Sunday, August 31, 2008

Tired of Politics for Today, Reflecting on Peace

"It is isolation that is critical to war. You can't be abusive when you realize your connectedness."
-David Kadlec

Jon Stewart - On the VP Pick

Just too funny not to share.

The Sunday Morning Muse, August 31, 2008

Gag Alert.
I've already seen that image of Sarah Palin holding a gun 10 times. And that Down's Syndrome baby? Heard the story at least 6 times and she was only nominated on Friday. I may have to impose a TV blackout until the election. I feel really sick. It's about images over substance. Period. And my stomach can't take it. Can things get any lower?
Why not nominate me!! I'm from a swing state and I have a Bachelor's degree! (I didn't win any beauty contests, but I clean up good!) Shucks. Hey.... how about you handle all that foreign policy..... like wars, and the Mideast... and that Taliban thing, and I'll just be your Erin Brockovich and toss my hair, balance that baby on my hip, point a gun with my other hand, and go after corruption.
All women should be insulted. This is one former Hillary supporter who "gets" it. McCain must think that women are interchangeable... just put one out there and we'll vote for her, to hell with what we really believe in and what Hillary championed and worked so hard for.Does he think we are that stupid? And the obvious pandering for the single issue gun votes and single issue anti-abortion votes at the expense of the possible future leadership of this country.
And poor Lieberman. That lead balloon fell pretty hard. It would have been a maverick choice.
But it's back to Guns and God....
Shame on you McCain.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Michael Palin- Lumberjack Song

I really have no comment on this. (long lost relative of the VP pick?)

Friday, August 29, 2008

38 Million People Watched the Speech . .

More people watched Obama speak from a packed stadium in Denver on Thursday than watched the Olympics opening ceremony in Beijing, the final "American Idol" or the Academy Awards this year, Nielsen Media Research said Friday.

That is amazing! I hope they all vote...and go out and get 10 more people to vote. (Or is that too many people?) I'm very proud of him. It was a great speech. And the stadium full of 80 thousand people did so much to heighten the experience, adding to the excitement of this historical event. I got goosebumps toward the end. . . even PAT BUCHANAN liked it.
Later I reflected on how my choice for President was a journey that meant compromises. I was a Kucinich die hard Democrat..... who moved to Hillary (after much back and forth between her and Obama.) ... but I got behind Obama soon after he was nominated because I am smart enough to know that getting a Democrat elected in the fall is more important than anything else. We simply can't go on like the last 8 years. And yes, that's even more important than simply putting a woman in the White House. (I guess ya know I ain't falling for McCain's half baked Alaskan scheme of putting a woman on the ballot to try to appeal to undecided women. She's no Hillary.)
A curmudgeon-like 72 year old McCain who can't/won't operate a computer, (translation: intellectually UN-curious), and a 44 year old former beauty queen mother of 5 who hasn't even served 2 years as a governor, who no one has heard of, whose claim to fame is being a mayor in an Alaskan town of 6000 people. But wait! She's anti-abortion---- and pro gun!!!!!! She's our gal. (snark) This is the best Republicans can do? A heartbeat away.... a 72 year old heartbeat away from being POTUS.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Clara Barton Said. . .

I have an almost complete disregard of precedent, and a faith in the possibility of something better. It irritates me to be told how things have always been done. I defy the tyranny of precedent. I go for anything new that might improve the past.

--Clara Barton, Founder of the Red Cross

(Photo: circa 1851)

If I had to Write a Speech for the Convention. . .

