Same job, different uniform.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Concerning Senator Craig

This afternoon, I wrote a letter to Senator Larry Craig.

You can see that note here

Senator Craig has been a good senator, and has always appeared to be a fundamentally decent man. In this instance, however, it is clear that his judgment was badly in error and his options are few and personally unappealing.

But it is clear what he must do.

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Friday, August 17, 2007

Going Out West Where I Belong

We start our drive to Idhao today. I'm so excited. I'm always excited to be driving west. There's something wild and free about the remoteness of the roads in South Dakota, Wyoming, Montanta.

I can't help but feel that the thrill, however diminished it is by progress, is a little like what the pioneers felt.


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Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Rafter Nearly Drowns in Boise River

There is something heartening, incredible about this story.

The unidentified [58 year old] woman was unconscious, not breathing and had no pulse when she was freed from the snag and pulled ashore. Her bathing suit was caught on the tree.

In essence, she drowned.

But she didn't. She lived. I love the good news. We need more good news. Bring us the good news!

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Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Second Time Around

I've noticed a trend in my reading habits: I am re-reading books I read as a child. Do you do this?

"Youth is wasted on the young." I actually said that today, heaven help me. Is children's literature wasted on the young? Of course not. And yet (how do I articulate this?) as children we haven't experienced so much of what gives a good writer his voice.

While an author may not write a children's book about death (though some do), their writing is colored by their own passage through grief. As adults we can share in this thoughtful coloring, but as children, most of us haven't grieved deeply. Our fragile world alternates between the solid ground of need and want and the eternal reach of our imaginations.

Put another way, we haven't experienced life in a way that gives rise to a true appreciation of metaphor, nuance and wit.

So paradoxically, the writers that shape our young mind and form our earliest impressions of good literature are expressing ideas, thoughts and feelings that are, in fact, still forming. How strange!

Children should be reading the classics, and as soon as they're able (with some exceptions). They may not understand them, but reading them will help them understand.

As adults, oughtn't we to give those books a second look?

I conclude that reading through the lense of life experience is a recovery of missed joys.

What have you been re-reading?

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A thousand apologies to the poor soul who used google blog search to find "place of jokes, fun" and ended up here.

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Monday, August 06, 2007

Fair Play

I am not a feminist in the modern sense of the word, though I might say I am in the classic sense. "Equal pay for equal work," the right to life, liberty and vote. I have more in common with Susan B. Anthony and Eliazabeth Cady Stanton than Gloria Steinem does, but today we pro-life feminists are the red-headed step children of the movement.

Still, I am enough of a feminist to recognize a chauvinist.

According to Yahoo! sports, Danica Patrick, one of only four women ever to qualify for the Indy 500, "ripped the likable Brit [Dan Wheldon] for causing a major crash after Sunday's Firestone Indy 400."

Apparently there was an "initial confrontation after the Milwaukee race on June 3. That's when Patrick was attempting to pass Wheldon in the first turn and believes the 2005 IndyCar champion cut her off and sent her off the track.

Patrick had one of the fastest cars in the race at that point and was able to continue, but she believed at that time Wheldon cost her a chance at victory. She charged at Wheldon on pit lane after the race and even grabbed his arm, which led Wheldon to refer to her as a yapping little dog biting at his ankles. "

That is the kind of insult that a man would aim only at a woman. I am not suggesting Wheldon would never insult a man, but he would not refer to them as yapping little dogs. The implication is that Patrick is a nuisance, someone not to be taken seriously.

That is patronizing. That is sexism.

See what else Patrick has had to put up with.

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Thursday, August 02, 2007

You're Mean and I Don't Know Why

A growing pet peeve, in fact, an exponentially growing pet peeve: deleting or refusing to post other people's comments on your blog.

Blogging creates dialogue. If you don't want comments, don't make the option available. Unless a person is being profane, obscene or cruel,* I fail to see why you won't post their innocuous little blethers. Deleting them once they're published is babyish.

I have no time for you.

*Read the girlfriday policy here.


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Wednesday, August 01, 2007

"As if Thy Blessings had Spare Days"

A few months ago, I was tagged by Hob at White Noise and Ms. Lane at Lois E. Lane for a meme. Or I was memed. Or tag-memed. Or a meme tagged me.

I never responded, but I meant to.

Then, Monday I stumbled across this blog by way of this one (so glad they're blogging again) and the author had a post, "Sweetness is...", where she lists five things she is thankful for. Among them, thumbs.

Boy do I take my thumbs for granted.

It put me in mind that it is time to write down some of the things I have been thanking God for as well as those things that I only sometimes remember I am thankful for. And let this be my reply to my taggers.

1. Gardens. They were God's idea, it occured to me while I pulled the weeds and picked the squash. Magical, clever little things full of the stuff we dust off our feet, sucking in the sunlight and air and water and nutrients and giving life to dead things.

2. Husbands. Magnificent in shorts, cap and batting gloves. And day after day they carry on, taking their responsibility as provider so seriously, carrying that burden with such thoughtful care. And hugging you. Always hugging you though it must get tiresome after the fiftieth time. Handy little buggers, too.

3. Chicken. Without it, I would starve.

4. Private bathrooms. I've relieved myself (oh! I'm so sorry!) in pretty strange places. Like France. You take a door, a seat, and a roll of toilet paper for granted until you don't have them.

5. Handwritten things. My grandma writes a note on the inside cover of every book she gives. My mom dashes off little notes when she sends care packages. My sister in law mails something handwritten for every occasion. "Happy Fall" comes to mind. Her son's handwriting is remarkably indiscernible. Another sister painstakingly thanks me for every gift, every year, no exceptions. I save them all.


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