Anyone Believe Zimmerman’s Innocent Yet?

March 29, 2012

By Cole

More than a month after shooting Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman’s best strategy might be to ask his lawyers, family, and “friends” to shut up already.

Early on, Zimmerman played the victim card, alleging Trayvon jumped HIM. It just doesn’t make sense. Trayvon’s girlfriend was listening on Trayvon’s cell and heard him ask, “Why are you following me?” and then she said the phone sounded like it dropped and went dead. I believe her story because talking to his girlfriend is exactly how a kid walking down the street would occupy himself.

If Trayvon was stalking Zimmerman to jump him, don’t you think he’d first stop yakking and put his phone away so he’d have both hands free?

Zimmerman’s father Robert (a retired judge) claims Trayvon said something like, “You’re gonna die tonight.”

Every new version from Zimmerman’s side makes Trayvon sound thuggier.

Now there’s video of Zimmerman with the police that night. He claimed Trayvon beat his head against the sidewalk and broke his nose, yet refused to go to the hospital. At the station, his clothes look tidy, he doesn’t seem in pain, nor are blood or wounds evident. Hmmm…

Somebody has tried to smear Trayvon by leaking he was on suspension from school over marijuana crumbs found in a baggie in his backpack. Nobody knows if he smoked it.

If Trayvon was a user, it only works in his favor. Potheads are known for outbursts of violent aggression — NOT.

Also leaked was that Trayvon had been suspended 3 times this past year, and may have been involved in a robbery or burglary, as if perhaps he deserved killing. But that didn’t give Zimmerman the right to be his executioner.

Zimmerman’s past includes trouble for assaulting a policeman and once had a restraining order taken out against him by an ex-fiancée.

Zimmerman’s lawyer, Craig Sonner, crazily fled before an interview with Lawrence O’Donnell (to ensuing hilarity), but Trayvon’s family’s lawyer stuck around and raised 2 excellent points:

1) Did the Stand Your Ground law cover Trayvon while he was being pursued by a gun-wielding stranger, making it OK to strike back in self-defense?

2) Can the instigator of a fight claim “self-defense” once he loses the fight, to justify whatever harm he inflicted on his opponent?

And then there’s Joe Oliver, a black guy who’s been making the rounds defending Zimmerman, when it turns out they’re barely acquainted. O’Donnell ripped Oliver a new one, revealing him to be another publicity hound who might say anything.

Lead investigator Chris Serino has said he didn’t believe Zimmerman’s story and wanted to arrest him, but was told to back off.

Trayvon may be dead and unable to defend himself, but nobody’s helping Zimmerman, either.

It’s just a shame that this has morphed into a big racial thing. Strangely enough, the 2 white people who best seem to “get it” are Newt Gingrich and Michele Bachmann. And the point is…

No kid of ANY race or color should have to worry about getting shot. Crazy guys who shoot kids without provocation need to go to jail. Period.


Can You Be Too Evil for a Transplant?

March 27, 2012

By Adele

Apparently not. Sometimes karma must take a nap. Last weekend, former vice president Dick Cheney got a heart transplant, after being kept alive with a pump for 20 months.

I don’t wish anybody dead, but with Cheney, you have to wonder if the U.S. would have started wars and the occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan if any of Cheney’s pre-2000 heart attacks had been fatal.

But because Cheney survived to beat the drum for war, tens of thousands of innocent soldiers and civilians have died. And Cheney has never expressed the least bit of remorse about it.

Not to mention all the animals he’s killed for fun on his hunting trips.

And now there’s a family, probably somewhere in the D.C. area, who must be wondering if the loss of their loved one made it possible for Cheney to survive yet again.

And if the organ donor wasn’t a war-loving conservative, his or her family must live with the suspicion that they helped resuscitate a monster. Transplant protocol allows for donors and recipients to remain anonymous.

In this case, it’s probably for the best.

Meanwhile, much younger heart patients who have never killed anybody continue to wait — and may die waiting for a heart donor.

The good news is that Cheney is retired and irrelevant, so it’s highly unlikely he’ll instigate any more wars. He’s free to happily live out the rest of his days on the fortune he raked in at Halliburton.

But karma may never live this down.


Ottavia Bourdain Goes to the Mat

March 26, 2012

By Karen

If you follow @OttaviaBourdain on Twitter, you know she eats, breathes, and sleeps mixed martial arts. On Saturday, March 24, Cats Working reader MorganLF had the opportunity to watch Ottavia participate in her first competition at GrapplersQuest in Wayne, NJ. I’m not into that scene, but Morgan thinks Cats Working should keep the Bourdain archive fairly complete, so (with her permission) here is Morgan’s full report and pics…

Man what a scene! Grappling is very visceral. I got there five minutes before Ottavia’s fight at the local Police Athletic League facility. Picture a big gym with large mats on the floor. Each mat is a “ring,” separated by ladies/men weight class etc.

