The Little Jazz Baby

Good day, readers!  I have a huge announcement just in time for Christmas!  My new blog, The Little Jazz Baby, is now open for business and looking for readers and subscribers!

Jazz Baby

If you love old jazz, art, fashion, silent film, and the 1920s in general, this blog is for you.  And for those of you who have missed the weekly feature Silent Star Saturday on this blog, it’s making a comeback on The Little Jazz Baby, so stay tuned, folks!  I promised you (repeatedly :p) that this was coming, and now it is here.

Please, please, please drop by and tell me what I am doing wrong and what I am doing right.  I really appreciate feedback from you guys.  You’re the best readers ever.  I’ve missed you!

Coming Soon On the New Blog

  • Silent Star Saturday (as promised over and over again for the past several months)
  • Special offers/giveaways/promotions  I am still in the planning stages on this one, folks.  I am planning on perhaps featuring one star for the whole month and giving away memorabilia related to that star.  And I am looking for anyone who would like to have their projects promoted.
  • Jazz Age art, music, fashion, and more Posts and resources for all things related to the 1920s.  This could even include modern things that have a Jazz Age flair to them…good, bad, or indifferent.

If you have any suggestions or questions, please feel free to get a hold of me at any time and left me know what’s up.

To check out the new blog, just follow this link~~> The Little Jazz Baby

I can’t wait to see you there!

Come Visit My New Blog, Favorite Quote Friday!

As you all know, I have given up on my daily posts here at the Daily Hottentots.  I am no longer able to keep up a regular daily posting habit.  I work evenings now and reserve most mornings and afternoons for the causes I am involved in.  (I am an activist first, blogger second.)

Conrad Veidt

Random screen capture of Connie Veidt in The Beloved Rogue…right before he goes the hell off on his little effeminate barber for cutting his throat.

I love blogging and sharing information with others, so I am not willing to give it up all together.  I have the Silent Star Saturday project in the works.  I plan on launching that in the early part of next year…maybe in time for Conrad Veidt’s birthday on 22 January.  If so, my first post will be about him. :P  (Any excuse for Connie crack….)  I might not be able to get it up that quick, though. It all depends on what my $$ looks like as this will be a self-hosted blog and I have to put out a wee expense for it.

What is available now is my new weekly blog Favorite Quote Friday, based on the weekly series on this blog of the same name.  So if you liked the posts in that series, I invite you to drop by the new blog and leave your two cents.

The first post You Can Help Eradicate a Deadly Disease Called Puritanism features a quote from journalist and critic H. L. Mencken. Follow the hyperlink there.

Additionally, you can join the Facebook page for updates and links, or follow my good ol’ Twitter account.

Bear in mind that Favorite Quote Friday is a brand new blog and there are still a lot of tweaks I need to make.  I hope to see you all there!

Daily Blogging Breakup

Have you ever come to a point in your life where you have to break down and admit that you just can’t continue doing something anymore?

When you start a project, you jump right in, all gung-ho about it.  Then, suddenly, after several weeks or several months, it feels like work. Your mind becomes occupied with other things and the thing you were so enthusiastic about in the beginning is not doing it for you anymore.  You find that you are uninspired all the time and do not even want to bother with it.

That is the point I have reached with this blog.  I tried to deny that I was getting burned out with it, but looking at some of my content lately, it is obvious to me.  I have posted because I feel that I have to.  Even when I am uninspired.  The result is mediocre at best content.  Yuck.

I always do this to myself.  When I embark upon a new blog, I feel that I have to blog every day to keep my readers entertained.  Then I burn out within months…if I last that long.  I have to remind myself that daily blogging is not for me.  I cannot do it, especially now that I have a full-time job (when I started this blog I was unemployed) and my time is extremely limited.

I am also not blogging about my passions.  I like motivational/inspirational things, but it isn’t what I am most passionate about.  My passions are old Hollywood/movies in general (especially silent films, film noir, German expressionist films) and art.  That is one fatal mistake many bloggers make—they do not blog about something they are truly passionate about and then they burn out before they know it.

Has that happened to you?

