Lunch, Part II, Plus Some Chick Stuff

Friday, February 29, 2008

I had lunch with Hot Blogger Anne yesterday, and here is our required photographic evidence. As usual, Anne was thoughtful, funny and gracious. She's a Good Egg, and I'm glad serendipity (or Scalzi - whatever) brought us together. We're starting to make plans for Denvention 3.

::Rubs hands together gleefully::

Here commences the Chick Stuff.

You'll also note I finally took the plunge and cut my hair. I'm still wrestling it into submission, so I haven't decided if I like or not. I have decided I'm bored with the blond look, though, so I'll be changing the color this weekend to flame red. I love red hair. Of course I'll be keeping the Heinlein red at least through WorldCon, since RAH is the Ghost of Honor.

And for you men? Here you go:

Who Cares? Magazine, Volume 2, Issue 9


Hulk Hogan has been cheating on his wife with his daughters's best friend! The marriage is over! Who Cares!

Remember Me

Thursday, February 28, 2008

I'm proud of you. I remember.

Which SF Writer are You?

Courtesy of Tania.

Big Surprise.

I am:
Robert A. Heinlein
Beginning with technological action stories and progressing to epics with religious overtones, this take-no-prisoners writer racked up some huge sales numbers.


Which science fiction writer are you?

Internet Meme - Getting to Know You

I got this from Jim Wright, who got it from Story Bones, who got it from Camille Alexa. I don't know Camille got it - she may have written it her ownself, or gotten it from somewhere else. If you really want to track it down, feel free to contact Jack Bauer to take on the task.

So here are my answers:

1) Ever been in a relationship lasting over 5 years?
Yes, I've been with my Smart Man for 10 years in April, and I was with the father of my children for 7 years.

2) What was one of your dreams growing up?
To be a marine biologist, working with Orcas.

3) What talent do you wish you had?
I wish I was athletic. I'm not. I can barely get out of bed without falling on my ass. I just don't have any natural ability.

4) If I bought you a drink what would it be?
My standard drink is Mike's Light Cranberry, but I really like those funky fruity fru-fru drinks, like Mango Daiquiri. Hmm...

5) Favorite books?
To Sail Beyond the Sunset by Robert Heinlein
Relic by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
The Neanderthal Parallax by Robert Sawyer
Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein
Damage by Jacqueline Hart

6) What was the last book you read?
Darwin's Children by Greg Bear

7) Astrology: Menace to science education or entertainment?
Menace. Definitely a menace.

8) Any tattoos and/or piercings? Explain where.
Ear piercing. Four tattoos - one on my stomach, one on my left arm, one on my left ankle, and one on my right calf.

9) Worst habit?
I smoked for years and years. Then my Smart Man and I quit together six or seven years ago. But that's a story for another day.

10) Best attribute?
Generosity.

11) What are your favorite hobbies?
Knitting, Reading, Blogging, cooking, then eating the cooking, watching television, SHOPPING.

12) Do you have a negative or optimistic attitude?
It depends. Sometimes I'm ridiculously optimistic in terms of wanting people I know to do the right thing. Yet I expect politicians and other public people to act the ass. Weird.

13) What would you do if you were stuck in an elevator with me?
I'm a bit claustrophobic, so I'd try real hard not to cling to you in wild-eyed panic.

14) Worst thing to ever happen to you?
That's a tough one. Everyone has their crosses to bear. However, my father died of alcoholism much too young, and never knew my children.

15) Best thing to ever happen to you?
I finally pulled my emotional head out of my ass, which allowed me to enjoy and maintain meaningful relationships with friends and family.

16) Tell me one weird fact about you.
When it comes to my dog Boogie the Giant Schnauzer, I am completely soft.

17) What if I showed up at your house unexpectedly?
You'd be invited to dinner, of course.

18) What was your first impression of me? (Since I swiped this list from Jim Wright's site, I'll answer him).
Hm, a Navy vet, like me. Hey! He's kind of funny! Why does he live in Alaska? It's cold there. He seems like a smart, honorable guy. Hey! He's got a blog! How come I didn't know he had a blog?

19) What scares you?
Losing people close to me due to circumstances beyond my control.

20) If you could change one thing about how you are, what would it be?
I want to be able to eat whatever I want, whenever I want. Like that's ever going to happen.

21) Would you be my crime partner or my conscience?
I'd be your crime partner, but we'd only do crime against the immoral and wicked, in order to sooth my conscience.

22) What color eyes do you have?
Green, the color of polluted sea water.

23) Ever been arrested? If so, what for?
Nope, not even when I should of been. I follow the 11th Commandment.

24) Favorite dessert?
Stephen Colbert's Americone Dream Ice Cream.

25) If you won $1000 today, what would you do with it?
Save some, spend some. Probably on the shiny.

26) Tell me something you want me to know about you.
My guilty pleasure is watching "Psych" on the USA Network.

27) What's your favorite place to hang out?
My house - usually my desk.

28) Do you believe in ghosts? Aliens?
No ghosts. Aliens? Yes, in the sense that I believe there are non-Terran life forms in the universe.

29) Favorite thing to do in your spare time?
Read, baby. I never have enough time to read...

30) Do you swear a lot?
Fuckin' A Skippy, baby. Like a sailor.

31) Biggest pet peeve?
There's so many!! Let's see...Young Earth Creationists. Those who try and push their unverifiable beliefs on others. Parents who don't take care of their children to the best of their ability. People who abuse or abandon their pets. Trolls. People who talk loudly on their cell phones in the grocery store. Insomnia. Willful ignorance. People who run red lights. I could go on for days, really.

32) In one word, how would you describe yourself?
HOT

33) Do you believe in/appreciate romance?
Only if it's sincere and thoughtful. Contrived romance is vomit inducing.

34) Most unusual place you've had sex?
Hot Chicks don't tell.

35) Do you believe in an afterlife?
I wish. In spite of my skeptical leanings, I would really like to be able to suspend disbelief and live a life of faith. I envy that in others. I just can't bring myself to do it, though.

New Mouse Pad

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

This is the new mouse pad I ordered from SkepChick. I really like SkepChick, mostly because Rebecca Watson makes me laugh my ass off.

And did I mention I like monkeys?

I like monkeys.

What Horrible Affliction Are You?

Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Directed by Random Michelle, I just had to find out what horrible affliction I am:

I am Rickets. Hear your bones go boing.
Which Horrible Affliction are you?
A Rum and Monkey disease.

Clearly, I don't have enough to do.

Intellect versus Morality

When I was a younger woman, I was incredibly impressed with intellect. Not with education, which I considered a separate accomplishment, but with the raw gift of intelligence and all its applications.