I'm writing this before THE BIG SPEECH tonight at the Democratic National Convention. I can't imagine sitting down with a blank sheet of paper trying to come up with a speech to accept the nomination for President. It would be agonizing. Here is the thought process I'd put into it:
1. Well, I better not talk more than a half hour because I'll lose my voice...and everyone's attention. Keep it short. Short words, short sentences. Short. Don't Rabbit Trail all over the place.
2. I suppose I could look at all the "old" speeches and see what they did. But this is a two edged sword...because even if I don't intentionally plagiarize something, I may still unintentionally do so because my own ideas about what to say will naturally be in the same ball park, since these speeches say basically the same things but in different ways. I did this in third grade. I had to write song for music class and it sounded curiously like some a minuet I learned playing piano.
3. Do I drum up personal hard luck stories of people whom I have met on the campaign trail? (You know... like the poor mother in Idaho with 10 kids and a poodle who lives on SSI since she got hurt from her job at the plant before it closed and 2000 people were left jobless....and then her husband got killed when their trailer fell on him when he was trying to put in new copper pipe after thieves stole the old pipes?)
4. Do I tell people what I really want to do with the country or hold back a bit so as not to upset my political enemies who are chomping at the bit to criticize every idea I have and every word I say?
5. How much religion should I throw in? The whole God Bless America thing is wearing thin on me. It seems self serving somehow. Maybe Tiny Tim's "God Bless us--- Everyone." But that's plagiarism. Oh well.
6. And how much personal stuff do I put in? Thanking people is a slippery slope. You always forget someone.


7. Bill Clinton was always good with a clever turn of the phrase... like last night's 'power of example' versus 'example of our power' thing. And who can forget Kennedy- "Ask not what your country can do for you--ask what you can do for your country!" Aunt Millie picked up on that and I remember as a kid, whenever Millie would get ready to leave our house after a party, she'd say... "Well, I'd better go...and see what I can do for my country!" And she'd laugh.... usually she was full of Schlitz beer, so it was funny when she said it. Probably not as funny reading it here.


8. Finally, I'd need a big ending. The media is so overhyped on everything, it's hard to really suprize anyone anymore, or come across with something genuinely new. Maybe that's why they all just still go with God Bless America, anyway. I'd probably end up saying that, too, simply because I have spent so much time writing it, that I just want to get done.

Let It Rain- Clapton

Finally get a day off...and it rains.

Bill Clinton Says. . .

My fellow Democrats, 16 years ago, you gave me the profound honor to lead our party to victory and to lead our nation to a new era of peace and broadly shared prosperity.

Together, we prevailed in a hard campaign in which Republicans said I was too young and too inexperienced to be commander-in-chief.


Sound familiar?


CLINTON: It didn’t work in 1992, because we were on the right side of history. And it will not work in 2008, because Barack Obama is on the right side of history.


(and the best line of the speech...)

"People the world over," Clinton said, "have always been more impressed by the power of our example than by the example of power."

Monday, August 25, 2008

Christians and Pagans

It's far from December, but I had this song in my head today and found it. Enjoy!Maybe I can learn it on the guitar by Solstice.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Sunday Morning Muse, August 24, 2008

The last weekend before Labor Day Weekend. Do you feel that urge to grab onto the last few days of summer and NOT LET GO... Like.. WAIT... I didn't get to do all those things I said I was gonna do.... WAIT.. COME BACK!
Today is the rite of passage for the airconditioner. Back to the garage. The hose will be out a while longer... and yes, I still have the one with the hole in it that went wild with water pressure and sprayed me all over when I was scaring off the groundhog. I've held my finger over that hole all summer...waiting for hoses to go on sale to buy a new one. Not another cheap one, but a real hose that doesn't kink up... EVERY TIME.
I picked blueberries for the last time yesterday. I hope that all the blueberries I ate this summer stay in my system a long time... I can just feel those antioxidants racing around in me, protecting me from all kinds of illnesses. Speaking of which, it'll be flu shot time soon. The news went out this week that this flu shot will be better than last year's (which I didn't get) that didn't do much at all. I'll probably pass on it again this year. I know, people say you can't get the flu from the flu shot, but it's an anecdotal thing. Everyone knows someone who GOT SICK after getting a flu shot. I know at least three. Maybe not real sick, or deathly sick, but none the less, they didn't feel well. You know. Because You Know People like this.
Two more groundhogs have showed up. They may get a pass, too. We'll see. They've already gotten to most of the sunflowers and I don't care about the beans anymore. I'm beaned out.
So that's it today. One more week of summer. Take a few days off if you can and enjoy it.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Joe Biden Says. . .

"Let's just be smart this time. I'm looking for smart."
-Senator Joe Biden

(He sounds just like ... me. That's what I have said all along, but I was talking about boyfriends.)


A Saturday Rant

"Just so we are clear- visiting your grandmother while vacationing in Hawaii, the state where you were you were born- elitist.

