Conversation of the Year

Filed under:It's My Life,Mothering — posted by Anwyn on December 31, 2008 @ 7:22 pm

Me, in front seat, speaking of something completely unconnected: “…and that’s how decent people should behave!”

A little, thoughtful voice from the back seat: “Are you a decent girl?”


Happy New Year, everybody.

I Love My Lileks

Filed under:Blogging,Heh,Television — posted by Anwyn on December 30, 2008 @ 7:45 pm

At the end of a foamily descriptive discourse on shaving:

That first shave with a new brand is better than any other shave you ever get. It makes you wonder if there’s a whole different level of razor technology reserved for the uppermost elites, the Presidents and Premiers and 33rd degree Masons and Popes and Politburo poohbahs and everyone else who lives in the rarified air above. The job has to have some compensations. Obama’s first day in office will begin with the best shave he’s ever had.

Man, that’s incredible. Any other surprises in store today?

Yes, sir. After you receive the briefing on our strike on the Iranian ship bringing a nuclear device into the New York harbor, they will give you the second season of “Firefly.”

Ha ha ha. My dear man. The Pentagon keeps that locked up under three keys, none of which belongs to the president.

Here’s What I Want to Know

Filed under:Jerks,Politics — posted by Anwyn @ 3:28 pm

How desperate do you have to be for a Senate seat, and how sure you won’t get one any other way, to accept an appointment from a blowhard mob type who’s been arrested on federal charges and been warned from every possible quarter that his appointment to the seat will not be, um, seated? What a nest of idiots.

And why do these appointments lie with governors anyway? Who thought it was a good idea to give them that power?

If They Do This, I Will Finally Stop Talking About Moving, and Move

Filed under:Church of Liberalism,Not Cool,Politics,Wacky Oregon — posted by Anwyn @ 6:03 am

Oregon governor Kulongoski to pursue mileage tax.

Now that you’re beaten into submission on that whole fuel-efficiency thing, you’re using less gas, but we still demand that you drive less, and oh yeah, we are determined not to lose a single penny of revenue by you curbing the behavior that we demanded you curb to begin with.

The online outline adds: “The governor is committed to ensuring that rural Oregon is not adversely affected and that privacy concerns are addressed.”

How can rural areas possibly NOT be adversely affected except through special exceptions that will no doubt rile suburban dwellers? If I had no choice but to drive ten miles one way to the nearest drugstore rather than the two I drive now, that’s an adverse effect. And please believe me when I say: I’m from North Carolina, I’ve lived in Texas and small-town Indiana, and Oregon outside Portland is the single largest rural area I’ve lived in close proximity to.

They say they’re dealing with the privacy issue–i.e. although while they plan to track the car they don’t plan to record its travel–but I fail to see how that can be assured since the distance tracking will be done, obviously, through GPS. So it seems to be more a case of “Trust us! We promise we won’t track vehicle location even though, obviously, we could!”

Tell me another one, Nanny Salem.

Via Drudge.

40 Inspirational Speeches in Two Minutes

Filed under:Cool,Movies — posted by Anwyn on December 29, 2008 @ 9:30 pm

Plus a few more speechless moments. I don’t think I’d have included Pulp Fiction but otherwise pretty darn good.

Pinched from Average Gay Joe.

A Letter from My Congressperson!

Filed under:Jerks,Language Barrier,Need a Good Editor?,Politics — posted by Anwyn @ 7:51 pm

Or, How Politicians Lie to Themselves so That They May Lie to Me About My Own Positions

In response to my emailed form asking him to vote NO on the auto bailout:

Dear Ms. Anwyn, If That Is In Fact Your Real Name:

Thank you for contacting me regarding your opposition to government loans for the auto industry. I appreciate knowing your thoughts on this issue.

Well, that’s a relief; I’ve been under the impression members of Congress do not want to know my thoughts on this issue. Oh, right–they don’t:

I understand your concerns with the federal government providing assistance to the auto industry, and I share your anger with the automakers’ business plans’ that focused on production of large SUVs and high-profit luxury vehicles instead of the fuel-efficient vehicles consumers demanded. However, in this economy, when over 1 million have already been lost this year, I believe Congress has a responsibility to protect the 3.3 million jobs GM, Chrysler, and Ford provide for American workers. In Oregon, more than 37,000 jobs are directly liked to the “Big Three” automakers.

Whew! So THAT’S the problem–huge businesses deciding, for kicks, to make a boatload of product that nobody will buy while paying their workers artificially high wages! No, wait–that’s not what they were doing, that’s what Congress actually wants them to do–make bicycle-shaped cars that run on hamster wheels. Should make them solvent in no time flat, yes?

Our nation is facing serious economic turmoil that has been characterized by a sharp downturn in auto sales. While I am deeply concerned about the business decisions that contributed to the automakers inability to respond to our nation’s current economic crisis, I believe we should help the auto industry weather the current economic crisis. That being said, I believe any assistance should be tied with conditions, and the federal government must have broad accountability and oversight powers. These conditions should be based on the automakers overhauling their business foundations for long-term viability.

I voted for the auto industry rescue (H.R. 7321, the Auto Industry Financing and Restructuring Act) when it was considered by the House of Representatives on December 10, 2008. The rescue would have provided up to $15 billion in short-term bridge loans to the automakers. In addition, H.R. 7321 would have created a “Car Czar” to hold the car companies accountable for developing and implementing viable long-term restructuring plans. The bill also would have prohibited participating automakers from providing excessive compensation packages to their executives, including so-called “golden parachutes.”

