Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Yo-yo-yosemite!



This weekend I learned that chains are a pain in the ass.

And even though Yosemite is gorgeous in the winter (and the crowds are largely contained), it's better to go in the spring or summer simply because the days are longer, and there's no point after dark.

I also learned that my kid doesn't like snow.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Breathable air = fascism

There is so much hilarity in this Mercury News story, I envy the writer who had to work on Christmas Day to produce it.

Critics say the new law is government run amok.

Miller, the firewood seller, said he is particularly offended by the air district's complaint line, which allows people to report on neighbors. "That smacks of Marxism,'' he said.

...

Vince Noack, a retired contractor from Santa Clara, said: "I think this damn law is absolutely criminal. It's going to put hundreds of firewood people out of business at a time when the economy is already falling apart.''

As a young man in the U.S. Army, Noack said, he landed on the beaches of Normandy on D-Day and helped liberate two Nazi death camps. "And now I can't even light my fireplace when I want,'' Noack, 86, said with a sigh.

Galen Mitrzyk, a Palo Alto resident, said he agrees with Noack. "This man put his life on the line fighting fascism,'' said Mitrzyk, 53. "He has a right to burn a fire.''

Mitrzyk, who once worked in marketing for Hewlett-Packard, has been battling the air district, arguing that the new law is unconstitutional because fire is a key part of pagan rituals.

Mitrzyk, a neo-pagan pantheist, performs a fire-gazing ritual in his backyard in which he builds a small fire in a chiminea, a freestanding fireplace. He said the day he performs the ritual is based in part on the full moon, and if the lunar calendar happens to conflict with a Spare the Air alert he's going to start the fire whether the district likes it or not.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

So. Many. Toys.


These boys of ours got a ton of presents. The tree was surrounded by gifts, many of which generated an obscene number of twist ties. Arthur's big present (the only thing actually purchased for him by his parents) was a big, realistic fire truck made by a company called Bruder. I bought it at Talbots Toyland, the greatest toy store ever and one of the local businesses you should definitely support: free gift wrapping; free storage of the gift until it's time to give, in case you have spying eyes to worry about; and their prices are equal to or better than Toys R Us or Amazon. And they have all kinds of high-quality products NOT made in China.

Those Germans know how to make a toy fire truck, lemme tellya. And NO twist ties! Just slid right out of the box. I'm assuming this is because the Chinese toys would bust apart on the boat ride if they weren't lashed to their boxes. Not the German toys. Beer, birks, Beamers and toys. Good stuff.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Miscelany

I got all my final Christmas errands done this morning, thanks to the babysitting co-op!

I'm continuing to be glad I'm not traveling to the Midwest this month.

I usually get cash or a gift certificate from the kids I read to at a local day-care; this year I got candy.

I should really start a Redwood City news blog.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

iTunes weirdness

If you use iTunes, maybe you can clue me in on something. Is it normal for random songs that I've never heard of to pop up in my "library?" I only use iTunes about once a week, when I have opportunity to go into my office and close the door and get stuff done while someone else is wrangling my kids. Today was such a time and there they were, random songs from various genres and almost all were from artists I had never heard of.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Power of Vitamin C

Since I got over my walking pneumonia bout in October, I started taking 1000 milligrams a day of vitamin C supplements. My kids have been sick a few times since, and my husband had stomach flu Monday. I have been fine. Coincidence? I'm a believer.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A great cause for Redwood City school

A woman in my mothers club teaches low-income gradeschoolers and has set up a fundraiser so the kids can go on a field trip to a farm. Check it out and donate if you're moved!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Bunions

Apparently, I have bunions. A particularly bad one on my right foot. So to start with, the podiatrist created casts of my feet for orthotics, which may help the problem and postpone surgery for 1 to 5 years.

Having the surgery, which as far as I can tell is inevitable, would involve two days on my back and three weeks of no driving. Nice! Sounds like it'll be time for some of the relatives from the midwest to come out and help with the boys when that happens.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Illannoy

In the state of my birth (and the first 23 years of my life, god help me) the current governor was arrested today, and his predecessor remains in prison (at least for now).

Monday, December 08, 2008

No, you don't have to gain three pounds this month.

Here's my latest (yeah, I know it's a few weeks ago) story for the Mountain View Voice.

Stop holiday weight-gain before it starts!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

"Another Caucasian..."

The NYT on TBL and the renaissance of the White Russian.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Pop Report

It's been nearly four months since I decided to quit drinking diet soda. It's going ok. I'm down to just one on most days. But there was a domestic incident today related to pop.

You see, sometimes I stop at a gas station or convenience store or such to get a 20 ouncer. And one in eight of these has a buy-one-get-one-free coupon under the cap. So I ended up collecting four of these. So I had me a stash in the fridge. Now, my dear husband has been supportive of the pop-quiting. We haven't bought any cases of cans or bottles since I started my experiment, not even Splenda Coke.

Hubby: If you can have a stash that I can't drink from, then I want a stash that you can't drink from.
Me: But I'll drink from it!
Hubby: But you can't!
Me: But I will anyway!

He does not understand the power of addiction.

We decided that we would try not to have any more pop in the house. He can have a stash at work....

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!



Saturday, November 22, 2008

kiefer-rocks.com

How much does Kiefer rock? He was on the Tonight Show earlier this week talking about how he rides his bike around LOS ANGELES to pick up stuff like his scripts and puts them in the basket on his bike! *swoon!*

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Cub = moron

Apparently you have to have an IQ lower than the president's to be on the Cubs.

"Maybe we underestimated how prepared you have to be, how ready you have to be, especially in a five-game series," Dempster said. "It's like a short heavyweight bout. Ding, the bell is ringing, you've got to go."

So, did they not know that it was a five game series? That they had to win three whole games, or, more importantly, not lose that many? The year after being swept in the playoffs?

I don't want to hear any more effing excuses out of these losers. Thank you.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Packages you won't need a saw to open

The NYT has an article about the "frustration-free" packaging, which I am excited about...

“I shouldn’t have to start each Christmas morning with a needle nose pliers and wire cutters,” said Jeffrey P. Bezos, the father of four young children and founder of Amazon.com. “But that is what I do, I arm myself, and it still takes me 10 minutes to open each package.”

Friday, November 14, 2008

Well, this is just silly

So the Yes on 8 people are bitching and moaning because the No on 8 people are calling for boycotts of their businesses. Um, so? When they made donations to Yes on 8, they should have known those donations would become part of the public record. If they didn't know that, too bad for them. Witchhunt? Um, no. Boycotts are a totally legitimate political tool.

And, as always, I am tired or hearing the anti-gay-marriage people try to explain how they don't hate gay people, they just don't want them to be happy.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

TLC is weird

Am I the only one who's disturbed by the fact that there's a whole TV show about women picking out wedding dresses? "...what may be the single most important day of their lives..."?? Ugh.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Obama Wooo!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Frustration-free packaging!

This is just about the greatest idea ever. Those clam shells totally suck, and they are horrible for the environment. Yay Amazon!!!

Top Five Reasons to Vote

5) 8 = Hate

4) There's probably a local measure in your area that is actually really important.

3) "Just because I can see the moon doesn't make me an astronaut."

2) It's really pretty exciting that we get to vote for a black man for president for the first time ever.

1) You get a sticker.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The time has come


Time to vote.

Top Five Fridays

Favorite of Fall:

5) Wearing jeans again (even though they don't really fit me)

4) Playoffs (except this year)

3) Not sweating as much when towing the trailer around town

2) It's almost time for eggnog!

