Answering the REAL important questions of the day

I can't believe I haven't said anything about this earlier, my bad. Anyways... a few weeks back I made the trek up to South Dakota for my cousin Angie's wedding. Side note: man oh man is that a long drive. Good times had by all, just like we always do in my family....

BUT, along the way I found out the answer to a very important question that was asked about 8 years ago...

"So they serve hamburgers at Taco Johns?"

On my way to South Dakota... I stopped at the Taco John "Mexpress" (epic) in Rockwell City... and I got the answer.

Hamburgers, no. Taco Burgers, yes. So technically they do serve burgers. Ending a long debate.

So there you have it.

Yes. Yes, they do serve burgers at Taco Johns.

And the Earth is a better place for it.


The Epic Battle for Surpremacy in God's County

A little break from politics here... because back in God's Country, it's opening week of football. And who do the Mighty Hawks start with? Those red and black clad derelicts from south of the Hamilton County line. Yes... the Iowa/Iowa State, the Celtics/Lakers, the Duke/UNC... Good/Evil... the epic rivalry of small town Central Iowa High School athletics...

The South Hamilton/Roland-Story Game.

All kidding and name calling aside... it is one of the best rivalries in Iowa. You think it is foolish to keep holding on to old high school rivalries?

You just ask any fella whoever wore one of those glorious symbols of freedom, a jersey that is red and white with "HAWKS" on the front. Ask any fella who has worn those dreadful dingy black with red trimmed jerseys with horned barbarians on their sleeves (*smirk*).

If you grew up with a Roland, Story City, Jewell, Ellsworth, Randall or Stanhope address... this is a big deal. You never, ever forget the South Hamilton/Roland-Story game. It's the first game you circle once the schedule is out. Bragging rights for an entire year and pride are on the line. No matter who's up or down, it's always a great game.

The Ames Trib has a good preview. Check it out here.

Last year, the Mighty Hawks had methodical drive that was sure to make many in Story City lose their lutefisk that night. Are we in for a wild finish this year? You betcha. The good guys have to travel to Story City... where South Hammies do not need to be reminded... they aren't so good at telling time in Scanda-cheat-ya. Yes, the decks will be stacked against Coach Coy's Warriors for Truth, Justice and the American Way.

I have faith.

I have faith that the honorable men in white will "fight through the night," defeat evil and "will bring home a victory."


Stay thirsty my friends.


How many days?

How many days until the election? Hmmm… how many? Oh. Oh yes. There’s 69 days until Election Day. *heavy heavy smirk* Just a quick hit here… oh don’t you worry, there are scores of more things to chirp about.

ABOUT LAST NIGHT - Man, late primaries may be a little foreign to us… but, how awesome are they? For me, watching other state’s primary election returns are like watching game 7 of a playoff series with 3 games all. I did tell you I’m a county supervisor for Dork County, right? Last night we got a little taste or maybe a little bit of political junkie fix with 5 state’s primary elections. John McCain won the nomination comfortably after a stiff fight… and we had ourselves a good ole street brawl in all sorts of races in Florida. Some mixed bags out there on what happened… But one thing is showing up and look for it here locally… because this will be the formula as we’ve already seen in the 3rd Congressional District.

Here’s the game plan for anyone "in trouble" to paraphrase Tim Russert: Go negative, go negative, go negative.

Look at the McCain race in Arizona, look at the Murkowski race in Alaska. Which one went negative? Which one didn’t? Which one won? Better stock up on brown paper bags on this Fall’s election. Because this is good she’s gonna look, if you catch my drift.

STATE VS FEDERAL - During all of the coverage yesterday, Politico’s Jonathan Martin had a tweet than rang some sense when it comes to campaigns in any state.

“FL great example of chasm btwn what folks in dc care about (Sen) and what pol class in state cares about (Gov)”

Let me translate for those not in Twittersburgh…. He is saying something like Florida is a great example of what DC/National peeps care about (US Senate and US House) versus what the political class in the state cares about (Governor, Legislature). This isn’t the only truth in Florida, but I argue every state in the union. It couldn’t be true here in our home state, but we being Iowa… always can have a twist on it. And why is that you ask? Let’s break it down.

State races will always out Trump and Federal race. Think about it. JMart talks about the political class in state, who’s that? Lobbyists and their associations… Elected officials and their constituencies… Political parties and their members… Big business owners and Unions…. so on and so on. It’s pretty simple. Where’s most of the political and monetary influence in Iowa? The Stateside. This is where they get their meal ticket and influence. It’s not rocket science.

Just thought that was a good take that’s not said enough. What do you think? While you chirp in the comment section... Get out of you chair and show off your epic moves to a littleTerence Trent D'Arby... Stay thirsty my firends.


50,000 or something like that

If you're gonna celebrate something, why not with the Buckinghams? Makes sense to me.

So... yeah. By the time you all get here... I think I might have already passed 50,000 unique visitors or whatever the hell the thing at the bottom means. It's weird, never thought there would be something worth 50,000 people taking a look... but I guess so.
You make it this far... it's kind of a big deal. So, I should give some shout outs... in no particular order of course....

