December 31, 2004

Happy New Year

Just wanted to wish you all a very happy New Year.

Enjoy the evening and I'll see ya soon.

Posted by Kathy at 05:42 PM | Comments (0)

Amateur's Night

I don't generally do public service announcements.

I might ask you to consider donating money to a charitable cause, but I understand if you choose not to do so. I try to be a live and let live type of gal.

Today, however, is not one of those days when I'm going to live and let live. I will fully expect you to do what I say, or you will suffer my wrath. Which, along with the consequences of your actions, will make for one hell of a one-two punch.

Tonight is New Year's Eve. The night when there is actually something to celebrate at midnight. This is also night when people who don't normally frequent parties and bars go out and binge like a frat boy performing a keg stand.

They hire babysitters or corrall family members to look after their wee ones. They made dinner reservations months ago. They look forward to parties they've been invited to, wondering what sort of liquor they should take as a host present. They get worked up over the prospect of a night out, sans children, sans responsibility, sans any sort of sense they usually let run their lives. This is the night they let loose.

In other words, tonight, as the husband so aptly phrases it, is Amateur's Night.

And it is the night when he, as a former professional drunk driver with the resume to prove it, absolutely refuses to go out.

Ever since I started this blog I have danced around the edges of the husband's woes. A wee bit of disclosure here, a wee bit there. But never have I unloaded the whole story. No more. To get you to do what I want, full disclosure is necessary.

I will aim for brevity. I don't think it's possible, though.

The husband:

  • Is an alcoholic. He disclosed this to me in the early stages of our relationship, but as I have no alcoholics in my immediate family and never had anything to do with alcoholics previously, I had no idea what this entailed.
  • Has been convicted of (counting on fingers) seven counts of drunk driving since he was twenty-one. Four were in Iowa. The other three were here in Minnesota. Six of the seven were misdemeanors. Lucky number seven was a felony. This illustrious record does not include all the times he was charged for driving without a license, speeding, reckless driving, etc. Those are peanuts compared to a DWI.

    I also feel obliged to point out that---ahem---the husband never killed anyone. He never rammed his car into a tree. He never ran a busload of nuns off the road or killed a small, wide-eyed child who was standing in the middle of the road, clutching her teddy bear tightly to her bosom whilst looking terrified. I point this out to you because I know what some of you are thinking, and as such I also know that the worst possible scenarios are running through your mind. I know this. I don't blame you for it. I would just ask you to open your mind and realize that not everyone who is convicted of drunk driving is a murderer. The worst the husband ever did when he was behind the wheel of a car whilst intoxicated was to run into a ditch.And that's it.

  • Has cost us a lot of money. To provide a conservative estimate of how much this problem has cost us financially over the course of our ten year marriage is a rough thing, but I would ballpark it somewhere around $100,000. That includes bail, fines, fees, lawyers, substance abuse evaluations, court ordered rehab, home monitoring equipment, work release housing (yes, kids, jail costs money), an automobile that was siezed by the county, etc. And there is a lot that could be included in that etc. but I think you get the gist.
  • Is still on probation from his felony DWI, which occurred in February 2003. After spending a few months working with his lawyer and the courts, he was sentenced to 60 days in Work Release, more than a year and a half on home monitoring and four years of probation. The practicalities of this meant that for two months I would go and pick him up from the work release facility in Plymouth (a far west suburb) bring him here to the house (where his office is) to work. At six-thirty each evening, I would race him back to the facility where he would spend the night. After his sixty days were up, he was released to home monitoring. This was at the end of July, 2003. From August 1st, 2003 to January 26, 2004 he was monitored remotely from our house. This is the proverbial ankle bracelet you hear so much about on TV. But, you say, August to January does not equal a year and a half. True. But there was a deal done in chambers that spared the husband the brunt of this because he wasn't a pain in the ass prisoner. I simply cannot remember all the myriad legal details. The husband is now on probation. Until the year 2008. If he goofs at any point during this period of time, all time served on this offense is wiped away: he will go to the state penitentiary for four years of hard time. No be's, by's or but's about it.

    He currently meets with his probation officer every other week. He has been in treatment since February 2003 and is doing very well. He hasn't had a drink since that night. More importantly, nor does he want one.

    This, to put it mildly, is good.

This has been my nightmare.

Yet, the nightmare is finally over with. I no longer wait up at night, waiting for him to come home, wondering if he's dead or if he's killed someone. I never have to receive another call from him from the jail, wondering if it would be too much trouble for me to arrange his bail. I no longer have to lie to family and friends about the extent of his problems because he asked it of me. We are no longer losing friends because they simply did not want to associate with someone who was so blindingly intent on destroying his life and the lives of those around him. I no longer have to wonder and worry and wait for him to finally realize he could not handle alcohol, and that there was no shame associated with sobriety. While there are challenges involved with his sobriety, in a very weird sort of way, it's nice having a new set of challenges to deal with, instead of the same 'ol, same 'ol.

While I fully realize that most people are not alcoholics. That most people are able to handle their liquor and are smart enough to avoid driving while drunk, there are quite a few of you out there who simply think you can handle it. That it's too much of a pain to have to go and retrieve your car from wherever tomorrow, so you're just going to risk it, because you're not that drunk.

If you are one of these people, know that you scare the professional drunk drivers, like the husband. They don't want to get out on the road with you because you are an unknown factor. You have no experience with this sort of thing. You have no idea of what your capabilities are. You will cruise down the road, high on life, and will not pay attention. To put it bluntly: you are uneducated in the risks you are taking when you get behind the wheel of your car and point it toward home.

Say what you will about the pot calling the kettle black. Given the circumstances, it's completely understandable that you would respond this way. But, you should at least know, that every single person who has been convicted of drunk driving once is terrified when they slide behind the wheel after they've had a drink. They may be legally sober---they might not be---but that's not really the issue here. Their potential level of incapacitation aside, they are at least aware of what they are risking and will be extra vigilant to make sure they don't get pulled over. They will watch their speed. They will open a window. They will turn off the radio. They will hug the line. You, the novice, will not be extra vigilant. You are oblivious to the risks. Hence you are unsafe, and God Willing, will be pulled over by a police officer.

This is where the real fun begins.

Providing you don't kill someone and get sent up for twenty-five to life, you, nonetheless, are laying out the welcome mat for the legal system, and are inviting them into your life. This is worse than having the IRS audit you. Trust me on this one. You do not want this because, when it comes to drunk driving, the legal system puts the IRS to shame. It wheedles its way into corners that you do not even know you have and have no way of defending because MADD has been so very successful in its lobbying efforts. Even though it's not widely advertised and varies from state to state, you will, most likely, lose your fourth amendment protection against unreasonable searches and siezures. You will be forced to run through legal hoops for months on end. You will bring down unhappiness upon your family. You will lose friends because you have proven yourself to be a flake. You will, most likely, not be able to drive anywhere for a year. The money it will cost you to extricate yourself from this mess is the absolute least of your woes.

The worst of it, as the the husband will tell you, is that you will lose your freedom. He's not talking specifically about probation or jail time or home monitoring, but rather all of it. He is not free to live his life the way he would like. While he might be done with what I consider to be the worst of it, he is not done with it entirely. The leash hasn't been removed, in other words. It's only been loosened. He has to apply to leave the state. A breathalyzer will be delivered to our home sometime this spring. It will be connected to our phone for a month and he will have to blow into it a minimum of three times a day. This seems ridiculous, considering he's not drinking anymore, but the state doesn't know that and, as this was a part of the deal he cut with the state, he must endure it one month a year, until his probation is up in 2008. We cannot move away from the state of Minnesota without transferring his probation to the state we would like to move to. He invited the legal system into our lives when he went out and had four martinis that night in February, 2003. And we will not be free of them until 2008.

And this is only a clear-cut date providing the legal system doesn't switch something up in the meanwhile. Which is entirely possible.

I told you up at the top of this screed that I wanted you to do something. Well, as you might have sussed, what I want you to do tonight is not drive while drunk. Even if you've only had a few glasses of wine, or a single beer, just don't drive. Just don't do it.

I would ask you to make a plan beforehand, while your judgment is unclouded by booze, and to stick to it. If that means calling a friend in the middle of the night and rousing them out of a sound sleep, do it. If that means spending the rest of the afternoon calling every car service in town to see if they have an available limo for tonight, do it. If that means spending time on a cold corner, waiting for a cab to drive by, do it.

Keep your freedom. Keep the legal system out of your life. Save yourself from MADD impact panels. You have the power to save yourself a world of hurt, but more importantly, save the ones you love the most from having this world of hurt affect them.

Because while you will have to live through the shame and bother of it all, they will have to live through it, too, but they will have done nothing to deserve it.

Posted by Kathy at 01:48 PM | Comments (2)

December 30, 2004

Spare Us!

Just give the goldigging bitch the money, you dork.

If Anna-Nicole has money, she won't have to work for a living. She will be absent from our lives and we won't have to deal with her any more than we already do, ya dig?

Take one for the team. I'm sure humanity will thank you for your brave sacrifice.

Posted by Kathy at 08:30 PM | Comments (2)

Freedom Earned

The Great German poet, Goethe, who also lived through a crisis of freedom, said to his generation: "What you have inherited from your fathers, earn over again for yourselves or it will not be yours." We inherited freedom. We seem unaware that freedom has to be remade and re-earned in each generation of man.

---Adlai Stevenson

We support you.

Posted by Kathy at 05:50 PM | Comments (0)

Yet Another Tedious Wodehouse Update

Ok, Robbo.

Just picked up Right Ho, Jeeves from el biblioteca de Hennepin County.

We shall see what we shall see.

Posted by Kathy at 02:13 PM | Comments (1)

Well, Crap

Just got a phone call from Tweedledumb, our apartment manager, who had some news to share.


The Cake Eater Duplex will be going up on the market after the first of the year.

Oh, Joy!

Apparently, the Great White Hunter landlord has had it with renting properties out and wants done with all of this nonsense of pesky tenants asking him to do stuff. All of his properties are going up for sale, and I think he has five or six in the nearby vicinity.


Tweedledumb told me not to worry; that whomever buys this place has to honor our lease. Well, I'm not in full-on fret mode...yet. The problem is, if the house sells quickly, we're screwed because our lease is up at the end of February. Which would be a perfect situation for the new owner: they'd either be able to up the rent to an insane level or they'd be able to tell us, hey, we're not going to renew your lease because we want someone new---which is completely within their rights once GWH has sold the place. While I'm not discounting the theory that tenants who are already firmly ensconced and who pay their rent on time have something of value to offer these new potential owners, you just never know what people want to do. Never mind that a new landlord adds all sorts of potentially uncomfortable new variables we've never had to deal with in the past simply because our landlord ignores us (except on the first of the month). That is absolutely the least of our problems right now.

All, however is not lost. We have a few items in our favor:

1. GWH is asking an extorbitant sum for the building. And when I mean extorbitant, I mean obscenely extorbitant. As in, I think a snowball has a better chance of surviving hell than he has of getting his asking price. And knowing the man and his money habits, he's not going to settle for what I think someone would be willing pay for this place, which is about half of what he's asking. He may want out of the slumloard racket, but he's not going to take less than he thinks this place is worth and if that means keeping it on the market for years, he'll do it.

Mr. H., who is now Mr. Real Estate, has said that the market in town has gone from being a seller's market to a buyer's. Let's hope he's right and that GWH has put the building up for sale at the wrong time.

2. The place is a wreck. And I mean that. A wreck. There is mold in the basement. (Our former neighbors from downstairs were, at one time, considering suing GWH because their son's doctor swore the mold was the reason their son contracted Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma.) The sewer line to the street needs to be completely redone because it's tangled in tree roots. (If I really wanted to screw GWH over, well, I could also tell the new owner that the sewer line backed up in the basement a few years ago and GWH wouldn't pay to have the place cleaned professionally. Because he didn't. A mop and a bucket was adequate enough for his purposes.) The building is not plumb, meaning the foundation is shoddy. Tweedledumb, when tearing out the old concrete in our little parking spot, hit the garage with the Bobcat he was driving and tore out a good chunk of the garage foundation. How the garage is still standing, I don't know. Have no clue, but that thing is going to fall down sooner rather than later, because there also happens to be a leak in the garage roof (which used to double as our deck) and it's rotting from the inside out.

If this place passes inspection, I'll be really surprised.

But the place has a new roof. It also has a fresh coat of insulation in the attic. And two years ago GWH spent a boatload of cash putting in new furnaces, new windows and new carpeting, but these were completely superficial repairs. (He would have left the old boiler in if he hadn't been mandated by law to replace it. We have laws here in Minnesota about working furnaces.) He hasn't been forced to upgrade the place seriously because he's owned this building for thirty some odd years. Meaning, he's grandfathered in on certain codes. This is the reason he hasn't authorized Tweedledumb to fix the garage. It would have to be torn down and started over from scratch. This would be a problem for the new onwer because garages have to be bigger nowadays and there's no way they could put a new garage, with lots of space, on the current lot because it's too small for it to fit.

This could be good for us. The building would have to be brought up to code, which would be pricey for whomever bought it. On top of the purchase price, I don't think there would be many takers.

Of course, all of this is moot if someone just decides they want to buy the lot because of the established trees, raze the house and start over. Which is a popular option around here. There was some sort of Cake Eater City legislation pending about our neighborhood in particular where they were trying to outlaw that sort of behavior, but I don't know if it went through or not. I suppose I'll have to go and find out.

Anyway, keep your fingers crossed for us, kids. All I want right now is to make it through to the end of January without an offer on this place. I just need the new lease to make its way here from GWH so we can sign it and Fed Ex it back. Because...

I really don't want to move!

Posted by Kathy at 12:38 PM | Comments (3)

December 29, 2004

Random Question(s) of the Day

What the fuck is a duchy, and why would you want to pass it on the left hand side?

Is passing it on the left hand side integral?

Or could you, conceivably, pass it on the right hand side without serious consequences being handed down?

Posted by Kathy at 08:13 PM | Comments (1)

I'm Happy

Really and truly happy that I let my subscription to the Star Tribune lapse.

I don't want to be held responsible for paying this guy's salary. Read the whole thing. If for no other reason than the novelty of having your eyebrows hit your hairline.

I find it absolutely breathtaking that a columnist of Coleman's (supposed) lofty reputation gets to vent his spleen in such an incontinent way across the Strib's Metro section. Think about it. If it had been a conservative columnist (like the Strib would employ one of those, but work with me here) who'd ragged on Kos like Coleman ragged on Powerline, I bet that column would have been in the bin before the ink was dry.

Where were the freakin' editors? Probably giggling and snorting with glee over the conference room table, not realizing that it's probably not a good idea to piss these guys off. After all, what's a law degree for if not to provide a really good reason to sue the pants off a newspaper for libel. (further footnote can be found here) I compliment the Powerline guys for handling this in such a classy way. I don't know that if I were baselessly accused of the same things that I'd be able to hold my temper.

Although, I do kind of wish they'd get ticked off and do something to hold Coleman accountable. And I think I have an idea of how to do that, provided I may be so bold. When I first moved to the Twin Cities, I worked for a large law firm downtown. I had flexible hours and late one night, I was walking back from the office to my car and had to pass by the Lutheran Brotherhood building. I was surprised to see five separate camera banks set up on the sidewalks outside the building in what was a deserted downtown. I wondered what was going on, and hurried home to catch the news.

Turns out that before I'd even moved here, WCCO-TV---the local CBS affiliate---had produced a series of investigative reports about Northwest Airlines safety practices. NWA had thought these reports painted a distorted picture and had sued. Instead of taking it through the worst of the court system, the case wound up at the Minnesota News Council. The News Council takes complaints from ordinary citizens who feel wronged by the press. They hold hearings and decide whether or not the news organization is at fault. While essentially a shortcut around libel laws it nonetheless lets displeasure with a media outlet be known. In the NWA case, while financial damages were now off the table, some big journalistic poobahs were rolled out to rule on what were, effectively, purposefully distorted camera shots in the promos that gave the wrong impression to the viewer. If this sounds familiar it's probably because Mike Wallace flew in for the hearing and reported on it for 60 Minutes. While WCCO was found to be less than honest in its reporting and the station did win an Emmy for the series, WCCO's golden reputation was tarnished nonetheless.

It would be nice to see the same thing happen to Coleman. If for no other reason than he would be forced to retract his statements or at the very least be held accountable for them.

I hope they file a complaint.

Posted by Kathy at 04:06 PM | Comments (0)

Jerry Orbach RIP

Jerry Orbach has died of prostate cancer at age 69.

I enjoyed his work on Law and Order. Lennie Briscoe was quite a character and Orbach made the most of him. Given Orbach's dramatic chops, it was quite a surprise to find out, years after the fact, that he provided the voice for a candlestick named Lumiere in Beauty and the Beast, and, more importantly, that he'd been a big star on Broadway for years.

Mr. Orbach, it appears from my desk in Minneapolis, where we don't get Broadway shows all that often (and when we do, well, Sebastian Bach is in them), was truly an entertainer, in the broadest sense of the word. We don't get too many of those nowadays, hence it's very sad that he's passed on.

My sincere condolences to his family and friends.

{For more: Fausta}

Posted by Kathy at 02:24 PM | Comments (1)

Wobbling Weebles


{...}Richard Gross, a geophysicist with NASA (news - web sites)'s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California, theorized that a shift of mass toward the Earth's center during the quake on Sunday caused the planet to spin 3 microseconds, or one millionth of a second, faster and to tilt about an inch (2.5 cm) on its axis.

When one huge tectonic plate beneath the Indian Ocean was forced below the edge of another "it had the effect of making the Earth more compact and spinning faster," Gross said.

Gross said changes predicted by his model probably are too minuscule to be detected by a global positioning satellite network that routinely measures changes in Earth's spin, but said the data may reveal a slight wobble.

The Earth's poles travel a circular path that normally varies by about 33 feet, so an added wobble of an inch (2.5 cm) is unlikely to cause long-term effects, he said.


Posted by Kathy at 10:06 AM | Comments (3)

And the Lord God Decreed...

...the Clones should win the Independence Bowl this fine, fine evening.


And you wanna know what makes our win even more satisfying?

The college team I grew up rooting for, but whose school I wouldn't even think of attending, The Nebraska Cornhuskers didn't even get invited to a bowl game this year. What's even funnier is that when they played in the Independence Bowl two years ago they lost. Before the game, everyone in the state was ashamed that their beloved Huskers were playing at such a lame bowl in the first place. Then to lose that game... weeeel.