1) Pumpkins

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Jeans

I have one pair of pants that truly fit me. They are made out of hemp by Patagonia, the greatest retail company in the history of the world. (They gave $10,000, iirc, to RHH a few years ago.) In every other style of jeans, it seems, I have a size 8-10 waist and size 12-14 thighs; European-sized brands like Lucky seem to be especially bad, but Gap jeans are lousy, too. Linda says it's because my quads are huge from cycling, God love 'er (in the parlance of our times), but I suspect it's a combination of weird things happening to my body after having two kids, and clothing designers hating women.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Top Five Friday; late because I'm bitter and angry

Random tidbits from the debate:

5) Joe Biden spends a lot of time at Home Depot.

4) Apparently one doesn't need to know the causes of a problem in order to solve it.

3) Bosniaks.

2) O'Biden

1) "Yooo betcha!"

For some actual analysis of debate, see this post and this one by Josh Richman.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Curses

If any of you out there don't believe in curses, would you care to give me some other explanation as to what the f*&% just happened???

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Truthiness stages a comeback

Published: September 20, 2008

NOT until 2004 could the 9/11 commission at last reveal the title of the intelligence briefing President Bush ignored on Aug. 6, 2001, in Crawford: “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.” No wonder John McCain called for a new “9/11 commission” to “get to the bottom” of 9/14, when the collapse of Lehman Brothers set off another kind of blood bath in Lower Manhattan. Put a slo-mo Beltway panel in charge, and Election Day will be ancient history before we get to the bottom of just how little he and the president did to defend America against a devastating new threat on their watch.


For better or worse, the candidacy of Barack Obama, a senator-come-lately, must be evaluated on his judgment, ideas and potential to lead. McCain, by contrast, has been chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, where he claims to have overseen “every part of our economy.” He didn’t, thank heavens, but he does have a long and relevant economic record that begins with the Keating Five scandal of 1989 and extends to this campaign, where his fiscal policies bear the fingerprints of Phil Gramm and Carly Fiorina. It’s not the résumé that a presidential candidate wants to advertise as America faces its worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. That’s why the main thrust of the McCain campaign has been to cover up his history of economic malpractice.

McCain has largely pulled it off so far, under the guidance of Steve Schmidt, a Karl Rove protégé. A Rovian political strategy by definition means all slime, all the time. But the more crucial Rove game plan is to envelop the entire presidential race in a thick fog of truthiness. All campaigns, Obama’s included, engage in false attacks. But McCain, Sarah Palin and their surrogates keep repeating the same lies over and over not just to smear their opponents and not just to mask their own record. Their larger aim is to construct a bogus alternative reality so relentless it can overwhelm any haphazard journalistic stabs at puncturing it.

When a McCain spokesman told Politico a week ago that “we’re not too concerned about what the media filter tries to say” about the campaign’s incessant fictions, he was channeling a famous Bush dictum of 2003: “Somehow you just got to go over the heads of the filter.” In Bush’s case, the lies lobbed over the heads of the press were to sell the war in Iraq. That propaganda blitz, devised by a secret White House Iraq Group that included Rove, was a triumph. In mere months, Americans came to believe that Saddam Hussein had aided the 9/11 attacks and even that Iraqis were among the hijackers. A largely cowed press failed to set the record straight.

Just as the Bushies once flogged uranium from Africa, so Palin ceaselessly repeats her discredited claim that she said “no thanks” to the Bridge to Nowhere. Nothing is too small or sacred for the McCain campaign to lie about. It was even caught (by The Christian Science Monitor) peddling an imaginary encounter between Cindy McCain and Mother Teresa when McCain was adopting her daughter in Bangladesh.

If you doubt that the big lies are sticking, look at the latest Washington Post/ABC News poll. Half of voters now believe in the daily McCain refrain that Obama will raise their taxes. In fact, Obama proposes raising taxes only on the 1.9 percent of households that make more than $250,000 a year and cutting them for nearly everyone else.

You know the press is impotent at unmasking this truthiness when the hardest-hitting interrogation McCain has yet faced on television came on “The View.” Barbara Walters and Joy Behar called him on several falsehoods, including his endlessly repeated fantasy that Palin opposed earmarks for Alaska. Behar used the word “lies” to his face. The McCains are so used to deference from “the filter” that Cindy McCain later complained that “The View” picked “our bones clean.” In our news culture, Behar, a stand-up comic by profession, looms as the new Edward R. Murrow.

Network news, with its dwindling handful of investigative reporters, has barely mentioned, let alone advanced, major new print revelations about Cindy McCain’s drug-addiction history (in The Washington Post) and the rampant cronyism and secrecy in Palin’s governance of Alaska (in last Sunday’s New York Times). At least the networks repeatedly fact-check the low-hanging fruit among the countless Palin lies, but John McCain’s past usually remains off limits.

That’s strange since the indisputable historical antecedent for our current crisis is the Lincoln Savings and Loan scandal of the go-go 1980s. When Charles Keating’s bank went belly up because of risky, unregulated investments, it wiped out its depositors’ savings and cost taxpayers more than $3 billion. More than 1,000 other S.&L. institutions capsized nationwide.

It was ugly for the McCains. He had received more than $100,000 in Keating campaign contributions, and both McCains had repeatedly hopped on Keating’s corporate jet. Cindy McCain and her beer-magnate father had invested nearly $360,000 in a Keating shopping center a year before her husband joined four senators in inappropriate meetings with regulators charged with S.&L. oversight.

After Congressional hearings, McCain was reprimanded for “poor judgment.” He had committed no crime and had not intervened to protect Keating from ruin. Yet he, like many deregulators in his party, was guilty of bankrupt policy-making before disaster struck. He was among the sponsors of a House resolution calling for the delay of regulations intended to deter risky investments just like those that brought down Lincoln and its ilk.

Ever since, McCain has publicly thrashed himself for his mistakes back then — and boasted of the lessons he learned. He embraced campaign finance reform to rebrand himself as a “maverick.” But whatever lessons he learned are now forgotten.

For all his fiery calls last week for a Wall Street crackdown, McCain opposed the very regulations that might have helped avert the current catastrophe. In 1999, he supported a law co-authored by Gramm (and ultimately signed by Bill Clinton) that revoked the New Deal reforms intended to prevent commercial banks, insurance companies and investment banks from mingling their businesses. Equally laughable is the McCain-Palin ticket’s born-again outrage over the greed of Wall Street C.E.O.’s. When McCain’s chief financial surrogate, Fiorina, was fired as Hewlett-Packard’s chief executive after a 50 percent drop in shareholders’ value and 20,000 pink slips, she took home a package worth $42 million.

The McCain campaign canceled Fiorina’s television appearances last week after she inadvertently admitted that Palin was unqualified to run a corporation. But that doesn’t mean Fiorina is gone. Gramm, too, was ostentatiously exiled after he blamed the economic meltdown on our “nation of whiners” and “mental recession,” but he remains in the McCain loop.

The corporate jets, lobbyists and sleazes that gravitated around McCain in the Keating era have also reappeared in new incarnations. The Nation’s Web site recently unearthed a photo of the resolutely anticelebrity McCain being greeted by the con man Raffaello Follieri and his then girlfriend, the Hollywood actress Anne Hathaway, as McCain celebrated his 70th birthday on Follieri’s rented yacht in Montenegro in August 2006. It’s the perfect bookend to the old pictures of McCain in a funny hat partying with Keating in the Bahamas.

Whatever blanks are yet to be filled in on Obama, we at least know his economic plans and the known quantities who are shaping them (Lawrence Summers, Robert Rubin, Paul Volcker). McCain has reversed himself on every single economic issue this year, often within a 24-hour period, whether he’s judging the strength of the economy’s fundamentals or the wisdom of the government bailout of A.I.G. He once promised that he’d run every decision past Alan Greenspan — and even have him write a new tax code — but Greenspan has jumped ship rather than support McCain’s biggest flip-flop, his expansion of the Bush tax cuts. McCain’s official chief economic adviser is now Douglas Holtz-Eakin, who last week declared that McCain had “helped create” the BlackBerry.

But Holtz-Eakin’s most telling statement was about McCain’s economic plans — namely, that the details are irrelevant. “I don’t think it’s imperative at this moment to write down what the plan should be,” he said. “The real issue here is a leadership issue.” This, too, is a Rove-Bush replay. We want a tough guy who will “fix” things with his own two hands — let’s take out the S.E.C. chairman! — instead of wimpy Frenchified Democrats who just “talk.” The fine print of policy is superfluous if there’s a quick-draw decider in the White House.

The twin-pronged strategy of truculence and propaganda that sold Bush and his war could yet work for McCain. Even now his campaign has kept the “filter” from learning the very basics about his fitness to serve as president — his finances and his health. The McCain multihousehold’s multimillion-dollar mother lode is buried in Cindy McCain’s still-unreleased complete tax returns. John McCain’s full medical records, our sole index to the odds of an imminent Palin presidency, also remain locked away. The McCain campaign instead invited 20 chosen reporters to speed-read through 1,173 pages of medical history for a mere three hours on the Friday before Memorial Day weekend. No photocopying was permitted.

This is the same tactic of selective document release that the Bush White House used to bamboozle Congress and the press about Saddam’s nonexistent W.M.D. As truthiness repeats itself, so may history, and not as farce.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Home Field Advantage

I don't know if those of you who read this blog (Hi Matthew! Adam?) understand the gravity of this situation, but it is heavy (thanks Marty). The Cubs have clinched the best record in the National League. That means they will have home field advantage in the first round of the playoffs and, if they get there (which they better) the second round. The Cubs have a really good record, but they are only 5 games over .500 on the road. At home, they are TWENTY NINE games over .500. So, basically, if they don't get to the World Series this year, they will be considered a huge failure. Of course, they were huge failures in '84 and '03. So that is what I'm used to. If they actually get to the WS, I will be in shock and therefore not intensely concerned about what they do in those 4-7 games.

That said, my hat is on its way, and I have written GO CUBBIES in blue paint on the rear windshield of my car.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Single greatest piece ever in the NYT

Bartlett meets Obama. That's right, liberal fantastical reality meet liberal fantastical fantasy.

Oh, and by the way, it's true:

You were raised by a single mother on food stamps — where does a guy with eight houses who was legacied into Annapolis get off calling you an elitist?... They have to lie — the truth isn’t their friend right now. Get angry. Mock them mercilessly; they’ve earned it. McCain decried agents of intolerance, then chose a running mate who had to ask if she was allowed to ban books from a public library.



Here's the full text of the op-ed, in case you're not signed up, though I highly recommend signing up since it's the best online news source there is:

Now that he’s finally fired up on the soup-line economy, Barack Obama knows he can’t fade out again. He was eager to talk privately to a Democratic ex-president who could offer more fatherly wisdom — not to mention a surreptitious smoke — and less fraternal rivalry. I called the “West Wing” creator Aaron Sorkin (yes, truly) to get a read-out of the meeting. This is what he wrote:

BARACK OBAMA knocks on the front door of a 300-year-old New Hampshire farmhouse while his Secret Service detail waits in the driveway. The door opens and OBAMA is standing face to face with former President JED BARTLET.

BARTLET Senator.

OBAMA Mr. President.

BARTLET You seem startled.

OBAMA I didn’t expect you to answer the door yourself.

BARTLET I didn’t expect you to be getting beat by John McCain and a Lancôme rep who thinks “The Flintstones” was based on a true story, so let’s call it even.

OBAMA Yes, sir.

BARTLET Come on in.

BARTLET leads OBAMA into his study.

BARTLET That was a hell of a convention.

OBAMA Thank you, I was proud of it.

BARTLET I meant the Republicans. The Us versus Them-a-thon. As a Democrat I was surprised to learn that I don’t like small towns, God, people with jobs or America. I’ve been a little out of touch but is there a mandate that the vice president be skilled at field dressing a moose —

OBAMA Look —

BARTLET — and selling Air Force Two on eBay?

OBAMA Joke all you want, Mr. President, but it worked.

BARTLET Imagine my surprise. What can I do for you, kid?

OBAMA I’m interested in your advice.

BARTLET I can’t give it to you.

OBAMA Why not?

BARTLET I’m supporting McCain.

OBAMA Why?

BARTLET He’s promised to eradicate evil and that was always on my “to do” list.

OBAMA O.K. —

BARTLET And he’s surrounded himself, I think, with the best possible team to get us out of an economic crisis. Why, Sarah Palin just said Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac had “gotten too big and too expensive to the taxpayers.” Can you spot the error in that statement?

OBAMA Yes, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac aren’t funded by taxpayers.

BARTLET Well, at least they are now. Kind of reminds you of the time Bush said that Social Security wasn’t a government program. He was only off by a little — Social Security is the largest government program.

OBAMA I appreciate your sense of humor, sir, but I really could use your advice.

BARTLET Well, it seems to me your problem is a lot like the problem I had twice.

OBAMA Which was?

BARTLET A huge number of Americans thought I thought I was superior to them.

OBAMA And?

BARTLET I was.

OBAMA I mean, how did you overcome that?

BARTLET I won’t lie to you, being fictional was a big advantage.

OBAMA What do you mean?

BARTLET I’m a fictional president. You’re dreaming right now, Senator.

OBAMA I’m asleep?

BARTLET Yes, and you’re losing a ton of white women.

OBAMA Yes, sir.

BARTLET I mean tons.

OBAMA I understand.

BARTLET I didn’t even think there were that many white women.

OBAMA I see the numbers, sir. What do they want from me?

BARTLET I’ve been married to a white woman for 40 years and I still don’t know what she wants from me.

OBAMA How did you do it?

BARTLET Well, I say I’m sorry a lot.

OBAMA I don’t mean your marriage, sir. I mean how did you get America on your side?

BARTLET There again, I didn’t have to be president of America, I just had to be president of the people who watched “The West Wing.”

OBAMA That would make it easier.

BARTLET You’d do very well on NBC. Thursday nights in the old “ER” time slot with “30 Rock” as your lead-in, you’d get seven, seven-five in the demo with a 20, 22 share — you’d be selling $450,000 minutes.

OBAMA What the hell does that mean?

BARTLET TV talk. I thought you’d be interested.

OBAMA I’m not. They pivoted off the argument that I was inexperienced to the criticism that I’m — wait for it — the Messiah, who, by the way, was a community organizer. When I speak I try to lead with inspiration and aptitude. How is that a liability?

BARTLET Because the idea of American exceptionalism doesn’t extend to Americans being exceptional. If you excelled academically and are able to casually use 690 SAT words then you might as well have the press shoot video of you giving the finger to the Statue of Liberty while the Dixie Chicks sing the University of the Taliban fight song. The people who want English to be the official language of the United States are uncomfortable with their leaders being fluent in it.

OBAMA You’re saying race doesn’t have anything to do with it?

BARTLET I wouldn’t go that far. Brains made me look arrogant but they make you look uppity. Plus, if you had a black daughter —

OBAMA I have two.

BARTLET — who was 17 and pregnant and unmarried and the father was a teenager hoping to launch a rap career with “Thug Life” inked across his chest, you’d come in fifth behind Bob Barr, Ralph Nader and a ficus.

OBAMA You’re not cheering me up.

BARTLET Is that what you came here for?

OBAMA No, but it wouldn’t kill you.

