Sunny Side Up

An unexpected look at what's good in the world.

With all this ranting going on in this week's issue, we should probably take some time to look on the bright side of things and maybe count our blessings. Not everything is gloom and doom. There is plenty of good out there to celebrate; you just have to look for it.

For example:

· Not all country music is about pickup trucks, bowling and women named Wanda. A big hit climbing the charts these days offers valuable political insight. In the song, "Have You Forgotten?" singer Darryl Worley skillfully argues that since we were attacked by Saudi Arabians who were led by a guy who lived in Afghanistan, we should attack Iraq. Such logic and insight ... and a steel guitar, to boot!

· Not everybody who owns a cell phone talks on it while driving. It only seems that way. In fact, a majority of people are still able to get in their cars and drive somewhere without having to suck on the 21st-century version of the electronic teat. And apparently, a slim majority of people is also still able to go into a grocery store and pick out items without having to contact the Mother Voice on the other end and ask things like, "Did I come here to get soup or potato chips?" Those majorities are dwindling, however.

· George W. Bush isn't going to be president forever.

· Not all large women who drive pickup trucks with Dallas Cowboy stickers on them are rude, boorish drivers who will swerve in and out of traffic, flip you off and then take up two parking spaces with their big, stupid-ass trucks. But most are.

· Congressman (ahem) Raul Grijalva hasn't said or done anything stupid enough to make the rest of the country think about rescinding Arizona's statehood. Yet.

· Not all vegetarians are annoying proselytizers who try to convert those among us who are actually happy. Some of them might have been driven to vegetarianism by a bad pork chop incident. Still others might really like producing green urine all the time. And I have no doubt that one or two of them actually like the taste of vegetables.

As for those Jojoba Witnesses who are constantly preaching the Green Gospel, the rest of us will just have to be content in the knowledge that they're not going to outlive us and that we're going to have a lot more fun along the way.

· Not all bumper stickers are either vulgar or boring. Just the other day, I saw one that said, "Fat People Are Harder To Kidnap."

· 24, the best show on TV, has been renewed for another season.

· The construction on Interstate 10 and Interstate 19 isn't going to last another 20 years. Just into the foreseeable future. And when the project is completed, it will make it easier for those unsafe NAFTA trucks to come up from Mexico and cut people off when merging onto I-10.

· Not all rap music consists of men demeaning women. There's a new CD by Eve that has a whole bunch of songs by a woman ... demeaning women.

· Every minute that Ted Nugent spends on TV talk shows is a minute that he's not torturing people with his music. (For those of you on the opposite side of the political spectrum, go back over that sentence and substitute "Janeane Garofalo" for Nugent and "movies" for music.)

· The 15 minutes of fame for rapper 50 Cent are almost up. Yes, that's "50 Cent," not Cents. Or sense. And 50 is pronounced "Fitty." He's famous this week because he has a CD out in which he sucks up to his mentor, Eminem, and gets all da womens in a frenzy with his romantic come-on line, "I'm into having sex; I'm not into makin' love."

He brags about having nine bullet wounds in his body and says that he used his first check from the record label to buy crack cocaine. And who said that there would never be another Marvin Gaye?

· Not all athletes who use ephedra are doing so to cut corners in getting in shape or to gain an unfair advantage. One or two actually caught colds.

· The Tucson City Council will not have the final say on the war in Iraq.

· The new mall at Campbell Drive and Sunrise Drive will not cause traffic problems for those people who have built their houses halfway up the Catalinas. We can all breathe a sigh of relief after learning that.

· Surveys show that the United States is one of the least favorite destinations for French tourists.

· WB TV here in Tucson, Channel 58, will have its own local newscast at 9 p.m. weeknights. This is cool. Another voice is always welcome, even if it has the initials "WB" associated with it. The only drawback is that the newscast will originate from the KOLD Channel 13 studios. Engineers are still trying to figure out whether Krista Gold's eye makeup will bleed over onto another channel.

· The Chrysler Classic of Tucson golf tournament was in town last week. There's an old saying that goes: "No Irishman is ever truly drunk as long as he can hold onto one blade of grass and keep from falling off the face of the Earth." Along those lines, as long as Tucson has a PGA golf tournament, we'll never truly be in the grips of a drought.

· While it might not seem so, Dennis Latimore's decision to quit the UA basketball team actually could have been more poorly timed. He could have waited until it was his turn to cut down the net after winning the national championship and then refused to take the scissors.

· Not everything that comes out of the mouth of that radio idiot Michael Savage (KNST 790-AM, weekday afternoons) is utterly useless. The other day he said "cheeseburger."

· Michael Jackson doesn't live in Tucson.

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