This year, the UNL AD fired Frank Solich because (and I paraphrase bady) Nebraska Football wasn't mediocre. Solich, in his opinion, was mediocre, hence worth firing. Solich had much to overcome when Osborne left and was, in my humble opinion, remodeling the football program into one that would serve the school well in the years to come. More speed. More passing. That sort of thing. This is no longer the Big 8, but rather the Big XII---with different schools who had different ways of playing the game. The Blackshirts can only do so much: you must have an actual offense that doesn't revolve solely around that dolt Eric Crouch. An I-formation offense is outdated these days. Solich knew this, recruited differently and arranged the program around his ideas--and was shitcanned for his trouble. It was taking too much time. They needed to win!

Ever since they won back-to-back National Championships, Nebraska fans have morphed from humble fans who simply wanted their team to win to the greediest and most demanding fans in college football. Excepting the southern schools, of course.

Like I wrote in the "about me" thingy over on the side, I have a love/hate thing going with Husker football. I was a fan for many years for the simple fact there is nothing else worth rooting for in Nebraska other than the Huskers. That's just who you root for and you get used to it over the span of your young life. Besides it was fun being a Husker fan. You got to bitch about Osborne never passing on a first down. You got to whine and moan about Oklahoma and compare Barry Switzer to the anti-Christ. And it was very satisfying when they actually made it to the Orange Bowl to compete for the National Championship after so many years of being shut out by the AP Poll. Of course it sucked when pass interference wasn't called on Miami (FL) on a two-point conversion that would have allowed us to win, but hey...that's just a part of the game, eh?

While I adored the Huskers while I was growing up, and will still root for them today (providing they're not playing the Clones), it was nonetheless a tough transition when I started school at Iowa State. I went from rooting for the best team in the Big Eight to rooting for the worst. It was very confusing. "Losing? What's losing?" "Whaddya mean the field goal kicker blew it? He only had twenty yards to overcome? And the wind was at his back!" "How is it possible to fumble on the snap? Twice in two frickin' plays?" This says nothing of how I was treated---being a Nebraskan in Iowa. Some of it I brought on myself: I earned serious glares of contempt and wore a very red face when I was in the student stands at Ames and, not thinking, let the words, "Go Huskers!" slip out of my mouth during the Iowa State-Nebraska game. But most of it was undeserved. After all, if Iowa State wanted a winning football program, it was apparent to everyone and their red-headed-stepbrother that what was needed was a new coach. Walden had to be fired. He sucked. There was no getting around it. It wasn't my fault that the Athletic Department couldn't get their shit together in this respect and the Huskers kept beating them as a result.

But I survived, and when, in 1993, Iowa State finally beat the Huskers for the first time in God-only-knows how long, I cheered right along with my fellow Clones' fans. (I still regret not partaking in the festivities. Sigh. Where was I that weekend, you ask? In Omaha, of course.) And then the miracle happened: Walden was fired, and Iowa State finally started competing. Now it's, indeed, a ball game between the two schools. I will always root for the Clones, because it's my alma mater. Yet, like I wrote, I have a love/hate thing going with Nebraska football. I love Nebraska's program, the tradition, the willingness to shoot for the stars. Yet I hate how damn greedy everyone has become in Nebraska since they tasted success.

Of course I catch shit to this very day for having jumped ship. So does my sister, another Iowa State graduate. Our family gives us crap: our brothers in particular, which is ironic as only one of the four attended UNL and the most rabid fan in the lot graduated from Creighton. My Dad stays silent on the issue, but I know where his loyalties lie and it's not in Ames. Mom cheers on the Clones most of the time, only because she's Mom and no one dares to criticize her on her football picks other than my father. And we all know he's biased, so...

So, knowing all of this, can you honestly blame me for being very happy the Clones won this night? And that, for this season, completely put the Huskers in the shade? Nope. Revenge is sweet. It may have been a hard fought victory tonight, and the entire season for that matter. As I see it, Nebraska's greediness has been their downfall. As one who's been rooting for a struggling team for fifteen years and who has noted that said team did the work to get better, instead of simply expecting the best to be served to them on a silver platter, well, it's pretty darn sweet that the Clones topped off their season with a bowl win.

/chortles of glee.

Posted by Kathy at 12:17 AM | Comments (0)

December 28, 2004

The Right To Offend

Lionel Shriver in today's Opinion Journal:

{...}Freedom of speech that does not embrace the right to offend is a farce. The stipulation that you may say whatever you like so long as you don't hurt anyone's feelings canonizes the milquetoast homily, "If you can't say anything nice. . . ." Since rare is the sentiment that does not incense someone, rest assured that in that instance you don't say anything at all. The concept of religious "tolerance" seems to be warping apace these days, and we appear to forget that commonly one tolerates through gritted teeth. It is rapidly becoming accepted social cant that to "tolerate" other people's religions is to accord them respect. In fact, respect for one's beliefs is gradually achieving the status of a hallowed "human right."

I am under no obligation to respect your beliefs. Respect is earned; it is not an entitlement. I may regard creationists as plain wrong, which would make holding their beliefs in high regard nonsensical. In kind, if I proclaim on a street corner that a certain Japanese beetle in my back garden is the new Messiah, you are also within your rights to ridicule me as a fruitcake.

The fact that we have to be free to outrage one another is potentially in conflict with a law that soon will be put to the Commons that would add "incitement to religious hatred"--punishable by seven years in prison--to the equally dubious legislation already on the British books banning "incitement to racial hatred." Laws that prohibit incitement to illegal action seem defensible enough. But with this and similar "hate crime" legislation, are we not on the way to classifying hatred itself as a crime? And while we are at it, should we not then criminalize envy and narcissism for also being antisocial states of mind? Moreover, what is the difference between "incitement to hatred" and "incitement to fierce dislike"? Or "incitement to mockery"?

{...}Apparently contemporary "tolerance" does not merely allow others to practice whatever goofy or incomprehensible religion they like--and sometimes with a rolled eye--but surrounds any faith with a hands-off halo of sanctity, so that whatever is sacred to you must also be sacred to me. Disquietingly, this halo in Britain may be enshrined into law. Worse, today's exaggeratedly deferent brand of tolerance is driven by a darker force than mere let's-all-get-along multiculturalism, and that is fear. In the post-9/11 world, we are arriving at an unspoken understanding that zealots in our midst must not be offended, lest in their indignation they do something horrible.{...}

(my emphasis)

Can I get an "Amen"?

While I'm generally a believer in keeping one's mouth shut when one has nothing nice to say, Shriver's got a point that this inclination should not be legislated, but rather personally regulated. I find it incredibly interesting that, of all the places to experience the vast depths of turmoil due to religion, the English appear to have forgotten their history. One can only hope that this bill that's being presented to Commons will go down in a blaze of secularist glory.

After all, what would Henry VIII think of such rubbish legislation?

Posted by Kathy at 02:23 PM | Comments (0)

Go Clones!


My beloved Iowa State University Cyclones are playing in the Independence Bowl tonight. (ESPN at 5:30 CST)

I confidently predict they're going to beat the crap out of the University of Miami (Ohio).

Posted by Kathy at 01:47 PM | Comments (0)

Holy Cow

Susan Sontag, dead at age 71.

I'm not going to say anything nasty about this woman because I believe it's wrong to speak ill of the dead---particularly when they've just died, but... it too much to hope that Chomsky's on his last legs, too?

I'm an awful, awful person. I know this already.

Posted by Kathy at 01:21 PM | Comments (3)

Dodging and Weaving

Forbes seems to be a bit worried about RSS Feeds. (registration required)

{...}By Internet standards RSS is ancient, invented circa 1997, but it is just now catching on, in part because of the millions of blogs constantly generating new content and in part because of new RSS search services like that sort through the missives like an e-mail reader. is now monitoring more than 5 million RSS-enabled blogs. Yahoo's free MyYahoo service, revamped in September, offers a built-in RSS reader. Microsoft is tinkering with its own. Google is pushing a similar syndication technology called Atom. Forrester Research analyst Charlene Li guesses that 2 million people are reading RSS deliveries regularly. ( broadcasts 43 different feeds.)

You need a Web service or reader software to grab an RSS feed. Point one to a Web site and you're done. Much hype has swirled around RSS' presumed ability to allow blogs to subvert big media. That's a romantic presumption. The likelier disruption will come in areas such as classifieds, search and e-commerce. RSS lets big companies increase their now streams catalog updates to its Web resellers-while letting little guys into the game. LiveDeal, a new Ebay competitor, touts its use of RSS as its differentiating factor. Users don't have to keep coming back to its site to check for new items.

RSS-based searchers Technorati, Topix, Feedster and DayPop look for instantly updated material, thus providing a different slice of the Web than Google does, one based on freshness rather than relevancy. Down the road, online advertising might mutate into something wrapped around RSS streams-if fewer people surf news sites or use traditional search services. Feedster has already started incorporating sponsored links with its RSS headlines.{...}

Well, geez, Forbes. Maybe if I didn't have to register to read your content and then get nailed with three popups, I wouldn't be thinking about switching over to RSS. This, of course, doesn't mention my travails in having to find the small "skip ad" button on the full page ad you forced on me before I could register, or the annoying ad on the page which, without my consent, started playing some very loud chatter hocking Sybase's wares. But I'm not really bothered by the ads. I can deal with them. What does bother me is that I'm still using Internet Explorer (despite the husband's desperate pleas for me to switch to Mozilla), and as such, there are holes in my browser. Through these holes your advertisements tried to insert spyware onto my machine. Fortunately, I have Spybot running on my machine and it blocked the insertion of two data mining cookies. Malware bothers me greatly. And it is through sites like yours---ones with an overwhelming amount of advertising---that most people's machines become overloaded with data mining cookies, that not only invade their privacy in the name of market research, but also cause machines to crash and burn.

I opened myself up to all of this abuse because I wanted to link to one lousy article that I found interesting and that I'd originally read in the dead-tree edition of your magazine.

RSS skips right past all of this and gets to the good stuff. And you're worried about how it might affect e-commerce? Well, might I suggest if you dialed down your advertising to a state less resembling a forcefully inserted anal probe, perhaps you wouldn't have to be worried about how RSS feeds could screw with the current e-commerce model?

Posted by Kathy at 10:23 AM | Comments (2)

December 27, 2004

Tsunami Update

Michele has an exhaustive list of ways you can help.

While I'm sure these are all reputable organizations, who want to help, I prefer to link to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. They know what they are doing because, sadly, they've done it before and it's very likely that your money will go to helping those most in need and will get there quickly.

The infrastructure is in place---use it.

C'mon people. I realize Christmas was hard on everyone's budget, but we're talking about one of the worst natural disasters to strike in our lifetimes. The bodies are washing up on the beach faster than they can count them. That this earthquake affected some of the poorest people on the planet makes the situation worse than it already is.

Posted by Kathy at 04:00 PM | Comments (1)

Yet Another Wodehouse Update

Robert's on the verge of despair with my view of Ring for Jeeves.

The hallmark of the Bertie and Jeeves stories is the fact that they're told as first person narratives - as related by Bertie. (Ring for Jeeves and one short story are the sole exceptions.) The joy of the writing is the way in which Plum unfolds the plots in Bertie's particular jargon, which is a collection of half-remembered quotes from school, advertising jingles, news headlines, catch-phrases and slang, and also the way in which he manages to maintain Bertie's half-witted but sympathetic point of view. Jeeves, bless him, is a prop, not a character, whose chief function, aside from serving as the deus ex machina of the plot, is to provide a linguistic foil to Bertie's blather.

The other thing to bear in mind is that Wodehouse's work is light comedy fluff. Exquisitely crafted fluff, but fluff nonetheless, a kind of musical without the music. Searching too deeply for meaning or motive, or trying to judge any of the characters in real world terms, is the equivalent of poking holes in a souffle to find out what's inside. Poof!

(The business about the language, by the way, is why I dislike the Jeeves and Wooster tee-vee series so much. It is impossible to translate a written first person narrative to the screen, especially one in which the way the story is told is often funnier than the actual story itself.)

Have no fear, Robbo. I'm not giving up. I've requested that, in addition to the other novels, that The Code of the Woosters and Right Ho, Jeeves be delivered as well. I think a first-person narrative would serve to put Jeeves in the proper light and I look forward to hearing from Bertie. Hopefully I won't find these storylines to be as boring and predictable as Ring for Jeeves. Anyone who can craft prose as cleverly as Wodehouse surely cannot be lacking in the plot department all the blasted time.

At least, that would be my hope.

Nonetheless, I was curious to see if anyone else had blasphemed Wodehouse like myself. I'm always looking for like-minded people. Yet, while I came up short on the blasphemy (What? Am I the only one to think this way? Good Grief! My one original thought and it disses a much-beloved author? I'm going straight to hell!) what should I come across when I Googled? An article, written by the estimable Hugh Laurie, who played Bertie in the TV series (and who also plays this guy! He's everywhere! Aieeee!) and who, it appears, actually agrees with Robbo about the TV series:

{...}A man came to us - to me and to my comedy partner, Stephen Fry - with a proposition. He asked me if I would like to play Bertram W. Wooster in 23 hours of televised drama, opposite the internationally tall Fry in the role of Jeeves.

"Fiddle," one of us said. I forget which.

"Sticks," said the other. "Wodehouse on television? It's lunacy. A disaster in kit form. Get a grip, man."

The man, a television producer, pressed home his argument with skill and determination.

"All right," he said, shrugging on his coat. "I'll ask someone else."

"Whoa, hold up," said one of us, shooting a startled look at the other.

"Steady," said the other, returning the S. L. with top-spin.

There was a pause.

"You'll never get a cab in this weather," we said, in unison.

And so it was that, a few months later, I found myself slipping into a double-breasted suit in a Prince of Wales check while my colleague made himself at home inside an enormous bowler hat, and the two of us embarked on our separate disciplines. Him for the noiseless opening of decanters, me for the twirling of the whangee.

So the great P. G. was making his presence felt in my life once more. And I soon learnt that I still had much to learn. How to smoke plain cigarettes, how to drive a 1927 Aston Martin, how to mix a Martini with five parts water and one part water (for filming purposes only), how to attach a pair of spats in less than a day and a half, and so on.

But the thing that really worried us, that had us saying "crikey" for weeks on end, was this business of The Words. Let me give you an example. Bertie is leaving in a huff: " 'Tinkerty tonk,' I said, and I meant it to sting." I ask you: how is one to do justice of even the roughest sort to a line like that? How can any human actor, with his clumsily attached ears, and his irritating voice, and his completely misguided hair, hope to deliver a line as pure as that? It cannot be done. You begin with a diamond on the page, and you end up with a blob of Pritt, The Non-Sticky Sticky Stuff, on the screen.

Wodehouse on the page can be taken in the reader's own time; on the screen, the beautiful sentence often seems to whip by, like an attractive member of the opposite sex glimpsed from the back of a cab. You, as the viewer, try desperately to fix the image in your mind - but it is too late, because suddenly you're into a commercial break and someone is telling you how your home may be at risk if you eat the wrong breakast cereal.

Naturally, one hopes there were compensations in watching Wodehouse on the screen - pleasant scenery, amusing clothes, a particular actor's eyebrows - but it can never replicate the experience of reading him. If I may go slightly culinary for a moment: a dish of foie gras nestling on a bed of truffles, with a side-order of lobster and caviar may provide you with a wonderful sensation; but no matter how wonderful, you simply don't want to be spoon-fed the stuff by a perfect stranger. You need to hold the spoon, and decide for yourself when to wolf and when to nibble. {...}

While I'm a ways off from watching the TV series (Whenever something like this hits the small or silver screen, I like to have read the source material beforehand. This way I can slam it with an unholy glee if I find it lacking. Good fun all around!), I find it interesting that the man who played Bertie is enough of a Wodehouse fan that he doesn't think he did a good enough job, and, in his view, that no one ever could.

Posted by Kathy at 03:11 PM | Comments (0)


The husband really is a geek.

Posted by Kathy at 12:09 AM | Comments (0)

December 26, 2004

Since You Asked

Margi wants to know what everyone got for Christmas.


From the husband:

  • movie theater gift certificates

  • pastry brushes and a pair of whopper tongs for bbq-ing

  • a very nice watch

From Mom and Dad:

  • a very nice plaid wool blanket that I believe Mom made. Now if we only had football games to go to...

  • DVD's of The Godfather and The Princess Bride! YAY Mom!Thanks for resisting the urge to buy me a poncho! I hear it was near thing. Thank you! I love them. And I will get much more use out of them than I would a poncho.

From Mr. H.:

  • a Houdini wine opener so I can get to my Chardonnay that much quicker

From the In-Laws:

From the Brother-in-Law (my side):

  • a gorgeous antique broach, set with a big pink stone in the middle, and small pink and white stones around the outside. Lovely.

From the husband's sister's family:

  • The SNL edition of Trivial Pursuit

  • homemade ornaments from the kiddies

From Santa (or Jolly old St. Nick if you prefer) into my stocking, which I hung by the fire with care:

  • A Caribou Card for my Sunday morning gab fests with Mr. H.

  • An envelope of Ginger Milk bath salts! (See, kids, Santa really does read your blog!)

  • Cinnamon Hoof Mints

  • A big fat Vanity Fair with Ahhhhnuld and Maria on the cover

From my Godbaby:

  • a neato Christmas ornament he made himself, replete with school picture

From my sister, Christi, and her husband:

  • The 80's Trivia Game
  • . Oh yeah. This one sucks bigtime! We'll never play it. /sarcasm.

Reportedly, a very nice bottle of Chardonnay is winging its way here from Northern California as I write this, as well.

Everyone's generosity, as usual, is overwhelming and I am indeed a lucky, lucky girl.

Posted by Kathy at 11:35 PM | Comments (0)

Wodehouse Update

Previous entries can be found here and here.

Upon my request, the Hennepin County Library system delivered Ring for Jeeves to our local branch and I retrieved it before they shut down for the holiday. While I'm still reading this, and enjoying it tremendously, I wanted something a little frothier to read over the holiday. Of which I do rather a lot as we have no wee ones, who, like a full-powered, freshly bagged Hoover, can be something of a time sucker around this time of year. Or so I'm told.

I finished it last night and it was indeed frothy. Yet...

Well, if you're interested, take the Plum Plunge and read on after the jump.

I'm finding I have more questions than answers about Wodehouse's work.


This book left me with a not-unpleasant taste in my mouth, yet it certainly wasn't the most flavorful thing I've ever tasted. For as much as Wodehouse is heralded as the "funniest writer ever!" I certainly didn't fall off my chair at any of the hijinx in this particular novel. While I enjoyed finally being introduced to Jeeves, I'm up in the air about him as a human being. He may be a good and devoted servant, entirely unflappable, and one of the cleverest characters ever to grace the page, he was so above every other character in this novel that his talents seemed wasted on this lot of slackers. Finally, while I adored the language, the story the language was employed to tell was predictable. I certainly don't have any problem with formulaic novels, but this novel---and how do I write this politely?---bored me. I know. Heresy. But before you light the fire at my feet, know that it is possible for an author to make me green with envy with their prose and still bore me to tears with the story they're choosing to tell. Ask Don DeLillo about my reaction to his Underworld and I think he'll give you a clue.

