Thursday, November 30, 2006
You've got to get it together, you happy few who are on my blogroll. I don't mind adding new sites, but I hate taking them off. Listen up!
I am a person who keeps all my old address books, and never eliminates anyone, even if they are dead. It seems so heartless, somehow, to cross their names off just because they are no longer among the living. After all, many of them still vote, especially the Democrats.
So you can imagine how I hate to take people off my blogroll. Lots of my blogmates threaten to abandon their blogs, but I keep them on the list in case they change their minds. Okay, I did eliminate Nickie Goomba, but he had a good excuse, being dead and therefore not posting much. Hardly at all, as a matter of fact.
A favorite site of mine was called Trouserquand, owned and operated by an Englishman called David Hadley. Hadley terminated Trouserquand with extreme prejudice; he took down everything, so you can't even look at his archives. Boo hoo!
Now air force wife is abandoning her site, lured by the glamour of spousebuzz. She will still be posting, but it's not quite the same.
So, boys and girls, don't abandon the ship. Keep blogging every day. I need you. America needs you.
If any of you quit, I will be forced to hold my breath until I turn blue, and you'll be sorry.
Posted by miriam at 9:39 PM
I bought a birthday present for my daughter, who lives in San Luis Obispo. I sent it at one of those places that handle stuff like that. I had to write the address at least three times, and I was very careful because San Luis Obispo is a stretch for some people.
I received a phone call soon after I got home. The delivery man couldn't figure out where this strange zip code was. He asked, Where in Oregon is it?
Thank God I insured it, because I think it is going to the place where all the lost luggage ends up. Or maybe in Oregon.
Posted by miriam at 9:34 PM
Oh, sure--I'll trust his every word.
This is the same James Baker who, along with the rest of Bush 41's senior staff, let Saddam Hussein stay in power back in 1991? The same James Baker from an administration that sold out the rebelling Iraqi Shiites to their deaths in 1991? The same James Baker who helped put the hardline on Israel back during the first Intifada?
The James Baker/Brent Scowcroft axis of realpolitik did a whole heckuva lot to get us into today's mess in the Middle East. But now we're looking to this old man for advice? Can someone tell us why?
Why? Why, he's a friend of the family.
Posted by miriam at 9:39 AM
|Your Birthdate: March 20|
You are a virtual roller coaster of emotions, and most people enjoy the ride.
Your mood tends to set the tone of the room, and when you're happy, this is a good thing.
When you get in a dark mood, watch out - it's very hard to get you out of it.
It's sometimes hard for you to cheer up, and your gloom can be contagious.
Your strength: Your warm heart
Your weakness: Trouble controlling your emotions
Your power color: Black
Your power symbol: Musical note
Your power month: February
Posted by miriam at 1:20 AM
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Iowahawk, the Onion, and the Nose on Your Face will soon go out of business. Reality has outdone them all.
I thought this was a a parody:
While their parents shell out $33,246 a year in tuition, Columbia University students doff their clothes at naked parties, flock to sex toys workshops, broadcast porn on campus TV, bake anatomically correct pies for the "Erotic Cake-Baking Contest" ...
Others volunteer for the bullwhip at Conversio Virium, the university-sanctioned S&M club that means "exchange of power" in Latin. It calls itself a "discussion group" that provides "education and peer support" and promotes "safe, sane and consensual play." But the club doesn't just talk.
Some workshops offered by the college:
# "Sex Toys 101." The university's Health Services division teamed up with Toys in Babeland, a SoHo sex shop, to host a sex toys workshop in John Jay Hall on Feb. 15.
Though it was part of "Safer Sex Week," the playthings on display on W. 114th St. included bondage and S&M tools like whips, paddles, "floggers" and "slappers."
# "Sexhibition." The annual campus sex fair, held in April, featured phallic ring toss games, orgasm-for-beginners workshops and discreet liaisons in the "Tent of Consent."
# "Thug Play with Princess Wendy." Another session of the S&M club, taking place Oct. 30 in Hamilton Hall, was advertised as "beating, punching and slamming boys into lockers, and why bullies are so so so much fun!"
# "Smut TV." CTV, Columbia's in-house, student-run TV station, has a faculty adviser, uses school equipment and space, gets $5,021 a year in student activity fees - and is hungry for new viewers.
So at 10 p.m. on Oct. 17, it entered the hard-core porn business: Broadcasting into scores of dorms and lounges, it aired a five-minute clip, downloaded from the Internet, of a naked couple engaged in sex.
Something for the students to look back on fondly as they pay off their six-figure student loans, while folding sweaters at the Gap.
Posted by miriam at 9:48 AM
Monday, November 27, 2006
As far as I can see, the only party that benefits from Gemayel's assassination is Israel. Israel was the main loser in last summer's war, at least politically and strategically. The country's leaders began threatening a new round of fighting even before they began pulling troops out of the south of Lebanon. Hezbollah's post-war ascendence was the most visible and troubling sign of Israel's seemingly unprecedented military weakness and strategic blundering.
Pulling off an assassination like this, which is by no means beyond Israel's ability, would serve several goals: First, it would turn the chaos that Hezbollah was trying to create in the Lebanese political system against it. Instead of Hezbollah managing the post-war chaos in order to strengthen its position, the movement is now forced onto the defensive and must react to a new dynamic in which Christians (with the exception of the breakaway Aoun faction) and Sunnis are more united than ever in their desire to block Hezbollah's takeover of the system. Second, if the country descends into civil war, which is a frightening, if still distant possibility, Hezbollah would be effectively neutralized, and Israel could rely on Maronites and perhaps Sunnis to attack Hezbollah without Israel facing the international condemnation it received during the war.
If we're so smart, why can't we subjugate the world?
Posted by miriam at 6:02 PM
Are we going to negotiate with the Iranian madmen?
And what is the common factor involved in the instability of those three areas? Iran. Hezbollah in Lebanon is an Iranian proxy. Hamas and al-Qaida in the Gaza Strip are assisted and funded by Iran (and given aid and comfort by Iran's Jew-hating genocidal rhetoric), while Iran is the primary player in the 'sectarian' violence in Iraq, details of which are discussed above.
This is not a complicated situation, and can be solved very simply and quickly. Here is the Tammy Middle East Strategy Plan:
1) One bullet, strategically placed, for Hezbollah in Lebanon leader Hassan Nasrallah.
2) One bullet, stategically placed, for Muqtada al-Sadr.
3) The bombing of Iran to eliminate its nuclear bomb program, and to wipe out its genocidal leadership.
The forthcoming Baker Plan?
1) Negotiate with Iran on how best to abandon the Iraqi people.
Hmm, which plan do you think bodes better for the future?
Bush refused to meet with terrorists. Now he's going to follow the Jimmy Carter script, negotiating an agreement that won't be worth the paper it's written on. How can you negotiate with a lunatic? They insist the moon is made of green cheese, we think it prpbably isn't. Split the difference?
I think we're just going to kick this problem down the road. Until the fanatics stage another attack on us. Then, even if every nun in America took off her shoes before boarding an aircraft, we'll realize these killers mean business.
Except for Pelosi and her crew.
Posted by miriam at 9:18 AM
Sunday, November 26, 2006
The Eakins painting, the Gross Clinic, might stay in Philadelphia after all:
Mayor Street has nominated Thomas Eakins' masterpiece, The Gross Clinic, for protection under the city's historic preservation ordinance, noting the painting's deep historical and cultural resonance throughout Philadelphia, city officials said yesterday.
Designation as a "historic object,"... would prevent the painting from being altered or moved without the express approval of the Philadelphia Historical Commission. Its proposed sale by Thomas Jefferson University for $68 million ignited a burgeoning controversy. 
Stephanie Naidoff, city commerce director, said Street sent a letter to commission members on Friday requesting the designation for The Gross Clinic because he believes the painting is "a real treasure of Philadelphia."
"It's an icon of world art, but it is especially connected to Philadelphia, which has always been preeminent in medicine, and Dr. Gross was preeminent in his day," said Naidoff, referring to the surgeon at the center of the monumental canvas. "That's why the mayor requested this."
Samuel D. Gross was a renowned surgeon and educator at the university.
Courtesy of Phillyville, which has more information about the sale of the painting and links to other bloggers opposed to its sale.
Posted by miriam at 10:04 PM
Lots of pundits have remarked that, as of today, the Iraqi War has lasted longer than World War II.
My answer is: So what? It's a totally bogus statistic. Question: How long are wars supposed to last? Answer: Until someone wins.
When it lasts as long as the Hundred Years' War, I'll be concerned.
Posted by miriam at 9:47 PM
Friday, November 24, 2006
I decided to go to the Motor Vehicle Dept today, with a side trip to the Wilmington Institute Library. But when I reached downtown Wilmington, traffic was diverted all over the place because of a parade which had just taken place. I finally found the library, and by God, it was closed!
So as not to waste a trip, I went to look at the statue in Rodney Square. Sure enough, it was Caesar Rodney. Whodathunkit?