In those days, I would forgive a myriad of sins if the perpetrator was smart. Arrogant? Unkind? Insincere? It's all good, as long as you've got it going on between your ears.

This tendency led to some really, really poor choices in terms of my interpersonal relationships, both platonically and romantically.

Thank goodness for the ability to learn, even though it took longer than it should of.

I have learned that being smart isn't everything. There are other qualities that matter more. Honesty. Kindness. Faithfulness. Morality.

The root of my learning is that people should be given credit for things they have control over. If you're an intelligent human being, your natural gifts are not to your credit - you received them by virtue of your ancestry and the roll of the genetic dice. It's not like you get to choose. So while you're a lucky, lucky person if you've got the genetic gift of intelligence, please recognize that the native ability is just that - luck.

What you do with your gifts is another issue. And it's the heart of the matter.

If you use your gifts to make the world a better place by helping others, being a contributing member of society, and displaying a generosity of spirit, then you're deserving of admiration and respect, regardless of your native intelligence.

If you use your gifts to enhance only your own situation, taking advantage of others and lining your own pocket, then you're a hideous arse-candle, deserving of of contempt, regardless of your native intelligence.

The older I get, the more value I place on the things people have control over - whether or not you're kind, whether or not you have a generosity of spirit, whether or not you're a good friend and neighbor. While I still enjoy intellectual stimulation, and enjoy being around intelligent people, I'm pickier now. You can be the smartest person on the planet, but that doesn't forgive your bad behavior. If you're a hideous arse-candle, then I don't want to be around you.

But if you're kind, generous, moral, then you're welcome in my life. Because that's what matters.

Darwin's Children by Greg Bear

Monday, February 25, 2008
I love Greg Bear's books. They're thought-provoking, complex, and always on the cutting edge of science.

Darwin's Children, Bear's sequel to Darwin's Radio, is no exception. Darwin's Radio, the winner of the 2000 Nebula Award, tells the story of a new form of endogenous retrovirus called SHEVA. It controls human evolution by rapidly evolving the next generation while in the womb, leading to speciation. Darwin's Children is the story of how our society handles these "new children," and the impact they have on our society.

Well. As you'd expect, society does not simply say, "Oh, Goody - the next wave of humans, here to displace us! Let's celebrate!" Aside from being highly unlikely, it wouldn't make a very interesting book.

This is a classic story of Government Behaving Badly. The "virus children" are taken away from their parents, and placed in what is essentially an internment camp. They're poked and prodded, and their natural, instinctive social structure (which, as you can imagine, is not the same as ours) is blocked and the children are punished if they try and interact naturally.

I have to say that I did find this sequel to be inferior to Darwin's Radio. There were strange asides, including a scenario where one of the main characters experiences what can only be called visitations from God. The story didn't seem as tight, and I had a hard time "connecting" with the New Children emotionally, aside from the natural empathy I had for a minority group being persecuted. My lack of an emotional connection to the New Children might have been done purposefully, since their alien nature was part of the story.

The science, though.

In my opinion, no modern science fiction author does a better job on the science than Greg Bear. Many of the scientific concepts in this book are extremely controversial, and Mr. Bear freely admits that. But that's why it's science fiction. He's taking cutting edge science and running with it - all the way to the end zone.

Pimpin'

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Our buddy Jim Wright is selling some of his hand-made bowls over at Stonekettle Station. They're lovely and unique, and while technical difficulties such as the weather and an unreliable broadband connection are delaying his posting of all of the work for sale, he's made some progress, which can be found here.

Our other buddy Shawn Riley is also selling hand-made wood items over at Beastly. The last time I checked, he had not yet posted his inventory (hint, hint), but you can certainly leave him a comment in this blog and ask for what you want. A sample of his work can be found here.

Lastly, our other other buddy Shawn Powers and his lovely wife lead the youth group at their church. They're trying something new this Easter season, and leading their kids in a "hunger strike" as a fund-raising event for World Vision. I checked out the charity over at Charity Navigator, and it appears they Do Good Work, using 86% of their proceeds for program costs. Shawn's post, and how to contribute, can be found here.

Not that my readership is massive, or anything, but feel free to pimp your favorite project or soapbox issue in the comment threads. Unless you're a spammer. Then you get the Shovel of Doom™.

Budweiser Clydesdale's

Saturday, February 23, 2008

video

I love the Budweiser Clydesdale's. When I was a teenager, I would perform in the National Western Stock Show and Rodeo every year with the Westernaires. Most years, Budweiser would send one of their Clydesdale teams to perform, as well. The drivers were always kind and gracious, tolerating the gaggles of girls who hung around. Of course, the fact that my Hot Mom would donate 10 pounds of homemade fudge to the crew every year might of had something to do with that.

In any case, this is a Budweiser commercial I had never seen before. It was evidently made right after 9/11. Enjoy.

Lovely New Shiny

Friday, February 22, 2008


This is my FABULOUS new hand-made bowl, which arrived in yesterday's post. It's made of spalted maple, and I LOVE IT.

Those of you who also frequent Stonekettle Station might think that Jim made this lovely piece of art. Well, you'd be wrong. Jim's too busy whining about how humid it is and how much he's sacrificing for his art to actually get anything in the mail.

Okay, not really. I'm just being a whiney bint - I already have a Jim Wright original. I just want another one, because I'm a greedy, greedy materialist with no concept of sharing.

This piece was turned by our very own Beastly, who I'm delighted to report is much more conscientious about his art than he is about his blog.

I think he has other pieces for sale and he's using the proceeds for a very good cause - he's saving for enough gas to get him from New York to Alaska this summer.

Come on, Hot Chicks and Smart Men. Pony up for art. Pony up for friendship. Just pony up. 'Cause you know you want one.

Who Cares? Magazine, Volume 2, Issue 8


Is Gary Coleman's marriage a hotbed of violence and grief? Did he really try to run over his wife Shannon with his truck? Could he reach the pedals? Who Cares!

On the Nature of Trolls

Thursday, February 21, 2008
Over at Stonekettle Station, Jim Wright was waxing philosophic on the Nature of Trolls. I found his definition so very accurate, that I'm reprinting it here, with his permission. That way I can point back to it when a troll arrives and say "Here's your mirror, ASSHAT."

So here is the definition of a Troll, courtesy of Jim Wright:

"1) Almost without exception, people who engage in trollish behavior use online handles instead of their names. I find this fairly telling. I suspect that in real life they are unhappy, friendless jerks of the sort who believe that it's the rest of the world who is responsible for their misery. Without exception, trolls lack respect for any opinion other than their own, even if a commenter agrees with them. The very fact that there are opinions other than their own seems to make them insane, and they immediately resorted to bluster, name calling, and empty threats. However, I suspect that in real life they are timid cowardly creatures who can only find their courage when hiding behind the anonymity of pseudonyms. I suspect that in real life, they are the type of people who lie about themselves, their experience, their past - to make themselves seem more interesting, more important, or more credible than everyone else around themselves. I suspect that as a species, trolls hate themselves even more than they hate others, and the only thing that keeps them from slitting their own throats is the belief that the world simply couldn't survive without them - I think they regard their behavior as a public service.

