Archive for October, 2010

Well hey it feels like Halloween out there. I’ll say this; Autumn in DC does not disappoint. The hairy little man I share my apartment with is in high gear due to the drop in temperature. He brings me a new present almost every day now. This morning it was a medium sized rat severed in half that I nearly stepped on as I left out the back door for work. Very sweet.

Here’s another little gift for Halloween, courtesy of The Mohel. Silly good fun. You’ll have to watch the 30 Rock episode to get the joke. So, you should do that.

Also, despite the fact that my mother reamed me a little for not going to the Glenn Beck thing as well, I might actually try to make the small, ironic gathering on the Mall tomorrow. Some friends who know how to keep things in perspective and have a good time are going and the opportunity to tag along has been extended. I could always make it a picture-taking thing. The sign competition lends itself to that pretty well. The best one I’ve heard so far (also courtesy of The Mohel) is “You’re With Stupid.” Also, Father Guido Sarducci will be there. Let it sink in.

But God I do hate a good crowd…We’ll see…I actually had to ask the office folk if the crowd aversion made me old and crotchety. After the requisite, “You kids get off my lawn!” outburst, one of the workfolk reminded me that this is only true if I hate crowds of young people only. “Do you want to go to an event that the AARP puts on? No? Then you’re fine.”

Also, in honor of Halloween and because I pretty much choose to stay intellectually between the ages of 9 and 12, I recommend you watch this film sometime this weekend. Or read the book. Also great. And it’s Ray Bradbury. Let it sink in.

And, because it seems appropriate, I am in love with the choreographer and I miss dancing like this, here. Let. It. Sink. In.

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Where can I get one?

Thank you god of laughter. I needed this.
(h/t Dr. Josi)

Bird Hunted To Near Extinction Due To Infuriating ‘Fuck You’ Call

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Okay it seems to be the topic of the day so, what the hell, I’ll weigh in. It is what I do apparently. So I’m new to DC. I have a list of “have-to-do” things that people are increasingly insisting are instrumental in my becoming a beltway insider. Having sex while touching the Washington Monument is my favorite so far. But something is happening that I’m not actively pursuing but is chasing me down and hitting me in the face. Viciously. I’m learning about motivation. Specifically, political motivation. More specifically, political motivation of large groups of people.

I speak of course about the Fear/Sanity Rally scheduled for this Saturday. I want so badly to be excited about it. I have friends who are anxiously awaiting the opportunity to wear their Halloween costumes and go listen to Jon Stewart tell them they are correct to feel…whatever it is they feel. And that’s where I guess I get confused. And why I feel, for the most part, apprehensive more than anything else.

Because, according to conversations I’ve had in the past several days with those attending, it’s not a political rally. It’s just for fun. This article explains the motivation (or, more appropriately, lack of motivation, for attendance).

But then Oprah and Arianna Huffington are busing attendees in by the thousands I hear. And they most certainly are politically motivated. So…I guess it just seems strange to cast aspersions on people who acknowledge they really do care like the Tea Party (and call them terrible, really offensive, names) and then staunchly assert that, hey man, whatever; I don’t care. It seems like a cake-and-eating it too thing. But then, there’s probably some joy at having been clever enough to pull that one off.

A friend of mine says this rally is really about a few simple things. The chance to be a part of a semi-political event, while supporting comedians they love, being social and allowing themselves to be entertained. And that we should take joy in their joy. And that the expression “I don’t get those people” is something no rational person can really cling to anymore. “I don’t agree with those people” however is a different animal, she says. (you are a wise woman Ms. Terrell…)

So I can get behind that. I can celebrate the need to gather and have fun. I’ve even been invited to go. I’ll be down there anyway for the Georgia/Florida beat down I assume so it’s just a question of going a little early and checking out the crowd.

But then, I didn’t attend the Glenn Beck thing because I have the same ambivalence about these kinds of gatherings no matter where they originate. And crowds. Not a fan. Unless there’s some purely awesome music and/or dance happening.

So party on people. Make it worthwhile. Here’s hoping something great happens. Maybe I’ll see you there.

But I do have one remaining question: is it too much to ask that the same kind of courtesy — recognizing the true flavor of the event, understanding where the enjoyment lies for those attending, etc. — be extended to the next group that rallies that you don’t “agree” with?