Meeting the millionaire heiress daughter (who you will soon begin an affair with and divorce your first wife and then go on and buy a ton of houses) in Hawaii and then going on and honeymooning in Hawaii
– not elitist."


Read more here. There is a link on Crooks and Liars, to a CNN story that is very revealing about McCain and the time in his life when he returned from Vietnam. I think what ticks me off the most after watching it, is that this man cheated on his wife with an heiress who was 17 years younger than him, (after a string of affairs prior to that,) lies to this young beautiful heiress about his age (says this right on camera..and then smiles broadly.... like some frat boy trying unsuccessfully to be cool), AND lies later about when they started seeing each other to cover his obvious infidelity. He looks pretty uncomfortable when he is presented with paperwork showing that when he applied for his new marriage license, he wasn't divorced yet....


"I take full responsibility for the breakup of my marriage"....(he spouts his talking point....) (and later, again) ... "the responsibility is mine..."(and then this extremely inappropriate SMILE again, trying to signal the reporter to move on...) I think this mans uses these smiles to get through his anger at being confronted. Really I do. It's unnerving. But he continues to lie about it. Why not be honest about something that happened 30 years ago? "Yeah, you got me. I cheated on my wife, went after young girls for a lot of years, found a rich one and married her. That's my story."

You can even watch Cindy squirm and lie when she tries to make a case that McCain had been separated for 6 years before they got involved, when in real life they dated for 9 months WHILE HE WAS STILL LIVING WITH HIS WIFE.

If these were the Clintons this would be a PRIME TIME SPECIAL... complete with interviews of every woman he ever looked twice at....crying pathetically for the camera and calling him every name in the book.

It's the FREE PASS ON ALL THIS BY THE PRESS that bothers me more than McCain's hound-dogging 30 years ago. I don't really give a rat's behind about all this, as I have said a million times. Personal lives should be off limits. I don't care what you do in the bedroom, just don't screw this country. BUT C'MON.

The one consolation is the Right wingnuts can't push family values down our throats in this election.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Looking for that Perfect Vice President

Matchmaker Matchmaker, make me a match
Find me a find, catch me a catch
Matchmaker Matchmaker
Look through your books
and make me a perfect match!

For Mama, make him a scholar,
For Papa, make him rich as a king
For me? Well, I wouldn't holler
If he were as handome as anything!

Matchmaker Matchmaker
Make me a match, Find me a find,
Catch me a catch
Night after night in the dark I'm alone
So find me a match of my own.

(with a nod to Fiddler on the Roof)

Matchmaker Matchmaker Make Me a Match

This whole VP thing... well, it used to be it wasn't a big deal at all. The only job the VP has is to break a tie in the Senate and take over should the President's heart stop beating. (Wait, that part IS the big deal.... we need someone smart and like-minded who understands what it is like to be a good understudy. Ready at all times.... but backstage.) It's a really big job with a lot of perks, but... you are basically supposed to be in the shadow of the President. After all the President makes the big decisions. And has the red phone....(Is it really red? Or is it the red button? Or is it all Cold War BS I'm remembering?)

The media is calling the VP slot the one who does the "attack job." The VP is supposed to attack the other the dirty work, with the Presidential candidate staying "above the fray." Maintaining that Presidential-ness and oh-so-becoming sense of decency, while the VP goes for the throat. Is this really what our electing process has become? And the hype is nauseating me. I haven't checked, but I bet Las Vegas bookies are taking odds on this "Veep-stakes" somehow for people who care to bet.

When all is said and done, I hope we can get back to talking about better health care, saving Social Security, (I'm getting older by the minute), ending the war, better educating our children and my favorite, MORE MONEY FOR THE SPACE PROGRAM.

The act of governing itself isn't as glamorous as the horse race of Presidential politics, or the "Veep-stakes," but those issues surely deserve more TV time and public discussion.

