Monday, March 30, 2009

50th Post

Yay, my first milestone, and it only took me three years to get here! It started after reading my friend Barney's blog and realizing that I too like to share my thoughts and adventures with anyone willing to listen/read. I also was in need of something productive to do with my time, as I was less than a year out of college and the weekdays certainly were not as exciting as they used to be, boredom started to set in. And even though I knew only several friends would make up the core of my readership, I find the whole idea of saying what is on your mind to be somewhat therapeutic and thus well worth it.

I remember it took me hours to think of a name, I wanted it to be clever and I am a bit of a perfectionist, so it had to be, well, perfect. As a pretty big fan of alliteration, I settled on The Bantering Butteris. I still like it to this day, though I wish I would perhaps thought of something that didn't involve my last name, as I now appear up in google searches, and I guess not everyone needs to know about my drinking adventures or my political philosophy, but, oh well.

I have certainly ignored posting to the blog many times, hence the sarcasm at the start of this. Truth is, I am not "married to it, and when things get busy or hectic in my life, then it is slips, and I'll be honest, sometimes I get lazy. Lately though I have picked up steam, and plan on continuing this momentum....hopefully I'll be having the 100th posting much quicker than 3 years time!

And now, so this post isn't entirely about nothing, I'll leave you with a couple little nuggets:

Sunday, March 29, 2009

#5. My Collegiate Life - Reality Check

There are certain days we will always remember. Be them good days, be them bad. Good days, such as a wedding day or a graduation day, are always cherished and reminiscent stories are always shared. Bad days, we always remember where we were and what we were doing when the bad news broke. We look back on bad days as ways we can change our lives to make us better people. What happens though when your naive outlook on the world is suddenly destroyed? The day in which I'm referring is September 11, 2001. Unlike, most of my peers in Whitewater, this day hits me a little harder, the reason a little different than one might think.

You ever get a phone call you won’t ever forget? A phone call where everything just sounds so, unreal, the words you hear are comprehended but your mind doesn’t make sense of anything. I woke up for my Econ class around 8:00. It was the 2nd week and things already seemed routine, another sunshiny day. Shortly after I awoke, as I was getting ready, I get a call from my dad. He lets me know that one of my classmate’s from high school was in a car accident on his way to work with his dad. My classmate, Clint, didn’t survive, his dad was in pretty serious condition. Now Clint, I considered a friend. We in no ways were best friends, but we shared both good times and rough times in the past, and we always liked to share a laugh at those times over a few brews.

I was obviously rattled by this news. I was 18 years old and had a feeling of invincibility about me at all times. I had experienced death, but not this young, this just wasn’t right. Obviously, not too much had been known at that point in time, so my dad could only answer so many questions. Things couldn’t get much worse on this day.

After we talked about Clint’s accident for about 5-10 minutes, my dad asked if I had the TV on. I did not as I had just woken up a little bit before and rarely turned the TV on in the morning anyways. He suggested I turn it on and never really explained. We got off the phone and I flipped the TV on. What the hell!

The images I just saw for the first time were the images that all Americans alive will always remember for the rest of their lives. By the time I turned on the TV, both of the World Trade Centers were engulfed in flames and it was known that two aircraft had flown into them in an obvious act of terror. We all know how the story goes, but my mind already in a haze over the news of Clint was just racing every which way.

The dorms were starting to stir now with people; most I don’t think realized what was happening yet. I call a few people who were out in the hallways to come in and watch this as I knew it was something of monumental importance. We were just watching these burning towers trying to make sense of what was happening, and it was obvious CNN was trying to make sense of things as well, desperate for information to report to the obviously stunned public. Then the news broke that The Pentagon had a large explosion, and that it was yet another commercial airliner. Jesus Christ, there is a full scale attack against us!

I still had class to get to. It was only the 2nd week of classes and I had not yet learned that class is quite optional, so I continue getting ready with an eye on the TV, and then a sight I was never expecting happened, one of the tower’s just completely collapsed! I paused for a few minutes in shock over what I just saw, but then I had to get going.

I don’t remember walking to class, as I am sure I had too much information to process. Thoughts over what was going to be hit next? When I return from class, is there going to be a Washington D.C. left? Are we going to be going into war? I do remember my class though. You can take a guess what we talked about the entire time. When the professor brought it up right away, not everyone had heard the news yet. We spent the entire time theorizing the who’s and the why’s. Being an economic class, we talked about how this could affect the economy. I was sort of upset that a) he didn’t let us go early b) there was no TV to watch the developing story unfold. When I got back to the dorm, the announcement was made that all classes were cancelled for the rest of the day. Little good that did me, I was done with mine.

