Tater Takes On Guilty Pleasures, Reviews and Anything Else That Pops Into His Weird Mind

Guilty Pleasures: I don’t believe in guilty pleasures.I read, watch and listen to plenty of things people will make fun of. I recently had that happen with my love of the Hamilton soundtrack and musicals in general. Around this same time someone mentioned something being their “guilty pleasure.” I don’t understand the concept of a guilty pleasure. If you enjoy something why would it make you feel guilty. Unless, of course, that “pleasure” is illegal or immoral. If this is the case then, yes, you should feel guilty. I freely admit to things that others would call a guilty pleasure with no shame at all. I love musicals. I watch Grey’s Anatomy. I watched Gilmore Girls regularly when it was on TV. I read sparkly pink YA book meant for teenage girls. I got addicted to the Game Show Network while at my mom’s house and wish I was home in the afternoon to watch Chain Reaction. I watched the soap opera Santa Barbara from the first to the last episode. I’m currently watching Live with Kelly and think Fred Savage should become the permanent co-host. I’m addicted to Facebook and spend a lot of time on social media. Does any of this make me guilty or ashamed? Nope. Why would I be ashamed to send time watching or reading things that make me happy? I don’t feel the need to pretend to be something I’m not. I don’t care if book, movies or music(80’s and pop punk) get good reviews. I only care about how they make me feel.

Reviews: I recently read a review of a comedy movie. Inside the review, the reviewer says you will laugh hard several times. The reviewer then goes on to give the movie a bad overall review. So, a comedy film is funny but is considered a failure? If I go to a comedy, I am going because I want to laugh. If I laugh a lot and hard isn’t that a success? Does it matter if the overall story is great? Are people really going to Neighbors 2 because they wanted a deep, meaningful story? Do reviewers even understand why people go to the movies?  There are some movies in every genre that are dependent on a strong story, excellent acting, score, etc in order to achieve what they are attempting. Some movies, like Neighbors 2, are just meant to make you laugh. Did it make you laugh? Mission accomplished. Stop reading so deeply into things that aren’t meant to be deep. Same goes for TV shows. Also, once you no longer like the medium you should probably stop reviewing it.

Performing the Beatles, Prince, Queen, etc : I was already tired of hearing people opine that people should never attempt to cover the Beatles and was reaching that point with people saying the same about Queen. Now, I’ve already had someone on the Today Show(who makes sure to mention regularly that Prince was a friend) say the same thing in response to the Madonna and Stevie Wonder performance last night. There are a lot of bad cover out there. I agree on that point. My feelings, though, are if you are doing a tribute or making the song your own, then cover away. Most will never be as good as the original, but no one is un-coverable.

Rain: Hot take: I’m tired of it. Please stop.

Tater Takes on the Fall TV Schedule

The four broadcast networks have revealed their fall schedules. I will go night by night and discuss the offerings and tell you what I will watch. This is only for the big 4 (ABC,CBS,FOX,NBC and CW) any cable shows will be highlighted in my much anticipated(by no one) fall “What’s on TV Tonight” series.


ABC: Once Upon a Time, Secrets and Lies, Quantico

CBS: NCIS: Los Angeles, Madam Secretary, Elementary

FOX: The Simpsons, Son of Zorn, Family Guy, Last Man on Earth

NBC: Sunday Night Football

Nothing great here. We do like Madam Secretary, but that’s about it. Luckily, Walking Dead will start in October and Game of Thrones and Fear the Walking Dead in spring. Otherwise, football is the only real choice for the night.I used to watch Elementary, but got bored with it pretty quick.


ABC:  Dancing with the Has-Beens, Conviction

CBS: Big Bang, Kevin Can Wait, 2 Broke Girls, Odd Couple, Scorpion(Big Bang to Thursdays after football. Kevin moves to 8 Man with a Plan premieres at 8:30)

FOX: Gotham, Lucifer

NBC: The Voice, Timeless

CW: Supergirl, Jane the Virgin

A little better than Sunday night. We like Supergirl and hopefully the move to CW will help it. We love Lucifer a lot more than expected. It’s a fun show. Conviction has Hayley Atwell, so I will definitely watch it. I will admit that I like Kevin James and Matt LeBlanc, so since there are no DVR conflict issues I will give Kevin and Man with a Plan a try. I’ve always had a soft spot for sitcoms.


