Thursday, March 27, 2008
Why won't you listen to me?
Yesterday, I had to give blood for a retest to make sure my dosage of a prescription is correct.

I didn't have to see the doctor or get undressed, I merely needed to give a blood sample.

And, I honestly expected it to not take more than 5 minutes.

Alas, I was wrong.

I got to the lab and the nurse told me to have a seat. I then explained to her that they always take the blood out of my hand. Nobody can ever find my veins in my arm - I am accostomed to this and always give the nurse/lab tech a head's up. Most of them say "okay" and grab the butterfly. And then, zipideedodah, we are done.

This nurse, however, decided to disregard my warning. She spent three or four minutes - per arm - poke poke poking and prod prod prodding, slap slap slapping while I pump pump pumped my fist. All to no avail.

Much as I had warned her, I might add.

"Well, I guess we'll have to take it from the hand then..."

No shit, Sherlock.

Now, I don't enjoy giving blood to begin with, and maybe this nurse was new, I don't know. I do know, however, that it hurt like a bitch when she let the needle jump up and create a tent under my skin...

Really glad that's over with and done.
posted by Phoenix | 11:27 AM | 2 comments

On Being a Friend...and Needing One
Last night, after a hellish visit to the doctor's office to give a sample for a blood test, I stopped off at a local coffee shop to visit with a friend. I mistakenly thought that my friend had requested the meeting to talk shop (we are both involved in the same volunteer effort). It turns out that she just really needed some time with a friend.

She moved to the area about 18 months ago and still hasn't made any friends. Part of this is due to the fact that she's a mother to three boys ranging from teenage to toddler in age. It is also due to the fact that she works fulltime as a teacher and then does all of this volunteering on top of everything else. Not a lot of time for socializing in her schedule.

As a matter of fact, we only met through the volunteering thing, though we've become good friends through working together and discovering how much we have in common.

I listened to her and we talked for three hours, the time passing very quickly. Part of being a real friend is just being there, listening to another person and giving them the support that they need. I was glad to be there for her.

But, it all made me realize how lonely I feel at times. Don't get me wrong: I have wonderful friends. But sometimes, I suppose I'd just like someone who had similar views. I love my friends, but all too often I feel like a bug under glass with them. I'm an oddity to them, something to be investigated, captured, and pinned to the board. At least, that's how I feel sometimes.

I know I'm a bit different. My background, my life experiences, are not what people are used to here. I have a nasty habit of voicing my opinion with great frequency and vehemence. It is a credit to my friends that they are my friends, I think. Even so, I sometimes feel like that hair that won't lay flat. It is depressing.
posted by Phoenix | 9:26 AM | 1 comments

Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Bossy Little Thing
It should come as no surprise to those who know me, but Bunny Boop is becoming quite a bossy little thing, with a very distinct opinion on just about everything.

Her new two favorite words are "no" and "why"? Heaven help us!

"No" is usually said with a certainty that leaves no room for debate. She says it calmly, but forcefully. It is clear she has heard this word a lot in her short life.

"Why?" is usually said in a whiny tone as in "why me?". It is quite humorous actually to tell someone that SpongeBob went to bed and to hear the response come back as a pitiful question.


"He was tired. Bob gets tired, just like you do."


Such a little drama queen.

But, for all of the drama, she's also very resolute. She's a strong little thing, capable of managing the 10-lb pull on our SubZero refrigerator. Of course, she can't reach all of the shelves...but that doesn't stop her.

Just last night, she said "Mom!" and pulled me in the direction of the kitchen. She got there first and opened the refrigerator door. I wasn't coming along fast enough to satisfy her, so she said "MOM!" and swung her arm out and back to her side, indicating that I needed to beat feet to her location.

I know where she got this, of course.

I am the guilty party.

She is learning her bossy behavior from my example.

I didn't know whether to laugh or correct her behavior! On the one hand, it was terribly funny. On the other hand...Oh my gawd! She's such a little Hitler!

Still, she makes me happy...


posted by Phoenix | 1:12 PM | 0 comments

Goodbye Jericho
The season finale, and possibly the series finale, of Jericho aired last night.