Yet so many people love Wodehouse. They revere his work. They can't all be boring stories. It simply cannot be. I have a hard time believing that people would be obsessed with this man's work almost thirty-years after his death and would, essentially, be revering what are beautifully worded boring stories. While I found much to be adored in Ring for Jeeves the storyline wasn't included in their number. How to reconcile the two issues? It occurs to me that I must be missing something.

Or is the fact that Bertie is missing in this Jeeves adventure the problem?

The copy on the back of the books reads:

The only Jeeves story in which Bertie Wooster makes no appearance, involves Jeeves on secondment as butler and general factotum to William Belfry, ninth Earl of Rowcester (pronounced Roaster). Despite his impressive title, Bill Belfy is broke, which may explain why he and Jeeves have been working as Silver Ring bookies, disguised in false moustaches and loud check suits. All goes well until the terrifying Captain Brabazon-Biggar, big-game hunter, two fisted he-man and saloon-bar bore, lays successful bets on two outsiders, leaving the would-be bookies three thousand pounds down and on the run from their creditor. But now the incandescent Captain just happens to be the former flame of Rosalinda Spottsworth, a rich American widow to whom Bill is attempting to sell his crumbling stately home...

Robert, in his all-encompassing Wodehouse List, claims that Ring for Jeeves "...{P}roduces violent reactions from some people. It's kind of a hybrid Bertie and Jeeves story with one of Wodehouse's standard third-person romantic comedies. I personally have no problem with it, but I'm glad Plum only tried this formula once."

While I'm sure this isn't the best of the Jeeves catalogue, it's leaving me wondering about the rest. Is the rest different? What does Bertie add? Or is Bertie just like Bill and is completely uninteresting? (I know some will consider that last sentence to be slanderous, but hey, I'm a newbie. Cut me some slack.) My much beloved Hennepin County Library System hasn't coughed up the rest of the requested novels yet, so I'm unable to compare.

{Insert much pondering here}

Posted by Kathy at 06:11 PM | Comments (3)

The Spirit of Christmas

Just in case you happened to have missed all the action in the midst of fending off requests for more brandy-laced eggnog from relatives who refuse to leave, a massive earthquake, scoring a whopping 8.9 on the Richter scale, centered off the coast of Sumatra struck in the early morning hours on Sunday. This underwater earthquake triggered more than a few tsunamis, or tidal waves, which have completely swamped parts of Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia, and the Maldives---just to name a few of the places in South East Asia that were affected.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies has put out an appeal for aid. They're looking for upwards of $6M US to help with the immediate needs of these poor people.

Keep the Spirit of Christmas flowing. Go here and donate what you can, if you can. The estimates of the number of dead range from ten thousand to eleven thousand, three hundred. No one knows for sure and they're not likely to know until they can deal with the bare necessities of taking care of the living.

The butcher's bill is always the last to be presented in situations like these. Help out if you are able, so things can get back to a state that resembles normal and the people there will be able to bury their dead.

UPDATEThey're now saying over fourteen thousand dead. Let's face it, kids: that number is only going to keep rising. If you are able, help. They could really use it.

Posted by Kathy at 04:37 PM | Comments (0)

Reality Check

Whereas His Purpledom happens to live in Chanhassen---a suburb on the western fringes of the Twin Cities---hence we have easy access to His Purpleness and are able to give first-hand accounts of all the glory and wonder of His Purple Highness' nuttiness...

...We, the brown nosers of the Star Tribune's Arts and Entertainment staff proclaim Prince to be The Star Tribune's Artist of the Year.

Posted by Kathy at 02:53 PM | Comments (0)

December 24, 2004

And a Merry Christmas To All


Since there seems to be a meme going on, I thought I would participate in my usual way---meaning I'm the last one on the boat, and no one will really care about my presence so it was probably a big waste of time for me to try and catch it. Whatever.

In case you were wondering who the random boy was, know that is no boy. That is me. Circa age six or seven, so yes, that means mid-70's fashion hell. Fortunately, I've gotten past cringing everytime I see this picture and am finally able to take it for what it is: a kid sitting on a dodgy Mall Santa's lap. Boy haircut aside, I realize I was actually pretty cute. This was pre-nearsightedness, so no spectacles. That wouldn't last much longer, but it is nice to know there was a time when all I needed to see was my own set of eyes, because I sure as heck don't remember it. Note that I was behaving myself, too: my hands are folded, like a little lady---not that you could tell with the haircut---so I was apparently trying to get in good with the Big Man. But, Ai-yi-yi, are my teeth horrible or what? What a mess! Thank you, my parentals, for dumping what was probably thousands of dollars on my choppers and hundreds of hours spent in the car driving me to the orthodontist, the oral surgeon and the dentist. My teeth are now straight and I really do appreciate all that trouble you went to so I didn't have to live with that set of teeth for the rest of my life.

What's the point with all of this? Hell if I know. It's Christmas, Theo! It's a season of miracles! So be of good cheer and call me when you get to the seventh lock!


Sorry to channel Hans. I can't quite help myself around this time of year. Anyway...

Posting will be incredibly light over the next couple of days. You might get something. You might not. Check in just in case I decide to post a huge treatise, but I'm probably going to be drugged by egg nog, so don't count on it.

I have stuff to do around here and I best be getting on with it. Have a fantastic holiday. Eat well. Converse much. Hug and kiss often. And yes, that directive does include the cousin who cleans all the good booze out of your liquor cabinet. Drink just enough to make yourself pliable to the delights of the season, but no more than your usual maximum or those reindeer thumps on the roof will wake you out of deep sleep and into a horrible hangover. For Christmas Eve specifically, to quote myself from last Christmas, here's my recommendation:

Make the time tonight, between glasses of wine and obnoxious relatives, to go outside. Enjoy the peace and quiet, albeit temporary. Enjoy the cold for a few minutes. Breathe deeply and, for a brief moment, enjoy the icicles forming in your lungs. Shiver copiously. And then look up at the night sky, and if Rudolph's honker isn't too distracting, gaze at the stars.

Then, think of a young couple who on this night, roughly two thousand years ago, gave everything over to their faith and a God who demanded difficult things of them to fulfill His will. Know that they submitted without hesitation. Think of the gift they gave us this night and know that they gazed at the same stars you're looking at.

And know that the world is a wondrous place.

Have a very Merry Christmas, my beloved Cake Eater Readers.

Update: Rob, we need to talk about trackback, darlin'. That way, when you post adorable pictures of yourself and your wife on your blog, I'll know about it toute suite!

Wow. Has Movable Type spoiled me, or what?

Posted by Kathy at 11:38 AM | Comments (6)

December 23, 2004

Girly-Girl Post

Men, you can skip on by---unless you're looking for a present for the wife or girlfriend and would like a suggestion.

For my birthday last month, a friend gave me a girly-girl gift---bath salts in assorted flavors.

Now, I've always been more of a bubble girl, rather than a "Calgon, take me away!" sort. (Calgon made bath salts, in case you didn't want to touch that box in your mom's bathroom in case you thought it was tampons or something equally repulsive.) Bubbles keep certain body female body parts warm during the course of a bath, but also---and more importantly---keep the tub from getting grimy, too. I had a hard time seeing the purpose of bath salts other than to come out of the tub smelling like something that would probably make the husband gag. But, being the sort who will sit in a tub whenever she gets the chance, I gave them a whirl.

And you know what? I loved them. Mainly because they all lived up to their advertisements for softer, more moisturized skin, which is very important to me. (I'm a skin care junkie.) I particularly loved this one. While I felt ridiculous as I sat in a tub of milky water, I nonethless came to realize why Cleopatra bathed in asses milk: IT WORKS! Milk, for whatever reason, actually does condition your skin. I thought it was an old-wives tale, but I swear it works.

Give it a whirl if you're so inclined. It's a bit pricey---$6 for single bath. (I was checking to see if they sold it by the jar as the husband hasn't bought my Christmas present yet.) But it's so worth it.

Posted by Kathy at 10:28 PM | Comments (0)


It's currently zero degrees outside.

This will be the high for the day here in the Twin Cities.

It's positively amazing how fast dog poop becomes solid when it's this cold outside.

Posted by Kathy at 02:00 PM | Comments (4)

Gratuitous Christmas Music Posting*

In years previous, Minnesota Public Radio has presented The Nine Lessons and Carols---live---from King's College Chapel at Cambridge, on Christmas Eve morning. They're doing it again this year and I thought I'd give a heads-up in case anyone's interested.

If you've never heard this service before, it's a wonderful service full o' a variety of music. It's churchy---because it's a Christmas service. Duh---but if you truly love listening to choir music around the holidays, like me, this is the best you can get.

If you want to follow along, the program for this years service can be found here and you can pick up MPR's broadcast here. It begins at 9 a.m. (CST) tomorrow morning.

Happy listening.

*Sincere apologies and prostrations laid at the feet of Robert for swiping his title.

Posted by Kathy at 12:11 PM | Comments (0)

Huffin' and Puffin'

(click for larger image.)

Lest we forget...

Mount St. Helens: the little volcano that could.

{Image swiped from here. It's updated every four minutes or so, in case you're interested in when disaster will befall the Pacific Northwest again.)

Posted by Kathy at 10:44 AM | Comments (1)

December 22, 2004

The Height of Absurdity


Australian anti-piracy operatives are seeking a freeze on funds donated to the International Red Cross by a Vanuatu-based trust fund run by Sharman Networks - maker of Kazaa P2P software.

The recording industry is asking the Red Cross to voluntarily freeze the cash pending the outcome of an Australian court case brought against Sharman by several record companies. The suit alleges that Sharman "has directly and indirectly infringed on the recording companies' copyrights, violated Australian fair trade laws and conspired to harm the music industry", according to a Wired report.

Michael Speck of Australia’s Music Industry Piracy Investigations said: "We're preparing our approach to the International Red Cross. I believe this whole thing will come as a complete surprise to them, and we’re only approaching them to stop them disposing of any funds."

Speck expressed his hope that the Red Cross would co-operate, adding: "It would be incredibly disappointing if we had to sue them."{...}

"It would be incredibly disappointing if we had to sue them."

Holy Delusion, Batman!

What's amazing is that these people seemingly have no idea how bad something like this could make them look. As if we already didn't know they were greedy to begin with, this just makes them look like monsters. Asking the International Red Cross---while biased beyond belief against America and yet another Geneva-based bureaucracy steeped in corruption---does manage to do some good worldwide.

The Australian recording industry is literally taking food out of the mouths of babes to feed their bottom lines.

{Hat tip: Tech Dirt}

Posted by Kathy at 09:44 PM | Comments (0)

So, So Wrong

DirecTV has a few music channels way up in the 800's. Since the Cake Eater Kitchen has no radio, but does have a TV wired into the DirecTV box, I'm currently tuned into their "Songs of the Season."

The music, on the whole, hasn't been too bad today. A couple of forays into the catalogues of Neil Diamond and Wayne Newton, but nothing I couldn't block out.

Except for right now.

Celine Dion singing John Lennon's "Happy Christmas."

Oh, gag.

Posted by Kathy at 03:35 PM | Comments (0)

Johnnie Walker Green?

Yeah, but it's still a blended scotch, not a single malt.

Hence it's automatically inferior.

If you're going to blow some coin on whisky, well, might I recommend this? Or this? Or this?

Blended whiskies are the spirit equivalent of Wolfgang Puck's cooking: sometimes the fusion works, but most of the time it doesn't and ends up being a short-lived curiosity. Single malts are much better in that you get the flavor of the blended whiskies without the fuss of blending, and if you want another bottle, well, you'll be able to find it because only rarely do purveyors of fine Scottish single malts go belly up or discontinue products.

And if you do wind up buying a bottle of the Macallan 18-year-old, spring for another, stash it away and open it up twenty to thirty years later. It will be the best whisky experience you've ever had. Trust me on this one. It mellows gorgeously in the bottle. I am not a cheap scotch date because this was how I first came to appreciate whisky.

Posted by Kathy at 12:49 PM | Comments (4)

The Queen Bee's Knees: Update

Here is a summary of last night:

Sat on the sofa, knee elevated by means of big, plushy pillow with a bluish bag of manufactured gel which holds the cold well acting as the pickle in my knee sandwich.

I watched some TV, too. After struggling to stay awake during this stupid Nova special on string theory that the husband wanted to watch, we flipped over to FOX and caught the latest firing on that Richard Branson show whose title is too stupid for me to repeat here. I then perked up for House, because I like it. (Start watching this show, damnit. I don't want it cancelled! Do it for me, kids. Please?) Then I flipped around for a while (hours actually) and then read this.

And all this while I popped Advil.

And guess what? It's better!

The swelling has gone down, and while it's still achy and I'm limping, I believe I will, indeed, avoid another bout of physical therapy. Providing I don't go and do something incredibly stupid, like walking on ice. Keep your fingers crossed.

Thanks for all the well wishes and happy thoughts. I appreciate them.

Posted by Kathy at 10:53 AM | Comments (2)

Random Question For the Day

I would still like to know why, if Ghaddafi is the supreme ruler of Libya, is he only a measly colonel?

Shouldn't he be a general or a marshal?

Makes no sense. Then again, what about Ghaddafi does make sense?

Posted by Kathy at 10:34 AM | Comments (1)

The French Hostages

Fausta, who conveniently is able to watch France 2---and who can understand it, too---has the scoop on the release of French journalists Georges Malbrunot and Christian Chesnot, who have been held hostage in Iraq since this summer.

What's interesting is that there are some internal rumblings that appear to be variating from Chirac's "Diplomacy is Job One" line. They're doubting themselves, in other words, because the government had, as best as I can figure, nothing to do with the release.

I'll be interested to hear about their experiences when they finally speak out. If their release is just another product of Fallujah, well, I'll be expecting a big ol' "Merci bou coup!" from Blaque Jacques.

Posted by Kathy at 10:20 AM | Comments (1)


I've been waiting for someone to deliver a slap of the demoralizing sort upside the very fat head of James Wolcott.

Lileks delivers.

Be gone.

Posted by Kathy at 09:56 AM | Comments (0)

December 21, 2004

Christmas Presents

Ok, so here's what the Worldwide Fund For Nature says you shouldn't buy me for Christmas.

So, no ivory. No caviar. No Crocodile. No tiger rugs. No turtle shell products. No shatoosh (don't really need another shawl anyway. I like my pashmina just fine, thanks.) No coral. No cactus. And no energy inefficient electronics.

I'm ok with all of that. Honestly. No hassles here. I'm all about protecting the environment when it doesn't put me out too much.

But that doesn't mean you're off the hook yet, kids. Because these weren't on the list. Crocodile bad. Alligator Good.

I will be expecting a few pairs to be under the tree come Christmas Day. I particularly like the sandals, the halter slingbacks and the slides.

And all of them in black. Size 8 1/2 AA.

Posted by Kathy at 09:49 PM | Comments (1)

This Post Is Not Safe For Moms

Well, at least not my mom.

The rest of you can decide whether to look or not.

All I really have to say is tee hee.

Make sure to get in on the election year action and check out the patriotic donkey and elephant.

Ok, there's your cheap thrill for the day. Move along. Nothing to see here.

Posted by Kathy at 09:28 PM | Comments (1)

The Queen Bee's Knees

Joints suck.

Particularly those of the overly bendable type.

About fifteen years ago, when I was a freshman in college, my roommate and I had a bunk bed in our room in lieu of a loft. Lofts cost money and you had to find someplace to store them over the summer. Hence, being the cheapskates we both were, we opted for the free bunkbed the university provided. Of course, this bunkbed didn't come with a ladder, so everytime I wanted to get into my bed, I had to move my desk chair next to the bed and jump up from there. This involved making a fortunate grab of the mattress so I didn't slide back down again, but could rather pull myself up into bed.

I think you might be getting where I'm going with this. One night I was slightly intoxicated and returned to my room. After preparing myself for bed, I tried to perform this maneuver. Alas, however, the fortunate part of the grab wasn't so fortunate: I missed and landed in a completely wrong manner. After my roommate and her boyfriend expressed how ticked off they were about me waking them up with my fall, they then realized I needed help to get up into bed, and got me there. But not after locating some ice for me. My knee (and this was back in the days when I had really knobby knees) had swelled up to the size of a really oversized grapefruit and I was in pain.

The next day, at student health, they told me that I'd dislocated my kneecap, gave me a brace, a refreezable ice pack, and that I had to stay off of it for the next ten days and was to take lots of aspirin. It would heal up on its own, they said, it just took time. Ok. I did what they told me and I was fine.

Fast forward six years later: I'm trying to learn how to play tennis, am taking lessons at our health club and---again---land wrongly after volleying the ball back. (It was a great hit, too!) The knee swells again, I think it's a dislocation, again, and I'm right, but this time it's worse. The doctor confirms my impression, a week before I'm to be a bridesmaid in the sister-in-law's wedding---where I have to wear a floaty dress and high heels for hours on end. She puts me in an immobilizer, signs me up for physical therapy, and gives me a prescription for 800mg of Advil, four times a day. The immobilizer sucks, but it does work. I just have to make some adjustments. I have to learn how to operate the pedals of the car with my left foot. We live in a second floor apartment and stairs are a bitch when you cannot bend your knee, not to mention, I have my then-business to run and this involves many daily trips through the metal detector of the courthouse. The metal rods in the immobilizer set that fucker off more times than I can count.

After two months of physical therapy and then being bitched out by a succession of orthopedists who tell me that I haven't been doing my therapy (I DID!), it finally heals up. I'm done with it. Or so I think.

The husband still worries about me blowing it out again. He's afraid that one of these times I'm actually going to go where I haven't gone before and will shred the dreaded ACL. This is a valid concern of his: since the last time, I've had a couple of near misses, where I will land wrongly or slide on ice and I will feel the kneecap actually lift and slide off whatever is supposed to be holding it down. While this is disconcerting and painful, I haven't torqued my knee as badly as I did back then.

Why am I talking about all this? Well, I'm currently sitting at the dining room table, my right leg propped up with an ice pack on top of my right knee, and I'm praying for everything to go back to normal. Yep. That's right. I might have done it again. This is one of those things where it's not apparent right off the bat that I've goofed it good.