BARTLET Have you tried doing a two-hour special or a really good Christmas show?

OBAMA Sir —

BARTLET Hang on. Home run. Right here. Is there any chance you could get Michelle pregnant before the fall sweeps?

OBAMA The problem is we can’t appear angry. Bush called us the angry left. Did you see anyone in Denver who was angry?

BARTLET Well ... let me think. ...We went to war against the wrong country, Osama bin Laden just celebrated his seventh anniversary of not being caught either dead or alive, my family’s less safe than it was eight years ago, we’ve lost trillions of dollars, millions of jobs, thousands of lives and we lost an entire city due to bad weather. So, you know ... I’m a little angry.

OBAMA What would you do?

BARTLET GET ANGRIER! Call them liars, because that’s what they are. Sarah Palin didn’t say “thanks but no thanks” to the Bridge to Nowhere. She just said “Thanks.” You were raised by a single mother on food stamps — where does a guy with eight houses who was legacied into Annapolis get off calling you an elitist? And by the way, if you do nothing else, take that word back. Elite is a good word, it means well above average. I’d ask them what their problem is with excellence. While you’re at it, I want the word “patriot” back. McCain can say that the transcendent issue of our time is the spread of Islamic fanaticism or he can choose a running mate who doesn’t know the Bush doctrine from the Monroe Doctrine, but he can’t do both at the same time and call it patriotic. They have to lie — the truth isn’t their friend right now. Get angry. Mock them mercilessly; they’ve earned it. McCain decried agents of intolerance, then chose a running mate who had to ask if she was allowed to ban books from a public library. It’s not bad enough she thinks the planet Earth was created in six days 6,000 years ago complete with a man, a woman and a talking snake, she wants schools to teach the rest of our kids to deny geology, anthropology, archaeology and common sense too? It’s not bad enough she’s forcing her own daughter into a loveless marriage to a teenage hood, she wants the rest of us to guide our daughters in that direction too? It’s not enough that a woman shouldn’t have the right to choose, it should be the law of the land that she has to carry and deliver her rapist’s baby too? I don’t know whether or not Governor Palin has the tenacity of a pit bull, but I know for sure she’s got the qualifications of one. And you’re worried about seeming angry? You could eat their lunch, make them cry and tell their mamas about it and God himself would call it restrained. There are times when you are simply required to be impolite. There are times when condescension is called for!

OBAMA Good to get that off your chest?

BARTLET Am I keeping you from something?

OBAMA Well, it’s not as if I didn’t know all of that and it took you like 20 minutes to say.

BARTLET I know, I have a problem, but admitting it is the first step.

OBAMA What’s the second step?

BARTLET I don’t care.

OBAMA So what about hope? Chuck it for outrage and put-downs?

BARTLET No. You’re elite, you can do both. Four weeks ago you had the best week of your campaign, followed — granted, inexplicably — by the worst week of your campaign. And you’re still in a statistical dead heat. You’re a 47-year-old black man with a foreign-sounding name who went to Harvard and thinks devotion to your country and lapel pins aren’t the same thing and you’re in a statistical tie with a war hero and a Cinemax heroine. To these aged eyes, Senator, that’s what progress looks like. You guys got four debates. Get out of my house and go back to work.

OBAMA Wait, what is it you always used to say? When you hit a bump on the show and your people were down and frustrated? You’d give them a pep talk and then you’d always end it with something. What was it ...?

BARTLET “Break’s over.”

Sunday, September 21, 2008

plastic bags

They continue to be very, very bad. Check out this short slide show.

"Just" making the WS won't be failure for Cubs

I totally agree with Morrissey. It the Cubs actually get to the WS, I will probably be in such a state of shock I won't even realize whether they win or not.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Top 5 Fridays, late because I was under the laser

stuff Redwood City really, really needs but doesn't have:

5) A Boston Market

4) An independent fabric store

3) A reporter from a local paper devoted to covering nothing but Redwood City

2) A school board member minimum-IQ law

1) In-N-Out

WOOOOO!!!!!

WOOOOO!!!!!!!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Lasers are cool

12 hours from now I will be hopped up on Valium. That's right, I'm getting my eyes lasered. No more glasses (except awesome sunglasses), no more contacts, no more hauling a chemistry set everywhere I go to preserve said contacts (take that TSA!).

This guy is doing my surgery. They are also making a video recording of the surgery (for which they are giving me a nice discount!) so you'll eventually be able to watch me getting my eyes lasered.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Top Five Fridays: trivia edition

Maybe there will be a prize if I trust you enough to believe you didn't cheat.

5) Where did Elwood get the car he used to pick up Jake at Joliet?

4) What was the score of the game when Rooney visited the sports bar?

3) Where did Ray Kinsella go to college?

2) What was the date on the check the Dude wrote for 89 cents?

1) Complete this line: "Stewardess, I ____ ____."

This about sums it up.

Paul Krugman hits it on the head.

Did you hear about how Barack Obama wants to have sex education in kindergarten, and called Sarah Palin a pig? Did you hear about how Ms. Palin told Congress, “Thanks, but no thanks” when it wanted to buy Alaska a Bridge to Nowhere?

These stories have two things in common: they’re all claims recently made by the McCain campaign — and they’re all out-and-out lies.

Dishonesty is nothing new in politics. I spent much of 2000 — my first year at The Times — trying to alert readers to the blatant dishonesty of the Bush campaign’s claims about taxes, spending and Social Security.

But I can’t think of any precedent, at least in America, for the blizzard of lies since the Republican convention. The Bush campaign’s lies in 2000 were artful — you needed some grasp of arithmetic to realize that you were being conned. This year, however, the McCain campaign keeps making assertions that anyone with an Internet connection can disprove in a minute, and repeating these assertions over and over again.

Take the case of the Bridge to Nowhere, which supposedly gives Ms. Palin credentials as a reformer. Well, when campaigning for governor, Ms. Palin didn’t say “no thanks” — she was all for the bridge, even though it had already become a national scandal, insisting that she would “not allow the spinmeisters to turn this project or any other into something that’s so negative.”

Oh, and when she finally did decide to cancel the project, she didn’t righteously reject a handout from Washington: she accepted the handout, but spent it on something else. You see, long before she decided to cancel the bridge, Congress had told Alaska that it could keep the federal money originally earmarked for that project and use it elsewhere.

So the whole story of Ms. Palin’s alleged heroic stand against wasteful spending is fiction.

Or take the story of Mr. Obama’s alleged advocacy of kindergarten sex-ed. In reality, he supported legislation calling for “age and developmentally appropriate education”; in the case of young children, that would have meant guidance to help them avoid sexual predators.

And then there’s the claim that Mr. Obama’s use of the ordinary metaphor “putting lipstick on a pig” was a sexist smear, and on and on.

Why do the McCain people think they can get away with this stuff? Well, they’re probably counting on the common practice in the news media of being “balanced” at all costs. You know how it goes: If a politician says that black is white, the news report doesn’t say that he’s wrong, it reports that “some Democrats say” that he’s wrong. Or a grotesque lie from one side is paired with a trivial misstatement from the other, conveying the impression that both sides are equally dirty.

They’re probably also counting on the prevalence of horse-race reporting, so that instead of the story being “McCain campaign lies,” it becomes “Obama on defensive in face of attacks.”

Still, how upset should we be about the McCain campaign’s lies? I mean, politics ain’t beanbag, and all that.

One answer is that the muck being hurled by the McCain campaign is preventing a debate on real issues — on whether the country really wants, for example, to continue the economic policies of the last eight years.

But there’s another answer, which may be even more important: how a politician campaigns tells you a lot about how he or she would govern.