I am most happy when I am lost in a black and white world, watching flickering images of exaggerated gestures from actors in heavy makeup.  And I believe that is why Silent Star Saturday was my most popular post through the week on this blog.  People saw how much I loved what I was talking about every week.  Oh, and do not think that I have given up the idea of starting a whole new blog dedicated to Silent Star Saturday.  I am in the middle of doing research and preparing other things before I launch that blog.  It’s coming, brothers and sisters, but just a little later than I originally thought.

The one thing I got from the Ultimate Blog Challenge this month is that I am better off when I am posting about once or twice (at max three times) a week.  I cannot force myself to do the daily blogging thing anymore, especially now that the time I am able to spend online has been cut in half.

I will keep this blog up, for sure, but I will only post on it from time to time to keep people updated on the launch of other blogs I have in the works.  I hope all my readers understand and appreciate the fact that I have burned out on daily blogging and just cannot do it anymore. :(

Will the President Make a Difference in Your Life?

For the next few days I am playing catch up here on the Daily Hottentots.  Work—and life in general—has made it extremely difficult to sit down and write lately.  But I will be all caught up by Thursday or Friday…I hope.

English: Seal of the President of the United S...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As you can assume by the headline, today’s post is all about politics.  I know that some of you are out there groaning and rolling your eyes because you expect more from me, but I promise you that this will be one of the rare times I feel the need to rattle my virtual gums about politics on here.

This election year finally wraps up two weeks from today.  All the attack ads from the major parties will end.  All the pandering and baby-kissing will be no more.

What will people do with themselves then?  They will do what they always do—automatically start complaining about the winner and will continue complaining for the next four years.

For some reason people think that these elections actually mean something.  They think that if they can get their man in office then their life will be better somehow.  But does the election, or the president, have any real impact on you personally?  Will whomever gets into office make a real difference in your life?  Probably not.

I can almost guarantee you that once the election is over in November, and once the oath of office is taken in January, it will be business as usual in Washington.  And that business does not involve your best interests, but somehow they will convince you that it does.

The president and state representatives do not make your life better.  Indeed, they make it worse, especially if you are in the military or the family of a service member.  The thing our government does best is go to war in the name of “national security” and “national interest.”  We pick an enemy and then we go into their countries, bomb civilians (the “collateral damage”), and then come home screeching, “Mission accomplished!”

Remember how Barack Obama said that he was going to disarm nukes and end wars?  You should have known that was BS.   We still have nukes and we still have wars.  We have gone into Pakistan and dropped bombs there, causing more of that “collateral damage,” and have flown into Libya to drop bombs as a way of helping people being tortured by a dictator (yeah, dropping bombs indiscriminately is a huge help).  Now the press is preparing us for possible military action with Syria and Iran.

We have to go into Iran, see, because they are not allowed to make nuclear weapons.  Only the US and Britain and Israel are allowed to have those, see.  And if a little hole-in-the-wall like Iran has nukes, then we have to fight them in the name of “national security.”

Meanwhile, while we are off playing war with other countries, the citizens of the United States get screwed.  Poor children (about one in five children) go to bed hungry every night in this country.  The media and the government try to lie about that or sweep it under the rug hoping no one will notice, but the fact is, we have hungry families who receive very little help.  This should not be happening in a country like the United States.

Do you still think the President of the United States will make a difference in your life?

Ladies and gentlemen, the government is a huge joke.  This country should be run by the people and for the people.  We should have communities all over the US deciding the best course of action to take on anything…not some government fat cat who doesn’t know your name, but sure wants your vote.  It is extremely insulting that wealthy men and women think that it is in everyone’s best interest when they make all your decisions for you.

Unfortunately, I know that my vision of a classless, stateless America is a pipe dream.  And we would probably screw things up like Russia did after the Bolshevik Revolution if we got the chance to really change things.  For some reason we refuse to learn from history.

But I still hold out the hope that people everywhere will soon realize that voting does not do them a bit of good as long as we are given a choice between Fascism and Fascism Lite as we have with Mittens and Barack Obama in this election.

Do You Need a Sky Daddy?—How Religion Preys on the Weak

God, the Father watches us all everywhere.

Who’s your sky daddy? (Photo credit: angelofsweetbitter2009)

What is God?  Is he/she/it your daddy in the sky?  Do you think that they are really looking down on earth and keeping a checklist of everything you say and do here?  If you don’t say and do the right things, watch out!  God is going to cast you into a lake of fire for all eternity.