Yesterday, we had an extended period of freezing rain which left everything as slick as snot. Steps, sidewalks, name it, they're all covered in a particularly consistent coat of ice. Yesterday, I was very, very careful of walking around and was fine. Today, however, we got a light dusting of snow on top of the ice. This is when I get in trouble: the snow provides traction---most of the time. Then there's always the odd moment of slipping, where my heart will jump in my chest because I'm afraid I've torqued the knee again, and the happy moment after I realize I haven't done it. This morning, I was going over to the Doctor's and ML's residence, for my pooch-attendance shift. While they're slurping the fruit of the grape at lots of different locations across Northern California, all of their friends are pitching in to take care of Nessie. I'm bundled up, I manage to negotiate the steps and sidewalk and, feeling fairly confident about my walking abilities, step off the curb to cross the street and...whoops! There it went. The kneecap slid in that disconcerting, heart stopping manner. I walked forward, hopeful, and then breathed a sigh of was fine. I walk the dog, and as she needs some exercise we make our way around the neighborhood, despite the fact it's about ten degrees outside. I make it through unscathed, my knee throbbing slightly. But I'm fine.

Until I go to Target, and not five steps from the damn car, I slide and there it goes again.

Am not happy about this and am saying Hail Marys every other minute so that I'm not completely out of it for Christmas, because I have a shitload left to do. It's really achy, although it hasn't swollen up too far. So, I might just be in luck. So, if you've got an extra holiday prayer in your heart, offer it up for my knee, would ya? I'm thinking I should be ok if I watch it over the next couple of days. But if I slide again, well...thar she blows.

Another dislocated kneecap and months of muy painful physical therapy is not what I want for Christmas.

Posted by Kathy at 04:25 PM | Comments (2)

December 20, 2004

A Brief Note To Stephen Green

Wherefore art thou, Martini Boy?

I miss you.

Would you please start writing again. Sometime soon?

Or I'm going to have to delink you. Not to throw a threat out there first thing, but hey, a girl's gotta have her standards.

It's nothing personal, it's just that I try not to give permalinks to bloggers who---ahem---don't bother blogging. If you've got other stuff going on, hey, great. Just let me know, and I'll keep the link up there and will wait for your return. But this, "I'm here. I'm not here. I'm here. I'm not here." stuff is killing me.

Like most people, I have a particular order in which I have my bookmarks set. I do this so my sleep-addled brain can have a chance to absorb the caffeine I feed it whilst I surf, like an automaton. Every morning, I sit down at the computer, read the comics, then Sullivan, then Lileks and then you. You are above Goldstein on my morning surf-fest. You are above Catalano. You are even above the Instadude in the batting order.

To put it bluntly, your absence has been fucking with my surfing chi.

I simply cannot get into Michele's stuff, when I haven't had any Vodka with my cheerios. Goldstein just doesn't seem as funny if you're not around to suck up to him. Why, I can't even really take Instapundit seriously if you're not on the case first. I feel incomplete. A shell of my former self. Unhappy and unloved, etc.

Could we please have an end to this in absentia business?

Posted by Kathy at 10:47 PM | Comments (0)

Wink, Wink. Nudge, Nudge.

Oh, man. This is funny. I can only imagine that the irrepressible Mummies of England were either laughing their fool, yet well-coiffed, heads off or were so scandalized that they just slapped the telly off.

There really isn't an in-between on this one.

Shamelessly pilfered from Margi, who, under the circumstances, could not have titled her post any better.

Posted by Kathy at 10:10 PM | Comments (2)

Christmas Letters: Dos and Don'ts


Posted by Kathy at 09:56 PM | Comments (0)

Email Mockery!

I suppose, on one of them thar' sidebars, I should publish a warning that if you send me a stupid email, it will henceforth be published and subjected to harsh mockery. Well, I don't have any such warning posted. Pfft. Like that's gonna stop me.

While I've never had the need to publish such a warning---mainly because the Cake Eater mailbox has, mostly, been an unloved, ignored place---today has proved to be the exception to the rule. After all, it's not everyday you receive an email heralding that, since you have set yourself up as a vigorous opponent of Islamofascism, a fatwa has been issued against you.

Since whomever wrote this email has their wires crossed in such a way that they could light up Antarctica simply by blinking two times really fast, I feel the compulsion to have a little fun at their expense.

Let the mockery begin!

FEED THEM TO PIGS ! Dear Fellow Christian, Jew, Buddhist or Sikh This will be the most improtant email you will ever read in your entire life so please be patient and read to the end or you will wish you had.

Oooh! An appeal to a diverse, but by no means comprehensive, group of religious folks, a violent reference to swine, and a warning that I'd better heed about reading something! WOWEEEEEE! All the highpoints in a few sentences. Woooooh. The author should be published! Daily. With loads of money thrown at them. They're so concise and urgent Shivers are running up and down my spine!

There is a civil war brewing that is being kept from us that you ALL need to know about.

Really? Hadn't heard of it. By all means, tell me. I'm all agog!

There are some things that need clarifying so that we can leave behind a planet of peace for our children and their children and future generations.

Ah, peace, love and harmony! Is there any better sentiment? I think not. We all want peace love and harmony not only for us, but for our descendants. It's common ground, people, and the author is, indeed, the only person to clarify this matter so we can achieve the lofty goal.

Please pass this email on to anyone you love or care about and make sure they are NOT muslim.! TRY AND FORWARD TO AT LEAST 10 PEOPLE !

Oooh, no one I love should be a follower of Allah and I need to forward this email to at least ten people. So they'll make sure no one they love is Muslim, either.

Hmmm. Ok. Muslims live downstairs. TARGET ACQUIRED! What would be the best way to accomplish this goal. Forwarding them this email? Naaaaaah! Why? Because I don't have their email address! I have to go talk to them in person if I want to achieve this goal!

But how to achieve it?


I suppose I could convince my neighbors to convert to Catholicism. Might take some work, but I think they're craving bacon, so pointing out to them that if they were Catholic, they could, indeed, eat bacon might just do the trick. Or maybe I should get my other neighbors to take them to Temple? Because, you know, Jews secretly crave bacon, too, and maybe they'd help their fellow swine-rejecters along? It could happen. You know, in the spirit of La Resistance, with La Marseille playing in the background. Or maybe we should just get the other neighbors to take them to a Lutheran service, because, after all those Lutherans strive to be non-offensive! And they can eat bacon, too. We shall show those pesky bacon haters the way to eating bacon---one way or another!

But the question would be why I should take the time to bring these muslims I love over to the power of the other white meat. It's nagging at me, I'm afraid. I wonder if the author will tell me?

Oh yeah...

1) Muslims are slowly poisoning us with their curries and kebabs. FACT
2) Beheading is a too softer word for what lies in store for us - see to see what these evil islamic extremists really do to severe the heads of our people. FACT WARNING: THESE CLIPS WILL HAUNT YOU !



I've had food poisoning from eating bad curry before. I thought it was because it had been sitting in the fridge for a few days too many, but hey, it appears there's a conspiracy involved! Woohoo! I can now blame the awful intestinal distress (to put it mildly) and exceedingly weird dreams I was having that night on MUSLIMS, and not my own stupidity! Woohoo! Nothing quite like being able to pass the buck along, eh?

Then, just in case I'm having doubts about the Worldwide Conspiracy of Curry Makers (TM), the author tells me to visit Because "beheading is "too softer a word" to describe what lies in store for us! Well, forgive me if I skip the requisite visit to my friendly neighborhood bestiality website. I'm just too damn dainty for that sort of place.

We need to get ALL muslims out of the country of England and USA and the ONLY way we are going to do this is by ceasing to use their businesses ie: Curry shops, stores and kebab stalls.

If you like curry, then buy from SIKHS instead (sikhs are our allies and they are the ones who wear the turbans instead of skull caps) THIS IS IMPORTANT TO KNOW SO AS YOU DO NOT CONFUSE THEM WITH THE ENEMY.

A boycott! YAY! I can finally get in on that exciting boycott action I missed when I was a kid and was too young to jump on Apartheid! Fabulous. And so much easier, too. I don't even have to go to DC and burn a flag. I can just not eat curry, and if I like curry (which I do) I can make sure to patronize only Sikh-owned curry shops. Fab. Thanks for laying out all the options for me. I suppose this also means I should block up any venting ducts that I share with the neighbors, because they're always cooking curry. Hence, I shouldn't be smelling the fruits of their labors, because by smelling them, well, I'm participating in the Worldwide Conspiracy of Curry Makers (TM), aren't I?

The duct tape will be flowing freely in the Cake Eater Apartment tonight, baby!

The same poison that was used against russian president is now being slowly introduced into our food by muslim outlets ALL OVER THE UK ! FACT. !!!

Putin's been poisoned? Well knock me over with a feather! I thought it was only Yushchenko who'd had to hire a food taster to check over his Chicken Kiev, that Ukrainian specialty. On the upside, a profession in the UK that hasn't been around since the heady days of Henry VIII will be recruiting shortly! I can only imagine what sort of benefits the trade unions will acquire for these individuals. That's gotta be one heck of a pension plan!

Now that people have cottoned on that they will have their heads sawn off if they go near iraq, terrorists will now be taking action in our countries needing nothing more that a video camera and a serrated sword/knife.

ARM YOUR HOMES ! With swords, crossbows and anything you can get your hands on that will KILL intruders should they decide that YOUR family would look good on tape and which will eventually end up on

Time to weapon-up! Because they're coming after us. Here. In America and in the UK! Excellent! Bout frickin' time, assholes! I've been waiting. No more hidey holes for you! There's nothing I like better than crossbows and semi-automatic weapons. And there's the added incentive that by slaying the beasts, I can end up on Ogrish. Because it's so damn hard to get on Ogrish. Their publication standards are just so lofty. It's really hard to meet up with their expectations. This way I get to shortcut the submission process simply by slaying some Islamofascists who attempt to break and enter the Cake Eater Pad.

In the words of the Poet of Our Day, Eric Cartman: "Sweeet!"

GET THEM OUT ! STARVE THEM OUT ! DO NOT BUY FROM THEM ! THEIR BUSINESSES WILL COLLAPSE AND THEY WILL HAVE TO GO ELSEWHERE ! DO NOT SERVE THEM ! As said before, if you think this is over-reacting , over dramatic, and unrealistic then visit and OPEN YOUR EYES NOW !!!

Ok, now it's getting to be a bit tiresome. Methinks someone really likes Ogrish for stuff other than beheading pics.

Who do you think your pleasant muslim neighbours are going to choose over you and their god ! ? If you think its you, then you are a FOOL !

Well, then. I'll stop admiring the chubby cheeks on my Muslim neighbors' kid. He obviously wants to kill me. I'd better get on top of the situation because soon he'll be able to wield a knife. He just has to get that potty training thing down pat before he can try to slice my head off.

Be instrumental in the most important thing you will ever be a part if your entire life and make sure these facts get across the globe within 24 hours by the power of the internet. God said, you will know evil people by their fruits. And the fact that these people KILL when WE voice our OWN opinion in OUR OWN COUNTRY shows that we are dealing with primitive, un-evolved, rabid animals.

Yes, we need to get these facts out over the Internet. I swear. It's the only place I can go to where people will tell me the truth!

Girl Scouts Honor!

Enoch powell predicted there will be rivers of blood in the UK and this is becoming frighteningly close to happening ! Now that they have managed to ban christian school assemblies and reading books such as "3 little pigs " they NOW want to ban Christian Nativity scenes.

Who the fuck is Enoch Powell? Should I Google? Naaaaaah. He must be an important soul if he's quoted in an email. I will believe him. It sounds like he and O'Reilly have much in common about being against banning nativity scenes.


Christ bled for me? What? Did He only die for someone else? Sheesh. I see the way it works. I'm fine with it. Really. It's not like I'm hurt or anything. {Sniff}

The videos you will watch will make you sick, but you need to know that the devil is right in front of us, and we are being blind-folded.!

Please use the brain that God gave you and open your eyes. Make your own conclusions! And know that if there were any a better time to unite as one, it is now !.

Well, I can almost get behind that one. Unity. The devil being ever present. Maybe there's some sense to be had in this after all.


Ah, man. Premature ejaculation is always so damn messy. That was quite the wad you blew, bud. Have fun mopping it up on your own.

Yours in the real God of righteousness.

Oooh. I'm, like, all impressed with your, like, piety.



» Fatwa issued against Armies of Liberation for American Hostage Beheaded
» Fatwa issued against RIGHT ON RED >> for American Hostage Murdered
» Fatwa issued against Interested-Participant for American Hostage Beheaded
» Fatwa issued against Ramblings' Journal for American Eugene Armstrong beheaded by terrorists in Iraq
» Fatwa issued against for Armstrong Beheaded
» Fatwa issued against Sparse Matrix for Religion of Peace Saws Off Another Head
» Fatwa issued against Outside The Beltway for Video: American Hostage Eugene Armstrong Beheaded
» Fatwa issued against The LLama Butchers for What the....?
» Fatwa issued against Way Off Bass for Reflections on Terror
» Fatwa issued against The Southern California Law Blog for Another Videotaped Execution
» Fatwa issued against Cake Eater Chronicles for Know Thy Enemy
» Fatwa issued against Rooftop Report for American Eugene Armstrong beheaded by terrorists in Iraq - - Video
» Fatwa issued against Backcountry Conservative for American Hostage Beheaded on Video
» Fatwa issued against Wizbang for American Hostage Allegedly Beheaded In Iraq
» Fatwa issued against Poisoning Pigeons for What are we prepared to do? American beheaded
» Fatwa issued against In Search of Utopia for Eugene Armstrong RIP
» Fatwa issued against baldilocks for Fair Trade?
» Fatwa issued against No Pundit Intended for American Hostage Beheaded
» Fatwa issued against Classical Values for Eugene Armstrong Beheaded
» Fatwa issued against Six Meat Buffet for Another beheading
» Fatwa issued against Sworn Enemy for American Beheaded
» Fatwa issued against Classical Values for Paul Johnson beheading video released
» Fatwa issued against Demoncratic Blunderground for Barbarians at the Gate!
» Fatwa issued against Gut Rumbles for not for the faint of heart
» Fatwa issued against for Two Americans Beheaded
» Fatwa issued against Ravenwood's Universe for RCOB™ Moment
» Fatwa issued against Winds of Change.NET for Why Don't We Just Listen?
» Fatwa issued against Grouchy's Liberaltopia for Link to American beheading video
» Fatwa issued against Classical Values for Nick Berg Beheading Video is here


Hey! There's my fatwa! YipppySkippy! Looks like I'll be in good company when we all cack for the sole reason we linked to Rusty's report.

Who knew trackback could be so damn dangerous! Deadly, even. Damn Haloscan and Movable Type! I knew you'd be nothing but trouble from the first moment I laid eyes on your beautiful link whoring abilities! Damn you all to hell! I shall go into hiding....NOW!

ps. Did you know that just 3 pigs will eat a human being within 24 hours completely outright after just 2 days without eating. Hair, teeth, bones, the lot !
Just thought you might be interested in that fact.

Actually, I already knew that. I went to college in Iowa. Those farmboys sure do know a lot and are, on the whole, willing to share it. Thanks for the tip, though.

Ahhh. Feel better? I know I do.

Posted by Kathy at 09:49 PM | Comments (0)

Regarding the UN's Future

The husband has said in the past that we should simply send in the Marines and that would be the end of that.

Jeff G. says, "{...} I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit."

Me? Well, I think we should just make everyone that works there eat a lot of French cheese, wait for the lactose intolerance to set in, and then light a match.

Cost effective, no?

Posted by Kathy at 01:30 PM | Comments (1)

Who Better... take on the Xenophobe Hour of Power (aka "Lou Dobbs Tonight") than the crack young staff at "The Hatemonger's Quarterly?"

Posted by Kathy at 01:02 PM | Comments (0)

December 19, 2004

Clever...Yet Evil

Yesterday, my neighbor put me to shame.

To explain: I like to bake. I really go all out during this time of year, too. The problem with this is that the husband and I can't eat all that I produce, even when I just stick to the basic favorites. Simply. Cannot. Eat. It. All. Or. Hips. Would. Go. Even. Wider. Than. Already. Are. Which would be bad. Neither do I want to listen to the husband complain about his lovehandles expanding. No one needs that. (And I'm positive he doesn't want to listen to my complaints about hip expansion, either, so fair's fair.)

This was a conundrum for a large number of years. We want all the goodies, but don't want fudge sitting around until February, either. When we actually attained neighbors that we liked (well, for the most part) a solution presented itself: I'd bake all the stuff we liked, would box most of it up and give it away as Christmas/Hannukah/Ramadan gifties. (The three major religions---as well as a token agnostic in the form of the husband---are well represented in the Cake Eater Alley.) This worked perfectly: we'd get the stuff we liked, but body parts wouldn't expand, and we'd get in good with the people who lived around us. Perfect, no?

Well, it was until the nasty Cake Eater Neighbor expanded his house, which included another huge kitchen for his (exceedingly lovely and very nice) wife's baking habit. She didn't like to bake in her old kitchen: it was too small. So, while their regular kitchen is now the size of a football field, she has another kitchen in their basement which is specifically set aside for her baking. A problem arose when she appropriated my habit of baking for the neighbors at Christmastime.

The first year she did this, I wasn't worried because everyone told me that my stuff was better. And I knew that they meant it. Great. I was confident in my abilities and everyone still wanted my stuff, and would go so far as to drop veiled requests for a larger share of the lemon bar stash and would wonder aloud about when the box of goodies would arrive. The second year was when the problem appeared: she decided that she was going to go whole hog and produced a huge tin of many varied sorts of cookies for our consumption. And they were good, too: the tin that was delivered to our house was snarfed down in record time. I had gained competition, it seemed, but the outcome of the race was unsure. Her first batch of cookies was nothing to write home about. But the second, noted above, they were good, and the presentation was excellent.

This year, however, she went nuts. The third time round, indeed, appears to be the charm.


Yesterday, high on Christmas Cheer, the obnoxious Cake Eater Neighbor delivered a oversized gift bag full of the following, most of it impeccably presented in clear, beribboned bags, replete with printed labels:

1. A huge bag of adulterated Chex party mix (which is really damn good)
2. A huge bag of this caramel coated puffy stuff mixed with cashews (the husband's favorite)
3. An oversized tin of Christmas cookies: macaroons, ginger bread men, coconut balls---and those are just the ones I've eaten. There's lots more in there. All perfectly baked and positively scrumptious.
4. A bag of pan baked chocolate chip cookies
5. An extra bag of those puffy white cookies that are coated with powdered sugar. And there are two chocolate cookies in that bag, too, that are also coated with powdered sugar. (She even thought to put the stuff coated in powdered sugar in a separate bag!)
6. A jar of elderberry jelly (she canned!)
7. And the most clever use of extra homegrown tomatoes that I've seen yet: a bottle of homemade Bloody Mary mix. (Which, I am sad to say, I'm going to regift: I despise Bloody Marys, and as the husband doesn't drink anymore and doesn't see the point in drinking Virgin Marys, well, there's no real use in keeping it around, is there? Besides, we'd have to buy celery. The ickiness of spiced tomato juice aside, it's still pretty darn clever if you ask me.)

How, I ask you, my devoted Cake Eater Readers, am I to compete with that?