Personally, my nerves will thank you.

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I don’t feel older…

  • It’s official: I’m (almost) an “older voter.” Thanks Gibbs/The Daily Show. Just what I needed to hear. This actually makes me even more apprehensive about this rally because it would appear to be even more of a choir preach than I had previously thought…I thought this kind of in-the-tank rally was supposed to be offensive (ahem, Glenn Beck…)
  • Speaking of aging, this is good piece from a still beautiful woman that elicited the opposite feeling from the one sarcastically alluded to above. Could have done without the Sarah Palin dig at the end because aging truly is a bipartisan event. But whatever. Still thoughtful, and she’s married to Rik Ocasek which deserves mad props.
  • Speaking of, still a great tune: Since You’re Gone ~ The Cars
  • Mr. West sent this along. Interesting read. But I think trying to link the tea party to the Republicans over fiscal issues is a stretch. But the shout out to Ryan is fantastic.
  • For you Liz. I know you wear it with pride.
  • I’m sorry but I want to see “The Beaver.” The movie, ingrates.
  • Finally, because the hip-hop teachers at the studio have been experimenting with some lyrical/hip-hop (and I have been just swimming in it! Joy!), here again is one of the best I’ve seen.  

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Because here very recently I’ve had encounters with different women — one was ideologically motivated, the other motivated by something altogether less rational and decidedly more disturbing (not to mention totally unjustified and juvenile) — that prefaced my reading about this when I got to the office this morning. The thing about mean girls (as any girl unfortunate enough to run up on a mean girl — and that pretty much includes all of us — can attest), it’s best to just ignore them if you can. And it’s a well-traveled slippery slope to become what you behold by allowing the mean girl to dictate your own behavior and turn you into one of them. I know — it’s a struggle every time. My point Ms. Dowd is that by trying to convince everyone of just how mean these women are, you have become a mean girl yourself. But then Dana Perino explains this better than I ever could.

I have to miss the Ben Folds concert tomorrow but my friends assure me I’ll get a full report. (Stupid netbook)

With the exception of the outlawing of happy hour — a personal favorite time of day to imbibe — I’ve never been happier to be single in my life. I hope it lasts. (h/t Mr. West)

Also, this is next on the list. Based on this excerpt, it’s exactly how I feel about the juncture of spirituality and sexuality.

Also, want. No, the length isn’t necessary. I just like the cut. And it cracks me up.

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I don’t have much but I’m kinda thinking about this whole Stewart/Colbert rally coming up the day before Halloween. I can’t decide how I feel about it. Because I pretty much feel like this about John Stewart. But I like the idea that the kids are trying to be involved. More later I guess.

For now, this is currently hilarious. I mean just look at the leopard gecko entry a little more than halfway down the homepage. I cannot stop giggling. “Did your tail swallow a candy corn?” I never said I was sophisticated.

And, music from the past. An integrated rock and roll band from the south circa 1970? We totally deserve the bad rep. down there. Clearly.

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Alright so my little netbook’s hard drive is fried to a crisp and so, at some point in the near future, I’ll be replacing that sucker and recovering all the software. In the meantime, my boss, in a gesture I’ve been heretofore unfamiliar with in a working environment, allowed me to go and upgrade with a new laptop on her dime until I can afford to pay her back. Nice gesture. Acts of random kindness are inspiring.

So, as a result, all my documents are backed up to an external drive and I can’t access my notes from yesterday’s blogger’s briefing. But there was some interesting information about the savings to the country — not to mention the number of jobs created — should we begin to supplant some of the government employees with private-sector contractors. There will be more on this when I get the new equipment set up. For now though, I’ll mention the representative from the Chamber of Commerce who, in a heartfelt moment of thanks, pointed out his gratitude to a few of the reporters/bloggers who stayed on this story until the White House pretty much had to eat their words. I understand this latest PR effort but, as this piece proves, the effort to malign character using some kind of false equivalence (love this expression) between the Citizens United case and Plessy v. Ferguson (I know…what?) is really tasteless and, I’ll say it, old. Tired. Weak. Anyway, Mr. Cleary, who wrote this ChamberPost piece, just wanted to say thanks. He recognized I think how nice it is to have people willing to stand up for you. Again, random kindness.

