Archive for the ‘disorder in the house’ Category

Every now and again I’ll go on a binge reading marathon. It helps when said marathons coincide with the times my body goes on strike, because then I can fill two purposes with one volume.

I do read every day, regardless of how I feel. Even if it’s only a few pages, I read. After forty years I kind of feel empty if I come to the end of a day and haven’t read.

But the binge days are different. They hit every six or seven weeks, completely out of step with my other biorhythms. When they arrive I feel this gut-wrenching crave for reading. I don’t want to do anything else. I just read. I plow through books like the razor prow of a ship slicing through the thick salt sea and let idea after idea churn in the foam.

This particular binge has been inconveniently overlaid on my chemo days, which are better suited for unremitting nausea and inescapable sleep. So I solved the problem by reading during every waking moment, rising above the nausea by focusing all my brain’s intent on Winterfell.

The bad thing about this has been the dreams. I’ve read four books in three days, finishing three new ones and meandering through A Clash Of Kings the way one meanders through a book they’ve read and read and read. But when I sleep–and I sleep a lot–the four books sort of congeal and reform a sort of…what’s that word…chimera. A chimera of love story and murder story and high fantasy and low humour.

I’m scared to sleep now.

I’m sure this happens to other people; I’m not anything all that special. I wonder if they, too, get to the place where they’re startled to hear someone speak to them. In the books no one talks to you. Even when the writer breaks the fourth wall you always know that there are millions of yous being addressed. You are never the only you in a book. It is kind of strange to suddenly be pulled back to the plane where you exist in truth.

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Have I ever mentioned how much I love passing kidney stones?  It’s become one of my most treasured hobbies.

On that note, I may either blog here copiously over the next few days or I may be a guest of HCA.   You never know.

Regardless, I’m so tempted to not follow blogs at all on Tuesday.  I just don’t know that I’m up for the whole thing.  Besides, I’ve already figured out what it’ll pretty much look like.   And since I’m supposed to increase my fluid intake, I figured I’d come up with a drinking game.  (In my case it’ll be swigs of water, but you feel free to choose your own poison.)

  • “Where I was=In Boise”   Take a big swig if the person had no concrete ties to anyone directly affected, but goes on as though they lost their entire family in the Twin Towers
  • “So Easy A Caveman Could Do It”  Two big swigs if the post mentions how we haven’t found Bin Laden yet.
  • “Heart Of Glass”  A big swig if the post mentions nuking any desert countries.
  • “I Think My Sepllchck Is Borken”  A swig and a half if the post uses the word “Dhimmicrat” or “Rethuglican”
  • “Math Is Hard”  Drink a half litre if the post talks about how we’ve lost X many more soldiers in since 9/11 than civilians who died on 9/11.   Drink the other half-litre if the post uses the phrase War on Terror.  Yet another half-litre if they put War On Terror in snide-quotes.
  • “When Life Gives You Lemons”  Make up a nice batch of Crystal Light Lemonade to keep on hand for when the post talks about Good Things Happening In Iraq.
  • “On The Rocks”   Have you a cold glass when the post sarcastically mentions yellow ribbon magnets.  Have another half-glass if the post mentions that the magnets were probably made in China.
  • “All The Tea In”  Make up a nice batch of sweet tea for when a post mentions that we’re kidding ourselves about the war on terror if we can’t even protect our food supply from China.
  • “No Mixing” Straight up water for every mention of how we’re supposed to be fighting for oil but gas prices are going up.
  • “Heartless Bitch” Drink whatever you want whenever someone proposes turning 9/11 memories into a drinking game.

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I guess we’re having this conversation again. As a conservative libertarian who swims in a sea of liberals, I’m used to being thought ‘wrong’ or ‘stupid’ or ‘misguided’. Goes with the territory, I suppose.

On the 4th of July I had a conversation with a 9-year old who seemed to understand the concept of libertarianism and charity better than most of the people I’ve encountered lately. Unlike Mack, young Declan* (not his real name, remember…) got the general idea I was trying to put across. So maybe I haven’t explained myself well enough to be understood out here in the blogosphere. Maybe it’s a conversation that needs to happen face to face. Regardless of the limitations of the medium, I’ll try.

I am not greedy. I do not despise the poor and downtrodden.

Like Thomas Jefferson I believe wholeheartedly in the separation between Church and State. Like Jesus I believe in “rendering unto Caeser what is Caeser’s and unto God what is God’s.”

What this means to me is that I do not believe it is the job of the State or ANY institution, be it a church or faith-based charity to look after the poor and downtrodden. I believe such things are our responsibilities as human beings. Individual human beings.

I have nothing against charities–secular or faith-based–if that’s how a group of individuals decides to make their charity most effective. If you want to give the money you’ve earned to Catholic Charities or the United Way or Mennonite Disaster Relief, that’s your business. But I don’t believe the Government should take your money by force and redistribute it the way they see fit. That’s my opinion on taxes, entitlement programs, and federal funding of faith-based charities.

There’s a common misconception floating out there in the ether to which several liberals seem to be latching on. That’s the concept that conservatism is anti-community and pro-greed. I don’t quite know where these memes generated, but I’ve been seeing them a lot lately. I feel as though I’m not getting the original memoranda upon which they were printed.

And here’s where it gets tricky. Because it is my hard and fast rule that I will not give a resumé of my charitable deeds. Doing so means that the charity aspect of it all stops and the whited sepulchre kicks in. I could go looking for the myriad studies about who gives more to charity–conservatives or liberals–but I’m not playing that game. It’s all judgmental and sanctimonious and advances that hideous “us v. them” mentality.

Conservatism is not about keeping our money for ourselves, but deciding for ourselves the best uses of our money in benefit to the world.