When did your first become aware of God?  Did you just wake up one morning and suddenly realize there was one?  Or did someone else tell you all about him?

If you are truly ignorant of the great sky daddy, will he still cast you into the fiery pits of Hell?

A lot of religious people avoid these questions when I, or anyone else I know, ask them.

Another important question is:  do you need a sky daddy?  Why do you need one?  Why can’t you live independently and make your own way in life without living your life according to something you have never seen much less spoken to?  Doesn’t that seem kind of silly?

Now I am going to say something that will probably shock you:  I believe there is a God that created the universe (I am a Deist); however, the God that religions have made up is a sadistic jerk who gets off on genocide.  And that God, ladies and gentlemen, does not exist.  If he does exist, people are pretty stupid to worship him.

Have you ever noticed that a lot of people come to God, and religion, when they have hit rock bottom in life?  They have had trials with violent crime, drugs, alcohol, disease, etc. and suddenly God comes to them and saves them from themselves.

Did God really come to these people or did a mortal have something to do with this sudden revelation?

Religions—all of them—are known to prey on the weak and pick off the undesirable people among the human race.  Missionaries, priests, and other men of the cloth convince millions that they were blessed with the special ability to read God’s mind.  They go into foreign lands and teach the ignorant masses all about God and tell them that they must be saved.

English: 19th century Burmese temple painting....

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Indeed, the Catholic Church has done this for centuries.  And if people do not comply with what they are taught, they are tortured and killed in the name of God.

These religious types come to you when you are at your must vulnerable and convince you that you must have God in your life and you must do his will.  Read the Bible—and do not stray from the Word!  God will smite you for it.  If you’re a really good little boy or girl, you’ll get a mansion in the sky and get to hang out with some pretty cool people.  If you’re bad, you will be pitchforked by demons for all eternity.

If  I were still an impressionable little child who was scared of monsters under the bed, I just might believe that BS.  And that is exactly what religinuts are counting on….

God gave us reason not religion. Man created religion to control people, not to teach them about God or Gods.  The things they do and say make that obvious.

Hate Is a Pointless Emotion

Conrad Veidt, Favorite Quote Friday

If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is a part of yourself. What isn’t part of ourselves doesn’t disturb us.

~Hermann Hesse

Welcome to another edition of Favorite Quote Friday, everyone.  I know, I was supposed to get rid of this weekly post and give it its own blog, but I’ve changed my mind.  I decided to keep it and change the picture I use for it. (Which is of my German flavor of the month Conrad Veidt, by the way.)

Today’s quote comes from another German, Hermann Hesse, who, like Veidt, was married to a Jewish woman and fiercely opposed the Nazis.

Do you agree with what he said?  Do you think that if you hate another person, then there must be something inside yourself that is loathsome?

What he said makes sense.  Hate is a pointless emotion.  It does not change anything in a situation, or life in general. All it does is cause misery and destruction.  The Nazis hated Jews, Occultists, Socialists, and everyone else they deemed a political suspect.  All that hate and cold-blooded murder accomplished nothing.

They hated people for who they were and what they looked like.  Hitler wanted people to believe that the more than six million Jews he murdered were inferior to the rest of the human race in some way.  However, the Jews have shown the world again and again what geniuses they are in every field imaginable.  Is there anything they cannot do?  That does not smack of inferiority to me.

The real issue is what Hesse was talking about when he said that our hatred for others stemmed from something inside ourselves:  Hitler hated the Jews’ supposed inferiority, but even tiny amount of research will show that there is no inferiority.  The problem was that Hitler was ashamed of his own inferiority.  He failed as a military leader, an artist, and most everything else he set out to do, so instead of just accepting the fact that he was a loser, he went on a genocidal rampage.

Hate is destructive and ugly.  It does nothing but stop progress and make us look like jerks.

Instead of focusing on the people and things we hate, we should instead focus on the people and things we love.  Passion can move mountains.  It can build cities, cure diseases, and invent any number of things that help move society forward.

So if you are wasting your time hating another person, it is not too late to stop.  The hatred you feel is not worth all the stress, ulcers, and wrinkles you are giving yourself…is it?

