Monday, November 28, 2016

According to the President-Elect,

A friendship like this should never had happened. 

But it did.

Andy is a former boss, a devout Christian, a non-IPA quaffer, a fifth generation Hispanic-American and a devoted husband, father and now, grandfather. 

In other words he's everything I'm not. The one commonality we share is experiencing the pangs of prejudice. Andy for his skin color and name, me for my religion. 

How did this friendship evolve?

It began in 2013, when I was living in Tucson, AZ. 
A round of the World Baseball Classic was scheduled to take place in nearby Phoenix. Wow! International baseball a mere 90 miles away. I had to go! 

As usual, I went fishing for company. I shot an email out to all the baseball fans I knew. (I always go fishing for company, but usually come back with an empty creel) I got a base hit. It was from Andy. "Let me ask the Mrs. about this," was his response. (I told you he is a devoted husband!) 

A day later, Dora gave Andy the "steal sign." He was free to go. She was supportive enough to book his flight and our hotel rooms near Chase Field. What a woman! 

I picked Andy up at the Phoenix airport on a Friday afternoon in March, 2013. A few hours later we walked into the stadium. 

Team Mexico was playing Team USA. The crowd was mostly from "South of the Border." Mariachi bands were all about. The eagle, serpent and cactus Tri-color flag of Mexico was everywhere. The whole scene was incredibly festive and very International. We were both smiling.

When Andy's "Brown Brothers" saw us together, I could almost hear their thoughts. "Senor! What are you doing with the Gringo?!!!" We were definitely the Odd Couple. 

It was a well played game with Team Mexico coming out on top. Andy and I headed back to our hotel rooms. Once again, we ran the gauntlet of "Senor! What are you doing with the Gringo?" 

Some questions are best left unanswered. 

After three days of baseball, hiking and Happy Hours (me with a few IPAs, Andy with a few soft drinks), the bond was sealed. My old Boss got enrolled as a "brother from another mother" to me. 

If a First Generation American-Jew and a Hispanic Christian can become friends, think of the possibilities. 

I'm Jeff Sambur and I am running for President in 2020 on a platform devoid of hate, bigotry, intolerance and wall building between counttries. Please climb aboard.

DTCP in 20

Sunday, November 20, 2016

My 2020 Presidential Campaign Begins..

with the traditional "Good Luck"  kiss from a baby. 

After all, if a Not-Self-Made Billionaire game show host can become the President, why can't I?
(I guess I'll need a First Lady too.)

I'll approach this campaign with a "We the People"  attitude instead of the recent "Us vs. Them" mode.My speeches will be heavy on American history lessons. I'll talk about our Nation's positives (IE: The U.S. Constitution of 1787, The Antiquities Act of 1906, the Social Security Act of 1935, the Wilderness Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Clean Air and Water Acts of 1970). These ideas displayed our ability to think ahead of the game. A few of these Acts showed our compassionate side. They are clear examples of America at its best. 

I'll also speak about our Nation's digressions; lest we forget to be ever vigilant when Un-American ideas become mainstream. (IE: Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, Dawes Severalty Act of 1887 (Dismantling of Native American Tribes), National Origins Act of 1924 (discriminating immigration quotas), and FDR's Executive Order 9066 of 1942 (Japanese American Exclusion and Internment Order). True Americans should bow their heads in shame when feral ideas become deeds. 

I'll quote Elder Statesmen and inspiring citizens. People who are not only Americans,  but understand what it means to BE an American. It's not about a Stars and Stripes lapel pin or the waving of Old Glory. It's deeper than that. It's about trying to do the right thing. 

My fellow Americans are more than Wonder Bread and Miracle Whip. We are bagels, enchiladas, sushi, dim sum, hummus, poulet aux noix, jambalaya, Indian fry bread, curry and collared greens. We are a diverse lot. Sameness is boring. That's what makes America great. 