Remembering John Lee Hooker

John Lee was born on this date in 1917. It's been seven years since he died.I would love to have put up a V@n Mor#rison video here to share with you all. He did some nice duets with John Lee.But of course THAT won't happen thanks to a group of lawyers whom I will not name here. Someone put up audio of a nice tune here. You can listen to it unless the Sheri$$ff takes it down.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Leningrad Cowboys with the Red Army Choir

Okay, I'll just say a few things. This is a Finnish Rock Band. What is amazing to me is that this video has over 1.5 MILLION hits. Sweet Home Alabama must strike a chord in people. This group also does Stairway to Heaven but I'm just afraid to click on it.
PS... Be sure not to miss the BIG ENDING. C'mon the whole video is only 2 minutes or so... oh...and I'm in love with the guy at 1:17 on the tape. He is so damn cute!

Learn to Cheer in Chinese

I tried on random nights or weekend afternoons to watch the Olympics. WITHOUT FAIL, everytime I grabbed my bowl of cereal, put my carcass on the couch and resolved to watch, BEACH VOLLEYBALL was on. Every time. Isn't it over yet? Strange.

How DO You Pronounce Beijing?

So, I'm lying on the couch watching the Nightly News on NBC. Brian Williams said..."reporting LIVE here in BAY-JING.."
What? Did he just screw up? I waited.... damn. He just said it again. Did someone change the pronounciation of Bay ZHEENG?


I flipped around. Charlie Gibson said Zheeng. (oops... that's CHARLES Gibson, to you. He is anchoring the news. When he is not, he is plain old Charlie. Just like they tried Katherine Couric on for size....then went back to Katie, but I digress as usual.)


So I googled. And found this. Brian Williams is right, it's BAY JING. Imagine that. The place used to be Peking. Then in 1949 it became Beijing, and we've pronounced it wrong all this time.

Not me of course, I'm much too young.


Sunday, August 17, 2008

Katharine Hepburn Said. . .

Sometimes I wonder if men and women really suit each other. Perhaps they should live next door and just visit now and then.

-Katharine Hepburn

The Sunday Morning Muse, August 17, 2008


My old man's a white old man
And my old mother's black.
If ever I cursed my white old man
I take my curses back.
If ever I cursed my black old mother
And wished she were in hell,
I'm sorry for that evil wish
And now I wish her well
My old man died in a fine big house.
My ma died in a shack.
I wonder where I'm going to die,
Being neither white nor black?

--Langston Hughes

This poem jumped out at me as I was reading a book by Wayne W. Dyer, called Wisdom of the Ages. It's a book full of poems and philosophies from some of the greatest thinkers. I open it time and again and read a passage. It's one of the books that will never leave my library.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Wuthering Heights--Kate Bush

I remember reading Wuthering Heights in high school...and later watching the movie. I think it was in black an white. Either that or the movie was just so dark.... out there on the moors.The love story of Heathcliff and Cathy.
Heathcliff: "Catherine Earnshaw, may you not rest so long as I live on! I killed you. Haunt me, then! Haunt your murderer! I know that ghosts have wandered on the Earth. Be with me always. Take any form, drive me mad, only do not leave me in this dark alone where I cannot find you. I cannot live without my life! I cannot die without my soul."

Some People Should Take Yoga Class

The past few years, I can't tell you how many people told me to go take a Yoga class. My doctor, my (former) chiropractor, my massage therapist, my friends, a former neighbor, etc.
It wasn't an easy plunge. I've put it off two years. And, when I did decide to go, I almost missed the first class because I spent a half hour trying to decide what to wear. My big fear was that I would be in a class of skinny mini's all in lycra, balanced like flamingoes, and I would be this sweaty nerd woman in a big shirt and shorts, looking like Janis from the Sopranos from that fateful episode when she met Richie Aprile. (Who she later killed, but that's more than you need to know here.)