When I did get back to the dorm, I made a few phone calls to some friends about Clint. I spoke with my friend Alicia, who was going to school in Madison, for a while about everything. She had not heard the news about Clint yet and was shocked to hear that on top of everything else that was happening. I sort of felt bad breaking that news to her, but hell, I needed someone to talk to and Alicia was always there for me in the past. The rest of the day was just spent watching TV with everyone. We were all in shock.

I fully believe that the events of that day helped to humble me as a person. Only being 18, I never completely lost that feeling of invincibility, but I did learn that you can’t take life for granted, and that you should live your life to the fullest. This is a philosophy that I certainly utilized throughout school and maintain still to this day.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Rebuttal

In response to my last blog, my friend Jonny has created a new blog with his words of rebuttal. I will agree that my statement about the 3rd world country was a little extreme, I had read sometime that a particular 3rd world country has more broadband access than the US does, I then spun that into something that flowed, haha, I am as bad as the politicians. Anyways, read, support....check back here then for my response

Later folks. Up next, chapter 2 of my college story!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Quick Political Rant

Seems like every day when I go to check the latest in news on the internet, I always see a new Republican agreeing that he/she wishing that our President will fail, what the hell? It started when the pill-popping hypocrite said it on air causing an immediate firestorm (damn liberal media, unfairly attacking poor defenseless Rush NotSlimbaugh). Now, the message has been transformed a little bit with major GOP heads agreeing with Rush. ---They have to agree, every time one of them said something bad against him, winning my personal praise, but they immediately backed down and said they were taken out of context....oh my god, they are F'ing scared of a radio talk show host!---Now the message is everyone is hoping President Obama's policies fail, a much more subtle approach at the Red/Blue differences in policy, and not a perceived attack at the President himself.

While the message has been, toned down, I still wonder, why? How can you want him to fail? I would guess if you asked any member of Congress, would you want every American to have quality affordable health care...their answer is yes. Now, the difference of course is the money it takes to acheive this goal of universally affordable health care, that part I can get. I have no problem with the GOP and anyone else opposed to the spending that will ensue, but, if it passes.....wouldn't you want to be proven wrong? Wouldn't you want to say, wow, I'll be damned, I thought it would bankrupt us, it didn't, and every American has quality affordable health care and wow, it might just save us a ton of cash in the long run as the gov't doesn't need to deal with costs associated with sick individuals. ---This is all hypothetical people, don't jump on me.

Wouldn't you want to say, I didn't believe in investing so much into the sciences, but I'll be damned, air quality is at an all time high, less kids are getting asthma, less money is needed in the long run once again. Or, I'll be damned, they cured Parkinson's disease, or MS.....or, wow, our kids are once again the cream of the crop in the world, making new inventions to help fuel brand new industries within the country.

Once again, all hypothetical, and if you don't believe the gov't should front the money and they still do, wouldn't you hope it at least works?

Let's jump back, 8 years....I was unhappy with the election of Bush over Gore, I couldn't vote, but was really not happy with what took place. However, at that point in time, I said, well, it is what it is, I wish him all the best to help this country. Even in 2003, I was up in the air on what should be done in Iraq, we obviously went through with the attack, I hoped for the best. I hoped we could topple the regime quickly, and that a peaceful nation would emerge. I think anyone who voted against the war, hoped for the best outcome and would've liked to be proven wrong.

Also, I am sick of the assaults conservatives will launch if you say anything to go against their opinion. They will send you links, and stories, and videos to prove their point. They will say that you need to read more, say you should quit watching and paying attention to what the mainstream(liberal) media tell you, I've been told to quit watching The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. Well, you know what, I can find links, articles, videos, books to argue my points, but Conservatives will just dismiss them as not valid.....the only true opinion is their opinion. it is thoughts like this, that help keep me to the left of the spectrum ( I fully consider myself a moderate). I can't stand that people are too damn stubborn to accept others ideas. Also, I do not take my news from fake news shows, who admit they are fake, and if you must know, I get my news from reading different online sites (newspaper & TV sites) as well as the local news. I just want to tell them they need to quit watching Hannity or Coulter, or listening to Limbaugh. Those clowns will cut a segment every bit as much as Jon Stewart does, to make things better for the context they want to spin and then pass it off as real news. They slander, they whine when things don't go their way.....Glenn Beck cries that he just hates to see his country like this, because he loves it so damn much. if you love it so damn much, do something to fix it....right or wrong, that is at least what YOUR president is trying to do. And to be fair, MSNBC does the same damn thing, and it is annoying! You should also all know, I don't read or look at anything you ever send me.

Remember the old addage, it takes money to make money. We are sitting with an infrastructure that was built in the early to mid 1900s.....our infrastructure has been compared to a 3rd world country.....our education system is not putting out performance, our health care system is a complicated, stupid mess of a system. People scoff at the money it would take to put broadband internet access available to every citizen. The internet is today's interstate system! No one seems to think that Eisenhower's insterstate system is a bad idea, at least not today. And at least he is trying to invest money in OUR COUNTRY, not other countries *cough*Iraq*cough*...let's not be so forgetfull Republicans.

