Saturday, July 25, 2015

Jane's Addiction and the Black Swan

A quarter of a century ago, I attended one of my all-time favorite concerts.  Jane's Addiction played to a packed house at the University of Duquesne's A.J. Palumbo Center on the Ritual de lo Habitual tour.  Around 5,000 people crammed into a basketball gymnasium.  That was 1991 and I was 21 years old.

Fortunately, whoever ripped my ticket left behind the latter part of the band's name.  Hey, information can be addicting.  Information spawns addiction.  At least for me it does.  If you disagree with that sentiment, you need not continue reading.  The remainder of this blog will be of little interest.

When entering a venue, they used to pat you down and rip your ticket.  Now they "wand you" and scan the ticket.  I remember when fans would beg the usher to just rip a tiny corner of the ticket.  I'll assume they wanted to preserve the evidence for their scrapbook.  Guilty as charged.

How times have changed.  Just learning about the event itself is different.  Back then, you stumbled across a flyer stapled to a telephone pole.  Or maybe you saw an ad in the Pittsburgh City Paper.  Nowadays, you do a google search and receive the details in 2-3 seconds.  Modes of communication have changed as well.  In 1991, there were pay phones everywhere.  You'd deposit a dime or a quarter.  These days, everyone (regardless of income level) has a cell phone.  Since 1998, the world has changed markedly.  Personalized transmission of information and wireless mobile devices are the wildcard.  And narcissism is the ticket.  Everyone participates but few seem willing to speculate about the consequences. Even fewer realize the role they play.

Everyone has a mobile device.  Perhaps it's already attached to your face.  Someday, I imagine it will be embedded in your body.  There was a hysterical episode of Shark Tank where this "futuristic weirdo" had a proposal to surgically implant a Blue Tooth-like device in your ear.  He may have seemed a little off but I don't think his vision was that far off.  If you seriously consider the reliance on pacemakers, artificial limbs, boob implants... I can see where he was heading.

Here's the Jane's Addiction set list from that memorable night in 1991:

Now here I sit, almost 25 years later, having just attended another Jane's Addiction concert.  Gigi and I hit the July 10 show at Stage AE.  I'd estimate an outdoor crowd around 3,500 or so.

Gigi snagged an official set list.  Score!

They performed Nothing Shocking in its entirety.  Killer stuff.  Great concert opener: Up the Beach > Ocean Size.

I attended a couple other Jane shows along the way.  Cleopatra Carmen, me and a few others hit up the Perry Ferrell solo project (Porno for Pyros) at I.C. Light Amphitheater back in 1993.  It was the same night "Fugazi" exposed himself to me in an alley by the Metropol in the Strip District.  They also headlined the 2003 Lollapalooza concert at Starlake.  Saw that one too.  They played Starlake again in 2009 w/ Nine Inch Nails, but I missed that one.  Not sure what stopped me.  Through it all, I've maintained an admittedly steadfast addiction and infatuation with all things Jane.

While I don't personally know the man, Perry Ferrell and I have much in common.  Not the bisexuality.  Not the dreadlocks.  But rather, the creativity and vision.  That's right.  I'm comparing myself to a rock icon.  Given, that's a lot of audacity.  But with one major difference.  My shit's more important.

Back in the early 90's, Ferrell conceptualized the entire premise of Lollapalooza.  This is a much bigger deal than you'd think.  At the time, there were plenty of music festivals, but nobody dared bring together all the different genres.  Ferrell pushed the envelope with this societal experiment.  The rap crowd, the country crowd, the indie crowd, the metal crowd.  Hey, why not try it?  The answer --- because nobody had the courage to embrace the unpredictability... the prophetic notion of taking a risk.

