Friday, February 27, 2009

Rhetorical Question

How does it smell when your vinegar goes bad? :)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Of all the interesting words in the English language, I get a coordinating conjunction....yet I get unexpected results.

Here's the meme, lifted from Vikki:

Grab the nearest book - no matter what it is. Textbook, novel, pop-up book, building code study guide, whatever.

Turn to page 25.
Read the 10th word on that page, or the following if that one is blank.
Type that word into Google Image search.
Post the third image.

Link back to this post.
Feel free to self-tag.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Surprise! John McCain Says That Obama's Had a Bad Beginning

Interviewed by CNN's John King, John McCain says:

“It was a bad beginning,” McCain said Sunday of the legislative process that resulted in the $787 billion stimulus bill recently passed by Congress. “It was a bad beginning because it wasn’t what we promised the American people, what President Obama promised the American people – that we would sit down together.”

While McCain said he appreciated the fact that Obama came to Capitol Hill to speak with House Republicans about the stimulus bill. But, “that’s not how you negotiate a result.” Instead, “you sit down in a room with competing proposals” and “almost all of our proposals went down on a party-line vote”

“I hope the next time we will sit down together and conduct truly bipartisan negotiations. This was not a bipartisan bill.”
This is not a sarcastic post. The surprise is not that John McCain said this; that's no surprise at all. The surprise is that the comments that follow this article are overwhelmingly critical of McCain's comments.

At almost all "news" sources (and this includes CNN), on almost any topic, the comments are truly cringe-worthy. I sometimes read the first few, but any more than that are detrimental to my mental health. And they're frequently not even on topic. For instance, even the most innocuous article that mentions the name "Obama" tends to inspire a lot of non-sequitur comments, often along the lines of liberal media bias, stolen election--ACORN!, not a citizen, fat Michelle (fat Michelle?).

This time around, while there are a few of those kind of comments, the rest are overwhelmingly on point, and many are well-argued. And almost all boil down to "get-over-it-McCain."

Jamie from Philly's comment is my favorite:

In the past few decades, history has shown us that Republicans will do whatever they can to disrupt a Democratic president, often at the expense of the American people. This is not generally true of Democrats when a Republican is in charge. Other than the few moderates who actually care about their constituents, Republicans are all about forcing a win for their team, rather than safeguarding the rights of the American people.
It's nice to see a comments thread that doesn't devolve into ugliness and silliness but instead offers reasoned argument. More of this, please.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

But Is It Big Enough?

I will very soon buy an external hard drive on which to store my photos, videos, and music. My new computer is rather full, which is quite silly. My old computer has a lot in it too.

Time to transfer the fun stuff elsewhere.

I was looking on at the options. Western Digital sells a 1TB drive for $118.88. Since this is the first time I'd heard that term, and even though I assumed it was one step up from a GB, I wanted to know what it is.

It is, it turns out, a terabyte. And 10 of them will hold the print collection of the Library of Congress.

That's nice. But will it hold all my stuff?

Friday, February 13, 2009

Captivated Kitty

A few weeks ago, I joined the 21st century and bought an LCD TV -- a modest one, a 32" Samsung, because the woman and the penny pincher in me wanted to keep it hidden in the armoire I invested in last year. This plan required a TV on the smaller side, which worked out, because I have a small living room and because after rebate it cost only (only?) $500, 18 months no interest. Oh yeah.

That purchase, however, led to a $250 blu-ray player, whereupon my savings were promptly wiped out.

Anyway, now that I have the new Samsung, Baby, my cat, is suddenly interested in TV for the first time. The first time I noticed his fascination, two days ago, I was watching Planet Earth on blu-ray and I thought it was the moving animals that caught his interest. This may have been so.

However, this morning he spent a good five minutes intently watching Angelo Surmelis redecorate a living room on HGTV. (Still might have been the moving animals that caught his interest!)

Anyway, has anyone else noticed a cat (or other pet) who had no use for old-school TV taking an interest in high-definition?

Monday, February 09, 2009

In Which a Famous Actor Desires to Save a Buck, Just Like the Rest of Us

If you're a Lost fan and you don't follow Jorge Garcia's blog, why?

Even if you're not a Lost fan, it's a hoot.

Jorge goes to the grocery store.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Job Security

For what it's I ponder the horrific state of our economy, it occurs to me that among the few people with (for the most part) secure jobs (at least for a set period of time) are the President and Congress.

The people whose job it is to see that our own jobs stop going under.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Famous: For the Fourth Annual Bloggers Silent Poetry Reading

Prompted by Bee, I herewith offer the following poem in honor of the Fourth Annual Bloggers Silent Poetry Reading:

--Naomi Shihab Nye

The river is famous to the fish.

The loud voice is famous to silence,
which knew it would inherit the earth
before anybody said so.

The cat sleeping on the fence is famous to the birds
watching him from the birdhouse.

The tear is famous, briefly, to the cheek.

The idea you carry close to your bosom
is famous to your bosom.

The boot is famous to the earth,
more famous than the dress shoe,
which is famous only to floors.

The bent photograph is famous to the one who carries it
and not at all famous to the one who is pictured.

I want to be famous to shuffling men
who smile while crossing streets,
sticky children in grocery lines,
famous as the one who smiled back.

I want to be famous in the way a pulley is famous,
or a buttonhole, not because it did anything spectacular,
but because it never forgot what it could do.

I've posted the poem before, but asked to single out a poem (and despite the fact that Carl Sandburg is the official poet of this blog), I realize that "Famous" is the one I come back to again and again. It's probably as close to a credo as I have.

Four X Four: A Warm Memory in the Cold of Winter

Brave Sir Robin issued a general tag order on this meme, and I am obliging.

Here are the rules:

Go to the file that holds your pictures, go to the fourth folder and pick the fourth picture and display and write about it.
I was a little concerned at first. I don't post identifiable photos of myself or the people in my life, and the odds were excellent that the prescribed photo would be of people. It wasn't, at least not of people we know:

(Photo not taken by me, although I am sometimes guilty of less-than-perfect shots.)

The occasion was a very happy day last summer. Daughter, her children, and I were in northeastern Maryland visiting the family, something I've not been able to do much of over the past, oh, 25 years. So, yes, happy time. I told everyone that I'd like to go to Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania, and who's with me? Frankly, I didn't expect much reaction, but in the end, in addition to Daughter and her two tikes, my mother, two sisters, and two nieces made the trip. (This, folks, is only about a fifth of the sibling and niece/nephew inventory.)

Longwood Gardens is the most beautiful place I've ever been that's crafted by man. If there's a lovelier place, I'd like to see it. The "4th folder, 4th photo" picture doesn't really offer that beauty, though. This was part of a special exhibit of treehouses. Here are examples of some of the beauty at Longwood:

Several groups of Amish folk were also enjoying the gardens that day. One of my neighbors here in Florida is, interestingly, from the same general area that I grew up in. He and his wife, when traveling to Maryland, have also gone to Pennsylvania and visited the Amish shops and restaurants. I need to put this on my to-do list.

As stunning as the grounds were, it was the conservatory that I couldn't leave. My family finally made me go. Some of the reasons why I wanted to just move in, permanently: