There are only a select few times when I actually laugh uncontrollably when I’m totally alone. I think uncontrollable laughter when you are all alone is kind of embarrasing, cause there’s no one to laugh along with you…

… but this time I couldn’t help myself!

I have finally found someone who took everything I feel about Simon Cowell and wrote it down in a heartfelt, lovely song.

Here it is in all its brilliance: (this is worth every second, trust me)

I echo all those words. Simon you are great person. Cause you give everyone a chance to sing on the free media.

Only my hometown of Dallas could produce such amazing talent!

I’d also like to show you one more piece of… ummm… talent…

This girl was very concerned that in her embrace we might just see a little more than we bargained for:


It was a little funnier in the video, but she was pulling the back of her dress down. Good girl, but next time, just wear a longer skirt that doesn’t bring so many.. errr… liabilities with it.

American Idol Season 7 Begins!

Well everyone, welcome to the American Idol blogs for 2008!

Since I have radically expanded this blog thing since last year, let me just explain for all the noobs. Although I had watched American Idol during Seasons 2 and 3, I didn’t really get into American Idol until Season 5. Since then, I have had a great time pundit-izing the singers, judges, and basically everything during this awkward rise to the top.

At times I feel as though I am blood brothers with Simon Cowell. If I were him, I would bear the same look of desperation… “please let me out of this monster I have created!”

This was my favorite clip of the evening… In this telling moment we learn yet another endearing thing about Simon’s personality… the man actually has NO empathetic bone in his body… good for him!

Now to the freaks of the evening… cause honestly, that’s what we tune in for at this stage of the show. In fact, I wont’ blog on EVERY audition episode, cause mostly, there’s not much to say. It’s just more of the freaks. They didn’t even deserve their 2 minutes of air time, and certainly don’t deserve to be re-acknowleged on this blog for an entry in the annals of time. (are you listening to me CLOAK BOY! Get a vlog if you want to command people’s interest in such a desperate way…)

Time has been nice to the AI crew. Nice to know Paula doesn’t age and Randy never gets skinnier. Simon is the only one who’s gotten visibly older as the series has progressed. Paula’s teeth keep getting whiter too. What shade of white comes after “above the brightness of the sun”?!? Wow! Nice chompers. Apparently, she gave her doctor’s card to Elliot Yamin who, incidentally, also gained a great brilliant set since his Idol days. But I digress.

It appears we have another great season brewing. The black chick with the “challenged” child at the end of day one was great, and the MORMON chick at the end of day 2 was good too. Now… I know she didn’t come out and say it, but my Mormo-Dar was going off like mad! She’s originally from Mesa, AZ (a town with a huge mormon community), she has never seen and R rated movie because “her parents taught her and that is now her own decision”, she has that tender, cutesie naivety you can smell a half mile away, and she is a nanny who says “I can’t wait to have my own kids.” Whatever.

Now… this year we’re adding another dimension to the AI blogs.. you get to comment, and I want to HEAR YOU! I know you’re reading, so tell me where I’m on (99% of the time) and where I’m off (it’s happened like once…)

Thanks for reading, and a happy Idol season to all!

Mitt Takes the Gold

Mitt Romney finally won the Gold. It wasn’t in Iowa or New Hampshire, like we worked for and anticipated, but it was in his ‘home’ state of Michigan.

Just when people were starting to forget about him, when the press stalled and when people were talking withdrawl… let me just remind you…

  • Mitt is in FIRST place in number of delegates among all the candidates at this point.
  • Mitt has raised the MOST money among all the republicans
  • Mitt is the BEST candidate if you are concerned about the economy. (If we do slide into a ‘bagel’ you can bet his numbers will spike)
  • oh yeah.. and there’s all these reasons too!

Go Mitt!

Your Own Personal Bagel

Listening to the radio whilst (no one uses that fabulous word anymore) coming to work today I was listening to two of the country’s economists (read: blowhards) speculate about what the current stat of our economy is, whether or not we were headed into a recession, and whether or not we are actually in one (and we don’t know it yet).

So… I came to work and looked up the word ‘recession’. Recession (thanks, wikipedia) is defined as “two or more quarters of negative economic growth or negative gross domestic product.”

