Sarah Palin’s Per Diem

9 09 2008

Ahh, poor politicians and their ongoing frat party in this nation’s capitol. Let’s be clear, both sides are touting change as being the only option to save our nation and yada, yada, yada.

I’m all for change. I think change is good.

But, and this goes for both parties, words are meaningless unless actions accompany those words.

I haven’t been sitting over here at Chez Coma busting out on Sarah Palin, who I still think has little experience to take on what could be the most important office in recent history. (And, of course, hanging out with carnies and cool people, living my life the way I want to.)

No, but I also want to say that that Gov. Palin’s actions aren’t lining up with her words. I realize that every government official gets a per diem. I’ve no problem with that when It’s company business and running a state is a company.

What I do have a problem with is charging the taxpayers of her state for this after only 19 months in office:

She wrote some form of “Lodging — own residence” or “Lodging — Wasilla residence” more than 30 times at the same time she took a per diem, according to the reports. In two dozen undated amendments to the reports, the governor deleted the reference to staying in her home but still charged the per diem.

If you are hanging out at your own house, why in the world would you charge the state you run for per diem?

I realize the first family is going to get some perks as well but the Palins’ charged the state of Alaska more than I make in a year including this:

The family also charged for flights around the state, including trips to Alaska events such as the start of the Iditarod dog-sled race and the Iron Dog snowmobile race, a contest that Todd Palin won.

Granted, Palin has spent less than the governor she replaced but I still can’t help but question $707 per night hotel bills.

I can’t wait for the day I see a politician stay at a Super 8 like the rest of us. Or even a Marriot which is a luxury for many of us.

Politics as usual. We can talk about change all we want but the new school is just the same as the old school, it just has a new coat of paint and that’s about it.

The Red Bra

9 09 2008

The domain has to be transferred so that will happen a bit later.

As I have told you guys repeatedly, my tech skills suck big wads of carpet.

Now, I have to tell you the story of my trip to Nashville. I went up, we worked on the new blog (or I watched rather very intrigued by it all) and after a bit of visiting for a few minutes, we headed back to Hoots.

The Pilot station at Exit 143 hates me. Last year, you might remember my Elvis Impersonators wreck at this infamous truck stop. I think I’m jinxed at this place.

And, Sunday night, there was proof of this. PROOF.

I’ve seen a lot of I-40 lately, and as human being are wont to do, I needed to use, as my mother would call it, the little girls’ room. Every other place was closed so we hauled into the dreaded Pilot due to the only other option being the Adult Book Store at Bucksnort, which to give it credit, was packed with truckers.

So I go hauling in to do my bidness, which I did, and went to the sink to wash my hands.

Then the horror happened.

A young mother comes hauling at lightening speed into the bathroom with a young boy. The water is going into the sink and my hands are all soaped up. Apparently the little boy wasn’t feeling well because he barfed right into the basin which of course, splashed on me. Now, I’m a support system with vomit. You puke, I puke.

I didn’t but it was all over me. The mother was apologizing and grabbing towels for me and her son who was still a bit green.

I cleaned up as best I could and finally got back to the car where Squirrel Queen asked “Are you sick?”

I told her the story. No, I wasn’t sick but apparently Junior was.

And the shirt came OFF.

So if you saw a chubby woman in a red bra riding down I-40 Sunday night. Umm, that would have been me.

Actually, it was kind of free-spirited and refreshing.

Just saying.

Move Is Complete Due To Cool Dudes

8 09 2008

Dear Campers,

We are up due to Chris Wage, who you need to buy every picture he has ever taken, and Sadcox, you need to give your undying support.

Change your dang feeds.

We are at


And, you know, thanks.

Ahh, she’s fine, just tired last week at the Tennessee Soybean Festival.

Come on over. I have to tell you I rode home in only a bra yesterday from Nashville.

Update: Tomorrow here.

Update On Moving Day

8 09 2008

I went to Nashville for what seemed about a grand total of 22 minutes and Chris helped me out to get Newscoma all hosted yet we couldn’t get all the archives over which I’m working on right now. I’m also looking at some themes.