Don’t Let Writer’s Block Destroy Your Life

#ds139 "Writer's Block"

(Photo credit: Sharon Drummond)

The blinking cursor of death is haunting you again, isn’t it?  You have sat there staring at a blank screen for what seems like hours, but nothing is coming to you.

You have that horrible affliction that every writer experiences at least once in his or her life—writer’s block.

You dread it, yet you think you are full of such good ideas that it will never happen to you.  But then it hits you, and you are devastated.  You begin to wonder if you will ever write again.  Then you begin to wonder if writing is even worth it.  No one ever reads what you write anyway.

Your self-esteem is shot.  Your potential career as the world’s biggest blogger or hottest dime store romance author is doomed all thanks to that damned blinking cursor on your screen.

Do not despair, my friend.  As with anything in life, this too shall pass.   You will get over it and come back better than ever.  This writer’s block is good for you.  It forces you to look for new ways to be creative.  So do not let it destroy your life.  Embrace it…and take comfort in the fact that you are not alone.

If you have gone to any of the 5 fantastic places to find inspiration (or any number of websites that were created with the writer in mind) and still cannot think of anything to write about, just step away from the computer and take a deep breath.  Something should come to you eventually.  It’s not the end of the world, my babies.

When all else fails, why don’t you try writing about writer’s block?  Have you ever thought about doing that?

Maybe, or maybe not.  I’ve found that when I have writer’s block and start rummaging through the internet for advice, the people giving it rarely ever mention anything about writing about writer’s block.  I wonder why;  it is an effective way to finally get rid of  the affliction.

When you write about your writer’s block, the ideas start flowing again.  Y0ur hands and eyes are moving along with the cursor on your screen, or the pen on your paper.  And then voilà!  You have nearly 400 words written about something that someone somewhere is going to read, even if it is not all that newsworthy or earth-shattering.

After you have finished putting a period at the end of your last sentence, you sigh contentedly.  You feel accomplished.  And you are ready to start all over again tomorrow.

Sometimes We Have to Shed People from Our Lives

English: A Bully Free Zone sign - School in Be...

A Bully Free Zone sign – School in Berea, Ohio (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Yesterday I had to vent about a jerk who insulted me and my intelligence.  I do not like venting on this blog, I like to keep things positive as much as I possibly can, but he made me mad and I do not believe in keeping things bottled up.  I thought it would be a good lesson in bullying by showing how dumb bullies can look when they go off on people for no reason.

It should also be a good lesson in how we should not let crazy people and their crazy ideas about us hurt our progress in life or bring us down to their level.

When faced with a particularly nasty person, you can do one of two things.  You can:

A.) Let them rant and rave like a loony

People will see them acting like a nut and it will reflect poorly on them and gain more sympathy for you.

B.) Walk away from that person, leaving them to cuss and scream to themselves

The moment someone starts cussing and screaming at you, just walk away.  This is probably the preferable option of the two, and it is much easier to do if the person is fighting with you online.  Modern technology makes it easy for you to ignore horrible people.

Regardless of when and where the bully is, one thing is perfectly clear:  you do not have to put up with their bullying.  As Hottentots reader and commenter Jessica Crooks said yesterday, “Sometimes we have to shed people from our lives.”

Never let the bully have the upper hand in a situation.  Do yourself a favor and stop all association with them if it is possible…and most of the time it is possible.

If you are in school and someone is picking on you, please tell someone in authority—a parent, a counselor, a teacher, a member of the clergy.  Do not think that you have to deal with this on your own.   There are people who can and will help you before a situation gets out of hand.

If you are an adult in an abusive relationship, call the authorities and go to a safe place.  Do not allow anyone to yell at you or put their hands on you.  You are a human being and deserve to be treated like one.

It is time to wake up and realize that abuse, whether it is physical or mental—or both—is not normal and should be handled before it’s too late.  There are too many instances of school shootings occurring because the shooter was allegedly bullied and too many men and women winding up dead because they stay in abusive relationships.  This needs to stop.  Now.  There is no excuse for harassment and violence.

Take any steps necessary to get rid of all your toxic relationships and develop new ones that will enrich your life and make you whole again.  Remember, folks, you choose your own path in life and choose the people who will go down that path with you.  You cannot blame anyone other than yourself if you do not choose wisely.