The statue shows his horse rearing up on his two hind legs. Does this mean something? I seem to remember that it matters whether the horse has all or some of his feet on the ground--it signifies something.
Well, what with the diverted traffic, I got lost. Now I've gone to the Motor Vehicle Dept before: I know how to get there. I just don't know where it is. I know you have to cross a body of water, but which one? So if I don't follow my exact, familiar route, I can wander around for hours. Throw in some one-way streets, and I am fated to take the grand tour of Wilmington. I finally got to see the Hotel Dupont:
and the Opera House:
The Opera House sparkled in the sunlight--beautiful.
I bet myself a million dollars that the Motor Vehicle Department would be closed, but I soldiered on anyway. It was closed, so I owe myself a million dollars.
Posted by miriam at 11:50 PM
Thursday, November 23, 2006
when I fear that this guy might have it right:
Let me begin by saying that most of our problems in Iraq stem from a flawed strategy that has been in place since the beginning of the war.
Our strategy in Iraq has been:
1) Fight the war on the cheap.
2) Ask the ground forces to perform missions that are more suitably performed by other branches of the American government.
3) Inconvenience the American people as little as possible.
4) Continue to fund the Air Force and Navy at the same levels that they have been funded at for the last 30 years while shortchanging the Army and Marines who are doing all of the fighting.
No wonder the war is not going well.
Ht to Donald Sensing.
Posted by miriam at 1:01 PM
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
I'm grateful, because:
I live in the best country in the world, ever.
I just had successful surgery.
My brother just got a (good)job.
I have two lovely daughters.
I have two brilliant grandsons.
I have Mr Charm.
We're going out to dinner in a fancy place.
I love my blogfriends--thank you, thank you, for reading and commenting. I love you all.
Posted by miriam at 12:55 PM
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
Sunday, November 19, 2006
Saturday, November 18, 2006
Mr Maliki criticised what he called the patronising US tone
towards the Iraqi Government ...
Look at it this way - if your country has lots of US troops on its soil to protect your country from threats, internal or external, then your country is our client and we are your patron. Client/patron relationships are not partnerships between equals....
Countries all over the world often claim that America is arrogant and doesn't respect them. This is the monologue of whining adolescents. If you want to be respected as an equal, then act like an equal. Protect yourself. Countries from Korea to Japan, from Germany to Italy rely on tens of thousands of US troops based on their land to protect them from external threats, real or potential. There is no reciprocity in these relationships. When we the last time you drove by a German army base? When was the last time you saw a group of Korean marines drinking in a local bar? Never, that's when.
Posted by miriam at 10:38 PM
Friday, November 17, 2006
Who was the bespoke provider of rattletraps to the Charm family. You would go to his lot, someone would see you nosing around, and soon the old guy would drop by. He always had one or two which were acceptable.
His Sales pitch consisted of two sentences: "Runs good. What more do you need?"
Actually, they did run good. Until they died of old age and went to car heaven. Then we dropped by the old guy's place and bought a new one. When my Geo Prizm was sliced and diced by a Lexus, I abandoned the corpse and went straight to the old guy's place, where I picked up something bigger than a breadbox.
So we are looking for a new (used) car in Delaware. Trouble is that Delaware is so small, we have to borrow car ads from Pennsylvania. I don't want to go there. I know, I know, it's only a mile or so away, but it requires a mind-shift I'm not yet ready for.
Well, yesterday my steering cut out in front of the Acme on Naaman's Rd--a dangerous spot. So I called 911, but I got Delaware County, PA. The operator switched me to the Delaware State Police and I described the situation. Then I decided to call AAA. I got the inevitable voice mail, which offered me choices in NJ, NY or Long Island. But I'm not in any of those places. I finally got connected to someone, who eventually terminated the conversation without helping any. Rinse and repeat. So I called the Delaware State Police again and shrieked at their dispatcher. 40 minutes had by now elapsed, and of course I had to go to the bathroom. But I couldn't get out of the car.
Finally, a cop appeared who was just a few years older than the car. Very nice and polite. Did not ask me for my driver's license and registration. Aren't they supposed to do that? They do in NJ. I told him I had called Triple A and he offered to call them himself. That did the trick. A tow truck rolled up in 20 minutes. The driver drove me to two different repair shops, neither of which could take me until maybe next week. Meanwhile, I intuited that something costly was wrong from the solemn handwringing and headshaking.
So now I'm tearing my hair out, looking for the ideal little old Delaware guy who sells cars that run good. Please, has anyone out there a clue to his whereabouts?