ABC: The Middle, American Housewife, Fresh off the Boat, Real O’Neals, SHIELD

CBS: NCIS, Bull, NCIS: New Orleans

FOX: Brooklyn 99, New Girl, Scream Queens

NBC: The Voice, This is Us, Chicago Fire

CW: Flash, No Tomorrow

Really good comedy night. The Middle, Fresh off the Boat, The Real O’Neals and Brooklyn 99 are all very good. I also love the Flash. It’s the best superhero show on TV right now. My wife watches the NCIS’s o that take TV/DVR space and makes me watch The Middle on demand. New shows don’t interest me at all. Do we really want a Michael Weatherly headlining show based on Dt Phil? I think not.


ABC: The Goldbergs, Speechless, Modern Family, Black-ish, Designated Survivor

CBS: Survivor, Criminal Minds, Code Black

FOX: Lethal Weapon, Empire

NBC: Blindspot, Law and Order SVU, Chicago PD

CW: Arrow, Frequency

I still love Survivor and it is the only show I insist on watching live(I live tweet it). Modern Family is still consistently good. I’ve heard good things about the other comedies, but have never actually watched them. Not sure about Speechless. I think Code Black might be the best medical show since ER. Arrow is another very good superhero show. DC does TV well. I liked the Lethal Weapon and Frequency movies enough to watch at least one episode of the series. Also, Damon Wayans as Murtagh could be really good.


ABC: Grey’s Anatomy, Notorious, How to Get Away With Murder

CBS: Football and then Big Bang, The Great Indoors, Mom, Life in Pieces, Pure Genius

FOX: Rosewood, Bones

NBC: football and then Superstore, The Good Place, Chicago Med, The Blacklist

CW: Legends of Tomorrow, Supernatural

I still love Grey’s so I will be watching it. I’ve stuck with Bones all these years, so I will watch the final season. We love Superstore and I’m very happy it was renewed. Legends of Tomorrow season 1 was a mess and I still haven’t watched a lot of it, but I read about the ending and I am hopeful about season 2. We still watch Blacklist, but I’m getting a little bored with it. I might try The Good Place because I like Kristen Bell and Ted Danson.


ABC: Last Man Standing, Dr Ken, Shark Tank, 20/20

CBS: Macgyver, Hawaii 50, Blue Bloods

FOX: Hell’s Kitchen, The Exorcist

NBC: Caught on Camera, Grimm, Dateline

CW: Vampire Diaries, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

Because I am old and boring I am home to watch TV on Friday nights. I’m sad that Amazing Race is only  midseason show this year. I still like watching it. We do like Last Man Standing and Grimm. My wife watched 5-0 and I watch Blue Bloods. My daughter watched Vampire Diaries. I will probably give the new Macgyver a shot, but I am not hopeful.


Football and a collection of “encore” showings. Nothing to see here.

Overall, it is not an exciting schedule. None of the new shows sound like must sees. Good shows like Agent Carter, Galavant and Limitless are gone. Amazing Race, The 100 and iZombie are held until midseason. I’m hoping I will be pleasantly surprised by some new stuff or that the new midseason shows will be good. I will have review of new shows with the “What’s on TV” series in the fall.


Tater Remembers The Purple One

Yesterday, I headed out at 1 to get my $1 sub at Jimmy Johns. As I stood in the line, I did what I always do and looked to my phone for entertainment. I went to Facebook and saw a post from Michael Ausiello about the death of Prince. It was reported first by TMZ and as much as I argue with people that TMZ is now a legitimate news source, I held out hope that it was wrong and I would discover it was a hoax. Unfortunately, as I stood in line(it was a long line) it was confirmed that Prince was really dead. I’m still stunned by the news as I watch the tributes and listen to the Prince tribute channel on Sirius.