I’m not talking about the theory, often advanced as a defense of horse-race political reporting, that the skills needed to run a winning campaign are the same as those needed to run the country. The contrast between the Bush political team’s ruthless effectiveness and the heckuva job done by the Bush administration is living, breathing, bumbling, and, in the case of the emerging Interior Department scandal, coke-snorting and bed-hopping proof to the contrary.

I’m talking, instead, about the relationship between the character of a campaign and that of the administration that follows. Thus, the deceptive and dishonest 2000 Bush-Cheney campaign provided an all-too-revealing preview of things to come. In fact, my early suspicion that we were being misled about the threat from Iraq came from the way the political tactics being used to sell the war resembled the tactics that had earlier been used to sell the Bush tax cuts.

And now the team that hopes to form the next administration is running a campaign that makes Bush-Cheney 2000 look like something out of a civics class. What does that say about how that team would run the country?

What it says, I’d argue, is that the Obama campaign is wrong to suggest that a McCain-Palin administration would just be a continuation of Bush-Cheney. If the way John McCain and Sarah Palin are campaigning is any indication, it would be much, much worse.

blech

I have been generally feeling blah and annoyed today, and I'm convinced that it's because I so miss diet pepsi. Donald Rumsfeld really needs to die a slow, painful death.

In my search for a replacement, however, I may have found a winner: Owater Infused with Caffeine and Electrolyites; basically Gatorade with caffeine (which they don't make why???). It tastes pretty decent, is pretty low in calories and has a reasonable amount of caffeine.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Obama gives condoms to five-year-olds

Comprehensive sex ed for all!

Monday, September 08, 2008

Oh, you mean we don't have to use this much water?

This study is one of those that anyone with an IQ over 100 could have figured out without the benefit of researchers and data: California farmers could save lots of water and lots of money if they would just buy a freaking clue.

About 75 percent of the water used in California is used for agriculture, and the large farms, which grow most of our food by a wide percentage, are very wasteful when it comes to water. Most of this state is in desert-like conditions for most of the year, yet God forbid you should suggest someone shouldn't water their crops or they lawn any idiotic time or way they feel like (yeah, landlord across the street, having your sprinklers go off at 11 a.m. every day, I'm talking to you!).

Why don't people get that we don't have infinite supplies of water? We can't just dump it out everywhere willy-nilly!

Then there's this:

Just one of the proposals—watering crops only when they need it—would save enough water to fill Hetch Hetchy reservoir in Yosemite National Park 10 times over...

WATERING CROPS ONLY WHEN THEY NEED IT?!?!?!?!? What the bloody hell are they doing out there? Do they not have to pay for water at all?? It's just mind-boggling.

Oh, and how dare someone suggest that the farmers grow crops that actually thrive in our environment, instead of RICE.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Top 5 Friday

Top 5 Moments at Lebowskifest opening party:

5) A couple coming up to us to tell we had the "best costumes," because we were wearing bathrobes.

4) Guy stopping me as I walked through the crowd to tell me his ringer was kind of empty and asking if I had any spare whites.

3) Extra Action Marching Band wardrobe malfunction.

2) As we walked from the venue back to our car, we heard a crash and then came upon a smashed TV on the sidewalk, and a crazy guy on the fire escape of the hotel a few stories up. As we decide to cross the street, another object crashed down behind us. Many cops congregated as the crazy screamed.

1) Our friend making out with Jeff Dowd.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Liar, liar, maternity pants on fire

If this is true, then it is quite something.

Top 5 Friday: Predictions

5) Obama wins election

4) Measure W passes

3) Final 3 at Bryant Park: Korto, Leanne and Joe

2) NL Rookie of the Year: Geovany Sotto (yeah, going out on a limb, I know)

1) WS: Angels over Cubs in 7 games

Friday, August 29, 2008

The pop

In case you're wondering how I've been doing on my quitting pop experiment, I'm doing OK. Yesterday was my first day without any pop OR caffeine! I took some aspirin for a headache in the morning and crashed hard while the boys napped. Today I had some Diet Pepsi with lunch and had considerably more energy in the afternoon.

Eventually I want to get to the point where I don't drink pop at all any more, mostly to keep my kids away from it. I don't really have a problem with using caffeine occasionally, but addiction is never good.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Ha ha!

More prizes ready to go out to whoever catches the gag! (It's even more obvious this time.)

Friday, August 22, 2008

Top 5 Friday

5 questions I have

5) Why aren’t there “exact change” lanes at the toll booths?????

4) How did he get to be president again?

3) Why do so many baby gear items require two hands to operate?

2) Why do so many people (mostly men) feel the need to say “got your hands full!” when they see a mom with more than one kid?

1) When does the choke start?

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Top 5 Friday (late because I'm sick)

Top 5 Questions I have about this season of Project Runway:

5) Does Jerrell need to cry every week about the person who gets Auf'd?

4) Will Stella ever actually design something that's not biker-bar wear?

3) Are any of these people actually likable, or are some merely not annoying?

2) How crowded is Mood during regular business hours with ProRun groupies? (If I ever go to NY again, I would totally go on a shopping spree there; though SF seems to have something nearly as good in Britex)

1) Who wants to put bets down now on the final three? (My guesses: Suede, Jerrell and Keith)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

"Mr. President, want to?"





I'm quite sure this is the first time I've actually felt sorry for George W. Bush. Not because of the Costas interview (he deserves whatever Bob throws at him), but look at him in that pic, with his arms frozen at his sides. But wait, it gets worse:




As Jon Stewart put it, this is probably the best decision of his presidency.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

So bitter

This was not a good day. I woke up this morning and got on the scale and I was 3.5 heavier than I was a week ago. Gaining three pounds a week is not acceptable. Nathan thinks it's water weight because I'm not consuming so much of a diuretic. But this says caffeine really isn't a diuretic. So who knows. Then I got some kind of coffee drink at Starbucks. This was the first time I had ever ordered a drink at Starbucks (they do have good pastries). I told the chick at the register my story (need something with caffeine, but no calories, and that doesn't really taste that much like coffee). It took a while but she recommended the skinny-something-or-other. Of course, since it was a coffee drink, it taste like ass. But less like ass than plain coffee. Coffee simply is not tasty. You people can keep telling yourself that it is. But you don't drink it because it tastes good, you drink it because it has caffeine and no calories. Eventually you get so used to it that it seems to taste good. But maybe that's true of NutraSweet, too.

Anyway, I continued to have headaches this afternoon despite Excedrin in the morning and my ass drink with lunch. Nathan thinks it's because of NutraSweet withdrawal, since there's some evidence that's an addictive drug, too. I did have a can and a half of Fresca, though. Anyway, I'm starting to wonder if all this annoying crap is worth it.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Top 5 Friday

Nicknames I Have Had

5) Kiddo

4) Blondie (even when I *didn't* dye it)

3) Chicago

2) Little Buddy

1) Mayor of McGarvey

A special prize will go to anyone who can name the assingor of more than one of these (hint: four are at least somewhat newspaper-related)

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Oh yes, there are headaches

They tend to be at the base of my skull, and into my neck. Seems kind of random. The only caffeine I had today was Excedrin first thing in the morning. I had aspirin a little after lunch and some more around 7.

It'll be a week tomorrow, with just one slip off the wagon: some Diet Coke with my soup-in-a-bread-bowl at Boulanger yesterday. It actually didn't taste that good...

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Roasting

Maybe I should try to develop a taste for coffee. There are a small number of teas that I like to drink in the winter...

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

day 4

This morning I had a does of Excedrin (two pills = a cup of coffee = two cans of Diet Pepsi) and then a caffeinated Gu while I was riding my bike around 2. And three cans of Fresca. I'm hoping that aspartame will start tasting bad to me.