This reminds me of bagels. Let me explain. On one of my favorite episodes of The West Wing, there is a fear of economic downturn sweeping through the staff. Josh walks into a meeting and just flat out says the word ‘recession’ and he immediately get shushed and given dirty looks. Apparently it’s bad luck to speak such words, so you use the harmless euphemism: a “bagel.”


So is our country headed toward a ‘bagel’?

One of these economists actually had an interesting thought. When they started talking about consumer spending, they said that surprisingly consumer spending has continued as if there were no economic problems on the horizon. So people obviously didn’t want to accept the thought that the economy might be slipping, and people aren’t really feeling the pinch of a recession just yet.

So the question is… are you having your own personal recession yet? Most of us who are steadily employed have a pretty “fixed income.” So usually, if a recession hits, it hits some people extremely hard (they lose their employment), while the rest of us just lose opportunity (fewer raises, bonuses, etc). When people ask “how bad will the recession be?” what they are really asking is, “is it going to threaten my job?”

So the idea is… all economics are local, right? So… anyone here feeling the effects of the economic slowdown?

I have felt them in two conflicting ways… 1) my retirement fund slowed growth last year by about 8%. Betting on a slipping economy, and being young and willing to take the risk, I changed over 50% into foreign investments, due to the weakness of the dollar. Hopefully that will perform better this year.

On the other hand, though, I’ve been starting a business… an expensive venture, but which is already showing promising financial futures. I’m not getting rich or anything, but it’s paying for itself, and has growth indications.

I personally think this will be a mild ‘bagel’ if it’s a ‘bagel’ at all, mostly because of the weakness of the dollar and the ubiquity of the global economy. Exports will raise and foreign investment in the US will increase (speculators looking for a deal on a sure thing). This will create jobs and stimulate growth once more.

So, stay tuned… we’ll see where this thing goes. One thing’s for certain, it’s way too early to tell.

If it is a bagel, hopefully it’s smothered in strawberry cream cheese!

If anyone is to topple Microsoft, now is the time…

I was going to the bathroom today, and it dawned on me… (as things typically do when I’m in my primeval “think tank”) If anyone is going to make a dent in Microsoft’s operating system dominance, NOW is the time!

Microsoft unleashed its Vista operating system to the public, to find it very poorly received. In the past, hoards clamored to upgrade every OS. Corporate IT departments worked around the clock to prepare for the new challenges and bugs that each new OS would bring, and pushed for early adoption due to the desirable new features. Vista adoption in Corporate America has been slow… very slow, and it’s apparent that Microsoft is losing steam.

What do they do next? They no longer have a ubiquitous platform. Their user base is fragmenting into those who really likes XP, those whose machines won’t support Vista, new users who are stuck with Vista, and then those ardent Vista HATERS who will stop at nothing to point out its failures and shortcomings.

So if you are Microsoft, having recently lost your founder and visionary, what do you do next?

If Apple/OSX or any Linux desktop OS is going to emerge to compete with Microsoft, now is the time.

Will my iLife take over my realLife?

I recently had several friends join Facebook who swore they never would. One described himself as a “convert.” I guess his mom or wife sold him of its virtues.But with the advent and growing ubiquity of Facebook, it appears that social networking is here to stay, not just a passing fad.The real question is… what does having such an extensive online life and presence do to your real life? Will there be a time when your iLife takes over your realLife?

There are two great myths about the internet. 1) That the internet is anonymous, and 2) that the memory of the internet is fleeting. (There’s actually a third that the internet is free… but I’ll leave that one for another day)

Since we specialize in debunking such myths here at WhiteEyebrows, let me just break this one down for you…

1) You are identifiable on the internet. Like it or not, your internet service provider knows who you are and where you’ve been. They can be (and have been) forced to give up that information to the RIAA, the MPAA, and also the federal government.

2) The internet has a LONG, LARGE memory. I will illustrate with a story:
I once wrote a post on a newsgroup when I was 16 years old. You know, when you’re 16, life is just so small and simple, and mixed up. What I thought was a little joke, a pun, or play on words, other people found quite offensive. This was before Google, before online forums, before yahoo even.

