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After a couple of days of late nights at work, I finally got home at a reasonable hour and decided not to spend the time watching the news. Mostly because it reminds me that when I’m 65, my kids will ask me where I was when Obama was inaugurated, and I will tell them, “On the toilet, because I really had to finish drafting those tax certification forms, and once I was done, I couldn’t wait. Shouldn’t have put all those raisins in my oatmeal.”

Here’s what I’ve learned watching basketball and mildly surfing the internet:

1. Paul Blart: Mall Cop is the number one movie in America. I don’t regard that as some sign of the apocalypse or anything, I actually thought it didn’t look bad…as a rental. Look America, I know it was cold out, but do you think Kevin James is really an A-list movie star? Because that’s what you just made him.

2. I’ve seen none of the Oscar-nominated movies. Looks like I have to get on that if I am going to anger moviegoers with contrarian blog postings. I still get the occasionally shitty email for my reaction to “There Will Be Blood.” Although I’ll say this right now: No “Benjamin Button”. I saw “Meet Joe Black” in the theater many moons ago, and Brad Pitt, “three hour movie”, and me will never go together again.

3. If you like basketball, and you think Charles Barkley can’t be replaced, check out the comedy stylings of Chris Webber and Gary Payton on TNT while they sub for him.  Here’s a look at their little-seen NBA TV work:

We may have just found the new Wayans Brothers.

4. Jim Beam has a series of ads that are kind of jaw-droppingly sexist, basically, they represent the worst of male fantasies and thoughts, and proudly associates Jim Beam with them. In the one I saw tonight, a scantily clad, hot woman speaks of how she likes slightly fat men with back hair who go to strip clubs. It then says “the girlfriend”, and Jim Beam is “the bourbon”. Yeah, okay. You gotta be drinking a bottle of Jim Beam to think that’s going to happen. When I think sexy girls, I think Jim Beam, that’s what they drink. Yeah, sure.

What’s even worse is they’re trying to mask it as “ironic” by having a video contest where you make fun of these plodding, pathetic, and obvious ads.  So you can make fun of how impossibly sexist they are. Because you know it’s not true, right? Way not to man up, Jim Beam.

So, I went home this weekend and my dad asked me if I was doing anything to help Barack Obama.

“I’m not a Democrat,” I reminded my dad.

My mother quietly started making fun of him in the kitchen. “Here he goes again. Obama’s his guy. Won’t stop talking about him.” I didn’t think my mother was a Hillary supporter, but she sounded less than convinced. Probably because after 34 years of marriage, if my dad’s for it, she’s probably against it.

So what does this mean to you, the voters? I don’t know. But I have to admit, I’ve never seen my dad this excited about a presidential candidate. Ever. I mean, my dad never stopped making fun of Jesse Jackson, so it’s not about skin color with him.

(Sample rant: “What has Jesse Jackson ever run? I mean, run for mayor of Chicago first or something! Why should he be President? Because he’s a preacher?”)

Why am I throwing this out there, you ask?

Well, my dad’s endorsement is just about as pointless as all the other noise I’ve been hearing for the last month or so as the Democratic Party Immolation Festival paves the way for the McCain Administration.

Issues? Remember those? Yeah, the campaign was kind of boring back then when that was the focus. It’s much better now that the focus is now on to nitpick both sides, looking for those “gotcha” moments, embarrassing photos, quotes from duplicitous surrogates and cronies going “sorry, was that offensive?”, relentless parsing of statements, irrational and stupid name-calling from supporters on both sides, and all around wasting everyone time by inflaming passions and relegating thought to the back burner.

And that’s why Well Whiskey Friday Sr.’s endorsement matters so much. He’s as cynical and hardened as any voter, waiting for something to rouse him out of his (occasional) gout-induced slumber. Barack Obama has done just that. My dad looks skeptically at any black person who runs for office, maybe more so than your average white guy. (Let’s just say there was many an expletive thrown David Dinkins’ way.) So you know Barack’s trustworthy.

So now I’ve added my two cents of nonsense into this. I feel like I am now an active participant.

As for Mama Well Whiskey, I suspects she secretly likes McCain’s sarcasm and short temper. Forget the first black person, or the first woman in the White House. I think she’s truly looking for one of her own to finally get in the White House. Sarcastic cranks of the world, unite!

Yes, it’s time for this year’s annual Black History Month post, and talk about your black history! It’s finally time for me to take the idea of people electing a black president seriously.

Yeah, I’ll admit despite the fact that I have lots of white friends who are not racist, not ignorant, and not closed-minded, I thought most of them just got kicked out of where they came from for such ideas and moved to New York.  (Kidding!) Despite evidence to the contrary, I just didn’t think it was possible. I don’t know why, I guess you never want to trust “the white man” 100 percent. Unfortunately, centuries of disappointment will always make you leery of complete and total optimism when you’re black, and while I am generally not as pessimistic and as guarded as many African-Americans when it comes to race (generally hardly at all), this was the one area where I was just like, there’s no way this is happening!

And as long as there are “superdelegates” out there, I guess it still could happen. Sort of. But it wouldn’t be because of racism, it would be a simple coup by party bigwigs pledged to Hillary Clinton, which would leave many Obama supporters bitter and disappointed, and that might lead to who knows what come the fall.

I think Democrats (this is purely outsider observation, I am an independent) have been waiting for their Ronald Reagan. After, really, fourteen years or so in the wilderness as the minority party, they sense that their moment is now and a charismatic man bringing hope to lead them back is fast becoming appealing. I’m amazed how much my friends who support Obama really seem to believe in him. I am a bit older than most of these people, and at this point, I’m just happy if the president isn’t screwing up. But there’s something about wanting to believe in a leader, and Obama’s got that quality. Clinton’s also got that quality–unfortunately it belongs to Bill, and he’s ineligible.

So, while I admit to still being slightly unsure, the fact is, come November, we could have a black president. And that in itself is pretty historic. I’m not sold on him yet personally, but I’ll make that decision if he wins the primary (it’s up to you Dems to decide who you want, it’s not my business, for the most part). In the meantime, what was left of my cynicism seems to have dissipated a little bit more, which is always a good thing.

Okay, that was the good of Black History Month. Later, the bad: Flavor of Love 3.