My little box of extra goodies is going to look like crap when compared to hers. And I have to whine a bit, because she got the friggin' idea from me, and now she's completely outdone me. She's put me in the shade. I can't up or vary my recipes: we just can't eat any more than we already do and I don't want to switch things around just to compete. While I'm sure she's looking forward to my cookies and is completely unaware of the angst she's created in me because she is a really nice person (despite her atrocious taste in husbands) she's nonetheless boxed me in and I don't like it.


Posted by Kathy at 01:47 PM | Comments (2)

Vaginas For Victory!

Damn. I wish I'd written this.

It appears I'm not the only one who's had it with the constant staging and restaging of The Vagina Monologues.

{hat tip: Drew}

Posted by Kathy at 12:52 AM | Comments (0)

December 18, 2004

Just Plain Wrong

What the hell is it with these people?

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Dozens of children visited Michael Jackson (news)'s Neverland Valley Ranch on Friday at the invitation of the pop superstar who is awaiting trial on child molestation charges.

Three buses containing mostly grade-school children and some parents as well as five minivans drove through the gates of Jackson's sprawling estate in the foothills above Santa Barbara, California, Reuters photographers said.

It was unclear where the children had come from. Jackson's spokeswoman said on Thursday such invitations were regularly extended to groups including churches.

What the @#$k are these people thinking? Let's take a crack. Could it be something like...

...Oh, it's Michael Jackson! Never mind that he's a freak---with a capital 'F'---of nature. Never mind that a grown man has a goddamn amusement park at his house. Never mind that he's facing charges that he sexually molested a young boy. Never mind that pedophiles are the worst of the worst sexual predators when it comes to recividism. Never mind that when there's smoke, there must be a frickin' fire somewhere nearby. Never mind any and all of that----HE'S A CELEBRITY AND HE'S RICH! Therefore we must get as close as humanly possible to him, lest he decided to shower us---the unwashed and unfamous masses---with his largesse on the day we're in the same zipcode with him.

Could that be it? Ya think?


I feel for all the people whose children have been molested by strangers. They must just be absolutely appalled that people would allow their children to get anywhere near this freak. I can only think that it must be like being forced to watch a train wreck and being able to do nothing to stop it.


Posted by Kathy at 02:32 PM | Comments (0)

The Law of Sniffer's Row

It had to happen sometime.

The San Antonio City Council has passed a measure to regulate strippers:

SAN ANTONIO - Strippers in this city will soon have to put on something they can't take off — a business license.

The City Council on Friday approved a measure requiring exotic dancers to apply for permits and wear them while performing.

Law enforcement authorities said the rule, which was unanimously approved by the 11-member council and goes into effect in 10 days, will allow them to quickly identify those dancers who are breaking nudity ordinances. (Among other things, full nudity and contact with customers are not allowed in San Antonio strip clubs.)

"We're trying to reduce criminal activity inside the establishments on the part of the entertainers, i.e., prostitution," said Lt. Mike Gorhum, who heads the vice squad.

The permit — expected to be roughly half the size of a credit card — would include the dancer's stage name and a photo. Police would be able to check that information against club records to determine her real name and other personal data.

{...}The new rule also mandates a 3-foot space between dancers and patrons to ensure no touching during table dances. Such contact is already banned, though violations are not uncommon.

Proving that once again, if you can't ban it, the best way to control it is to regulate it!


More ruminations after the jump.

This is ridiculous.

Cutting down on prostitution? Strippers are moonlighting? Jeez. Not to generalize or anything, but {insert Gomer Pyle voice here} Surprise! Surprise! Surprise! Is this anything we really didn't already know? What the hell is the problem here? Is this really about out-of-control prostitution, or is this more about back-door prohibition?

Fer cryin' out loud.

I am not a fan of strip clubs. Yet I am more than willing to stipulate that many of the women who work in these places are only in it for the money, that they make a good living, and are able to provide a better life for themselves and their families while being completely aware of the cesspool they're swimming in, and they have the tools to deal any problems that might arise. While they have to pay a heavy toll to earn that money, if they decide that's what they want to do and everything's on the up and up, fine. So be it. No hassles from me. In other words: if you think Striptease was a quaint little movie about a situation that rarely exists in real life, you're kidding yourself.

This is a business that is around to exploit the weakness of its customers. Lonely? Wife not treating you well? We've got what you need. They exploit their customers. This is fine if people are willing to be exploited. After all, there's no law against taking advantage of fools, is there? Yet, in the process, this aura of exploitation bleeds over to this industry's employees, who in turn become exploited.

This is what I have a problem with. It's a personal thing for me. A very dear and old friend of mine was exploited horribly simply because she did not have the good sense to know better, and was desperate enough not to listen to those around her who did and tried to warn her off. She started waiting tables at a strip club to make money to pay off her credit card bills. It was the only place in our relatively small college town where she could make a load of money really fast. We knew she was telling the truth. Jobs with flexible schedules were as scarce as hen's teeth at that point in time. But we worried. She told all of us when we voiced our objections that "she was going to keep her clothes on, thank you very much," that this was just a temporary thing to get out of debt. That the tips were great and that it would be over with quickly. It probably would have worked out all right if she'd stuck to her guns.

But she didn't.

The club manager, then, having heard her sob story of needing money quickly, took advantage of said knowledge and wheedled this very nice, but very naive, homeschooled, Preacher's Kid into dancing. Just one time, darling, and all your troubles will be taken care of. I promise. She was naive enough to buy it. Suddenly, she's got a five-hundred-dollar-a-week coke habit to pay for. (Provided for by her new boyfriend, fellow stripper, and assistant manager of the club. Reportedly, it made the stage fright go away and helped her with her inhibitions). She then brings the stuff onto the property of our sorority house (in her car, which was parked on our grounds) and the people in the house who do not like her or her behavior, because they think it's bringing all of them down, get her kicked out---without a hearing, too. They bring in the regional big wig and force her to deactivate herself---for the good of the house.

With nowhere to live, seemingly abandoned by the people whom she cares for most, she moves in with her new boyfriend and it goes downhill from there. While she quits the cocaine, she decides that, despite everything she's ever been taught, she's going to keep stripping because she has expenses now: she's helping her boyfriend pay off his bills so he can get sole custody of his daughter. So, she starts commuting to a small town about sixty miles away on Friday and Saturday nights and starts dancing at a club there, because she makes more money. Thank God for two of our guy friends, who accompany her, every weekend, to keep her safe (despite her protestations to the contrary) because while she makes more money at this club, the bouncers are lazy and do not rush to protect her from patrons who overstep their bounds. She wears a wig and obscures her features with makeup as much as possible because she has finally learned not to let her life as a stripper follow her into her other world, because it has followed her and she has not liked it.

When she graduates from school, she lands a great job. She's making decent money and is proud of what she's doing for a living. She quits stripping. While she willingly went along with all of this, I know she wasn't comfortable with it, and she admitted it. She was a preacher's kid after all: she knew her life choices weren't squaring with what she'd been brought up to believe and when she finally announced she wanted out, we, her remaining few friends, rejoiced and helped her to make it happen. When it did happen, the crisis of conscience that had revolved around this two-year-period was finally over and she could breathe easy, finally comfortable with herself, stripping definitely behind her. Her deadbeat boyfriend reluctantly goes along with this for a time, then after he's bled her paycheck dry, convinces her to start stripping again, because they need more cash. My friend is his golden goose and he doesn't want her to stop laying golden eggs.

When she finally breaks free from this jackal, it's because she's met someone else and has moved out of town to be with the new, very nice guy...whom, of course, she met while dancing. Fortunately, this guy was great for her and helped her out of this world and she's never looked back. If you met her today, you'd have no idea that this successful, forthright businesswoman had danced topless and gave lap dances at one point in her life. You'd have no clue. While I'm not denying that the lessons she was forced to learn during this period in her life have made her savvier in her business dealings today, I know the price she paid for those lessons. And a heavy price it was. And all because, at one point in time, she believed the wrong people and followed their advice. This could be true of any person in any business. Our choices make us who we are. I cannot believe, however, that if she'd started waiting tables at a regular bar, that her life during those years would have been as hard and as demeaning as it was. She was exploited. Her manager saw an in and took advantage of her. She did not have the tools to know that she was being exploited: that it was the sex trade---albeit a legal part of the sex trade---that exploited her does not leave me with warm and happy thoughts of this industry.

Sex is complicated enough without adding money into the equation. Those inhibitions, feelings of guilt, and downright misconceptions of what the act of sex is supposed to be about are magnified greatly when your ability to pay the bills becomes dependent upon having to bare yourself for lonely letches. It tells people that the only thing that will ever make them money is their body. Don't bother with the brains! They're never going to make you as much money as you would by putting your bod up for sale! This is wrong. And it goes against everything the best part of our culture---education, enlightenment, and reason---promotes. The sex trade is all about providing a product whose sole purpose is to make people feel happy in the pants, and that degrades us all by lowering us to our least common denominator.

This bothers me.

Yet I'm willing to allow that if everyone---employees and customers---knows what they're getting themselves into, it's ok. My friend's case, while hardly unique, hasn't put me on an "abolish all strip clubs" track. I'm pretty much a live and let live type of gal when it comes to this sort of stuff: if no one's getting hurt, no hassles. Do I want better regulation of these places? Nope. Why the hell the San Antonio City Council believes that regulating this industry will suddenly make the vice aspect of it dissapear, I have no idea. The problem with this is not that there is a market to provide a product, but rather that so many people want to buy that product. Until you rid people of this, well, regulating strip clubs is one more battle that will not be won. Making back door moves to abolish it will not make it go away. It's the same with any other vice, like alcohol. Did prohibition make people stop drinking? Nope. It just drove it underground. It also reinforced our worst and mistaken understanding of what causes alcoholism---a problem we are still grappling with today, take it from me, the wife of a "recovering" alcoholic. It's not the booze that creates the problem: the problem existed before the individual used it to self-medicate. Following this course of logic, what's the problem with sex that leads men and women alike to simply disregard the higher function and meaning of sex to that which only makes them happy in the pants?

Until we take a crack at answering that question, any effort to regulate strip clubs is simply a waste of time and money.

Posted by Kathy at 01:42 PM | Comments (0)

December 17, 2004

Playing Hooky

I didn't feel like working this afternoon, so I hopped a bus to the mall and went to go and see a matinee of Flight of the Phoenix.

Dennis Quaid is, indeed, sans shirt for a few scenes.

This is good.

If you need more details than that, well, you'll find them after the jump.

Picture a glorious WWII-era, chrome coated, connected tail, cargo plane soaring over the seemingly neverending dunes of the Gobi Desert. After casting its shadow over the barren landscape for a good long while, this winged beast comes back to earth, landing in the middle of nowhere and pulling up to, what seems, are the only modern buildings---only buildings period---in a five-thousand mile radius.

The buildings comprise an oil drilling station. The arrival of this plane is not good news: it means the corporation is shutting it down and it's time to pack it up and head home. No one from the corporate headquarters has bothered to call these individuals and inform them that the jig is up: that's Capt. Frank Towns job, and is why he's earned the nasty nickname "Shut 'Em Down Towns."

Much angst is felt quickly, but the pack-up ensues and everything of value that isn't nailed down makes it onto the plane, causing overloading, the station workers load themselves up and they head out to Beijing. With one scheduled refueling stop along the way.

This is where the fun begins, in the form of a sandstorm, which Towns chooses to fly through, thinking everyone can handle it and that he's never seen a sandstorm go very high and he can beat it with altitude; the only other choice being to turn around and refuel: not an easy task in the middle of nowhere.

Bad choice.

The plane crashes, leaving the survivors stranded in the middle of the desert, two hundred miles off course, and they lost their aerial in the storm. They have water, but not enough to satisfy everyone's eight-liter-a-day requirements. They have some food, in the form of canned peaches and hearts of palm, but not enough to last them very long. Capt. Towns job rapidly becomes one of keeping people from killing themselves, by erroneously thinking they can walk out, or by the simple accident of losing their way in the middle of the night. He also breaks up quite a few fights. A stranger who had hitched a ride, Elliot, played by Giovanni Ribisi, declares that he can get them out of there: his solution being to build a new plane out of the old, using the tools they'd overloaded the plane with. Having nothing better to do, everyone hops on the bandwagon.

Flight of the Phoenix is a remake of a Jimmy Stewart vehicle from 1965, and I can see where this movie might grate on the nerves of those who loved the original. I haven't seen it, but I have to think that adding a scene wherein the rappers in the cast get to show off their skills by lipsynching to a jerryrigged ipod would annoy. But I enjoyed the movie.

Except for the scene where the rappers did their deal. Which I watched for a minute and then decided would be the perfect time to go to the bathroom. The last thing I wanted to see was Dennis Quaid or Hugh Laurie pretending to be amused by music their characters wouldn't like. Can you say contrived, boys and girls? That scene just doesn't exist for me. Just like the whole Like a Virgin song and dance number from Moulin Rouge. {shudder}

Anyway, the story is great, the effects are spectacular (if you don't like flying, I wouldn't recommend watching the crash scene as it's scary as hell), and the movie is beautifully filmed. But I found myself wanting more. Which I suppose is greedy of me, but hey, that's just me: I'm a greedy bitch by nature. You were expecting something else, perhaps?

While the setup is sufficient to establish the roles of the characters, I felt if they had just spent five to ten minutes more setting up the characters, you, the audience member, would have been that much more involved in the story. It could have been a really gripping film, but they decided to lowball it for whatever reason. Not that I have any problems with lowballing, but hey, I kind of expected better. It wouldn't have taken much to properly introduce people and give us a reason to care whether they lived or died. As it happens, one guy bought it and I just didn't care, hence it didn't make the situation more dire, which was what it was intended to do (I believe). They could have left out the rap scenes.

While I found it to be realistic, I was a wee bit surprised that Miranda Otto's character, Kelly---the lone female---never once had to fend off any male-in-desperate-straits nastiness. Not to think the worst of men, but hey, let's face it: if a guy's seeking distraction, sex becomes numero uno on the list of things to achive. It's simply the way they're hardwired. Instead of being either a vixen or prey, she was just one of the guys, and that, while being not at all unwelcome, I thought was just asking a bit much of the situation. I've been the lone female in a group of males before and have had to fend off animalistic behavior---and I wasn't marooned in the middle of the desert with very little hope of survival. That she didn't have to fend off even a pinch on the bum surprised.

There's a whopper of a twist toward the end of the movie, and Laurie does a spectacular job during this revelation. I'm not going to say any more because I don't want to spoil it, but he's good. Probably the only bit of serious thespian work in the film.

So, while I have no scoring system (three cakes out of four?) I'd say go and see it if you want some distraction from Christmas shopping. But don't pay eight-fifty: go to a matinee. You'll leave feeling that you got your money's worth. If not, wait for the DVD and see if they are able to release a Director's Cut. If they do, I have a feeling it will be better than the theatrical release.

There might be even more of Dennis without his shirt.

Posted by Kathy at 09:45 PM | Comments (0)

False Dichotomies

Drew makes some very good points about the Michael Moore vs. Mel Gibson, flog to the death-athon that's happening within the media as Awards Season starts.

Moore's film concerns politics. Gibson's film concerns faith. Creating this false dichotomy may also put faith and politics in competition, or perhaps equate them in a dangerous way -- as if both filims express extremist views, or both play fast and loose with the truth.

When drawing ideological divisions in this country, it's tempting to call "The Passion" a Red State movie, and "Fahrenheit 9/11" a Blue State movie, but labels are never that simple. Just as there are people who are not professing Christians who support our President, there are certainly people critical of George Bush who also have faith in Christ.

Go read the whole thing.

Posted by Kathy at 03:16 PM | Comments (0)

Wodehouse Update

Taking to heart the general consensus of my very generous commenters, I am starting with Jeeves. Then will move on to Psmith and then the golf stories, leaving Blandings for last.

As such, I have reserved Very Good, Jeeves, Much Obliged, Jeeves and Ring for Jeeves. And courtesy o' the Hennepin County Library's incredibly generous delivery policy, which allows for the winging of books hither and thither across the county, I shall be picking them up at my branch within the next week or so.

Thanks for all of your help, and I will update when I get into them.

Posted by Kathy at 03:08 PM | Comments (0)

Holiday Movie Fun, Or How To Make Something Out of Very, Very Little

And no, I'm not talking about this or this or this. (Although, while the critics appear to be evenly divided about whether the last one sucks rocks or is a bit of escapist fun, the reason I want to see it is because I've always had the hots for Dennis Quaid, and he's sans shirt in it! Woohoo!)

Rather, I'm talking about this. Make sure you watch all three movies. Then go and listen to Jonathan's critique.

How the hell he got three plus minutes of funny, yet somehow valid, film critique out of those I have no idea.

{hat tip: Galley Slaves}

Posted by Kathy at 02:21 PM | Comments (0)


Just got a photo Christmas card from my brother's family.

My fourteen year-old-niece, who, when I saw her this past summer, swore she was never going to smoke or drink because she'd seen the movie Thirteen and it scared her straight, has gone goth.

Yep. That's right. Goth.

She has dyed her formerly brown hair to that purply-black color that generally leads to bad things. Like dark purple lipstick, loads of black eyeliner, tattoos of Japanese characters that look cool, but in all reality mean "I'm an idiot," and multiple piercings in places most of us would cringe to think of having a needle touch. While she's wearing a very pretty, well-adjusted smile, a normal amount of makeup and a sweater that I'd swipe if we lived in the same town, it's the hair that's completely throwing me. It's black! What the hell?

This is surprising behavior from the girl who literally begged her parents for tickets to a Britney Spears concert for her birthday. As in she wrote a dissertation on why she should be allowed to go and posted it on the kitchen bulletin board, for all and sundry to read and chuckle about. Em didn't give care what other people would think of it: she simply wanted to go thought that if by posting her dissertation for all to read that perhaps she could gain a few allies, well, so be it. She's got chutzpah. Moxie. Whatever you want to call it. I can only surmise that this hair coloring adventure was not Mom and Dad approved. It was probably achieved in a friend's bathroom, under the cover of a slumber party.

Ah, the joys of transitioning from grade school to high school. I'm sure she'll outgrow it, but damn. Em! Your hair is black!? What the heck were you thinking? Aieeeeee.

Of course, this makes me wonder about high school nowadays. Particularly the high school she attends, because it's the same high school where I matriculated. All I can say is that there must not be too many hard-ass nuns left teaching there, because if Sr. Anthony (and yes, that was her name) was alive, well, let's just say my lovely niece would receive a reaming like you wouldn't believe based strictly on the color of her hair.

Posted by Kathy at 01:40 PM | Comments (1)

December 16, 2004



Man, that's just disturbing.

Ah, well. At least I won't have to bite my nails to the quick during next year's World Series, wondering when Pedro's arm is going to give out.

Posted by Kathy at 05:41 PM | Comments (1)

News Flash!

Oliver Stone sez that Alexander didn't do well in the States because Americans iz stooopid. At least when compared to those Humanities lovin' Europeans.

"People in America are apathetic to ancient history — they are," Stone told reporters Thursday in Paris. "They don't study the classics like they do in Europe, so there is a significant difference in reaction. I know this because I've been in 12 foreign countries in the last month, to 12 openings."

The director noted that his film — based on the life of Alexander the Great — was No. 1 in about 18 countries, including Greece. He said he's happy just to share the story of Alexander.

"It was a privilege to make a film about such a unique man, so financial concerns were not uppermost," he said. "I'm glad people can at least get a part of his mind and remember this man because he will be forgotten."

Of course the reason that this movie failed wasn't that the movie sucked, but rather that we Americans are apathetic to ancient history. And of course financial concerns weren't an issue: he's a friggin' genius and as such he's not ever going to be held accountable by the Gods of Money in Hollywood. They'll just keep forking over the cash for him to make movies that suck.

Because he's Oliver Stone and all. His reputation precedes him.

By at least a mile. And makes people laugh at his delusions of grandeur.

Posted by Kathy at 11:59 AM | Comments (3)

Random Question For The Day

Can somebody find this guy and kill him?


Posted by Kathy at 11:41 AM | Comments (2)

December 15, 2004

Blaque Jacques!

Honestly, is there anything better than Blaques Jacques Chirac shooting off his mouth to make your day better?

Tee hee.

President Jacques Chirac lifted a French flag from a plaque and dedicated the Millau span, which is billed as the world’s tallest road bridge.

{...}“This exceptional opening will go down in industrial and technological history,” Chirac said, praising the bridge’s designers and builders for creating “a prodigy of art and architecture – a new emblem of French civil engineering”.

The bridge will serve as a symbol of “a modern and conquering France”, he said.

(my emphasis)

A conquering France. Hmmm.

What's that old joke? French rifles for sale: never fired, only dropped once.

Of course, I'm assuming he meant "conquering" in the most literal sense of the word. It could be a metaphor or something equally obscure. Seriously.

Posted by Kathy at 11:42 PM | Comments (0)

I Have Absolutely No Self-Control

...when it comes to this sort of thing. Sigh. You know who's responsible for feeding my addiction to these sorts of things: the blog which shall not be named because I feel like a very weak person for always succumbing and I'll be damned if I'm going to give them any credit.

Read on after the jump if you're interested.

Three names you go by:
Kath ( Just start off with a "K" name and I'll probably answer to it. Easy, no?)

Three screennames you have:
nicegirl (don't get a lot of pr0n0 spams at that email address!)

Three things you like about yourself:
I have a "unique" sense of humor, meaning if you don't get my jokes, it's not my fault, but rather yours.
I've never had a problem with the size of my breasts. They're just right.
That I can walk, talk, bathe, and feed myself. I'm pretty proud of that.

Three things you hate/dislike about yourself:
My adddiction to nicotine
That I'm excessively wordy.
My naturally curly hair
That I find it easy as pie to come up with three things I dislike about myself, yet get stumped coming up with three things that I like about myself.

Three parts of your heritage:
Can there be a more dysfunctional combo?

Three things that scare you:
Losing my husband
Plane landings

Three of your everyday essentials:
Coffee, with half and half and sugar. Milk just doesn't cut it. Neither does Splenda or Equal.
Cigarettes (while I don't really like the addiction, it's just too damn bad I flat-out love tobacco)

Three things you are wearing right now:
my wedding ring
and (No crap about the socks. I live in Minnesota and it's December. BE a rocket scientist and figure it out on your own.)

Three of your favorite bands/artists (at the moment):
The Rat Pack (The husband downloaded "The Rat Pack Christmas." It's swingin', baby!)
Mitch Miller and The Gang!

Three of your favorite songs at present:
Silver Bells (Favorite Christmas Song)
That song on the Land Rover Commercial. Downloaded, but damn if I can remember the name of the band or the song title.

Three new things you want to try in the next 12 months:
Vacation (what's that?)
Flying first class. On a really extended international flight.
Beat the husband silly in Scrabble. To the point where he begs for mercy.

Three things you want in a relationship (love is a given):
and...a nice cuddle afterward? (As of right...wait for I'm in trouble.)

Two truths and a lie:
The husband is currently playing World of Warcraft
The husband's current character has long blue hair
World of Warcraft is the most interesting game ever!

Three physical things about the opposite sex (or same) that appeal to you:
A really gorgeous backside on a tall man. Shoulders to heels. That's my favorite nudie shot in the movies!
broad shoulders
blue eyes/dark hair. Gets me every time.

Three things you just can't do:
Live without DirecTV
Eat calamari (ugh!)
Cross this thing.

Three of your favorite hobbies:
Watching lame-o TV

Three things you want to do really badly right now:
Fire up (ahhhh. DONE!)
Be done with this thing so I can go and read
Go over to the husband's computer and turn off World of Warcraft's annoying sound effects

Three careers you're considering:
Cat burglar
Jewel thief (I suppose one and two are kind of the same thing. Pfft.)
Bond Girl

Three places you want to go on vacation:
The British Isles and Ireland

Three kids names:
Fitzwilliam Darcy

Three things you want to do before you die:
Get off this continent...again.
Get the novel published, make a million dollars and buy my house on Lake Travis
Steal "Nighthawks" from the Art Institute of Chicago ala The Thomas Crown Affair, put it in a vault in my house and laugh maniacally as I whisper, "You fools!" a wide grin plastered on my face. I wouldn't give it back, though.

Posted by Kathy at 11:23 PM | Comments (1)

Calling All Wodehouse Lovers

Much to the detriment of my reputation as a literary lionness, I must admit that I have never read any of P.G. Wodehouse's work. Thinking it was time I remedied this problem, I was browsing through the online catalog of our local library system the other day and completely failed to suss out the beginnings of his enormous catalog. I have absolutely no clue as to where to start. Usually I can suss this sort of thing out with a little patience and perserverance. Not so with Wodehouse.


Do I read Blandings first or do I stick strictly with Jeeves?

Where did you, you estimable Wodehouse fans, start with your obsession? Gimme the details, too. I want the reasoning behind your choices.

I'm counting on you people. Don't let me down.

Posted by Kathy at 02:55 PM | Comments (8)

Taking A Crack

Mike Kinsley has put out a bleg via Sully:

My contention: Social Security privatization is not just unlikely to succeed, for various reasons that are subject to discussion. It is mathematically certain to fail. Discussion is pointless.

The usual case against privatization is that (1) millions of inexperienced investors may end up worse off, and (2) stocks don't necessarily do better than bonds over the long-run, as proponents assume.But privatization won't work for a better reason: it can't possibly work, even in theory. The logic is not very complicated.

1. To "work," privatization must generate more money for retirees than current arrangements. This bonus is supposed to be extra money in retirees' pockets and/or it is supposed to make up for a reduction in promised benefits, thus helping to close the looming revenue gap.

2. Where does this bonus come from? There are only two possibilities: from greater economic growth, or from other people.

3. Greater economic growth requires either more capital to invest, or smarter investment of the same amount of capital. Privatization will not lead to either of these.

a) If nothing else in the federal budget changes, every dollar deflected from the federal treasury into private social security accounts must be replaced by a dollar that the government raises in private markets. So the total pool of capital available for private investment remains the same.

b) The only change in decision-making about capital investment is that the decisions about some fraction of the capital stock will be made by people with little or no financial experience. Maybe this will not be the disaster that some critics predict. But there is no reason to think that it will actually increase the overall return on capital.

4. If the economy doesn't produce more than it otherwise would, the Social Security privatization bonus must come from other investors, in the form of a lower return.

a) This is in fact the implicit assumption behind the notion of putting Social Security money into stocks, instead of government bonds, because stocks have a better long-term return. The bonus will come from those saps who sell the stocks and buy the bonds.

b) In other words, privatization means betting the nation's most important social program on a theory that cannot be true unless many people are convinced that it's false.

c) Even if the theory is true, initially, privatization will make it false. The money newly available for private investment will bid up the price of (and thus lower the return on) stocks, while the government will need to raise the interest on bonds in order to attract replacement money.

d) In short, there is no way other investors can be tricked or induced into financing a higher return on Social Security.

5. If the privatization bonus cannot come from the existing economy, and cannot come from growth, it cannot exist. And therefore, privatization cannot work.


Bzzzzzzzt. Wrong!

Kinsley works from two assumptions:
1. That Social Security should always be available.
2. That Social Security should always work the way it currently works.

Of course, if you look at it from his perspective, privatization looks likes a bad, unworkable idea.

I, however, work from these assumptions:

1. Social Security is the only legal pyramid scheme in this country. We pay out current recipients from current contributions. This is no way to run a retirement plan. If Wall Street offered this kind of a plan, and then ran it the way the government runs Social Security, the SEC would be all over them. Which is a moot point because no Wall Street firm would ever be allowed to run such a scheme in the first place because pyramid schemes are illegal.

2. Most people my age---thirty-four---do not believe Social Security will be available to us when we retire. We have accepted it and have planned accordingly. Moreover, we don't want Social Security to be available to us when we retire because we:

a. don't want to burden our descendants by forcing them to pay into a bankrupt system to support our aging carcasses.

b. it's our bloody money, not the government's. We're tired of dumping cash into a system that doesn't work and will not pay our grocery bill when we finally reach retirement age. Which, considering the government's habit of upping the eligibility age every few years, means I will, roughly, be around Methuselah's age when I qualify for membership.

Social Security needs a complete overhaul that will be pricey in the short term, but will enable it to survive. But an overhaul is only necessary if you believe that there is an inherent social contract between the citizen and the government to provide for a pension in the first place. I don't and that's because I don't believe the government will ever hold up its end. I don't trust the government to spend my tax dollars wisely. Why on earth would I trust my financial future to them, particularly when there are other options available?

It's all about choice. I could do a lot with the money that is currently in my Social Security account. If I lose it in a chancy investment, well, that's my fault. Like the losses we suffered in our 401K account when the market tanked a few years ago, I won't whine and moan about holding someone accountable for what was a market fluctuation. I fully understand what it means to invest in the stock market: it's about as chancy as placing your all your chips on the spin of a roulette wheel. The difference between that spin and Social Security is that I at least have a chance at a return on my investment with the roulette wheel, whereas with Social Security, I know I'm not going to ever see dime one. I'd rather take my chances with the stock market, and as it's my money, and not the government's, I fail to see where they get off denying me the opportunity to do just that. Moreover, that they would deny me this opportunity because the faulty house of cards they've built would collapse if privatization were ever to come to pass is insulting. They're covering their asses with my retirement money and that pisses me off more than Kinsley will ever know.

If Social Security were investigated by the SEC, it would be shut down in a New York Minute. I fail to see why I should be legally required to keep throwing my money into a failed system. It does no one any good in the long run to keep blathering on about the worthiness of a "social contract," when the real issue at hand is the breach of the current social contract by blatant mismanagement.


Posted by Kathy at 01:18 PM | Comments (2)

The Voices In My Head

Bill Kristol has unwittingly joined a group of accomplished individuals: people possessed of a unique speaking style, who, when they write something and I sit down to read it, I hear their voices on my own inner stereo system.

Does that make any sense? No? I'll try to simplify. When I read these pieces, I hear the author narrating them, rather than just being able to read the text. I have my own internal audio-book narrator library.

Mr. Kristol is now in league with Henry Kissinger, Margaret Thatcher and William F. Buckely, Jr. Distinct voices all. Ever tried to read one of Buckley's Blackford Oakes novels? Ever tried to focus on these works of fiction, where the character has his own unique voice, without Buckely's part English/part Connecticut-boarding-school-boy accent horning in? It's hard. Same goes for Kissinger, whose doctoral dissertation I had to read for undergrad political science coursework. I barely made it through it: not because the subject matter was boring---hardly, but rather because if there's anyone who can put you to right to sleep with the droning, monotone quality of their voice it's Henry. Maggie Thatcher gets a little annoying because she's just so righteous. You should hear her narrate the passages in The Downing Street Years devoted to trade unions. Wow, did they ever piss her off.

I just realized this as I read this WaPo piece. I am undecided about two things. First, if Rummy really needs to go as Kristol asserts. Second, if I like having him inside my head when I read his work.


{hat tip: Galley Slaves}

Posted by Kathy at 12:18 PM | Comments (0)

December 14, 2004

Topics Not To Touch With a Ten Foot Pole

But I'm gonna do it anyway. But rather with a cattle prod. Less chance of it coming back to bite me in the ass.

Everyone's favorite commie pinko appears to be in favor of abolishing the death penalty. Not because that's the right and just thing to do, but rather because it's inefficient and doesn't serve as a deterrant.

In theory, I favor capital punishment. "An eye for an eye .. a life for a life," has always seemed just to me. Deterrence? I don't know. Deterrence always sparks the most arguments. Historically, there was a practical, timely death penalty. On March 6, 1933, Guiseppe Zangara fired on FDR's motorcade, killing the mayor of Chicago, Anton Cermak. Within days he was indicted and tried. Found guilty, he was executed on March 20, two weeks after gunning down Mayor Cermak. If that's what we had now, I would favor its continuation. Prompt and consistently imposed execution might have been a deterrent.

But that is not what we have; instead we have an rarely imposed, lengthily delayed death sentence. In 2003, Amnesty Int'l reported 65 executions in the United States. How many murders in 2002? 16,204. So, if you murder someone in the United States, your chance of being executed eventually is four-tenths of one percent. "Eventually?" In Florida, a state that actually uses its electric chair, notes that the average stay on death row is almost 12 years.

Let's face it comrades, the Left has won this debate. Capital punishment has been outlawed throughout the Western world, leaving the U.S. in the dubious company of China, Iran, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, et al. Here in the U.S. death penalty opponents, in lieu of actually eliminating capital punishment, have raised nearly-insuperable obstacles to every instance of its application. Timothy McVeigh practically had to volunteer. Will Scott Peterson ever walk the green mile?

I think he's got a point. Commie pinko leanings notwithstanding.

I've lived in states where the death penalty is an option and I've lived in states where it isn't. In my experience, the death penalty is more of a political tool than it is about actually deterring people from killing other people.

You'll pardon the expression, but it's all in the execution.

It's not about right and wrong, per se, in the politicians eyes: it's about finding a way to protect their civilians. A rising crime rate, or one particularly shocking murder, will bring about the death penalty conversations and how much safer things were in the good ol' days when they had the opportunity to fry someone for a heinous crime. Some will come out strongly in favor of having the ability to execute the offender. Some will vehemently deny that the system has any right to "murder" someone, and will protest that someone who is innocent might be executed. In other words, it's all about the level of faith politicians have in the system. Death penalty advocates believe the system, despite its flaws, works. Death penalty protesters believe the system is too flawed to take such a chance.

And this argument always, it seems to me, swirls around in an atmosphere of panic and hysteria. Because we never really do talk about the death penalty when things are happy and people aren't being murdered left and right, do we? Nope. We're procrastinators: we wait until things are bad before we start speaking of it. This atmosphere does not lend itself to rational thought, hence this is precisely when the politicians jump in.

I don't know about you, but I don't want professional politicians deciding this one. Sounds undemocratic, I'm sure, but hey...someone's life is one the line here. Namely mine. If the theory behind capital punishment is that it's a deterrant, well, we're in trouble, kids. Because the American variant of capital punishment is nothing but a big waste of time and money.

The husband has done a lot of business in the Middle East. He's traveled there before and I wasn't really all that worried about his safety. Sure he might be mugged. He might lose his wallet. He might even get his western ass beat up if he crossed a group of fervent, self-flogging Shias on one of their high holy days. But would he be murdered in a back alley? Probably not. Why? Because they execute murderers in the Middle East and they don't fuck about when doing so either. Hence the murder rate is pretty damn low.

(Random aside: Wives, if your husband ever has to go to the Middle East on business, don't complain: it's better than Paris for your peace of mind. Trust me on this one. Despite what the media would tell you, you can enter, spend time in, and leave a Middle Eastern country with nary a run-in with Islamofascists. The fact that the opportunities for boozing and whoring are at an all time low in these countries is also pretty darn good for your ability to sleep, too.)

As the Commissar rightly points out, our criminals stay on death row for years, with very few actually being executed. We have people running the system who don't have to deal with death all that often, and who, it seems, are plagued with doubts. In America we worry about the individual. Our founding forefathers gave every individual rights that were to be honored, even if it means completely letting them off the hook for their crimes. This is our concept of what it means to serve the greater good. In Saudi Arabia, however, the greater good is served by executing someone swiftly if they're found guilty of murder. Different mindsets completely.

While I'm like the Commissar and approve of the death penalty in theory, it just seems our system works against the entire concept of putting someone to death for their crimes. I believe any number of individuals who have actually killed people would tell you that to be able to actually do the deed, you can't look at your intended victim as a human being. You have to lower them to the lowest common denominator to be able to kill them. They're not a person, but rather an obstacle, etc. How can we, as Americans, do this when our country is all about looking at the individual and seeing them for being just that? It's called working at cross-purposes, I believe.

If we could, as the estimable Ron White says, put in an "express lane," we'd have a punishment that provided a deterrant. What we have now, however, is anything but. But is that "American?" Well, I don't know. I'm an American and I think if you prove yourself to be such a waste of space that people have determined it's actually better to remove you from this planet, well, you probably deserve what you get, so I suppose it is. Yet...

But none of this means a damn right now, because the controversy swirling around the death penalty isn't about the worthiness of some people to live and breathe with the rest of us. It's about the worthiness of the people who sentence and carry out the punishment and if they can be trusted. Until we actually talk about whether or not it's right to take a life to prevent the deaths of many more we're not going to get anywhere on this one.

Posted by Kathy at 10:26 PM | Comments (0)

Kilts and Gore Galore!

This just doesn't sound like a good idea.

A £7 MILLION overhaul of the visitor centre at Culloden will allow the public to experience the drama and fear of taking part in the historic 18th century battle.

In a "battlefield immersion area", made possible by a theatre with floor-to-ceiling screens on both sides, visitors will be thrust into the middle of a Jacobite charge and the government troops' response.

The public will be asked to assume one of several characters in the battle and follow their fate - as they do at the Holocaust Museum in Washington DC.

Research by the US company masterminding the changes has led to the battle lines being redrawn at the site. The exhibits will put a new emphasis on the post-battle Highland Clearances and massacres, dubbed the "ethnic cleansing" of the day by some historians. They will stress that the battle was not just the Highlanders against the Redcoats, and plans are afoot for a memorial marking recently discovered graves of government soldiers who died.

The exhibition designer is Ralph Applebaum Associates, of New York, which designed Bill Clinton's £100 million presidential library which opened last month in Little Rock, Arkansas. The architect is the award- winning Glasgow firm Gareth Hoskins which designed the new architectural exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. The two companies are also working together on plans for the £70 million refit of the Royal Museum of Scotland.