Monday, August 04, 2008

3 days

It has been more than 72 hours since I had any cola. No Diet Pepsi, no Diet Coke. Just a few cans of diet rootbeer and some Excedrin to ease the transition. I've only needed 2 or 2.5 doses of the Excedrin each day. I hope to back off that starting tomorrow. It's not so much the caffeine that I'll miss, I think, it's just the sweet taste. I simply love love love the taste of Diet Pepsi. Flavorful and no calories. Oh yeah.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

I have gotten so bad at this

The Brew Crew the Cubbies did sweep

But against Pitt on Friday, no peep

But then they prevailed

Lilly and Johnson, fans hailed

And up in the standings they leap

Friday, August 01, 2008

Top Five Fridays

Top Five Things That Are Not OK:

5) Shutting down a lane of 17 between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m.

4) Crying on national TV because your ProRun teammate of three days got Aufed.

3) Scoring less than two runs when you have the bases loaded with no outs.

2) The Cubs getting shut out by the Pirates at Wrigley.

1) Calling yourself Suede and referring to yourself in the third person.

Pop

I've finally decided it's time to stop drinking diet soda. There's the drug addiction, the probable cancer-causing agent (though what doesn't cause cancer?) and now the osteoporosis. One of these taken on its own wouldn't be enough, but all taken together, plus the fact that I don't want my kids wanting to drink pop, and I'm actually ready to quit. And I'm excited about the reduction in my carbon footprint, fewer cans and bottles circulating, etc. But I'll miss you, diet pop!

I finished the Diet Pepsi that was in the fridge this morning, and now I'm done. My last one was consumed in the car on the way to Santa Cruz around 10 a.m. I'm using Excedrin to ease the caffeine withdrawl.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Llama drama

Believe it or not, I was at the Peoria Zoo a week ago today. Peoria, Illinois, as in, "will it play in Peoria?" A llama is about my height, apparently. Just as I was reading on the sign near the llama pen about how "when llama's are angry, they spit a foul-smelling liquid," the llama ambled up to me and practically stuck its face in mine across its fence. As I nervously backed away, the llama suddenly sneezed and I felt a bit of llama snot fly onto my hand. I shrieked like a girl and ran away. It was quiet a moment at the Peoria Zoo.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Late note on the All Star Game

Just in case you were wondering, the Cubs are officially not going to win the World Series this year. I know that's a shock to you all.

And my reasoning on this is even better than the usual goat or black cat: Since the NL lost the ASG, the Cubs would not have home field advantage in the unlikely event that they actually got to the WS. Since they have a losing record on the road, I think it's safe to say they won't be winning a whole lot of post season games not played at Clark and Addison.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Slow cell phone death

You know you're going to die of cancer, right? We are all going to die of cancer at some point, unless some a-hole in an SUV runs us down first, because of all the crap in the air and our food and our walls and household appliances. I, personally, am going to die of either skin cancer or breast cancer. Genetics, you know. So here's just another item to add to your list of toxins that are feeding your future tumors.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Top 5 Friday

Top 5 things I did for the first time on our trip to St. Louis:

5) Hung out in Peoria

4) Saw Suzy's zoo

3) Caught Matthew dozing in church

2) Got sneezed on by a llama (more on that later)

1) Went fishing (and actually caught one! -- more on that later, too)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Top 5 Friday (EARLY because we're going away)

My 5 favorite things about St. Louis (see how I'm trying to be all positive?) :D

5) They have this really cool scrapbooking store

4) The Bowling Hall of Fame (I've never actually been there, but I bet it's cool)

3) The City Museum

2) My dear inlaws and bro-in-law live there in their fabulous home, which they generously open to us any time we want

1) When the Cardinals lose

Musica

My friends have informed me that I am incredibly out of touch because I recognized maybe three of the songs on Rock Band. I told them that I knew this already and didn't see it as much of a problem, but they insist I would be a better person if I would get a clue when it comes to modern music. The problem is that I can't listen to the radio, except NPR. The commercials, the DJs and the wading through the crap to get to the good stuff on commercial radio stations is too annoying and too much work. So, I ask you, reader, what should I listen to? Here's what's on my Walkman (which I like, btw):

Lots of classic rock (Aerosmith, CCR, Queen)

Lots of 80s (Bananarama, Bangles, Madonna, Huey Lewis)

Some alt-country (Wilco, BR549)

Every album ever by Mellencamp, Sheryl Crow, and Led Zeppelin)

The only tracks I would consider "current" are about four by Bowling for Soup and one each by the Killers and the Foo Fighters.

Also, Regan already pretty much did this, but with books, so I'm ripping her off again.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Did anyone get it?

If you spotted the gag that was on this blog yesterday, you get a prize.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Best haircut ever

I am the anti-Regan.






Poor Regan. I have the best hairstylist ever. She works miracles. I todl her I wanted to start growing out my hair, and this is the magic she worked. No other hair stylist has been able to actually make my hair look good. I love her. For you locals, her name is Dana Wisdom and she works at Headlines in San Carlos. Did I mention I love her?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Top 5 Movies of all Time

Top 5? Fridays, right? Oh yeah. Kinda forgot about that for a while. Here's an easy one:

5) The Blues Brothers

4) American Beauty

3) Raiders of the Lost Ark

2) Field of Dreams

1) The Big Lebowski

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Mountain lion attack

I might be concerned about this, if I were allowed to enter Foothills Park.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

I'm Number One!

...at least when it comes to hating Terry Gross. If you search for "Terry Gross sucks"on Google, you will find this post of mine at the top of the list.

I love it when like-minded people comment on this post after finding it when performing this search.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Flip flop flip-flop

This article about flip-flops causing foot problems caught my eye because wearing flip-flops caused foot problems. For me. Last summer that was all I wore. Hey, I was pregnant! And it was summer! Sure, I also wear flip-flops during the winter, but still. So the ball of my foot and my Achilles tendonitis (flare-up from my running days) started hurting. Podiatrist said "wear real shoes!" (And use Superfeet.)

So Tuesday I was at Happy Hollow and noticed that pretty much everyone (at least all the moms) was wearing flip flops. Of course, it was about 98 degrees. And there were these:





I was being a good girl and wearing my walking shoes, Superfeet inserted.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Cleanse?

One of my Baby Boot Camp clients recently told me about this blog and how the blogger was doing this insane "cleanse" diet where you can't have sugar, gluten, caffeine, alcohol, or animal products. Seriously. What the hell do you actually eat? Well, it made her horribly sick, which made me crack up. I'm pretty sure I could do each of them separately for a day or a week, depending on which one it is.

Yesterday we went to this wedding where all the food was vegan. I could do vegetarian (I did for a while, with the exception of the occasional In-N-Out burger) but not vegan. I need some cheese and milk and eggs.

But the cleanse story got me thinking about trying to give up one of the things for maybe a week at a time. Meat one week, alcohol the next, sugar would be good. Caffeine would be the tough one. I don't think I'd even want to try the gluten, though I know some people who swear by their gluten-free diet.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

ouch

Zambrano has aches in his shoulder.
We Cubs fans must stop getting bolder.
Some thought we might win,
but I think it’s a sin
to assume that the Cubs won’t get colder.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Limericks

Once again I'm stealing a blog idea from someone else, this time from a friend and not just some random person. However, I'm adapting it to a format I have some more experience with. Some former coworkers and I used to write limericks to amuse ourselves during slow newsweeks.

Oh, about what should I blog?
Sometimes when I write I get bogged
down thinking of idees
and I just churn out cheese
Then think of how I miss our dog

As you can see, I'm out of practice.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Top 5 Questions about the Lost season finale

5) How were they planning to explain Desmond's presence on their life raft if it hadn't been Penny on the boat?

