Tuesday, April 24, 2007

VA Tech Observations

I wanted to wait awhile before I addressed the issue of the heinous VA Tech massacre. What a horribly tragic affair. So unnecessary. Is it really horrible of me to always think to myself in such cases, if he planned to take himself out anyway, why didn't he just start there? He would have saved all of us a lot of pain and tragedy.

However, it is pretty obvious why said villain - whose name I refuse to give more press - did what he did. I mean, how many madman stop after phase one of their killing spree to send perfectly posed psychotic propaganda to a television station? Geez! I have been pretty disgusted with NBC and the local newspapers for glorifying this guy and giving him EXACTLY what he wanted. Are they kidding me? Are they THAT stupid? I know ratings are important, particularly if your network lags behind, but sometimes you just have to say NO.

Things I Hope We've Learned

I'm sick and tired of the "Guns don't kill people. People kill people," speech. The NRA can shove that one up their... well, you can just imagine where. Guns DO kill people. Particularly semi-automatic weapons and hollow-point bullets. That's what they are friggin' manufactured for! When are we ever going to get out of this Wild, Wild West mentality?

Autism & Mental Illness need to be addressed with even 1/10th of the fervor with which we are willing to go and take over other countries. Taking care of the mentally ill wouldn't be nearly as draining on our economy as say, hmm.... a never-ending war.

Bullying must be taken seriously. There could never, ever, ever, ever, be an excuse for the unmitigated violence that was unleashed on VA Tech last Monday. However, so many of these stories have the same impetus in common. Bullying. This is a lesson that not only parents and teachers should pay attention to; but students. From kindergarten to the workplace, we all need to take note of the fact that bullying destroys lives. For years families lost their bullied children to suicide in silence and the world hardly took notice. Increasingly, the bullied are coming after their aggressors and taking their lives, and the lives of many others along with them. Schools should be a safe haven for our children. Not pure hell.

An increasing number of these incidents involve someone that has a history of Prozac or similar drugs. Are these drugs replacing depression with murderous psychosis? How many more incidents like this will we have before someone feels it is time to examine the connection more closely?


Samara Leigh

A Simple Plan - Simply Brilliant

I forgot how much I liked this movie. The story it tells of the unexpected greed that is hidden in us all and what it can do to even the most unsuspecting of us all is compelling and well told. Besides, I really am a Billy Bob Thornton fan.

Samara Leigh

Friday, April 20, 2007

Must See TV - 30 Rock & Raines

I've been meaning to blog about 30 Rock for a few weeks. Too bad it took Alec Baldwin's psychotic voicemail to his daughter leaked by his ex to remind me. Particularly since the last episode, which I just watched today, thanks to the ol' DVR, was showin' The Cleve some serious love.

Normally C-Town is the butt of a thousand jokes, including the ones about the burning river, which no-one will ever seem to let us forget (what you've never accidentally set anything on fire?) Anyhoo, Liz Lemon and her oh-so-perfect boyfriend Floyd, which she finally managed to snag after a series of hilarious and slightly psychotic episodes, take a trip "out West" to Cleveland. They feel like they are in some other happy universe where everything is grand. I loved the footage of some of my favorite Cleveland landmarks. Check out the Cleveland! Video. My favorite line is when Liz and Floyd step out of the BP building and she asks, "What smells so good?" His answer? "Cleveland." Take that all you C-Town Haters.

I love the show and have been a fan for a while. The only thing that drives me a little crazy is the Tracy Morgan character is often too far over the top. Even with that, he's been part of some really great plot lines: When Liz thought he was illiterate and he used it as a license to do even less work. The episode where fired his posse because he discovered that they were kissing up to him. The episode where he was searching for a religion before he got into some scandal, at the advice of his publicist. Then this week when he felt that the Black Crusaders - a secret group that meets in the skull of the Statue of Liberty four times of year and is headed by Bill Cosby and Oprah, its "chief majors." Apparently Gordon from Sesame Street is a member, too. Hilarious stuff.

Check out the highlight reel of the episode here or the full episode here and let me know what you think.

Another fantastic NBC show - Raines. Jeff Goldblum looks better than I ever remember him looking in his entire career. Smoldering hot and slightly off his rocker. Just the way I like them. Just kidding. Sort of...

I like the premise of the show. He's not seeing ghosts, rather his intense need to "know the victim" often results in his hallucinations about them, as if they are standing next to him and conversing with him. What I like most is that the show isn't gimmicky. It's a good solid show with great story lines and solid performances. I just wish that Malik Yoba was his living partner instead of being one of Raines' hallucinations. The brother always goes first, doesn't he? LOL. Catch last week's episode of Raines here.