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Two VENTS in two days. Not good. So I’m More tagging this one.  It’ll maybe make my blog look less insane.  Maybe.  (more…)

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The beginning of my own sense of separation from the Bush administration came in January 2005, when the president declared that it is now the policy of the United States to eradicate tyranny in the world, and that the survival of American liberty is dependent on the liberty of every other nation. This was at once so utopian and so aggressive that it shocked me. For others the beginning of distance might have been Katrina and the incompetence it revealed, or the depth of the mishandling and misjudgments of Iraq.

What I came in time to believe is that the great shortcoming of this White House, the great thing it is missing, is simple wisdom. Just wisdom–a sense that they did not invent history, that this moment is not all there is, that man has lived a long time and there are things that are true of him, that maturity is not the same thing as cowardice, that personal loyalty is not a good enough reason to put anyone in charge of anything, that the way it works in politics is a friend becomes a loyalist becomes a hack, and actually at this point in history we don’t need hacks.

Bush…presented himself as a conservative, garnered all the frustrated hopes of his party, turned them into victory, and not nine months later was handed a historical trauma that left his country rallied around him, lifting him, and his party bonded to him. He was disciplined and often daring, but in time he sundered the party that rallied to him, and broke his coalition into pieces. He threw away his inheritance. I do not understand such squandering.

That was Peggy Noonan’s stuff, there. I’ve been trying to think of a way to say all that for awhile now. But since she just did, I guess it saves me the trouble, huh?

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Oh, Rudy Giuliani. How inadequate I think you are! How terrified I am that you might become president! Your main claims to fame seems to be that you didn’t wet yourself on the morning of 9/11 and that you weren’t scared to appear on Saturday Night Live. The fact that you seem to think the Constitution was nothing more than a frat prank produced by some eighteenth century freemasons has little bearing on whether or not you should be president, according to some folks. You talk a good game and look good on the teevee.

Speaking of “on the teevee”, I guess there was another debate that I missed. (We have a lot of paint drying around here that I simply must keep an eye on.) In that debate I hear from folks that you laid a smackdown on my preferred candidate, Dr. Ron Paul. Now, I like Dr. Paul because even in the areas where we disagree he at least honours the intentions of liberty. If Toms Paine and Jefferson had a very old, very pale baby he would be Ron Paul. So I like the guy not only for what he will do for me but what he won’t do to me.

Anyway, back to the circus debate.

Dr. Paul says that we were attacked on 9/11 because we had too large a military presence in the Middle East and we don’t fully understand the “irrational politics of the Middle East.” Now, this is one area where we differ. I think Ron Paul is maybe a bit too kind toward the nutbars who think that the best way to express your displeasure about life is to blow up a few thousand innocent bystanders. As with serial killers, I think “mommy didn’t hug me” and “you have a military base in my hometown” are poor reasons for killing babies.

But here’s my issue. Dr. Paul’s point of view is a common one. I first heard it standing in the bathroom of my office building on 9/11. I was refreshing my makeup after having cried a little bit. Another woman doing the same thing said pretty much what Dr. Paul said–“they did this because we are in their country”–and I politely smeared my lipstick all over her face disagreed. Since that day, I think I’ve heard or read that view of things approximately nineteen thousand and forty-six times. I still disagree.

Yet Rudy Giuliani–a man who wants to be in charge of our foreign policy–claims to have never before heard “that excuse”. That the first time he ever laid ears on a non-interventionist opinion was during the debate with Dr. Paul.



Well, either Giuliani is so ignorant of foreign policy that he hasn’t heard the rationale of 50% of the country OR he’s so eager to have a good TeeVee moment that he’ll lie just to hear the applause.

Either way, that is NOT presidential material.

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Note: Read this post on Tuesday Morning. I’ve written too much for one day. This should be my Tuesday Post.

UPDATE : See update at end.  Apparantly I should have waited to WRITE this until Tuesday.


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It seems that it’s okay to express an opinion in the City of LaVergne. If you agree with the City Board, that is. Otherwise, you’re just some jerk with a computer.

LaVergne is a small town. But this story is so very AMERICAN in its practices. We are theoretically free and want so much to be brave. But as we’ve given the governnment more control over our lives, we have much more reason to be afraid. Ivy says it best:

They keep harping on about my real name, why? So my tax payments can conveniently get lost? So when I’m one minute late on the water bill my water will get cut off? So when my grass is one millimeter longer than the code states, they can come write me tickets? So they can sic the police department on me? No thank you.

This is what happens when government stops being a servant and starts being a master.

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UPDATE:  Feel free to just skip this post.   I should have followed my normal rule and sat on it for at least an hour.   I overreacted.   Since I don’t delete whole posts I can’t delete it.   But I do want to run it with a giant flashing “I was in a really bad unrelated mood” sign. (more…)

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I’m so sick of hearing about this weekend’s upcoming “Sales Tax Holiday” that it’s not even funny. I’m sick of the politicians acting as though they’ve done some magnanimous thing by granting us the right to purchase a few goods for 10% off.

Meanwhile, these same “magnanimous” fraktards are down at the Statehouse trying to figure out a way to keep taxing our FOOD spending.

Here’s the thing, you ‘generous’ fellows:

I do not need a computer. I do not need glue sticks. I do not need Toughskins Jeans or Trapper Keepers.

I do need food. I’m on a very tight budget right now, and saving 10% on food means that I get to eat for TWO EXTRA DAYS for the same money.

So let’s quit patting ourselves on the back for this stupid “holiday” and do some meaningful tax-reduction work.

UPDATE: the Bad Doggie, No Schools Version

So I sent a little email to salestax.holiday@state.tn.us to let them know that I cared not one fiddler’s fart about this whole tax holiday in light of the fact that the State government continues to overcollect massively and that a food tax reduction was needed. I received this reply: (more…)

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