QCI-DERS - Aka... my loyal readers. Thanks for putting up with this very horrible usage of technology and the English language. I appreciate the feed back, good thoughts and encouragement along the way. it means a lot to me.
HATERS - Yups, talking to you peeps who hate it up in the inbox. It's all good. It's means you're reading. Thanks dudes... haters make you stronger.
CAMPAIGNS - Yeah... how many of you are dumb enough to add me to your press list and actually give me a seat at your events... OK, you're not so dumb... actually pretty cool. Thanks for reaching out.
AL GORE - Dude, thanks for creating these interwebs. Off the chain, dude. Off the chain.
PROPS TO MY TWEEPS - Yeah, I'm talking to you Twitter stalkers. You guys rule too.
GUEST/GHOST WRITERS - Man... especially the kids who knock out the "Gameday" posts. They out did themselves as always. They are always contributing to a story... or make a joke that usually makes it way here. These creepos are so creative and make soda come out your nose... especially when you are collaborating. Just awesome.
PEEPS WHO PROVIDE LINKAGE - There have been a ton of peeps who have linked this garbage a time or two. Thanks. You linking me up means you thought it might be worth wasting other people's time.

There are a bunch of other who I know are going to email me and be all pissy that I forgot to thank them... all I can say is. Sorry. Not that I'm sorry that I'm awesome... but I'm sorry you're awesome too. Can we be friends?

So yeah... what will bring the next 50,000 hits? Not sure.... will it make it that long? Your guess is as good as mine. As long as I'm having fun doing this... and as long as people are reading... sure. When that stops... I'll be done. End of story.

Not that I'm planning on going anywhere for a while. So stop that stinkin' thinkin'.

How about doing something in honor of our 50,000 hits? How something from the 5 Stairsteps?
Do your self a favor and crank this.... move it and groove it... and as always... stay thirsty my friends.


The Big Upset you're not reading about... yet.

Things are finally starting to get interesting around here. One of my very favorite things about politics is the people. Old friends, chairs, former colleagues… it’s the best thing about politics. Lately, I've been hearing from some folks and been studying some things with my view in the cheap seats. Good ole Leonard Boswell. I have had my run ins with him over the years. And I gotta tell ya, he's a great guy and nice fella. It’s true. This is why he’s been so successful in all of his tough elections.

Every cycle, we’re told how Boswell is in trouble. He usually is, but that’s just because of the district make up and his voting record. Nothing new here if you been following him since he won Jim Ross Lightfoot’s seat in Congress in 1996. Cycle after cycle we are pushed to believe this hype. In 2010, this hype is real. Leonard Boswell is in trouble. Deep deep trouble. The 3rd Congressional District has been the bell weather for the past few cycles. Finally this year, no storm shelter is sturdy enough in Boswell’s case.

ENTER ZAUN – We may have the perfect candidate, Brad Zaun. Look at the stats. Well liked, hard worker… good record and experience. But the key here is he knows everyone in Polk County, all thanks to his tough State Senate race a while back. Most Central Iowa voters (code for Polk County) know his name just from the television blitz that was ran. How do you think he won the primary? Name ID. There are people in Altoona who probably think they have voted for him in the past… just because of his name ID.

POLLS – I remember everyone being so surprised Brad won with a large margin in the primary. Didn’t anyone see the first poll in that race? That huge lead he had? Why are we surprised? It is the next poll that raised eyebrows, the post primary poll that showed Zaun up 10. Sending sonic booms over on Fleur Drive. A few weeks a go… another poll was released, showing similar results. You can argue and dispute polls until you’re blue in the face... but friends, this creates the trend. Also, has the other side disputed this trend? I think I hear crickets.

BOSWELL AD – Leonard’s campaigns have always been well put together. Disciplined and steady. But I’m not seeing this or hearing this in the 2010 version. You don’t have to look further than his first radio ad released. What happened to the ad that plays every 2 years that reminds us that he used to fly helicopters in the Army? If you needed to learn anything about how well Brad Zaun is doing… it’s this ad. For the first time that I can remember, Leonard Boswell has started a re-election campaign with an attack ad. Not from the DCCC, from his pocket. What is more surprising… the ad is a complete swing and a miss.

Oh, you think I jest? The main part of the hit is that he’s against renewable fuels. And Team Boswell was sneaky enough to have audio of Zaun making a statement. Well, at least the ad was done well. But other than that it’s a swing and a miss… mostly on the issue they choose to hit.

YEAH I KNOW IT’S IOWA – Yes, renewable fuels, ethanol and all that jazz is important here. I don't believe this translates into an effective attack on Zaun. Think about it. What county dominates the 3rd? How many of these people in this county does a renewable fuels impact? The reason why this is a swing and a miss is because this issue gets lost in translation. Only in the 11 rural counties does this make an impact and the majority of these areas are good for us anyway.

I’ll argue that the ethanol, renewable fuels stuff gets a little over played here. Now before Monte Shaw starts blowing up my phone, yes this is a big deal for Iowa. You don’t have to sell it to me. My family depends on this industry. What I’m saying is… it’s a little over used and was used poorly in the first attack on his challenger. If this is the best issue they have to start with… he is in trouble.

It’s a weak hit and not characteristic of a Boswell Campaign.

WHY BRAD ZAUN IS GOING TO WIN – In all campaigns, you always have to lay out lists of strengths and weaknesses. In a good race, someone figures out how to do the things better their opponent. And usually figures out how to do things better at the very same thing their opponent is the strongest. But default, because who he is… Brad Zaun is beating Leonard Boswell at his own game.