Do I think Obama is trying to do too much, too quick, yes, I really do. At least, in my eyes, he is actually trying to fix things, not putting a band-aid over a severed arm. I want him to succeed, if he doesn't, we can try to start anew in 4 years. Too many people seem to think, that because I voted for him, that he is 'my boy'. He is not 'My Boy', so sorry that you decided you had to stick with your idiot of a President Bush and called him 'yours', no one said you had to. If Obama does something wrong, I hope he is held accountable, I am not going to go dig up arguments on why things are actually good and correct. I do though, want him to succeed, I want our country to be the prosperous force it was once again, and it is going to be a long, long road...but the sooner we invest in our country, while expensive, the sooner we can start to see payout and the expenses become will be well worth it....hopefully.

We have no idea how things will play out, we can all take our best guesses, but until the time comes and goes.....Please support our President!

I am not going back to proofread this, and I probably might disagree with what I wrote today in a month's time, but as of today, this is how I feel...peace out homies and homiettes!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Random Thoughts #2

Hopefully this one doesn't take a year to post! (3/24/09 - not quite a year has passed, but there is little info covered...sort of a race based blog apparently, interesting [the Maine trip was my last at Generac - actually ended up in Norfolk, VA] Anyways, I'll post it to get it out and out of my way)


As I walk out my hotel room in Farmington Hills, MI, I spot a one of the maids and to my bewilderment, she was white. Now, this isn't going where you think I might be going, quite the opposite in fact. I decided there was no way I was letting her clean my room because if I know white people, and I think I would, it is that they can be lazy and take shortcuts. Or perhaps that is just myself. I then pray that it was the other lady (I think she is African) who cleaned my room prior to me staying as I would feel it to be much cleaner.


So, I was in Rockland, ME today. And for those of you not familiar with the state, Rockland is in the middle of nowhere Maine. And to be fair, everything in Maine is in the middle of nowhere, including Portland! Anyways, to the point. I am sitting outside of a Home Depot when I see a mother and son walking together. Well, this sounds pretty normal, but you should see what this gangbangin' 8 year old was decked out in. In a town where I am pretty sure the African-American presence is 0%-2%....(2% being very high guesstimate), this kid has baggy pants sagging below his waist, gigantic shirt, a doo-rag with a ghetto-patterned hat over that and tilted to the side. Now if that wasn't good enough, he had just a ridiculous pair of 'stunna shades'. Each lens covered 1/2 his yes, his entire face appeared to be covered by sunglasses. PEOPLE, I AM IN MAINE. This was extremely amusing to me, especially because I wonder if this kid has even seen someone of a different race (other than native)? I also think of Office Space, where Michael Bolton turns the rap music way down when he sees a black person, then jams out when he passes by.....I see this kid being the same way, and that tickles me.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

JJO's .10k Walk/Run

So earlier this week during an e-mail conversation with Barney, I was brought to light of an event that was to take place on Saturday. The rock station out of Madison, and one of my all time favorite stations to boot, 94.1 WJJO was having their annual .10k walk/run to celebrate St. Patty's day.

Yes, you are reading that right, .10k, which apparently is the distance between Brother's Bar & State Street Brats. Yes, it is an organized, yet somewhat chaotic, barhop. I first heard of this event when it first started several years ago over the radio, but paid little attention to it as I had my own St. Patty's Day to celebrate in Whitewater, and nothing could top that I figured. Well, Bernard had participated in that first event, and told me the glorious details upon his arrival back to Whitewater from the big race. He had a racing number, a T-Shirt, and it struck me at that point, that it was a really neat idea.

The Route

Anyways, back to last week's conversation. Bernard kindly sent me a link to the event's website so I could further investigate and decide if it was something I would like to participate in. In a rush decision, I immediately say that I am in. The next day I have a bit of 'Buyer's Remorse' about my snap decision. I was planning on taking off this weekend from drinking, and looking forward to not spending any cash. I have a lot of expenses that will be occurring in the next month, and an all day drunk could not be easy on the wallet. I wrote Barney back saying that I was in turmoil over my decision, then shortly after the Badgers lost in the Big Ten Tourney I e-mailed saying that my answer was going to have to be a no. He understood, but promised I would spend little money as he was planning on selling T-Shirts that he had made, and those profits would specifically be for the purchase of drinks for all members of his party.

That night, I thought about what I was doing. I always complain that I want to do something 'different', and out of the ordinary....and here I was with the opportunity and was passing it up. I then make the decision at that point that if a party develops that night, I don't go, if not I stay home Friday night and early Saturday morning depart for the Mad City. The party for Friday night fell through, so I inform Bernard that I am in fact in. Trumpets sounded, choirs sung, Dustin made a decision.