I'll espouse a foreign policy based upon predictability and saneness. In a World where nine countries possess 16,300 nuclear weapons, it makes no sense to cause a foreign power to "flinch." (I hate winter, let alone the possibility of a nuclear winter.) 

True leadership is earned by mutual respect and not with "Big Stick" threats. 

I'll be the "Greenest" President since Theodore Roosevelt. I'll wield the powers of the Antiquities Act to place more wild lands under National Monument status. I'll pride myself in saving more acres from being bulldozed, paved and made into strip malls or subdivisions. Your Great-Great Grandkids will thank me. I want to keep America the Land of the Beautiful. 

Their will be no more talk about "draining the swamp." I'll work hard to save wetlands for our fish, fowl and furry friends. They have as much right to live here as we do. (Even though they don't vote or pay taxes.) 

I'll push for a return to teaching "Civics Classes." 

"Understanding of how participation in civic and political life can help citizens achieve individual and public goals. Civics is a subject that touches every person's life. It teaches the value of being an active citizen in the community."


I'll push for classes in just being civil. You don't have to love everyone, but it doesn't cost anything extra to be nice. I'll strive to bring back those long forgotten words such as, "Hello! Please! Excuse me! I'm sorry! and Thank You!" 
It's shouldn't be hard to hold a door open for anyone regardless of age, race, religion or sexual orientation, either. 

Lastly, I'll end this campaign announcement with a story.

Two Third Graders are chatting it up in Public School 97 in the Bronx. Suddenly the chubby little girl whips around to the buck toothed boy and says, "I can't talk to you anymore."
Shaken, the boy asked, "Why?" 
The answer? "My parents told me never to talk to Jews. You are Jewish." 

I was that buck toothed boy.

No child should ever experience a scenario such as this. Together we can break this cycle of hate and prejudice. I can't do this alone. I'll need your help.

Eureka! I have a slogan!

"Let's Make America Civil Again." 
(That ought to fit on a baseball hat.) 

I'm Jeff Sambur and I approve this message.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

"I'm pretty tired...

I think I'll go home now."

Forrest Gump 1994

I've been in steady motion since April, 2016. I'm not complaining. It's what I do to stave off boredom and sloth. Traveling keeps my mind off the fact, I'm an almost 62 year old single guy in a couples world. Besides, there's not much to blog about if I sit still. 

Before you think, Jeff is going mainstream, read Wikipedia's concept of travel.

"The origin of the word "travel" is most likely lost to history. ... It also states that the word comes from Middle English travailen, travelen (which means to torment, labor, strive, journey) and earlier from Old French travailler (which means to work strenuously, toil)."

See? Traveling all the time ain't easy!

That being said, I've learned the hard way (it's always the hard way with me) there's times to just sit still. Its Fall. The nights are too long and the days and too chilly to be camping out in Barley the Van. It's time to return to civilization. 

So...I'll be stationary for two whole months in Scottsdale, AZ. The city of the pressed designer jean crowd, the Nouveau Riche and assorted other beautiful people. There's so much wealth here the transients wear Gucci shoes when they panhandle. 

And now, there's one Wandering Wondering Jew residing here. I won't kid you. I stand out.  

It's an experiment. I've rented a comfy condo with a real kitchen complete with a stove and full sized refrigerator. There's a TV in the living room with a gazillion channels. I can recline in a La Z Boy lounger. I can watch "The Voice" and "Dancing with the Stars" too. I will be (for two months) a normal American. 

While I'm ensconced in this cushy life, I'll plan out 2017.

Here's some of the highlights for the coming year: New Zealand, World Baseball Classic, Grand Canyon National Park, Southwest Wilderness areas, Colorado for the summer, the Alps in the Fall, etc etc. 

Since I don't know nobody here, fun active visitors are most welcome. If you are just fun and not active, there's always Happy Hour and dinner. 

Hmmm?  I wonder what's on TV tonight?

These photos are from my last six months of travel. No dust was settling under these trail runners...

Cheers from Scottsdale, AZ,