Posted by miriam at 9:48 PM
Thursday, November 16, 2006
This apparently really happened:
Apparently my friend was driving on one of the main drags in our town, and pulled up to a stop light and the people in the car next to her started flipping her off. She did what anyone else would do and flipped the bird right back at them.
The people then followed her to her destination, and the next thing she knows she is being lambasted with numerous dirty words....
My friend taunted her a bit, smiling and acting like it was no big deal, and then went into the store.
Something similar happened to me, in Wayne, New Jersey, as a matter of fact. I don't recall what brought on my assailant's anger, but she was much more agressive than friend. We were driving on the ring road around a shopping mall, when she pulled in front of me and got out of her car. She invited me to do the same, intimating that we should duke it out.
She kept ordering me to get out of the car, but a glance at the odds went like this: the car weighed two tons, I weighed 140 and she weighed maybe 150. I was overmatched against her, and she was way overmatched against the car. So I told her that I wasn't getting out of the car, and if she didn't move her vehicle I would run her over.
You could see her digest this shit muffin unwillingly, but after a haughty stare or two and some bad languages (she spoke English and Spanish, and said bad things in both), she got into her car and slammed the door viciously, which didn't hurt me in the least, and abandoned the quest.
Get out of the car? In New Jersey? I may be crazy, but not so crazy as all that.
Posted by miriam at 10:25 PM
So he comes out of his study and tells me, "I've figured out why so many people die in the hospital."
Me: "Oh, yes--why?"
Mr C: "The nurses are so high and mighty that they just don't do what they are supposed to do and let patients die."
Me: (Who is having a procedure--no make that Procedure--on Monday) "That really makes me feel good."
Mr C fails to understand this comment.
* Epiphany is Greek for a stupid idea.
Posted by miriam at 12:00 PM
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Monday, November 13, 2006
about the dismissal of Rumsfeld. It was such a non-classy thing to do, and done in such a non-classy way--like kicking out a stray dog who wandered into your yard.
I thought this president would stick to his guns. My heart sank when I heard he had appointed a committee to look into the prosecution of the war. You might as well appoint a committee to decide whether God exists.
This reminds me of a story told by Richard Feynman, who was appointed to a committee to look into the Challenger disaster. I can't remember the details, but it was clear that the committee was a monumental waste of time. Feynman wanted to go to Cape Canaveral to talk to the engineers, etc., but apparently that was not considered necessary. In short, the committee was just one big whitewash, until Feynman applied his wits to the matter. It soon became apparent that a $2.98 part had failed because of the cold temperature on the day of the launch, and that the engineers had warned that this might happen, but had been persuaded to withdraw their objections. I'm just amazed that the country has lasted as long as it has. I guess it's just a happy accident.
It seems apparent to me that we are in the same position as a locomotive headed down the track at 50 mph towards a 150 lb man. Normally, there could be no doubt about the outcome. Our resources are immense. But our will is weak. If the lefties have their way, the man will destroy the train.
Then my grandchildren will have to fight this battle all over again.
Posted by miriam at 9:10 AM
Saturday, November 11, 2006
Historic Philadelphia painting goes to the highest bidder:
Thomas Eakins' masterpiece The Gross Clinic - an iconic painting that is irrevocably identified with Philadelphia, where it was painted more than 125 years ago - is poised for sale by Thomas Jefferson University for a record $68 million to a partnership of the National Gallery of Art in Washington and a new museum planned by Wal-Mart heirs in Arkansas.
When are they going to sell the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall?
Posted by miriam at 2:01 PM
Friday, November 10, 2006
Barry Campbell warns of the dangers of book buying. Addicts are warned to get a library card instead.
That works pretty well, except that, although I have an A+ in checking out books, I only rate a D- in returning them. Also, libraries only have books that everyone wants to read. They don't have room to keep the rest.
But those are the books that I like to read. And I don't know what I want until I find it on the shelf. Who would have dreamed that I would buy, read, and love Siegfried Sassoon's elegiac memoir of his youth, Memoirs of a Fox-Hunting Man? Or a sweet little book about growing up in Ireland called Never No More, by Moira Laverty? Or Seven and a Half Cents, by Richard Bissell? Or the mysteries of Elizabeth Daly?
I like authors who write a lot of books. Nothing irritates me more than finding out that an author I really, really like has only written a few books, while a twit like Joyce Carol Oates turns out at least one a year. And when I really like an author I read everything he has ever written, insofar as I can get my hands on them. That's why Trollope is such a satisfactory find. He wrote lots and lots of books, all of them imbued with a certain civilized charm ony the British can master. And many of them are in libraries.