The Big Day
My alarm sounds at 7 am, not an ideal wake up time for a Saturday, but having taken the night off, I was still recharged and ready to go. I grabbed my drinking gloves (batting gloves), my safety glasses, and my green tie in homage to my last Whitewater St. Patty's celebration and leave for Madison shortly after 8 am. I jam out, listen to some of my Pat McCurdy songs on my iPod to gear up for partying and Irishness. I park my car in the garage downtown, and met up with Barney. I threw my shirt on, and we started towards Brothers, by walking the race course backwards, to get a feel for it. We were determined to be the winners.

Ugh, Brother's, possibly one of the worst bar franchises in history. That bar (all locations) seem to attract the douchiest of the douches (I heard one guy took his pants off in the Milwaukee location), and the workers themselves often are jackasses as well. I have been a part of/witnessed many a arguments with bouncers/bartenders. I always get the feeling that Brother's establishments consider themselves to be a higher class than they actually are. Not to mention the Madison location is a great place to go if you want to have no place to move or breath. The design of the bar is stupid.

We try to go upstairs to get our race number, but were denied access because we were not pre-registered and they sold out. So, we get our mugs, order up some drinks and find a corner to stand in while we slowly inibreated ourselves. I saw some old friends, Kevin and Luke, from Highland and briefly said hello. An old AFS buddy, Whitney was also there and working as a Miller girl. So, she updates our attire with the necessary flashing promotional items and Leprochaun ears. The ears had to go though, as I basically have no earlobes and they kept slipping off. I later come up with the idea that they were not checking people if they were registered, they just asked. So Bernard went and sure enough got up and got himself a number, and kindly gave it to me. I was officially racer #858. The number had good flow, so I was pleased.

Then at 10:00, the Golden Keg was tapped after some dude dressed as a leprochaun and Greg Bear from the Jonny and Greg morning show did some Irish accents and played some Irish music, it really carried on for far too long. Speaking of Johnny and Greg Morning Show, Johnny Danger officially shows what many years of partying can do to a body, I took note. Oh, so, the keg was tapped, and I shouted Happy Oktoberfest (since they stole the golden keg idea).

Tapping of the Golden Keg

11:00 am - Everyone is asked to go outside to a parking lot for the start of the race. We finish our drinks and proceed. After some brief discussion on strategy, we were off like two fat drunk guys running .1 kilometers. Barney had the brilliant idea to record the race, I also decided I too was going to take video, and like a drunk Blair Witch Project we made film history. After turning the corner, I realized that I was behind, and I was not going to stand for that, so I reach in the tank and kicked it up a notch passing Bernard for the win, over him at least.

Please watch the race at the BDogSchneeby Times, click this link, TRUST ME

So, I wanted to throw up after that experience. It was exhausting, and we raced at a pretty good clip for being drunk out of shape dudes. But, by time I got to the door, I was settled down and good to go again. There was a problem though, I did not hit record on my phone, I had no personal footage of the race. This was traumatic to me, as I was sure I had some good one liners in there. This would be a topic that would come up many times throughout the day.

Being a wonderfully beautiful day, the outside patio was prepped for bargoers, and we make our way outside to enjoy the day. I had this weird feeling though. My face, felt warm, like, the light from the sun was making me feel warm. I liked it, seems like a feeling I felt before, last October was probably the last occurence of this event. So, as I mentioned, sun, I needed my shades. I go to the parking garage which was next door and little did I know a new adventure was about to occur, I got lost, in the parking garage.

Back to the bar with my shades that came from Australia, I was ready for some serious daydrunk. T-Shirt sales, slow at first, picked up when the executive decision was made to lower the price to $5. This was sort of fun, and helped us meet and talk with a lot of people. Met some girls who went to Whitewater, we try to do some sort of connection to relate with, but had nothing. I was saddened to hear though the bad news from one of the girl's letting me know that the Blue House was resided, and is now a gray color.

So, there is a cow statue, why wouldn't I go sit on it for a while?

That's me taking the bull by the horns....its a metaphor. But that really happened

Ok, food needs to happen. We head down State St. to eat at my latest obsession, Buffalo Wild Wings. Apparently I saw an amazing photo opportunity.

Then, we were back off to Middleton, for some rest. I reawoke around 7:30, and we went back downtown to recover my vehicle, and I headed home for new adventure. I went from an amazing city in Madison with smoke free bars and many young a dump of a city in West Allis at a bar that possibly gave me lung cancer, and shared my evening with many local townies. Both were fun, but the latter was back to the normalcy.

I'll be back in 2010, Fo' Sho'