Tuesday, September 28, 2010

3 Year Anniversary- my gift to you

This week Chaka's World is enjoying it's 3 year anniversary. This reminded me of how when you start blogging, it is kind of like starting medical school when they tell you to look at the person on your right and your left and then tell you that only one of you will be there by the end of the year. Maybe the medical school analogy was not so good after all. We all know blogging is much more difficult than medical school.

After 3 years, many of the people who started blogs at the same time are no longer around. It is always sad when you come upon a blog that has not been updated for a year or more. Especially when you liked what the person had to contribute. Losing comrades is always difficult, but I shouldn't always assume it's a tragedy. Maybe they realized that they have a life away from their computer keyboard and they probably pity us for all the time we "waste" blogging.

Anyway, I'd like to celebrate this milestone with some prizes and give aways. Please feel free to send them to me. But seriously folks, as my gift to you I am finally changing my profile picture from a hairy neanderthal boy to my true identity. This is the ultimate gesture of friendship since it makes me more vulnerable not only to my blogging friends, but also to Internet freaks and stalkers. This is probably not as exciting as when Tony Stark, Bruce Wayne, or Clark Kent reveal that they are the men behind the super hero, but it is the best I can do with my limited resources. Have a great week.

Tom (aka Chaka)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Apple Fritters

Fridays are usually a slow day for blogging. I've noticed that most people save their big posts for the beginning or the middle of the week.  I thought today would be a good time to share some brief thoughts about a topic that is dear to me.

I'd like to express my undying love for apple fritters. They are one of the greatest desserts to ever come out of the pastry family. What makes them so special is that they are a hybrid between cinnamon rolls, a donut, and apple pie. I also appreciate the fact that there are small pieces of apple in them so I can attempt to justify that they are healthy. I know this is a lie since every time I eat one, I go into a sugar coma and just sit still and sweat while my ears ring for a few hours.

How can something that looks like a diseased organ recently removed from a person's abdomen taste so good? The only thing that could make them better would be to change the name. I don't like the sound of fritter. I suggest we call them deep fried battered apple pastry instead. That has a much better ring to it.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Suggestions for your Profile or Bio

I was recently looking through Blogger profiles for people that have similar interests as I do and I got a kick out of some of the profiles I came across. I was intrigued by some of the information that people chose to disclose. I know you always want to paint the best picture of yourself in a social forum like Facebook, a dating service, or your Blogger profile, but occasionally people decide to include certain details about themselves that just don't seem to fit or that would best be left undisclosed.

Sometimes you think you have someone figured out and that they fit a particular stereotype, then they throw in a disturbing detail which creates an inconsistency. Here are a couple examples of the kind of stuff I am talking about.

Interests: pottery, politics, cooking, Insane Clown Possey, and scapbooking.
Interests: hiking, new age music, vegan, Russian literature, and monster truck ralleys.
Interests: Ultimate Fighting, Partying, Barbecuing, French manicures, and Pittsburgh Steelers.
Movies/TV: Jack Ass, South Park, Sense and Sensibility, and Jersey Shore.

Then you get the TMI crowd. These are people who like to disclose what ailments they suffer from as part of their regular introduction. Of course people are free to do whatever they want, but launching into your problems right off the bat is not the best way to draw people to you. I suggest not mentioning words like toenail fungus or halitosis as part of your bio.

The worst thing I've found with blogger profiles are people who use immature avatars like Neanderthal boys as part of their profile because they are not willing to reveal their true identity.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Picture of the Month Sept. 2010

I don't want to bash any one's precious hippie movement memories from the 60's, but I'm sure grateful that I was born at the tail end of it and my kids will never come across one of these pictures with me in it on the Internet. It's bad enough that they have evidence of the kind of clothes I wore in the 70's.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

If I Were In Charge...

I know it's easy to criticize our leaders and be an armchair quarterback when it comes to politics, but I think we can do better. With local elections coming up in a couple months, I have been thinking about what changes I would make to improve the world if I were in charge. After some careful thought, here are 8 projects I would attempt to tackle.

1) I promise to change the tomato to the vegetable category where it belongs. I don't care if it fits the definition of a fruit, it should be a vegetable!

2) I would out law all of the lame applications on Facebook and make it illegal to solicit anyone for mafia, farming, vampire, or any other kind of "bug your friends" games.

3) What ever happened to opposite day? I would get this day re-instituted so we could wear our clothes backwards and drive on the wrong side of the street once a year.

4) Does anyone besides me get uncomfortable saying the word "legume"? I would either find a better name for that food or completely remove all legumes from our food supply so people wouldn't have to feel awkward anymore.

5) I think it is divisive to separate people into groups according to the month they are born. I think it would be better if all humans belonged to one of two groups. Those who really like to sneeze and those who don't.

6) As some of you know, I am a personal trainer. Sometimes when I tell that to people they laugh and say "no seriously, what do you do?" I hate it when that happens. I would make that a federal offense.

7) My policies and programs would not be limited to planet earth. I would repeal the recent legislation and restore Pluto back to the status of a full blown planet. This would also help me when I run for Intergalactic chancellor down the road.

8) Finally, I'd also like to find replacement words from anonymous and unanimous. I know the difference between these two words, but I consistently mix them up and make a fool of myself. Nobody wants a foolish looking leader.

Some of you might think these things are trivial, but I think sometimes it is the little details in life that make all the difference. I am chaka.com and I approve this message.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Double Meanings and Slang

Jimmy Kimmel has a regular feature on his show called "This Week in Unnecessary Censorship". He shows clips from TV and the news, but then they bleep out certain innocent words so it sound like the person was swearing or saying something too vulgar for TV. It is horrible. It has caused me to develop a new fear. It is the fear is that I will say a word or phrase that has a dirty double meaning that I am unaware of.

I once had a coworker who was leaving work early on a Friday. He said he was excited to go "get some action". He meant he was excited to start his weekend, but he had no idea of the connotations associated with that phrase. I have another friend who regularly uses a particular word as a synonym for "bunch" or "many", but when I Googled it I was shocked with what came up. To quote Enigo Montoya of the Princess Bride, "I don't think that word means what you think it means." I am not familiar with all the slang and innuendo of certain nasty words or phrases so I am paranoid about saying something bad by accident.

Double Entendre and innuendo is expected in James Bond movies and popular music lyrics,  but I don't want to be accused of it if I had no intention of doing so. It is a sad day when innocent people can carry on a normal conversation and at the same time be guilty of spewing out some filthy messages due to all the slang and double meanings in our culture. For those of you who may be familiar with the multiple meanings of certain words or phrases, I ask that you show mercy when you encounter an innocent and naive victim and refrain from saying "That's what she said".

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Check This Out!

Some time ago I threatened to shut down Chaka's World if I didn't get 100 followers by a certain date. My plan worked, but it made me uncomfortable making threats like a terrorist in order to reach my goal. It has been over a year and I need another favor, but this time I'll be a little more mature about it. As some of you know, I have 3 separate blogs, and lately I've been putting a lot of time into my fitness blog at Your Fitness Quest. I've been working hard to improve the search engine rankings, get better web recognition, and increase traffic to that site.

Anyway, as part of that process, I am looking for more followers on that blog and would like to invite anyone so inclined to do so. If fitness posts about nutrition and exercise are not your thing, then don't worry about it, but I think it's a pretty helpful site for the average person. It's not a fitness journal blog about myself, but instead is aimed at helping regular people to live healthier lives.

Thanks to those of you who are inclined to do so. I will be getting back to my regular routine on this blog in a day or two and you should be seeing more mediocre posts again about random topics.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Mean People Suck

I was recently reading the local news online and made the mistake of clicking on the comments of other readers after I read the story. I should know better, but my curiosity gets me sucked in and I occasionally read the comments.  It doesn't take long before it turns into a mob mentality of rude people arguing and calling each other names. I'm amazed at how many people love being a troll and getting others riled up. I wonder if those same people would act the same way if their true identity was known. 

These people remind me of terrorists who make threats and strut their stuff while wearing a ski mask. I see a similar trend with comments on YouTube. You can look up something as innocent as gardening tips and within 4 or 5 comments, you have people dropping F bombs on each other and arguing. It shocks me to see how much hate and disrespect people have bottled up inside.

It made me really grateful for my blog. I try not to be too opinionated or to make waves. I intentionally avoid controversial subjects in an effort to maintain a sense of civility and to make Chaka's World a friendly place. Occasionally I may still offend someone like the death metal enthusiast, but overall it works out okay. 

Anyway, I'd like to thank my readers for having manners and civility. Even when they do disagree, they've done so in a respectful way unlike many mean people on the Internet these days.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

What is Real?

One of the great challenges in life is trying to determine if something is real or fake. Some things are just a bogus hoax, but others are legit. Some famous examples include Bigfoot, UFO's, the Lochness Monster, conspiracy theories, and I can't believe it isn't butter.

I occasionally run across stories in the news or see clips on the Internet that make me say "That can't be real". These things range from the tragic to the ridiculous. One sad example of this is the Westboro Baptist Church, known for picketting soldiers funerals and taunting their families. They also do stuff like that to other groups they hate, which includes just about everyone but themselves.  Apparently it's not a joke, they are just really messed up people.

Sometimes I can't tell what is real because the special effects are getting too realistic these days.Young kids today have no idea how crappy special effects used to be. With the technological advances of photo shop and CGI I sometimes questions the trick basketball shots by Dude Perfect and other amazing things I see on YouTube.

Most recently I have been astonished with the candidacy of Basil Marceaux who is running for Governor of Tennessee. He has gone viral on the Internet over the last month. Can this guy be real or is this just a joke on us and he is just acting out a character like Paul Reubens does with Pee Wee Herman? I still can't tell. He's a mix between Homestar Runner and Captain Kangaroo and he's either a lunatic or a genius. I still can't decide.

So, I'm kind of confused when it comes to reality. I guess seeing Inception didn't help things either.