Musings, opinions, observations, questions, and random thoughts on island life, Fernandina Beach and more

Musings, opinions, observations, questions, and random thoughts on island life, Fernandina Beach and more

Study Says Bart Simpson Was Mistaken When He Said “Don’t Have A Cow, Man!”

bart_dudeA recent study by Carnegie Mellon University is enough to give even the most passionate vegetarian environmentalist heartburn.

“Step away from that lettuce,” say the CMU academics because they claim a diet rich in fruit and vegetables could actually be more harmful to the environment than consuming a steak. Lettuce is “over three times worse in greenhouse gas emissions than eating bacon,” according to researchers from Carnegie Mellon, who analyzed the impact per calorie of different foods in terms of energy cost, water use and emissions.

Published in the “Environment Systems and Decisions Journal”, the study goes against the grain of environmentalist’s calls for folks to quit eating meat to curb climate change. Researchers did not argue against the idea people should be eating less meat, or the fact that livestock contributes to an enormous proportion of global emissions – up to 51 per cent according to some studies.

But they found that eating only the recommended “healthier” foods prescribed in recent advice from the US Department of Agriculture increased a person’s impact on the environment across all three factors – even when overall calorie intake was reduced.

The experts examined how growing, processing and transporting food; sales and service; and household storage and use all take a toll on the environment for different foods.

Paul Fischbeck, study co-author and CMU’s professor of social and decisions sciences, said: “Lots of common vegetables require more resources per calorie than you would think.

“Eggplant, celery and cucumbers look particularly bad when compared to pork or chicken,” he said.

So for the sake of the planet smack that carrot out of the hand of the next person you see munching one at the Mustard Seed.


But These Fruits & Vegetables Are Good For You, The Planet, And The Economy: Gerald Byrd, who has run a fruit and vegetable stand on South 14th Street for many, many years, may be one of the nicest and most honest people I’ve met on Amelia Island with his gentle demeanor and soft spoken manner. The one-time U.S. Marine, has even suggested I don’t buy certain items because, in his opinion they weren’t ripe enough or too ripe and he’s even tossed in an extra banana or carrot or two just because. Gerald has been very helpful and now he needs help. He recently suffered a severe heart attack and major vein surgery and is battling an incision infection while his business is being manned by family members. In addition lousy weather in the Carolinas hindered the shipment of produce financially putting a crimp in the operation. So if you need, or even if you don’t need a few pieces of fresh fruit or vegetables, turn off your computer right now and hop in the car and get over the Gerald’s stand and buy something to help out a guy who has helped all of us out over the years. Don’t just sit there…go! Now!


Hey Guys, Tired Of $25 Haircuts? If you local guys are tired of spending $25 or more for a haircut that doesn’t look any better than the one your mom paid 50 cents for when you were a kid, then get yourself over to Swayze Hair Design in the Wal-Mart Shopping Center between South 14th and South 8th Streets and ask for Lisa Smith, who’ll give you a $10 cut that’ll leave you feeling like a million bucks. You won’t get a fancy spa atmosphere or be offered a glass of wine or beer, but you’ll get a very pretty and personable young Texas gal who won’t talk or cut your ear off, but will ensure that you’ll walk out the door knowing you look a heck of lot better than when you walked in. I’m not sure how long this 10 buck special will last and if I could have, I’d have ordered two or three to go. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining about the more expensive salons, as they offer services that Lisa doesn’t, but if you just want a good haircut, and to chat with a very nice young lady, then call Lisa at 904/634-7630. They’re open every day but Sunday.


Cooking The Books: To celebrate the completion of an eight-year Friends of the Library (FOL) project that has raised almost $2.4 million, local chefs will “cook the books” at the new public library in downtown Fernandina Beach Thursday, February 4 beginning at 6:15 p.m. at its 25 North Fourth Street location. Preparing food inspired by literature, chefs from Amelia Island Culinary Academy, Bar Zin, Café Karibo, Espana, Horizons, Lulu’s at the Thompson House, Nana Teresa’s, Patio Place, Pecan Roll, Ritz Carlton, Salty Pelican, and chef Adam Sears (formerly of Merge) will provide food mentioned in popular books including A Moveable Feast, The Great Gatsby, Like Water for Chocolate, Harry Potter, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, among others. Actors assembled by the Amelia Musical Playhouse will portray literary characters to mingle with the crowd. A glass of wine, and live music by tuxedo-clad piano man John Springer and more is included in the $100 per person price of admission with John alone worth the price of admission. According to Bill Flynn, who spearheaded the FOL project, less than $150,000 is needed to reach the campaign’s $2.4 million goal. I assume books such as Make Room! Make Room on which the movie Soylent Green was based won’t be featured but I wonder if Dr. Seuss’ Green Eggs and Ham are on the menu? Tickets are available at the library or by calling 904/321-6529.


It’s A WHAT? The Fernandina Beach Board of Adjustment voted 3-2 denying a variance that would have allowed the Westrock mill to erect a 50-foot sign along the waterfront explaining what the company does on its 214-acre site. Mill executives said the sign would have instilled pride in their workers as well as satisfy requests from tour boat operators who say curious tourists often ask what the mill is and what it does. I guess tour guides can keep telling folks that it’s a giant water park or the facility where Soylent Green is manufactured.


Eating On The Run: I don’t think I’d care to dine with her, but it would have been interesting to watch as 25-year-old Josseleen Lopez drove a motorized cart through a Wal-Mart in Lecanto, a small town Southwest of Amelia Island near Crystal River, and enjoyed a four course meal complete with wine. According to a recent Associated Press article Ms. Lopez stopped her cart in various aisles long enough to consume sushi, a few mini muffins, cinnamon rolls, most of a rotisserie chicken and a bottle of wine. A store security officer said what she ate and drank came to $32.36, which I figure isn’t bad for everything she got, despite the fact I can’t vouch for the quality of her meal. Since she was broke and high on meth, she was arrested for petit theft and possession of drug paraphernalia and her next meal was probably the jail house special of fried bologna, eggs and gravy.


How Government Dictated Wages Cost Jobs: Wal-Mart announced a couple of weeks ago that it would not build three massive new stores in the poorest areas of Washington, D.C., a decision bemoaned but caused by local politicians who wanted the stores, but whose outrageous leftwing policies not only cost their constituents jobs but access to low priced consumer goods by insisting upon a variety of demands that made it uneconomical for the company to operate there. Wal-Mart executives cited the District’s rising minimum wage, now $11.50 an hour and possibly going to $15 an hour, as well as proposed legislation requiring D.C. employers to pay into a fund for family and medical leave for employees and another to require a minimum number of hours for hourly workers. This all added up resulting in the firm nixing the deal with one executive saying: “How are we going to run the three stores we have, let along build more.” In one area the city had pledged $90 million to make a development around one of the supercenter’s viable, but as a result of inept liberal politicians trying to dictate to the marketplace, D.C. residents that need it the most, lost out on lower priced goods and desperately needed jobs. This end result is one of those rare instances that would make socialist curmudgeon Bernie Sanders smile.


A President Trump Maybe Not Be So Farfetched: Six or seven months ago I didn’t foresee Donald Trump’s surprising lead in the Republican primary polling and never gave him a chance of winning the nomination, but it appears that I was wrong. From what I can determine the main reason for his success so far is that he has tapped into a country-wide vein of anger and frustration with the entire political system that crosses party lines. Another is Trump’s background. Don’t believe for a second that his political opponents in both parties aren’t doing their best to dig up every piece of dirt they possibly can on this man who has upset their political apple cart. So far they’ve come up empty much to the chagrin of NPR and MSNBC commentators as well as reporters at the NY Times, Washington Post, among others. I have yet to read or hear of a single Trump employee or former employee — and there are tens of thousands — who have voiced a complaint about the man…not one. Nor have I heard stories from contractors, business partners or opponents who claim they were cheated, treated badly or bullied. None. In fact, I’ve read stories that claim the opposite, saying Trump is an ethical, smart, generous, fair and kind man to work with and for. Also, he insists that any acts of charity he performs are done without publicity. He has several advantages over his opponents: He knows how to run a large organization, knows where money comes from, and how to budget. He doesn’t give a rip what the media or anyone else says about him so he’s immune from being called racist, homophobic, bombastic, rude, etc. Even the Washington Post‘s liberal columnist Eugene Robinson agrees saying “Some of my fellow liberals are rooting for Trump because they think his ‘abhorrent’ views would doom him in the general election. To them I would say, ‘Be careful what you wish for.’ In a general election Trump would repackage himself for the national electorate with the same uncanny instinct for channeling voters anger used to win the Republican race.” My opinion of the man is rapidly changing and from what I’ve heard and seen so far, a Trump Presidency could be a real possibility, and a refreshing change from what he says are “the incompetent, amateur hacks currently running the system.” It sure couldn’t be worse than what we’ve got now.


A Legacy Of Failure: The word “legacy” was originally used to define money and property a person left behind in a will or university scholarships funded by former students. Fraternities and sororities also have “legacy” members. However,  in recent usage, political leaders have adopted the word and the current President has become obsessed with his legacy, the historically significant achievements of his tenure in office for which he wants to be remembered.

Commentators, pundits and writers apply the term “legacy” generously when referring to how Barack Obama wants to be recalled following his presidency, particularly during his final State of the Union Speech.

It’s all Obama has left and it’s not very flattering. As far as I can tell it will be impossible to put a positive spin on an administration that has been an abysmal failure and in which the negatives continue to pile up.

For example it will take a public relations magician to put a positive spin on the highlights of this unsuccessful administration which include: A prolonged economic recovery, the longest since the great depression; Healthcare turned into an economic and job killing nightmare opposed by a majority of the population; The growth of ISIS, refusal to acknowledge it, and failure to stop it; The empowerment of Iran and turning his back on allies, particularly Israel; Failing to secure the borders thus leaving them open to millions of illegal immigrants, low skilled workers and potential terrorists; Massive growth-inhibiting government regulations and telling Americans they didn’t build their own businesses or that they don’t need to make more money; Pushing back race relations by decades; Creating more debt than all of the other presidents combined; Creating a vacuum for Russia to emerge as a power broker in the middle east and eastern Europe and enabling China’s territorial expansion; Exchanging five high ranking Taliban leaders for a U.S. Army deserter; Prematurely withdrawing all U.S. forces from Iraq and releasing detainees from Guantanamo who have reentered the war against the U.S. and leaving the U.S. divided more than at any time since the 1960s and its military at all time lows in terms of equipment and manpower despite creating the most hostile world environment since 1939.

That’s some legacy, but one that will follow this incompetent and arrogant man the rest of his life and throughout history.


Time On His Hands: President Obama recently joined Jerry Seinfeld for an episode of a show called “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” to apparently display how hip he is or more than likely, because the last months of his presidency, like Seinfeld’s old TV show, are about nothing.

  • Comment (8)
  • Not as pumped about Trump as some folks.Still not sure he is for real as far as being Presidential and not a loud mouth egomaniac.I know I know that’s an invitation to be raked over the coals,but,sticking to my guns any way.Waiting to see how the Primaries go before choosing a candidate.Cruz or Rubio stand out over the rest as of now,but we’ll see.

  • Dave, I think you are right, it seems everyone is surprised about Trump. You gotta love a guy who can convince so many that he can somehow supercede the Constitution and ban a religion from entering the USA. Who else but Trump would think it is possable to deport 11 million? I give the man all the Credit in the world to be a good enough salesman, or fear monger, to sell the amount of snake oil he has to this point. He is also one of the biggest hypocrites you will ever meet. He calls Bill Clinton an adulterer. Bill Clinton is in fact an adulterer. Many who chant this should look up Trump’s long time relationship to Marla Maples while still married to Ivana. We have a kettle and a pot here and both are black. His lastest effort to get votes was to bring Palin on board. This was a lesson he should have learned from the looser ( as Trump put it ) Mc Cain who isn’t a war hero because he was caught. Palin is even a bigger prositute to jump to Trump’s side after Trump made those comments about the person who chose her as his running mate. In all these years Mc Cain never said one word against Palin. The one thing Washington can agree on is that choosing her as his running mate was the worst political desicion of all time, yet Mc Cain has only good to say about her. The real sad part is I am rooting for Trump to get the nomination. I honestly don’t feel he will beat Hillary in Nov. If for some reason, and anyting is possable, he does become President, his views are far more liberal than Cruz. He will however make a fool of himself once he learns he is President and not actully able to do most of the things people are counting on him to do. The other good thing, if the people in Great Britain have their way fish and chips will also not be a big problem for him– there will be none.

  • Dave, I too was skeptical about Trump early-on in the process. But he’s won me over. and he seems to have adopted a more “presidential perspective” and demeanor. The man has his finger on the pulse of Americans who are tired of all the lying, cheating and traitorous acts committed by the incompetent and unscrupulous miscreants now running this country. As for one of your other commentors, Tony Crawford, he used a lot of words blasting and demeaning Trump and could have made his point by simply saying: “I would never vote for a Republican and will dutifully follow the lead of my moronic fellow democrats who will either vote for a marxist/communist or a lying, law-breaking incompetent (if she doesn’t go to jail first) who has never achieved anything of substance in her entire life.

  • Terry, Using alot of words that are blasting and demeaning is the core of this blog. By the way, you put the wrong words in my mouth saying I would never vote for a Republican. Not true my friend. I was all set to support and vote for Mc Cain. but then he said the two most blasting and demeaning words ever spoken by a man with his courage and intelligence. Those words were “Sarah Palin.” I don’t vote party lines– I vote platform and canadates. I understand that being a US Senator and Secretary of State wouldn’t be defined as achieving substance by some, but it beats what a lot of us have achieved. I am happy you might be for Trump, as I said I hope he gets the nod to run. He is so much more liberal than Cruz, he is hated by the GOP even more than Cruz, and it will make for great debate and give every comedy writer in the world an every day Christmas.

  • Tony, I appreciate your compassion, but I make up my own mind about people and do not let the “main stream” media decide for me. I’m what the establishment republicans consider a tea party conservative. This country is in a slop pot. Every fabric that makes us unique has come under fire and is being destroyed, and I’m mad as hell. As for Sarah Palin, I think John McCain dragged her down. She bolstered his chances and she’s the one who had fire in her belly. But the mainstream media labeled her as a ding-bat and many un-thinking people nodded in unison. She’s anything but a ding-bat. And she’s a damn fine looking woman, as well. As governor of Alaska, she accomplished a helluva lot more than Hillary Clinton did as a Senator and Secretary of State. Clinton is nothing more than a political opportunist – not a very good one, at that. In fact, she has done as much harm to this country as Obama. And if you’re defending her, it says something about your political leanings and your willingness to vote for a liar and treasonous bitch who hates our military, the free enterprise system and is as much of a marxist/socialist as Bernie Sanders. As I said in my earlier posting, I was skeptical about Trump, but I’ve come over to his side. He’s a refreshing and hopeful change from the idiots we now have in place (including John McCain). I think he will do his damnedest to achieve what he’s promising because he does not like the taste of defeat. Truth be known, I’d probably vote for Mickey Mouse, if need be, to turn this country around and get the stench out of the White House.

  • Terry. enjoy your day and Spread your Passion for Trump. Great that you have strong views.


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