Ottavia was in the corner, ring 2. Tony was standing ringside with everyone else. The Big Gay Ice Cream dudes were there, too. I grabbed a space near the edge of the mat, right behind her coach and some officials, and a few feet from Tony.

When Ottavia came on to the mat, she saw me and waved, then went into full-on fight mode. During the match I stood on the bleachers to get a better view and caught Tony’s eye. We exchanged smiles and waves. We’ve met so many times now, I know he recognizes my bright red head!

Grappling isn’t like wrestling. It’s more aggressive. In this video, she’s winning her first bout, which I sort of missed because I was screwing with my phone’s camera.

Tony looked on, proud and generally just chilling. I went over to him and asked if she won the bout. He said yes. One of the Big Gay dudes said, when the official pulls your hand over your head, it generally means you’re the victor. That’s the part I missed.

I told Tony it was the first time I’d seen this sport and commented on how rough it was. He agreed and said, “Another one is coming up.”

I asked, “You mean your daughter?” and Tony said, “No, she fights again, until she’s eliminated.”

Tony watches the fight (Photo - MorganLF)

At that point, Ottavia was on the sidelines in deep concentration with her coaches.

Her next opponent was not playing. Ottavia put on the fiercest game face; you would never recognize her. It’s wild, not like wrestling where you go for the pin. This is a point system. They jump on each other, wrapping their legs around the other or using any device to get the “take-down,” which puts them on the mat and wins points. Then it’s all this painful-looking twisting and crab-walking.

Ottavia (left) faces off with her opponent, who won this one. (Photo - MorganLF)

Ottavia “tapped out,” meaning she tapped the mat to indicate she was done, and that eliminated her. I went over and congratulated her and then left the Bourdains to the photographers who were swarming around them.

Ottavia wears her silver as she and Tony celebrate with her trainers. (Photo - @NoReservations)

PS: A few times, Ottavia’s shirt got pulled up to reveal a serious 6-pack. She’s in amazing shape. Once again, what struck me is how unpretentious the Bourdains are, in spite of his celebrity. There were no handlers; in fact, Tony was wearing a paper wristband for access into the building just like the rest of us.

Well folks, there you have it. Her first time out, Ottavia won a silver medal. Cats Working congratulates her and predicts she’ll bring home the gold next time!

Bonus…

Some classic video of Ottavia grappling with a guy at the Big Gay Ice Cream shop a few months ago.


Florida’s Strange Notion of “Self-Defense”

March 21, 2012

By Cole

Virginia, take notes: Here’s what happens when you let any fool who thinks he’s a Charles Bronson character have a handgun.

Somebody ends up dead.

The shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida, is making national headlines. In case you’ve been under a rock…

On the rainy evening of February 26, Trayvon walked to 7-Eleven to buy Skittles and a can of iced tea. Strolling home through a quiet, gated townhouse neighborhood, Trayvon was chatting by cellphone with his girlfriend when he was spotted by 28-year-old George Zimmerman, a burly, white/Hispanic, self-appointed Neighborhood Watch vigilante. Since 2004 (Corrected 3/22), while on his rounds, Zimmerman has called 911 46 times.

To Zimmerman, a black kid walking down the street in a hoodie meant “trouble.” Zimmerman followed Trayvon in his SUV and called 911. The dispatcher told Zimmerman to leave the kid alone.

But Zimmerman, with his gun, pursued and confronted unarmed Trayvon.

Within moments, Trayvon lay dead with a bullet in his chest. Zimmerman told the police he killed the slender boy in self-defense.

Apparently, the police response was, “Oh, well, that’s OK then. Have a nice evening.”

Florida has this “Stand Your Ground” law where you can kill anybody, claim it was self-defense, and the authorities readily agree the deceased had it coming and let you go your merry way.

Since he’s not been charged, the court of public opinion has Zimmerman on trial. Did he call Trayvon’s race “f**king coons” to 911? (I, and many humans who don’t have acute feline hearing, say yes.) Was Zimmerman just looking for trouble? Did he over-react?

All the answers seem to be yes, yet some people are still trying to defend this INSANE law and Zimmerman.

A boy is dead because Zimmerman pursued him when he was committing no crime. Trayvon, packing Skittles, was accosted by a much larger man with a gun. Now, WHO needed self-defense?