But about those libraries: for years I worked in libraries, and I generally had at least 50 library books at home at any one time. Since I got to buy the adult books, I got to read most everything new that I liked for free. And of course, I was fine-exempt. What a shock it was to emerge into the ordinary world, and pay fines of 10 cents a day! And on what people are fond of calling a "fixed income." It's fixed all right, and I would like to fix it at a higher level.
If you are like me, and you know what you want to read, you can generally find it online at abebooks.com or alibris.com. I find better deals at these two sites than I do at Amazon. A warning, though: the book may only cost a dollar, but shipping is inevitably $3.95.
Still a good deal. When you finish, donate them to the library book sale.
Posted by miriam at 8:46 PM
My mailman usually arrives around 4:30. So today I get my mail, and there is a letter from the administrator of my health insurance plan, claiming they have not received a payment since September! I check my online banking records--a check was sent electronically in October, ditto in November. The bank confirms this. I want to climb through the telephone wire and cut her throat, but she goes home at 4. So my blood pressure is up to no purpose.
Meanwhile, I have been having health problems and have been kicked from doctor to doctor: "Miz Scarlett, I don't know nuthin 'bout palpitations!" Finally, having run out of specialists to refer me to, the cardiologist says I need a roto-rooter treatment, aka angioplasty. I take this news calmly, because I told him two months ago I had cardio problems.
I happen to mention the upcoming procedure to a casual friend at the gym, and she tells me the story of a dear friend of hers who was never sick a day in his life, until he had this test and died instantly.
Also, my lawn guy appears to be AWOL. Everyone else's lawn is groomed, but mine is a carpet of leaves, which are beginning to blow onto the neighbors' pristine lawns. Baleful looks from the retired man across the street who finds something to do with his lawn every blessed day. He hasn't said anything yet.
Okay, it's been that kind of day.
Posted by miriam at 4:50 PM
Thursday, November 09, 2006
I feel like someone has stuck a pin in me. Deflated. Blah. Apprehensive. I was already a little queasy about James (realpolitik) Baker's little committee taking a look at Iraq. Baker never saw a problem he wouldn't give to Syria to solve. The old anti-Semite.
Advice to our Iraqi friends: Get an American passport ASAP. Or buy yourself a helicopter large enough to accommodate the entire family. Clorox will help get the purple off your fingers. Remember, you don't know what democracy really means, anyway. You wouldn't know what to do with it if you had it. Learn to speak Iranian.
Advice to Donald Rumsfeld: get out of town.
Advice to George Allen: attend synagogue more regularly. Everyone already hates you for being Jewish, might as well get in good with God.
Posted by miriam at 10:26 PM
so I can be depressed at faster speeds. Since DSL doesn't work that well, and Comccast is on my enemies list, I had no choice but to go with Verizon FIOS, whatever that is. No, don't tell me, I don't want to know.
I am so surprised and upset that the electorate let the Dems out of their cages. I certainly have no confidence that they will start acting like grown-ups.
Giuliani in '08--that's if the country is still here.
Get your burkas out, ladies.
Posted by miriam at 8:43 AM
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
Monday, November 06, 2006
|Your Dominant Intelligence is Spatial Intelligence|
You've got a good sense of space and how the world around you looks.
You can close your eyes and "see" images. You have innate artistic talent.
An eye for color and shapes, you're also a natural designer.
Since you think in pictures, visual aids and demonstartions help you learn best.
Posted by miriam at 12:57 PM
From a lady in England:
When you call me, you will now have a menu of options on my new voice mail system to choose from.
Query: What kind of uplifting music would you suggest the lady transmit? I nominate Elvis.
Posted by miriam at 12:44 PM
A lady in my demograhic (codgerette, junior class) recently confided in me that an attractive man had made a pass at her. She decided against taking him up on it, because, in her words: "No way am I going to take my clothes off in front of a man again."
Posted by miriam at 12:13 PM
Thursday, November 02, 2006
and I don't even understand their system. It sucks.
Posted by miriam at 6:38 PM
Last night I couldn't sleep--at all. Normally I would be online, sharing my witty apercus with my fan base, but Verizon was down. Here is how I spent the 6 hours:
Posted by miriam at 5:47 PM
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
Craig is willing to give John Kerry the benefit of the doubt:
After only hearing what Kerry said at the rally once, I was willing to refrain from dismissing his excuse out of hand....The point here, though, is.....so what? It doesn’t make him any less of a despicable human being....
Posted by miriam at 11:29 AM
Posted by miriam at 11:10 AM
Older stuff mostly about family and libraries
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License.