It’s weird, I have categories and tags out the wazoo but the posts and comments are evading me. I’m also trying to figure out how to redirect this blog to that one.

With that said, I have the technical abilities of roadkill.

It’s coming along, albeit slowly.

Changes Brewing At Newscoma

6 09 2008

Tomorrow, I’m going to be changing some of Newscoma and, admittedly, I’m a bit scared because it’s change. Change is terrifying.

This has been in the works for most of the summer, but I’m moving Newscoma to where I can take ads. I’ve been asked and, for a long time, I resisted the idea. I asked some great minds like Jackson Miller in a series of emails in the spring (he is truly one of the coolest people ever) and Sharon Cobb was one of most supportive people ever about going ad-based. Heather and Ivy have also been a great inspiration and I thank them for fielding emails from me when I was wigging out a bit. And Sadcox is the dude. He has been just wonderful. My buddy, Chris, is going to help me out here with the techy stuff as I’m a moron about certain things. My main hesitation is actually learning widgets and stuff that I didn’t have to use before. I’ll learn it but it may take me some time.

As I said, bear with me.

So Sunday is the big day. And, as I walk into a bit of the unknown, I’m worried that you guys will wander off.

I started a magazine in 1993 and it was a lot of fun. We had a good time with it and it’s still around although I’m not a part of it anymore. I kind of feel the same way I did back then. Anxious, a bit excited and, you know, afraid of failure and burning in a huge blaze of public humiliation.

Basically, nothing is going to change here other than new digs, you will see some ads and possibly some collaborations with some folks who are working in the news business.

So, if it’s a bit wonky around here in the next few days, please bear with me. I’m trying to be transparent about it all so if you come to a page that has weird code on it taking you to a midget porn site or something equally as freaky, send me an email. Once it’s all done, change those bookmarks and your feeds (you can already) to

As we launch the new site, I have some giveaways next week from the Red State Update guys so stay tuned to that as well.

And send me some courage, as change freaks me the hell out.

She's Coming Too

Ground Zero At Tennessee Soybean Festival

6 09 2008
Corey Smith

Corey Smith

Voodoo Village

Voodoo Village

Badger Beths Birthday

Badger Beth's Birthday

Mabel And Cancer (Yes, Thats His Name)

Mabel And Cancer (Yes, That's His Name)

Qualifications To Be Vice President

6 09 2008

As many of you know, I ran Mabel for president and then tried to create a variety of political scandals for her as she was clueless to her candidacy, and, well, she eats things she creates.

I thought her character might be attacked, so we let her go back to eating kibble and doing her pub crawl, which she did last night.

But I have to point you to Sparkles Plenty, who has outlined her reasons on why she would make a great vice-president.

Anyway, now that all that has been cleared up, I know that I am supremely qualified to be your Vice President. Here is why I expect your vote in November:

1. I know how to drive a car.
2. I can open jars all by myself.
3. I always never forget to clean out the lint filter on the dryer.
4. My favorite soup is potato.
5. I don’t spit when I talk. Usually.

Mabel endorses Kristina for V.P. enthusiastically.

Bobblehead George And HAEA

5 09 2008

I’m posting about this because I know Jim and I dig him. He’s trying to raise awareness and some money for HAEA.

Here’s what’s up:

“Where’s Bobblehead George?”( the brainchild of Jim Reams, an avid sports fan and vice president at Nashville advertising agency Frank/Best International. He had a few business trips planned and decided to snap some photos of the diminutive head-bobbing statue to post on WordPress, a free blog service. Reams asked friends to take Bobblehead George on their trips and he put an email link on the site so people could send in their own submissions. It caught on quickly, and Bobblehead George has been spotted in Gatlinburg, TN, Las Vegas, Nags Head, NC, the San Diego Zoo and as far away as Italy and Greece. There’s even a picture of Bobblehead George with pop icon Jessica Simpson.

In less than two months, the site was ranked 74th on the WordPress “top 100 fastest growing blogs” list. Inspired by the response, Reams decided to put Bobblehead George’s popularity to good use and build a fully functioning website to raise money for a charity near to his heart.