Nobody disputes that Zimmerman killed Trayvon. If there’s any justice, Zimmerman would be sitting in jail awaiting his trial for murder right now.


Hooked on House Hunters International

March 14, 2012

By Karen

I’ve found a travel show I love even more than watching Anthony Bourdain stroll strange streets, stuffing food into his mouth.

It’s House Hunters International on HGTV. In 30 minutes, a regular single person or couple, not always American, who wants to relocate to another country checks out 3 properties there, then picks one as home.

There’s a domestic House Hunters, too, but every time I’ve watched, married twits with budgets inadequate for their outlandish expectations rejected great homes for dumb reasons. It would be amusing only if they’d let the real estate agents snap and cuss out the stupidest clients or beat the living crap out of them.

But back to International. They price everything in U.S. currency so you can relate, and show where real people live in Paris, Aruba, Tuscany, Hanoi. In so many places, the spectacular everyday views of water, city streets, and mountains are drool-worthy.

Thinking of Bourdain, I really got into the Hanoi episode, where a single guy wanted a one-bedroom apartment in a real Vietnamese neighborhood. In his search (the places all came furnished), he found a fridge in one living room, and a shower in a closet off the bedroom, but the toilet and sink off the hallway.

A local friend helped him snag a beautiful, modern place and they negotiated the rent down to $360 a month from $450.

After you see the 3 properties, the people discuss the pros and cons of each place before picking one. I don’t think I’ve ever guessed the right property, and they NEVER pick the one I would have chosen. Weird.

The show ends by following up a few months later, and the people are always deliriously happy in their new home.

Sigh. It really makes you want to pack up and just go for it.


It’s a Boy! for Zenyatta

March 9, 2012

By Adele

At 10:10 p.m. on March 8, Zenyatta gave birth to a 130-lb. bouncing baby colt. His father is Bernardini, but the boy looks just like his mother.

Like mother, like son. (Photo - Ann Moss)

Both Zenyatta and Bernardini are former Horses of the Year, so the little guy has plenty of good genes on both sides.

Bernardini was the horse who won the Preakness Stakes in 2006. That was the infamous race where the favorite, Barbaro, sustained a leg injury that proved fatal in spite of his heroic, year-long effort to heal.

Motherhood really seems to agree with Zenyatta. I’ve never seen her looking so contented. Soon she’ll be dancing around the paddock, teaching her little guy her special moves.

If you’ll remember, the rival Zenyatta never raced, Rachel Alexandra, also gave birth to a colt on January 22, who still hasn’t been named. Stone Street Farm, where he lives with Rachel, ran a contest but haven’t announced a winner yet.

Here’s some video of Rachel romping with her colt.

Now that their racing rivalry is over, I hope Zenyatta and Rachel can soon set up play dates for their boys. Then they can sit back and reminisce about their racing days, when Zenyatta was Queen of the West Coast while Rachel ruled in the East.

We wish Zenyatta and her colt the best!


Finally, a Cat Runs for U.S. Senate

March 7, 2012

By Max

UPDATE, March 8 – Cats Working has been contacted by Hank’s Campaign Manager and Hank HAS AGREED TO AN INTERVIEW. So stay tuned…

I am not making this up. A 9-year-old Maine Coon from Springfield, Va., named Hank is running as an independent, challenging former Virginia governors Tim Kaine (D) and George Allen (R) for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Jim Webb (D).

If cats had the vote, Hank would win in a litterslide.

Here’s what Hank says about his decision to run on a platform of jobs growth and economic prosperity…

“In this time of austerity, of threats to families’ livelihoods and to our civil liberties, it is essential that we choose the right leader. Our situation is too dire to risk placing this important job in the wrong paws, and that is why I have decided to run for U.S. Senate for the great Commonwealth of Virginia. If I had to sum up my feelings for Virginia’s future, I would have to say: Meow.”

No Beltway double-speak, no insulting “macaca” malarkey. Just an honest cat with humble roots who wants to help everyone get a fair shake. Because we all know, when people have good jobs, we get cat food without fillers and byproducts — and more toys and treats.

It appears Hank’s campaign has already gotten under somebody’s fur. A Super Pac called Canines for a Feline-Free Tomorrow is running this attack ad full of baseless innuendo about Hank’s character…

But Hank hasn’t stooped to mud-slinging (probably because of all the unsavory licking needed later) and is keeping his message positive. Here’s his latest ad…

We heartily endorse Hank for Senate and will follow his campaign closely and keep you informed.


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