The writers did an amazing job of wrapping up all of the loose ends. All too often when writers do this, it feels forced. But last night? Not so much. There was plenty of the action we have come to expect and, while certain storylines were wrapped up to a great extent, the greater story still looms large, leaving an opening for a potential third season.

I'll miss this wacky show, if they cancel it. I hope they don't, if for no other reason than I am sick to death of so-called "reality" tv.

You can still watch the episodes at CBS, by the way.
posted by Phoenix | 10:33 AM | 0 comments

SCOTUS Watch: Medellin v. Texas
I do not claim to be a Constitutional Law scholar (unlike Barack Hussein Obama, apologist for racists and terrorists), but I am glad to see the Supreme Court come down on the side of reason on Medellin v. Texas.

In case you are unaware, Medellin v. Texas is the criminal case of Jose Ernesto Medellin who was convicted in Texas of rape and murder. Medellin was found guilty in a Texas state court and was sentenced to death. And thus began his appeals process.

The issue that took him to the Supreme Court is not one that he brought up in his original trial, and yet, it bears on international relations and international courts. You see, Medellin is an illegal alien. He came to the United States illegally, and then chose to spend his time in the US breaking her laws and committing crimes against her law-abiding citizens.

But, Medellin argued, the State of Texas refused him access to his country's consular officials. Essentially, the argument goes, that being denied access to Mexican diplomats flies in the face of international courts and treaties. The World Court says that people arrested abroad are entitled to this diplomatic counsel. Muddying the waters in the dispute is the fact that President Bush sent a memo to Texas requesting that the courts give effect to the World Court in this matter.

Fifty other illegal aliens on death row, all also denied diplomatic counsel, have been waiting on tenterhooks to see if the Supreme Court would rule for a new trial for Medellin (and them as well by default).

Unfortunately for these individuals, but fortunate for States' Rights, the Supreme Court found in favor of Texas.

The Court found, quite rightly I believe, that the President doesn't get to send a memo and interfere in state justice matters, at least not without an act of Congress. There were no other issues with Medellin's criminal trial, and so the court seems to indicate that state justice must not be intruded upon by the world court. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the decision that the Executive Branch may not "establish binding rules of decision that pre-empt contrary state law."
All told, this is great news for States Rights as it recognizes that the ruling law of this land is the Constitution and the laws enacted by Congress, not the whimsies of an international body.

In my opinion, Medellin's argument was weakened by one single fact - his illegal status in this country. I could see the validity of his claims had Medellin been in this country legally. Had he gone through the legal steps and proper procedures of entering the United States, I would say that he is eligible for such diplomatic counsel as a courtesy, but not as any sort of binding legal element. However, the fact that he showed little respect for this country's laws disinclines me to grant him any special privileges.

From all accounts, he came to this country illegally by choice and as such, has eschewed any claim to the counsel of a country he has unlawfully departed. Indeed, by coming to this country illegally, one could argue that he committed fraud, claiming lawful US citizenship. In my opinion, he should be made to sleep in the bed he made for himself. Indeed, he seems to prefer the US to his native home of Mexico, so claiming some sort of status after his hand has been caught in the cookie jar...has no merit in my eyes.

The individual justice systems in the 50 states, as well as that of the Federal Government, are among the most fair and defendant-friendly in the world. Claiming an inequity because he was denied access to a diplomat is simply ridiculous. He had legal counsel, likely paid for by Texas taxpayers, and that is what matters. He had the regular rights afforded to all defendants in Texas justice; claiming an exemption or special status because you broke immigration laws as well doesn't sit well with me.

The MSM, in its liberal bias way, is painting this SCOTUS decision as a defeat for President Bush. However, the Bush Administration didn't so much agree with the World Court as much as they tried to enforce it. And, insofar as "enforcement" goes, a memo is kind of weak.

I don't really think their heart was in it.

So, less than a failure for the Bush Administration, this is a victory for the states who have just been given notice that the Supreme Court, and, more importantly, international courts, will not be permitted to arbitrarily interfere in the states' criminal prosecutions. Good news!

There is also a take-home message for illegal aliens too: Come to this country illegally, commit crimes to harm US Citizens, you are going to be treated to the full effect of criminal justice.

