B. John

Records and Content Management consultant who enjoys good stories and good discussion. I have a great deal of interest in politics, religion, technology, gadgets, food and movies, but I enjoy most any topic. I grew up in Kings Mountain, a small N.C. town, graduated from Appalachian State University and have lived in Atlanta, Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Dayton and Tampa since then.

Weekly Twitter Digest

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Jun 102017

Christian Author Says Liberals Hate 100 Things-I Respond to Each

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Jun 082017
This entry is part of 2 in the series Say It To My Face

I know the headline comes as a surprise to you, but Right Wing Watch has called attention to an article by some Christian author who, on Charisma News, posted a list of 100 things we Liberals hate about America. I had to read the list, and, of course, since it’s me, I have to comment on it. So let’s just roll right through this list.

This is from Michael Snyder’s article. Of course this paragraph alone merits a response by itself (heck, I could probably write a post about each of his 100 things, but I don’t know if I’ll get that ambitious), but I’ll leave that for a later post. Anyway, here’s what Snyder thinks:

If we want to make America great again, we need to embrace the things that made us great in the first place. Unfortunately, the left tends to hate most of those things. In fact, many leftists will actually tell you that America was never great. These “progressives” want our nation to be fundamentally “transformed” into an entirely different place than our forefathers intended, and they plan to use big government as the tool to conduct that “transformation”.

So, for all your liberals out there…here’s what it turns out, according to Michael Snyder, you hate: Continue reading »

Jun 032017
Courtesy Nissan

Courtesy Nissan of Tampa

I’ve posted before about the unusually high number of issues I’ve had with my supposedly New 2016 Nissan Rogue. Since purchasing, they’ve had to make a number of significant repairs including, replacing one of the power lift gate cylinders, the steering column, three replacements of seat trim piece that keep braking, and those are the major items. If you’ve been following, you’ll also know my experience with Courtesy Nissan here in Tampa hasn’t been good.

I had an issue with the two front door windows. Especially on the passenger side, any push of the of the window button (up or down), resulted in a rather loud “snap” or pop. This happened consistently 100% of the time. It happened sometimes on the driver’s side. Since I’m nearing the end of my manufacturer warranty, I wanted to get this issue resolved, so this past Wednesday, I stopped by Courtesy Nissan to schedule an appointment.

I describe the symptoms to the service advisor taking my information, and the service advisor next to him broke in to say, “there’s a recall on that” (I think he meant to say service bulletin). He went on to say that something didn’t properly glued, and that he’d written a couple of service orders for that recently. As we were scheduling, I explained since I was still under warranty, I’d need a car to get back to the office. The service advisor told me they wouldn’t do that for such a quick repair, and I asked how long. He responded that it would take no more than 2 hours. I was skeptical, but agreed to an 8AM appointment this past Friday, with the understanding, I’d be out no later than 10AM.

Well, I arrived at about 7:45 Friday morning. The Service Advisor who wrote the order wasn’t in yet, but one of the others started looking, and guess what, somehow, despite coming by and being right in front of the guy, he hadn’t managed to schedule the appointment. Of course I was not a happy camper, and made that clear. They were all about, “well we’ll get you in,” but of course, that’s like how the doctor’s office “works you in.” I’d gone to the trouble to make an appointment, and expected to be in and out as promised.

Then I go into the waiting room, and it’s not long until the Service Advisor comes in to say, they need me to show them the problem…of course they claim they can’t find the problem. I knew exactly what was going on when I walked out there, and the Service Manager (always looking to be an asshole) was standing there. They were both on the driver’s side, so I walked to the passenger side, hit the button several times up and down, and said, “you mean to tell me that neither of you can hear that?” Well, it seems it wasn’t so loud when they were doing it. For crying out loud, that button is an AB switch…it’s all down, all up, or off…you can’t finesse it. Of course, then he starts the song and dance about, we’ll have to see if this is a warranty issue.

I’d had it with Richard Phelps, the Service Manager, so I just told him I didn’t understand what he got out of trying to always create an adversarial situation. I explained that the window operation wasn’t a “consumable” item, so that yes, they would fix it….and that unfortunately for them, it wouldn’t even matter if my warranty had run out, since one of their other Service Advisors had spilled the beans about it being a service bulletin issue, and that could be sure I’d looked it up, and did they want the bulletin number?