4) What happens to the people Farraday was ferrying from the island to the boat? No boat, no island...

3) Did the polar bear escape from the weird alien bunker?

2) Why did they have to lie to "protect" those "left behind" when the point of moving the island was to protect it?

1) Who killed Locke, and why (if he is, in fact, actually dead)?

Random comment: The commercial during the last half of the show was my favorite moment. 2nd favorite: Ben "Dick Cheney" Linus: "So?"

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Lost

WOW this show is stupid. I just finally watched the season finale (why would I waste my time watching this drivel when I could be watching the FIRST PLACE Cubs??). This is officially beyond ridiculous. There's some kind of crazy alien stuff going on? From now on, I'm only watching the first and last episodes of each season. Those are the only episodes where anything happens, anyway, except maybe one or two during Feb. sweeps.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Top 5 Fridays

Five situations that just should be:

5) You should be able to back out of your driveway and have faith that no one will be coming down the street at twice the speed limit.

4) You should NOT need a flashlight to retrieve something from your closet or cabinet.

3) A person running for president of the US should have the insight to understand when he or she is out of the race.

2) A person who is president should NOT have an IQ under 100.

1) A national park should be free of environmental degradations such as, oh, I don't know, DAMS.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Books, books, books

Regan wants to talk about books:

Total number of books I’ve owned:
Not that many. I don't really believe in buying books, except used. I'm big into libraries.


Last book I bought:

Lama Lama Red Pajama

Last book I read:
OK, the last book I finished reading? Let's see, I started reading this Bill Bryson book (I've started lots of his, but never finished one). So I guess it was Saving Fish from Drowning, which was good.

Five books that mean something to me:
I’m not going to pretend that all of these books are great works of literature. Heck, you might have even read one of them and hated it. But to me they are special for some reason or another.

Where the Red Fern Grows

Shoeless Joe

I'll think of some more later...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

New MP3 player

A couple weeks ago some punk relieved me of my iPod after noticing that my car was unlocked on my driveway. This sucked, especially because it happened during NPR's Pledge Week. But it did mean that it was finally time for me to get an MP3 player that doesn't suck. So my wonderful husband got me a new MP3 players for Mothers Day. Yay! I'd been doing some research and thought about a few different ones, but we went to Best Buy tonight and the Sony Walkman seemed to have the nicest UI. I'm sure it will take me some time to get it up and running, but I will surely be reporting on my experience. Stay tuned...

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Top 5 Fridays

On Sunday, as usual...

Top 5 Things I might do this weekend if I could (i.e., if I didn't have babies to take care of)

5) Get a good start on my next quilt

4) Plant something in the back yard

3) Go for a 40-plus-mile bike ride

2) Go on a big, long hike

1) Sleep

Monday, May 19, 2008

Top 5 Friday

late because of the Beer Bus.

Top 5 (well, only five) ingredients in Beer.

5) Barley

4) Hops

3) Yeast

2) Water

1) Love

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Top 5 Fridays, late because we were in Yosemite this weekend

Top 5 Arthur quotes from our weekend in Yosemite:

5) "Birds talking to each other." (at the butt crack of dawn on Sunday, laying in his sleeping bag)

4) "Wanna touch the big tree."

3) "Wanna touch the big rock."

2) "Big river noisy!"

1) "Big waterfalls!"

Monday, May 05, 2008

Top 5 Fridays, late because I'm a slacker

Top 5 Rules for the bike ride Adam and I did on Saturday:

5) It's OK if we don't finish. (we did)

4) No rushing -- especially on hills.

3) It's OK if we don't finish.

2) Lots of sunscreen.

1) Most importantly, no making fun of my crazy cataract sunglasses. These, along with other measures, will hopefully prevent me from getting my typical mile-40 raging headache,

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Why do people live there again?

Right now in my home town it is 33 degrees. Farenheit.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Top 5 Fridays, late because I had to host a baby shower Saturday

My two-and-a-half-year-old's five favorite things:

5) Lady bugs

4) Trains

3) Seeing his speech therapist, Didem (pronounced DEE-dum). Arthur says "Go see Dee!"

2) Big airplanes

1) "Big waffles" (he means waterfalls -- and he's going to go bonkers when we take him to Yosemite in a couple weeks!)

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Dumb and dumber

According to two of the popular stories on the New York Times web site, teenagers don't know much about his-tor-ee and our president -- yes the PRESIDENT of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA -- appeared on a game show hosted by Howie Mandel.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Top 5 Fridays 3, three days late

Top 5 surprises from the Cubs so far this season:

5) Reed Johnson coming from out of nowhere (Toronto actually, but same diff) to fill in at leadoff and become one of my new favorite players. All hustle, that guy.

4) Ryan Dempster's success moving from the bullpen to the starting rotation.

3) Kerry Wood's success moving from the rotation to the bullpen.

2) Zambrano hasn't hit a home run yet

1) Their actually, um, kind of, ahem, good.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Marty Brennaman calls Cubs fans idiots

The Reds announcer (whose son, Thom, is one of the best in baseball, imho) wasn't far off with his comments. But then, he had to go and say this:

"[Compared to Cubs fans] Cardinals fans are hands down the best in baseball. They respect the game. They don't go to the game to do stupid stuff. …" Um, how about picking fights with 12-year-olds? Threatening Cubs fans in San Francisco?

that said, here are some comments from the Trib story, which I pretty much agree with:

I have been a Cubs fan all my life, but you know what? Brennaman is right. I was at the game on Tues. night in the bleachers, where I have typically sat since I was in gradeschool (in the 80s), and the people there were the worst I've ever experienced. They were more interested in razzing Corey Patterson than they were in the game; they cared more about their beer and getting wasted and talking on their cells phones than the game. The latter behavior I've gotten used to. But the former? Why does everyone have to "suck"? Why do we have to shout profanities and rude names at opposite players? Is that maturity? Is that even sportsmanlike? Is that a fan? I think not. I'm a fan and I would never act like the idiots in the crowd on Tues. night. Yet another reason to stay home and listen to the game on the radio. Wrigley as an entity is becoming a joke. How sad. Sad for Chicago. Sad for the Cubs. Sad for baseball. Posted by: dib | Apr 18, 2008 12:46:48 PM

yeah, it is disrespectful. the fans even throw a "substitute ball" making it more obnoxious...I always thought that throwing ANYTHING on the field was grounds for ejections --it is in every other ball park. If you don't want the ball --give it to a kid... just wait until a player gets hurt by one of those balls.... not to mention when they litter their "shrine" with garbage when they do not like a call. For Piniella to say "They get into the ballgame" is a joke. half of them have no idea what is going on , they are just there for the Frat party


Posted by: Johnny B. | Apr 18, 2008 12:50:16 PM

I believe the majority of cubs fans are good fans. You just never see them at Wrigley because it's filled with idiots who go there only to drink and don't really care about baseball. The problem is, the highest concentration of idiots are in the most visible part of the park: the bleachers.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Two-wheeled Wonder

From the Sierra Club:

Bicycles are not for everyone, and they're not for every trip. Cars do many things that bicycles cannot easily do: carry heavy loads uphill, protect riders from the elements, and cover long distances quickly. But a surprising number of car trips could easily be made by bike. Nearly half of all trips in the United States are three miles or less; more than a quarter are less than a mile.

...

Short car trips are, naturally, the easiest to replace with a bike trip (or even walking). Mile for mile, they are also the most polluting. Engines running cold produce four times the carbon monoxide and twice the volatile organic compounds of engines running hot. And smog-forming (and carcinogenic) VOCs continue to evaporate from an engine until it cools off, whether the engine's been running for five minutes or five hours.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Top Five Fridays 2

OK, obviously I totally forgot about this, but I'll try to start it up again...