I can’t remember the first time I ever heard a Prince song. I recall hearing the songs Delirious, 1999 and Little Red Corvette and loving them, but it wasn’t until Purple Rain that I really became a Prince fan. I had the Purple Rain cassette and listened to it a lot all the way through college. I remember the first time I saw the movie on VHS. There wasn’t a bad song on the album. I know most people love the songs Purple Rain and Let’s Go Crazy(and I do as well) but my favorites were The Beautiful Ones and I Would Die 4 U. I also enjoyed listening to Darling Nikki because I knew people like Tipper Gore hated it. While I was a kid who liked a variety of music, I generally listened to more of the hair band stuff, but I loved Prince. His was the type of music that could appeal to everyone. I was a great example of that. While people make fun of the movie Under the Cherry Moon, Parade was another album I loved. I also owned the cassette for that one and listened to it over and over again and again, I loved every song on the album. I loved Kiss, but again loved lesser known ones like Anotherloverholeinyohead and Sometimes it Snows in April more. I have not loved a lot of his newer stuff as much, but The Gold Standard has made its way in to my playlist a lot recently.  As I moved on to listening to more pop punk stuff I had forgotten how great his music was. Listening to the tribute station today reminded me of how much I loved it. I’m sad that he is gone and that I never went to see him in concert. I don’t think I will let another icon’s concert pass me by because of price or inconvenience. You never know when it might be the last time you have the chance.

I was going to spend some time ranting about the people who have emerged to complain that we care about his death and not the death of x. Or the people who think it’s good that he’s dead because they were offended by his Baltimore concert. Or the people asking if he had AIDS like that matters at all. I could spend a lot of time telling them what I think of them and I might still do that at some point, but instead I am going to go for a walk and listen to some more Prince. RIP

Tater’s Takes on Odds and Ends

Flying While Arab –A student was recently removed from a Southwest flight after another passenger heard him speaking Arabic. Just another instance of judging others because they aren’t like us. Best case scenario is that this random other passenger speaks Arabic and actually heard him say something threatening. Most likely scenario is that an Islamaphobe heard Arabic and got scared. I would rather fly with the student than with someone who panics because they heard another language. Grow up people.

Cry Baby Trump:  Anyone who knows anything about politics or had paid any attention to the  presidential race this year has known for months that a candidate needs a specific number of delegates or there could be a brokered convention. Anyone who knows politics knows this could lead to the delegates choosing anyone as the nominee even if they never actually ran for the nomination. Now that it appears that Trump may not get the delegate he needs he is crying that the system isn’t fair and that they are stealing the nomination from him. This is the way the system works. Maybe it isn’t the best system, but it is the way it is and if you paid attention you knew this going in. Crying about it now is immature and ridiculous. Grow up.

Do do, don’t don’t:  I see a lot of posts from religious people who are full of don’ts. Don’t drink, don’t use profanity, don’t let your kids read books with s-e-x in them, don’t this, don’t that. I can recall going to library conference sessions where they talk about signage and they warn against posting a lot of “don’t” lists because you want people to feel welcome. They aren’t saying get rid of the rules, they are just saying maybe don’t sound so negative and don’t lead with the don’ts. I would say this could also be said for the church Focus on the do’s and not the don’ts. When asked about commandments(which, btw, don’t mention any of the above) he didn’t go to a list of don’ts. He went to a short list of do’s. Do love God with all your heart. Do love people. Short and simple and if you do these it will generally lead to not doing the don’ts from the commandments given in the Old Testament. We tend to focus on the don’ts and not so much on the do’s. I think we would all be better off focusing on the do’s. Love sounds like a good way to go.

What the Duck?

Since the duck guy was back in the news recently…

The World's Common Tater

Yesterday in Facebook trending topics I found articles about the guy from Duck Dynasty speaking at an event. During the speech, he told a story which was basically the plot of a snuff film about an atheist family being raped and murdered. I’m not even sure what point he was trying to make with the story. Non-Christians don’t know that murder and rape is wrong? Non-Christians deserve to be murdered and raped? Christians are safe from murder and rape? If anyone has a clue what exactly his “snuff parable” means, please let me know.

What I do know is that this is not the person Christians should be holding up as an example. We spend so much time talking about doing what Jesus would do. Jesus loved. Jesus healed. Jesus taught us to love our enemies. To do unto others as we would have them do unto us. He ate…

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Tater’s Take on the North Carolina and Mississippi Laws

So, I’m starting this post not really knowing exactly what I plan to write. I’ve had some stuff pop in my head this week, but not enough for a full post. I really need to start taking notes through the week. I also dreamed I wrote a really good blog post this week. Apparently I’m a much better writer in my dreams. edit: turns out I’m writing about one topic. Keeping this here, because I really didn’t know where it was going when I started. Edit #2: I knew I was against the laws. I jut didn’t know the whole post would be on the subject.