The Culloden exhibition will borrow from Mr Applebaum's experience designing the Holocaust Museum. There, visitors are assigned the identity passports of people who lived, or died, in the concentration camps. At Culloden, they might be assigned to Ensign William Horne, who carried a standard into battle at the age of 14, or to Ann Leith, a woman who helped wounded Jacobites. Personal digital assistants will help them track their characters' fate.

"It's about engaging people personally with the battle, and leaving the battle as more than just visitors," Mr Applebaum said.

The "battlefield immersion area" will use live-action footage, sound, smell, "and even a bit of sleet if we can be innovative enough," said Alexander Bennett, of the National Trust of Scotland. "This will only last six minutes, because we feel this will be an emotional experience for people, and we will have to give them a warning." {...}

There was a reason, you know, the Duke of Cumberland---the English commander---earned the nickname "Butcher Billy."

The things people do to make history more "accessible." Crikeys.

Posted by Kathy at 03:39 PM | Comments (0)

Don't Forget the Outhouses


Don't forget the outhouses. Even Tiny Tim needs to gimp himself outside for a little relief every now and again.

I would also have to ask where's Bedlam? Department 56 made a huge model of Victoria Station a few years back. They should also have a model of Bedlam. Raving lunatics are so Dickensian. After all, had Ebneezer not got it together come Christmas Morning, chances are he would have wound up there.

{hat tip: the sex crazed llamas}

Posted by Kathy at 03:23 PM | Comments (0)


Laci Peterson and her unborn son were murdered on December 24, 2002.

Almost two years ago.

Her husband and the father of their child has since been found guilty of their murders and was sentenced to death yesterday.

According to the FBI, in the year 2003, out of a total 14,408 murders in the United States, 3,125 of those murder victims were women. Of those 3,125 women, 1,927 were white, just like Laci. Of those who did not look like Laci, there were 1,113 black women, 133 women who fit into the "other" category, meaning that their race was mixed and it would have been too time consuming for the FBI Statisticians to break their numbers down and 44 women whose race was "unknown," meaning God only knows what.

Also, in 2003, 573 women, out of that whopping total of 3,125 were also murdered by their husbands. Just like Laci.

The data for the year 2004 has not been totaled up yet, but from the preliminary statistics released earlier this year, while the overall percentage of murders had gone down when compared to the same period of time in 2003, it wasn't by much...and there was plenty of time between June and December for those numbers to skyrocket.

My point? Other women besides Laci friggin' Peterson have lost their lives to a murderer since she died almost two years ago.

Yet, how many of them have we heard about in this endless media circus that has surrounded Laci's disappearance and, subsequently, Scott Peterson's trial?

Not many.


Because they weren't as cute as Laci was. Odds are, even a few of them were pregnant too, but the murder of their third-trimester babies didn't prompt a national debate and federal legislation. They weren't married to the boy-next-door. They didn't have families who manipulated the media to their benefit.

Does anyone care about them?

If you watch CNN, your answer would probably be "no."

I care. While everyone is jumping on the "I'm glad that motherfucker will fry!" bandwagon, I pray for these womens' families and friends. I hope their murderers have been brought to justice and that their attackers will, too, face the death penalty.

After all, justice is served up on a daily basis even if CNN isn't there to cover it.

Posted by Kathy at 02:35 PM | Comments (0)

December 13, 2004

Take the Gun, Leave the Cannoli

Hey! The Neopolitan Mafia is giving etiquette lessons in prison!

Eat your heart out, Martha!

Posted by Kathy at 02:58 PM | Comments (0)

Omaha Boy Done Good

Alexander Payne seems to be doing rather well with the myriad movie awards that are being announced.

{Insert random story of trying to weasel in next to accomplished people here}

Now, I don't know if this is accurate or not, but my sister Susie claims Alexander grew up two blocks away from us in Omaha and that she and my brother Mike know him.

Whenever Susie goes to Omaha, she has this habit of doing drive-by's. I've been in the car with her a few times when the urge to drive-by places familiar to her hits her. It's always interesting. This past January, when everyone was in town for the parentals 50th Wedding Anniversary party, I hitched a ride back to my other sister's house with her and her family. Fortunately, Susie has a son who, at that time, had just received his license, so we were taken care of in the designated driver department.

Poor Austin. He was trying to be the only adult in the car, because the rest of us were intoxicated, and she kept thwarting his ambitions by saying, "oh, slow down!" This happened on 52nd Street, where we passed by the house she said Alexander grew up in. She also said she called our brother Mike a couple of weeks previous to ask him---at one in the morning---why he hadn't told her that the Alexander Payne who co-wote and directed About Schmidt was the same Alexander Payne they'd grown up with? Mike, being the taciturn individual that he can be, blew her off. The fact that she'd called him at one in the morning had much to do with said blowing off, I believe.

Payne has filmed most of his movies in Omaha. This is no big secret. Yet, despite the fact that part of Citizen Ruth was filmed in our old neighborhood---Dundee--- and it's been said that he grew up there as well, I didn't think anyone in my family actually, like, knew him. I can't imagine there were a lot of Alexander Payne's running around in our old neighborhood.

Hmmph. So it could be true. I'm not sure. And I don't suppose we'll ever find out because I have a hard time imagining Alexander and Susie running into one another nowadays. Yet, it's always good to point out that stranger things have happened.

Posted by Kathy at 02:34 PM | Comments (2)


I wrote yesterday that the high winds we were having didn't bode well for the rest of the day.

Well, I was wrong and right with that statement.

No snow, fortunately. However, it's currently sixteen degrees outside. And that appears to be the high for the day.

I really do wish those pesky Canadians would learn how to shut the back door to the Arctic. Highly annoying.

Posted by Kathy at 02:10 PM | Comments (1)

Oh Dear

The husband has only one thing to say to the Llamabutchers regarding their sex scandal:

Live by the photoshop. Die by the Photoshop.

That's just too damn disturbing for a Monday.

Posted by Kathy at 12:58 PM | Comments (0)

Hitting The Big Time

Gary over at Dayton v. Kennedy got linked by today's Opinion Journal.

Well done, sir!

Posted by Kathy at 12:50 PM | Comments (1)

December 12, 2004

I Rule The Earth

Ass Kicker.JPG

And if you don't watch it, I'll take a chunk out of your ass with my claws.

Granted, I'm not too hot with the pshop, but hey, that's as good as it's gonna get at this time of night.

Build your own superhero here.

(And yes, honey, those Wolverine-ish claws are for you.)

Courtesy o' Everyone's Favorite Commie Pinko

Posted by Kathy at 11:48 PM | Comments (2)

I Believe!

Margi has an excellent story about why Santa is so very important this time of year.

Go read.

I am commonly referred to in our family as the "afterthought's playmate." Meaning my older sister, Christi, is the "afterthought." There was a five year dry spell between our brother Mike and Christi. Apparently, according to family lore, Mrs. N. from down the block, after her own dry spell, had her son Jeff, and he got Mom to babylusting again. Christi owes her existence to Jeff N. It's a bit different for me, though. Eighteen months after Christi arrived, I came along, the logic behind this move being, as I understand it, hey, why not have one more while we're at it?

Christi and I have always been paired-up, as it were, because of where we line up on the family tree. That and there are eight of us, so we paired-up nicely. The fact that we're both female didn't hurt the selection process, either. We used to share a room. This was a bad idea, because as my mother puts it, "she's the sun; you're the moon." We didn't get along too well because I was an annoying younger sister and she was an infuriatingly bossy older sister. It's just the way things were. We started getting along better when we got our own rooms. Nowadays we get along splendidly. But when we were little, well...

You see, Christi has this head of flaming red hair and a milkpale complexion. I vividly remember that when she got ticked off at me when we were little, she would turn bright red. The transformation started in her cheeks. Two little red splotches would appear and then it would spread, like a rash, across her face and neck, completely drowning out the few freckles she had at that point in time in a wash of red. Her hands, however, were white as snow, clenched into fists at her sides and her knuckles were so tightly held you could see the translucent skin straining against her knobby little bones. I remember watching this transformation, more than once, and finding it so fascinating that I would completely blow off whatever she was yelling at me about. As you might imagine, my mental wandering did not please her, and she yelled at me about that, too.

One time, however, it was Santa that caused this transformation. Or rather the fact we'd missed him once again.

Christmas Eve was the coolest night of the year in our family when I was growing up. Why? you ask. Well, we opened our presents that night. Mom and Dad didn't do Christmas Day. They preferred that everyone sleep in that morning, so Christmas Eve it was. The folks used to do a lot of entertaining for my dad's job when I was younger and we always adored the food Mom would dish up for these parties, but we were never allowed to nosh on it because it was for the guests. So, Christmas Eve became the night of our cocktail party---"our" being us kids. We got the meatballs and cocktail wieners in the spicy homemade BBQ sauce which I still get a craving for this time of year. We got little ham and roast beef sandwiches. We got shrimp. And any number of other goodies that Mom would dish up.

After the Bible reading we'd nosh. We'd be subjected to Dad's brighter-than-the-face-of-the-sun movie camera lighting as he filmed the festivities. We'd then sit around and chat, just waiting for Mom to give the word. Then a mysterious errand would always pop up.

Susie would need to be picked up from work. ML would have forgotten her camera at her apartment. We needed to run to Walgreens because Mom forgot to buy film. Something needed to be run up to church. Cookies might need to be delivered to my godparents house. Or, whenever a mysterious errand couldn't be found, well, my father would take Christi and I out to look at the lights. And every year, when we returned from our errands, we'd hurry into the house, and the line our older siblings delivered was: "You just missed him! Maybe if you run really fast you can see him take off!"

Our house, supposedly, being Santa's first stop on Christmas Eve because he always went in reverse-alphabetical order to make up for all those times we Zabawas had to wait on everyone else all year long.

One year, before the dawning of the obvious, we'd returned to the house, had done the entire "You just missed him!" exercise, and, while disappointed, the loss of not seeing the Big Man himself was lessened because there were TOYS! waiting for us in the family room. We hurried down to the furnace room to remove our boots and hang up our coats. It was just Christi and me in the room and as she readied herself to go upstairs, she turned to me and it was obvious the transformation had happened.

She was furious.

Being eighteen months older than I was, the pattern had started to make itself obvious to her: we were always shuffled out of the house right when Santa was to appear. While she'd heard rumors, she didn't buy the "he doesn't exist" argument. Rather, she felt her desire to meet and chat with Santa was being thwarted by ML always forgetting her stupid camera, or Susie needing to be picked up from work, etc. It was obvious Santa showed up at our house at the same time every year. This was a fact well established in the known universe. Why, on earth, Christi reasoned, should we have to leave every time, particularly when the Big Man's schedule was apparent? It wasn't fair! After rambling on in this fashion for a while, she was dead quiet for a long minute. I just stood there and hung up my coat, not knowing what to say, but more than thankful that, for once, her ire was directed elsewhere.

"Next year," she declared loudly, breaking the silence at last, her fist raised in the air, as her face turned purple, "I'm not going anywhere! I'm staying RIGHT HERE so I can see him!" She then turned sharply, the skirt of her blue jumper swishing around her white tights, and marched out of the furnace room and up the stairs to the party. I followed.

I can still see it perfectly.

But I am now older and wiser, and realize that Santa, just like Margi said is more for parents than kids. Dad never minded driving us on "those errands." Mom never let on that there really weren't any errands to be run and was always at the top of the stairs whenever we walked through the back door, to tell us Santa was in the family room, and maybe we could catch him if we hurried. Susie, I believe, stayed late at work on Christmas Eve to provide a needed excuse to get out of the house. ML forgot her camera on purpose.

It was a conspiracy for our benefit. While I'm generally not a big believer in conspiracies and generally do my best to disabuse people of them, this is one conspiracy I'll wholeheartedly participate in.

Because, no matter how much fun Santa gives you when you're a kid, getting to be Santa is even better. Fun, fantasy, mystery, anticipation. It just doesn't get much better than that, does it? It can even be productive, too.

Just ask Christi.

A couple of years ago, in early December, her son, James, was whining about having to clear up the basement of toys. He was told to throw out the ones he didn't want anymore. Of course this is the hardest task assigned to any child: they never want to give anything up. Christi simply replied that Santa had emailed her to remind her to make room for all the new toys that he'd be delivering come Christmas.

James bought it, hook, line and sinker, and started cleaning up like a madman.

Santa has always been good. That's why I believe.

Posted by Kathy at 10:05 PM | Comments (5)


Around five o'clock this morning the wind kicked up here in Cake Eater Land. Or so the husband says. I was blissfully conked out so I missed it.

Until I woke up, when I took a look out the front window at our barren yard to see that the lid to the neglected Victorian-ish lamppost had been completely blown off the lamp and was lying on the ground, three feet away from the base.

This thing is made out of heavy wrought iron. Granted all the bolts that are supposed to hold it in place are missing, because it's one more thing Tweedledumb and the Great White Hunter landlord neglect around here, but it's never flown off before in a heavy wind.

The husband ran out there a little while ago and put it back on the lamp. Taking a cue from Tweedledumb, he secured it with twigs, rather than with nuts and bolts from his own private stash, which he is loathe to share with the management of this fine house we live in.

I can only think that this does not bode well for the rest of the day. There were snow flurries a little while ago, but they've subsided...for the time being. On the tree branch outside of my office window, a pleasantly plump (read wide arsed) squirrel was attempting to shield himself from the wind by huddling next to the trunk and wasn't having much luck with it as the tree is swaying perilously. He has since disappeared. I assume he took to ground, realizing that hanging out in a tree, twenty-feet off the ground, perhaps isn't the best place to find shelter in a windstorm.

Fortunately, I have only one errand to run this afternoon: to go and buy smokes. Which I will do shortly. Just to get it over with.

Have I mentioned lately how much I despise winter?

Posted by Kathy at 01:03 PM | Comments (0)

December 11, 2004

The Official Cake Eater 2004 Weblog Awards Endorsements

I have one more day left to curry favor with (read suck up to) certain blogs who are nominated for the 2004 Weblog Awards.

Not like it matters, because I have all the pull of a mouse trying to haul an elephant around, but here are my endorsements.

(And, no, I'm not running through every category. Sheesh. It's like you people think I have nothing better to do with my time.)

Best Humor Blog: Protein Wisdom I'm endorsing Jeff mainly because I'm scared of what he'll do if he doesn't win. He seems kind of desperate.

That and he's actually funny. No one can elicit more spontaneous giggle fits from me than Jeff.

And what the $#@k is Scrappleface anyway?

Submit your Vote for Protein Wisdom Here.

Best Culture Blog: Big shocker here: The Llama Butchers.

They're my buds. Do you need any more reason to go and vote for them? I didn't think so, but just in case, know that, between Steve-o and Robbo, you get a pretty good impression of what an eighteenth-century Tory on crack would have been like.

You know, had crack been available during that era.

Submit your vote for the Butchers here.

Best Essayist: Another shocker: Lileks

Not because he's good or anything, but because he's my neighbor. Ya have to be friendly to your neighbors.

Submit Your Vote For Lileks Here.

Best Online Community: Munuviana

Besides sucking up to Pixy, this group blog saved the husband's chestnuts from roasting while he put this site together.

Submit Your Vote for Munuviana Here

Best Australian or New Zealand Blog: God Himself.

Vote for Ambient Irony Here.

Best of the Top 2500-3500 Blogs: Potomac Ponderings.

Because she's good and I'm taking this category from her next year!

Vote for Potomac Ponderings Here.

I'm sure there are other deserving potential recipients, but I'm in need of a nap, so they'll have to scrape up their much needed votes elsewhere. If you've got a deserving nominee that I haven't listed---or aren't familiar with, because there are a lot bloggers out there---feel free to throw them in the comments.

Posted by Kathy at 02:53 PM | Comments (3)

All Politics Is Local

For all the time and effort I expend on covering Minnesota's political scene, you, my devoted Cake Eater Readers, would think that I wasn't very interested in the whole thing.

And you would be right.

I have absolutely no tolerance for Minnesota politics. It bores me to tears because it's so damn predictable. Once in a long while you'll get a Jesse Ventura who will make things interesting, but for the most part...pfft. You have your DFL'ers, who want socialism. You have your Republicans who are cheesed at anything the DFL'ers want and who have just enough clout to ensure a deadlock at the legislature. It's just so, so...boring. Every legislature session is exactly the same. There's nothing new in this battle of (supposed) wits that makes me want to pay attention. About the most worked up I ever got about Minnesota politics was wondering whether or not to yell at Ted Mondale (Former Met Council Chair and ex-VP's son) and Mike Erlandson (the State DFL Chair and a major brownnoser) as they worked out on the elliptical machines next to me at my old health club. I opted not to. It would have been too much work and I was out of breath as it was.

But I do pay some attention, because I live here. The fact that the state is trending right and will eventually go majority Republican, despite our much vaunted Scandahoovian Socialist roots, is also interesting. With a 77% turnout, Kerry only won the state by 98,000 votes. Which really isn't interesting to people who don't live here and assume we are, indeed, a bastion of Scandahoovian-rooted liberality. But if you do live here, you would have assumed simply by the biased coverage we get from our newspapers that it should have been a much greater spread.

But there is interesting news on the political front regarding Senator Dayton's re-election effort and who Normy Boy (TM) is---potentially---endorsing as his opponent.

Courtesy of First Ring, who apparently snuck into Normy Boy's (TM) fundraiser in St. Paul the other night:

{...}Not to be undone in the speculations market, Coleman also offered an endorsement, of sorts, to Congressman Mark Kennedy, on the U.S. Senate campaign in 2006.

”I’m an ambitious guy and I think that ambition is okay. I have one ambition that I’d like you to help me with and that’s to become Minnesota’s senior senate in 2006. I saw Mark Kennedy tonight…and I think Mark is one of those people who could make that possible.” Coleman’s comments were loudly cheered with shouts of “Senator Kennedy” from individuals in the room. The Second District’s John Kline also said a few words, indirectly endorsing Kennedy when asked who he thought the Republican nominee would be against Evacuatin’ Dayton.

Kennedy himself was mum on the subject. That may change sooner rather than later.

Ruminations on the possibility of this after the jump.

Now, I don't know if Mark Kennedy has a snowball's chance in hell in defeating Dayton.

And I write that wishing it were otherwise.