A few years back, I borrowed the "palooza" monicker for my own idea... SOAKAPALOOZA.  It was all about Westboro Baptist church payback.  Whenever the Topekafucks show up, you simultaneously announce an all-out water balloon fight to coincide with the festivities.  You also arm everyone with Super Soakers.  Fill 'em up with cheap beer.  May I recommend a keg of Natural Ice?  Everyone gets drenched in the crossfire.  Ohh, the outlandish hilarity of fun and games.  Eventually, the video footage goes viral and those intolerant Kansan bastards get a dose of their own righteous medicine.  Hint: It's called being a copycat.  I wrote about it in the Religion chapter of my odd oh biography.

Those same assholes just announced they're going to "protest" the funerals of the recent movie theater shootings in Louisiana.  What the fuck.  It will never end unless regular people step up their game.  Unless society chooses to be proactive as opposed to reactive.  I know.  I know.  Don't give them the publicity.  That's how they thrive.  It's what they crave.  You're playing right into their hands.

Newsflash:  The WBC follows the same model as the current asinine freakshow leading the polls for the Republican presidential nomination.  Trumpapalooza. 

Yeah, Soakapalooza was amusing.  It never really panned out, but I know it has anarchistic merit.

Anyway, this blog isn't about my recollections of Soakapalooza.  It's about the creation of words and concepts that have yet to emerge.  Picture yourself back in 1980.  Before words like "internet."  Before concepts like "cyberspace."  The same rules apply directly to my shit.  Words like "dominipede."  Concepts like an "artificially generated stampede."  They just haven't happened... yet.

I can assure you of something.  This stuff was around well before it just seemingly happened.  The vast majority of mankind just has difficulty envisioning the future.  It's always about celebrating events of the past.  Holidays, birthdays, baptisms, circumcisions, tombstones, the list goes on.  Few are willing to write about "that which is yet to come."  Because if they try, it becomes fictional or conspiratorial or delusional.   With one major exception --- the return of Jeebus... of course. 

I humbly give you the definition of a "black swan" - an unpredictable or unforeseen event, typically one with extreme consequences.   If there was ever a term that's google-worthyTrust me, try "black swan."

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Dead/Stones (Midwest Senior Citizen Tour)

Gigi and I took in a brief Midwest road trip over the 4th of July weekend.  Considering our vehicles are a little dated (2001 Subaru Outback and a 1995 Honda Civic), we thought it would be advisable to rent a car.  The prospect of breaking down in Gary, Indiana just didn't seem too appealing.  So we snagged a midsize, which translated into a 2015 Nissan Altima, which loosely deciphers into vehicular nirvana.

We checked inn to our hotel, a Hampton In, inn downtown Chicago early Thursday night.  About 3 miles up from the Soldier Field.  Snagged some dinner at a nearby restaurant named Beatrix.  Gigi had a pork shank w/ peaches.  I had the braised short ribs w/ mashed potatoes.  Good stuff.  Took in a few drinks at the hotel hot tub and called it a night.

We checked out early (literally not figuratively) and parked at a nearby lot (Adler Planetarium along scenic Lake Michigan).  All parking was $49.  Not much you can do to avoid the evil reality of parking and tolls.  We're gradually reaching a tipping point in American society.  When the cost to park your car exceeds the cost of the event itself.

The weather was absolutely perfect - high 70's, low 80's and breezy.  I snagged some exceptional beer for this road trip.  Terrapin Brewery from Athens, GA seemed like the appropriate choice.  Excellent stuff.  A variety pack consisting of Rye, Hopsecutioner, Chocolate Peanut Butter and Captain Krunkles India Pale Ale.  All four were outstanding, particularly the Rye Pale Ale.  

Even the Count Chocula crap was pretty good.  You just have to be in the right frame of mind.  I absolutely despise all the fruit-craft beers, particularly anything with lemon or raspberry.  But of all the idiot beers, I abhor anything pumpkin/cinnamon spice related.  Why not just force feed yourself a tablespoon of nutmeg?  Why would you pay a premium price to quaff this nonsensical Bahama Mama bullshit?  Note: we did have our standard backup of MBL (Milwaukee's Best Light), but that's neither here nor there.

So we got our "hike on" and hit up some of the local sites.  Then, we had a chance encounter with our friends from Wintersville, Ohio (Dave and Renea).  Great seeing those two.