Much more to be found on this matter at SCOTUSblog.


posted by Phoenix | 9:14 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, March 20, 2008
Cartoon Controversy Lingers On
Did you know that Kurt Westergaard, the cartoonist who depicted the prophet Mohammed as wearing a bomb in his turban, one of the cartoons published in Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten that quite literally set the Muslim world ablaze, is still in hiding, in fear for his life?

So much for Muslim tolerance, eh? Not real quick to pick up on basic human rights like freedom of speech, these people.

I'm mostly posting this for Stepstool, who once did a presentation on this matter, hoping she'll pick up on the update and READ THE LINKS.

Last month the Danish police arrested two Tunisians and a Dane of Moroccan descent on charges of plotting to kill Mr. Westergaard, one of the 12cartoonists whose pictures of Muhammad in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten sparked protests, some of them violent, by Muslims around the world in 2006 and put bounties on the heads of Mr. Westergaard and his editor, Flemming Rose. Mr. Westergaard (he drew Muhammad with a bomb in his turban) has been in hiding ever since.


In the days shortly after, 17 Danish newspapers, having declined to publish the offending cartoons two years ago, declared solidarity with Mr. Westergaard and printed them. This, naturally, provoked a fresh round of protests from Gaza to Indonesia.

In Egypt the speaker of the Parliament claimed Danes had violated the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which seemed a little rich coming just a few weeks after the European Parliament, which itself complained about the cartoons’ re-publication, condemned Egypt for the sorry state of its human rights.

Meanwhile demands in Afghanistan for the instant withdrawal of Danish troops under NATO’s command and the severing of all diplomatic ties with Denmark caused Denmark’s foreign minister, Per Stig Moeller, to reply that it was becoming difficult for him “to put Danish soldiers’ lives in danger” to support a country “where one is at risk to be condemned to death for values that we believe to be an inseparable part of democracy and the modern world.”

And, of course, in time for the prophet's birthday and in recognition of the fifth anniversary of the quite right toppling of the dictator Saddam Hussein, who used chemical weapons on his own people, funded a pay-to-die program for suicide bombers, provided safe haven to al Qaeda, and had terrorist training camps (including Salman Pak, of course) of his very own where he quite literally trained people to kill Americans and Jews, we have a new message from Osama bin Laden.

"You went overboard in your unbelief and freed yourselves of the etiquettes of dispute and fighting and went to the extent of publishing these insulting drawings," he said, according to a transcript released by the SITE Institute, another U.S. group that monitors terror messages. "This is the greater and more serious tragedy, and reckoning for it will be more severe."


Bin Laden dismissed as "excuses" Europe's citing of freedom of expression to justify the publishing of the cartoons.

"If there is no check on the freedom of your words, then let your hearts be open to the freedom of our actions," according to the transcript.

What a gasbag.

Interestingly, this new message provides no real evidence that the asshole is still living. The controversy is two years old and nothing in the message dates past December 2006. He may be wormfood!

Now there's a warm fuzzy!
posted by Phoenix | 10:09 AM | 0 comments

More on Obama

It still bothers me that he won't wear the pin or show respect to the flag or anthem.

h/t: Ace

posted by Phoenix | 9:46 AM | 0 comments

Wednesday, March 19, 2008
Wish I'd Written That...
Sorry, but I must link and excerpt this delightful article on Monsieur Obama. (Emphasis mine.)

No one who's wandered through an Obama rally and heard the war whoops and seen the cheerful, vacant gazes would come away thinking, "These are the smartest people ever." I'm sorry, they just aren't. What is unmistakable is the creepy kind of solipsism and the air of self-congratulation that clings to his campaign. "There is something happening," he says in stump speeches. And what's happening? "Change is happening." How so? "The reason our campaign has been different is about what you, the people who love this country, can do to change it." And the way to change it is to join the campaign, which, once you join it, will change America. Because this is our moment. The time is now. Now is the time. Yes, we can. We bring change to the campaign because the campaign is about change. We are the ones we've been waiting for. Obama and his followers are perfecting postmodern reflexivity. It's a campaign that's about itself. The point of the campaign is the campaign.

