Archive for the ‘this motel will be standing until i’ve paid my bill’ Category

It’s really hard being a libertarian sometimes. My parents were down here a couple of weekends ago and we had a long sort-of talk about how I’m wrong to be so, well, libertarian. It makes me feel bad because I like to please my parents and yet I like also to be intellectually and spiritually consistent. Libertarianism is the only way I can do that.

There are times I fantasise about going back to Republicanism, but then I think of how the Republicans in office are in many ways indistinguishable from the Democrats in office. As far as spending goes, that is. I’d also like to say there are times when I flirt with Liberalism and then I realise that, well, it just cannot happen. I can’t condone Forcing Your Way To Doing Good.

I suppose “libertarianism” is the best way I can think of to say “look, we’re all adults here.”

I’m not a pot smoker. Whether or not I’m a gun nut remains to be seen. But there are some other things about me on my mind tonight.

  • I have to have two procedures where they snake cameras down your throat and up your bum. I don’t mind the idea of that so much, as I’ll be asleep for the whole thing. Or so they’ve promised. What I AM dreading is that apparently I have to buy this nasty beverage stuff and drink it by the gallon. I’m quite terrified of that. I plan to spend the next 10 days dreading the thought of drinking that ooze. The doctor has promised I may take my phenergan, so there’s that anyway.
  • I’m supposed to be writing a 50K word novel for this National Novel Writing Month challenge. I’ve hardly written anything because I am just petrified and I don’t know why. In case you haven’t noticed I haven’t even been blogging. I’m like one of those guys who tells everyone he’s a poet but has never written a poem. It’s shameful.
  • I’m almost irrationally angry at the striking writers in Hwood. Intellectually I see their point, but functionally I’m just seething. I don’t ask much from these people. Just give me a couple hours two or three nights a week of something I can look forward to. Something which takes my mind of my world and transports me someplace else. We have an agreement. I’ll put my books down and step away from Age Of Mythology on the Mac [blast them for not releasing the Titans expansion pack for this platform]. You’ll churn out something at least PASSABLE. How hard is that? I know everyone’s fighting over what they think is right and that’s okay, but here’s the deal. I can just as easily go back to my books and my games and my knitting to Books on CD or whatever. Those few hours I gave you each week can become filled with something else pretty easily. It’s like how when I went to Florida my boyfriend took another girl to the Beach Boys concert with the tickets I bought him. I wasn’t there so he found something else to amuse him. If you all aren’t careful I’ll go to the Beach Boys with Civilization IV. That’s all I’m saying.

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My neighbours put their house on the market over the weekend.

They’re the only other people on our street with the same floorplan we have (Brandywine with a walk-out basement).   I was curious to see how much they’re asking.  And surprised to see the answer.

Have our houses really appreciated 30% in eight years?

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This is one of those posts where I’d like to be all self-righteous and complain about the nasty people in the world who dump dogs they’re tired of. But I can’t talk too big, since I’m not in a position right now to give either of these kids homes.

A friend of ours found them dumped in Hamilton Creek Park yesterday and asked that we help him in finding them homes. Husband just got back from their photo shoot and says they’re both full chocolate labs, approximately 8months old.

If you know of anyone who would like to give these kids a home, please contact me.

k dot coble at comcast dot net


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I haven’t written much about Leslie Bennetts’ The Feminine Mistake because I don’t generally care to promote the various books in the You
Are A Failed Human Being
genre. I assume many people are like me in that they are plagued with frequent moments of self-doubt and fits of wistfullness. I personally have enough night feedings of my worry-baby without some academic or journalist adding fuel to the fire.

The more I’ve read about the book over the last few days, however, the more I realise Bennetts has not written yet another diatribe against Stay At Home Moms, nor has she written yet another paean to female careerism. Bennetts has written the ultimate anti-feminist romance novel.

