There are way too many rant pages on the Internet!
But of course, I wouldn't be able to rant about that unless I had my own. Consider it a sinkhole for my anger.
And since I can't be bitter all the time, I'll pepper these pages with a few odd things I notice in life, too.
Biased Observations and Obligatory Rants
A Presentation of The Big Waste of Space Wanna see more?
November 2001 Previous Rants:  
November 26
There are a couple of gas stations near where I work, one across the street from the other. I personally always hit the first one, not because it's closer, but because it is always unfailingly four cents cheaper per gallon than the other one.

What gets me, though, is that there are always people filling up across the street. For the life of me, I can't find one single advantage to buying gas from the other station. They both belong to major chains (neither one is a shabby hole), they both allow you to pay at the pump and neither one is easier to get to than the other from any direction. You might think that those is a hurry go across the street to avoid the busy, cheaper station, but neither one is ever that bustling.

The gas prices are posted clearly in those enormous plastic numerals and anyone with a basic understanding of math can quite plainly surmise that filling up at the first station will save you money.

OK, so you'll save, like, 60 cents...but still, that's a whole fruit pie right there! (Which they both offer.)

November 11
Mac and cheese. Ramen noodle. Campbell's soup. Rice and beans.

It's interesting how the ratio of bowls to plates there are in one's dishwasher is directly proportional to how little money one has in a given week.

November 8
I've been seeing a lot of Americans lately displaying our flag disrespectfully and it looks like you morons could use a lesson in how to do it properly.

Here are the basic rules as set out in the United States Code:

  • The flag should be displayed only during daylight hours unless it is properly illuminated. In other words, it shouldn't be left out in the dark.

  • It should not be displayed in inclement weather, unless an all-weather flag is used. (Although I personally think it looks sad to have a soaking-wet flag wrapped around a pole in the rain.)

  • Here's one that a surprising number of you are getting wrong. When displayed against a wall or other flat surface, the union (blue star field) should be in the upper, left-hand corner. When displayed in a window, the rule applies as seen from the outside.

  • Here's another one that a lot of you need to pay attention to, quoted directly from the U.S. Code. The flag should not be draped over the hood, top, sides, or back of a vehicle or of a railroad train or a boat. When the flag is displayed on a motorcar, the staff shall be fixed firmly to the chassis or clamped to the right fender.

  • No other flag should be displayed higher than the U.S. flag. If another flag is to be displayed on the same level, then it should be to the U.S. flag's left (the observer's right) and should never be larger than the U.S. flag. When displayed with two or more other flags, the U.S. flag may be in the center, but should be the highest.

  • When hung over the middle of a street, it should be hung vertically, with the union at the top and pointing to the north or to the east. When hung over a hallway, the union should be at the top left as seen from the main entrance. If there is more than one main entrance, then it should again point either to the north or the east. (If there are entrances in all directions, it should point eastward.)

  • The flag should never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water, or merchandise.

  • The flag should never be used as wearing apparel. (Wonder Woman is in direct violation, as well as those of you wearing flag ties and tacky flag jogging suits.) It should also never be part of an athletic uniform. Patches are allowed, however, for uniforms of military personnel, firemen, policemen, and members of patriotic organizations (making Olympic athletes an exception). If you want to wear a flag, a flag pin can be worn on the left lapel over the heart.

  • The flag should never be used as a covering for a ceiling.

  • It should never be fastened, displayed, used or stored in such a manner as to permit it to be easily torn, soiled, or damaged in any way. This goes for all you jackasses driving down the highway at 70 MPH, flying a little flag from your window, allowing it to be ripped to shreds. If it's tearing, dispose of it!

  • And as for disposing of the flag, it should not simply be thrown away. When it is no longer fit for display, it should be burned, preferably. I've read that you can contact the American Legion or the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) for information on where and how to do this.

Again, these are just the basic rules, although I included a few, somewhat specific ones to let you know that there are quite a few rules for display that you probably didn't know were covered.

I highly recommend, even if you just want to pop up a quick flag to join in on the recent patriotic spirit, that you read the rules set out in the U.S. Code or perform an Internet search for a reliable source on proper display of the flag.

If you really want to show your patriotism, you can spend a few minutes making sure that you do it right.

November 6
I've been hearing a lot of complaints lately about entrepreneurs selling patriotic paraphernalia. The complaints usually begin with, "I think all the patriotism is great, but..." then go on to vilify those selling flags and flag-related items as heartless money-grubbers trying to capitalize on the horrific terrorist tragedies.

Look people want flags. People want flag pins. People want patriotic banners. People want to buy this stuff. And if people are to buy it, then someone has to sell it.

There is a demand and those who have the means are filling it. If people didn't want the stuff, then those trying to sell it would go out of business. Nobody's forcing anyone to purchase anything.

The public is looking to buy anything red, white and blue. What are companies supposed to do? Say, "Sorry, we aren't going to sell the stuff to you because it would be wrong to engage in such a transaction"?

If nobody sold the stuff, then everyone would bitch that they couldn't find any patriotic merchandise and whine about the lack of evident patriotism.

It's supply and demand. Free enterprise, baby. And isn't that a huge part of what we're fighting to protect?

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