Why does Leonard always win? People like him. It’s true. I like the guy. If you happen to catch him grocery shopping at IngerDahls, you witness it. He’s friendly and polite. Doesn’t ruffle too many feathers when he votes. He’s your Grandpa. This is why he does well all the time.

Usually, his campaign and the DCCC will create a narrative and make his opponents, bad guys. It’s true. Stop your fibbin’ sound familiar? That punk kid attorney from Des Moines… the Rich Kid with silver spoon? Remember all of these? A strategy that creates him is the nice guy and gives reasons to dislike the opponent.

Creating some argument to create Brad as a bad person or some bad label simply won’t stick. He knows everyone. People know him… and they like him. When you run into Brad Zaun, even if you disagree with him on an issue, you can’t help to just to not like the guy. He’s genuine with his answers, always energetic and will tell you what he thinks. Just a straight up fun and great guy.

By Brad, being Brad… he is beating Leonard Boswell on his own schtick. You think this is an over simplification of why Brad is winning? You can hear me now and believe me later. The only way Boswell is going to make a dent… is to be what he’s not. A jerk and a junkyard dog. This is the only move he has left. Once this happens… not only is this going to sink Boswell… the bad news is… because National Democrats will become so desperate to keep this seat.. or any seat for that matter... they will destroy a reputation of one of their own. A decent man.

Good news is… its August. It’s too late. I’m not sure why hits weren’t coming in the middle of June. This is the same reason why Culver’s apology at the fair is late. Timing is everything… good thing they must be out of batteries for their clocks over on Fleur Drive.


I John Kerry'd on the State Fair...

OK... I so a lot of things have changed since I posted last. My good pal Wes convinced me that I should give the State Fair a... "fair shake"... oh look, I punned. Anyways, I took him up on it. This is when I had my Green Eggs and Ham moment with the Fair... here's how it goes down.

Hey! Let's go to the Fair!

We shall drink beers and have loads of fun!
You in for the Eastside? C'mon son!

I don't like the State Fair, Wes,
I hate the State Fair, Wes-I-am.
When I went, I always had to work,
I'd get way too hot wearing a button down shirt.

Working numerous days I did not enjoy,
Spending too much money on food, oh boy!
I would get overheated in the sun,
Working there numerous days was not so much fun.

They would ask, hey, is this pen was for free?
I'd say No! No! You leave me be.
I'd listen to Clifford singing over and over again,
My mind would scream, Lord, please make this end!

I so dislike the Fair, my friend Wes,
I would rather go out in a poke-a-dot dress.

I would not go there if BB King were singin the blues,
I would not go there escorted with Elizabeth Shue.
I will not go for the food of the Fair,
I would not go to see the '85 Bears.
I will not go there on a fast jet,
I would not go there to see George Brett.
I will not go there to scope out hot chicks,
I do not care about your pork chops on a stick.
I will not roll to the Eastside,
I will not go even if you drive.
I will not go there even if you can smoke,
I will not go there to see the Pope!
I will not go there to rock out to '80s bands,
I would not go there with hundreds of dollars in my hand.
I so much dislike the Fair, so much this is clear,
I will not, would not go if they had free beer.

I do not like the Iowa State Fair!

I do not like it, Wes-I-Am.

You hate the State Fair, so you say,
You're not working it now, so try, try it if you may.
You might like it and all the libations,
You will like it with zero work obligations.

Wes, I don't know,
With all the food and all the shows.
It may be a wash, I don't know,
It’s been a while since I had to go.

I don't have to work it and this is true,
I still find it hard to believe you.

I find it hard to believe you, Wes-I-Am.

You will like it, these are your people,
This is your Church with the things and the steeple.
We shall go tonight and it will be fun,
Cold beer, fried food and much less sun.

Wes-I-Am, if I go and don't like it, will that be fine?
I don’t like it but it sounds like a good time.


So I will take you up on this trek,
Can’t promise I’ll like it, I won’t make any bets.



I just saw 7 people wearing Metallica shirts,
Wait, hear those cars racing in the dirt?
I’m starting to see why there is so much fuss,
Dude, check out the pig with the ginormous nuts.

I’m having a good time, Wes-I-Am!
I’m even rocking out to the Buckinghams!
It’s much more much fun when you don’t have to work,
No dealing with the freeloaders and loud mouth jerks.

I ate two things of cheese curds and didn’t get sick,
I ate six! Six pork chops on stick!
Dude in a mullet, man that’s some sweet hair,
Wes, I’m think I’m starting to like the State Fair.

I do!

I like the Iowa State Fair!

And I would go, could go during a storm,
I would go could go if it was a little warm.
I will get my Hawkeye poster and do the carnie rides,
How could I have doubted fun on the Eastside!
I will go would there even with tobacco to chew,
I could only hope I could go with Elizabeth Shue.
I would go to the Fair on any chance,
I would go there in my Nantucket Red pants.
I would go to see all the animals and critters,
I would go and eat two or three more pork fritters!
I would go could go everyday,
I’d even consider going there with John Elway.
How could I hate this with so many blinders?
How could I dislike anything that serves guinea grinders?
I have to admit Wes, the State Fair is great,
I’ll even drink the big beers for dollars of eight!
The mix of the crowd is so eclectic,
The State Fair is do I dare say, epic.

Wes-I-am, you are a good friend,
Fun like the Fair should never end.
You changed my mind, I changed my stand,
Thank you, Thank you, Wes-I-Am.


The State Fair started... I hate it, I think...

Jeez Lousie... you say one bad Tweet about the State Fair and it's like I said something bad about someone's mother. I know... I'm weird, but I think I can explain... and maybe ther is hope for me that will please the State Fair maniacs.

PEOPLE FREAK OUT - When I tell them this. As a loyal reader told me, "Crappy food, booze, politicians, John Deere, live tunes. What's not to love?" I reply back with, "I hate the Fair." Then the loyal reader says, "I think I'm sad to hear you say that. It breaks a little piece of my heart. The happiest guy around, hates the Fair." That hit a little home for me. Yeah man, the Fair should totally be my schtick. I mean all of the stuff mentioned above. It's on the Eastside. I used to have a mullet. This would seem like a G$ paradise. But... after thinking about it. I figured out why I hate the fair.

STUPID POLITICS - Urgh... so... like for 10 years or so... I had to work the GOP booth. And a lot of times... multiple days. It's too much. This is what broke me on the fair. Listen, working a shift, one shift is great. But numerous days... and people wanting free shit... here's where I lose it...

Random Mooch: Hey, is this pen free, bud?
Me: No, numb nuts. I'm using it to register you and others to vote.
Random Mooch: Awe man... Now I'm not voting for you now.
Me: Really, because you didn't get a free pen?
Random Mooch: Yea, bud. Everything else is free.
Me: Oh well, uh... I hear they're testing tack hammers around the corner. They're giving away free hits in the head.
Random Mooch: Cool, bud. I'll check it out. Thanks, bud!
Me: Sigh....

Yeah. Adds to the hate. Every year I'd work it... I would have a buddy call, "Hey man! Hitting the Bud Tent around 6, you in?" I'll be like, "Sure, that's when my shift is done. In." Then 6 rolls around. I just go home. Yes. I skipped out on beer. I know. Disturbing. But... seriously. Too burnt out on the Fair for beer. See, told you. Not good.

MORE STUFF I DISLIKE - On top of the just working... it's usually hot. I got sick from being to hot there a time or two. Yes. Drink more water, got it. I'm a cold weather guy I guess. Then... stuff is expensive. Especially when you're there multiple days... to work it. I know, these are small bitches... but just adds to it.

STUFF I DO LIKE - I guess hate is too strong of a word. I mean... the food is awesome... the beer, always ice cold. I used to set a corn dog and pork chop budget. And I totally had a great time at the Journey concert way back when. I alwaysscore decent Hawkeye gear and posters from the U of I booth. So there are things I like.

I HAVE SOMETHING SHOCKING TO ADMIT - So many of you know. I kind of have a street cred on knowing stuff around here. I can name every county and their county seat. Tell you the good small town joints and bars to hit. Places you must see. But, I'll admit. Never seen the Butter Cow... you know... and the other must see things. I have seen the big pig with the huge menards... I bet he has a very high self esteem with thems things. So yea... I guess... I've never really done the Fair.

MAYBE THERE IS HOPE FOR ME AND THE FAIR - I have taken a break from the Fair since leaving politics. I just don't go... and I say I hate it. It's a very childish notion. It's like when I used to not eat mushrooms... and said I hate them. Simply because I never tried them. Maybe... just maybe I should just go to the Fair. Give it a legit shot. I mean... there's all sorts of G$-ish things that I would dig... I don't have to work it... I may even enjoy it. I mean... one of my favorite oldies bands is playing it this year... the Buckinghams... so maybe...

Hmm.... Maybe this could be my very own Sam I Am moment...

Alright. I will give it a shot. I'm going to do the Fair. But I need experienced peeps help. Seriously guys, I've never done the thing. Just worked. Who want's to go with me? Who has the tips of things I gotta hit?

Hit up the comment section... and stay thirsty my friends.


Flood Coverage via the Book of Faces

For you non locals and non ISU peeps, this is Stange Ave in Ames. Photo ripped off from Swany's Facebook Mobile Uploads this morning.

Hearing some disturbingly familiar news coming out of Ames this morning. Please send some good vibes up North and everyone else dealing with this mess. I got tons of family and friends up there. From a few updates from them. All seem to be alright. Just too soggy and can't get around town so well. But everyone is safe.

As I said, the pictures from Ames are familiar to what happened in 1993. Kind of freaky, but last week I was just looking at the line in the Scheman Building of where the water levels were in '93. My guess is its about there right now.

If there is anything to call "cool" at times like these compared to '93, is there are hundreds of reports on the floods via social media. Here's what a few of my peeps are saying about Ames and other flooding via Facebook statuses this morning...

"Yes that's 9.10 inches of rain in the last 24 hours folks."

"I've begun rationing Sun Chips...just in case..."

"Good think I have a Kayak! I may need it!"

"Rain washes out practice at the Jewell Golf course--will be practicing at the high school today (10:00) and Friday (9:00)--swimming is good exercise but not on a cross country course. Can it rain anymore around here--need some dry time!"

"spent the morning on a date with a wet vac in the basement"

"Any suggestions on how to get to Des Moines today? Might be an adventure."

"Giving a shout out to my sump pumps today as I watched all of my neighbors pumping water out of their basements"

"Prayers to the MANY people who are flooded, stuck because of the flood or are just trying to get home and aren't able...prayers for dry days and a quick and painless clean up. You can always by more things...but you can't replace the people you love...stay safe!"

"Beer trucks pulled from Ames today. I guess that is a good indication of how bad it is up there."

