the sounds and rhythms of words as well as their meanings. Careers which suit Linguistic thinkers include journalist, translator, poet, lyricist, writer. Other Linguistic Thinkers include William Shakespeare, Sylvia Plath, Anne Frank and Leonardo da Vinci. Want to try the test yourself? Click HERE.
  • There is not always room for Jello
  • Are the Olympics over yet?
  • Gratuitous picture time. This is a picture of our daschund Zoie and one of my Aunt’s weimaraners, Cody (who had to be put down a few weeks ago) taken at my parent’s house this past Christmas.

Mental iPod Song of the Day

Hit shuffle on the ol’ iPod this morning, so today’s mental iPod song of the day is “Big Boys Bickering” by Paul McCartney.








(Fuckin' it up for ev'ryone)

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Mental iPod Song of the Day

Saw this feature on another blog I frequent (Kemp ‘borrowing’ from a blog for his own blog? I am shocked. Shocked to find gambling in this establishment!)

Kemp’s mental iPod song of the day

This is a song that I listened to on my iPod while driving into work this morning.

Hallelujah’ performed by Jeff Buckley from The West Wing soundtrack
I heard there was a secret chord
that David played and it pleased the lord
but you don't really care for music, do you?
well it goes like this the fourth, the fifth
the minor fall and the major lift
the baffled king composing hallelujah


well your faith was strong but you needed proof
you saw her bathing on the roof
her beauty and the moonlight overthrew you
she tied you to her kitchen chair
she broke your throne and she cut your hair
and from your lips she drew the hallelujah


baby I've been here before
I've seen this room and I've walked this floor
I used to live alone before I knew
you I've seen your flag on the marble arch
but love is not a victory march
it's a cold and it's a broken hallelujah


well there was a time when you let me know
what's really going on below
but now you never show that to me do you
but remember when i moved in you
and the holy dove was moving too
and every breath we drew was hallelujah

well, maybe there's a God above
but all I've ever learned from love
was how to shoot somebody who outdrew you
it's not a cry that you hear at night
it's not somebody who's seen the light
it's a cold and it is a broken hallelujah


Monday, February 20, 2006

President's Day

No day off today, I am working. So, seeing as how it’s evolved into a bit of tradition, I present to you some President’s Day holiday facts.

Did you know?

  • That contrary to popular belief, Presidents' Day (observed on the third Monday of February) honors Lincoln, Washington and ALL other past presidents of the United States of America. That means when you get elected, there's automatically a holiday honoring you - no matter how good (or not so good) you are at the job… I could say something about our current ‘Prez’ but it’s like shooting attorney’s in a field… it’s just too easy.
  • The Office of Personnel Management (OPM - the Federal Government’s Human Resources Agency) states that, according to federal law, President’s Day is officially called Washington’s Birthday
  • As far as historical scholars know, neither President Washington nor President Lincoln ever attended a President's Day sale.

Kemp’s Top Ten ‘President’s Day’ movies:

  1. The Phantom President
  2. Betty Boop for President
  3. The President Vanishes
  4. Kisses for My President
  5. The Virgin President
  6. Joe and Ethel Turp Call on the President
  7. Olive Oyl for President
  8. The American President
  9. The President’s Analyst
  10. All the President’s Men

President’s Day Trivia:

  • President Taft was a large man and weighed about 322 pounds. A special bathtub was installed for him in the White House, big enough to hold four men.
  • There have been 5 left-handed Presidents: James Garfield, Harry S. Truman, Gerald Ford, George Bush, and Bill Clinton.
  • During his presidency, Ulysses S. Grant was arrested and fined $20 for driving his horse too fast.
  • Nine Presidents did not attend college: George Washington, Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren, Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Johnson, Grover Cleveland, and Harry S. Truman.

History of President’s Day

The original version of the holiday was in commemoration of George Washington's birthday in 1796 (the last full year of his presidency). In 1796, many Americans celebrated his birthday on the 22nd while others marked the occasion on the 11th instead.

By the early 19th century, Washington's Birthday had taken firm root in the American experience as a bona fide national holiday. Its traditions included Birthnight Balls in various regions, speeches and receptions given by prominent public figures, and a lot of revelry in taverns throughout the land.

Then along came Abraham Lincoln, another revered president and fellow February baby (born on the 12th of the month). The first formal observance of his birthday took place in 1865 (the year after his assassination) when both houses of Congress gathered for a memorial address. While Lincoln's Birthday did not become a federal holiday like George Washington's, it did become a legal holiday in several states.

In 1968, legislation (HR15951) was enacted that affected several federal holidays, one of which was Washington's Birthday. The observation of his birthday was shifted to the third Monday in February each year whether or not it fell on the 22nd. This act, which took effect in 1971, was designed to simplify the yearly calendar of holidays and give federal employees some standard three-day weekends in the process.