"2) I find trollish pseudonyms enlightening. Take 'Sgt E" for example in the above 'e' link. Here's a guy who by his own admission, was in the Marines for about ten years, leaving the service about ten years ago. Yet he still identifies himself by his (assumed) former military rank. I suspect, though I don't know him personally (and really, really wouldn't want to), that he is one of those blowhard assholes who demands respect and attention for his service all those years ago. I suspect he is one of those annoying vets who constantly brings up his former military experience, regardless of it's relevancy, in every conversation - because it's the only thing he has. By his own admission his experience in the combat zone was brief and limited, and is now a decade or more out of date - yet he considers himself an expert in all things military, or even vaguely military related, or anything not military related. It's fairly apparent to me that he considers his former service as a trump card in any conversation, military related or not. I know a few folks like this, and they are without exception avoided by everybody around them. I suspect that the online community is the only form of sustained interaction they get.

"3) Trolls, as a group, seem to require validation. They constantly list their (supposed) credentials, relevant to the situation or not. I.e. "As a former National Guard supply clerk, short order cook, IT Wizard, and dog groomer I'm sure everyone will agree with me when I say your opinion of The Princess Bride theme song is totally lame and that you are stupid and ugly." There are times when your background is relevant and it is necessary to state your experience in a conversation - but trolls do it in almost every post. This, to me, speaks volumes about their lack of self worth and self confidence.

"4) Trolls seem to require conflict. They seem to be incapable of interacting with other people on any kind of equitable or respectful basis. I suspect that in real life, they are the annoying dickheads who manage to insinuate themselves into every meeting or presentation and who constantly argue over minor points and throw up roadblocks until you just want to beat them over their square heads with the powerpoint projector.

"5) Trolls are incapable of letting go. They must always have the last word. They must. Have the last word. Always. Must.

"6) Trolls cannot admit error. They may start out sounding fairly reasonable, but they will inevitably, and in short order, resort to the most inane and bizarre rationalizations to justify their positions. They consider themselves intellectuals, and they'll link and quote and cherry pick any source to make their point. The argument, whatever it may be, is the single most important thing in their pitiful lives, if they lose, they lose it all.

"7) Trolls have no sense of humor, they are deadly serious about everything - even humor.

"8) Trolls always, without exception, consider themselves 'students of the human condition.' When called on their obnoxious behavior by a third party, they will invariably reply that they are just trying to provoke a 'real' response in their targets in order to 'understand the situation better.' They consider their bile and vitriol justified because they are 'trying to cut through the bullshit and get to the heart of the matter.'

"9) Trolls consider politeness and respect to be the purview of small minds and the weak. A real man speaks his mind, bluntly, and lets the chips fall where they may. If you're offended by anything a troll says, it's your failing, not his.

"10) Trolls are offended by anything and everything, no matter what the subject or the context. Trolls can twist any off-hand comment into a personal insult. When countered, Trolls will inevitably decide that even though they aren't insulted per se, the commenter has insulted a large group that they're a part of, i.e. Dog Groomers, Evangelicals, the Marines, America, Martian Americans, something, and it is the Troll's civic duty to take up the sword in the offended party's defense."

Thanks, Jim. As you know, I'm never interested in doing bloggy work that I can steal from somewhere else. :-)

Some Thoughts on Diversity

My DU class for this quarter is on Organizational Behavior, and as previously mentioned, for the most part, it's been a huge waste of time and money. One of my books should actually be entitled "How To Become a Manipulative SOB in Ten Easy Steps!" and the other "The Ultimate Cure for Insomnia!"

One of my assignments for this class is to interview individuals on an organizational behavior topic of my choice. I selected diversity, because I have an interest in it, and I was curious about how other people viewed diversity in my company.

The results have been fascinating.

The most obvious result is that people who are in non-management positions, regardless of their minority status, believe the company does a really poor job of managing diversity. People in management positions, regardless of their minority status, believe the company does a fabulous job of managing diversity.

Quite the disconnect, huh?

When I ask for details surrounding these views, the non-management types usually cite the complete lack of people of color above a certain level. The management types usually cite how very sensitive they are in terms of their own commitment to diversity.

Hmm.

The non-management types have a point. When I attend our yearly convention, I look over the auditorium during the general sessions and see a sea of white faces, with a very occasional sprinkling of color. When the leadership teams take the stage, you even lose the sprinkle. While I'm not a proponent of quotas, I still have a hard time believing that in every case, all the most qualified candidates for these top tier positions are white, and most are male. It stretches the bounds of coincidence, at least in my mind.

Another dichotomy is the effort that's made between divisions that are primarily blue collar versus those that are white collar. The organizational efforts made to manage diversity seem to be much more evident in the blue collar divisions than in the white collar divisions. Almost as if the white collar jobs are above such things, while we'll throw diversity bones to the proles.

The other aspect of my research that I find interesting is people's awareness of unearned privilege. The Angry Black Woman has done a stellar job of explaining both White Privilege and Male Privilege, so I won't get into it here, other than to say that the term "privilege" in this context doesn't refer to your socioeconomic status or stereotypes, but the assumptions the world makes about you based purely on your race and gender. It's a fundamental aspect of how you interact with the world, whether you're aware of it or not.

Which brings me to the "awareness" aspect. In my interviews, individuals who fell into a protected class, either by virtue of race or gender, were aware of unearned privilege, even if they weren't aware of the technical term for it. Individuals who did not fall into a protected class were not aware of the idea in any form. In some cases, they were not only not aware of it, they denied its very existence.

I found that last part especially telling. These individuals lack the basic empathy to even consider the idea that our society will view and react to someone different from themselves...differently. And people wonder why race and gender relations are still an issue in this country?

Everyone I interviewed was shocked to learn of the study Anne pointed us to that men think they're smarter than they are, and women think they're dumber than they are. The shock only deepened when I pointed out this type of assumption is a classic example of unearned privilege, especially when applied to other people. Amazing how that works.

My own viewpoint is a work in progress. The more I learn, the more my views evolve. I can say that I self-identify first as an American. By accident of birth, I'm a white American, and I'm now keenly aware of the advantages that accident has given me. I've purged my white liberal guilt, because I consider it an insult to people of color. I make more of an effort to inform my decisions and actions with the idea that my norm is not everyone's norm. I've worked through the idea that I'm glad I'm white. I'm grateful for the unearned privilege my accident of birth has given me, and those two feelings don't make me a racist. I feel like my privilege obligates me to be aware of it, and to make an effort to extend that privilege to others who do not fall into the same demographic.