Now, I’m not a regular reader of romance novels, but I have picked up the odd bodice-ripper for a slice of mental junk food. I’ve also read the back jacket blurbs on countless others–especially since various publishers have been putting thriller-type covers on romances. (Author’s Note: How irritating is it to grab up what looks like a good blood and gore thriller only to have it be the tale of Chase and Mandy’s tryst in Majorica. RRRGH.) The comment element in a number of romances is the Road Not Taken. For awhile there we had a glut of stories where women in early middle age move back to their childhood home and fall madly in love all over again with their high school sweethearts. Then there are the women in late middle age who pursue their dreams of opening a chocolatierie or an Italian restaurant. Heck, I’ve even read books where BOTH things happen.

Women may have the right to choose, but it seems we are often unsatisfied with our choices. I think that’s part of the parcel of woman-worry, the vestigial remains of what made us good at guarding the camp while our men hunted. No matter how good things are, we will always think of what we should have done to make them better. We should have had another baby or we should have used better birth control to keep from having the expenses of the children we’ve got. We should have finished grad school. We should have married when we were younger. We shouldn’t have bought this house or sold that car. We should have blogged less and finished our novel.

In The Feminine Mistake Bennetts provides a pile of dry data and weepy anecdotes about why women should never leave the workplace. Husbands die or divorce you, the career ladders get slippery and crowded in your absence and financial catastrophe looms around every corner. Bennetts’ philosophy is that women open themselves up to vulnerability by opting out of the career market when they choose to raise children. Ah, for the road not taken! Just like a good romance novel, Bennetts spends a lot of time telling you how much better life would be if you made the ‘right’ choice.

She further claims that women’s lives are worth less because they sacrifice their earning power to stay home. Heh. What is life worth? How do we measure that? Is a person worth less because they make less? That seems to be one of Bennetts’ driving points. If only you had stayed in the workplace, your lifetime earnings would be so much higher! Nowhere is there an accounting for the value of a cup of tea drunk at your kitchen table between loads of laundry, or a tangible measure of the value of playing on the floor with your kid.

Over the years feminism has gotten very good at talking about rights and the value of choice. What’s the point? If we aren’t willing to let free adults make the choices which best suit them and their families, we’re just substituting one hierarchy for another. Now instead of being barefoot and pregnant, are all women supposed to be briefcase-toting pie-chart readers? I somehow don’t think that’s the best idea.

Husbands die and divorce no matter what women do. Life happens. Some choices turn out well, others turn out badly. It’ll be nice when we get away from the practice of pointing at other people’s lives and calling those lives ‘mistakes’.

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My Husband has been invited to lunch by one of the Job Prospects tomorrow.   Do Job Prospects routinely invite you to lunch to turn you down for the job?

“We really liked you, but we can’t hire you.  Please, by all means, enjoy a salad on us.”

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You might also suggest to your local representatives which of those groups of people should lose the services they rely on so that we can eliminate the $8 or $9 in tax we pay on every $100 of food we purchase.

–Tennessee Taxpayer And Vehicle Services Division in an email dated 26 April, 2007

$8 or $9 isn’t a lot of money to some of us. There are those of us who spend fifteen times that amount on cable.
To the poor and struggling, however, $8 or $9 is a great deal of money. It is several days’ worth of canned tuna and bread, or a couple luxuries like frozen peas and carrots.

The Sales Tax on Food is a Regressive tax which penalises most those who can least afford it. Everyone in Tennessee eats, and unless you are on food stamps you pay the sales tax on food. If you are a person of limited means, that will cost you a larger portion of your food budget income.

Right now the Tennessee State Government has taken in FAR more money that it needs. A bulk of this “found money” comes out of the hides of the working poor in the form of a food sales tax.

you can find some stupid things the state spends money on. … [I]f you give me your checkbook, I can find lots of stuff you spend money on that I might think are stupid.

–State Employee

The State of Tennessee’s money IS our money. It belongs to US. The citizens of the State of Tennessee. And we’d like to see a bit more of it in our hands where we can decide how it gets spent.