It couldn't have been further from reality. I'm fitting right in. It's not about the clothes. Or about anyone else. It's about being comfortable and paying attention to your own body and the signals it gives you. It's about focus, and in the end, it is about making peace with what you can or cannot do and working toward your own goals.
The stretches are simply great. My sense of balance is improving with every class. And, this is harder to describe, but it is a nice sense of community....being in a darkened room with other like minded people, going through a series of stretches and poses, and being separate, yet together in a common experience. Suki first mentioned this aspect to me. It really is different than going to a gym with headphones on-- (or worse yet, hooked into the TV attached to the treadmill,) or beating up the stairmaster and not really interacting with anyone.
As expected, you get out of something what you put into it. That's why, as excited as I am about yoga, I'm starting to see that yoga isn't for everyone. For example, I spotted one young woman who wandered in and I sensed immediately that she was not going to stick it out. She looked like a busty glamour gal, with full makeup and heavy earrings, and a look of "okay, let's just see if this does it for me," impatiently waiting for the class to begin, fussing with her clothes. There are a few women like this I have seen. They flit from class to class.... trying to find the magic bullet to help them lose weight. Will it be boot camp? Spinning? Zumba class? They take classes and quit and move on.
She didn't last 15 minutes.
Teenagers with their MP3 players and phones, games and whatever else, have such short attention spans. I've seen a few unhook themselves from technology and come on in. Sadly, they leave without saying why. They don't have to. They are bored. It seems they lost the ability to focus, or to just be quiet for very long.
But for the few who remain, the class is addicting. I have my own mat now. And I am wearing a nice stretchy black outfit..... because it works for me. I feel good in it, and I can pose with the best of them, without fear or embarrassment.
P.S... the class was not full of skinny mini types contorting like circus performers. There were normal people from all walks of life. The people who benefit most, the instructor said, are those who really aren't the most flexible.
Because they improve.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Billy Joel Says...

I've reached the age where competence is a turn-on.
-Billy Joel

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Dance Me to the End of Love

I checked, and I can't believe I haven't posted this Leonard Cohen video before. This is one of the ones I wore out playing it over and over again on VHS.


Monday, August 11, 2008

My Life as a Low Attention Voter, Part III

I debated about doing this one more time. Audience fatigue or some such thing, but a series is a series....
The obvious headliner is John Edwards.Much to the glee of one of my Enquirer-loving friends, yes, he had an affair.I know the so called Main Stream Media that right wingnuts lament all the time about was a little slow to report it, but heck, you can't just "quote" the Enquirer, can you? (Unless you are Fox News....but I digress.) The jury is out on the little baby's daddy. The woman he met in the hotel now has some pretty nice digs to live in courtesy of someone who has money, but I don't know who that person really is. Bottom Line: I guess Edwards is off the short list for VP.
I hear Joe Biden's name mentioned a lot for the VP slot. I think he spoke at my college for some reason long ago. He had more hair then, but if it was him, he was pretty good. Obama-Biden sounds good, too. You have to consider how a name sounds. Really. Think of the Bumper Stickers.
God-knows-who Old Man McCain will pick.I hope not the Mormon with the magic underwear. (I posted about that a while back.) It will obviously be someone younger, because you can't find many people older now that Jessie Helms is dead.(snark)
Obama went to see his grandmother in Hawaii. Of course the right wing nuts are calling him elitist and saying he should have vacationed in ... say, Florida? That Hawaii sends the wrong message. Yeah, like McCain going to Bike Week. The only way he can draw a crowd is to show up where one already is, I guess.
George Bush had it rough at the Olympics. He went as a self proclaimed "number one fan of the USA." Probably thinking, I'll shake a few hands.... land a few high fives with the basketball team, watch the swimmers, say hi to the Chinese President, and go home. Easy Gig. NOT. It didn't exactly look like him and Russian President Putin were sharing popcorn. I'm sure old George gave him many good reasons to pull out of Georgia. The Peach crop would be utterly destroyed by the tanks. (snark)
The snark is overtaking the news, so I'll try to put cynicism aside for now. You are now up do date.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Mama, But Weer All Crazee Now- SLADE

The Sunday Morning Muse, August 10, 2008

Leading up to the start of the Olympics there were a lot of negative news stories about Beijing. The pollution, the closed factories, the displaced families after places were torn down to make room for new buildings, the hardship of the countryfolk who must conserve water to make it available for Beijing.
I caught myself giving in to the negative. Sheesh. Why would anybody pick Beijing
to host the Olympics? Then, when I heard about surface to air missles on standby...just in case.... the old terrorism fear starting... creeping into my imagination. Maybe this wasn't a "safe" choice.
But then I watched the Opening Ceremonies. A perfect 10. Amazing. Stupendous. A creative balance of present and past. A triumph of the blending of high technology with the talents of thousands of people performing out of love of their country. And they performed with honor and respect and courtesy for all their guests. It truly was a coming out party for China. A billion people strong.
It made me.... hopeful somehow. After all the negative images we have seen, stories of incredible hardship, government crackdowns, the treatment of Tibet, etc. All that faded away for a moment, and I retreated to the wonder of it all, and of course the beauty. It was like discovering that the bully down the block has a butterfly collection.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Incase You Missed This. . . Go Paris!