Those who know me, are aware that I have an extensive Grateful Dead license plate collection.  About 380 actual pictures of plates taken from the lot scene circa 1990-1995.  During the move to Pittsburgh, everything was disassembled from my bedroom wall.  One day I'll make a poster out of them.  In the interim, enjoy this fantasy set list I constructed back in 2011 for my odd-oh biography.

Naturally, I kept an eye out for some new ones, but didn't have much success.  We spotted a hippie bus with a California plate (DAWHEEL), but I couldn't get it in time.  Saw a Wisconsin SLPKNT which I had previously taken back in the day, but the Saab owners had left the scene.  What a pity.  I would've enjoyed speaking with them.  I did scrounge up these two.

This one's a little on the lame side.  I mean.. I guess I get it.  I'm sure he's a proud father of his patchouli drenched offspring and all... but seriously, c'mon man!  

This Illinois (Terrapin) is kinda weak but the guy who owned it was exceptionally cool.  Apparently, his wife "used to date Bob Weir."  Odd... because I always thought Bobby was closeted homosexual.  His gang regaled us with a variety of classic acoustic rock songs.  And their leader told us of his 1990 tour exploits at the Tinley World Music Amphitheater (among other places).  Great storyteller.  He also gave us some patriotic jello shots and a couple bumper stickers. 

I'm normally not one who emblazons my vehicle with skulls and roses or dancing bears, turtles and the historic evolution of the mushroom.  But I do like the smiley face on the grilled cheese.  Maybe I'll stick it on our scrabble notebook.  

Having no tickets in hand, we kinda made a deliberate decision to NOT compete with the legions of miracle seekers.  It's always about supply and demand.  Lamentably, the dreaded hordes of stank were inextricably on the prowl, fingers raised in abundance.  We could have given it a better effort but it just didn't conform to the flow of the afternoon.

Towards crunch time, this one crazed, zany Dead fan tried to give Gigi his ticket.  He acted like he wouldn't be able to cope with the sensory input overload from a rock concert.  But she just couldn't accept it.  We hung out with him for a good bit and "brought him back down."  He thanked us accordingly for our discretion and psychiatric counseling.  Then, he abruptly bolted into Soldier Field.

Having not seen any of the three actual Chicago shows, I'm won't offer a lengthy analysis of the set lists.  Suffice to say, I really liked the song selections from the 4th and 5th.  I zipped through some of the pay per view footage on youtube.  The musicianship seemed a little slow for my taste, but that's just me.  In retrospect, I'm content to leave my memories of the Dead firmly grounded in 1989-90.  Everything else, I just don't take too seriously.  Maybe 1985-1988.

One last observation of the Fare Thee Well tour.  I have zero tolerance for these fake laminate, cardboard idiot necklace things.

These are NOT badges of honor.  They are badges of shame.  Why must people advertise that they're "concert newbies?"  It's like those Japanese tourists relentlessly snapping pictures of the McDonald's golden arches.  But duhhh, it came with the $199 VIP package.  Yeah, nice job fucko!  You got a dollar t-shirt, a vegan hot dog, a single plastic rose, that 10 cent wearable and a Casey Jones "high on cocaine" energy drink.  Way to go.  I'm really impressed.

So we bolted South as the band finished up with Help > Slip > Frank.  Figured it would be best to not spend an hour or two in heavy traffic.  Snagged a room at the Radisson Hotel in Merrillville, Indiana and called it a night.

Next morning we wolfed down a surprisingly tasty hotel breakfast and headed down I-65.  Stopped to refuel and grabbed an extra 6-pack of Red Stripe.  We hit up the Tippecanoe Battlefield Memorial adjacent to Prophetstown State Park near Lafayette.  Not bad, many perished, nice restrooms, avoided the gift shop.

We arrived at the Indy Motor Speedway around 3pm.  Huge line of traffic.  Ironic, because we just strolled in and parked for free at a lot adjacent to the Southeastern grandstands.  Why are all these people desperate to pay and park in the infield when you can just use the perimeter lots?  I don't get the mindset.  Must be an "Indy manners, Peyton Manning hospitality thing."  The locals will patiently wait and pay out the ass... while the out-of-towners are treated like royalty. 