Dayton bought his senate seat. He is one of many heirs to the Dayton department store fortune (now, conveniently, called Marshall Fields). Dayton's also owned Target there for a time, and Mervyn's California before they went belly-up. So, he's got his own cash. During his 2000 run, he threw just about every dime he had into advertising. Literally there was not a time you could turn on a local TV station and not be bombarded with ads about Dayton. The pro-Dayton ads outnumbered the anti-Dayton ads, just a rough guess, but by about three to one. It was disgusting. He was also elected because Rod Grams, the Republican incumbent, received little to no party support and because his son, Morgan, had had more than a fair share of problems with the law during the summer of 2000. Rod just didn't have a prolonged fight in him, and Dayton bludgeoned him into defeat. Hence Dayton won by advocating whatever his bosses in the DFL told him to endorse. He brought no unique ideas to the fore: he was simply there to take a senate seat back from the Republicans. You could have inserted any other candidate into the race in his place and the words and message would have exactly been the same. Dayton won out because he had the bucks and the connections.

So, it should be noted that Dayton's fairly canny. He got himself elected to the senate. Yet, what has he done with his time in office? Well, I'll be damned if I know. I know he was Wellstone's lackey, and supported every single thing Wellstone did. If Wellstone had a press conference, you could guarantee that Dayton was standing right beside him. He campaigned for Wellstone's reelection effort, but has pretty much been operating without a compass since his political mentor died. How else to explain why he closed his office because he was afraid of terrorist attacks in Washington? Wellstone would never have done any such thing: he would have known it was political suicide.

Do I think that all of these detractors make him a target to be taken down in 2006? And by Mark Kennedy, no less?

Nope. Sorry, just don't think it's going to happen.

Mark Kennedy, I'm sorry to say, has never overwhelmed me.
While no one in our Congressional delegation has thrilled me, he seems extraordinarily lame and lacking in charisma. He may actually get things done in Washington, but as he's not my congressman, I don't really know. What I do know about Kennedy is that he had to fight to get to Congress each and every time he ran for office. His first time out was a recall win and he just barely slid into office. His second time out, well, the DFL'ers in the legislature gerrymandered his district, so it was contentious, but he won. The third time out, the DFL chose Patty Wetterling to run against him and threw a boatload of cash into the race to get her elected. If you don't know who Patty Wetterling is, know that her son Jacob was abducted and she has since become something of a local celebrity as a result. Even though she was the lamest candidate known to mankind, and Kennedy eventually won, the DFL managed to make it a race where no race should have existed. It's apparent that the DFL does not like Kennedy. They've got an axe to grind where he is concerned and if he chose to run against Dayton in 2006, well, they'd throw the whole ball of wax at him.

Have I mentioned how DFL'ers have never really gotten over Wellstone's death and Mondale's defeat by Normy Boy (TM) in 2002? I haven't? Well, that should probably be mentioned because it will be a big motivator in the upcoming race. While the rest of us watched Wellstone's memorial service with mouths agape and shock on our faces, there are many, many people here who thought there was absolutely nothing wrong with what occurred that night. I should know: I live next to a few of them. They have Wellstone-green stickers on their cars that declaim, "Never Park the Bus!" They kept their Wellstone yard signs up for months, if not close to a year. They donate money to Wellstone politician training camps. They are pissed off that Normy Boy (TM) is in office and they will come out in full force in 2006 and will be chomping at the bit to get their idol's political comrade in arms re-elected. And you can bet your last dollar that Dayton will be counting on them: it's the one quid pro quo he's earned while he's been in office.

Is this an insurmountable task for Kennedy? I don't think so, particularly not if he's got Normy Boy(TM) in his corner. Norm's got a lot of clout. But wil Norm's ringing endorsement be enough to get Kennedy over the hump and into Minnesota's junior senator's seat?

I don't think so. I hope otherwise, but I think it's a doomed attempt for Kennedy. It's too much, too soon. He's barely consolidated himself in his congressional district. Every election he's ever been involved with has had problems, which leads one to wonder, exactly, whom does he have running his campaigns? Issues that other incumbents would have never been confronted with, Kennedy has to battle through time and again. Would he be bright enough to hire more seasoned staff? There are more questions than answers at this point in time. I seriously hope the Republicans aren't betting the farm on Kennedy being the one to take Dayton down.

{hat tip: Dayton v. Kennedy, a blog devoted to the defeat of Mark Dayton, run by the estimable Gary Matthew Miller. Not dissing your political wishes, Gary. I just think it's doomed.)

Posted by Kathy at 01:46 PM | Comments (0)


It appears to be official: Yushchenko is a victim of poisoning.

{...} A series of tests run over the past 24 hours provided conclusive evidence of the poisoning, Zimpfer said.

"There is no doubt about the fact that Mr. Yushchenko's disease — especially following the results of the blood work — has been caused by a case of poisoning by dioxin," Zimpfer said.

The 50-year-old opposition leader first fell ill in September and was rushed to the Vienna hospital. He resumed campaigning later in the month but his mysterious illness had left his face pockmarked and ashen.

Yushchcenko also suffered back pain, acute pancreatitis and nerve paralysis on the left side of his face.

He has accused Ukrainian authorities of trying to poison him ahead of Ukraine's presidential vote — an allegation they have denied.

"We suspect involvement of an external party, but we cannot answer as to who cooked what or who was with him while he ate," Zimpfer said, adding that tests showed the dioxin was taken orally.

Zimpfer said Yushchenko's blood and tissue registered concentrations of dioxin — one of the most toxic chemicals — that were 1,000 times above normal levels.

"It would be quite easy to administer this amount in a soup," Zimpfer said.

So, persons unknown dumped dioxin into his soup in an attempt to poison him.

What I want to know is this: are we going to be going back to the days of food testers? You know what I'm talking about: some expendable soul being forced to eat the King's food to see if it's been poisoned? Are we really back to that?

Posted by Kathy at 12:21 PM | Comments (0)

December 10, 2004

Tales of A Metal Head Wife

Two days ago, the former lead guitarist for Pantera was shot and killed by some nutjob who was upset that the band had broken up. Michele objects to lumping this act in with heavy metal's already tarnished image, because, as she puts it, heavy metal's image isn't tarnished at all:

{...}As with any news story that blames music, video games or movies for someone's criminal, deranged actions, the media misses one glaring point: in order for the killer to react in such a manner, he had to have some serious, deep rooted issues that go way beyond the music he listened to, the games he played or the movies he watched.

Metal has long been a favorite whipping boy of the hypersensitive, shallow-thinking My Morals Should Be Your Morals set. From the time Ozzy first barked at the moon, metal was imprinted with a warning label: This music is hazardous to your children. Freaked out parents and sociologists looked much deeper into the music than was necessary and proclaimed the genre as one that would cause its listeners to sign up for the church of Satan or become zombies in an army of juvenile delinquents.

You would think that when all these years later Ozzy became the darling of television and looked upon as a sweet, if dopey, father figure, the world would have figured out - albeit belatedly - that heavy metal is as much a theatrical act as Britney's original virginal persona.

Yet every media commentary I've read this morning on the death of Abbot has the same underlying tone - live by the sword, die by the sword. Metal is music for misfits, don't you know? What can you expect from the fans of a band whose lyrics are all unprintable in a family paper? They were heathens, I tell you! They drank and smoked and cursed! It's all so shrill and so unnerving.

{...}Of course, they will point to Abbott's nickname of Dimebag. They'll look at the Pantera DVDs and a see bunch of hard drinking, hard partying guys. And they'll conclude "the metal lifestyle is a dangerous one." And tomorrow on Page Six, there will pictures of some pop music princess with a bottle in her hand and her tits hanging out of her dress or a some boy band star holding a bottle of Jack Daniels and spitting at the camera. But, hey. They're just having fun, right? Pop Stars Gone Wild! What a riot! Give that guy some long hair and a guitar and suddenly he's a wild eyed beast who wants to eat your children.

It's not just the music of heavy metal that's misunderstood. The fans also get their share of the lies and distortion. We're all emotionally disturbed individuals with deep psychological problems, bad parents and broken homes who draw pentagrams on their bedroom floors and torture the neighbor's cats.{...}

Now, I'm not a metal listener above and beyond being subjected to listening to the husband's---a metal head---choices on the WinAmp. Quite frankly, I don't like much of it. But there are some albums I never would have listened to in the pre-husband-era that I do listen to now. I will out myself as one who actually likes Metallica's Black Album. I've learned over the years that, in the metal head community, this opinion means I'm actually a poser. If I were actually interested in what that community thought about me, I would have uttered that Kill 'Em All was the penultimate Metallica album. Never mind that the Black Album slams and actually, you know, sounds good (as in it's technically proficient and they made their music sound good in the studio). I'm a poser. Whatever. I'm not misguidedly seeking metal head community props. I like what I like, and I like melody when it comes to my music. Metal does not focus on melody. Kill 'Em All hurts my ears, grates on my nerves and sounds like musical vomit.

Yet, being married to a metal head is instructive in breaking down the prejudices associated with metal. I've learned over the years that, ahem, the people who listen to metal really are normal individuals. The husband's normal. His friends are normal. They just like to jam out and metal is the music they prefer for such an activity. They don't bite the heads off bats; they don't play Judas Priest albums backwards to find secret messages from the devil. What they do, however, is to play air guitar and headbang, wishing they still had their long hair from the olden days. They find something redeeming in this music. While I don't necessarily understand their choice of music, I can at least understand the passion in this music that they find compelling.

Say whatever you want, metal is chock-a-block full of passion. While, to my ears, it's not passion for sounding incredible, but rather for creating a lot of noise, it's nonetheless obvious that metal artists are in it because that's the sound they're passionate about. That passion spreads to the listeners. I can't deny anyone the opportunity to be passionate about music, which is why I--mostly---tolerate the husband's choice in music. This passion is also why I think metal heads--bands and fans alike---get a bad rap. No one is passionate about Britney Spears except for oodles of teenage girls and pedophiles needing someone to fill their off hours. Yet there are plenty of metal heads out there who, as they age, are still big fans of slamming guitar riffs and screamed lyrics. I believe this freaks people out. It's one thing for some teenager who's already depressed about their social situation to start listening to angry-sounding metal music, but an adult? Nope. You're supposed to have outgrown that sort of thing by the time you hit twenty-one. I know this because I alwaysthought that the husband would outgrow his metal compulsions. He hasn't. He's thirty-four and I'm just as liable to come across him slamming his hands on his desk in a Neal Peart impersonation nowadays as when we were younger.

For a time, I despaired of this behavior. Now I see it as a good thing. While he objects less to Sarah McLachlan these days, he hasn't lost track of his hard rock roots. After all, he was a member of the KISS Army when he was seven-years-old: he has serious roots. I don't listen to the same things as I did when I was seven...but the husband does. He about orgasmed himself a year ago when Mr. H. gave him a KISS greatest hits CD for his birthday. Does that make him more advanced than I am, simply because I had a thing for Shaun Cassidy in the first grade? I don't know. But I do know that if you find your passion early, like the husband did, it's probably worse to dump it in an effort "to grow up" than it is to embrace that passion for the rest of your life.

No matter how stupid you look when you headbang and play air-drums.

Posted by Kathy at 03:10 PM | Comments (1)

Internet Navel-gazing

Much like the crack young staff of the Hatemonger's Quarterly, I whined a bit about not being nominated for any 2004 Weblog Awards.

Apparently, however, they've gotten over their angst and they suggest that the rest of us do the same:

{...}And this brings us to another topic. It seems to us as if the 2004 Weblog Awards have inspired a ridiculous amount of e-malaise on the part of “webloggers” everywhere. Erstwhile talented “webloggers,” due to the introduction of the “weblog” awards, have been nattering on about some sort of existential crisis they are enduring.

Now that my “website” has or has not been nominated for such awards, say manifold “webloggers,” I simply can’t go on. I’ve lost that e-loving feeling. “Weblogging” just doesn’t have the beauty, the purity with which I used to associate it.

To which we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” respond: Get over yourself, Sartre. You are an indigent hack who wastes endless hours penning posts that will be read by three people and a mule. And two of the people will have stumbled upon your “website” by mistake, whilst hunting for Internet pornography.

So let’s not pretend that your foray into unpaid pseudo-journalism has lost its magic just because your “website” has suddenly attracted four people and two mules.

Be done with picking the belly-button lint, says the crack young staff of "The Hatemonger's Quarterly." It's apparently not attractive and you really won't like what you find on the end of your finger.

Wiser words have never been written about the fine art of blogging.

Posted by Kathy at 12:15 AM | Comments (1)

December 09, 2004

You Can't Make This Stuff Up

Bill Moyers is retiring from TV journalism.

And I quote:

"I'm going out telling the story that I think is the biggest story of our time: how the right-wing media has become a partisan propaganda arm of the Republican National Committee," says Moyers. "We have an ideological press that's interested in the election of Republicans, and a mainstream press that's interested in the bottom line. Therefore, we don't have a vigilant, independent press whose interest is the American people."

{Insert maniacally gleeful cackling here}

Whooo-boy. {Insert ab pain here from laughing too hard}

By all means, Bill. Keep hunting that peyote out in Big Bend National Park . The results are just hysterical!

UPDATE Steve-o has more on Bill Moyer's peyote habit.

Posted by Kathy at 11:35 PM | Comments (0)


Oh, joy. The politics of keeping Kofi Annan in charge so we can get to the bottom of the Oil for Food catastrophe.

{...}In what the US State Department said was a carefully orchestrated message, US ambassador John Danforth voiced confidence in the embattled Annan at a time when Washington needs UN help to organise Iraqi elections next month.

"We are not suggesting the resignation or pushing for the resignation of the secretary general," said Danforth, whose previous non-commital remarks had set off speculation that Washington wanted Annan's ouster.

"No one, to my knowledge, has cast doubt on the personal integrity of the secretary general. No one. And we certainly don't," he said. "We are expressing confidence in the secretary general and in his continuing in office."

US President George W. Bush had also declined to speak out in favour of Annan, who has been buffeted by a string of embarrassing UN scandals and targeted with calls for resignation by some US lawmakers.

While other nations were quick to defend Annan, the United States -- the lone superpower that pays more into the UN budget than any other nation -- had been conspicuously silent.

I mean, that's the only logical conclusion I can come to other than to help Tony Blair in his upcoming elections.


It just reeks of quid pro quo, doesn't it? Bleh.

Posted by Kathy at 11:27 PM | Comments (0)

Get Yer Padded Butts Back To The Table

And give me my hockey, damnit!

Posted by Kathy at 12:46 PM | Comments (1)

Is Anybody Else Watching Lost?

I'm completely hooked on this show.

It's completely fascinating and, given that I don't know what it would actually be like to be stranded on a deserted (hmmm?) island, I have to think it's fairly realistic.

Except for last night. If you didn't see it, I won't spoil it for you and will put my ruminations after the jump.

Ok, so what's the deal with Charlie coming back to life after being hanged?

Now, it's not so much that he was revived that I'm having issues with, it's that he was able to talk---in his normal voice---after hanging from a rope for God only knows how long.

He shouldn't have been able to breathe normally, let alone talk. The tissues in anyone's throat are very sensitive to any sort of damage. My voice has changed simply from smoking. I can't imagine what someone who's experienced a long drop from a short rope would sound like---if they managed to survive the whole neck breaking thing in the first place.

When Jack tried to revive Charlie, the thought that was racing through my head was Tracheotomy! Tracheotomy! Slit that windpipe open and put a ball point pen to use, my friend!! But, no. Slamming repeatedly on Charlie's chest was apparently enough to get him to the breathing stage, and then, miraculously, he was able to get enough wind into his lungs simply by inhaling. The tissues in Charlie's throat should have been swollen beyond recognition; he wouldn't have been able to get any air in through his trachea because of said swelling. Even if Jack could have gotten Charlie's heart beating, that would have been secondary to clearing a path for air.

But apparently the path was just fine.

Hmmmm. Doesn't make sense, and perhaps I'm being overly picky because it is a TV show. But still...this appears to be one thing a doctor should have known, and yet the doctor didn't.

(And in case you're wondering how I know so much about the medical aftereffects of hanging, go buy this novel. There's a hanging scene in it that's on par with the drowning description in A Perfect Storm. I've met the author and her protagonist is a doctor who is the primary care physician for the hanging victim. Diana researched hanging effects, like everything else she writes, quite thoroughly. I also know she didn't exaggerate, either, because she told me (and a few other people) as much when we met with her. She said, quite simply, that she didn't have to exaggerate it; that there was rarely anything worse than surviving a hanging.

Posted by Kathy at 11:10 AM | Comments (3)

New and Improved!

Welcome, one and all, to the new and improved Cake Eater Chronicles. Now with 50% more Cleaning Power!

Well, not really, but I think you get the gist.

It will become apparent to those of you who have been reading me for some time that this will be the same old Cake Eater Chronicles, just with a different look and location. I've moved on up, but as I already live on the east side of Cake Eater Land, it's not really that much of a move in terms of content.

Nonetheless, I'm glad you found your way over here and I would ask you to bear with me for the next couple of days (perhaps weeks) while I get the hang of Movable Type, because this thing has some serious functionality. Be patient and be kind, and if I screw something up hugely, by all means, chime in and let me know about it. While I might regret this statement later on, it should be said that this blog is nothing without its readers, who have a vast amount of knowledge that I'm really looking forward to taking part of now that I have a non-anal-probe-like comments section.

As far as the technical stuff is concerned:

1. The husband informs me that this page should render properly in both IE and Firefox. He believes it should render properly in Netscape, as well, but he's not sure about that. He has no ideas about Opera, either. If it's not working for you, with your browser, please let me know and we'll try to fix the problem.

2. You'll have noticed that there are a few new additions to the blogroll. Check them out at your leisure. Also, check out my fellow Munuvians as well. There's lots of quality reading available to you, my devoted Cake Eater Readers.

3. The archives from the old blogspot home should be transferred by the end of the day today. If not, they'll be up here sometime soon.

4. Finally, enjoy the new site. I'm really looking forward to taking advantage of all the new bells and whistles this site affords me. There will be some learning to do, but I shall bravely attempt it so I can run this thing without constantly asking the husband for help. And speaking of the husband, many thanks go out to him for putting this site together for me. I literally could not have done this without him. Also, many thanks to the God of Munuviana, Pixy Misa, for all of his hard work and unbelievable generosity in helping bloggers get the hell off Bugsplat.

With all that out of the way, let me welcome you to the New Cake Eater Chronicles! I hope you enjoy your visits!

Posted by Kathy at 09:18 AM | Comments (4)

December 08, 2004

Well, So Far So Good, Eh?

This is another test. You need not adjust your set. I'm just trying to figure out what two posts look like on this blog.

That is all.

Posted by Kathy at 10:44 PM | Comments (1)

December 06, 2004

Do Not Adjust Your Set

There's absolutely nothing wrong with your boober.

It's fine.

The problem is the idiot who's programming the content for your boober. because she has absolutely no clue as to what she's doing. As if this didn't already prove that point, eh? It's like stating the obvious, isn't it?

Fortunately, she's educamable. She learns real well, if not being a little slow on the uptake.

Posted by Kathy at 04:22 PM | Comments (0)