Please join me in the Nine Bucks Back crusade. Let the poor and struggling of Tennessee have their own nine bucks back.

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If our fine folks in government can do it, so can I.

I’m stumping for a pork barrell project of my own.

Mothership BBQ needs some help.

Do you know any investors? Give ’em a holler.

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In the movie version of Tolkein’s Fellowship of the Ring, the weary and bedraggled band of Man, Elf, Dwarf and Hobbit face relentless horrors and death. They trudge through barren wastes, frozen peaks and cavernous mountain passages flaming with hellfire.

Then they get a little bit of a break. In Lothlorien, home of Galadriel, they find water, shelter, rest and a chance to mourn.

Yesterday was a Lothlorien moment for me. I’ve struggled for weeks under various assailments from health, work and threats of lawsuit. By Thursday of this last week I had definitely ‘fallen into shadow’. I told Husband that I needed to find my strength again, my energy to be myself. When Aunt B. first proposed this gathering a month ago I thought it sounded like a nice idea and a fun way to pass a few hours without TiVo. I didn’t realise that by the time the actual day arrived most of us would be in dire need of a soul-recharging.

I don’t think I can fully describe how healing it is to have a group of women gathered around bounty, beside a flowing stream. And yes, I’m being pretentiously wordy, but I don’t honestly have any other words to describe it. Awesome? Overused. Cool? Too ‘High School Musical’. Rad? Please get over yourself. Bitchin’? Heh. Probably, but not in the ways you think.

There is a large wooden table with some story behind it. Every woman brought a bit of food or a bit of drink, symbols of contributions from her soul, designed to nourish the group. There was wine to symbolise spirit, life, death and rebirth. The stream gurgled by with a bubbling peace song.

Like all good midwestern women, I seemed to have retained that spark of Mother which finds us in the kitchen arranging food dishes, fretting over their presentation. I’ve discovered over the years that I’m generally at my happiest when I’m in a kitchen organising an assault of food for a mass of people. That’s the arena where I learned womanhood from my grandmother, mother and aunts in the farmhouse at Kewanna.

Like all women with an edge of snarl, I found true happiness in a deck of cards. I’ve been known to play Euchre for many hours running, in marathon sessions of Anabaptist cunning and hard-knock passes. By the time we broke out the cards I had relaxed enough to barely mind the fact that there were no seats without a back to the door. Praise God that a Euchre deck is cleaned of all eights. Nevermind that my partner and I lost by two points. That’s a respectful showing in any Euchre session, and due punishment for my arrogant call of trump on a whim.

I’ve been in many gatherings where everyone has a lot in common. Those are always nicely bonded with some degree of fellow-feeling. We’re all Christians or conservatives or geeks, nerds, foodies, Disneyphiles. What was so special about last night was the same thing that made Lothlorien special. We all have relatively little in common at the surface. We are Men and Elves and Dwarves and Hobbits. Liberals, Libertarians. Faith and Atheist. Mothers and the Childfree by Choice. But we’re friends because we’ve shared bits of hard journey together and we draw strength from our common hearts.

I owe a debt of gratitude to B for planning it, Mack for hosting it, Lynnster for getting me there in one piece, saraclark for getting me home in once piece and everyone else for putting up with me and the six-foot men. Bless all of you for who you are and how you be.

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If you pray, pray for us.

If you don’t pray, please still remember us.

This is a big week over here, and we’ve got a lot riding on the outcome.   For various reasons I don’t want to go into on the blog, it’s becoming very essential for me that things proceed forward.

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This day is killing me.

It reminds me of being a teenager and hoping my ne’er do well boyfriend would call me.

I’ve got several correspondences outstanding.  I think I’ve hit the ‘Get Mail’ button about twelve thousand times.

On a related note, the people at Prevention dot com and Amazon dot com can bite me.

They clearly have no idea how horrible it is to hear the incoming-mail ding, only to receive their loveless dictates on what I should be eating and reading.

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