Wednesday Reads: Mambo Italiano Muthafukkerz…

1091f45df98358d48611af8ac49be2dbGood Morning

Well, another storm is hitting here in Banjoville. The weather people are saying we should get a total of 6 to 12 inches of snow when it is all said and done.

Down south things are a lot worse…if you have not seen the big headlines over at Huffington Post or Drudge, take a look at this:

Via Drudge

HISTORIC ICE STORM UNFOLDS IN SOUTH...
GEORGIA WARNED: 'CATASTROPHIC'...
SEEN FROM SPACE...
Hundreds of flights cancelled...
Roads deserted...
Panicked Shoppers Fight Over Food...
Nor'easter Could Be 'Biggest Of Season'...
'Snow Rage' Afflicts Storm-Weary Locals...

And HuffPo

SOUTH BRACES FOR ‘CATASTROPHIC’ STORM

Deadly ice and snow storm bears down on U.S. South | Reuters

The storm could be “a catastrophic event” of “historical proportions,” the National Weather Service office in Peachtree City, Georgia, said of the latest blast of wintry weather to hit the region.232ee103789d0f5b43c9f78b0272a458

Conditions were expected to worsen overnight, with up to an inch of ice predicted in parts of Georgia and central South Carolina.

Two to 6 inches of snow fell in north Georgia on Tuesday, with another 5 to 9 inches expected by Thursday morning, said National Weather Service meteorologist Dan Darbe.

But Darbe said ice was the bigger worry, with a quarter to three-quarters of an inch expected in the area that includes metropolitan Atlanta.

[…]

Officials were quick to make plans for dealing with the weather after being criticized for inadequate preparation before a storm two weeks ago. That storm paralyzed Atlanta area roads and forced more than 11,000 students in Alabama to spend the night at their schools.

Oh you bet your ass they were ready this time…

0211 Luckovich cartoon: Drift away | Mike Luckovich

021114-toon-luckovich-ed

In other news, House Approves Higher Debt Limit Without Condition – NYTimes.com

f827bc9e35771965e33b76c555d00cdcEnding three years of brinkmanship in which the threat of a devastating default on the nation’s debt was used to wring conservative concessions from President Obama, the House on Tuesday voted to raise the government’s borrowing limit until March 2015, without any conditions.

The vote — 221 to 201 — relied almost entirely on Democrats in the Republican-controlled House to carry the measure and represented the first debt ceiling increase since 2009 that was not attached to other legislation. Only 28 Republicans voted yes, and only two Democrats voted no.

I guess you could say hell froze over?

2440946b7e4be9ef6ce9a7a6cd0d3a66Simply by holding the vote, Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio effectively ended a three-year Tea Party-inspired era of budget showdowns that had raised the threat of default and government shutdowns, rattled economic confidence and brought serious scrutiny from other nations questioning Washington’s ability to govern. In the process, though, Mr. Boehner also set off a series of reprisals from fellow Republican congressmen and outside groups that showcased the party’s deep internal divisions.

“He gave the president exactly what he wanted, which is exactly what the Republican Party said we did not want,” said a Republican representative, Tim Huelskamp of Kansas, who last year unsuccessfully tried to rally enough support to derail Mr. Boehner’s re-election as speaker. “It’s going to really demoralize the base.”

e6cca4e1507cba937018309733ea71a1The NYT article goes on to say it was a victory for the President and the Dems…but considering the shit we have dealt with the last few years, and those poor people who will be dealing with lower food stamp funds, how can that be a victory?

Meanwhile in West Virginia, another spill is causing the citizens grief: ‘Significant’ slurry spill blackens Kanawha creek

More than 100,000 gallons of coal slurry poured into an eastern Kanawha County stream Tuesday in what officials were calling a “significant spill” from a Patriot Coal processing facility.

Emergency officials and environmental inspectors said roughly six miles of Fields Creek had been blackened and that a smaller amount of the slurry made it into the Kanawha River near Chesapeake.

83a0b790e2e248e98e6d1edde44bf60a“This has had significant, adverse environmental impact to Fields Creek and an unknown amount of impact to the Kanawha River,” said Secretary Randy Huffman of the state Department of Environmental Protection. “This is a big deal, this is a significant slurry spill.”

“When this much coal slurry goes into the stream, it wipes the stream out.”

That is disgusting. I don’t think the people of West Virginia will ever be able to drink the water again.

For a little laugh, here is my favorite actor of today…I know the reason for the video is not funny, it is disgusting, but of all the other “black actors doing commercials” it is good to see Sammy call the asshole out:

Samuel Jackson goes nuclear on reporter for confusing him with Laurence Fishburne – Salon.com

Local TV stations have a reputation for goofy unprofessionalism and quirky hiccups.  This segment at KTLA in Los Angeles is something so much worse. Veteran entertainment reporter Sam Rubin begins his interview by asking about Jackson’s Super Bowl commercial, and things get real ugly real quick.

Samuel Jackson goes nuclear on reporter for confusing him with Laurence Fishburne

“What Super Bowl commercial?” responds a flabbergasted Jackson.  ”See, you’re as crazy as the people on Twitter. I’m not Laurence Fishburne!” (Fishburne reprised his role as Morpheus in “The Matrix” for a Kia spot.) “We don’t all look alike!”

He then goes on to list other black actors in commercials, who he is not.

8c717a1dd36b6aae4951ef50a11320b6Of course, the news reporter is not the only one who was tacky as hell, as you can “hear” from the video at the link:

Just as uncomfortable as Rubin’s attempts to brush off the blunder by saying, “Really my big mistake … let’t talk about ‘Robocop,’” are the hoots and howls coming from Rubin’s peers who clearly don’t get how terribly offensive this “mistake” is.  Rubin later apologized and claimed he was referring to a commercial for Jackson’s upcoming “Captain America: The Winter Soldier.”  Regardless, the incident (and Jackson’s blunt response) is a reminder of Hollywood’s serious race problem that was starkly evident at the Golden Globes.

You can see the look on Jackson’s face at the end, it really does show how tired he is of all the shit.

I noticed yesterday y’all were talking in the comments about books you were reading, I just started to read this one about cuss words as discussed in this link here:  Here’s the first recorded instance of the F-word in Englishec888f05da4ae0857ec3302f256c8421

And it’s a monk expressing his displeasure at an abbot. In the margins of a guide to moral conduct. Because of course.

Technically, “fuck” appeared two times before this. In 1500, it was used in a satirical poem to describe some friars. In that case, nothing like “fuck” was actually written out. Instead, the word was hidden in a code. And in 1513, it appeared in a Scottish poem as “fukkit.”

Here's the first recorded instance of the F-word in English

But for English’s first use, we’ve got a dissatisfied 1528 monk. He’s written “O D fuckin abbot.” Melissa Mohr, author of Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing, says this “fuck” could be either literal or metaphorical:

a35537fa19bb5c218d174c664d71b9a6It is difficult to know whether the annotator intended “fucking” to mean “having sex,” as in “that guy is doing too much fucking for someone who is supposed to be celibate,” or whether he used it as an intensifier, to convey his extreme dismay; if the latter, it anticipates the first recorded use by more than three hundred years. Either is possible, really—John Burton, the abbot in question, was a man of questionable monastic morals.

So, either this monk was recording his abbot’s sex life or he was the first person to be so angry that only “fuck” could convey it’s scope.

Did you all see the big joint news out of New York and Italy?  I’ve got a few articles on this mass arrest from both Italian and US sources:

1cdfa6e0951abf54ce7b61e71e1a944dNdrangheta ‘snatching U.S. Cosa Nostra drug trade’ – GazzettaDelSud

Calabria’s ‘Ndrangheta mafia, once a poor relation of the Sicilian Mafia, has grown in heft and reach thanks to its dominance of the European cocaine trade and is even muscling in on the drug operations of one of Cosa Nostra’s historic five families in New York, investigators said after a major Italian-FBI bust Tuesday. “This was an important operation because we proved that the power of the ‘Ndrangheta now far surpasses that of Cosa Nostra”, Reggio Calabria prosecutor Nicola Gratteri told ANSA from New York after 26 arrests in a probe into a new drug route from Guyana to Europe via the ‘Ndrangheta-infiltrated Calabrian port of Gioia Tauro.

According to the Gazzetta Del Sud, this ‘Ndrangheta Mafia even used Mexican cartels in a joint venture in their set-up to traffic cocaine.

32d48f11ed5ab3975b8c39d2b2614db6As for the US side of the take down: Arrests in New York and Italy Thwart Mob Drug Scheme, Authorities Say – NYTimes.com

“They put a hundred grams, two hundred grams in each fish” and “it takes a day to defrost and then it takes a day to take out,” Franco Lupoi said, according to prosecutors who say the conversation was recorded by investigators.

On Tuesday, federal authorities announced the arrests of Mr. Lupoi, the owner of a Brooklyn bakery, and six other people in New York on charges that included narcotics trafficking and money laundering and that were the culmination of a two-year undercover F.B.I. investigation. In Italy, the police announced the arrests of 17 people in connection with the investigation.

8e67a16549cf6808c98b6d9a565c7a8bWhat made the case remarkable were not the charges but the defendants’ links to the ’Ndrangheta, the organized crime group based in Calabria that is notorious for kidnappings and for its success importing cocaine into Europe.

More from the LA Times: Italian-U.S. Mafia drug trafficking ring busted, FBI and police say

The FBI and Italian police said they had broken up a global heroin and cocaine trafficking ring Tuesday after stumbling upon a fledgling alliance between a Calabrian Mafia group and associates of New York’s notorious

Twenty-four arrests were made in Italy and the United States after a two-year operation that relied on both wiretaps and an American undercover agent named by investigators as “Jimmy,” who is said to have infiltrated the Gambinos and fooled Italians into believing he was a heroin dealer. Seventeen of the arrests were made in Italy and seven in the United States.

8c0b6ff431fc394939ef5694f77cf6c4Those arrested in the U.S. were arraigned before a federal magistrate in Brooklyn. The men, some of them suspected of being members of the Gambino and Bonanno “families,” were listed as using various street aliases such as “Lello,” “Freddy,” and “Charlie Pepsi.”

I am sure more information will be coming forward, but…

The coordinated sting halted the planned shipment of more than a ton of cocaine from Latin America to Italy in liquid form, smuggled with help from Mexican cartels in coconut and pineapple cans, law enforcement officials said. They put the street value at $1 billion.

One more link…on the additional discovery of ‘Ndrangheta connections with the Far East heroin trade: Gambino, Bonanno family members held in joint US-Italy anti-mafia raid – CNN.com

Raffaele Grassi, head of the Criminal Unit of the Italian State Police, told reporters that the operation demonstrated 8729a9e910772d09d68639720e66b252that the “‘Ndrangheta is one of the strongest organizations in the world in illegal drug trade.”

He cited its sophisticated network of contacts and its ability to adapt and find new markets, including “expanding beyond Italian borders.”

Grassi said that historically, the Gambino family had had ties with the Sicilian Mafia, Cosa Nostra. But their involvement in the illegal traffic of heroin, known as the “Pizza Connection,” was dismantled or severely curtailed in the 1980s, he said, and they are now trading mainly cocaine.

36ffef735f803acdb7b518b6a6be3800The latest operation, according to Grassi and FBI officials, shows that the mafia families of the “new continent” are still seeking and relying on “old country” connections — which is why investigators dubbed the operation “New Bridge.”

According to Grassi, the Italian-American mafia families “need this new bridge to connect and support the traffic of cocaine.”

While the existence of a connection between the Calabrian mafia and U.S. mafia families has been well known, Tuesday’s operation shows its great strength and reach, investigators said.

One of the more alarming discoveries to emerge from the operation was evidence that ‘Ndrangheta has also reached out to the Far East in the heroin trade, another investigator said.

While on the subject of the Mafia, 10 Real-Life Inspirations For Characters In The Godfather – Listverse

It’s one of the immutable laws of nature: You’re channel surfing, and there, between some cooking show and an infomercial, you come upon The Godfather. Even though you own the deluxe Blu-Ray DVD box set with three weeks’ worth of special features, you are glued to that station until the credits roll. And if it’s the first in a Godfather marathon, your day is shot. f3f4d36dad5c94c3549ef3e8bd4f06b6You’re not moving, except to warm up some frozen lasagna between Godfather 2 and Godfather 3.

The Godfather is a classic of American cinema, and Godfather Part 2 is considered by some an even better movie. This story of the patriarch of a New York crime family, and his son who takes over the “family business,” is largely based on Mario Puzo’s novel of the same name, with director Francis Ford Coppola and Puzo producing new material for the films.

Puzo based many of the characters on the real underworld players he heard about growing up and working in New York City.

That thing about getting stuck watching the trilogy on TV, it is so true…it just happened to my mom and me last week, and it was on one of those channels with the commercials.e75c78c0ba7781f147ec6225ad95e9cb (So you know how annoying that can be, and how “glued” we were to stick it out for the three full movies.)

In wrapping this post up, I will end with this tune…a perfect finale to a mob focused post. I know that I have used this song before, but what can I say…

If you gonna be a square
You ain’t a gonna go nowhere
Hey mambo! mambo italiano!
Hey mambo! mambo italiano!

Rosemary Clooney – Mambo Italiano Lyrics

Have a wonderful day, and if you are in the storm’s wake, please stay safe and warm.

And be sure to share with us, what is on your reading list today?


74 Comments on “Wednesday Reads: Mambo Italiano Muthafukkerz…”

  1. bostonboomer says:

    OMG, what a fantastic post! I’m already cheered up, despite the bad news.

    I hope you are keeping your kids home today, JJ. I wouldn’t want to be in GA today, but it would be better than being in WV! Stay safe and warm.

    The storm will hit us tomorrow, and they’re saying it’s a classic nor’easter. I plan to stay inside till it’s over. We’re supposed to get 8-10 inches. That will be piled on top of the 15 or so inches from the last storm, very little of which has melted because it has been so cold.

    Love the Luckovich cartoon, the Samuel L. Jackson story, and the history “f&ckin’ Abbot.”!!

    • bostonboomer says:

      This link from the post is crazy. Typical New Yorkers…..

      ‘Snow Rage’ Pits Storm-Weary Residents Against Plow Drivers Just Trying To Do Jobs

      Eric Ramirez, a snow plow driver on Long Island, said an irate man went so far as to rack a shotgun Sunday and threaten to shoot him because he was piling snow in front of the man’s Manorhaven home.

      “I see the guy is coming across the street; is coming to me. I say, ‘Hi.’ He talked to me,” Ramirez said, adding the man responded by saying he was coming to shoot him.

      Raymond Hounigringer, 48, was charged with menacing in the incident.

      • RalphB says:

        Bet that guy wasn’t dressed as a banana 😉

      • Pat Johnson says:

        I often feel that way when the plows dump a wall of snow at the end of my driveway!

        Well, not homicidal but very, very upset no matter how unavoidable.

      • janicen says:

        Back when my daughter was a toddler and my husband was working out of town 5 days a week, the Richmond, VA area got 18 inches of snow. Of course, everything was closed one day, but I knew I had to get out the next day to go to work so there was nothing for it, I had to go out and shovel the driveway while my daughter was down for a nap. So I did it. It took a long time and just as I tossed the last shovel full of snow onto a snowbank, I saw the plow coming. My throat tightened up because I almost started to cry but then I just resigned myself to what was about to happen. Just as he was about to get to my driveway, the snow plow driver lifted his blade, went around my driveway, honked and waved. I’ve never wanted to hug a snow plow driver so much in my life. 🙂

    • RalphB says:

      Love this post! Stay warm and, like BB said, keep your kids home. I hope the storm isn’t as bad as they expect for you or BB. Still freezing at my house but it’s supposed to warm up today. Yay. Now if it will only do it.

    • Pat Johnson says:

      My biggest fear is losing power since it was only two years ago we in WM went without for up to 10 days.

      • janicen says:

        They have been warning us here in Virginia that power outages are a distinct possibility this time. Be sure to have all of your devices charged.

        • Fannie says:

          One of the big reasons for losing power will be the trees. In California they make people and agencies trim and cut trees, because they will hang over, and fall on power lines. In California it required because of fires. They have crews who paid to walk those power lines, and check for any risk from falling trees. This is how you “create jobs”, and that should be a good paying job.

    • Fannie says:

      Yeah, JJ, fabulous……….twirled to the kitchen for Italian Omelet that I made with mushrooms, onions, garlic, tomato, basil, parsley with 3 egg whites, grated parmesan, and heated up that fry pan with olive oil and some red crushed peppers, then heated up 1/4 cup marinara sauce to go on top of the omelet. Small bowl of fresh fruit, except fresh pineapple (it’s 5.99 lb), so I went with Dole chunks.

      I am good to go for the day.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Yummy!

        I like my omelets with browned leftover potatoes, two eggs, a little cheese in the middle and lots of salsa on top.

    • Thanks BB, the kids are home today too.
      We’ve had snow or ice pellets since last night, and this is expected to continue until tomorrow.

      Things are bad enough that the DOT trucks are slipping off the roads: Two DOT dump trucks slide off N. Ga. roads in icy weather | AccessNorthGa

      “One of the trucks was on State Route 60 – Thompson Bridge Road – just north of State Route 136 [in Hall County] and the other truck was on State Route 115 in White County,” said Pope.

      Pope said neither driver was injured and both vehicles were removed from the accident sites. She also said materials being used to treat the roads were recovered and will be used as DOT continues to work on ice and snow-laden roads.

      “DOT dump trucks are specifically equipped to drive in these conditions, DOT drivers are trained to drive in these conditions, yet our folks are still having trouble,” said Pope.

      “So we want folks to realize that if our vehicles are having trouble, then your normal passenger vehicle is going to have even more trouble.”

      Some pictures of Blairsville: http://www.accessnorthga.com/photopop.php?n=271058#124343

  2. Pat Johnson says:

    Speaking of books: I just read “LIfe After Life” by Kate Atkinson and it was the most confusing, ridiculous book I have ever purchased. More so since it was one of those that was listed as one of the Top Ten for 2013!

    For anybody contemplating picking this one up, beware. I have no idea what this author had in mind when putting this one on paper but it was one of the most senseless stories ever IMHO.

    Not sure who is reviewing these books but some of those that have been feted with honors lately are some of the dumbest stories ever to see print.

    A good story is a good story regardless of who writes it but lately some of the material I have read is pure crapola.

    I guess it is time to return to the classics if this is what is considered the “best”.

    • RalphB says:

      Sycamore Row by John Grisham is a pretty good book. He returns to Ford County, the site of his original novel A Time to Kill, and builds a darned good story with some of the original characters.

  3. bostonboomer says:

    Our weather forecast: Nor’Easter To Be A ’3 Commute Nightmare’

    BOSTON (CBS) – “Everything but the kitchen sink.” That’s a perfect way to describe what is headed our way.

    This storm is going to be an absolute mess. Rain, sleet, snow, wind, flooding. You name it we will see it on Thursday. Some areas will be left with slop and giant puddles while others will be blanketed in copious amounts of heavy, wet snow.

    • Pat Johnson says:

      I wouldn’t be surprised to see all schools shut down for both Thursday and Friday. Monday begins the Feb break so they probably wouldn’t think twice about closing them in advance just to avoid the traffic that is sure to be one huge mess.

    • RalphB says:

      That sounds horrible. Take care up there!

  4. bostonboomer says:

    Christian School Faulted for Halting Abuse Study

    For decades, students at Bob Jones University who sought counseling for sexual abuse were told not to report it because turning in an abuser from a fundamentalist Christian community would damage Jesus Christ. Administrators called victims liars and sinners.

  5. RalphB says:

    Ted Cruz must feel abandoned, though I’m sure he’ll grift lots of money from this.

    tpm: Senate To Pass Debt Limit Hike Today

    Senate leaders have reached an agreement aimed at wrapping up passage of the House-passed “clean” debt limit increase on Wednesday, according to Democratic and Republican leadership sources.

    They have scheduled two back-to-back votes starting at 1:45 p.m. First there’ll be a “cloture” motion to advance the bill, at a 60-vote threshold, and then final passage, requiring 51 votes.

    “We are confident that we’ll be well over 60 votes,” said a Democratic leadership aide. “Once cloture is invoked, time will be yielded.”

  6. Holy Shit! National Guard in Banjoville Downtown:

    • janicen says:

      Hah! Looks like your gov doesn’t want to mess this up again!

    • bostonboomer says:

      And there’s hardly any snow yet. Deal isn’t taking any chances this time!

      • There is ice, and snow plows have gone off the road up here, so the weather is worse than it looks.

        We also have only one snow truck for the whole county so it sucks ass.

        Oh, that is not our truck btw…that is White county

        • NW Luna says:

          Ice is way worse than snow, imnsho. Drivers have no control when driving on ice without real traction devices, like chains. 4-wheel is no substitute.

          Makes me thankful I live in a temperate (if usually damp) area. We pulled out of our 20-deg weather over the weekend, got a mere 2-3″ of snow which got rained away in about a day as things warmed. We’re back in the 40s and rainy. Weirdly, and unpredicted, today there’s been a few hrs of sunshine — and it’s my day off! Nature’s blessing.

    • Fannie says:

      Wow, they should have been out trimming and cutting trees, so you don’t lose power.

  7. dakinikat says:

    Jury just got back on Nagin trial. Guilty on 20 counts!

  8. janicen says:

    First flakes falling in Richmond, VA area. It starts.

  9. dakinikat says:

    https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/ghostery/mlomiejdfkolichcflejclcbmpeaniij?hl=en

    Software that tracks which corporations are gathering metadata on you and what they tend to do with it … the real threat to your privacy.

  10. RalphB says:

    Yup… http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/sarah-palin-birthday-021214

    It’s Sarah Palin’s Birthday! Light the ceremonial malaprop and quit your job! Dance the Dance of the Mole People!

  11. RalphB says:

  12. NW Luna says:

    A controversial bill in Spain to end women’s right to abortion on demand is set to be passed after an opposition challenge was defeated in parliament. ….

    Opinion polls suggest up to 80% of Spaniards, including practising Catholics, believe the draft law is unnecessary. ….

    Abortion on demand was introduced in Spain under a law passed by the Socialists in 2010. The same law provides for the right to abort up to 22 weeks, if the mother’s health is at risk or the foetus shows signs of severe deformities.

    The new bill would reverse the changes of 2010, only allowing abortion in cases of rape or where women can prove that having a child would pose a severe risk to their physical or mental health. ….

    “Inequality will grow, [and] Spanish women will once again be divided into two groups: those that can travel to a neighbouring country and undergo a safe abortion and those that cannot.”

  13. RalphB says:

    This guy is the dean of Dallas sportscasters. Been there forever.

    • RalphB says:

      You beat a woman and drag her down a flight of stairs, pulling her hair out by the roots? You’re the fourth guy taken in the NFL draft. You kill people while driving drunk? That guy’s welcome. Players caught in hotel rooms with illegal drugs and prostitutes? We know they’re welcome. Players accused of rape and pay the woman to go away? You lie to police, trying to cover up a murder? We’re comfortable with that.

      You love another man? Well, now you’ve gone too far!

      • ANonOMouse says:

        The guy did a great job of pointing out things that should have been issues for fans of the NFL, but aren’t. I’ve read that the responses to his commentary have been very positive which proves that many of us already knew what he had the courage to say on air. More power to him

        • RalphB says:

          Dale Hanson has gotten near universal support and I imagine a lot of people are quite surprised at that, maybe including him. More power to him indeed!

  14. bostonboomer says:

    How did JJ do? Is it bad down in GA? I’ve been off the grid for hours.

    • NW Luna says:

      Glad to hear you’re back on, BB.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Sorry, I shouldn’t have said “off the grid” I was just hanging out with my nephews all afternoon and evening. Our storm starts tomorrow early morning. They are still saying 6-10 inches and high winds.

    • NW Luna says:

      Current conditions, from one of JJ’s GA links above:

      Tens of thousands of Georgians have lost electricity in a storm that dumped snow and freezing rain on a large swath of the state.

      Hope you and family are safe and warm, JJ!

  15. bostonboomer says:

    Look at the list of Sid Caesar’s comedy writers:

    Sid Caesar was 27 when he launched Your Show of Shows — TV’s first and greatest live comedy. His writers became comedy royalty: Carl Reiner, Neil Simon, his brother Danny, Woody Allen, Larry Gelbart, and Mel Brooks.”

    • RalphB says:

      Funny, funny people and the talent ran so damn deep. Thinking of Sid Ceasar, Jackie Gleason, George Burns and Gracie Allen always brings big smiles. Johnny Carson was the perfect host for late night TV. They may be the greatest generation for more reasons than WWII.