One day I was busy at the new national past time, Googling myself, when I ran across this newsgroup post almost 10 years later. I was so embarrassed to read what I had so insensitively written, and slightly entertained at the response I evoked then.

Yes, the internet has a LONG memory, and each new advance in search and social networking will certainly build on the past, make ever more accessible those huge server farms and databanks bursting at the seams with the intimate details and private snapshots of your life.

And that’s the real problem, isn’t it? The internet only offers snapshots, glimpses into who we really are as people. Technology offers no essence of the human. Social networking sites can offer an opportunity for someone to form a perception of another person, but it can never fully and accurately reproduce the essence of me.

This is why online dating is so difficult. It requires either a high level of perceptiveness or delusion. It’s not that people try to be dishonest, it’s that they simply can’t ever be complete, or offer an entire picture.


I suppose it’s poetic justice that I’m pontificating about this on a blog, yet another forum for my inner beliefs and feelings to be made manifest on the web. Will I reread these posts in a few years and feel embarrased? Ashamed? What happens when we start electing presidents, congressmen, and school board members who have grown up online? Will someone’s myspace profile be considered evidence in a court of law? Will my politically moderate rantings on this blog prevent me from ever changing my positions to be more liberal or conservative, or will they be forever held against me?

This is an issue that celebrities and politicians have been dealing with for much longer. Where does their private life begin and their public life end? In a way, we are all entering their world, making our private lives much more public and accessible.

I’m not an internet alarmist. I don’t think we should shut down the web or anything.  If we did that I’d have to quickly go find a lot of hobbies to replace my eHobbies, a real job to replace my technology job, a new side job to replace my eSideBusiness, and also a real pet to replace my ePet…

Seriously though, we need to enter this era of the iLife with great caution, and maybe be willing to cut each other some slack while we watch each other grow up online.

The Obsession of Being First

blue-ribbon.jpgToday is the day of the New Hampshire Primary, the first presidential primary in the nation… kind of. We saw last year the scrambling and craziness that ensued when several states tried to put their primaries ahead of New Hampshire and Iowa. Wyoming actually succeeded, paying the meager price of only having 1/2 of its delegates actually be able to attend the national convention. So it’s only “pseud0-first”… it’s not really first.

Not only is New Hampshire obsessed with being first, there are certain small towns in New Hampshire who hold their primary at 12:01am on the day of the primary, making them the FIRST of the FIRST. The most prominent of these towns are Hart’s Location and Dixville Notch. With 42 total residents of voting age, Hart’s Location is a great little voter microcosm for the world, and was fictionalized on a memorable episode of The West Wing entitled “Hartsfield’s Landing.”

But what is with this crazy obsession to be first?

When I was in grade school, it was a big deal to be first. You always wanted to be first in line after recess, first to turn in your work (no matter how sloppy), first to finish lunch, first to be ready to go home. Some times when your glee would reach peak levels, you would scream out “first!!!” as if to declare your order superiority.

Having a last name which started with “A” only made this problem worse for me. We often lined by in alphabetical order by last name. This put me right at the front of the line, and usually first. Except for those years when whats-his-name Adams was in my class… oooh how I hated him and the “D” in his last name!

Well, the good news is, we grow out of grammar school and we become pimple faced teenagers. Suddenly it’s no longer cool to be first… or eager… or even conscious. Just try teaching a group of teenagers in Sunday School. You ask them a stupid question, and they look at you like an idiot. You ask them a good, thought provoking question, and they look at you like an idiot. I’m not sure if it’s puberty or what… no one wants to be first, and no one wants to stick out.

Except me. I always stuck out, what with my white eyebrows.

But, you know, some little part of us never forgets how awesome it is to be first. We first-hogs just want to be first for the sake of being first, mostly. It makes us feel superior. It makes us feel smart and capable and better than everyone else, even when there’s no logical basis for that conclusion.

So New Hampshire… Iowa… everyone… chill out. You might be first, but you aren’t the big deal you think you are. California, New York, Florida, Pennsylvania and Texas are all waiting to show you who is last the best of all the game!