Do I still have work to do? Of course. Do I believe I have a good idea of what it's like to be a black man, an Asian woman, a gay American? Hell, no. But I'm trying.

Conversations with Karma - Fred Phelps

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

*Ring, Ring*

Unidentified Female: Hello?

Karma: Fred Phelps, please.

UF: Uncle Fred! Telephone!

Fred Phelps: Who is it?

UF: May I ask who's calling?

K: Karma.

UF: Cousin Fred! It's Karma!

FP: Karma who?

UF: Karma who?

K: No last name. Just Karma. The eastern idea that you will receive your punishment or reward for your deeds. You know...what comes around goes around, people get what they deserve? Karma.

UF: *Silence*

K: Hello?

UF: I'll get Brother Fred.

FP: Hello?

K: Hello, Reverend Phelps. This is Karma. I'm here to deliver The Good News.

FP: I think you're a Satanist. And I'm quite sure God Hates YOU. How did you get this number?

K: Dude, the number's all over the Internet. And I'm pretty sure your Scripture indicates that God doesn't really hate anybody.

FP: That's a dirty, dirty lie! God was clear - he hates the fags, and the blasphemers, and the Infidels...pretty much everyone. Except me.

K: Hmm. If you say so. Although I'm pretty sure He also looks down on incest.

FP: What's that supposed to mean?

K: I'm sure you'll figure it out, Uncle/Cousin/Brother Fred. Listen, I'm not here to talk about your sickly-straight family tree. There's an event on March 30th, and I wanted to discuss it with you personally.

FP: What event? I didn't hear anything about an event! There's nothing on our picket calendar for that date!

K: Yes, well, I don't think you're invited, Per Se. It's called The Million Fag March, and it's taking place on March 30th. Lots and lots of folks will be picketing your compound in an effort to communicate to you just how unacceptable your actions are.

FP: They can't do that! Me and mine don't want to be exposed to such filth! How dare they!

K: Oh, they dare. You see, it's allowed under that pesky First Amendment. You know, the same amendment that allows you to protest the funerals of fallen service members and slain students.

FP: But they're gay! Ho-mo-sex-shual! It might rub off!

K: Yeah, wouldn't that be a hoot!?

FP: No, it wouldn't be a hoot. I don't feel so good. I should probably lay down.

K: No rest for the wicked, Fred. Better start considering a counter-strategy.

FP: But, but...March 30th is a Sunday! God's day! That's just so disrespectful.

K: YOU THINK?

*Click*

What the Fuck is Wrong With These People? - Westboro Baptist Church

Tuesday, February 19, 2008
As you all know, I'm not a huge fan of Westboro Baptist Church. I think they're a bunch of ignorant fucktards, and their practice of picketing military funerals is simply reprehensible.

Well, evidently picketing military funerals simply isn't a strong enough statement of just how fucked up these people are, because they've decided to expand their activities to include the funerals of two victims of the Northern Illinois University shootings. According to their website, which I will not link for any reason, they plan to protest the funerals of Catalina Garcia and Ryanne Mace today because Northern Illinois University once hosted a conference featuring a preacher who did not share their views.

Huh?

What does the University's decision to host a conference have to do with the funeral services of these victims? I don't get it. Of course I also don't get what the funerals of military service members have to do with them thar gayz in Uhmeri-ka.

What the fuck is wrong with these people? Seriously...what's their deal? Because even though I don't agree with a lot of groups and their politics and policies, usually I can at least understand where they're coming from. With these guys? Not so much. I can't think of a single thing on which I could find common ground with them.

They just suck. On every level. And I really, really hope they get the beat-down they deserve when they rudely interrupt these families' services.

Raising Boys and Girls

Parenthood is hard. Big newsflash, huh? Not so much. No owners manual, no instructions, just the on-the-job training experience from hell.

I do think that raising boys and girls is a different skill set, and that raising girls is much, much harder.

At least that's been my experience.

Not to be propagating stereotypes or anything, but here are my personal observations about raising boys and girls. Please note that my own children don't constitute a statistical universe, so your mileage may vary.
  • Girls are much more emotional than boys, especially once puberty sets in. This manifests in a variety of ways, including head spinning, pea-soup vomiting, and growling exclamations to "get out." While I believe that boys also feel things deeply, they tend to internalize it more. The skill set to deal with girls (calm them down, don't join them in the Court of the Drama Queen) is very different from the set needed to deal with boys (draw them out, don't allow them to internalize their emotions to the point where they explode).
  • The mistakes that boys make tend to be much more straightforward than girls. A boy will break a rule because they want to, and when asked why they made the choice they did, will usually respond with Bill Cosby's perennial favorite, "I don't know." A girl's motivation to break the rule will usually involve some sort of complicated internecine relationship-based justification that requires a Ph.D in psychology to interpret.
  • Boys are lazy, girls aren't. But don't try to make a girl do something she doesn't want to do.
  • Girls like to play the "who's fault is it?" game. Here's a hint: it's never their's. Boys don't play this as much, but will engage in the most stunning dumb-assery for no apparent reason.

That's my experience. Quite frankly, I'll be glad when it's over.

The Bad Astronomer Puts the Smackdown on Answers in Genesis

Monday, February 18, 2008
I love the Bad Astronomer. As an amateur skeptic, I enjoy his use of logic, the scientific method, and pure sarcasm to put the smackdown on the screedy YECers.

Today he puts the website Answers in Genesis in his cross hairs, with pretty decisive results.

Go, Phil.

A Survey - Recent Comments

A while ago, I added a section to the right side of the blog called "recent comments." This section was provided as a courtesy to those who read the comments to let you know when a new comment had been posted. Since I receive E:Mail notification anytime a new comment is left on the blog, I don't care if it's there or not.

So - a survey:

Another Season of Rockies

Tickets for the 2008 season of the Colorado Rockies went on sale on Saturday. Not surprisingly, Opening Day sold out fairly quickly.

My Smart Man and I usually go to Opening Day, but this year we've decided to go to another game in the series, since we're not sure if he can get the day off for Opening Day. I'm sure it'll be fun, but I'm going to put on my curmudgeon hat for a minute.

My Smart Man and I have been going to see the Rockies for 10 years. We usually try to catch at least one game a month, going with various family members or friends. We follow their progress with interest, but we're not obsessive about it.

For most of those 10 years, they have really sucked. It was only last year that they started to perform in a way that caught the interest of the general public, and guess what? Fair-weather fans started to come out of the woodwork. Suddenly everyone was a Rockies fan, and wanted to get in on the act. You couldn't get post-season tickets to save your life, and the World Series ticket sales process was a Class A Goat Rope. Even though we really, really wanted to attend a post-season game, we had no chance to do so.

I'm a curmudgeon because I think all these fair-weather fans can blow me. Smart Man and I have supported the Rocks through thick and thin, and now that they're finally champions, everyone acts like "they knew it all along." Yeah, right. I'm sure they "knew it" the whole time we were going to games in a half-empty stadium.

Liar, liar, pants on fire!

I'll continue to support the Rockies, and I'll continue to think fair-weather fans suck. Because I'm a curmudgeon, and proud of it.

Colorado Finally Gets Diverse

Sunday, February 17, 2008
I'm a student at the University of Denver, where I take on-line classes. I'm majoring in "Global Studies." I follow my degree plan in a general way, but once I have my "required" GE classes taken care of, I'll be taking whatever sounds interesting.

I have a DU e:mail account, where the University sends me DU related communications. Yesterday, I received an E:Mail announcing a change in their non-discrimination policy:

"We would like to inform you of a significant policy change impacting all areas of our campus community. Effective Nov. 13, 2007, the Board of Trustees adopted a change to DU's non-discrimination policy to include protections based on gender identity and gender expression. This change was adopted in order to reflect a recent change in Colorado state employment law, which provides for similar protections."

My first reaction was, you mean your non-discrimination policy didn't cover gender identity and gender expression before?

According to the Gay and Lesbian Fund of Colorado, "On May 25, 2007, Governor Bill Ritter signed Senate Bill 07-025, expanding Colorado’s employment nondiscrimination protections to include sexual orientation. This new law defines sexual orientation as a person’s orientation toward heterosexuality, homosexuality, bisexuality, or transgender status. In Colorado, the law is applicable to employers, employment agencies, labor organizations, on-the-job training, and vocational training programs and schools. The law makes it unlawful to consider sexual orientation, gender identity or expression when making employment-related decisions and additionally makes it unlawful to make any inquiry about an applicant’s sexual orientation or gender expression."

I don't know why I found it odd that the transgendered were not a protected class under the old law. Colorado isn't exactly a bastion of diversity and liberal thought (Boulder notwithstanding). Probably because my own employer is extremely inclusive, and has always included the transgender community as a protected class by company policy.

So I'm a bit disappointed in my University, because it appears that my for-profit company has a more inclusive diversity policy than my University.

What the hell's that about?

Fluffy Kitties

Saturday, February 16, 2008
Man. You guys are wimpy-wimpy.

That photo of John Mayer in a Mankini solicited such responses as "I'm blind!", "I'm going to bleach my eyeballs," and "that nasty-ass picture on your blog this morning is just unacceptable... please post some photos of my boys, because [they're] cute, and their business (such as it is) is not displayed in a neon green hammock. Please show some mercy on us. PLEASE."

Jeez. Spoil-sports.

So here's your girlie-man picture of fluffy kitties, courtesy of my Hot Sister, Cindi in CO:




You're welcome.

From the "What the Hell Were You Thinking?" Files - John Mayer

Oh, John Mayer. I love your music. I have all your CD's. I've seen you in concert at the lovely Red Rocks Amphitheatre, and watched you rock the house on the Crossroads Guitar Festival DVD's. You're a gifted song writer, an accomplished guitarist, and an acceptable singer.

I got over your inexplicable attraction to that vacuous twit Jessica Simpson. I looked the other way when you attended the Miley Cyrus "Hannah Montana" concert in Las Vegas.

But now I have this image burned into my retina:



A Mankini? What the hell were you thinking?

Well Behaved Women Rarely Make History, Volume II

Friday, February 15, 2008

This is Aung San Suu Kyi. She lives in Myanmar, where she is under house arrest.

Her incarceration began because she won the general election in 1990, and the military junta refused to relinquish power. She won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991, although she was not permitted to travel to accept it. The military government released her from house arrest in July of 1995 but made it clear that if she left the country to visit her family in the UK, it would not allow her return.

When her husband, Michael Aris, a British citizen, was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1997, the Burmese government denied him an entry visa. Aung San Suu Kyi remained in Burma, and never again saw her husband, who died in March 1999. She remains separated from her children, who live in the United Kingdom.

The junta continually prevented Aung San Suu Kyi from meeting with her party supporters or international visitors. In September 2000, the junta put her under house arrest again, where she remains to this day.

I don't think I would have the strength of character to sacrifice my relationships with my family for a political ideal. But I'm glad she does. Our world is a better place for having her in it, and she is indeed ill-behaved and courageous. Well done, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.

Who Cares? Magazine, Volume 2, Issue 7


Has OJ been beating long-time girlfriend Christie Prody, or did she really hurt herself in a drunken binge, as OJ claims? Who Cares!

Cupid is a Geek

Thursday, February 14, 2008
This year for Valentine's Day, my Smart Man and I decided to exchange geeky gifts.


This is a Canon MP970, my gift from my Smart Man. I wanted a scanner, and decided it would just be so much cooler to have a Ginsu knife kind of apparatus. It slices! It dices! It prints! It scans! It smacks evangelicals upside the head!

Okay, I'm just kidding about that last part. Unfortunately.

My Smart Man wanted a new LogiTech keyboard and mouse, and a new [place pinky on the corner of your mouth] one billion Gig hard drive. Okay, I'm probably exaggerating about the hard drive. But not by much.

We'll be going to dinner tonight without the Smart Boy, and that'll be about it for our Valentine's celebration.

What are your plans?

Evangelism - How I Hate It

Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Evangelism is defined by Wikipedia as "Evangelism is the Christian practice of preaching the Gospel of Jesus to both Christians (i.e., Orthodox and Catholics) and non-Christians." For my purposes, however, I would say this definition would apply to any religion that attempts to "convert the masses."

While I recognize that some individuals sincerely believe they're doing me a favor by evangelizing to me, I really, really, hate evangelism. It offends me deeply. Here's why.

In my view, it is the height of hubris to assume you have a corner on TRUTH. Unless God has spoken to you personally and left physical evidence of His passing, you have no evidence that what you believe on faith is fact. I don't disrespect your faith, as long as you recognize that faith is what it is. I expect the same courtesy in terms of my choice not to believe.

But that's not the evangelical way, is it? Instead they assume only they can save me from myself and my dirty, heathen ways.

Well, guess what? I'm a grown woman, and my failure to be "born again" has nothing to do with not hearing "the good news." I probably know the Bible and Christian dogma better than a lot of Christians, and I'm not convinced. It doesn't have anything to do with my not understanding the Bible, or the idea that Jesus died for my sins. I understand the mythology. I'm just not convinced. And that's okay. It doesn't take away from your faith, and the place your faith plays in your life. It just means your faith has no place in my life. Knocking on my door or cornering me at parties in order to convince me of the error of my ways is not going to make me change my mind; it's far more likely to get you a "no, thank you," followed by a threat of violence if you don't take the hint.

My most current egregious example of this occurred a little over a year ago. The company that cleans our house is owned by a Christian couple, and they tend to hire employees from the local Christian home-schooling community. The young woman who was assigned to our account was gracious, sincere, hardworking, and a Primitive Baptist.

Since she cleaned our house, she noticed one of my bookshelves which contains all my religious texts. I used to be a comparative religion major, and so have copies of texts from most of the major religions of the world, as well as textbooks and atheist texts. She never commented on them, but her God-related commentary increased the longer she worked here.

Well, her last day on the job, she decided it was time to "testify." She brought me a number of religious tracts, including such gems as "What Really Happened to the Dinosaurs?" and "The Case for a Young Earth." Then she proceeded to tell me the "truth" about my evil, dirty ways. At first I was gracious about it, telling her that while I appreciated her concern, I was informed about my religious choices, and did not choose to worship as she did. Well, we can't let a little thing like lack of interest or growing anger interfere with our desire to "spread the word," now, can we? In the end, I had to speak somewhat sharply to get her to drop the subject. The entire event was irritating as hell, although those religious tracts did provide fodder for some pretty funny jokes.

We also get a lot of LDS folks knocking on our "no soliciting" sign, since South Denver has a large LDS population. When that happens, I point to the sign, and say "no, thank you." If they're obtuse enough to try and tell me that "they're not selling anything," then I let loose on them, which is fun for me, but not so great if you're them.

Note, however, that I don't hate evangelicals, I hate evangelism. The behavior, and the mindset that encourages it, is what offends me. There's also a huge distinction between unsolicited evangelism, and sharing your faith when asked.

The bottom line is that for me, religion and spirituality are a private matter. It's none of your damn business what I believe, and I don't need you to save me from myself.

Phelps versus Huckabee = Everybody Wins!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008
I'm not sure how I missed this, but the Bad Astronomer reported on February 8th that Freeze-Dried Whack-a-Loon Fred Phelps decided to take a break from picketing the funerals of fallen service members in order to picket Freeze-Dried Whack-a-Loon Mike Huckabee in Topeka, Kansas.

There's just so much material here, it's like shooting fish in a barrel.

Nah...too easy.

Professional Certifications - Meh

In my industry, professional certifications are almost required if you want to be competitive. If you browse any certified testing provider's website, you'll find literally hundreds of exams for everything under the sun. Seems like every technology vendor in the world has certification programs now, and each one requires one (usually more) proctored exams in order to "earn" the certification. My certification program uses Vue, and man, do they have an awesome business plan. All they do is administer the computer-based tests under controlled conditions. They don't have to write any of the material - all they do is give the computer-based test as given to them by the vendor, then provide the results to the organization who has controlling authority over the certification. Did I mention the exams are $125.00 each? Yeah...quite the racket.

I blame Cisco and Microsoft. Evil bastards.

So my organization requires System Engineers in my pay grade have a certain level of certification as a condition of employment. This is really not that big of a deal, in my opinion. The lower level certifications are ridiculously easy, and anyone who claims to be an SE in telecommunications should be able to pass the exam cold. Because, really, if you don't know what an OSI model is or how many channels are in a T-1, then you really have no business attempting to design communication solutions. Just sayin'.

The more advanced certifications are somewhat harder. Most of the material is information I use in my daily job, but there are certain things that I do have to study simply due to a lack of daily exposure, such as Command Line Interface (CLI) syntax. I usually cram for a few days, pass the exam, then do an immediate brain dump.

This year all of my professional certifications expire. I'm not sure how I managed that, but here I am. I have to take and pass two advanced level exams in order to maintain my current level of certification, and two more if I want to "double down" and have two expert level credentials. I've taken two exams so far (one from each subset), and passed them both. I have one more due in May. I'm not too concerned about that one, as the material covered in that exam is very close to the work I do every day.

The last one, however, may take a bit more effort. It's on a product set I'm not as familiar with, and have very little interest in. That makes the force-feeding of CLI, capacity tables, traffic engineering, storage requirements and all the other testable knowledge a lot less pleasant.

However, I like being employed, and if there are layoffs in my team's future, I want to make sure I'm not on the list. Being employed is good for my stress level since I enjoy being able to afford food, shelter and transportation. So I'll put my nose to the grindstone and do the work, just to prove what a fabulous employee I am.

The thing about it, though, is that I really don't think these professional certifications are very indicative of how competent a person is in terms of their ability to execute and their attention to detail. Anyone can pass an exam if they study the right material. It doesn't make you a better engineer, or a more dedicated employee. It just means you took the test and passed.

I don't know if there's better way to set measures and hold people accountable. Since I test reasonably well, I suppose I shouldn't bitch about it.

But you know I will anyway.

Well Behaved Women Rarely Make History, Volume I

Monday, February 11, 2008

This is Sakena Yacoobi. She's an Afghan-born educator.

Born in Herat, Afghanistan, Sakena came to the United States in the 1970s, earning a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from the University of the Pacific and a master’s degree in public health from Loma Linda University. Before returning in 1990 to work with her people, Sakena was a professor at D’Etre University and a health consultant.

While she has plenty of awards for her work with the Hope International and the Afghan Institute of Learning, Michigan based non-profits providing educational and health-related support to regions involved in poverty or external strife, she's on my list of People I Admire because of the work she did in the 1990's in her native Afghanistan.

During the rule of the Taliban, Sakena broke the law to provide educational opportunities to girls. Since it was illegal to educate girls, Sakena and her cohorts conducted school in the basements of volunteers, cramming as many as 80 girls in a small room, there only to take advantage of an opportunity to learn. She risked her life in this endeavor, because there was no doubt what the consequence would of been had she been caught.

So here's to Sakena Yacoobi, who chose to be ill-behaved and courageous, risking her life so that girls might learn to read.

Chick Stuff - Bangs or No Bangs?

Sunday, February 10, 2008
Today I'm going to discuss a chick-centric topic, because I'm, you know, a chick. For you men, feel free to enjoy this picture on your way to the manly wood-working shop, or whereever your testosterone-laden haven is.

So what's the deal with bangs? Are they "in" or "out?"

The reason I ask is because after having bangs for about 100 years, I recently grew them out and am now bangless. (Guys, if you're still reading, then get your mind out of the gutter. Jeez.)

I'm not sure if I like it or not. At first I didn't like it because I was in the yucky in-between stage and ended up looking like Cindy-Lou Who most of the time. But they're longer now, and not in my face all the time, and I'm still not sure if I have the kind of face that should be without bangs. You decide:


So what's the verdict? Bangs? Or no Bangs?

Nickel Creek - A Lighthouse's Tale

Saturday, February 9, 2008

This is my favorite Nickel Creek song. Chris Thile's voice is sweet, and there's something about the sound of the mandolin that really touches me.

Plus, how could you not love a song that's sung in the first person by a Lighthouse?

Getting Screwed By the Oral Surgeon

Friday, February 8, 2008

My maxillofacial surgeon gave me a copy of my post-surgery X-Ray yesterday in my check-up. I think it's so cool. My Smart Boy thinks I'm more than a little odd for wanting to post it here, but I thought I'd continue in the TMI vein started by the photo of my Smartin' Man.

So this is what a $3K screw job looks like. *

*Disclaimer: I don't think I was overcharged. It was just too funny a joke to pass up.

Who Cares? Magazine, Volume 2, Issue 6


William Shatner experienced complications during his hip replacement surgery! Will he follow through in his commitment to "take better care of himself?" Who Cares!

Hey Berkeley City Council - You Suck!

Thursday, February 7, 2008
Because I apparently live under a rock, I was unaware until this morning that the Berkeley, California City Council voted to tell the Marines their downtown recruiting station is not welcome and "if recruiters choose to stay, they do so as uninvited and unwelcome guests." The measure passed last week by a vote of 8-1.

Excuse me??

What the hell is the matter with these people? I knew Berkeley was a hotbed of liberal support, but having the City Council pass a resolution that a Marine Recruiting Station is "not welcome?"

Not surprisingly, there has been a huge uproar all over the country, leading officials to make the attempt to save face on this issue. They're wiggling all over the place, trying to make the distinction between members of the Armed Forces and the institution of the Armed Forces. You can hear their frantic bleating from here, insisting that the measure was intended to depict their opposition to the war in Iraq, but really, they support members of the Armed Forces!

Yeah, right.

Guess what, Berkeley City Council? You suck. I'm a liberal and I think you're a bunch of insensitive, ungrateful, ignorant fucktards with no concept of what it takes to serve something greater than yourselves. There are plenty of ways to express your opposition of an Administration's policies that don't insult and demean the men and women who put their lives on the line so you can act like a horse's ass. Apparently you missed those in your attempt to prove to everyone how very politically aware you are.

You can kiss my Navy veteran, liberal, politically aware ass.

Disasters in Dog-Walking


This attractive bit of bruising belongs to my Smart Man. When he was walking the dog on Saturday, he slipped on the ice and caught himself on his right arm, hyper-extending the elbow and apparently spraining it. The bruise has now spread almost to his wrist and shoulder and is turning the most appalling shade of black. The picture really does not do it justice.

He says it's not too sore, but he's decided not to walk on the south side of the street anymore in the winter, seeing as how the sun never shines on it and all. Bless his heart, while he definitely has my sympathy, I'm still a bit unclear why he was walking over there in the first place. Neither of us ever walks on that side of the street, for this reason.

I think if he can forgive my chronic Mad Cow, then I can help him out while he heals up from the consequence of this little brain vacation. Poor Smart Man.

Full of Caucusy Goodness

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

I'm full of caucusy goodness from the Douglas County Democratic Caucus last night, where a good time was had by all. I stood up for Barack Obama, as planned, and it appears that he took Colorado at 67%, with Hillary taking 32%, and 1% uncommitted. That was about the split in my precinct, as well. I also signed up to an election judge for the November elections. Janiece, public servant - that's me.

While there, I met a woman named Val, pictured above smiling at the camera. She was an enthusiastic Obama supporter, and was well-versed and articulate regarding Obama's positions, strengths and weaknesses. She was voted as one of our precinct's delegates, and will be representing us in March at the County Caucus. Go, Val!

Val's enthusiasm, and that of her daughter Niki, sitting to Val's husband's left, was somewhat contagious. She thought the entire event was exciting, and was clearly supporting Obama out of a sincere belief in his abilities. Niki was very disappointed that she missed the registration deadline to participate in the caucus due to a recent move from out of state. It made my typical cynicism and recent disillusion with the democratic process feel uncomfortable to me. While I'm still not entirely convinced that Obama will be able to affect permanent change in Washington, I'm a bit more hopeful than I was. So thanks to Val and Niki for the dose of optimism.

I'm also delighted to report that the Dems were as organized as possible given the high turnout, and that the participants were courteous and gracious. No vitriolic name-calling, no "let's whomp them-thar Republicans!", no bible-thumping whack-jobs. Go Dems!

And then there's the Republican caucus (cue ominous music).

Romney won Colorado with 59%, McCain got 19%, and Huckabee got 13%. I'm not surprised at this result, because Colorado is a pretty red state, and we have a large evangelical and LDS population. And no, I'm not implying that Mormans would vote for Romney simply because he's also Morman - it simply removes the concern from their decision making.

My Smart Man went to the Republican caucus, and his report was disturbing, to say the least. In our precinct, the Fundies were out in force, beating the drum for all the favorite Fundy issues...say it with me, kids...The Sanctity of Life, Gay Marriage, and Creationism in Schools! Unbelievably, they actually voted that these issues needed to be included in the Douglas County Republican platform. The vote was overwhelmingly "yay" on all three, with my Smart Man and one other outlier being the only dissenting vote.

Scary, scary.

These people actually believe that abortion, gay marriage and rescinding seperation of Church and State are the most important things for their party to address. Not health care. Not the war. Not the economy. Un-fucking-believable.

I really, really hope that these individuals are not indicative of Douglas County Republicans in general, but are the vocal outliers. If that's the case, then there might be some hope that the moderate Republicans who are currently apathetic might actually take their party back from the Freeze-Dried Whack-a-Loons. You hear that, Moderate Republicans? The whack-jobs have hijacked your party with their activism, and are setting the national agenda based on the idea that rescinding the seperation of Church and State is a really fabulous idea. Who needs that pesky 1st Amendment? Not them!

These people scare me down to my toes.

So the political season continues. My next franchise-related chore is to research the primary candidates for the soon-to-be open seat in the House of Representatives for my district. As previously noted, that Asshat Tom Tancredo will not be seeking reelection, and we need to find a decent, qualified candidate to take that seat.

Fun, fun.

Super Duper Tuesday

Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Well, today's Super Duper Tuesday. For the first time, Colorado will be participating, and they expect a record turnout.

I've never been to a caucus, but I'll be trudging through the latest snowstorm to my Smart Boy's high school this evening in order to exercise my franchise. It's supposed to last two hours. Additional information about the Colorado Caucus can be found here.

