Have you been worried about the 700 BILLION DOLLARS that taxpayers will be shelling out in order to cover the mortgage crisis?? Worried we'll never see that money again? Worried that things won't change! Well, worry no more! Joe's got a plan...
I've loved her novels and I enjoy her posts. This one is a perfect preamble to the changes that are to come if we allow them...
In a week, we have a chance to leave this world behind. If we look at
our two candidates, the differences between them are stark. John
McCain, who was raised by and accepts the authoritarian model, is
evidently never at peace. He is hot-headed, erratic, and has been
remarkably cruel. He claims to have principles, but his principles
change every time he loses his cool. The more he is pushed, the more it
becomes evident that he lives by his own selfish desires -- for money,
for power, for women. He's is a classic avoider, who can't even answer
the simplest question -- if something "unpleasant" comes up, he changes
the subject. Barack Obama rarely changes the subject, because he is
fully capable of looking at an issue and considering it. He seems to
have been reared in a non-authoritarian household, by a loving mother
and loving grandparents. He thinks that the world is a rational place
that can be understood and modified. His own family seems happy and
loving. Right wingers think he is shallow, but he isn't shallow -- he's
well-adjusted. And we've had two whole years to poke him and prod him
and discover this. Obama has grown through campaigning because he has
learned from it. McCain gets ever smaller and more weird as he
campaigns because he doesn't understand what is happening to him. When
we choose between these two men, we are choosing between two worlds...
With the last week of campaign insanity upon us, I am looking forward to the end. I don't want to see one more commercial. I don't want to see one more "toll free number" or "unknown caller" show up on my Caller ID. I want some peace and quiet to come back into my life, however, there is one area where I'm not sure I want that and that is when I vote.
Grizzled has been telling me I should cast my vote early. He did, but he's an election judge and expects to be extra busy that day. He's been warning me of long lines and huge crowds. The news has been saying the same. While I don't necessarily like to waste time standing in line, I don't feel that this time will be a waste and part of me truly wants to be amidst the throng of people who are also coming out to cast a vote for a different path.
I can be very cynical, but I am feeling ever so slightly hopeful. I know there are those of you who say Obama is more of the same, just in a different package. I'm sorry, but I have to believe that's not true. I have to hope there is at least a shred that is different. I have to hope that with a possible majority in the House and Senate and a possible President with the same views, we might actually be able to make some changes. We might even be able to be in on the changes instead of being fed a line of crap and told it's for our own good.
I can hope. I do hope. I want to be fully immersed in the sea of hope and change on Election Day. I want to be present when the door closes on our nasty and shameful past 8 years and a new one opens to possibilities. I'm ready to stand in line, no matter how long it takes, and when I cast my vote, I'll probably be blubbering. I cry for people pulling over for an emergency vehicle, something they have to do, I'm sure I'll cry for this. They will be happy, hopeful tears though and not tears of frustration and anger.
Family Reading Night at my youngest lamblet's school has been a burr under my saddle since its creation back when the eldest lamblet went there. Do I love to read? Yes. Do I think reading is important? Yes. Do I support reading?? Yes, in many ways, so why on earth would a school function that supports reading bug me so much? It started waaaaay back when. I know, I should just let it go, but it still bugs me.
Way back when, long ago, back when the eldest lamblet was just a little scrunchle chunchle who loved to read, the PTA decided to add one more school function to their already bursting list of activities that encouraged you to leave your home at night and not spend quality time with your own family, within your own walls. The activities are called optional and yet there is always pressure to have 100% attendance. Family Reading Night was no different. Here's what you did, you went to the school, you sat in a circle with your family and you read while other families were reading within their own circles.
I can understand why you would encourage those who are not reading as a family to undertake this, but we were already doing that at home. We read all the time, together and alone. There is reading material oozing from our house so I felt no need to go to the school to prove we supported reading. I felt the fact that the lamblet was in accelerated reading proved she was supported in her reading endeavors. If anything, we probably needed to be reading less. Now if they had a "Family Scrub Your Baseboards Night", I might be able to benefit from that. As for the reading night, I felt fine not going and just spending a wonderful night together in our home.
That was the wrong answer. At the bus stop the day after FRN, I had numerous mothers asking me why we weren't there! Was something wrong?! Had something happened? No, I told them, we just chose to stay home, it was our one night that week that was not busy and I thought we needed that more.
"DON'T YOU SUPPORT READING!?!?" one of them cried. She was aghast that I wouldn't go to something so important. I told her I most definitely supported reading, I did every single day as did Grizzled. I found it ironic that the same woman who was questioning my support of reading was the same one who told me I'd have much more room in my home if I just got rid of all of those stupid books. This was the same women who introduced Grizzled and me at a party as people who actually read daily newspapers. But apparently she had forgotten and all of that didn't matter if my family wasn't reading where no one could see it. If it didn't happen at school, it didn't count.
It's been many years since that happened and we have not been to one FRN event. In my defense, it still happens on the one night where none of us has anything else going on. I can't see dragging us out of the house to prove we read when I know we read. On top of that, my kids spend a lot of time at school already and could probably use a little extra time just being with their family. I don't think everything has to be scheduled to the nth degree although I might go to a scheduled "Don't Schedule Everything Night"...
I support reading. I just don't support those extra-curricular activities that are optional until you don't go...
My sister sent me this video last week. I've watched it at least a dozen times. I know the world is facing serious problems and that we are all expected to be so very, very serious and yet I can't help but feel that more creative play is the answer.
I was tagged by the meme gnome. I wasn't going to do it. It's really long... did I mention how LONG it was?!?! But I don't have any other post ideas right now and don't really have the time to fluff up any old ideas so I'm going to answer the questions, however, I am not going to tag anyone else. Tag yourselves should you feel like it or put your own answers in the comments or just ignore, like I probably should have.
What is your favorite thing to wear? A really old t-shirt that is softer than soft.
Last meal you had at a restaurant: Duck
Name one thing that scares you: Large, hairy, evil, sinister spiders... and the current administration.
Who was the last person in your bed? Me
What were you doing at 7:00am? Drinking coffee.
person you hugged? Youngest lamblet.
Does anyone you know want to date you? I have no idea. I'm not in the dating pool, so I would assume, no.
When was your last encounter with the police? I called them last weekend. A mentally challenged boy showed up at our house and was not sure where his home was. We got him back home.
Have you ever driven without a license? Yes... I spaced renewing it after the eldest lamblet was born and before I knew it, a year had passed. Oops.
What time of the day is it? Afternoon. My least favorite time of day.
Who/What made you angry today? The news.
you want anyone? What?? Well hell yes, I'm not dead.
Do you like birds? Yes, but I don't want them... unless it's for dinner.
Do you download music? Sometimes.
Do you care if your socks are dirty? I hate socks and rarely wear them so the chances of me having gone through all cleans ones is slim.
Opinion of Chinese symbol tattoos? Don't care. If you want them, have at it.
are you doing tonight? Finishing painting the basement.
Do you like to cuddle? Sure.
Do you love anyone? Many people.
Whose bed did you sleep in last night? Mine
Have you ever bungee jumped? No, and I wouldn't, but I would skydive.
Have you ever gone whitewater rafting? NO!
anyone ten years older than you ever hit on you? More times than I care to remember!! I don't know why, but older men have always been drawn to me. I'm guessing I either come across as needing to be saved or am mature beyond my years.
How many pets do you have? 3, plus a smattering of fish.
Have you met a real redneck? Yes.
How is the weather right now? Cool, gray and pouring.
What are you listening to right now? The furnace.
What was the last movie you watched? Beverly Hills Chihuahua. Grizzled swore it was the last kids' movie he'd go see.
Do you wear contacts? Not in many, many years.
Where was the last place you went besides your house? The train station.
are you wearing? Jeans, t-shirt, glasses, a smirk, a watch, a couple rings, earrings, underthangs, shoes and NO SOCKS!
What's one thing you've learned this year? What backer rod is.
do you usually order from Starbucks? I worked at a Starbucks and frankly, although I love coffee, the smell gives me flashbacks so I usually don't go to them.
Ever had someone sing to you? Aside from birthdays and my kids? Yes, a couple of times that I can remember. One time it really creeped me out. The other time, I wanted to jump the person.
Have you ever fired a gun: Yes, a rifle.
Are you missing someone? Yes.
Favorite TV show? I'm not sure right now.
What do you have an obsession with? Any number of things.
Has anyone ever said you looked like a celeb? I usually hear that I sound like someone.
The eldest lamblet was in her middle school variety show last week. It was fun to watch. Kids who are in middle school are definitely showing strong clues of the adults they will become. They've discovered talents and have somewhat reined them in. There was a lot of promise in that show no matter how rough some of the skits. There was also a lot of genuine applause.
My favorite skit would have to be my lamblet's of course. She did a tap number with her best friend. She smiled, she moved with ease. She's all legs and arms which is perfect for tap. It was a pleasure to watch. I also really enjoyed the girl who played a Stevie Ray Vaughn's "Pride and Joy". She did it justice even as the school mascot was hamming it up around her.
The horn section on "Sweet Home Chicago" needed some work, but the guitar player saved them. He was a pleasure to listen to. The lead singer had promise, or so I thought. When he belted out his first line I thought maybe I was listening to a young Lou Reed or Robbie Roberston, but alas, he was merely ripping his vocal chords to shreds, attempting to sing lower and gruffer than his hormones would allow him. I was tempted to lend him some of mine.
Viewing all of this talent and exuberance had my youngest lamblet thinking she might try out for her school's variety show. She was thinking she might play a song on her guitar since her father had taught her a few over the past couple of months. I thought that sounded like a good idea. I asked her which one she'd play and she said the last one she had learned. I was trying to remember what it was since I had heard any number of songs coming from the 3 people who play the guitar off and on.
I ran down the list of the most-frequently heard tunes and asked her if it was any of them. She wasn't sure... she couldn't really remember the name, but she said she'd play it for me. Off she went to the other room. I was half-listening and half-working on something else when the strumming worked its way into my brain and the lyrics automatically started coming out of my mouth.
"EVE OF DESTRUCTION"!?!? "Is your father teaching you "EVE OF DESTRUCTION"!?!?" Yes, that was it. She said she didn't know all of the lyrics, but figured she could just play the tune. I had to say, no. Actually, I think I screamed it. There would be no 3rd grade rendition of "Eve of Destruction" at the elementary school variety show, lyrics or not. I don't care how timely the song is again. We'd barely gotten away by the skin of our teeth when our eldest lamblet played, "Dead Flowers" for her 3rd grade show... again, with her promising to NOT SING the lyrics she had heard her father sing so many times. And although "Dead Flowers" is not necessarily a happy title, I'm guessing it raised fewer eyebrows than "Eve of Destruction" would... We'd be getting a call from DCFS and would have our PTA cards revoked. The latter part might not be that bad.
But no... there will be no "Eve of Destruction" publicly played by a sweet-faced lamblet. If the lyrics came that easily to my cobwebbed memory, I'm pretty sure enough other people would realize what see was playing.
We had a glorious weekend weather-wise. It was sunny and warm, but I noticed that few trees had much color and then this morning, I looked out my bedroom window and there it was... the familiar glowing reds and corals on our maple. I then looked at our fire bush. It's suddenly splotched all over with a screaming red. The small oak in the front? Gold and dry. The change came overnight.
I love autumn. It's my favorite season and yet this year, the undeniable signs that it is here, make my chest ache. I also love winter, but last year's was particularly hard. It was unending and unyielding. It was a Giants in the Earth winter that just battered your soul. I think my cringing at autumn's colorful announcement of its presence is akin to being once bitten, twice shy. I felt bitten by last winter and know where this autumn is going to end up.
There are days when I wish I didn't feel things. I've always felt things, for better or worse, I've always felt them too much. This weekend, when receiving a particular piece of unexpected news, I felt it in my stomach and then it worked its way into my chest, slowly it crawled up to my soon-to-be-sore jaw muscles. I got angry with Grizzled, Grizzled who was reacting to the news with his usual, "Well, this is how you deal with this. This is what you do." I snapped at him and asked him why everything was so methodical for him. He turned to me and asked me why everything had to be emotional.
It just is.
I can be very calm and methodical when I need to be. I can keep my head while those about me are losing theirs and yet, deep down... deep in the pit of my stomach or in the walls of my chest, I'm feeling it. I'm feeling every ounce of it.
This morning autumn has announced its presence and surefire progression, a progression that will no doubt lead to winter. While my eyes were once again amazed at the beauty, my stomach clenched and my body recoiled.