Friday, April 27, 2012

What We Have Been Up To...

We have had a busy week this week..hence the lack of posting. Mr. E learned to ride his bike on Monday. He was so proud of himself:o) He came running in the house yelling, "Mommy! I did it. I can ride my bike without training wheels because I believed in myself!"
He's so sweet!

 This is what he learned's called a Joey. It's small, wooden and doesn't have pedals. 
 It took 2 days on the Joey for him to get the whole balancing act down.
 We also had a field trip at the Botanical Gardens.
 They have a butterfly house at the gardens. E almost got one on his finger:o)

 Last night we went to the circus. This was the line into the door. There were people everywhere.
 Some strange and very dangerous looking sculpture outside of the arena.

 National Anthem Elephant

 This part scared me to death. Some of the females were a little temperamental. I said a little prayer for the lion tamer...I just knew he was going to be an evening snack.

We didn't stay for the whole circus. S.R. fell asleep, and the intermission was at 9 p.m. We heard it still had another hour after the intermission. 
Anywho, tomorrow I will be running in a half marathon with some friends. It's my first one, and I am really nervous...mostly of how much I will be hurting afterwards:o)
I am missing out on some super neighborhood yard sales tomorrow morning b/c of the race...BOO! I hope you all have a fantastic weekend! Say a little prayer for me;o)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Business April 25th 2012, "THREE YEAR BIRTHDAY!" Edition


Hey Party People: While you were all busy filing your taxes at the last possible second, The Business, San Francisco’s longest running alternative comedy show and foam party, turned a distinguished THREE YEARS OLD on April 15th.  We’ve survived our terrible two’s (which were not terrible at all).  We’ve made it past the Sophomore Slump (which wasn’t very slumpy at all).  And as you know, three is a very lucky number that is very important to comedy.  So far this year has been the most fun and full collection of shows we’ve ever put on.  THE MAGIC IS WORKING ALREADY!  Please come out this Wednesday night and help celebrate with us and our party pals:

Nato Green will be on hand and ready to party like it’s 2012.  Known as “The Fifth Businessman” (even though we now are six members strong, so technically he’d be “The Seventh Businessman”) Nato is back at The Biz to help prep for his upcoming FULL LENGTH COMEDY ALBUM RECORDING!  Nato speaks truth to power through the international language of love: stand-up comedy.  When not prepping for CD recordings, Nato has also been working on a documentary with and about his fellow pinko commies Laughter Against The Machine. This party just became a political party yall!

Party Dog Mike Drucker visits The Biz again to do a keg stand off our pony keg...of laughs!  A recent transplant from the Northwest, Mike has already made his nerd dominance felt throughout the Bay.  A writer for Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, McSweeny’s and Nintendo (that’s right, dorks)  Drucker also recently went head-to-head with Businessman Alex Koll during a Competitive Erotic Fan Fiction battle royale at Portland’s The Bridgetown Comedy Festival. How erotic will things get this Wednesday?  Probably not much at all!

To add to the party vibe, we will also have The DJ Real Vs. Joe Tobin Experience on-stage as our house band, some party snacks and many more surprises!

All of the regular Businessmen will be in the mix, except for Bucky, who is off pushing his poetry in Portland.  But not to worry, we’ve enlisted several holograms to take his place!  Come for the comedy, stay for the future technology!

As always, the party starts at 8pm, the party price is just $5 and party supplies are nearby at Taqueria Cancun and other hot party spots in the ‘hood.


Monday, April 23, 2012

The thorny problem of media pluralism

The term pluralism is regularly used in critiques of media and in arguments for public intervention. It is employed so loosely, however, that it allows varied interpretations to be attached and this makes it highly challenging to turn general support for the concept into specific policy. Much of the lack of clarity is the consequence of indefiniteness of the term and because it is used as a proxy for more involved concepts.

The term is derived from “plural”, an indistinct quantitative concept indicating the existence of more than a single thing and plurality itself merely indicates a state of being numerous. This alone allows the term plurality to be used in various ways when applied to media.

For some it means a plurality of media outlets. This is indicated by having multiple types of media and multiple units of each media and the existence of a range of print, broadcast, satellite, and Internet content providers can represent pluralism. For other observers pluralism means plurality in ownership, that is, a range of owners and different types of ownership. For others it is indicated by the existence of public service as well as private commercial firms so some provision is made by an organisation(s) without direct individual economic self-interest(s).

The amount of media, its ownership, and its operation are not in themselves the objects of concern about pluralism, however, and these usages are merely shorthand semantic devices that indicate a collection of political, economic, and cultural concepts and ideologies. Because that collection is not universally agreed, the term pluralism is disparately employed.

The term encompasses fundamental concepts in liberal democratic media ideology and neo-Marxist critiques of media. It incorporates ideas of the benefits of free flow of information, ideas and opinions and the value of a variety in artistic and cultural expression. It recognizes the amount of content that can be offered by any one provider is limited by temporal and spatial factors. It accepts that the abilities of individuals to obtain and attend to content are affected by monetary and temporal limitations. It recognizes that operation of media is accompanied by political and economic benefits such as access, privilege, influence, and power and that those can be used for personal advantage and interests.

Those who accept these concepts underlying the term pluralism differ widely about the proper means for its pursuit, however. They have divergent beliefs about the roles of the state and the market and differ widely about whether policy should promote beneficial outcomes through regulation or incentives and whether—and the extent to which—non-market provision of content is desirable.

The difficulty of achieving the ultimate objectives is further complicated by the fact that public policies promoting pluralism tend of focus on the overt evidences of plurality in media outlets, media ownership, and media operation. Although multiplicity of media outlets, ownership and operation increase the possibility of achieving the objectives of pluralism, they do not guarantee because they are not necessary and sufficient conditions for its existence. Thus ‘external pluralism’ is sometimes not enough. This has led many to advocate for ‘internal pluralism,’ meaning that within a single broadcasters or publisher as variety of content and perspectives are provided. The provision of internal pluralism is typically used to justify public service broadcasting and narrow internal pluralism is a typical critique of private media.

The contemporary world creates lower barriers to participation in communication by making production easier and shifting distribution away from technologies that limited the number of providers and content available—the fundamental rationale for concern about pluralism. In the digital media world, the fundamental challenge involving pluralism is not limitations on producing content, expressing divergent ideas and opinions, or access to distribution systems. The primary challenge is the ability to effectively reach audiences.

In this environment promoting pluralism must focuses on reducing control over what flows through new digital distribution systems so dominant owners of production and distribution systems are not able to marginalize alternative perspectives and make them difficult to locate. And the fundamental content and attention problem remains.

Although digital media provide many more opportunity to be heard, the issue today is not ‘share of voice’, but ‘share of ear’. We need to seek ways to promote knowledge about alternative content and to make it more readily accessible. Otherwise the concentration of where the audience goes—in terms of aggregators and sites—is every bit as damaging to pluralism as limitations on spectrum and concentration of ownership. This is especially true by the Internet service providers, content aggregators, search engines, and video on demand services that pursue their own interests through in-transparent practices and algorithms that skew the access to and distribution of information, even when it is ‘personalized’ by individuals.

Those who hold that pluralism is no longer an issue in the digital world argue that its underlying infrastructures are neutral. That technology may be neutral, but the systems necessary to make them function are under the control of companies with their own agendas and the abilities to limit or direct its use in ways that harm pluralism.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Getting Side Tracked....

This is what happens when...

these come in the mail:o)

End Tables

Good morning to you all! I am so happy to be able to sit upright in front of a computer right now:o) What a week we have had around here. E has a double ear infection and I have fluid on both of my ears..I tell ya, I feel a little more sympathy for my poor children when they end up with ear pain.
Today is the first day that I have felt like being up and moving around without needing to sit back down immediately for fear of passing out. 
So since I had a little bit of energy, I was able to finish these end tables I found at a yard sale last weekend.
 I didn't take any before pictures. But they were a cherry finish and in very good condition...just a few scrapes and bumps in a few areas..but REAL wood! I got a fantastic price on them. I had the paint on hand and all the other materials, so I didn't have to put too much money into them, thankfully.

 A little sanding, a little painting, a little more sanding, and some wax, and I'll have to say I am very pleased with the results. I wish that I had room for them in my living room, but I am a tad attached to the ones we are currently using:o)
 So, I have them for sale on a yard sale Facebook page...hopefully I can get a little out of them, so I can find more treasures this weekend;o)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Saw this on Facebook...

I just saw this on Facebook, and I died laughing...
...sorry if this isn't you type of humor;o)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Business April 18th 2012, "The Maximilian Affair" Edition

This week, The Business regulars are stuffing your enchiladas with baguettes as we welcome a bill of guests that would have Napoleon III plieing in his grave hard enough to knock off the sugar skulls.

Clara Bijl is visiting us from The City of Angels, but was born in The City of Light. PARIS, FRANCE. She was raised in the Alps, attended schools in Germany, Switzerland, and South Carolina; then one day, she moved to The City that Never Sleeps to begin a career in stand-up comedy. Performing all around the Big Apple and the rest of the country, she became a prolific writer of cutting, witty, internationally flavored comedy.

She will truffle your butter.

Frankie Quinones is a rising star to search for and catch. He is a founding member of For The People Comedy, is a collective of artists who share a common goal of producing colorful events fueled by positivity and laughter. Always maintaining a diverse lineup to represent San Francisco culture through high energy shows filled with humor and music. Frankie has also toured with some of the industry’s top headliners including the legendary Paul Rodriguez, and has performed for our troops overseas in Japan, Europe, and the Middle East.

He is also quite dapper. Muy rico suave.

This show is gonna feel like French kissing a churro. It’s gonna be like peeping on the Dos Equis guy with a French maid. It’s gonna make you wanna escarGO(silentT) see more live comedy!!! EIYIYI!!!! (I’m sorry)

Grab $5, your burrito and your beret and come join our fantastic guests and all the regulars! (except Alex, who we wish well in the wilds of the Northwest. If you are reading this in Tacoma, Washington- go see his shows this weekend at the Comedy Underground!)

Friday, April 13, 2012

Lamp Revamp

Yesterday I picked up a pair of lamps from our local Facebook yard sale page for $5. They were brass, and not all that attractive, but they had a good shape, and were still in good working condition.
Since I am not a huge fan of brass, I knew that spray painting would be the best treatment for this pair.
I had been looking for matching lamps to go on either side of my couch since I had done some furniture rearranging recently.

So this is what they started out as. Basic brass lamps.
 I used my Cricut to cut out a vinyl design that I thought would work well with the decor of the living room, and attached it to the lamp base. I applied 3 coats of Krylon satin Ivory.

  Brass doesn't accept spray paint all that well, so I distressed a few areas on the lamps to camouflage any thin spots.
 And in case you are wondering, the lamp shades were purchased at Walmart. They were just under $10 a piece.
I am so happy with how these lamps turned out, and I got 100% approval from the hubs:o)

Yard sale season is in full swing now, so I will be hitting a couple of sales tomorrow morning. If you venture out, I hope you have great luck in finding treasures!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

What I Am Pinning...

I have been completely clueless as to what to do with our bonus room for 2 and 1/2 years now. I think I am finally pulling some ideas together, and I wanted to show you some DIY built-ins out in blog-land that I am really digging.

Source: via Crystal on Pinterest

I also really like this little sofa table...

The hubs is sure to be excited when he hears what I want to do(comment dripping with sarcasm) Who knows, maybe I can put something together like this by myself;o)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A Tour of Our Backyard

Last year, I shared with you all these wonderful screens that the hubs put together. They were put there because we had absolutely no privacy in our backyard. We have really enjoyed having them. We knew that after those were put in, we would want to do something with all of that grass.
 Back in the fall, the hubs and a few other guys helped strip out all the grass in this area to get it ready to turn into flower beds.
And after a ton of work during the winter, this is what became of it.
 He designed everything back here.
 Eventually the arborvitae will grow together, and there will be complete privacy.
 This is our little fire pit area. I need some new cushions for these chairs. Waiting for them to go on sale:o) And we are still trying to figure out what to do with all of that brick that is stacked up against the house...any ideas? And no, we are not doing a fireplace...too expensive:o)
 The kids love running across this little path. It's their "track" to run "super fast" on;o)
 This little stone patio was a splurge, but we really love it.
 The fluff of a dog sunning on my rug that I got for Christmas.
 The hubs put this cute little fence up around my garden a couple of weeks ago. This was supposed to be a project for next year, but a certain ball of fluff decided he wanted to eat the broccoli that I had planted in the garden...5 minutes after I had planted it!!
The fence will be painted white when the fall rolls around. 
I plan on putting some really pretty cascading flowers in the planters when the threat of frost is over.
 Last weekend we put in some netting for the peas to run up. I hope they do well. I plan to can them.
 This is our next area of the backyard to tackle...just down right ugly if you ask me. And this is the first thing you see when you walk into the back yard. We have plans, though...Oh yes, we have plans:o)
We really love our backyard and I hoped you enjoyed the tour:o)
Happy Tuesday!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Mr. Sock Bunny

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter. Ours was a bit uneventful. Both of the kids had kind of a down weekend. E had a fever all day Saturday..have no idea why. And S.R. has had a bad cough and runny nose. We just hung out at the house all day while they tried to feel better. 
So while they were recovering, I needed something to do with my hands. 
I grabbed a pair of socks that were too big for S.R. and transformed them into a little bunny.

 An arm-less bunny, but he's still a bunny. E saw his little tail and said, "aw look, he's got a powder puff." Too cute;o)
I'm hoping to make a few more of these as soon as I find some more socks;o)...and they will have arms!!!
Happy Monday to you all!!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Words That Really Matter

John 20:29
Jesus said to him, "Thomas, because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.
I hope you all have a wonderful Easter!