Also, read this. I have nothing to add. One of the greatest managers of all time.

Got an email from The Mohel that said “If you ever need us to proofread your blog…” with this link included. Just read the correction at the top. Dang man.

This book will be awesome. Sociologists/anthropologists must be drooling at the thought…

Finally, here’s your music. Athens band, cool guys, great country music. Dave’s voice is just thick melted chocolate.

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I include that quote because it felt good to have my Dad do the verbal beat down — even if it was just to me — on someone who’s been causing me grief. It’s a mixed bag though. When you grow up with strong men protecting you — a fearless Southern mountain man and his four sons (my brothers), you get lazy about protecting yourself. No room for laziness now though I guess. Time to battle the ghosts.

New good band name: Hobo Throwdown

Okay enough of that nonsense. I have some cell phone pics for the sister. But first, here’s a link to a cool flick I was lucky enough to catch the trailer to at Heritage. They actually screened it the same day but I had to miss the full monty. Hoping the chance comes around again. I hope the general idea catches on. I mean, logic is hard to drive holes through so watching attempts to debate the veracity of this stuff should be awesome.

“When people convince me I am wrong, I change my mind.” ~ John Maynard Keynes

Just sayin’.

So, here’s the music for today. I interviewed this guy ages ago when this album was released. There were only a few songs I liked but this one has stuck with me ever since.

Elephant’s Memory

14th street on a drive home

The Alexandria Waterfront. Good for lunchtime reading.

Christ Church. George Washington's church. For real. Good for lunchtime meditating.

The porch at the Daingerfield House. Good for lunchtime people watching.

If I drive to work, which I do sometimes, here's a view from the ride home. I'd love one from the GW Parkway but it's dangerous business snapping pictures at full-throttle. I know. I've tried.

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Yeah, I got nothing. Except an insatiable need to devour the ginger/molasses with lemon cream frosting cupcake sitting on my desk while sipping on some afternoon coffee. Also, Steph, thanks for the hours long talk last night. It meant so much. It’s a remarkable thing for a woman to have a girlfriend who is a rational voice offering common sense. Too often I think the stereotype of the emotional female response tends to be correct. So your wisdom and positive outlook were welcomed, encouraging and — not to be overly hyperbolic — somewhat soul-cleansing. So, this song goes out to you. I love you. Can’t wait to see you ’round Thanksgiving.

The Wrong Band

and while we’re at it:


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Sorry Juge. No pictures. I just couldn’t pull myself together enough to take any. Maybe I’ll do a little exploring here in the near future — the first really crisp, sunny Fall day — and take some then.

In any event, here’s a new SSP. There’s a mistake in it, but I think the general opinion is intact. Also, have some reading on energy. The DOE spending $50 million on hydroelectric power research is definitely an indication of an earnestness in an effort to begin the move from oil to alternative sources. I just hope their business plan takes into account that abrupt change — unless absolutely necessary — tends to be destructive rather than productive. I just remember this great local coffee shop in Athens called Blue Sky that, because of financial reasons and a fear that their competitors down the street and around the corner were going to take their business, converted in the space of a few months into a restaurant of the same name. It failed within a year. What had once been a thriving coffee shop became a sparsely attended restaurant that served coffee. They, out of fear, jumped the gun, failed to anticipate what the public would digest, and handed their business over to their competitors. It’s just an interesting microcosm is all I’m saying. Here are two other pieces to round out the issue. One on the reliability of the science behind climate change and the other on other alternatives to coal and oil.

Okay, now to fun. I found a video store at the top of my street that is fantastic. I’m a new member. And one of my first rentals (I’ve seen it but needed the reminder) was Penelope. And my ridiculous girlish crush on James McAvoy was reaffirmed. I mean c’mon man…

And also, thanks to my good friend Mrs. Bielli, I was reminded of one of my favorite songs. It comes at a time when ghosts from the past are knocking on my door. So, again, good reminder. Thanks Mrs. Bielli. I miss your crazy antics.

And, here’s my favorite from the man’s vast catalog of awesome.

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