“I have a seven year-old daughter, Sophie, who has Hereditary Angioedema,” says Reams. “It is an inherited disease that causes episodes of acute swelling and inflammation in various parts of the body, both externally and internally. It can be very painful and debilitating, and if it attacks the throat, even fatal. It is quite rare, and there is no cure. I thought maybe I could put Bobblehead George to work to help raise money and awareness.”

There is a lot more over there and, as I said, Jim is one of the good guys. Read what he has to say.

Ham Sushi Rolls

5 09 2008

I am constantly talking about the lack of Japanese food in Hoots. As I would eat it every single day if it was, there is a market for me here, but alas, we only have a Chinese restaurant who has a facsimile of California rolls on their buffet. Hell, its a whopping $2.73 for lunch so what the hay.

But this. Well, here are no words for this.

Yes, that would be ham.

I weep for our future.

BlogHer Nashville

5 09 2008

Once upon a time, there was this girl (well, actually a woman in her 40s) who started a blog to entertain herself. She wrote about politics, weird news, Bigfoot, Zombies, her dog Mabel and stuff that she found amusing. In the beginning, she was delighted as hell to get 25 readers a day and it made her happy.

Then her blog grew a little bit, which she credits to Nashville Is Talking and Brittney Gilbert to a large degree, and she made some friends in the blogging world. Her numbers grew a bit and she found that blogging made the whole world a bit smaller.

Over time, her readership continued to expand and she realized that the world of journalism, media and online networking was changing the game. She was old school, and likened herself to Carl Kolchak to a degree. She saw herself as a grizzled old-school kind of reporter but she knew the industry was changing. She preached about it to the locals, and although they didn’t always listen, she stood firm about what she believed.

She wanted to be a part of the bigger picture.

Nearly three years later, her audience grew a little bit more with the addition of utilizing Twitter. Bloggers she met became good friends, she was given opportunities that she never thought would be given to her in her wildest dreams and, believe me, it was of the good.

She is me.

I will be speaking at BlogHer on October 16 in Nashville. I’m so excited I can’t stand it in what looks to be two different panels.

I’m delighted.

And, to all of you, thanks for coming back here and hanging out with me. Without you, this wouldn’t be happening.

You guys are just incredible.

Feel Good Friday – Corey Smith Edition

5 09 2008

As I have been talking to you about the Soybean Festival going on here in Hoots, I found this video of Corey Smith, who played last night downtown.

Man, he was good. Better than good, actually. The video isn’t the best, but the song is fun.

I gotta tell you, I dug him. And his bass player was phenomenal. The coolest thing was during his sound check, we just sat and watched him. sitting alone on a bleacher. This, my friends, is when Hoots is fun.

Also, go with Badger Beth Happy Birthday today. She is turning 35.

And if you are one of the locals, buy her a beer.

A Black Man From Kenya, A White Man From Kansas

4 09 2008

Wow, this is big news.


H/T Ken Levine

Carnies, Politics And Rural Conversations

4 09 2008

I didn’t see Sarah Palin’s speech last night because I was watching the carnies work, drinking beer and taking pictures at Faith Night at the Tennessee Soybean Festival.

Now before all of this, I had a conversation with my retired alderman friend who I will call Bob because that is his name. He is a devout Republican, and other than tweaking my chains sometimes, we have some pretty good conversations.

We talked about economic development and that rural areas were suffering. He thought Sarah Palin got it, I said I wasn’t so sure about that. He kidded me that at least she wasn’t Muslim. I told him to stop that nonsense and he laughed because he was teasing me. I then asked him how he felt because he’s in his late 60s. He told me he was kinda tired and I came back at him that John McCain was three years older than him.

“Point taken,” he laughed. We do this. It’s fine and it’s between us.

Then we talked about local leadership and I asked him if mayors and reps and the like were being handcuffed to a degree due to the economy.

“They are,” he said. “Money trickles down. It always has. And it goes to where there is already money or a possibility of making money. We don’t have the money we once did. It’s a little bit scary.”