They don't put it this way, of course, which just confirms a suspicion that's been creeping up on some of us for months: As a speech-giver, a man who has wowed the nation with the power of his language, Barack Obama is getting away with murder. Rhetorically, he is a master of le baloney. It's not clear that Obama himself is even aware of this. His sincerity is self-evident and is one of the qualities that draw people to him, along with those eloquent hands, the grin, that voice as smooth and rich as molasses. His speeches are theatrical events, not intellectual excursions. On his website the videos of his most acclaimed speeches have proved much more popular than the transcripts. As a candidate he fits a public that prefers the sensation of words to the words themselves. His speeches are meant to be succumbed to rather than thought about.

But what if you do think about them?


It's not exactly Walt Whitman. But Obama wants us to know that the picture he paints with his pointillist precision is comprehensive: He's leaving nothing out. He drives the point home when he concludes his litanies of despair by saying: "I have seen what America is." In this sense Obama truly is the unity candidate. There is no white America or black America, as he says; no blue states or red states, in his famous formulation, but only the United States of America. And what unites all these people--what unites us--is our shared status as victims.

Unfortunately, this raises the question of who the victimizer is. It's an uncomfortable question for a candidate who, having drawn such a depressing picture, wants to pivot toward the positive and upbeat and hopeful. Suddenly Obama's gift for the identifying detail leaves him. With unaccustomed vagueness he refers to "lobbyists" and "overpaid CEOs" but never names them. It's a world without human villains, improbably enough. Who are the agents of this despair? By whose hand has the country been brought so low? Whoever they are, they vanish in the fog of sentences like this: "We are up against decades of bitter partisanship that cause politicians to demonize their opponents instead of coming together to make college affordable or energy cleaner." So not even politicians in power are responsible; it's decades of bitter partisanship that has forced them into demonization, and the demonization has in turn prevented them from getting things done.

Read the whole thing. It is worth the time.
posted by Phoenix | 12:01 PM | 0 comments

The other huge news yesterday (beside Obama trying to explain how racism is sometimes acceptable) was the Supreme Court hearing oral arguments in the case D.C. vs. Heller.

This is a very important case. I am watching it like a hawk because of my own personal views and what I see as the potential continued erosion of the most important of our civil rights. For, if not for the promise you can protect yourself, the other rights can be taken away. It really is that simple.

For the uninformed, let's recap the case.

For 30-some odd years, Washington D.C. has had one of the strictest gun laws in the nation. Their law makes it illegal for a person to have a handgun in their home for protection. Moreover, any other weapon in the home must be disassembled or trigger-locked and unloaded to be legal.

A gentleman by the name of Heller, an armed security guard by trade, petitioned the city for a license to have a handgun at home for protection but was denied. And then, he filed suit as he felt that his Second Amendment rights were being infringed. The US Circuit Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit found for Heller et al, striking down parts of the law in question as unconstitutional.

You can find all kinds of good stuff on this at the SCOTUSblog, by the way.

The first issue at hand in the case is whether the Second Amendment confers an individual right or a general one to the states - that is, whether Joe and Jane Nobody can have a gun or whether this is reserved for state militias.

In my opinion, this militia argument has always been crap. The amendment quite clearly states "the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed." Pretty clear, right? I mean, you can't say that the founding fathers meant "the states" when they said "the people" and then only say they meant it this way in this one place. Otherwise, you start screwing with a bunch of the enumerated rights of the people, such as the right of the people to peaceably assemble. Is this only for the states too? Is freedom of speech only for newspapers? Of course not.

There are a slew of other issues with the case, however. No civil right has ever been viewed as an absolute. Even freedom of speech requires that you not fraudulently shout fire in a crowded theater. So, the question remains of what are the reasonable restrictions to the Second Amendment.

Chief Justice John Roberts perhaps said it best yesterday when he asked of the court yesterday, "What's reasonable about a total ban on possession?"

From the questions that the justices asked of the parties, it seems likely that a majority of the justices will find that the Second Amendment recognizes an individual right. And frankly, that's just good news. The other issues are likely to be muddled somewhat, and no formal decision is expected until June, but even so, this is good news. I did not want to live in a country that would deny me the right to stop my would-be rapist dead in his tracks.