"And I-35 south of Ames is now closed, just peachy."

"too bad i live in north ames and was able to make it to work today"

"Seems like Armageddon around here...all major roads are closed around Ames and people are freaking out; yelling, screaming and honking at others on the road. Seems the only feasible means of transportation is on our bike. Couldn't even make it to daycare as all roads leading to are closed."

"Keeping everyone affected by the floods in our thoughts, especially those up in Ames."

"So and so called me and told me Des Moines better brace for more water. Lots of flooding up north and the Raccoon River is higher than he's ever seen it...and he's been around that river his entire life!"

"OK, so they have revised the forcasted crest down to 19.5' instead of 23'...still a mess, but not quite epic! I've now been up for almost 28 hours....time to shower and get some sleep...and then still golf tonight :)"

"Here's hoping that folks down home in Osky, Eddyville, and Cedar/Fremont can dry out today!"

Hope everyone is doing alright. Keep sending good vibes to those who need them. Just a quick thought that hit me while reading these this morning... per usual here... in the face of disasters, Iowans are as cool as the other side of the pillow. Bringing some humor to the situation, thoughts/prayers to those in need... and just dealing with it. Because that's how we roll in the literal Midwest Coast.


The Best Haircut of my Life

It's been about a year friends. Since I had the best haircut of my life. The Mullet. It was... everything that defined the term... epic.

Today is a day of reflection for me.

I mean... it took the better part of a year to grow it. That was the rough part. For those who know me real well... I'm not a very patient man. Sure I'm as happy go lucky as the next dude... but patience is not a virtue for me. Personally, I was surprised I hung with it... as long as I did.

It sure was a great haircut. I mean... look at the picture above. Look how it just flows right out of a hat. That coupled with mean ass facial hair? It's an effing solid look.

I miss it.

From the times when friends would say, "Hey, what's with your hair?" And the high fives that would follow when I replied, "I'm growing a Mullet, dude." Or bumping in to pals and people I deal with on a day to day basis... "Hey G$, that Mullet sure is startin' to look, really nice!"

One thing I learned one year ago is what this haircut's capabilities were. I mean.... Dudes... You could bring Peace with this thing... Bring some joy to this World. I'd run into someone, having a bad day... and then they would see my magnificent mane and be like, "Dude's rocking a mullet. Everything is gonna be alright. Everything is gonna be alright."

I never get into fights while I'm out and about. I'm a lover, not a hater. But once I rocked a mullet? I was stopping bar fights. This is when I knew...

Met up after work with some good pals. Out west at some suburban joint... We just sat down to grab a beverage... and basically WCW Monday Nitro was about to happen over by the pool table. You know how these things start. Probably some guy was talking to some dude's girl... and that don't work good a lot of times in those parts.

Choice words were exchanged. The pushing and shoving began... then the dudes were grabbing bar stools. This is when the Mullet took over. I snapped. I was like hell nah. I was out to watch a game and hang with my pals. I wasn't about to have cage match interrupt my evening or anyone else's.

I walked up to the dudes and yelled, "DUDES!" Joint went completely silent. I had their attention. Via the power of the mullet... the next words just flowed out of my mouth, "Hug it out, bitches."

My friends thought I was nuts. But I was starting to learn the power. The dudes who were ready to go Dusty Rhodes on each other's asses... looked at me... first with death glares... then they saw the hair... those glares turned to a look of shame as they looked at the ground. After a 10 seconds of silence later... One of them spoke up in a raspy voice, "The dude in the sweet hair is right. Can I buy you a beer, buds?" They hugged it out and shook hands.

I just looked at them, nodded my head and said, "This is good." And walked back across the joint to our table... that's when "Back in Black" cranked up on the jukebox... the good times rolled on.

There are witnesses. This is a true story.

I'm telling you guys. This was a regular occurrence when I had the mullet. Bringing awesome to everywhere I went. How couldn't you? When you are rocking the most important haircut in our Nation's history... you just do it.

One year ago... the business on top and party in the back was a special time for me. I think back today... remembering... thinking... and smiling. That was some pretty sweet hair if I do say so myself. In my day of reflection... I will always remember.... It was a great time.... the time of my life... errr... the best haircut of my life. Someone que the Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes. Stay thirsty my friends.


What'd You Do This Weekend?

Hell yes QCI-ders! What a weekend! It was probably the first weekend in a while where I had no real responsibilities. Meaning… didn’t have to be places for work or important family functions. Just a little weekend full of just fun.

GOOD FRIENDS, GOOD TIMES – So hung with my pals this weekend. It was like we were all 19 or something again. And… it was the first time I’ve attended a good ole fashioned kegger. Well… not traditional in a sense. We’re all old and stuff now. But here’s how Saturday starts with a phone call from a great pal mine.

[cell phone buzzes]

ME: What up?
MY BUDDY: [sings epic riff] Master! Master!
ME: [singing] Oh yeahh… KILL!
MY BUDDY: [sings epic riff from One]
ME: What up Homey Jomey from Wyoming?
MY BUDDY: Hey Money... Guess what I just bought?
ME: Special vinyl edition of Metallica?
MY BUDDY: Nah man, its aluminum. It has a pump. And it shines.
ME: Dude… for real?
MY BUDDY: [signing opening riff for Harvester of Sorrow]
ME: [singing] du dawh du du dut… dut dawh du dut dut….. ALL HAVE said their prayers! INVADE their nightmares!
ME: Shut the front door!
MY BUDDY: I don’t joke about things like this.
ME: Dude, you tap it yet?
MY BUDDY: Dude, why do you think I’m calling you?
ME: Dude…
ME: You had me at hello.

