Monday, January 31, 2005

Music As Propaganda

Music As Propaganda In World War I

As you can see, I was browsing far afield this morning. Not all of the images are present on this site, but continue down the page and you will see more of them. The text is fascinating as well. I happen to have a small collection of old sheet music and now I will be looking at it to see if it has any special value. I was planning on using most of it in collages, but I will check out this site before cutting any of it.

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Morning sky at 7

Early morning ravings

On Friday I heard an interesting comment from my granddaughter when I told her that, “No, I didn’t watch the Early Show with Jon Stewart because I didn’t care for profanity.” I was told that was “nothing” and that I could hear the same thing or worse in high school or even middle school. So what’s the matter with our schools? Why is it allowed? I don’t understand, nor will I ever understand, why anyone would use profanity. It’s common, it’s vulgar and a sign of stupidity. Yes, I said stupidity, and that is not the same as a lack of intelligence. Even intelligent people can be stupid. Profanity…It’s the language that sheep use.

There I go again, maligning sheep. I need to make myself clear on this; I love the four legged variety and have little use for the two legged sheep.

Now that I have said all of this, I also know that I will be the one that is considered “odd”. Oh well, better odd than one of the flock.

Saturday, January 29, 2005

A different look at politics

I was doing some of my usual browsing this afternoon, (the twins are taking a nap!) and I ran across this statement that said a lot of the things I wish I had said.

Chris Emerson's piece in the Union-Leader (Manchester New Hampshire…November 15, 2004)

The forgotten truth is that not all Christian evangelicals are conservatives or Bush supporters. Not all belong to churches with contemporary worship styles. Not all are uneducated dupes in flyover country, as many coastal liberals imagine.A significant minority of evangelicals supported Kerry. Many on both religious extremes are highly educated and sophisticated. Many are social liberals. Some evangelicals are radicals with a passion for the Gospel which impels them to make it real through aggressive community activism.Evangelicals are a diverse lot, spanning the spectrum, and some of us are called progressive evangelicals. We are evangelical because our spiritual and moral grounding is firm in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, but our eager application of that glorious Word to modern life is more flexible and responsive than our conservative cousins. We are progressive because we believe in an interactive, open engagement with a changing world.


And in that same vein, my granddaughter suggested that I might be interested this book (below) and from what I have read in the reviews...it sounds interesting. To be truthful, the title drew me right in. Now I have to visit Amazon.com once more. Check it out yourself...

God's Politics : Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It by Jim Wallis


Friday, January 28, 2005

This Day In History

The Shuttle Explodes

I hope the link to this page works for you...Do you remember this day? I will never forget it. I was working in Reno at the time. I was sitting in the supt's office on the construction site for the new Sierra Pacific Power Co. office building. I had just stopped by to check some plans with the architect and the TV was on, so I sat down to watch the liftoff. What a terrible tragedy!

Unhappy Campers

Public Opinion Watch - January 26, 2005 - Center for American Progress

Where were all of these people in November?

Promises

The New York Times > Opinion > Editorial: America's Promises

Is it any wonder that, as a nation, we're not exactly "believable"?

WASHINGTON - President Bush asked Congress yesterday for another $80 billion to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and boost total spending for the conflicts to more than $300 billion - nearly half the cost of the Vietnam War.
Bush's request came as the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office projected that the government would run yearly deficits of $855 billion over the next decade even without figuring in the costs of the wars and Bush's plan to reform Social Security.


What do you call it when you spend and promise more than you make? The neocons would like you to believe that only liberals would do something so foolish...

Thursday, January 27, 2005

A stray thought

Why are they called "political parties" when there is nothing to celebrate?


And...I just found out that not all of my links to the New York Times or the Economist stories are able to get you to them. Sorry. I will have to think of a better way...

Eminently Qualified?

I won't even mention the lies...

"Republicans defended Ms. Rice as eminently qualified to be the public face of American diplomacy. "She's knowledgeable, she's smart, she's honorable," said Senator Richard G. Lugar, the Indiana Republican who is the chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee."

During the Reagan years, Ms. Rice was the Administrations leading Soviet expert...the same expert that was so surprised by the implosion of the Soviet Union...she never saw it coming.

Ever since that event, I have always had this thought in the back of my mind...We couldn't have been that dumb as to not see that the Soviets were in trouble. Perhaps the Pentagon was withholding the information on purpose? So that they could continue to spend and spend some more? But that sounds like a conspiracy and we know that's illegal.

America's pension holes

Economist.com | Articles by Subject | America's pension holes

A sorry record for those who favor the private sector in the Social Security wars...Read what Illinois, California and other states have tried and then imagine it on a national scale

Pension Plans

Economist.com | Economics focus

Funny, how everything works fine in the model of privatization...until you introduce "real people" and "real data" into that model. And since this report was written, Chile's program has fallen on hard times as well, with those covered by the private plan getting about a third of what was promised...

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Deficit Will Hit Record $427B

Yahoo! News - White House: Deficit Will Hit Record $427B

First, you have to believe that it will only be $427 billion!

What is the sum you get when you divide 427 billion by the current number for the population in the USA? Just wondering if it will fit in my retirement budget. Ah, no problem! My kids can pay it!
Here they are...lovely but deadly!

When life hands you lemons...

...You make lemonade, right? I made marmalade.

Yesterday, I decided to use the lemons that I had picked and preserve them with this great marmalade recipe I had found. Now making marmalade, jelly or jam is quite a complicated process, using precise amounts of fruit, sugar and pectin, plus perfect timing. A hard boil for 1 minute, no more and no less! According to the recipe, I was to use 6 lemons, 5 cups of sugar and 1 pouch of liquid pectin.

I did all that was required, boiling the jars and lids for 3 pints. The recipe stated that I would end up with 2 pints for all of my efforts, but I wanted to be safe and prepared 3 jars. The stove top was covered with large vessels for boiling water and the steam was abundant while I scraped the lemon peels free of that white membrane and cut them into long slivers. Cook, stir and boil. Finally the moment of truth came and I began to pour the marmalade into the jars. And I poured and I poured. It seems that my lemons are super lemons, oversized and filled with juice. I made 3 ½ pints. No one mentioned that the size of the lemons would make a difference! So now I have 3 lovely jars of very sour and not quite jelled marmalade. Maybe I can use it for a marinade for Lemon Chicken?

Honey, I lost the car!

BBC NEWS | Health | Bad driving 'linked to hormones'

Oh, oh...more ammunition for the war between the sexes. I haven't checked the length of my wife's ring finger, but I imagine that it is about the length of her thumb. No, this is not dangerous territory for me...she would agree that she has no spatial skills.

Just imagine us on a trip...she can't read the map and I won't ask for directions.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

What Do We Do Now?

What We Do Now

I was pointed to this website and though I found some of the goals worthwhile, too much of it is the same old same old...

I quit the Democratic Party last year because I felt they had lost touch with their base and after reading this, I see that they still haven't found a way to communicate with the people who are at the heart of their party. Or, at the very least, they haven't found a way to communicate with me.

And speaking of that communication thing...all during the months leading up to the election, I received tons of Democratic election literature, me, the former Democrat. My wife, who remains a Democrat, never received a piece of election mail. Go figure!

Innocence Lost

I don’t know about you, but one of the things that I have always loved about this country of ours was the fact that you were always presumed innocent until proven guilty. That is just basically fair. It’s elementary. It’s American. What is there to complain about in that premise? Yet that seems to be the first rule of law that is violated.

Read the newspaper and watch the news on television and you will see that the rule is violated time after time.

And now we have the Supreme Court ruling that drug sniffing dogs (Not 100% reliable) can be used by the police at routine traffic stops. Routine? Can you really trust all of the police to do the right thing all of the time? Of course not, and every time you lose a little bit of your freedom, you encourage government to take just a little bit more of it the next time.