Sidebar on the Alec Baldwin crazy voicemail: Dude, what were you thinking? You know Kim hates you. Why provide ammo? Secondly, we don't call our 11-year-olds selfish little pigs. Especially not to the top of our lungs. I've got a teenager so I've been the mother of an 11-year-old that actually was a self-centered little slob. Nevertheless, AB, we just don't do it. Capiche?

Peace out,

Samara Leigh

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Focus Space - An Online Women Writers Group

So the group has a name. Focus Space. A great recommendation from Revathi Siva Kumar. It fits perfectly with the vision for the group. Mucho sorry for the super late invites. Due to my last minuteness only a few of us made it, but boy did were we ever productive! We each shared our goals for the week and what we wanted to accomplish during this session. Despite ringing phones and saucy three-years, we were able to get quite alot done. My session mates even exceeded their goals for the sessions. Woohoo! Can't wait until next time. Check the group out online here.

Peace out,

Samara Leigh

Friday, April 13, 2007

Banishing Procrastination

This year I was determined to commit to my writing and not let anything sidetrack me. I started off strong, please believe me. I was typing my little fingers down to a nub, then I hit a wall. Fell off the wagon. Whatever. I didn't abandon writing altogether, but I started working several other projects and kind of left the book alone. It's bad when you've been away from your own novel so long, you feel like you'll need to re-read a few chapters just to get acquainted. Okay, maybe it's not that bad, but I did forget the names of a couple of side characters. Bad, bad writer.

I think it started when I got into a rough spot in the book and then I just sort of started working on other things, being too lazy to work out the dilemma. I've done that before, but usually within a week I was back at it. It has now been about six weeks since I've written a single new word. That's why it was time to take action...

I've been writing other articles, editorials and reviews, business articles, etc. so don't think I've been twiddling my thumbs. However, I really want to get the book finished. I send up a smoke signal in the Chick Lit Writer's Group on Yahoo! and got some really great responses. Hopefully the women writers group - name still to be determined - will be up and running next week.

If you're interested in joining the group, visit www.SamaraLeigh.com to register for the group.

Happy Friday!


Thursday, April 12, 2007

Comcast Says: Stopping Hogging the Internet!

It had to happen. Us damn internet users keep using the damn internet! Complete and utter folly on our part to think that was within our rights. After all, we are PAYING to use it. At least most of us are, I assume. The rest of you should be ashamed of yourselves!

What is the world coming to when you buy a service and then get penalized for actually using it? I thought Time Warner was insane in the membrane, but apparently, Comcast is a few utensils short of a full drawer, too. WTF?

Read this article chronicling how Comcast has been suspending high-usage customers' service FOR A YEAR and without warning. Best of all, they refused to tell you how much is too much. But, you'll know it when you hit it. That's when you'll wake up to a dead connection. I saw this website: www.WeWantChoiceOhio.com on TV and got all up and arms. I believe I launched some sort of battle cry and started pumping my fist in the air. My husband and son suggested I take some sort of medication, or at the very least, some chamomile tea. But doggone it, this is ridiculous. What's next, I'll be penalized for parking in my garage?

Peace and continuous cable connections to you and yours,


Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Get Real Estate

After visiting several possible rental units over the past two weekends I am wondering... what the hell is wrong with these people? Crumbling steps, entrance halls with chunks of missing plaster, carpet that looks like a three ring circus performed there for the past twelve months, backward cabinet doors, appliances that are older than I am and that have not been cleaned since the Reagan years... it's pathetic.

Note to the world: The gloves are off. I tried to be polite through those first few monstrosities, though clearly the property owners had no regards for their current or future tenants. However, life is too short. I won't be rude, but I am calling a spade a spade. I'm far too busy to waste my time touring rental properties that are a step above an alleyway.

We are hesitant to purchase again because, let's face it, the real estate market here in Ohio is not the best. We love the Erie Shores, but at the same time we are really ready to relocate. After all, we've been here all of our lives. It is time for a change. Plus, there is major discord going on at GQ Jones' (hubby's) place of work. We just know that if we buy property he'll get transferred somewhere else and we'll be stuck trying to unload our house in a market with a gazillion others already for sale.

Still not sure what we are going to do, but I do know that I won't be moving into any of the dumps that I've seen recently.


Samara Leigh