We had little difficulty in snagging two freebies.  One was a gold ticket, the other a bronze.  With applicable service charges and printing fees, one was $400 and the other was $100.  Ouch.  People were eating tickets left and right... as if they were comfortably throwing away food at a Golden Corral buffet.

You could stand in three different areas (Bronze, Silver or Gold).  If you've never been to a concert, that loosely translates to close, closer and closest.  Then, we fashioned some "illegal" wrist bands to help expedite our move to the front.

Examine them carefully and you'll see the hastily taped "Marlboro Light box cigarette cut-out" enhancement.  Inspired by our excursion to Chicago, it was reminiscent of the doctored Obama "short form" birth certificate.  Admittedly a tad more ghetto. 

I must concede... I had an unbelievably naive perspective of the Stones concert at IMS.  For some reason, I thought all of the grandstands would be used for seating.  And the in-field would be for standing general admission.  Of course, if my vision was accurate, attendance would have been around 3 million+. 

Fuck it, there's a nine hole golf course inside that place. 

Turns out, they cordoned off a small section for a crowd of roughly 50,000.  However, it was the biggest (and only weekend) concert in the history of the motor speedway. 

The concert itself was bad ass.  Far superior to the uninspired Pittsburgh performance.  You can't even compare the two.  The band was energized.  At one point, Jagger referenced a bad joke about New England's Tom Brady which left him feeling a bit "deflated."  Funny stuff.
  1. (by request)
  2. (followed by band introductions)
  3. (Keith Richards on lead vocals)
  4. (Keith Richards on lead vocals)
  5. Encore:
  6. (with the Butler University Chorale)
Highlights for me were a soulful rendition of "Wild Horses" and an absolutely killer "Gimme Shelter."  Another highlight --- intentionally skipping the Rascal Flatt's opening act.

Incessant fireworks following the concert.  After the show, Gigi found a KOA campground and whipped out her pop-up tent.  Needless to say, we crashed out in no time.  Woke up early and hit the road.  Stopped at Katzinger's Deli in Columbus and got some soup and sandwiches to go.  Katzinger's gets my atheist Jew, godless kike seal of approval.  Word to the wise, pay the extra couple bucks and get the bigger sandwich.  You won't be disappointed.  We weren't.

And oh yeah, we snagged a GD sign off the western chain-link fence of Soldier Field.  Not a huge deal, but it did help emotionally compensate for being shut out.  One of the banned items on the list is confetti!  Gimme a fucking break.

And that concludes our 4-day, haphazard vacation of the Midwest.  Let me put it in terms you deadheads can comprehend.

1st set: I-79 > I-76 > toll > I-80 > toll > I-90 toll > I-94 > toll > I-90 > toll > I-65 > I-70 > no more tolls > I-79 > I-279 > home.

2nd set: Pennsylvania > Ohio > Indiana > Illinois > Indiana > Ohio > West Virginia > Pennsylvania.

Double encore:
Hot shower
Corned beef sandwich

If you enjoyed this dueling concert review, please consider reading either of these articles I've penned regarding the Grateful Dead or Rolling Stones solving a looming, asymmetric national security threat to the United States.  It's a black swan event that could very well be the next 9/11.  But don't worry so much.  Just sit back, drink your beer and smoke your grass.  Hey, nobody else gives a shit.  So why should you care?  You god-damn fucking hippie.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Christie's in... N-Out Burger

Yesterday, I watched some of the Chris Christie presidential campaign announcement.  All in all, I liked it.  I liked the extemporaneous approach.  I liked the intimate "in the round" setting.  And I really liked the fact that he went to his high school in Livingston, NJ as opposed to standing in front of a massive B-52 Bomber.  Even better, standing on an aircraft carrier.  We call that "Bush envy."  They should've announced in front of a mammoth widescreen replaying the Hindenburg tragedy.