So it was on. And yes… per my pal’s wife… She was like, “He was like a kid in candy store when we picked up.”

WHY KEGS OF BEER ARE EPIC – We gather out west at my buddies house. Keg is tapped and then… showing our age… we begin to talk about the last kegger we attended. Because we are old… it seemed like ages ago. Then an epic discussion about kegs begins. The street cred you get when buy a keg. Especially when you’re in a suburban super market and all the other dudes are holding their wife/girlfriend’s purse… you just go to the customer service counter and say it… and of course, because you’re a bad ass…you say it a little bit louder so that many can hear you…

“Excuse me. I would like a keg of beer.”

You hear the other dudes at the store whisper under their breath…

“Hell yes.” “Bas ass.” “Man, I wish I could buy a keg of beer.” “Lucky.” “Hmmm keg.”

As we are yaking it up in the backyard. Playing some bags and washers… my pal comes up with the brilliant thought of what a keg can do to your day.

“Dude, there’s just something about it. When you’re at the store… The dude from the liquor department takes you to the back. Then wheels your keg through the store. Everyone notices you. Then he wheels it all the way out to your car. You just feel important. There’s a satisfaction you show to your fellow man. Yes dudes, I just bought a keg of beer.”

My buddy puts things in ways so that I can understand them.

THE GREAT KEG DEBATE – Of course… this always happens. How many beers are in a keg? What’s funny no one knows the true answer. There’s many different factors if you are trying to be accurate about it. Foam. What kind of cups. House Cups. Spillage. Keg stands. Topping it off. So many things. It’s like when you ask the owl how many licks does it take to get to the center of aTootsie Pop… the world may never know.

MAN UP – After long discussions… then there comes the taking it back part. What if you still have beer in it the next day? Do you have a Hair of the Dog gathering? Since we’re old we figure that’s usually out. Thus… you gotta kill the thing that night. Or else… creating a trail of tears in the morning… when you simply drain the rest in the yard. Because… of a couple of things.

1. There’s no way you’re gonna return a keg with a good amount still left.

2. There’s no way you’re gonna let the teenage punk at customer service give you the judgingly dirty look that you just returned a keg with beer still left in it.

Just like the sense of pride there is in the beginning… pride is on the line when you finish.

SO YEAH – We had a great time as always… and to rip off a bit from our pal Flyover Foodie… UNFORESEEN BONUS! When peeps ask you… “So what did you do this weekend?” You get the awesomeness answer. “I went to a kegger. What’d you do?” The person will probably look at the ground and say, “Oh, I went to see Inception with the GF. It was cool.” Then… you gotta help make ‘em feel better. “Yeah man, I heard that was cool.” But secretly you know and they know… they have been defeated. Just remember to invite them along next time.

So yeah keggers are epic. Care to share some kegger memories? Leave a comment… and crank this! YEAAAAAAAH!!!!!! Stay thirsty my friends.


BREAKING NEWS: Vander Plaats will not return to the Cleveland Cavaliers

Holy smokes! Welcome to all the new readers of the World's Crappiest Blog. You may wanna come back and check this joint out once in a while. Because... sometimes we actually have some decent things here... but you will find out a couple of things if you do indeed become a QCI-der:

1. I really, really, really suck at grammar and spelling. My only defense is that it sounded really good in my head. Sometimes I forget to tell my fingers how to type.
2. While we'll talk a lot of politics and we're considered an "insider's blog"... a lot of time we straight up get random. Be prepared for junior high toilet humor, Chiefs updates and other completely off subject randomnous. And yes, that is how I spell the word.

Cool? Alright... how about a quick run through. OK. Good.

MEHLMAN POST - Thanks for all of the feed back. If you didn't check it out yet, click here or simply scroll down to the next post. From some of your emails and texts yesterday, some of you tried to name names. Or get me to say who I think it is. I'm being honest with you. We don't know who it is. This thing will just happen. Also, thanks for the kind notes on it. And yes, that’s Luke Roth on the left end of the picture on the post. Miss that dude.

BOBBY V - Let's talk a little local stuff. So Bob Vander Plaats is back in the news today. He's not running for Governor. He got a new job. And like Krusty, I'll say it. That's what this was about from the very beginning. Call me James Hetfield or Lars Ulrich because it’s Sad But True.

TODAY’S GINORMOUS ANNOUNCEMENT – So judging by the media types’ tweets, this was breaking news. Let me sum up most of these tweets in 140 characters of my own:


I can’t see so well. Do I have the number 85 on my shirt today? Because I’m gonna say, child please. Seriously media peeps? This entire Bob Vander Plaats exercise has been more ridiculously served with a LeBron James “Decision” on whole wheat Brett Favre bun slopped up with a side of Terrell Owens. Would anyone like a tack hammer for their head? Yes, have some.

THE MARRIAGE THINGER - Alright, this is starting to spin in my head a bit. Ew… I hate the spinnys. Anyway, so now there is this campaign to throw out judges. I guess this is how you can do this? Hey you political hacks out there… how many times since you’ve been in politics have you had to answer the question about the judges on the back of the ballot? How many of you have a decent answer to explain that?