Five worst things about being sick:

5) No bike riding

4) After dragging your sick, exhausted self to the doctor, dragging your sick, exhausted self to the pharmacy to get your meds. (Why oh WHY can't they just give it to you at the doctor?!? Can ANYONE tell me????)

3) Constantly wondering where your next tissue will come from.

2) Having to get out of bed and walk 20 feet to the next room where your meds are.

1) Trying to figure out how to take care of a toddler and a baby while you feel like you are going to die.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Pro-Choic Evangelicals?

About a third of white evangelicals say that abortion should sometimes or always be legal, according to the Pew Research Center—a number that hasn't changed in a decade. In recent election seasons, however, these moderate voices have been drowned out by hard-line shouting on both sides. In the past, an evangelical who might condone abortion in the case of his ailing wife or 14-year-old daughter would never say so in public. Now, the abortion rhetoric has faded somewhat as evangelicals turn their attention to other things: AIDS, the environment, Darfur. In 2004, megapastor Rick Warren announced that abortion was a "nonnegotiable" for evangelical voters. This year, he's been silent. What's new, then, is not that a pastor like Hamilton would take a softer approach to abortion, but that he would feel comfortable enough to say so from the pulpit and in print.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Football and politics

Is it really possible for a football coach to endorse a candidate for president?

You mean, it really wasn't Bartman's fault?

Thanks, Moises, for clearing that up.

I can't believe we're still talking about this.

And apparently Bartman isn't the only one who wants to move on. Says Aramis Ramirez:

"Like I've said before, he probably had a shot to make a play, but the ball was in the stands," Ramirez said. "Any other fan in that situation would have done the same thing because they all do that, every time. I don't know if [Alou] was going to make the play or not, but he had a shot to make it."

Why are we still talking about this? Oh, that's right, because it's the closest the Cubs have come to getting in to the World Series in 63 years, except for the time when Leon Durham pulled a Bill Buckner two years before Bill Buckner did it...

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Bush booed before throwing out first pitch

I don't really feel a need to comment on this.

That about sums it up.

From the Trib:

When Kosuke Fukudome hit a three-run homer off Milwaukee closer Eric Gagne to tie the season opener in the bottom of the ninth inning Monday, fans all over Wrigley Field held up professionally made signs with English words on one side and Japanese on the other.

It was meant to be a two-sided version of the phrase "It's Gonna Happen." But something got lost in translation, and the Japanese side read: "It's An Accident."

Sunday, March 30, 2008

I'm officially sick of 1908

And tomorrow is only Opening Day.

Do these editors think they're the only ones to realize it's been 100 years or something? Originality? Hello?

In other news, thanks the Good Lord, they are finally tearing down the gigantic ash tray that is Shea Stadium.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Top Five Fridays

This is a really good idea, which I will probably steal.

OK, My five favorite things about baseball:

5. The strikeout

4. The double play

3. Tight uniform pants

2. Red Sox fans

1. "Dad, do you wanna have a catch?"

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Opening Day is a week away

How much snow do you think there will be on the infield?

While we're at it, any bets on how many times broadcasters will mention 1908 this year?

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Why, TV, why?!?

The most ridiculous show on TV gets more ridiculous. The most satisfying show with the most dreamy guy is screwed by the writers strike until next year. And the best comedy currently in production has no second season in sight. Why do we bother even having a satellite dish? Oh wait, I remember: so I can watch the Cubs not get into the World Series for the hundredth year in a row.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Lust



looks like this.


If I had a whole extra $1000 laying around, I could also go for a pair of these and a couple pairs of these.


Sunday, March 16, 2008

Pink Ladies


Pink Lady apples are by far the most superior kind of apple there is. I just ate a Granny Smith, which used to be my favorite, and it was like drinking a can of Bud after spending a week in Europe drinking fresh Czech beer on tap in squares in fabulous cities.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Trader Joe's still sucks


Here's another reason to hate TJ's: too much packaging. Why the hell do they need all this styrofoam and plastic to sell squash?? Stupid, stupid Trader Joe's.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

"Just when you thought the Cubs were done being so Cub."

Gotta love this from Steve Rosenbloom:

On second thoughts: Soriano should heed the fifth

Cubs manager Lou Piniella says Alfonso Soriano will bat second, the
one spot that he seems least equipped to handle, what with the need
for plate discipline and sacrifice. In fact, Aramis Ramirez is better
equipped to hit second than Soriano is, if only because Ramirez
doesn't strike out nearly as much.

If Soriano's constant leg problems mean he isn't a threat to steal
bases, as the Cubs believe, then he is simply a power hitter who
strikes out a lot, which sounds like he should be hitting fifth. The
rumored No. 5 hitter Kosuke Fukudome, meanwhile, comes with the
scouting report of being a hybrid of Ichiro Suzuki and Hideki Matsui
-- you know, all the skills you'd want for a guy in the 2-hole.

But no.

Right now, manager Lou Piniella has it the other way around. Just when
you thought the Cubs were done being so Cub.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

I'm concerned

I'm concerned. I'm concerned because George Lucas is a freakin whack job. He bought a bunch of land that's pretty much in a national park, and he might be part hyena. Most concerning is what I read in a recent issue of Vanity Fair, which I don't normally read, but was given to me by my friend who subscribes and noted the article about the new Indiana Jones movie, which she knows I would be VERY interested in. The article says that Lucas came up with some nutty idea for the plot to the new movie, which no one else (Harrison Ford, Spielberg, etc) liked. But Lucas insisted that it was this plot or nothing. And they were like, well, ok. So that concerns me. I'm also worried that he's going to CGI the shit out of it and ruin it that way. Now there's a new trailer out. Which I had to read about in the freaking CHRONICLE, for pete's sake. I have kids; I go to two movies a year! Throw me a bone!

Also, this kid who plays his son looks like kind of a dork.

But on the bright side, Karen Allen is going to be in the movie, which can only be a good thing. It's my belief that the strong female lead is key to the quality Indy movie, along with worthy adversaries, i.e., Nazis. In this case, Commies. Which might be sufficient.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

There are a lot of countries

45


This is interesting, especially because it requires that you be able to SPELL all of them!!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Road Rage cards

This is a great idea. Of course, I came up with it years ago! It's a bit of overkill, though. You really only need three:

GET OFF YOUR PHONE
USE YOUR TURN SIGNAL
LEARN HOW TO DRIVE

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Buh-bye, Merc

Well, we finally did it. After almost nine years of continuous subscription -- and about two of me agitating to dump it -- we finally canceled the Mercury News. I convinced Nathan to let me do it a couple weeks ago, and I finally got around to calling yesterday. Finally, we're free from the tyranny of all those ad inserts and crappy Dennis Rockstrah columns!

Seriously, with the MediaNews buy-out and preceeding and resulting cuts, it was becoming a lousy newspaper. Yesterday's new version of the real estate section just reaffirmed our decision. Now, the only thing we'll really miss is the Fry's section.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

TGIED

Now that the day has finally arrived, my phone will stop ringing! My husband's "independent" status has elicited at least a dozen phone calls over the last two weeks from everyone from Barrack Obama to Bradley Whitford (couldn't they get Martin Sheen?), but mostly Obama volunteers, telling him he can request a Democratic (their word, Pete) ballot and vote in the primary. (Yesterday's two calls from Hillary Clinton are what I believe woke my son up from his nap.)

I think I'm going to turn my phone off in mid-October and tell our friends and family to call our cell phones or send us an email instead.