Cry me a freaking river

20 02 2010

Obviously, plenty could be said about golfer Tiger Woods’ live press release where he ‘fessed up about his extra-marital affairs, apologized to just about everyone on the planet, and basically told the world to stay out of his personal business.
I’m fine with that. All I want is to see him get back on the golf course and dominate like he used to.
What’s really gotten under my fingernails is that one of his alleged mistresses is continuing to be an attention whore by acting like she’s some sort of victim in all of this.
I’m talking about Veronica Siwik-Daniels, a former porn star known as Joslyn James who hails from a little town five minutes from me called Mayfield, N.Y.
Shortly after Woods’ long-awaited mea culpa, Siwik-Daniels had her own press conference, saying she’s owed a personal apology from Tiger.

It’s absolutely pathetic, on so many levels.
For starters, Siwik-Daniels (who all of a sudden is using her real name after allowing her porn star name and porn star image to be used for months after the Woods’ scandal unfolds) is obviously trying to stay in the spotlight while you rarely hear from any of the golfer’s other former mistresses.
Second, we are not talking about someone who has a great track record. Her career in porn aside, we are talking about someone who claims she got pregnant twice by Woods but never told him and also owes thousands of dollars in back child support payments.
We’re also talking about someone who knowingly engaged in an affair with a married man and BRAGGED about it, including to members of her own family.
So do the math.
A stupid little girl from a hick town builds a career by having sex with strange men on camera for money; prostitutes do the same thing, only the camera will probably cost you extra. She hooks up with a worldwide celebrity worth millions, a celebrity she had to know was married unless she was spending too much time under a rock (or something else that rhymes with rock).
And instead of laying low like many of this worldwide celebrity’s mistresses, she continues to run her mouth and even holds her own media event that’s just as staged as her former lover’s event.
And she claims all she wants is a face to face apology? I even doubt people in Mayfield will believe that.
Look, there’s no denying that Tiger Woods’ behavior was reprehensible, but let’s face it, Woods was just as much a notch on these women’s bedposts as they were on his. If he wasn’t Tiger Woods, most, if not all, of these women probably wouldn’t have given him the time of day.
Woods is obviously scrambling to right the ship, but it’s a ship none of us has any right to be sailing on because it’s a private cruise. He screwed up big time, got caught, admitted he was wrong and that he let a lot of people down.
Now that he’s done that, all I want to see is him get back on the golf course and dominate. That’s why I, and millions of other people, have watched him over the years.
But as far as Siwik-Daniels, or Joslyn James, goes, in the words of fictional motivational speaker Matt Foley, he doesn’t owe you JACK SQUAT because you knew exactly what you were getting into.


Save us …

11 01 2010

What does this countdown mean?
Hint: Check the banner. It was “Five” yesterday, now it’s “four.”

Is Ward really hard on the Beaver?

16 11 2009


It’s hard to for me to not comment on local affairs when stories like this, written by Recorder superstar reporter Jessica Maher, are begging for further commentary.
One theme brought out in the story is whether Amsterdam should continue to have wards, or elect representatives on an “at-large” basis. I have to agree with that sentiment.
This year, all Common Council races were contested. Unfortunately, many races saw candidates who would be an asset to Amsterdam, but they couldn’t win because of the ward system
By way of example, here’s what I thought of the candidates, from strongest to weakest:
1. Julie Pierce
2. Gina DeRossi
3. Kevin Phelps
4. Joe Isabel
5. Chad Ahr
6. Robert Martin
7. William Wills
8. Robin Raciborski
9. Diane Hatzenbuhler
10. Ronald Wierzbicki
11. Richard Leggiero
12. Mark Capone
If the city voted on the candidates based on the order I have listed, the 1st and 2nd Wards would have the majority representation on the council. However, if you added two at-large positions, there would be another 3rd Ward representative and someone from the 4th Ward.
The 5th Ward, as it stands, would have no direct representation, but the problem there is while Leggiero is fantastic at addressing the so-called “hyper-local” needs of his constituency, I have to agree that the 5th Ward is mostly a South Side district.
So why get rid of the ward system? Easy.
Pierce and DeRossi were, in my opinion, head and shoulders over every candidate for the council. Phelps lives in “the suck” of Amsterdam, but his experiences in the roughest neighborhoods of the city give him the know-how when it comes to dealing with the city’s toughest problems. There’s no question that Isabel, who could show more leadership on the council, really cares about the community and wants it to do well.
I was also impressed by Ahr, who, while being a salesman, has some “outside the box” ideas that could help this community.
Here’s the kicker. Amsterdam lost out on having guys like Kevin Phelps and Chad Ahr serving on the council because they ran in wards that featured stronger candidates.
Meanwhile, in the 4th and 5th wards, voters there were stuck with weaker candidates because they had no choice.
I understand the argument against doing away with wards because it leads to the possibility of one section of a community controlling the rest. In Kinston, N.C., where I worked before I came back home, all city council seats are “at-large,” but three council members are literally neighbors and all vote in the same voting precinct.
However, as shown in the last election, Amsterdam lost out on having some solid government representation because of its antiquated ward system.