Chain of Command

Transcript - Chain of Command

I just finished the book and found it to be most informative...well worth the time to investigate it yourself. Don't just read it...check it out.

Monday, January 24, 2005

Small Names, Big Checks

Small Names, Big Checks
Your government for rent...the more things change the more they remain the same. I thought it was the Clinton Presidency that was for sale.

Foggy days remembered

The fog has returned. Darn! And speaking of fog…and airplanes, which I was. I used to travel via United Airlines quite frequently and I remember one foggy morning at Sacramento International, when I sat in my assigned seat at 6:30, fully expecting to go to Chicago. The doors closed, the plane began to push away and the attendants began their usual routines. But we stopped about 20 feet away from the ramp and there we sat…and sat some more. We sat for a total of 5 ½ hours. We looked out of the windows at the people in the terminal and they looked back at us…for 5 ½ hours.

This memory was brought back to me by the news that O’Hare Airport (Chicago) was affected by the weekend storms in the east and they had to cancel 1,300 flights. In Chicago, I think that 1,300 flights is about an hours worth. What an airport! It’s no place for an INFP personality type and I dreaded being sent there. Although the underground passageway between terminals B and C is a “must see” attraction. I would sometimes go through it 3 or 4 times if I had enough time between flights. Hey, it made me smile…and that is rare in an airport! Here is a link, http://www.flychicago.com/ohare/about/about_gallery1.shtm

'Never Retire'

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: 'Never Retire'
I was never much of a Safire fan...but I did enjoy this article. Naturally!

Socialogy and Flight

Another Monday and I don’t have to travel to the airport. I think of that fact every now and then, just to put a smile on my face. You have to understand that I didn’t have a fear of flying or dread of a terrorist attack. It was the terrible dull and boring routine of travel that I came to dislike so much. Go stand in line, wait. Boarding pass and photo ID please. Go here. Go there. And then another line, wait some more and then another…Where’s the luggage? Please wait. I knew the tricks needed to circumvent most, but not all of the lines. I had Frequent Flier cards with all of the airlines and I had Preferred status at Avis. After a while “Travel” became a job of its own and my work day began as soon as the blue shuttle van pulled up in front of the house; where I had been waiting of course.

Upon further consideration, I think the reason for my distaste for the whole flying experience was the fact that I lost my individuality for the duration of the trip. I was forced into being one of the herd. Mass transit systems of any kind do not tolerate non conformists well. And non conformists have the same feelings in regard to the system.

Now there is a word (non conformist) that I haven’t seen used recently. It was used quite frequently in the 60’s to describe those who wouldn’t go along and get along. Those who lived in the herd used the word pejoratively and those who were non conformists, reveled in it. Much the same thing is happening today with the word “liberal”. Today’s herd dwellers always try to paint a picture of evil when using that word. I guess they do that to reassure themselves that somehow, they have made all of the right choices and deserve to belong to the herd. For me, being called a non conformist liberal would be high praise indeed.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

The wasteland revisited

I happened across this article (excerpt below) and was fascinated by the statistics that he presented. I hope you have access to the complete article. If I can find it on-line, I will publish a link to it. Why do I find it so fascinating? Because I am from that generation that grew up (through the age of 10) without a television in our house. I believe that because it is so pervasive, we tend to minimize the dangers presented by commercial television. Whoever pays the bills has the right to present their own agenda...