Apparently, while the holiday in February is still officially known as Washington's Birthday it has become popularly (and, perhaps in some cases at the state level, legally) known as "President's Day." This has made the third Monday in February a day for honoring Washington and Lincoln, as well as all the other men who have served as president.

How about some past Presidential Campaign Slogans:

  • William Henry Harrison – “Tippecanoe and Tyler Too”
  • James K. Polk – “5440 or fight”
  • Henry Clay – “Who is James K. Polk?” (Our thoughts exactly…)
  • Grover Cleveland – “Blain, Blaine, James G. Blaine, The Continental Liar from the State of Maine” (at least it rhymed…)
  • James Blaine – “Ma, Ma, Where’s my Pa, Gone to the White House, Ha, Ha, Ha” (at least it rhymed…)
  • William McKinley – “A Full Dinner Party” (Isn’t that what Dolly Madison always said?)
  • Woodrow Wilson – “He kept us out of war”
  • Warren G. Harding – “Cox and cocktails” (I don’t even know where to begin…)
  • Dwight Eisenhower – “I like Ike” (At least it rhymed…)
  • Richard Nixon – “Nixon’s the One” (And number 2…)
  • Jimmy Carter – “Not just Peanuts” (But jelly…)
  • Ronald Reagan – “It’s morning again in America” (That’s how he remembered it anyway… sorry, that was in bad taste…)
  • Bill Clinton – “Putting People First” (Especially interns…)
  • George W. Bush – “Compassionate Conservatism” (Doesn’t apply to the VP while Quail hunting…)

Gratuitous President's Day photo:

Friday, February 17, 2006


Friday... Friday... Friday... Friday... Friday... FRIDAY!!!!!

It's Friday everyone. The end of the work week. The weekend is nigh (nigh??)

What do we have planned for this weekend?

  • Friday night is the usual excitement. Grocery store. Whoo-hoo!

  • Saturday morning The Peanut Butter & The Jelly have music class. Then my parents come in to town from St Louis for the weekend. Along with my brother and his girlfriend for the night. Why you ask... family picture Saturday afternoon. Yes... all of us, including the little ones. So you're all thinking to yourself... wow, Kemp's gonna need a drink after that... well, funny you should mention that.

  • Saturday night my wife and I, along with my brother and his girlfriend, are going to a "Cash Bash." What's a Cash Bash you ask? Glad you asked...It's a fundraising event to raise money (imagine that) for the Community College my wife works at. For $100 per couple you get a food buffet, unlimited alcohol, and casino-type games (whoa...did I just get transported to a political lobbyist fundraiser?) You also get your name put into a drawing for $5,000.... $1,000... $500... and 10 chances for $100.

Unlimited food + Unlimited 'al-key-hall' + Gambling + Cigars + No kids = Hallelujah!!! (thank you Kevin Smith...)

Don't get me wrong, I love my kids, but a chance to go out for the evening while my parents watch them... it's... it's... I'm sorry... I promised myself I wouldn't cry....

Have a good weekend! Bye everybody!

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Three Words: Pitchers & Catchers

Last baseball season was a very disappointing one for me.

First; my beloved Cardinals fell short of getting back to the World Series (and avenging their loss to the hated, despised and loathed, Boston Red Sox.) by losing in the National League Championship Series to the Houston Astros… (the Astros!? The Astros!? Come on now… how the f*** could you lose to the Astros!? I mean…, come on!! The Astros!!??…. breathe Kemp… one, two, three… calm blue ocean, calm blue ocean, calm blue ocean…)

Second, we said goodbye to Busch Memorial Stadium (a subject I have already waxed-poetic on, many, many times), the ‘cookie-cutter’ home of the Cardinals since before I was born. It was demolished to make way for Busch Stadium Part Two.

But now… my hopes are up. My joy is back.

Pitchers and catchers are reporting… say it loud and it sounds like heaven…. ‘pitchers and catchers are reporting’… gives me shivers. Pitchers and catchers don't actually begin working out until Friday, and it's another few days before the full squad is required to appear, but no three words in the English language can entice and captivate baseball fans as much as the words “pitchers and catchers” can…

I know that we are, once again, targeted by the rest of the NL Central, but the only team I am worried about is the Astros… (the Astros!? The Astros!? Come on now… how the f*** could you lose to the Ast—, sorry… my bad… I’m back on track now)

I am a little worried (very little, as little as the “President’s” approval ratings) about the Chicago Cubs. You know, the hated, loathed, despised and reviled Chicago Cubs. But then I think…it’s the Cubs, come on now…

Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, and Cincinnati? Meh. They made changes, but nothing that I think can overtake my boys in red.

And the Cards made some… moves in the off season. Nothing earth-shattering. We let Morris go, but I think we could have someone better than Morris in the wings with Anthony Reyes… or even Sidney Ponson could turn his career around with pitching coach Dave Duncan’s magic.

So I am hopeful… and optimistic… and psyched about the team.

I’m also psyched about something else about the Cardinals upcoming season…

The new Busch Stadium. It looks great. In fact, here’s a picture from the last day of demolition of Old Busch taken at 8:50 am on 12/9/2005, the new Busch is on the right…

And here’s a picture of the New Busch as of 11:39 am today, 2/16/2006. Don’t it look grand? A little over 2 months and look how far they have progressed…

How about all of you? I know some of you are baseball freaks. (Though I also believe that some of you like the Red Sox and the Yankees…I won’t say anything negative about any of you liking those teams… except ‘sorry.’)

Are any of you looking forward to the new season?

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Random Thoughts for a Wednesday Afternoon

It’s a ritual on my other blog, so, rather than try to write up a long, drawn-out post I thought I would alter the title slightly and do it here on my personal blog.

Random Thoughts for a Wednesday Afternoon.

  • Like Matthew, I received some good blogging info today. www.Dadbloggers.com has offered me the chance to join them as a regular contributor. My first post on the site should appear February 23rd. Yay for me.
  • I watched War of the Worlds last night. I came away from the movie with one question… How the HELL does Dakota Fanning keep getting work?
  • Does anyone really care if Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes break up?
  • I am officially sick of the Olympics. Not so much the events, but the damn ‘human-interest’ angles. There is only so much ‘I want to win for [insert family member here]’ that one person can take.
  • Is there really a market for Season One (or any season for that matter) of ‘Growing Pains’ on DVD? And if there is, should these people be allowed to procreate?
  • Repeat the above thought but substitute “Gimme a Break’ for ‘Growing Pains’
  • Will Dick “Dead Eye” Cheney now have trouble finding hunting partners?
  • To Kill a Mockingbird should be required reading (and viewing) for every high school student in the country.
  • To be honest, the winner of Best in Show is… kind of ugly.
  • Is it just me or does a Bull Terrier’s head look like an egg?
  • It’s obvious to me, but apparently not to others, that we'd all be a lot happier if we just came to grips with the fact that the Internet will, one day, offend us all. This columnist agrees.
  • There’s a new game for baby boomers that will predict whether they will die within the next five years with 81% accuracy. That should make for some interesting early-bird dinner conversations shouldn’t it?
  • The other blog I post on got over 500 visits on Monday. Our previous high was 133. All I can say to that is 'Holy Flurking Schnit.'
  • How badly would the question; ‘In the future, do you plan to go on any hunting excursions with VP Dick Cheney?’ skew the results?
  • And to think, when I woke up this morning I had no idea that I would see the words 'flamingo cup' and 'toilet' appear in the same sentence.

That's all I got...

Shout Out

I would be remiss if I did not do a quick shout-out to the creator of one of my all-time favorite shows...

Happy 52nd Birthday Matt Groening, this Duff's for you.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Valentine's Day

Ok, MetroDad beat me to it... so did Matthew over at ChildsPlay X2 ... I had started this post last night, fell asleep, and, not one of those who ever blogs at work… not me, no sirree (I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, you just can’t express sarcasm in the written word that well) I was going to post it this afternoon when I got home from work.

So instead of posting a story like that, I will start by saying I love my wife more and more each day. And each day I am grateful she is with me for eternity and has given us our beautiful daughters, The Peanut Butter and The Jelly. She laughs at my jokes, she compliments my cooking and, last but not least; she makes me a better man, husband, and father, and for that I can never thank you enough. I love you, always… and forever.

Now, rather than fill the remainder of this post with more saccharine, which we are probably all full of by now anyway, I present to you Valentine’s Day cards from the OBSESSIVE-COMPULSIVE set. Or as my brother said, think of these as Valentines Day cards from Adrian Monk.

(Special Statement: By no means is this post striving to make light of any serious problems or disorders… it is presented as satire… thank you)

  • “Sweetheart, I've got you under my skin. I'll wash and wash, but you'll never come out.”
  • “Roses are red, violets are blue. Sugar is sweet, and I think I left the iron on.”
  • “I'm crazy for you! Get it? Crazy.”
  • “BE MINE. Wait, that has six letters. Six letters is so unlucky. It's like YOU DIE. That's exactly what it's like. Now you're going to die and it's all my fault.”
  • “Honey, I'm hot for you! It's like a fever. Do you think it's viral meningitis? I bet it is. I touched the light switch and who knows what germs were on there. Then I thought about you, and infected you-it's a viral brain infection, so of course it's transmitted through brain waves… that makes perfect sense. We should probably just drive to the hospital right now.”
  • "You're all I think about… literally!”
  • “You and me, sitting in a tree— oh, wait, that doesn't sound very safe, does it? Let's say we're sitting on a… couch instead. Huh. I… I wonder who sat on this couch before us. Maybe we should put some plastic wrap down…. yeah I think we'd better. Is this a new box of plastic wrap, or has it been opened for a while? Are you sure? OK. OK. Let's just say it’s new and move on. So we're sitting on a couch, K-I-S-S-I-N-G. Except that I kind of feel this tingle on my lip? Like I might be getting a cold sore? Maybe we should just forget the whole thing.”
  • “It's hard to tell, what with all the SSRI’s in my bloodstream, but I think I feel something for you.”
  • “I'd touch you without gloves. If I could, I mean.”
  • “I love you. Wait. That didn't feel right. Let me try it again. I love you. That didn’t come out right either… don't think about disease, don't think about disease, don't think about disease… I love you. There, I said it. Whew.”

Did you enjoy those? I knew you would. Ok… how about some

Inane Valentine’s Day trivia
On this date in 1929, the "St. Valentine's Day Massacre" took place in Chicago, Illinois. Seven gangsters, all rivals of Al Capone, were killed. People think that it was Capone’s men that did the killing but they’re wrong. It was the seven gangster’s wives who didn’t even get a card, much less flowers or chocolates, for Valentine’s Day… Remember the saying: hell hath no fury like a woman forgotten on Valentine’s Day.

What’s that you say? Now you want some...

Historical background on Valentine’s Day?
As early as the fourth century B.C., the Romans engaged in an annual young man's rite to passage to the God Lupercus. The names of teenage women were placed in a box and drawn at random by adolescent men; thus, a man was assigned a woman companion for the duration of the year, after which another lottery was staged. After eight hundred years of this practice, the early church fathers sought to end it. They found an answer in Valentine, a bishop who had been martyred some two hundred years earlier.According to church tradition St. Valentine was a priest near Rome in about the year 270 A.D.

(At that time the Roman Emperor Claudius-II who had issued an edict forbidding marriage. This was around when the heyday of Roman empire had almost come to an end. Lack of quality administrators led to frequent civil strife. Learning declined, taxation increased, and trade slumped to a low, precarious level. And the Gauls, Slavs, Huns, Turks and Mongolians from Northern Europe and Asian increased their pressure on the empire's boundaries. The empire was grown too large to be shielded from external aggression and internal chaos with existing forces. Thus more of capable men were required to be recruited as soldiers and officers)

When Claudius became the emperor, he felt that married men were more emotionally attached to their families, and thus, will not make good soldiers. So to assure quality soldiers, he banned marriage.

Valentine, a bishop , seeing the trauma of young lovers, met them in a secret place, and joined them in the sacrament of matrimony. Claudius learned of this "friend of lovers," and had him arrested. The emperor, impressed with the young priest's dignity and conviction, attempted to convert him to the roman gods, to save him from certain execution. Valentine refused to recognize Roman Gods and even attempted to convert the emperor, knowing the consequences fully.

On February 24, 270, Valentine was executed, but not before, while in prison awaiting his fate, he came in contact with his jailor, Asterius.

It seems Asterius had a blind daughter and requested Valentine heal his daughter. Through his faith he miraculously restored the sight of Asterius' daughter.

Just before his execution, he asked for a pen and paper from his jailor, and signed a farewell message to her "From Your Valentine," a phrase that lived ever after.Valentine thus became a Patron Saint, and the spiritual overseer of an annual festival. The festival involved young Romans offering women they admired, and wished to court, handwritten greetings of affection on February 14. The greeting cards contained St. Valentine's name.

And now you know… the rest. Of. The story.

Still hungry for more? How about...

Kemp’s Top Ten Valentine’s Day/Romantic Movies:

  1. Casablanca
  2. Pride & Prejudice
  3. The Philadelphia Story
  4. Reality Bites
  5. Before Sunrise
  6. Amelie
  7. Chasing Amy
  8. It Happened One Night
  9. Say Anything
  10. The Princess Bride

Now how about the...

Worst (so-called) Romance Movies:

  1. Gigli
  2. From Justin to Kelly

Really, isn’t that enough?

Still hungry for more Valentine's Day-related madness? Ok. Here’s...

How to say “I love you” in other languages.

  • Danish -- "Jeg elsker dig"
  • Dutch -- "Ik hou van jou"
  • Esperanto -- "Mi amas vin"
  • French -- "Je t'aime"
  • German -- "Ich liebe Dich"
  • Indonesian -- "Saya cinta kamu"
  • Italian -- "Ti amo"
  • Japanese -- "Aishite imasu"
  • Latin -- "Te amo"
  • Mandarin Chinese -- "Wo ai ni"
  • Polish -- "Kocham cie"
  • Romanian -- "Te iu besc"
  • Russian -- "Ya vas liubliu"
  • Spanish -- "Te amo"
  • Swedish -- "Jag alskar dig"
  • Turkish -- "Seni seviyorum"

And now… a gratuitous Valentine’s Day picture of my twin daughters, The Peanut Butter and The Jelly. Happy Valentine's Day everyone...

Friday, February 10, 2006

SAHD for a Day

The Peanut Butter AND The Jelly are both sick today, and since it's my turn (my wife and I alternate staying home when the kids are sick) I will be here all day with coughs, runny noses and a slight fever on The PB.

I'll post later when they are taking their naps. This is a nasty infection that I wouldn't wish upon my worst enemy.... wait a minute, yes I would.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Kemp's Movie Quote Challenge

I told him he started something… but I don’t think he believed me.

Yesterday, Mr. Big Dubya opined about being home alone with Little Dub. Within the post he mentioned the movie “Real Genius” which, naturally, got me off on a Real Genius quote-spurt. Then MetroDad joined in and it was anarchy... chaos… “human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together - mass hysteria.” (Damn it, there I go again…)

Ya see; I have the uncanny ability to remember quotes and inane trivia from movies and TV shows… I don’t know why, I just do. Maybe when I was younger a television set or a movie projector fell on top of me and transferred some of its television/movie power to me… wow, that sentence sounded so much better in my head than it looks…

Simple game… I give a quote and a year and a hint, and someone leaves me a comment as to which movie it is.

  1. “Hey, Hoops, you ever notice how people die in alphabetical order?” – 1986 (Three words: Savage Steve Holland)
  2. “I know you want to work for Mo Fuzz. And Mo Fuzz wants you to. But first, I'm going to need to you do something for me... on spec.” – 1988. (A small, independent film from a producer who at one time had a successful music career)
  3. “Goddamn it, I knew I should've listened to my mother. I could've been a cosmetic surgeon, five hundred thou a year, up to my neck in tits and ass.” – 1984 (Originally, Sylvester Stallone and Christopher Reeve were up for the lead male role)
  4. “Greetings, Starfighter. You have been recruited by the Star League to defend the frontier against Xur and the Ko-Dan armada.” – 1984 (Wil Wheaton filmed scenes for this movie which were cut, yet his name still appears in the end credits)
  5. “And grab some toilet paper; I ain't gonna use no leaves.” – 1984 (A message to the resistance, ‘John has a long mustache’, is the same message the French resistance gets in one of the best war movies ever made; “The Longest Day”)
  6. “First learn stand, then learn fly.” – 1984 (Clint Eastwood’s son Kyle auditioned for the lead role but didn’t get it)
  7. “Excuse me, we're from Noisebusters. Do you know where the Menudo concert is?” – 1986 (Movie starring a current Presidential candidate who is also a former Senator from Alderan and a LA Attorney, a former Lieutenant of Tony Soprano and a tap dancer)
  8. “Oh my God, the quarterback is toast.” – 1988 (A ballet dancer playing a terrorist? Say what?)
  9. “Gimme a call whenever you wanna cut off my head. I can always crawl around without it.” – 1984 (First movie from a duo of brothers specializing in dark comedy and crime)
  10. “Sorry, I'm a bit of a stickler for paperwork. Where would we be if we didn't follow the correct procedures?” – 1985 (movie gem from a former animator)
  11. “Get away from her, you bitch!” – 1986 (Sci-Fi movie co-starring a former lynchpin of NBC’s comedy lineup)
  12. “Are there no gods, no Buddha? If you exist, hear me. You are mischievous and cruel! Are you so bored up there you must crush us like ants? Is it such fun to see men weep?” – 1985 (A story that was partially inspired by Shakespeare's "King Lear" but at the same time also draws on samurai legends as well)
  13. “Joey, do you like movies about gladiators?” – 1980 (Should be easy, but here’s a hint anyway; David Letterman did a screen test for the lead male role)

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


Ok… apparently I’ve been exhausting my creative talents on my other blog (which got its 4000th visitor Monday… whoo-hoo!), as I cannot think of anything to write about here.

I’ve travailed and traipsed the ‘internets’ and the blogosphere, hoping to garner some sort of insight and spark some creative juices… no such luck.

So I hit here… at the computer… thinking, pondering, mulling considering, brooding, reflecting…

And nothing comes…

Maybe tomorrow…

Monday, February 06, 2006

Random Post-Super Bowl Thoughts

  • That was NOT a Steelers touchdown in the first quarter, Seattle got hosed.
  • The ads this year were… not really bad… not really good… just sort of… there.
  • My favorite ads? Well, it’s a toss-up between the Ameriquest ad with the doctors and the fly. Funny as hell. And the baby Clydesdale trying to pull the Budweiser wagon then getting helped by the two older horses… sweet, and totally saccharine-nated.
  • Worst commercial: Another toss-up. Shaq shilling for Desperate Housewives or the P-Diddy Pepsi commercial. Ewwwww….
  • The NFL cut Mick’s mic on two incidents for “questionable lyrics.” Whatever.
  • The food I had at my Super Bowl bash can best be described with one word: gluttony.
  • ... though I have to say my toasted ravioli was the best I had ever done.
  • I missed part of the 3rd Quarter because my daughters wanted me to read them a bedtime story… and it was worth it.
  • The Peanut Butter and The Jelly love sports and love to watch sports with me, but were more interested in playing with my wife and my brother’s girlfriend than watching the game.
  • Aretha Franklin, Dr. John & Aaron Neville did an exceptional job on the Anthem. Very cool.
  • Loved the stage the Stones played on, very cool.
  • Did anyone here know that Jerome Bettis was from Detroit? I hadn’t heard.
  • BTW, way to go Jerome! Congrats on a phenomenal career…
  • I can’t stand John Madden… I really really can’t - Worst. Announcer. Ever.
  • Watched Grey’s Anatomy after the game. First time. Not bad… not bad at all.
  • Had 2 beers while frying my ravioli (and that is not a euphemism for anything else… get your mind out of the gutters people) and 2 more before halftime. After that, none. And I have no idea why.

That’s all I got. But I have to say this: ‘Wait ‘til next year. The Rams will be good again and will knock Seattle from the top spot in the division... sorry Tony.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Super "Bowl"ing for Dollars

One of the things I do in my spare time (which I have plenty of you know, having twins, working full-time, being a blogger) is teach at the local college. I primarily teach business, management and computer classes with a few public speaking classes thrown in there for good measure.

I also teach marketing. (As does my brother, but on a slightly larger and grander scale as he is a professor – recently tenured – at DePaul University in Chicago)

Last year at this time I did a special lecture on Super Bowl ads. Where and when the craze started, the rising costs of airing a SB ad, etc. I also went through what I thought were the best SB ads ever (you can see where this post is going, can’t you?)

BTW, click HERE for a terrific link that shows most of the Super Bowl ads from this post.

This year, each 30-second spot costs $2,500,000 (up from $2,400,000 last year). Between 1967 and 1983 the price for an ad fluctuated with the economy. After 1984, the prices started to go up every year (with a 30-second spot going for $368,000 for the 1984 game to $525,000 for the 1985 contest.

Now, you’re all asking what happened in 1984 that caused the sudden price-spike? You asked, I shall tell as I recap some of the best-ever Super Bowl ads of all-time (that’s just a little redundant isn’t it?) To avoid arguments, this list is NOT in any order of best to worst, it’s purely arbitrary based on popular opinions. Mine. Hah!

(Of course I’m kidding… it’s complied from a list of viewer favorites from such sites as MSN.com, ESPN.com, etc.)

The first one (which happens to be MY favorite as well as the one that started the SB Ad craze) is from Apple Computers.

  • Released in 1984 (ah-ha!) the ad is simply titled “1984” and it turned the Super Bowl commercial into an event that sometimes exceeded the game being played as the first-ever Macintosh was introduced in this 60-second spot done by “Blade Runner” and “Gladiator” director Ridley Scott. In an homage to George Orwell’s novel of the same name, an auditorium full of mindless and spiritless drones watches as “Big Brother” (symbolism people! IBM) goes on and on about the anniversary of the “Information Purification Directives” on a gigantic television screen. All of a sudden, from the back of the hall, a blonde woman in shorts comes racing toward the screen, stops, and hurls a slow-motion sledgehammer (symbolism again people! the new Mac) and shatters the image. Then the voice-over: “On Jan. 24, Apple Computer will introduce Macintosh, and you'll see why 1984 won't be like ‘1984’.” Beautiful in its complex simplicity and visual artistry.
  • In 1995, the way people looked at frogs was forever altered with the first appearance of the famous (or infamous?) “Budweiser Frogs.” This one can prove to you that sometimes the most basic idea is the most successful one. The synopsis is easy, three frogs sitting on lily pads in a dimly-lit swamp (as opposed to a bright swamp?), crickets chirping in the background. Then, the amphibians croak out the product name, “Budddd,” “Weissss,” “Errrrrr”. Did the ad work, go up to any person who watches the Super Bowl, say “Budddd” and find out for yourself. During the 1997 NBA play-offs, Anheuser-Busch (AB) premiered a series of spin-off ads starring a pair of wise-cracking Lizards. They, like the frogs, helped propel Budweiser and AB to new heights in their advertising.
  • 2000 we saw the airing of E-Trade’s “Monkey” ad. As was simple enough, two old men clapping off-beat to La Cucaracha while a monkey in an E-Trade t-shirt dances on top of a garbage can. Then comes the punchline: “We just wasted two million dollars. What are you doing with your money?” Funny and alarmingly simple.
  • Ok, this next one aired WAY to long before Budweiser finally decided to stick a fork in it, but the first 2 years were a sight to see. I am talking, of course, of “Bud Bowl.” The ads were shown every year from 1989 to 1996 (and they REALLY should have stopped after 1991) I will openly agree that the ads are not even the best Budweiser Super Bowl ads, but in that first year, many people rooted just as hard for Bud as they did for the teams in the actual Super Bowl. My bet, is that Bud will rollout this campaign again some day.
  • Anyone who has EVER worked in Corporate America can relate to this next one: Monster.com’s “When I Grow Up.” Released during the 1999 Super Bowl, this ad got you thinking one way, and then quickly leads you in the opposite direction. How? First, Monster paraded out a gaggle of cute kids to tell us all their hopes and dreams and aspirations. Cute right… until they start speaking their lines such as: “I want to have a brown nose.” “I want to claw my way up into middle management.” “I want to be forced into early retirement.” (Hey! I resemble those remarks.)
  • Electronic Data Systems (EDS) and their “Herding Cats.” Quick, what does EDS do/sell? Yeah, I thought so. EDS is a specialized product that serves a specialized group (IT/IS gee— my bad, people), but this ad brought them to the attention of the masses…though if you asked the masses what EDS does, many couldn’t tell ya anything about them other than they do excellent Super Bowl commercials. The premise, take some guys who look like they stepped down off a Marlboro billboard (or off a screening of Brokeback Mountain… maybe not) and show them riding the range while trying to corral a couple hundred digitally rendered felines and brushing cat hair from their chaps. Utter genius. EDS had another Super Bowl hit that featured the running of the squirrels at Pamplona, Spain. That one was brilliant as well.
  • Before they fell into the pit that is Britney Spears, the folks at Pepsi could always be counted on for one of the best commercials of any Super Bowl Sunday. In 1995 they aired “Diner”, which showed a scene of a Pepsi deliveryman and a Coke deliverymen experiencing a moment of diner-counter detente and each taking a sip of the others wares. Nice, polite, unifying… until of course, the Coca-Cola employee won't return the Pepsi to the Pepsi employee and all hell breaks loose. The next year Pepsi released “Security Camera”, a follow-up of sorts where a security camera detects a Coke deliveryman trying to steal a can of Pepsi. He fails and proceeds to spill Pepsi cans all over the floor. This is funny stuff… even though I can’t stand Pepsi.
  • McDonald's “Showdown” which premiered in 1993. This ad shows Larry Bird, who almost always seems to be completely devoid of personality, became charming-esque in a series of ads with Michael Jordan. The best of which was their game of “Horse”. “Off the expressway, over the river, off the billboard, through the window, off the wall, nothin' but net.” You have to ask yourself, with these two, did they even have to digitally enhance the ad?
  • In 1995, Nike put Dennis Hopper into an ad that some say signaled the onset of political correctness in American pop culture. In the ad, entitled “Patton” Hopper (in perfect Easy Rider mode) spoke, scarcely coherently, an ode to “the ballet of bulldozers, the moments of grace in a sea of fury.” The ad generated controversy as it was thought to have been mocking the mentally ill. Never mind that Hopper had been acting in that manner for years. “Bad things, man.”
  • Cedric the Entertainer is romancing a very hot date in Bud’s 2001 ad simply titled, “Cedric.” When it's time to cool off just a little, he eases into the kitchen to grab two bottles of Bud Light from the fridge. Cedric's, um, shall we say, ‘excited’ at the prospect of what the evening might hold, so he does a little happy dance in the kitchen, accidentally shaking up the bottles in the process. The end of the evening comes too soon when he opens the bottles and the shaken beer explodes all over his date. Funny as hell, but also poignant as we all feel for Cedric… having probably done something similar to a date way back when… me? No, not me. No, no, a little bit. Long story that I won’t bore you with today.
  • Budweiser’s 1996 classic “Clydesdales Play Ball”. A snowy game of pick-up football between two teams of horses with a couple of ranch hands (Jake & Ennis?) showing surprise that they went for a field goal instead of trying for a touchdown. In 2004 Bud updated the ad, in conjunction with the video-replay arguments of that season, showing: the same teams, but with a Zebra acting as referee and viewing a replay under the infamous ‘Ref-Tarp”
  • A few years back, CareerBuilder.com unleashed “Chimps” on us. Each ad poked fun at a guy whose career is flagging because he — literally — works with a bunch of “no-good stinkin’ apes” (sorry, couldn’t resist) with a bunch of chimpanzees. In one ad, the chimps place a “whoopee cushion” on his chair. In another, the guy watches in dismay as one chimp kisses the ass of his boss. All I can say about this ad is been there, seen that. Ads with animals are big in the Super Bowl, but this one proves its popularity again and again because so many people can relate to the imagery and intent. (Show of hands, who here has worked with “chimps” before? Come on, MD, Dubya, I know you guys probably have…)
  • Another one that is one of my favorites (mainly because I LOVE Tabasco sauce), is the ad that shows a calmly gent sitting on a front porch in the bayou, eating pizza that he keeps throwing Tabasco sauce onto. Then we see an image of a mosquito drinking his blood, the mosquito flies off and promptly explodes due to the heat of the Tabasco sauce… brilliant and simple at the same time.
  • GoDaddy.com. Picture below. ‘Nuff said.

That’s it, my list of some of the all-time favorite Super Bowl ads.

Agree? Disagree? Leave me a comment and let me know some of YOUR favorite ads from past Super Bowls… you’ll be glad you did.

And if you want to get a sense of what Super Bowl viewers will be seeing this year, click HERE for a handy SB Ad Chart.

Thursday, February 02, 2006


Let's all remember tomorrow as The Day the Music Died. On February 3, 1959, Buddy Holly (22), The Big Bopper (28), and Richie Valens (17) died in a plane crash soon after taking off from Clear Lake, Iowa. Bopper and Valens had taken the seats of two members of Holly's band, Tommy Allsup and Waylon Jennings. Their music and their all-too short lives will NOT be forgotten.

Happy Groundhog Day!

Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow today so that means six more weeks of winter. My question is: When did winter start?

To help you get through that horrible news, I’ve put together some random Groundhog Day trivia/Q&A/useless knowledge tidbits. Enjoy...

- The groundhog is also known as a woodchuck (Marmota monax) and is a member of the squirrel family eating such things as dandelions, clovers and various grasses.
- Did you know? That the first Groundhog Day was observed in Punxsutawney, PA in 1887.

Top 10 Groundhog Day Movies
10 - Groundhog Day
09 - Groundhog Day
08 - Groundhog Day
07 - Groundhog Day
06 - Groundhog Day
05 - Groundhog Day
04 - Groundhog Day
03 - Groundhog Day
02 - Groundhog Day
01 - Groundhog Day

Nice list huh? What do you expect with what I have to work with?

Top 10 Reasons to Celebrate Groundhog Day

10 - It's on nearly every calendar
09 - It helps relieve Cabin Fever
08 - Spring or not, it's still six weeks till St. Urho's Day
07 - Forecast is no less reliable that any other Weather Service.
06 - At least one of them critters is bound to see things your way
05 - Valentine's Day is just too damn depressing for nerds
04 - Unlike the Easter Bunny, he keeps his dirty paws outside
03 - As was said on the 'oldtime' radio show back in the 'olden days': “The Shadow Knows
02 - It's fun to say “Punxsutawney”
01 - If a rodent can bring us an early spring, more power to him

Random Groundhog Day Musings:
Allow me to get political with this next one:
Q: What's the difference between Groundhog Day and President Bush's State of the Union Address?
A: One is a meaningless ritual wherein we look to a creature of little intelligence to prognosticate for us... the other involves a woodchuck. [rimshot] (Thank you, I'm here all week, try the veal... or the Groundhog)

And this one:
“On Groundhog Day, old timers think they can predict whether it's going to be an early spring or six more weeks of winter by whether or not the groundhog sees his shadow, or, as President Bush calls it, ‘reliable intelligence’.”
- Jay Leno

“The groundhog is like most other prophets; it delivers its prediction and then disappears.”
- Bill Vaughn

What else has happened on February 2 throughout the years?
1653 - New Amsterdam (later renamed New York City) is incorporated.
1709 - Alexander Selkirk is rescued from a shipwreck on a deserted island. This would inspire the writing of the book "Robinson Crusoe" by Daniel 'No Relation to Willem' Defoe.
1880 - The first electric streetlight is installed in Wabash, Indiana.
1940 - Frank Sinatra debuts with the Tommy Dorsey orchestra.
1945 - World War II: US President Franklin D. Roosevelt & British Prime Minister Winston Churchill leave to meet with Soviet leader Joseph Stalin at the Yalta Conference.
1979 - Sid Vicious dies of a heroin overdose.

How about a Groundhog Day drinking game?
This is a very simple game. Watch the movie “Groundhog's Day” and take a shot for every new ‘day’ that Bill Murray lives again. Especially fun is the multiple slapping scenes. Each slap is obviously another day, so you may have to count the number of slaps, stop the tape and catch up. This all happens when he tries killing himself over and over, and over and over and over and, well, you get the idea. (Hint: By the end of the game, each participant should have done 42 shots. Remember, as with any drinking game... know your limitations)

Did you know?
… that Punxsutawney Phil has seen his shadow the last 7 years.
… that the movie “Groundhog Day” with Bill Murray was filmed in Woodstock, Illinois.
… that like the shadow disappearing after the groundhog sees it; Andie MacDowell’s career suffered the same fate after appearing in this movie?
The story of Groundhog Day.
That pig farmers have never done well in the United States as most Americans prefer beef to pork. Granted, hamburger is an American favorite but, in a little known secret, actually contains no ham whatsoever.

The porcine raisers were hopeful to see a significant increase in their business after the health scares about beef and Upton Sinclairs novel “The Jungle”, but most of those benefits had gone to the poultry and fish industries and sales of ham and bacon remained virtually unchanged.

Because of this, The National Porcine Association hired a major Madison Avenue advertising firm to boost sales of pork products and they decided on an intensive campaign to saturate magazines, television and radio with ads urging people to eat pork patties. The campaign was given an extra boost when Congress was convinced to designate the second of February as the day when every family would be urged to eat pork sausage. That day would be celebrated nationally, of course, as Ground, Hog, Day.

To get a real history of the day, click HERE.
And consider this...
...and one day, sick and tired of having to showcase themselves on every February 2nd, the Groundhogs rose up and attacked their human masters...