Good. Thought so. Me neither. Good luck trying to make this translation to the average Joe Six Pack who makes his decision on a candidate because… well, that was the last yard sign they saw on the way to the polls. YES!!! SEE!!! I TOLD YOU YARD SIGNS WIN ELECTIONS!!!! Especially when you’re starting this a whole 90 some odd days out from the election, NOICE! Everybody, let’s give them a round of applause. Golf clap? Golf clap.

EPIC MOVIE NEWS - Dudes... Did you see this?!!! JACKASS 3D!!!!! OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG!!!!! OH. MAH. GAWD!!! If you haven't seen the trailer for it yet.... YouTube... oh and you're welcome. How is this relevant today's post? Hmmm... not sure. I guess there's just something about watching a bunch of dudes doing mindless stunts that puts things right in my head. Thus, makes it in the list of things that matter. Dudes... did I mention its in 3D. *head explodes*

AND FINALLY… How about some hip hop that makes you nod ya head when yous holler attin yo boys. Cranka it tup suckers! Stay thirsty my friends.


Who will be the next Ken Mehlman?

Here’s a post to start a little bit of debate and to get you all thinking about the future of the party… 2012 and beyond.

It’s August and this is Iowa. For the past week or so… politically, my brain has been in strategery over drive. It’s almost the 11th anniversary of the 1999 Ames Straw Poll. We’re gearing up for “the real general election.” It looks to be a good Republican year. I ‘ve been reading Karl Rove’s book. The “I might be a 2012 candidate” types are coming to the cornfields. Silently, these camps are forming. Lately, I’ve been hanging out and exchanging long phone calls/texts with my ole Bush pals. Then Politico had a great article on the “Top Gets for 2012.” Smooshing all of that together in my head… I came up with this question… Who is going to be the next Ken Mehlman?

THE MEHLMANIAN ERA – I think we are nearing the end this era as it comes to political operations in our party. Naturally, because of change and those who have been in this system are beginning to move on to consulting or the private sector. But like the many greats before Ken, he has left his impact. It’s safe to say that from here on out all campaigns (if they plan to be successful) will have many Mehlmanian aspects to them

What makes a campaign, Mehlmanian?

Working your ass off. Commitment to grassroots politics. Steely eyed focused targeting. Setting goals and measuring results. Comraderie and loyalty. A sense of service to the party and the candidates we work for. Oh… and having a lot of fun doing all of the above. As a former colleague put to me the other day, the Mehlman model is simply setting streamlined goals and keeping a microscopic eye on results. This wasn’t really a new idea in campaigns. But Ken and his crew took this to high level of demanding results for every single aspect of the campaign. Getting a campaign to stop doing things, just for doing them.

A good example was with some of the Coalitions efforts. In the past chairs and leaders were recruited for every coalition. Farmers and Ranchers, Sportsmen, Veterans… give ‘em titles and put out a release. But now, everyone in the organization had goals with specific action items that could be tracked with simple Microsoft Excel sheet formulas. Now, you were not only getting more out of the work you did, but you could see what was happening in a tangible way so the tweaks could be make to the program along the way... thus being more successful.

THE START OF THE NEW STANDARD - This era began in 1999 when Ken made it to Iowa as Regional Political Director for Bush for President. He basically moved here and definitely earned his honorary Iowan status. From the Team Leader Program… to targeted lists... and many successes. Ken became the standard. I got a front seat to watch, work and observe the beginning of an era that changed the game for political operatives - forever. He took a team with now many familiar names, Sara Taylor and Scott Stanzel just to start, and then the development off this era began.

The Bush Team Leader program, phone banks with specific targets and of course the first set of spreadsheets to measure our results… it was building. We won in Iowa and the first group of Mehlmanites swarmed the other primary states. All practicing the things we built in Iowa, at Ken’s direction, the program and the definition of a Mehlmanian Campaign was being written. George W. Bush became President of the United States and Mehlman would now bring this model to the RNC. The Mehlmanian style would be spread to every single state and produce historic results.

WHY KEN WAS SUCCESSFUL – If we are going to figure out who the next Mehlman is… let’s explain why he was so successful and why we need to find the next one. Ken is a leader, in all aspects. Here’s the “this goes without saying” part. Dude is brilliant. Always thinking. Working hard, but working smart. But, in my opinion, the thing that made him successful was his ability to connect with anyone he came in contact with. This is what makes him great. From a Bush Farm Chair in Worth County, to the high rolling donor, to young green staffers (like I was) and inspiring entire staffs across the country. Ken just connected and was genuine doing so. Every time I see him he still asks, “Hey, how’s A-Money doing?” In reference to how’s my brother is doing.

He could read what motivated you and stepped back to let you achieve your goals... So long as you turned in your spreadsheets on time :). If you worked under Ken, you were lucky to hear and receive a Mehlman Pep Talk. And I’m telling ya guys, if you weren’t fired up to run through concrete walls after you heard it, your pilot light was out.

He is just one of those leaders like great football coaches. By Ken being Ken, he got the absolute most out of every single player.

THE MEHLMAN COACHING TREE – Like in the NFL, the Greats always have disciples and great success stories from the people surrounded by them. This is Mehlman Legacy. His coaching tree spreads all over the Country. Many have moved on to big things and successful campaigns. Like I said before, most are now getting to the consulting side of the game. This is why I believe we’re near the end of the Mehlmanian Era. His legacy will always be the standard and still impact every single day of any campaign. But with a new cycle on the horizon I believe a new era is about to unfold.

GEARING UP FOR 2012 – As I said, this is Iowa. Or as I refer to it, “The Hollywood of Politics.” This is where political operatives and the next “greats” get discovered. Sorry New Hampshire but it's true. From loyal sons and daughters of the Hawkeye State… to bright eyed, eager out of staters… this is where you go to cut your teeth and be discovered. Case in point? See the current Obama administration and the Bush 43 White House. At one point the Bush White House Political Department back in 2001 looked like our office out in Clive in ’99. “So what does this mean, G$?” Hang on, I’m getting to it.

Politico’s article on the “Best Gets for 2012” epitomizes the whole idea that this cycle has already begun. Others have been swooped up already for “Leadership PACs”. I know a lot of the listed in the “Best Gets.” Some very well, some just by conference calls or trainings along the way. Are these people the next Ken Mehlman? No. Now, before you send me your hate mail. I’m not knocking these people. They are the best. Smart. Uber-accomplished. Many have stemmed from the Mehlman Coaching Tree. All have their niches, strengths and talents that most wish they had a fifth of.

These folks have built reputations and legends of their own. They will all be leading different camps. And one of these people will lead the campaign to the general. But they won’t be able to leave an impact the size that Ken did. Why? These people already have their shticks. They are already trading on their own names. In one of these 2012 campaigns, there will be a person who will be the day-to-day cog that leads all to victory. The next Mehlman. “So G$, if these kids aren’t the next Ken, who is it?”

THE NEXT MEHLMAN – My answer? We haven’t even heard of he or she’s name yet. My prediction is that he or she will come up in a similar way that Ken did. Leaving a post from some Congressional office. Jumping on a campaign… moving to Iowa… moving up from a Regional Political Director of a young campaign… to becoming the Chairman of the RNC. Will it be the same path for the future Mehlman? Of course not. But this is recipe of the next grassroots political legend that is to come.

This person will take the lessons learn from the Mehlmanian Era and combine them with what we learned from the 2008 Obama campaign. The next Mehlman will have this ability to utilize the ever changing technologies with good ole fashioned grassroots neighbor-to-neighbor politics. And when this happens, hold on to your hats kids.

If we are to be successful as a party in this decade we should, and I hope candidates have an eye open, for the next Ken Mehlman. While no one is ever the same as the greats, this person will be the great on their own name… and when that happens… we’ll start a new era of success.

Anyone have ideas on who it will be? Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments and as always… stay thirsty my friends.


Sucka Emcees Can't See Me...

Holy eff dudes. Where the hell is this Summe going? Anyone else think this one is going fast? Dayam.
Anyways. It's been a while... So I decided I would do a randomish... type of camp update... you know like... how's the Summer going... for the Summer of Epic... oh and a little house cleeaning procedures here at QCI.
So... in no particular order of stuff...
BUICK WEEK - Holy crap man... so awesome. #goodjoboutofyou to my Dad and his crew for putting on an awesome, awesome event up in Ames this week. The highlight was Friday. Freaking. Amazing. I have never seen my hometown packed like that. 250 plus classic Buicks in Downtown Jewell. And from talkng to the Buick folks... it was the best time they have had these national meets. A lot of people from across North America found out, I've known for years. Jewell rules.
EPIC FOOD WEEK - I gotta tell ya. Are you paying attention Flyover Foodie? HOT DISH! So dudes... had a ton of sweet corn this past week. FTW! Got to celebrate the good stuff from back home. From basically pork everything... tenderloin, chops and yes... my favorite, pork burgers. Then, epic turkey... from God's Country. We have a ton of turkey producers back home. Here's a quick fact... if you order a turkey sandwich from Subway... 9 times out of 1o... it came from Southern Hamilton County. #goodjoboutofyou Mark Dorenbush and crew for great turkey uptown. Oh... and we serve over a ton of corn up in Jewell Friday. Off. The. Chain.
HICKORY PARK - Yes... I even hit that up. Yes... I have said it's kind of over rated. That's just because, I'm from there. While entertaining peeps from out of town... I utilized a new saying for you all... "When in Rome, do what the Romans do. If you're from Rome, entertain the guests." Hickory Park is still great. Never had a bad meal there... for the record. But there are other great joints... just wish O'Malley and McGee's was still around. I and many others from the area miss that joint.
POLITICS - Not sure if there's much to report... I mean... it's freaking August. New ads are going up... most of them beating the shit out of each other. I know this is nessesary... but... sometimes... I just wish on both sides... they could tell a story why their candidate is great. Not why the other sucks. This goes for both sides. But, it is what it is.
QCI BOOK CLUB? Hmmmm... maybe. A loyal reader asked what I have been reading this Summer. So here it is.... In the middle of the Karl Rove book. It's awesome. Finished the Dick Vermeil biography earlier this summer... and started to read... for the 6th time, Why We Suck by Denis Leary. I still LOL while reading it. Did I really just type LOL? Sigh... gonna pick up Game Change next. Heard it's like crack cocaine for political junkies. Like the good stuff from over seas. Not the stuff that's cut here. Yeah... not making Coke references? Uh... well... I guess.
AND FINALLY... More stuff... have an epic thought on 2012 that you might enjoy. Stay thirsty my friends... and a crank this awesome from the 90's...