Thursday, April 23, 2009

Now I have to choose a favorite?!


"Life is good." - Anonymous

We all know the saying, but it's not always true. Sometimes life is tough. And if you don't mind me comparing my life to a box of chocolates, it looks like I just picked out a poop chocolate.

That's right. While watching the NBA Playoffs on TNT, I learned that there is a new Tyler Perry sitcom on TBS: Meet the Browns. This wouldn't be a problem if I weren't already hooked to House of Payne. However, since I am hooked to the latter, the former presents me with an uncomfortable dilemma: pick a favorite.

Now you may think I'm being irrational here. I could like both shows, right? I don't know. I think that sounds difficult.

You also may be questioning my expertise in discerning between which show is my favorite, citing the fact that I've never watched a full episode of either show. I don't think that's fair, though. I've looked at the fronts of many books in my time and decided on whether or not to read them - and I think I've been pretty accurate with my decisions if I might say so myself.

So where does this leave me? It leaves me at an uncomfortable intersection. An intersection of a happy life in which just one TP show that I can jokingly follow exists and of a conflicted life where I have to jokingly choose between one of two TP shows.

Some may argue that this whole blog entry is irrelevant because if anyone is blogging at 1:20 AM on this specific topic, he or she cannot be taken seriously.

To that I say, "I am serious, and don't call me Shirley" (reference of The Office reference of Airplane!)

Monday, April 6, 2009

In Defense of Augustus


Lately I've been hearing a lot of comments such as the following:

"Caesar Augustus? Yeah, I know of him. What a dick."

Or:

"Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus - a good emperor? I don't think so!"

Comments such as these frustrate me. Why all of a sudden are many people openly criticizing one of the greatest politicians the world has ever seen? I mean, if you want to know all the things he did, you could check out the Res Gestae Divi Augusti; but he wrote that so it's obviously a little biased. So why don't you hear it from me? That is, let me tell you a few reasons why you or people you know should cut this guy a break and maybe even show him a little respect.



First of all, in 27 B.C., Octavian returned full power to the Roman Senate and relinquished control of the Roman provinces and their armies. Following that, he was given the names "Augustus" and "Princeps" and even awarded a golden shield with the words virtus, pietas, clementia, iustitia inscribed on it. Pretty neat, huh? Yeah, that's what I thought. If you think that is cool, check this out: In 23 B.C., Augustus was granted the power of a tribune!

Secondly, the guy was a great politician. Don't take my word for it, hear it straight from the academic source Wikipedia: "In 28 BC, he melted down 80 silver statues erected in his likeness and in honor of him, an attempt of his to appear frugal and modest" (Wikipedia).

Last but not least, the Prima Porta is an important statue and monument depicting him.

In conclusion, I think I've put to rest any arguments that critics of August may have. He may have died on August 19, A.D. 14, but his legacy lives on. So the next time I'm on the subway or in a deli and I hear the person next to me say, "Oh my gosh - Octavian was such a douchebag!", I will be very angry and probably direct that person to this blog entry.

Feel free to comment on this post with thoughts of your own regarding the great Roman emperor.

As for me, I'm out.

-JWH