See more funny videos at Funny or Die

Laurie Anderson Says. . .

When love is gone, there's always justice. And when justice is gone, there's always force. And when force is gone, there's always Mom. Hi, Mom!
Laurie Anderson (Oh Superman)

Monday, August 4, 2008

Back on the Chain Gang

I've always wanted to sing like Chrissie Hynde.There's just something...I don't know...earthy and honest about her. (THINK: pretty much the opposite of everyone you hear out there today. Nothing staged or fake.)

Did you know she was born in Akron, Ohio? She went to Kent State...and was there during the infamous shootings according to Wikipedia.


Sunday, August 3, 2008

The Sunday Morning Muse, August 3, 2008

This morning's muse: August
The local corn is ready. Vegetable stands are popping up around town with fresh tomatoes, peppers, cukes. Fresh peaches. Amish children with straw hats on the corner.
There's a whole aisle of school supplies in most stores. Fall sweaters for sale. The clouds are starting to look different. Puffier. (Oh no-not fall just yet!) The sky is brilliant blue.
The lilies are starting to die. (But I still got some nice pictures.) I bought mums for the front of the house. Sunflowers are looking great. The grass doesn't need cut as often. Butter flies and honeybees. Hummingbirds and crows. (And a three and half foot snake crawled into my garage yesterday, after getting sun in the street.)
Road crews and detours. The smell of tar and asphalt. Orange barrel capital of the world. Lots of motorcycles out. Concerts in the park. People washing cars. Yard sales.
Sitting on porches, drinking beer. Kids in pools. Lemonade.
Get out and enjoy it while it lasts.

Kelly Bundy, Car Model

I read this morning that actress Christina Applegate was diagnosed with breast cancer. They caught it in the early stages. She will forever be Kelly Bundy. I love this clip of her trying out for a modeling gig at a car show.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Smoke on the Water

Machine Head. Didn't everybody have this album?

Friday, August 1, 2008

Annie Dillard Says. . .

"Because how we spend our days, of course, is how we spend our lives." -Annie Dillard

A Friday Evening Muse

I lost a bar a few years ago and never found another that felt quite the same. In the grand scheme of things, maybe this doesn't seem important, but then in some ways it really was. I took it for granted back then. It was a nice Italian place.The owners were always there to greet you, and on Fridays the regular crowd was treated to free Pasta Fagioli from a big pot on a table at the end of the bar. For some of us that was dinner on Fridays. Oh some nights we'd order real sandwiches or a plate of pasta, fried zucchini, fried eggplant.. but I digress.
What really made it special wasn't just the food. It was the feeling that you could walk in and just know that in awhile someone else would be there you knew, or the owners would stop by to chat or let you try a bit of their homemade wine. Sometimes we'd catch up on gossip or talk about the new play in town or local politics. Then a bunch would go sit out on the patio and just watch the sun go down and take in the night breeze. The bar was right next to the Playhouse, so Friday nights brought in a variety of people-- actors and actresses, the stage crew, people in from out of town to watch the show, etc. The "regulars" consisted of a diverse group of all ages and walks of life--the political bigwigs, a very friendly and talkative group of social workers who came after work, a couple of local radio personalities, musicians, a few local eccentrics (one who claimed to have been at Woodstock), and even some people who were almost quite literally "on the street." The place reflected the community.
When the owners had to sell the bar, the crowd went their separate ways. I remember the "last" sort of normal Friday night there when people started "lobbying" for the next bar. But it was useless. The gang split up. Fractured. Dissipated. Never was the same. Thinking about it, we were never really a "gang" of people. Few of us really saw each other outside of Friday nights at the bar. Occasionally I see a few familiar faces from back then, when I'm out at other bars now. A smile, a wave here or there. . .
But there's no more free Pasta Fagioli on Friday night.