The cowardice of anonymity

15 11 2009


It comes as no surprise to read the blatant hypocrisy and “who, me?” stance taken by Amsterdam blogger Flippin’ Amsterdam as he was responding to this piece written by Recorder columnist Michael Lazarou.
The columnist has a legitmate beef since there’s a poster on Flippin’s site who posts under a name that’s eerily close but not quite spelled like the columnist he’s obviously spoofing. Unfortunately, it’s led some people to believe that the poster on this blog is acutally the person who writes a bi-weekly column for the Recorder.
And while it’s not surprising to see that Flippin’ will try to explain away allowing the poster the make comments under the fake name, it does, once again, raise the issue about anonymous blogging versus people actually identifying themselves.
A major negative about blogging and posting comments is that the Internet allows people to remain relatively anonymous, which in turn gives them license to post whatever they want, and about whoever they want, without having to put their names behind their statements.
I’ve always held the belief that anyone who truly believes in what they say, and has the courage to be held accountable for what they say, will be willing to put their name behind their posts.
Contrary to some beliefs, who is saying something is nearly as important as what they say, because nearly every pronogsticator has a specific reason, or “agenda,” behind what they are saying. Those who hide behind screen names and Net handles are little more than snipers or people who jump into bar fights, punch someone in the back and then run away.
I will agree with Flippin’ on this level: I do believe the same standard should be applied across the board. Callers to radio talk shows should be identified, along with those who post on blogs (and host blogs, for that matter).
But to criticize people who aren’t afraid to identify themselves for criticizing people who use fake identities, especially when hiding behind a false identity, is hypocrisy at its worst.

Want to see why so many people think our area is full of fruitcakes?

9 11 2009


In any community, there are people who are just flat-out insane who would be better off feeding bread crumbs to ducks and capturing armadillos in order to use their shells against government brain-waves.
No more is this evident than comments you see on local blogs.
The reason? Blog hosts can choose to remain anonymous. Their posters can remain anonymous. Therefore, it gives them a license to spew whatever verbal garbage that comes out of their mouths, without worrying about being accountable for their statements.
A perfect example of this is a local blog called Flippin’ Amsterdam. It’s a site where the host refuses to disclose his identity (even thought most people around here know who you are). The host also allows users to use fake names, and in some cases, allows people to use handles that may slander real people.
Hiding behind a wall of anonymity allows people to grow muscles they wouldn’t have if they put their actual name out into the public. My thought has always been that if you truly believe in what you’re saying, then you shouldn’t be afraid to put your name behind it.
If you want a great example of what I’m arguing, check out this thread at Flippin Amsterdam. Notice that the people at least using their real first names are making serious arguments for their positions, while those who are hiding behind fake names are the ones making vicious attakcs.

In the spirit of fairness, the conversation on this thread has since moved on to actual issues and civil discourse. Which, as Martha Stewart says, is a good thing.