This year I'm going to volunteer to be an election judge for the November Election Day, which is on the agenda for tonight's caucus. However, I'm a bit concerned that once the local democrats get my contact information, I'll never be rid of them. I'm really not interested in being stalked by the Douglas County Democrats for the next 100 years because I'm interested in helping out for this election. Sort of like when my charities stalk me. We'll see if I regret it or not.

As I mentioned earlier, I'll be standing up for Barack Obama. Based on current information, I think he has best chance of a successful presidency of the current Democratic candidates. And by "successful," I mean the country's in a better place at the end of his term than at the beginning, based on criteria the president has control over. Secret message to George W. Bush: Your presidency was not successful. Duh.

I wish Bill Richardson was still running. I'd be voting for him, since he was so clearly the most qualified candidate in either field. But he had to drop out. Not sexy enough, I suspect. I don't see where having a president who's too sexy for his shirt is a legitimate job requirement, but hey, what do I know?

Being a Competent Human

Monday, February 4, 2008
Here is today's quote from The Notebooks of Lazarus Long: "A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects."

As I was changing the quote today, I was mentally going over the tasks on the list to determine if I was a competent human by Heinlein's standards. Here's what I can do:
  • Change a diaper
  • Conn a ship
  • Write a sonnet
  • Balance accounts
  • Comfort the dying
  • Take orders
  • Give orders
  • Cooperate
  • Act alone
  • Analyze a new problem
  • Pitch manure
  • Cook a tasty meal
  • Fight efficiently

One of these I used to be able to do, but have forgotten due to lack of practice (solve equations). A couple of these have never come up (i.e., "die gallantly"), but I hope that if the opportunity arises, I won't disappoint myself.

My score is 62%, which on a typical scale is a "D." So I pass as a competent human being, but just barely.

Superbowl Commercials

Sunday, February 3, 2008
Well, the Superbowl is over, and although I'm glad the Giants won (gotta love the underdog), we really need to get to the important part: The Commercials.

I have my own favorites, but want to find out what the Hot Chicks and Smart Men think. Give your opinion!


To Be in Compliance

According to Nathan, I am not in compliance with the required pet-posting regulations in the Blogosphere. As a result, I'm required to post two pictures of dogs in lieu of one cat.


Be careful what you wish for.




The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

The Good is that Gamma Acosta, a local artist in Longmont, Colorado, is using his skills with spray paint to depict the presidential candidates on the side of his uncle's vacant commercial building in order to build awareness of the campaign. He said he knew too many people who didn't vote, and he wanted people to take an interest in the election because it was important.



The Bad is that a police employee in Hamilton, NJ has been sneaking into a church to surf porn on a nun's computer. He'd been doing it for weeks before he was caught. Real classy, dude. You're a grown man - you can't surf porn at home like the rest of the losers?


The Ugly is this tattoo. Damn. And ew. I wonder what the rest of the family got?


Have a nice Sunday!

The Princess Bride Quiz

Saturday, February 2, 2008
Directed by Random Michelle, I have taken the "What Princess Bride Character Are You?" Quiz. Turns out I'm Fezzik. How very odd.

You can find the quiz here.


Fezzik



"You've been mostly dead all day."

Public Officials Behaving Badly...and Then Not

Here in Colorado, our House Assistant Majority Leader, Michael Garcia, resigned from public office on Friday amid allegations that he exposed himself and made lewd comments to a female lobbyist. He claims the January 7th incident was "consensual" in a statement released Friday afternoon.

Nothing new there, huh? A public official behaves badly. Whatever. Zzzz...

Here's the odd part.

While Mr. Garcia claims the encounter was consensual, he has publically recognized that having the encounter at all was inappropriate, given that he was a state legislator and the other party was a lobbyist. In a statement, he said "The interests of the state are greater than my own."

But wait, there's more.

He has also refused to identify the lobbyist by name, and so has the office of House Speaker Andrew Romanoff, in order to protect her privacy. Mr. Garcia has made a statement through his attorney that "He respects her privacy. He doesn't believe it's fair to air their private issues in public."

Huh?

Since when do public officials admit their wrongdoing promptly and take immediate steps to protect the public institution they represent from their (now) tarnished reputation? That's not the New American Way.

But it should be. I don't know what happened between Mr. Garcia and the anonymous lobbyist, and based on current information, it's unlikely I'll ever know. I'm okay with that, because Mr. Garcia's decision to resign immediately has made it a private matter. As it should be.

Are you listening Larry Craig, poster boy for not-taking-responsibility-for-your-actions? You really can get caught doing something untoward and retain some measure of your dignity. What a novel concept.

Spanish for your Nanny

Now that we've spent two days discussing bone grafts, anaesthesia, pain meds and swamp mouth, here's a little something to lighten the mood.

I found this snarkily hilarious. Enjoy!

Hot Chicks Dig Darvocet

Friday, February 1, 2008
Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
Darvocet is white
And makes you feel all Wheeee!

Just kidding.

My procedure went very well yesterday. Dr. Hunter and his staff were gracious and efficient, and they zipped me in and out in less than an hour and a half. Thanks to everyone who sent their sympathy and well-wishes, and Nathan? Make your appointment. It's not that bad.

I have a low tolerance for oral narcotics, so Dr. Hunter chose to give me an IV anaesthesia. I don't know what he used, but man, was it effective. One minute I was telling Dr. Hunter what a pain in the ass buying Sudafed is, and the next thing I know, he's tapping a section of my jawbone up into my sinus for something called a sinus lift. When I came to again, he was pretty much done, so I got an X-Ray to ensure everything was where it was supposed to be, and my Smart Man took me home.

The pain has been extremely manageable, and I only needed to take two Darvocet yesterday. As I mentioned, I typically don't do well with oral narcotics, so I was alternating half a Darvocet with ibuprofen, and that seemed to work just fine. The implant is in the upper left section of my mouth, so I have a really attractive bruise on the corner of my mouth from the stress of having Dr. Hunter messing with the back of my mouth, but it doesn't hurt at all.

Dr. Hunter also put me on Sudafed. Since he was modifying the sinus cavity, he anticipated my sinuses filling up, and he wants it drained as soon as possible. I'm also on oral antibiotics and an antibiotic mouth rinse.

The only negative thing about this experience so far was the fact that I slept like shit last night. I don't know if it was the combination of the Darvocet and the Sudafed, but I haven't had such a rough night in many, many years. I switched to OTC pain medication this morning, and I'm considering skipping the second dose of Sudafed tonight so I can sleep.

But the best part is that I was able to (carefully) brush my teeth this morning. Thank God. I got up this morning and my mouth felt like a swamp. Ew.

Who Cares? Magazine, Volume 2, Issue 5


Britney has been admitted to the hospital for psychiatric evaluation! Is this development the result of a Meth Binge? Will she be committed? Who Cares!