At 9AM, I go to the Service Advisor, and ask him what the diagnosis is, and how much longer, reminding him of the agreed 10AM completion time for this “simple” fix. He goes to check on it, and finally comes back to tell me I can have a loaner, and they’ll call when it’s done. Obviously, it is not the simple fix he claims, or no one had even started on the car. They finally called around 3:15 to tell me it was ready. It’s just sad. I can’t believe it is that hard to give decent auto service.

I just don’t get it. I understand that your sales person could care less what happens once you sign the paperwork. He’s made his money, but are service departments not also profit centers? Do they really imagine that, once the warranty is out, I’d take the car back to them, ever? Do they think that I’d ever consider buying another car, only to have to potentially deal with the absolute asshole who runs their service department? I’m sure I’m one customer the General Manager will be glad isn’t coming back, but I don’t see how they get to keep it up.

I’ll concede the General Manager stepped up and basically gave me a couple of free oil changes, but that hardly covers the inconvenience and bad service. His other proposed solution was to offer me a very good deal on something that might be more to my liking, such as a another Pathfinder. I got a call from one of their sales people a few times, but never with a vehicle I was interested in, and at this point, I just have a sneaking suspicion the GM would tell this tale at some sales meeting, about he got over a unsatisified customer, by selling him yet another car and making a bunch of money off that sale, and they’d all yuck it up big time. None of the deals offered seem to be “outstanding” deals to me.

Hidden Figures – A Movie Review

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Jun 022017

Hidden Figures Movie PosterAs the United States raced against Russia to put a man in space, NASA found untapped talent in a group of African-American female mathematicians that served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in U.S. history. Based on the unbelievably true life stories of three of these women, known as “human computers”, we follow these women as they quickly rose the ranks of NASA alongside many of history’s greatest minds specifically tasked with calculating the momentous launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, and guaranteeing his safe return. Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, and Katherine Johnson crossed all gender, race, and professional lines while their brilliance and desire to dream big, beyond anything ever accomplished before by the human race, firmly cemented them in U.S. history as true American heroes.

Director: Theodore Melfi
Writers: Allison Schroeder (screenplay), Theodore Melfi (screenplay)
Cast: Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe,  Kevin Costner, Kirsten Dunst, Jim Parsons, Mahershala Ali, Aldis Hodge     Aldis Hodge

Rating: PG; Run Time: 127min; Genre:  Biography, Drama, History; Release Date: 23 December 2016 (USA)

We watched on a weekend evening a while, and both of us loved it. I hope it is something younger people see, so as to get just a taste of the discrimination and racism that existed, even a place of highly educated people, bent on keeping up a polite façade.  And besides the lessons/reminders about our past, it was just a great movie. Continue reading »

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

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Jun 012017

Rogue One Movie PosterAll looks lost for the Rebellion against the Empire as they learn of the existence of a new super weapon, the Death Star. Once a possible weakness in its construction is uncovered, the Rebel Alliance must set out on a desperate mission to steal the plans for the Death Star. The future of the entire galaxy now rests upon its success.

Director: Gareth Edwards
Writers: Chris Weitz, Tony Gilroy,John Knoll, Gary Whitta, George Lucas
Cast: Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Alan Tudyk, Donnie Yen, Wen Jiang,  Ben Mendelsohn, Guy Henry, Forest Whitaker, Jimmy Smits, James Earl Jones
Music: Michael Giacchino

Rating: PG-13; Run Time: 2h 13min; Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi; Release Date: 16 December 2016 (USA)

Lay’s not into the these, so I watched this a few Saturday’s back when he was having to work. It was definitely worth watching if you are a Star Wars fan. I’d say it beats several of last Star Wars movies. Continue reading »

Weekly Twitter Digest

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May 272017

Saving the Republic – My Master Plan

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May 262017

Trump TV PosterI’ve come up with an idea for how to save the Republic from the mafia family currently trying to take it over. This of course means getting the “Clown-in-Chief, Trump, and his gang of thieves out of the White House. First, I need to establish some background about Trump and recent events. Continue reading »

Rick Baker Still Has An Issue With LGBT People

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May 232017
Photo of former St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Baker

Would you buy a used car from this guy?