I do not care if the negative person is your parent or some other family member or your next door neighbor, you do not have to put up with them.  Sever all ties with them and begin to heal.

I Do Not Forgive and I Do Not Forget

RANT, this way

RANT, this way (Photo credit: Nesster)

Ladies and gentlemen, you will have to forgive me for this wee rant today but I have been ticked off for the past several days because of some pretty nasty things some jerk said to me.  My creative thoughts will be stifled until I get this crap off of my chest.  I do not like to use this blog as a rant dump, but today is just one of those days.

I hope the jerk that ticked me off reads this!  And I hope that some of you out there can relate to what I am about to say….

The other day on my Facebook, I was on one of my political rants about so-called “liberals” and this “friend” who is apparently on the right-wing lunatic fringe started posting extremely profane comments on the thread.  He called me names that began with a “c” and a “b” and pretty much everything in between, and told me that he thought anarchists should be lined up and shot to death.

(For those of you who don’t know, I am an anarchist, and I am used to that guy’s brand of volatility…)

He went on and on with his macho flag-waving super patriotism whilst I shoved my finger down my throat and gagged, disappointed that he couldn’t see me mocking him and his American exceptionalism.  For every “America is the greatest nation on earth” comment he threw at me, I pointed out American imperialism all over the world and how innocent young troops were being duped into killing loads of civilians overseas for corporate interests.

His flag-waving (and apparently his drinking) continued, and so did my eye-rolling.

Then came this:

your [expletive] grandparents were nazis or nazi sympathizers, no? or they simply sat back and let hitler come to power. so you are german? Huh…that helps expalin (sic) some of your sick [expletive] views. and if you hate america, why the [expletive] are you here?

Out of all 74 comments on that thread, that one ticked me off more than any other.  People know I am very protective of my family and that I am proud of my German heritage.  And they also know that I loathe, hate, despise and abominate the Nazis more than anything in this world.  I refuse to associate with anyone who uses such vile and disgusting language in my presence.

The funniest part is that the jerk thinks I hate America because I am 110% against war regardless of how “just” the government says it is.  It’s as if he thinks military action and bombs are the only things that define America.

I do not forgive people like that.  They are dead to me.  I also do not forget it when they call my family—whom they have never met—Nazi sympathizers just because they happen to be German.

He certainly is not the only person to call me derogatory names.   I am used to criticism.  But he just found out that I do not sit around and take it for long.  I cut negative people out of my life.  I do not feel the need to help them through their addictions and mental issues, especially when they have gone out of their way to be nasty to me.  Forget it, buddy.  You messed with the wrong chick.

I do apologize to everyone for this long-winded rant, but I just had to get it off my chest and let it go because it has bothered me for longer than I want it to.  Now back to regularly scheduled blogging…

I feel loads better now!

You Should Learn from Other People’s Mistakes

There’s an old Latin proverb that goes, “A wise man learns by the mistakes of others, a fool by his own.”  This probably seems absurd to most people in this society because we are taught from a very young age to learn from our own mistakes.  But is it really all that absurd?

Have you ever really learned anything from your own mistakes?  Now be honest with yourself.  Have you?  Probably not.  Whenever you do or say something you wish you hadn’t, you say, “Well I’ll never do (or say) that again!”  And what do you do?  Yep.  You do it all over again.  Repeatedly.  Unconsciously expecting different results each time.

Insanity:  doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

~Albert Einstein

Einstein was right (as usual), it is insane to keep doing something over and over again and expecting different results.  So why are you doing it?  You are not learning anything.  You are not growing as a person.  You are just continuing a vicious cycle that is not doing you or anyone else any good.

Stop trying to learn from your own mistakes. It ain’t gonna happen, my friend.  We seem to be completely incapable of seeing ourselves for who we truly are anyway.  Most of the time other people tell us who we are and what we really are.  When people come to us and tell us our flaws, we should listen and we should do what they suggest doing to correct it.

Instead, you should learn and grow through other people’s mistakes, just like the Latin proverb says.  When you watch the news and see how foolish people look, you should make a mental note that you never be like that guy (or gal).  When someone is being a real ass to you or to someone else, remember it and vow to have a better attitude than they do.

Other people can teach us a lot more about ourselves than any amount of solitary soul-searching.

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