I know that there are people out there who hate guns, friends of mine even. But, this is fear, pure and simple. They see images in the media and the news which frighten them. They are fortunate that they've never been confronted with violence and not been able to defend themselves. I have. But then, I also grew up around guns and am comfortable with them. I don't see a gun as a threat unless it is pointed at me. In fact, I actually see knives as a greater threat, but that's me. I wish we all lived in a violence-free utopia, but that isn't realistic. There are bad guys out there. There are villains who prey on the weak and unarmed. If you want to be one of them, that's up to you, but I have a natural right to defend my life and liberty, the life and liberty of my family, and my property. I'm not talking about cattle rustlers, but rapists and home invaders.

I'm not comfortable waiting for the cops to come (assuming I live long enough to dial 911). I'm not comfortable with their response times. For example, as a teenager I lived with my mother, stepfather, and family in a very affluent Chicago suburb. We came home one evening (Veterans Day, I believe) to find that the house had been burgled. We called the local police and do you know how long it took them to arrive? An hour and a half. AN HOUR AND A HALF! I'm talking about a very safe community with next to no crime that wasn't teenage graffiti. I'm talking about a town with a 25 mph speed limit, border-to-border, and a reputation for enforcing said speed limit to within a mile. And yet, when something real did happen it took them an hour and a half. Forgive me, then, if I don't think they are going to come rushing to my aid when they have been warned that the bad guy is still on the premises.

Practicality aside, I've never been comfortable relying on others, preferring to rely on myself. My interpretation of natural rights and that identified in the Second Amendment is consistent with that. I get to protect myself, as my first line of defense, from those who would do me harm. Period.

I'm thinking we should have some sort of celebration, if merited, when the decision comes out. I mean, Kelo sucked, but this one looks to fall our way.


posted by Phoenix | 9:07 AM | 0 comments

Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Just Pissed Off
I swear, I'm going to give myself a heart attack one of these days.

Somebody, please, explain to me how I am supposed to excuse Rev. Wright's "occassional" racism as a product of the how and the when of his own up-bringing, some sort of crucible which forged him into a bigot and yet I'm supposed to be outraged at the Westboro Baptist Church for their views on homosexuality.

Does not compute.


Because somehow, in the wacky world of victim-based identity politics, picking on gays is unacceptable, but picking on white folks is fine and dandy.



Racism is racism is racism, no matter which colors are on which side of the invective.

Obama wins no points with me from his recent speech. His condemnation of Rev. Wright is too little too late. You have to call it out right away or you are lending the bile tacit approval. This girl isn't THAT fucking stupid, thankyouverymuch.

It doesn't take that much courage to call a racist a racist. I did it at the grand old age of 14, but Obama lacks the intestinal fortitude to do the same until until it is a political imperative that he distance himself from his "crazy uncle."

When I was 14, I was at a gun shop with my father. He was talking to the shop owner and I was browsing. The shop owner's wife engaged me in conversation, but not of the polite kind. She didn't know me, but she felt no qualms about bringing up her views about a certain local minority. What she said to me about this group was vile and ugly and absolutely racist. So, I turned on my heel and walked out without so much as a goodbye.

I was seething. Absolutely seething. And, I was still at full-boil when my father returned to the car. It was my distinct displeasure to relate to him why I was mad as hell. To his credit, my father urged me to act on my experience. I wrote a letter to the gun shop and to the editor of the paper. I had the courage at the age of 14 that Obama has lacked for 20 some fucking years. I called racism racism. My father never darkened the doors of the racist's shop again. But Obama only rejects Rev. Wright now that it is a political imperative, and even then only does so before effusively gushing about what a wonderful guy Rev. Wright is.

Sorry, Obama. That doesn't play with this girl.

Racism is racism is racism is racism. You don't get a pass if your skin is a certain color.

Not with me anyway.
posted by Phoenix | 12:28 PM | 0 comments

Monday, March 17, 2008
Movie Meme
Bumped to the top, scroll down for new posts.

Got this one from El Capitan.

Here's the how-to:

1. Look up 15 of your favorite movies on IMDB.
2. Post a quote from each movie for your readership to identify.
3. As readers correctly identify the quotes’ origins in the comments, strike out the quotes and name the commenter who answered correctly.
4. If the commenter also identifies the name of the speaker (the character or the actor), he or she gets bonus points in the form of a link to his or her site. Simple enough?