"My name's Chris Christie  and I will courageously defend your blue state butt."
 I'm Chris Christie and I approve of your butt."  Oh, the humanity.

I think voters are finally growing wise to the excessive use of military props.  Not the American flag though.  Regrettably, one flag still ain't enough.  You need a half dozen in a row of perfect symmetry.  Hey, how else are you gonna be able to quantify their patriotism and love of country?  More flags... more flags... more flags.  They should hand out tiny little edible flags for the crowd.  I love the flag so much, I'm gonna eat it. Then, I'm gonna shit it out and eat the shit.  Truth be told, many consider the American flag a regurgitated delicacy.

Call it a hunch, but I think the "zero teleprompter" approach (ironically embraced by Trump the carnival barker) could heavily influence future candidate speeches and strategies.  Voters have grown exhausted with these badly rehearsed, environmentally controlled soirees.  Seriously, you gotta love the superimposed, ethnically diverse backdrop when Rick Perry hits the stage.  Yes!!!  Hmmm, now what do legal immigrants from Uganda, India, Singapore, Mozambique, Uruguay and Sudan all have in common?  Well, they're indubitably diehard Perry fans residing in Waco and Galveston.  Now THAT makes sense. 

With the Republican field currently surpassing 15 "credible" candidates, the most important consideration is trying to distinguish yourself from the herd.  That's NOT going to be accomplished with canned speeches at the Western Baptist church or the regional pig-squealing contest.  You gotta think outside the box.  Granted, it'll be a total nightmare for the damage control consultants.  But the needs of the candidate take precedence.  You must come across as an authentic human being.  That means taking actual, real questions and demonstrating a willingness to cope with occasional backlash.  And sometimes that lends itself to unpleasant realities.  Hey, not every voter mindlessly applauds at the Sarah Palin rally (U.S.A.! U.S.A.!, hockey moms of the world unite, drilling for Jesus, whatever).  It might sell in Iowa to the pill-poppin' Jesus freaks, but definitely not in New Hampshire.

Now this requires an incredible degree of discipline.  You actually have to listen to your advisers, be able to take constructive criticism, and most important, study and rehearse.  Over the long haul, a self professed know-it-all like Trump will eventually implode.  His ego won't be able to reconcile the reality of the situation on the ground.

There is certainly merit in appearing off-the-cuff and flying by your seat of your pants, or in the case of Carly Fiorina, flying by the seat of your pantsuits.  I'm just sayin' --- you gotta thread the needle and walk the line.  With all of these candidates, you gotta incorporate some calculated risk.  The 2016 race is noticeably different.  You need to stay relevant and in the news.  And the best way to accomplish this?  Venture into unexplored territory.  Try something new, something different.  Much like a gift assortment of fruit syrups.

The media becomes more "tuned in" when a greater level of spontaneity lends itself to miscues and general intrigue.  So you're more likely to get the attention of the major news networks.  Seriously, other than friends, family and political consultants, who the hell actually watched George Pataki's announcement?  Who the hell actually knows he's running for president?  Peculiar... you would think a 3-term former New York Republican governor would command a little more weight.

But if it's weight you seek...

Yep... sit down and shut up!  Close your damn mouth!  CHRISTIE IS BACK.  I'm not sure whatever happened with Bridgegate.  Honestly, for the vast majority of voters, it's a distant, forgotten afterthought.  Most people don't care unless they reside in Fort Lee, NJ.

I generally don't care for Christie.  But if I had to place a bet.  I think he has a better shot than the odds claim.  Because he has the strongest niche.  Not necessarily the best niche for an ultra-conservative primary, but it's still a niche.  It's all about differentiation.  If he can somehow miraculously survive Iowa and South Carolina... Nevada seems more feasible with his AC connections.   And it's very conceivable he could play in Florida.  The pundits say he's putting all his deviled eggs in one basket --- New Hampshire.  Smart move.  This is going to be a lengthy primary.  Nobody wants to concede too early.  Many envision a book deal or want to raise their coinage.  Longer they're in, the better.