RENOWNED AUTHOR NORMAN MAILER CALLS FOR END TO COMMERCIAL TV; ENCOURAGES KIDS TO READ
New York, December 2—“I believe that television supported (and interrupted) by commercials has got to go,” PARADE Contributing Editor Norman Mailer writes in an original article on for this Sunday’s issue of PARADE magazine.
Mailer discusses what he would do to change America for the better and talks largely about the decline in reading among youths over the past few decades. From 1982 to 2002, there was a 25 percent decline in books read annually by teenagers and young adults. “If the desire to read diminishes, so does one’s ability to read,” Mailer writes. He says that commercial television is the culprit.
With the advent of television, it was hoped that the attention children gave to TV would improve their interest in reading. Mailer suggests that might have been the case if television consisted of uninterrupted narratives. But the nature of concentration has been altered by television commercials. “Even as adults, we have to learn to contain our annoyance when our thoughts are broken into,” Mailer says. “For a child, interruption to one’s concentration can prove as painful as a verbal rebuke, yet this is what we do to our children for hours everyday.”
On the major networks, the amount of time given to commercials increased by 36 percent from 1991 to 2003. During commercials, Mailer suggests that children “sit on the couch in a stupor, they eat and drink, and alarms are sounded through the nation. Our children are becoming obese, “ he says. “The rest of the world is getting into position to do far better than us with future economic conditions.”

More stuff from the heartland

Some In Black Tie; Others, Body Bags :: VAIW :: Veterans Against The Iraq War
I can't remember...was Minnesota a Red state or a Blue one? Not that it makes any difference. People who think differently than the current administration are found everywhere and there are millions of us.

The Truth?

Operation Truth

There are some fascinating stories here

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Does Not Compute

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Contributor: Does Not Compute

Having been involved in many software development projects over the years, I can tell you that the reason for the cost overruns is something very simple, called "scope creep". This occurs when you allow the future users of the software to add their wishes and dreams to the scope of the project. And since most programmers enjoy showing off, they will add the bells and whistles just to prove they can. How do I know this? Because I have been guilty of it as well.

Blah, blah, blah

As I was posting to my blog yesterday I noticed, once again, that there were thousands of blogs out here in the electronic world. (I’m sure it is millions and not thousands.) And that made me think that, perhaps, there wasn’t any good reason for me to have one. I have always disliked being a part of any crowd and it is getting far too crowded; everyone, including me, is shouting and no one is being heard. Yet…where else can you have a voice? Letters to the editor of your local newspaper are restricted by word counts and who reads the newspaper anymore? No, I'm not asking for your opinion...I'm just exercising my voice again.

Friday, January 21, 2005

The same old...same old

Interesting...I see where all of the right wing columnists are filling their columns with cries of "sour grapes!" as they vilify anyone who doesn't agree with their praise of Bush II. Would they have written such drivel 8 years ago? Of course not, they were RIGHT at the time. This time, the opposition is WRONG.

Once again I have to examine all of the reasons for my dislike of Bush and it’s something I do frequently, as I don’t want to be caught up in some unnecessary fury because I didn’t have my facts straight. But, some of the reasons for my dislike of the man are simply emotional and based on my perception of what kind of person he is. And the first reason for my disdain of the man is the fact that he is following in his father’s footsteps. Now if his father was a tool and die maker, a carpenter or a physician, I wouldn’t be quite as critical, although I dislike any hint of nepotism and I believe that everyone should make their own way in this world. But his father was a politician and so the only way he could advance in that career was through the influence peddling of his father. He had no skills, he was a failed businessman, despite the Saudi business connections with his father, and the office of governor in Texas is mainly ceremonial, as the lieutenant governor wields all of the political power in that state. The second reason for my dislike of the man is also an emotional one. Prior to the first of the Bush/Republican conventions, Bush and Cheney were discussing a newsman in derogatory (profane) terms and their comments were heard on an open microphone. He never apologized. What kind of man would do that? And the third reason, also emotional, is the fact that he allowed a photographer to shoot pictures of himself and his cabinet while they were supposedly in prayer. That alone tells me just what kind of person he is…and although these reasons of mine seem small and perhaps petty, his actions have since borne out all of my suppositions. "Perception is Reality"

As I said, some of the reasoning for my disdain for Bush is emotional and that is something not easily overcome. Example: I have always believed that those who worked, worked with their hands, had a special nobility that those who only observed or directed the work would never attain. That, of course, is hogwash. Those who work with their hands would much rather be watching the work and getting paid for it. That is our human and sinful nature and although we talk a lot about democracy and a classless society, we are still very much divided into classes and class envy (dare we call it “class hatred”?) exists.

Sunday, January 16, 2005

An earlier thought

I wrote this 4 years ago and found it again this morning...

This is the first entry for the New Year, 2001. Doesn’t that look neat “01/01/01”? I probably should have stayed up for the first second and first minute so that I could write “01/01/01/01/01”.

And what did we do last night? We went to bed at 11, as there wasn’t much reason to stay up any longer than that. It was, quite obviously, an eventful year, but isn’t every year? Presidents and personalities come and go and the world continues on without a pause.

The only thing that is important, really important, is our relationships. The Socratic revelation that “The unexamined life is not worth living.” is true for me. I know that there are those who don’t want to know anymore than necessary. They are quite content with the “Status Quo” and do not seek out any enlightenment. But, I need to know more, more about why I am here and what is my purpose? I know that my creator, my God, Jehovah, made this world that we exist in. Didn’t it happen by chance? I subscribe to the Watchmaker logic for creation. A watch, that complex assortment of wheels and gears, doesn’t exist on its own, it was made. A watchmaker labored to put it all together. It’s (the watch’s or the world’s) existence points inexorably to the watchmaker. You can’t have a watch without a maker. I suppose that’s simplistic for some who consider themselves to be the center of the universe, their own universe. But I see that “one person=one universe” as devaluing, as a cheapening of their lives. My life is worth so much more. So much so, that God gave up Himself and became like me, human, just to give me value. If you are the ruler of your own universe, who loves you? I would hate to depend on myself for validation.

The rites of winter...one more time

If you read history at all, you will have encountered stories of how the rural Americans (Pre Television era) entertained themselves during the long dark days of winter. They looked at seed catalogs of course. And although we may be 50 years or more removed from those times, the attraction is still there.

I spent some time on line yesterday, visiting various seed catalogs, enjoying all of the pictures and the lavish descriptions. All of this has fueled my desires for an early spring, just as it once did for my great grandparents. And now I have my spring garden coming to me via the post office. I guess some things never change.

One of the more difficult items to find was seeds for the “Tigger” melon. I finally found some on the EBay site and so those seeds are coming from someone in Missouri. The tomatoes are coming from Florida and I’m not sure of where all the rest are coming from. But I’m looking forward to their arrival! Spring can’t be far behind.

Look at the post for January 11th and there is a link to Reimer Seeds that will let you see a description and photo of the "Tigger" melon

Friday, January 14, 2005

Cheney Says...

The New York Times > Washington > Overhauling Retirement Is Worth Risk, Cheney Says

The bush fear machine is on a roll and cheney is driving...

"He said that by 2042 the program would reach "fiscal collapse," at which point the government would have no option "other than to suddenly and dramatically reduce benefit payments by over 25 percent, or to impose a massive, economically ruinous tax increase on all American workers.""


These words of wisdom brought to you by the same man who "Knew" there were WMD's in Iraq. The same man who handles all criticism with a gentle reminder that you should "Go **** yourself."

If you think the possibility of the Social Security system crashing is really scary...think about the fact that this man is a heartbeat away from being president. Now that's scary!

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

It's over

Yahoo! News - U.S. Ends Fruitless Iraq Weapons Hunt

How can I not mention this? Hello?! I think someone needs to apologize...

Do yourself a favor and read "Chain of Command" by Seymour Hersh. The deceptions and fumblings of the Bush administration are revealed with documentation...something this administration doesn't understand or use.

The Committee For Good Common Sense

The Committee For Good Common Sense

Now, how could you not like these people? With a name like that, I'm certain they can do no wrong...

Physician...do no harm.

Patient Compliance Growing Concern: 20% of New Prescriptions Go Unfilled

Patient compliance is a growing concern -- 20% of new prescriptions go unfilled, while up to 85% of prescriptions never get refilled.