Got it? Good. Let's do this thing.

1. Honest to goodness it's the absolute ultimate!

Update: SpySistah correctly identified this line as being
spoken by Sandra Dee as Gidget in Gidget.

2. Great balls of fire. Don't bother me anymore, and don't call me sugar.

Update: Anonymous correctly identified this line from Gone With the Wind. Scarlett said it.

3. I don't open beer bottles with my toes, I don't sit around and count what's left of my teeth, hey, I don't even enjoy a good tractor pull.

Update: Amelie correctly identified this line from the Cutting Edge as being spoken by Kate Mosely (Moira Kelly's character).

4. Frankly, I'd rather have a job wiping Saddam Hussein's arse.

Update: Amelie correctly identified this line from Bridget Jones' Diary as being spoken by Bridget (Renee Zellweger).

5. I am no longer astonished at you knowing only *six* accomplished women, Mr Darcy, I rather wonder at your knowing *any*.

Update: El Capitan correctly guessed that this was said by Miss Elizabeth Bennett in Pride and Prejudice.

6. Flack had ingenuity and the contacts, Kim; That's better than bullets sometimes.

Update: Amelie is on a roll! She correctly identifies this line as being from Cloak & Dagger. Morris said it to Kim.

7. Chuy, hi. I'm Luke Skywalker.

Update: Two Half-points on this one for El Capitan who said "Darnit.... It was that guy from 'Friends' who was in 'The Whole Nine Yards', and he said it to this guy playing Salma Hayek's brother in that film called... called... I give up..." It was Matthew Perry's character Alex in the movie Fools Rush In. However, he actually said it to the character who played her ex-boyfriend.

8. Albuquerque. See I can do it too. Snorkel.

Update: Amelie nails it again! This one is Riley
Poole in National Treasure, spoken to one of the henchmen.

9. Waiter, will you serve the nuts? I mean, will you serve the guests the nuts?

Update: El Capitan correctly guessed that this was Myrna Loy as Nora Charles in The Thin Man.

10. More's the pity. Then your tailors will rule the land, and no one will make the clothes. So much for French fashion, and French politics.

Update: Amelie gets another one! This line is from The Scarlet Pimpernel, spoken by Sir Percy Blakeney.

11. I've hired you to help me start a war. It's a prestigious line of work, with a long and glorious tradition.

Update: El Capitan also correctly guessed this as being a line belonging to Wallace Shawn as Vizzini in The Princess Bride.

12. I'm setting booty traps.

Update: SpySistah correctly identified this as a line spoken by the character "Data" in Goonies.
13. Oh, yeah. Christian Demure. I've got tons of his stuff.

Update: SpySistah gets two half-points for identifying this as "John Travolta's wife in...ooh, this is killing me....that movie with C.Thomas Howell and the anonymous letters!" She is correct, Travolta's real life wife Kelly Preston spoke the line as Deborah Anne Fimple in Secret

14. Madame, if you continue masturbating my driver, you are going to be a murderer.

Update: SpySistah correctly identified this line as being from the movie My Chauffeur. She didn't guess it, but it was spoken by the character McBride - played by Howard Hesseman.

15. We were gonna fight our way through enemy territory. Scale the highest mountain in this goddamned place. Traverse a bridge that was about to collapse. And then if we were lucky, I mean really lucky, we were gonna fight our way through two thousand extremely poisonous snakes.

Have at it! No cheating now...

This just leaves #15. Come on! It is one of my favorite movies!


posted by Phoenix | 10:45 PM | 4 comments

"Like an Old Uncle Who Sometimes Says Things I Don't Agree With"
The blogosphere is bubbling with stories of Obama's "controversial" pastor. And, I intend to chime in on the matter.

First off, let me preface my views by saying that I am not a religious person. I am a spiritual person, but I think religion is ruined by church...and man. I don't need that kind of influence in my life, so I usually eschew it. I'm sure that not all churches are filled with bigoted hypocrites, but experience has taught me that I'm happier taking my own spiritual journey in a much smaller boat.

I don't care what particular brand of religion Obama subscribes to anymore than I care about Mitt Romney's being a Mormon or the religious beliefs of any elected officials. That being said, I do find some of Obama's church's views anathema to me, as do many. But even that isn't the focus of my tirade. No. Instead, I am concerned with Obama's views on these matters.

Because the Rev. Jeremiah Wright doesn't limit his sermons to Jesus or his teachings, but goes far afield and discusses politics and racism from the pulpit. As a matter of fact, I find some of the things he has said to be downright hateful - and I find that surprising coming from a man of the cloth FROM THE PULPIT. Don't get me wrong: I'm not some pie-eyed Pollyanna who would think a pastor couldn't be capable of hate. All men are capable of hate - it is a natural human condition, I'm just surprised that he bleats it from the pulpit.

What I find more offensive even than the Rev. Wright's words is the way that Obama is claiming ignorance and poo-poohing the matters.

Obama has been going to this church for 20 years. Reverand Wright married Mr. and Mrs. Obama and presided over the baptisms of their children. The notion that Obama is somehow ignorant of Wright's inflammatory views is...bullshit. When pushed recently about the incindiery views of his pastor, Obama characterized his relationship with his pastor (about whom he gushes and credits with lots of influence on the man he has become) as "an old uncle who sometimes says things I don't agree with."

Except...he's not his uncle. He's a man of religion who by Obama admits has been a great influence on Obama. So, when Wright gets on a roll and says things like "Not God Bless America but God Damn America", you don't just get to poo-pooh it.

And when just after September 11 Rev. Wright invokes that America deserved it, you don't just get to poo-pooh it and claim you weren't there.

(The video of this is no longer available at YouTube, but google it and you'll find people talking about it.)

Now, I'm really a pretty simple girl, but Obama's little smoke screen is as clear as glass to me. Obama must agree with Wright. Otherwise, he would have found another church. But, he didn't. And this is the issue for me. If Obama feels that the US is to blame for September 11, that is his right. But it bothers me that he is denying this in his quest to court white suburban voters.

If he really disagreed with Wright, he would have done something about it by now. Hell, I've walked out of movies that I felt were preaching to me. I've walked out of public meetings where things were being said that I found to be destructive or hateful. I've stopped shopping in places that had policies that I didn't agree with.

And, I assure you of this: Had my uncle - or even my father - ever said something like the USA deserved what we got on September 11 - I would have called them on it. I would not continue to drink the damn kool-aid, that's for damn sure. Why? Because I don't believe it. I will never believe it. And I don't want to belong to any organization that believes otherwise. Is it politically expedient for Mr. Obama to belong to this church and nod his head to all of that hatred and racism - because that's what Rev. Wright is preaching - RACISM? I'm sure it is. But, all political expedients have a down side. Obama, meet your Waterloo.
posted by Phoenix | 10:00 AM | 0 comments

Fire in the Belly
The good news is that I am feeling much restored after my recent stint as a potential plague victim.

The bad news is, I awoke with a fire in my belly. And, as is often the case, this will out as blog posts.

Consider yourself warned.
posted by Phoenix | 9:49 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, March 13, 2008
Rumors of My Premature Demise Have Been Grossly Exaggerated
"I'm not dead yet!"

"You will be soon."

"NO! I feel better!"

(Third party) - "Look - I can't take 'im like that."

"I feel better!"


That's from a Monty Python skit but I'm too wiped out to quote it accurately or google it, okay? Do it yourself.

I'm not quite dead, but I am a one-woman biological warfare experiment.

Feel like hell. Took yesterday off with fever. Now, no fever, but can't breathe and still very fuzzy. Sinus headache. watery eyes. dizzyness. chapped nose. So, don't expect much from me until I am free of this bug.
posted by Phoenix | 8:07 AM | 1 comments

Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Ultimately...Bare Assed
We're friends, right? I can tell you something mildly personally embarrassing and you won't think less of me? Right?

Okay, here's the scoop.

Recently I placed an order for women's undergarments from a national retailer known for such items. (They shall remain nameless because they are being really really decent about this.)

Anyway, as part of the order, I selected three pair of underwear from the "Bare Ultimate" line. When the order arrived, I checked the contents against the packing slip and then placed the items in my laundry basket for cleaning. The next day (Sunday), I did the laundry and then yesterday I chose to wear one of my new pair of underwear.