One thing I’ve been thinking about this week are the new laws in North Carolina and Mississippi that basically legalize discrimination. Imagine these laws, but replace LGBTQ with African-American, white, Christian, etc. Actually, I will help you with that:

“It would violate my religious beliefs to be forced to serve African American customers”

“I don’t believe in interracial marriage and should not be forced to bake a cake for them”

“As an atheist it is my right to refuse service to Christians”

Now, I know there are people who will say they would be OK with that, but I find it hard to believe that the people who believe someone saying “Happy Holidays” is religious persecution would be OK with the third quote.

Also, it is not violation of your rights to be asked to bake a cake for someone. It would be a violation of your rights if you were told someone else’s religion prevented you from marrying the person you love or if you were forced to marry someone you didn’t want to marry.

Also, I find it interesting that a lot of the people who are OK with refusing service to the LGBTQ community are the same people who are furious that businesses ban guns from the premises. I guess their slogan is “Guns, not gays”. Seems weird to me. Personally, if given a choice I would rather be in a restaurant with a member of the LGBTQ community than a random person with a gun. I’m pretty sure LGBTQ people have never been used in a mass killing. Someone can correct me if I’m wrong.

And, finally, the whole bathroom thing. We are being told that allowing transgender people to use the restroom of the gender with which they identify is dangerous to our kids. Personally, I would rather my kid be in the restroom with a transgender person than a US politician.

Senator pleaded guilty, reportedly after bathroom stall incident

Jon Hinson Gets Caught in the Men’s Room

Florida state Rep. Bob Allen guilty in bathroom-sex case

I really don’t get how anyone can claim these laws are OK. Legal discrimination is not OK. I thought this had been determined a while back. Do we really want to move the country backward?

Lessons I’m Trying to Learn

In an effort to be a calmer, less angry person I am trying to learn several lessons that I think will make me a better, as opposed to a bitter, person.

  1. I Don’t Care: Obviously, this doesn’t mean be an asshole who doesn’t care about anyone but themselves(more on them later) but more about not caring about stuff that is annoying, ridiculous and just plain stupid, but in the long run don’t really matter. I care too much about things that really shouldn’t matter to me. I need to learn to ignore, or maybe laugh at, the stupidity in the world instead of letting it get to me.
  2. Ignore the Apples: Apples here actually mean assholes. Apples is the result of someone’s amusing auto correct. There are people in the world who are just not nice people. They care only about themselves and go through life not worrying about how their actions affect others. Some of them pretend to be your friend, but stab you in the back first chance they get. Some of them don’t even bother to pretend. Some of them might be too dumb to realize they are acting like assholes. They might be the worst ones of all. They are hard to ignore, especially when their actions are affecting you. So, I will vow to spend as little time as possible with these people and only deal with them when I have to. You can’t avoid them all, but you can limit exposure.
  3. Don’t Drive Angry: I have a serious issue with anger while driving. I don’t get to the point that I will start a fight with other drivers, but I get way too angry when people do dumb things on the road. Music doesn’t help, listening to books don’t help. I have no idea how to fix this one, but I’m going to try. As long as they are not making the road dangerous, their stupidity will not keep me from getting home. Just relax and enjoy the drive(I hate driving).
  4. Put the Phone Down(said in Nic Cage Voice) – I complain to my daughter when we are watching a TV show or movie because she is staring at her phone, but I do it as well. I don’t spend the entire time on the phone,  but I glance at Facebook, Twitter, sports scores etc. way too much while watching TV and movies. I also spend time doing this when I should be reading. This also causes some of the above issues because social media is full of apples and stupidity. Why am I willingly reading this stuff? I, on the other hand, am interesting and hilarious. Please continue to read my blog, Facebook and Twitter.
  5. Laugh more: Unfortunately, funny people like me are not supposed to laugh at ourselves and I’m the funniest person I know(and the most humble) so finding laughs can be hard. There are some TV shows that are funny, but it’s not the same as laughter with friends. I do have some funny friends, but we tend to focus on 1 & 2 above more than just having fun. I need to have more fun.

I’m sure there are more, but they are hard to remember when you frantically type these things out on your lunch break. If you know me in real life and see me doing this stuff wrong call me out on it.