So here's my idea.  Instead of preaching at every church bingo and flipping pancakes inside the local diner.   Instead of going the typical route with visits to veteran organizations and small businesses, here's what I'd do.

Some (scatterbrained) advice.

I'd make it a theme to go outside every Target Department store in the state of New Hampshire.  Do it right before every debate and USE THE EXPERIENCES TO DELIVER YOUR MESSAGE.  I just met with Dale Jenkins and he told me he needs back surgery....  I just had an encounter with retiree Charlene Locke and she's worried about her benefits.

There's only a grand total of 6 Targets in the entire state so they're relatively easy to navigate.  Just meet people out front and listen to their concerns.  Here's why I think this would be a novel idea.  First, the word "target."  Any time the press mentions it, there's a subliminal inference that he's the candidate with a "target on his back."  To the uninformed voter, it makes you appear as the frontrunner.  All of a sudden, Christie's the one that everyone is trying to dislodge or take a shot at.  Remember, at this point, it's about separating yourself from the pack.

'Ol fashioned retail politics.  In New Hampshire it still counts.  Plus, I think the "target" reference might attract a few confused gun nuts or 2nd Amendment fanatics.  Sounds imposing.  Best of all, once you do it, you own it.  If anyone else from the clown car tries to pull it off, the late night comedians will annihilate them.  Christie could really sell something like this.  Definitely, one of the more capable, convincing aspirants (with a focus on the ass part).  He puts the "candid in candidate."  Note to Christie campaign > use that line.  It's a winner.    

Second, it's totally in keeping with his brash blue collar, populist message.  Reminds me of the Gore 2000 campaign (angry populism, we can do better jibber jabber).  Christie's trying to appeal to the common man.  Not the elitist, millionaire Republican voter.  There's already plenty of competition for the Koch-Adelson-Friess money.  And hey, they're not going to back Christie anyway.  He just doesn't fit the ass-kissing profile.  Certainly not to the extent of Rubio, Santorum and the remainder of the lapdog ilk.

Third, what better a place to embrace his campaign slogan --- "telling it like it is."  Target.  What better a location?  The place regular Joes and Josephines shop for basic necessities.  For some reason, Target never gets hit with the anti-Walmart bashing criticism.  Not sure why, but Target and other big retailers seem to get a pass.  Everything's always walmart-centric.  Funny how people easily make the distinction.

Fourth, since he's made a deliberate choice to go unscripted, why not TRULY go out and be a man of the people.  Get your hands a little dirty.  Assuming Hillary gets the Democratic nod, this makes Christie look like a champion of middle class.  Four years later is a good time to recognize the "out-of touch" issues that devastated Mitt Romney.  Who knows?  Maybe the narrative would actually stick.  Could be an unanticipated setback for Hilldog.  Either way, it's the vote Christie needs if he's going to actually win the White House. 

Fifth, I think Christie is a good candidate to pull off a debate zinger.  He's pretty comfortable and plain spoken.  Now with most of the others, that bazinga moment is going to come across as scripted and desperate.  If I were in charge of his campaign, I'd have a few "spontaneous" attacks directed at the other major candidates, not just Hillary and Obama.  Preferably ones that make him appear to be a champion of the common man.  Stuff like, "Mitt, how's the car elevator working?"  Ridicule Trump too, "How are all your lawsuits doing?"  Seriously, who the fuck has a dozen simultaneous lawsuits?

Sixth, play up the Sopranos angle.  Don't go overboard with it, but throw in some Italian/Jew comments and ethnic humor.  Here's one --- Listen, Bobby Jindal is an national security expert just because he travels to New Dehli?  Hey now, I've traveled to many delis.  And specifically rattle off a list of privately owned delicatessens.  Lotito's, A&S, Jerry's, Giovanni's, etc.  Another winner.  Nullify the weight issue on YOUR terms.  Self-deprecation is a hot commodity these days, especially when your main competitor is an arrogant, prick-like fuck (Trump).