Well, thank God, as long as somebody’s making concessions.

H.R. 7321 was passed by the House by a vote of 237 to 170. The bill, however, stalled in the Senate, and it now appears unlikely that Congress will enact a rescue package for the automakers before the end of the year.

Hoo-rah-ray and a tiger.

Congress will likely re-consider a revised auto industry rescue when the 111th Congress convenes in January. Although we disagree on this particular issue, I will keep your concerns in mind as Congress debates further auto industry rescue proposals.

No, you won’t. You refused to even acknowledge my concerns, which centered on the UAW’s unreasonable contracts and refusal to make concessions. Because then you might have had to comment on them in this letter.

Thank you again for sharing your views on this issue. If you have further questions or concerns, please contact me at 503-326-2901 or 800-422-4003.

With warm regards,

David Wu
Member of Congress

Please do not respond to this message. This mailbox is unattended. If you wish to contact me, please use my website, Thank you.

I wonder if ol’ Wu has a staffer who gets off on sitting around, answering emails from constituents by re-stating their position in the way most disconnected from reality, or if he just wrote that one-size-fits-all piece of garbage and they mail it out to everyone who complains, no matter what’s in their email? Your Congress at work! You missed an apostrophe and a few other typos, guys. In the midst of your giggling over your cleverness (“Also, this one’s ticked about pork! Let’s put in ‘we’re just as angry about public money being spent on defense rather than on the homeless as you are’!”) you think you could put down the bong and do some proofreading?

I Can Has Pajamas Media Gig?

Filed under:Need a Good Editor? — posted by Anwyn on December 28, 2008 @ 9:07 am

When a Victor Davis Hanson column contains not one but two uses of the misspelled “wierd,” it may be time to hire a copy editor or at least a proofreader, no? I can edit in my PJs just as well as not …

Remember Who You Want to Be

Filed under:Bumper Stickers — posted by Anwyn on December 27, 2008 @ 4:07 pm

Saw that on a bumper sticker today, the first day I’ve been able to drive my car since the shenanigans began. A nice reminder of a good plan.

Of course, the person’s other sticker said “chor is enough,” so …

Plenty Days, I Just Want to Move

Filed under:Church of Liberalism,Priorities — posted by Anwyn on December 26, 2008 @ 11:11 am

It’s not the article, it’s the comments. So much certainty amid so much hand-wringing, anxious to let you know that it’s no longer Global Warming but now Global Climate Destabilization. Chew on that one for a minute–did you know we had a stable climate before we started driving cars? I sure didn’t.

At least if Portland is being stupid enough to admit, as is Seattle, that they refuse to salt down the ice because of “danger” to the environment, a quick Google doesn’t show it. That’s probably the only place in the country where the government could say something so obviously against its own interest and that of its citizens and still not be crucified for it. It’s bad for Puget Sound. Okay then. At least in Portland I’ve done ODOT the courtesy of thinking it was just incompetent rather than malicious. Hey, Seattle–that snowpack may do pretty well for cars with chains until a slight thaw. Then try going up a hill in six inches of ice slush, even with chains, and let me know how that works out for you. I just did it a couple days ago, and it’s nothing I want to repeat ever.

Seattle link via Ace. Begging people to stay off the roads, surprise, doesn’t work.

Happy Christmas to All, and to All a Good Night

Filed under:It's My Life,Religion — posted by Anwyn on December 25, 2008 @ 4:31 pm

What a week. Stories for another time. Snowbound in Portland, Oregon–a concept so far removed from reality that it never occurred to me it could happen. People stranded in the airport for four days or possibly more. A trip to church so the Bean could do his reading (which he actually recited from memory and for which he received a spontaneous round of applause in the middle of church) worse than any driving I ever did in Indiana. Friends who own a truck over for Christmas Eve dinner. And today–4:30 and I’m in my pajamas, eating leftovers and playing with the Bean’s toys. Aaahhh.

Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah to you and all of yours. Much love to my friends and family. And safety and warmth to everybody. The Bean’s passage, from the Contemporary English translation of the Bible, Isaiah 9:2-3, 6-7:

2 Those who walked in the dark
have seen a bright light.
And it shines upon everyone
who lives in the land
of darkest shadows.
3 Our LORD, you have made
your nation stronger. [b] Because of you, its people
are glad and celebrate
like workers at harvest time …

6 A child has been born for us.
We have been given a son
who will be our ruler.
His names will be
Wonderful Advisor
and Mighty God,
Eternal Father
and Prince of Peace.
7 His power will never end;
peace will last forever.
He will rule David’s kingdom
and make it grow strong.
He will always rule
with honesty and justice.
The LORD All-Powerful
will make certain
that all of this is done.

I Can Has TV Guide Gig?

Filed under:Language Barrier,Need a Good Editor?,Television — posted by Anwyn on December 16, 2008 @ 2:26 pm

When your only writing objective (and, apparently, your only task altogether) is to summarize a TV show and you can’t even get the character names right, it’s time to step out of line. Lester, not Larry, as a commenter helpfully notes … and as TV Guide still hasn’t fixed.


Filed under:Movies — posted by Anwyn @ 1:23 pm

A Ghostbusters sequel at this hour? After The X-Files and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, will this make three for three or success as a refreshing change of pace? Apparently, though, so far, it’s just talk.

Via Ace.


Filed under:It's My Life,Wacky Oregon — posted by Anwyn @ 9:49 am

I love the snow in Portland; it’s like winter at home in the midwest, but the downside is pretty big: Oregonians absolutely cannot drive in the stuff even two days after it’s fallen.

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image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace