Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Watch the Morning News With Me

The Courtyard by Marriott just off the airport here in Detroit is a delightful spot to wait for my adventure to begin.  Everyone is friendly, my breakfast was included in the (very good) price for the room, and I got to sit in a little alcove, all by myself, watching my own little television.

I never watch tv during breakfast.  I read Dear Abby and the comics and I watch the hot air balloons out my window.  I don't want someone else to set my agenda.  That will happen soon enough, as the day progresses.  In the morning, first thing, I am my own person.  I'm not grumpy, I'm in charge.

But here, on a business trip the details of which will be shared as soon as they are un-embargoed, with my fellow travelers hunched over laptops and smartphones or sharing sales reports at the surrounding tables, my little slice of heaven includes a tv set tuned to CNN's morning report.  The sound is turned down, but there are so many words on the screen the voices are unnecessary.  I can keep up at my own pace without the reporter-with-too-much-makeup telling me where my brain should be.

It was a busy, busy day:

Iran is making a movie in response to Argo.  I don't know why this strikes me as funny; perhaps it's the power of the big screen prompting a political reaction in a country that is struggling to stay out of the 21st century.
Coca-Cola is targeting obesity, just like Biggest Loser.  I didn't have the sound turned up, so I can't tell you what the fit and happy people in the commercials were saying, but the words were potent:  all calories count, no matter the source.  That's the same lesson Biggest Loser was teaching last night, and my mind went to Dr. Joanna (doesn't she have a last name?). A pediatrician/nutritionist, she visited the child contestants' homes and went through their pantries and refrigerators.  "Real soda?!" she squealed as she poured it down the sink.  She advised making the home a safety zone, without temptations.  She reminded the kids that they could have chocolate, or soda, or a cookie on occasion, but that their homes should be a Safety Zone, without temptations.

I was reminded of Indra Nooyi's keynote at BlogHer '11.  She's the CEO of PepsiCo and a mother.  My notes are filled with inspiring quotes: "We cannot enhance the shareholder at the risk of the stakeholder." "Companies should do better by being better."  "Capitalism without conscience is dangerous."  "Lean into the responsibility."  It seems to me that Coke is taking a page from Pepsi's book.
President Obama is being blasted for not being social enough with Congress.  This is a man who tries his best to be home for dinner with his girls every night at 6.  I'm sorry that Congress wants him out on the cocktail circuit at that time, but I'm happier having a dad-at-dinner president, myself.
Retail sales numbers are down, but bolstered somewhat by car sales.  I'm in Detroit where all the car ads on tv are offering Auto Show Specials. It's nice to know they're working.
Our President says "We are not a deadbeat nation," as he is vilified by Republicans for refusing to negotiate over paying bills we've already incurred.  Something has to change, that's for sure, but Mr. Obama is correct.  Haven't any of our elected representatives who are refusing to write the checks ever tried to balance their household accounts?  Haven't they seen how late charges mount up on those MasterCard bills?
Lindsay Lohan is in jail for the 20th time. Last weekend, Little Cuter and I were bemoaning the fact that our favorite kid actress (cf. Parent Trap) is caught in such a downhill spiral. Poor baby.... can I take her home with me?
The US is considering sending logistical and intelligence support to Mali, according to Leon Panetta.  Doesn't he remember the same, tiny beginnings to our involvement in Viet Nam in the late 1950's and early '60's?  I have to do some thinking about our role as policeman for the world, but this raises the hackles on the back of my neck.
Chuck Rangel is complaining that there is a lack of diversity in President Obama's cabinet.  I'm going with Big Cuter's analysis - we are post racial, post gender, post sexuality and this shouldn't be an issue.  I'm smiling at the notion of a black congressman accusing a black president of not looking at race.  Wasn't that the whole idea in the first place?
Lance Armstrong did dope.  Oprah got him to say so.  Cheating and coercion aside, I wonder if he'd share his formulas with me?  I've got lots of rehabbing left to do, and I sure could use a boost.
Clarence Thomas actually spoke from the bench (let's discuss race/diversity/competence in this context sometime, Rep. Rangel), 50 Florida teachers are involved in a child-sex scandal, and just when I thought it coudn't get any sillier/annoying/ridiculous/appalling it turns out that we've found Jimmy Hoffa!

I can't wait to get home to the lovelorn and the jokes.


  1. This is exactly why I don't watch the news anymore. And although you can get "news" from the Daily Show, I still don't consider it news per se. I cannot focus watching the news. It's all over the place.

    I too like having a President that puts his family before cocktails and schmoozing. That's the way it should be.

    I'm happy Coke is looking at the obesity in this country. We don't have any soda in our house. And I don't drink it. I found it was much easier to lose weight by removing it from my diet. It's helped immensely.

    Hope you are having fun.

    Megan xxx

  2. TBG watches Brian Williams. I watch John Daly. When the flu gets as more coverage than Mali I know our priorities are screwy.


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