Play up the Bruce Springsteen and Bon Jovi angles too.  You can even use my joke, "Hey, I'm not only good friends with Bon Jovi, I'm friends with his aunt as well.  Her name's anchovy."  Maybe emcee a "get out the youth vote" rally with a drunken Snookie.

And throw in some Jets/Giants comments about the stadium being located in East Rutherford. Anytime the conversation shifts to the liberal, elitist New Yorker refrain, you tell them, hey I was just at the Jets game... in New Jersey.  Rock music and football sell well in mainstream America.  This is how the majority of dumbshits will remember you.  Not social security.  Not national defense.  Go for the classic drugs, sex and rock'n'roll.  Minus the drugs and sex of course.  I don't use drugs, but historically speaking, I have had a case of the munchies.  Play up the fact that you've seen Springsteen over a hundred times.  Leaves people with the impression that YOU are the rock star... or at least you speak to them on a semi-regular basis.  Just as good.

Seventh, use policy to shred Trump.  Call him out on all that birther nonsense.  A New Hampshire crowd will NOT be receptive to that line of bullshit.  Explain how a big part of politics is when there's a national disaster (Hurricane Sandy), you require normalized relations with the President, regardless of party.  Lives are on the line.  It's not about you.  The real-world doesn't work in your narcissistic fantasy world.

Push the red governor in a blue state aspect.  It's one of your best ideological attributes.  And it's handed to you on a silver platter.

Explain how we might not like Obama, but he has been effective in getting things done.  Getting his agenda railroaded through Congress.  Just not the stuff the Repubs want done.  I am Chris Christie.  I have learned those tricks of the trade, firsthand.  And I'll use them to defeat Hillary.  

Push Sandy too.  It's your environmental 9/11.  Coming together in the aftermath of a tragedy.  Reaching out across the aisle.  Bring people together.  Unity.

Also, go after Trump on a livable minimum wage.  I think Christie is the only Republican candidate willing to go on record for an increase in the federal minimum wags.  Ask him how a multi-bilionaire deals with cleaning the gutters or mowing the lawn.  Mock the shit out of that fuck... with a smile on your face.  If you're going to target any of them, go after the one who will naturally be at the center of the controversy.  People love the "regular guy" who puts "the boss" in his place.  Embrace the role of the underdog.

Be bold --- "Donald, Ronald McDonald, whoever... you are destroying the Republican brand!  And I take this stuff seriously.  Because the damage you're inflicting now, could be our demise in the general."  Crowd goes "Yay."  Then, follow it up with, I'm not trying to beat you guys.  I'm trying to beat Hillary and put a Republican in the White House.  Crowd goes "Super-duper yay!"

That's really the secret for Christie - a smooth transition from "angry, hostile" Christie to "introspective, tempered" Christie.   With frequent moments of "seemingly spontaneous" passion.

Alright, lemme just say that I'm doing my part.  I've been spamming the hell out of Christie on social media... so much so, that they banned me from making public comments again.  Curious to see how long this one lasts.  Not too concerned about it.

Governor Christie, here's an idea. Hope you can incorporate it in the campaign.  It's about transparency, the truth and "telling it like it is."  It's about keeping Americans safe. 

Every NFL stadium has 50,000 - 100,000 active cell phones. We need to explicitly warn fans that LEGITIMATE emergency evacuation orders do NOT come from their mobile devices.  If something like this were to happen, it's a malicious HOAX designed to create an "artificially generated stampede."

Just some common sense, public safety info that nobody's allowed to talk about. The federal government and private industry won't go anywhere near it... unless there's a tragedy.  Chris Christie, do you have the moral courage to acknowledge this asymmetric national security issue?

Ask him (or any other presidential candidate) about it and you'll likely be hailed as the "Edward Snowden of sports journalism."  Great question for a town hall.  Because they'd never allow it in the televised debates.

Note: I use the same spam on Ted Cruz, but I refer to him as Senator Crud.  "Ted Crud... do you have the moral courage...?"

I really like the sound of that.