So Rick Baker has decided he wants to be Mayor of St. Petersburg again. The problem is, the guy may be full of more crap than Donald Trump. One of his biggest issues is how he has treated the very large and active LGBT community in St. Pete. During all his years as Mayor, he consistently refused to sign a Pride Proclamation, and never once got close to the St. Pete Pride event.

Let’s think about this for a minute. The LGBT Pride Festival in St. Pete has grown to be the largest in Florida, and one of the largest in the nation. This is an event that injects nearly $20 million dollars per year into the local economy. Now what Mayor wouldn’t put himself right in the middle of an event that brought that much money into a city, especially during the Summer when tourism is at a lull? Well, if you are that much of a bigot like Baker, you wouldn’t. Continue reading »

Straight Outta Compton – A Movie Review

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May 232017

Straight Outta Compton Movie PosterIn 1987, five young men, using brutally honest rhymes and hardcore beats, put their frustration and anger about life in the most dangerous place in America into the most powerful weapon they had: their music. Taking us back to where it all began, Straight Outta Compton tells the true story of how these cultural rebels-armed only with their lyrics, swagger, bravado and raw talent-stood up to the authorities that meant to keep them down and formed the world’s most dangerous group, N.W.A. And as they spoke the truth that no one had before and exposed life in the hood, their voice ignited a social revolution that is still reverberating today.

Director: F. Gary Gray
Writers: Jonathan Herman, Andrea Berloff
Stars: O’Shea Jackson Jr., Corey Hawkins, Jason Mitchell, Neil Brown Jr., Aldis Hodge, Marlon Yates Jr., R. Marcos Taylor, Carra Patterson, Alexandra Shipp, Paul Giamatti

Genres: Biography, Drama, History, Music; MPAA Rating: Rated R for language throughout, strong sexuality/nudity, violence, and drug use; Release Date: 14 August 2015; Run time: 2 hrs 27 min Continue reading »

Surviving Compton: Dre, Suge, and Michel’le – A Movie Review

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May 222017

michelleCelebrated hip-hop recording artist Michel’le will speak up and speak out about the darker side of Compton hip-hop as she narrates the Lifetime Original Movie, “Surviving Compton: Dre, Suge & Michel’le,” based on her life story, premiering Saturday, October 15 at 8PM ET/PT. The first lady of Ruthless Records, who triumphed over a life riddled with abuse and adversity, is ready to share her story with the world.

Director: Janice Cook
Cast: Rhyon Nicole Brown, Curtis Hamilton, R. Marcos Taylor, Jamie Kennedy
Produced for Lifetime by Sony Pictures Television and Thinkfactory Media.
Aired on October 15, 2016 on the Lifetime Channel

I believe this might be the first made-for-TV movie I’ve reviewed. We had recorded this, and watched it Sunday morning. It was an interesting bio-pic about the hip-hop music scene, narrated by someone who’d lived it, Michel’Le. I’m not all that familiar with the artists involved, but Lay’s watched enough things, and I’ve seen enough in the news to feel that it had a sense of authenticity. It’s real. It’s raw, and at times, painful to watch. But this portrayal of NWA’s Dr. Dre and Suge Knight told by ex-girlfriend Michel’le is claimed to be the untold true story.

Set in Compton, Dr. Dre is on the hunt for a new act when he meets Michel’le, a pint-sized singer with a squeaky voice. Brought to them by Eazy E., Dr. Dre and his group aren’t sure that Michel’le has the look or the sound that they are looking for. But singing her first song is enough to get them interested. They sign Michel’le on to the label, but not before Dr. Dre takes a romantic interest in her. Soon, a tumultuous and rocky relationship emerges as Michel’le deals with the rising rapper’s thunderous temper and physical abuse. This is followed by similar relationship with Suge.

The actors all played their parts well, and brought out the tension in their lives, especially Rhyon Nicole Brown. I’d say this one was worth watching if you have any interest in that genre of music, and some of the main characters.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars6 Stars7 Stars8 Stars9 Stars10 Stars (1 votes, average: 6.00 out of 10)