I love talking to people that, although ideologically we are completely different, we are the same in one respect and that is we like Hoots and we want to see it thrive. With the festival going on, there is a little bit of relief and hope of better things although it will be business as usual come Monday. We are anticipating 10,000 people tonight, Friday and Saturday.

This is good.

I wandered off to go see my beloved carnies, one who is apparently named Doorknob, but they were still having no part of me so I bought a polish sausage, took some pics and watched a band sing that was pretty good.

With that all said, I keep going back to my conversation with Bob.

We are all really the same in so many ways.

Grocery Store Blues

4 09 2008

Lynnster breaks it down.

You want my vote in the Presidential election?  Then tell me it is going to stop, and where it’s going to stop, and when it’s going to end, AND make it happen.

Read the whole thing.


4 09 2008

My birthday is October 7th.

I thank you ahead of time.

H/T Cool Buzz

Dermitage Ad Gives Me The Wiggums

3 09 2008

This ad continually freaks me out on so many levels.

We Are Fabulous

3 09 2008

Nice words from Katie Allison Granju and Michael Silence regarding myself, Ol’ Broad and Sharon Cobb.

Tennessee Soybean Festival ’08

3 09 2008

I went back to work full-time yesterday still coming off the ‘roids which gave me a killer headache. I’m not a headache person so I felt like my eyes were falling out, but it was fine.

In Hoots, we are holding the 15th Annual Tennessee Soybean Festival. (Incidentally, Laura Carson, who I pointed out on Sunday, didn’t win the Aimee Mann contest but did win the Best Overall Preliminaries at The Bean’s Talent Show and will be competing in the Mid South Fair in Memphis.She’s also going to see her idol tonight in Nashville. So here’s a shout out for her.)

My cunning plan yesterday was to go and hang out with the carnies who were setting up. I am enamored with carnies every since I saw Robbie Robertson be one in the movie “Carny” but I didn’t see anyone who looked anything like him.

Man, they were a surly bunch.

My aim was to talk to someone who might be from New Orleans as the name of the carnival outfit was Crescent City Amusements. In a moment of trying to dig up a story, I thought someone here would have some insight on Hurricane Gustav. They are from New Orleans but none of the actual carnies are. No dice and they pretty much told me to scram. One female carny told me to basically get lost. So I went and got Badger Beth and returned. Not that Badger could do anything, I just wanted a witness to the snide glory of it all.

Well, they told me three times, so I kept going back. The carnies were not fond of me, so harassing them seemed like a good idea as I apparently needed their approval and adoration. Random Question: Every year they put up a “Help Wanted” sign.

The Sign From Last Year

The Sign From Last Year

Should I apply?

Anyway, in my steroidy head, I decided to go up on top of a building where I could take a picture. However, there was no building to be found and I looked for a couple of hours. (Problem is that many of the building are boarded up.) I’m going to haunt the roof of the local library today. It’s my last best shot.

So, we are honoring the glories of the Soybean. It’s pretty much a fun event.

One thing I think the organizers of this event got right was that there are three nights of entertainment in a stage built smack downtown. Thursday night, Corey Smith is performing (which I hear the college students are stoked about although I have to admit I wasn’t familiar with him.) Friday night, Marshall Tucker and Saturday is Lonestar. So I guess there is something for everyone.

I roamed around as the stage was being built, eyed the carnies who wanted no part of me (WHY DON’T THEY LOVE ME?) as, of course, I’m smitten with them and took some more random shots around town. I checked in at Cadillacs, where some of you know, to see if my zombie-inspired darts had come in yet (They haven’t) and was going to head back to my beloved carnies but Squirrel Queen put a stop to it.

She is more reasonable than I am.

So, I’m guessing this is a Hooterville Exclusive.

Big Daddy- Jerry Reed: This Was Our Thing

2 09 2008


We dug him.

Dang, he was fun.

Don LaFontaine – R.I.P.

2 09 2008

Having been in radio in the past, I always had such fond memories of those guys who did the voiceovers. I just loved trying to figure out where I’d hear that voice before.

Today we have learned that we lost one of the best one.

He was great and influenced a lot of people. He was, indeed, The Voice.

I wish him and his family peace.