They were very nice. They are panty-line free and don't creep. Really, I was beginning to love them. That is, until 2 hours later.

It was at this time, when I was in the bathroom, that the garment came apart. As in - the entire right side seam came undone. Now, it should be pointed out that these underwear were not sewn together, but rather an adhesive bonds the appropriate places together. And poof! just like that - the bond gave way. No warning. AFTER 2 HOURS OF WEAR.

Unfortunately, the nature of the product's failure meant that there was no wearing the item for the rest of the day. Absolutely no point. I realize it may not come as a shock to you, but I'm not the kind of girl to go "commando." Shocking, I know. I just destroyed your mental images, I'm sure.

Going "commando" is not liberating for this girl. On the contrary, it made me a bit paranoid. Like somebody is going to notice the fact that I'm not wearing underwear or something. Irrational, yes, but that's how I felt. I spent the rest of the day ground-hogging, popping my head up and down and swiveling to make sure nobody caught on to my shame.

And, I was really pissed off about the whole thing.

But what really upset me was the irony: a product branded as "Bare Ultimate"...ultimately left me bare.

Now that's truth-in-labeling!

So, understandably peeved, I sent the following pointed but polite note to the customer service department:

Dear Customer Service:

I am writing about an item in my recent order number 353968204.

As I always do when I place an online order, I checked the contents of the box when it arrived (everything was fine) and then placed the items in my laundry basket for the next load.

Yesterday I washed my new under garments; among them were the 3 pair of Bare Ultimate undies from my recent order. I washed everything according to the labels and this morning, I put a pair of the Bare Ultimate panties on under my trousers.

Two hours later, at work, the right-hand seam came un-done.


Now, I realize that these panties aren’t exactly sewn together, but I did expect them to last longer than 2 hours. Are my expectations unreasonable? I hope not. I also hope that you are able to provide me with some remedy as I am not exactly eager to put on another pair tomorrow morning and find myself going “commando” again by 9 a.m. due to the faulty/weak nature of the bonding agent used in these garments.

I would appreciate your kind and speedy review of this issue.

Thank you,


Now, as I said, I don't want to trash the company who sold these magic panties. They responded to my missive with an appropriately contrite apology and I'm going to let it go.

I just thought you might like a good laugh at my expense, or at least in the irony of a product named "Bare Ultimate" ultimately leaving me bare.


posted by Phoenix | 9:18 AM | 1 comments

Friday, March 07, 2008
Did you know?
Gilad Schalit is still being held hostage.

Can you freakin' believe that?
posted by Phoenix | 9:52 AM | 0 comments

All the news wrapped up in a convenient package...
I am a bad bad blogger.

Here it is Friday and this is my first post of the week. What can I say? Real life sometimes gets in the way of my online activities. Shocking, I know. So, this post is sort of a catch-up of everything for at least the last five days.

Did I mention how this winter just continues to insult me? Oh, yeah. The sun finally came out and melted a bit of the snow, leaving wetness on some surfaces. Then, we dipped back down into godforsaken temperatures and the wetness turned to ice. Perhaps you see where this is going? Yeah. I slipped and fell outside of my office building. Wiped out like you wouldn't believe. It hurt right away too, and not just my "pride" if you know what I mean. My right ankle and leg were in so much pain that I just sat there on the sidewalk for about five minutes, pants getting wet. I eventually figured a way to get up - it hurt so much I was afraid that I had broken something (I've never broken a bone so I don't know how it feels) - and that mother REALLY hurt. So, I've been nursing a sprained ankle all week.

And then, on Monday afternoon, I came down with this stomach bug and it has been plaguing me ever since. So, that's nice.

Work has been very busy. I've been on a project that's filled up the spare minutes. And then some.

We are toying with the idea of putting up crown moulding in our master bedroom. That's nice.

I burned my left index finger on a pan last night. Hurts bad. Probably won't be fatal.

Bunny Boop's vocabulary continues to grow. What a treat she is! She swiped a cupcake off of the counter last night, the minx.

We are heading to the Wisconsin Dells tomorrow to partake of the waterparks. Bunny Boop's going to play and play and play.

That's about it on the personal front.
posted by Phoenix | 9:33 AM | 0 comments


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