I wonder...would the price of the drugs have anything at all to do with the non-compliance?

By the way...the report mentioned in the article can be yours to read for only $2,995.00

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Thoughts of Spring

Reimer Seeds Hot Pepper Habanero Red Savina Tomato

I guess the constant rain has led me to this site...and I have been busy shopping for seeds for the spring planting. Now that is fun! You can look at photos of the plants themselves and then read the inspiring descriptions of the produce. Visions of the harvest dance through your head and you find it difficult to stop yourself from ordering just one more seed packet.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Social Security

The New York Times > Opinion > For the Record on Social Security

This article, like so many others, is filled with conflicting numbers and weasel words like"or", "may" and "if". It's obvious that someone is lying, and since we're dealing with politicians here...lying is second nature to them. So where is the truth?

I read George Will's column yesterday and he also noted that no one knew the truth about status of Social Security...so his advise was to "fix it" anyway. Only the conservative mind could come up with a gem like that!
Calatrava...Milwaukee Art Museum

Where Was God?

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: Where Was God?

The Book of Job...There are no easy answers here, still, it's my favorite book in the Bible. Just as Safire notes, when God speaks to Job, that demonstrates His presence in all things...that we are never alone.

Sunday, January 9, 2005

A small work of Gaudi's...I believe this is in Barcelona, where so many of his works are located

Inspired television

It was a great evening for public television viewing…here is a copy of what was on.

8:00 PM ANGLE OF INSPIRATION: Santiago Calatrava's Sundial Bridge

8:27 PM SANTIAGO CALATRAVA: God Does Not Throw Dice Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava designed the Sundial Bridge in Redding, California. This film shows the architect/artist describing and demonstrating the inspiration for his designs. Which is more artistically rendered in this film—Calatrava’s structures themselves or the filmmaker’s visual images of them? In Spanish with English subtitles. (Repeats 1/8, 9:57 pm)

9:17 PM IT STARTED WITH A DREAM "The Milwaukee Art Museum Calatrava Expansion" The first Calatrava designed building in the United States, the expansion of the Milwaukee Art Museum was a daily challenge to build. Learn how architectural, engineering and construction teams, working closely with Museum leadership, came together to transform Calatrava’s watercolor sketches into a building which, in itself, is a work of art. (Repeats 1/8, 10:47 pm)

9:30 PM MOVEMENT, STRUCTURE "The Work of Santiago Calatrava" Based on the book, Movement, Structure and the Work of Santiago Calatrava by Alexander Tzonis and Liane Lefaivre, this film presents soaring visuals of many of Calatrava’s structures. With sparse narration and an inspirational musical score, the film becomes an artistic music video of Calatrava’s innovative architecture.

Yes, it was all about Calatrava and his work. If you ever get a chance to see these shows again, don’t pass it up! I have found it impossible not to admire a cable stayed bridge, no matter who designed it. The form is ultimately graceful. (I have been to see the Sundial Bridge in Redding and found it to be delightful. It’s the right size and it’s in the right place.)

And I was not overly surprised to hear Mr. Calatrava explain that he is a fan of the late Antonio Gaudi. I have admired the works of both of these artists for years now. It’s hard to imagine that Gaudi was born in 1852, as his work is so modern. (You can use Google Images to see examples of his artistry.)

Perhaps I can find a few images and post them here…

Familiar?

Philippine-American War - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

For some odd reason, I ran across the name "Emilio Aguinaldo" the other day and so I decided to Google it and see what it might bring up. After reading it, I had to ask myself; does any of this seem familiar?

Friday, January 7, 2005

Target Zero

The New York Times > Opinion > Editorial: The Election's Last Gasp

Well stated...both sides deserve better than what we get. I simply have no patience for those who insist that it is difficult to produce a paper trail for electronic voting machines. Diebold, the leading manufacturer of those machines and the one with all of the excuses, also makes cash registers. The last time I looked at my paper receipt from Safeway, it told me how many dollars I would have to spend to get my next free latte and how much it was going to take off the pump price at the gasoline station next door. It even included a line..."Thank You, Mr. Dunn" And Diebold doesn't know how to do this simple thing?

When I was working for PCI, the largest interior contractor in the USA, we had a program called "Target Zero" and it was in place to ensure that we had no recordable accidents in the workplace. Guess what...it works! And our insurance rates dropped to reflect that. So why can't we have a "Target Zero" for our votes? Every vote gets counted. Period. No mistakes.

The fact that Washington state counted the votes 4 times and came up with 4 completely different numbers is a crime...

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

A clear day and you can see the snow in the Mendocino National Forest...

Wimps and Barbarians

The Claremont Institute: Wimps and Barbarians

I was busy cleaning up my study this morning and I ran across this writing by Moore. I must have thought it was important at the time, as I had printed it out. It's a couple of years old, but I can guarantee that it will disturb you, please you, anger you, and in all sorts of ways...make you think.

Social Security

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: Stopping the Bum's Rush

Here is more on the so-called crisis. And what I don't understand is; why are there such widely disparate views on this? It's no longer a difference of opinion. Someone is lying. Who is it?

Sunday, January 2, 2005

Dear Editor

There was a good “letter to the editor” in yesterdays Sacramento Bee. I wonder if I can find it on-line? Sure enough, here it is…

'T'is the season for New Year's resolutions. Here's a top 10 list for letters:
1. Unity doesn't mean everyone else should agree with you.
2. Calling The Bee too conservative or too liberal just makes you look cranky.
3. Drop the name-calling, period.
4. We have to understand what you mean to appreciate your astuteness.
5. The Bee is not in business to pander to preconceived notions (see No. 2).
6. Get it straight yourself before blaming the other guy for being wrong.
7. No one wins religious arguments, so forget it.
8. We know the president didn't discuss his momentous decision with you, so get over it.
9. Who doesn't support the troops?
10. If you want us to live in peace, stop poking me in the eye!
- Stan Ketchum, Folsom

Saturday, January 1, 2005

A New Year, Take 1

I slept in till almost 5 this morning after staying up till about 10:45. Pretty late for us, but it was New Years Eve after all. And I have taken the time this morning to look out the front door before sitting down to type, so I can report that the new year has begun with clear skies. I’m not sure of where the storm went; it was supposed to hang around all day today. It was raining last night and there were stories of snowfall down to the 1,500’ level.

Since it is the first day of the new year, I suppose I could reveal some, not all, resolutions I might have made for this fresh year. One would be to post to my blog more often. Another would be to slow down…I was reminded the other day that it has been one year since I retired and I can’t remember one day of that year where I took the time to simply enjoy the day. I always had something to do.

Well, so much for memory! It was only yesterday that I took a day to simply enjoy. We decided to see a movie and the movie we chose was Lemony Snicket: A Series of Unfortunate Events. It had been 4 years? since we had last seen a motion picture in a theatre and so we weren’t sure that we would or could enjoy the experience. It turned out to be a very good experience. The volume of the sound in the theatre was too high, but that was expected. The screen loomed far too large, even for our mid theatre seating, but that was expected as well. And except for one ill mannered child and their clueless parent, the small crowd was well behaved. And to top it off, it was a good movie.

The movie was rated PG and it was so refreshing to sit through a complete movie without profane language and sexual innuendo in every scene. Jim Carey did a good job, though some of his lines were written for an adult audience. (No, not that “adult”, I mean adult as in older and wiser.) He only displayed some of his Jerry Lewis like humor in a scene or two. The computer graphics were well done and I thoroughly enjoyed the set and scenery work as well. All in all, a good movie. And according to the ending lines, “…Count Olaf disappeared.” there is an obvious attempt to make a sequel quite possible.

Now, where do I find another movie like that? Although we enjoyed this one, it will probably be at least 6 months before we can find another PG rated movie to see.