Monday, October 29, 2007

Little Queen on the Prairie: The Halloween Special

So, what have we here? The year is 1976, it is Halloween and we have a clown, a hobo, and, oh, gosh, what is that? That is a 10 year old tawdry little cross dresser perched daintily against the garage door. Would it be me? It sure would.
It took me 20+ years to find this picture funny. The only reason I'm in possession of it today is that I stole it from my mother's photo album in my twenties out of shame. Why? That particular Halloween was one of my first moments of awareness that I was different than other little boys and that different did not always go over well with one's parents and friends. I very clearly recall my mom encouraging me to be something else, my dad asking why the hell I wanted to go trick or treating as a woman and getting teased a bit by my friends. This photo was hard to look at for a long time. Now, I just feel sorry for the kid in that picture for not having someone around to give him a squeeze and let him know that he should hang in there for another 8 or 10 years at which time he can get the hell out of that little town and see there is a world full of people just like him.
Today, I get a really good laugh out of this picture. There are just so many things wrong here- the hair painted on my legs, my trailer trash makeup (which is the only makeup I could ever do- my upbringing I suppose), the fact that in a gay universe my exaggerated feminine pose would be just as it should be, but in Decorah? I was also a tall child. The other two in the picture are a few years older than me. I could have passed for a really trashy 15 year old. Had I had my wits about me back then, I might have wandered in to the Corner Bar and seen if the locals would have bought me a drink. Mmmmmm. Locals.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

A Morning Pick Me Up

If you've got a God given gift, share it with the world. Enjoy.

Friday, October 26, 2007

America's Next Top Model- Week 6 Update

Week 6 was another exciting week in top model land. The week began with a visit from Tyson Beckford to work with the girls on being spokesmodels- a whole new skill in addition to looking pretty all the time. In the exercise the girls had to sell a common kitchen object to Tyson. You could tell all the girls were all moist over him because you've never heard kitchen utensils and equipment sexualized like that before. A little embarrassing ladies.

The obscene kitchen activity was followed by a team competition to write and act in a public service announcement for a children's charity. Heather's (autistic girl) team won the challenge. Two of the girls on the winning team got these foofy gift baskets, but one who's name was drawn from a bowl got to go shoot a real ad for a real charity. The weird part was that Mary J. Blige was the art director for the shoot. Huh? Mary J. an art director all of a sudden? Odd. Anyway, Heather had her name drawn and did a flawless photo shoot- face on, no profiles. Go, Heather, go!

The judging challenge was as dumb as ever. The show decided to promote non-smoking and a green mentality this year. So, this week, the girls had to do an editorial shoot where they were various recyclables. Wha huh?? Can you stand it? Heather (autistic girl) was to embody aluminum cans. Zzzzzzzz. Only Heather could make aluminum cans look this good. (See below)

Anyway, the really exciting part came at judging. A little back ground first- all season Monique (pretty cheese ball) who is quite beautiful has not taken criticism well and appears to have very little self awareness. So all episode, she was whining and carrying on about wanting to go home. It came down to Ambriel (musical theater major) and Monique. Both had taken average pictures at best. However, Ambriel got sent home. But wait! Monique spoke up and said that she wanted to go home instead and that's when Tyra nearly popped a vein. She didn't pop a vein, but she really, really, really wanted to. You could just see her holding back to avoid the embarrassment of a previous season (see video below). She very calmly told Monique that the quality she found least attractive in people was being a quitter and sent her home. Ambriel got to stay another week.
Compare that Tyra moment to this (stick with it- it gets great at about 40 seconds):

Don't you just LOVE IT??

Thursday, October 25, 2007

A Dog Story

Back in the late winter of 1997, I was in the habit of visiting the humane society to say hi to the dogs and wish them good luck. One of those days, I decided to see who was in the lost and found section. This isn't a public area, so I had to tell a little white lie to get myself back there. As I was saying hi to the dogs, I came across a cage with a tiny apricot toy poodle who was cowering at the back of his kennel. His hair was matted all the way down to his skin and he didn't look well. I asked an attendant what his story was. She indicated he had been found a week earlier in a snow drift in the Brookdale Mall parking lot- a dumping. When I asked what would happen to him, she said he probably wouldn't make it to the adoption floor considering his sickly appearance and shy disposition. That was all I needed to hear. The next day, I went back to the humane society, told another white lie and $80 later, I had the little poodle in my car and was on my way.
At the time, I taught basic obedience at a local pet store that also had some groomers on site. I convinced the groomers to give the little guy a bath and hair cut. After the grooming, a different little dog emerged. He was pretty bald, but cute, as all of his hair except for his ears and tail had to be shaved off to clear the mats. What had changed most though was his attitude. The little guy was obviously feeling much better because he was strutting, and had gone from introvert to extreme extrovert. He was a very sweet little guy and ended up living with Louis and I until a new home could be found.
I posted a sign advertising him at United Way, where I was working at the time. Within an hour, a co-worker, Gin, had called offering the dog a new home. Gin is an interesting woman- older, a bit shy and socially awkward, but very, very kind. She had recently lost one of her two dogs and was looking for companionship for her remaining dog. We arranged for her to get the poodle that day. After leaving United Way a short time later, I lost touch with Gin, and the story of Mickey the poodle slipped to the back of my mind.
Today, I was out for a walk with my employee Cynthia (also a former UW employee) during which we chose to walk around the United Way building, just a block from our current employer. As we passed the front of the building, who steps out? Gin. I reintroduced myself and asked what ever happened to Mickey the poodle. It turns out that Mickey had just died on Monday after developing some heart trouble. She said that he had been her best friend for ten long happy years together. I was deeply touched. I really believe that sometimes the forces of the universe align in the right way and make the right things happen. It was affirmed for me through a woman and her much loved little dog today, that doing something small, something that was almost forgotten a decade ago, can brighten a small corner of the world. Forgive me for being cheesy and maudlin, but it makes me want to do more small, forgotten things as a pawn for the universe.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Whole New Me: Weekly Update

Alas there is still no Whole New Me yet. *sigh* However, I am feeling a lot more hopeful after a week in the new Team Weight Loss program. The diet piece has been going pretty well. I'm now on an individually customized dietary exchange program that is more balanced than any approach I've tried before. So, I get to eat a real egg (1 protein, 1 fat) as part of breakfast, which I've denied myself for years. Sweet. I've also met a cool woman who's name is Shanita, a fellow IT geek- very interesting, highly motivated and would be fun at a party. So, anyway, here is the weekly update:

Man boobs: Still there; have been doing some weights so they feel a little firmer underneath their "boobness"

Spare tire(s): Still there, however, my pants buttoned just a hair easier yesterday. It's probably a combination of muscle toning and a little weight loss, but I'll take it.

Big ass: Still there, but firmer and seems to be carrying itself a little higher

Back fat: Still there; looks like boobs if I bend at the right angle so, no noticeable change

Weight loss: I think I might be down about 2 lbs on the home scale. We only do official weigh-ins on weeks 1,3,6,9,12, so I'll let you know.

Some day we need to uncover the reason that all female personal trainers are named Lindsay, Bethany or Danielle. Do they change their names like strippers who are all Amber?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Another @#$#!*% Trip to Whole Foods

Why can't I leave Whole Foods with only what I intended to get?? Aaarrrggghh!! This morning, I stopped in after the farmer's market to pick up a bottle of balsamic vinegar. I quickly found a bottle and popped it in my basket and was ready to go.
Then it happened- the evil cheese counter. I start looking at some cheese with no real intent to buy any, when I hear a voice from behind the counter. It is one of Whole Foods' many cheese incubuses- a disarmingly cute, polite, 20-something young man with cheese knowledge- saying "Sir, could I interest you in some Stilton with a chile-lime puree on a spelt cracker this morning?" Of course, I said yes. What was I supposed to say- "F*ck you, cheese boy, minion of the dark lord of quality dairy products?" It was like he read my mind- cheese? chile? lime? This guy was good.
So, what did I leave with? A bottle of balsamic vinegar, two varieties of stinky cheese, a 9.99 3 oz jar of chile-lime puree (!!!), a tiny bottle of truffle oil that I spotted at the evil cheese counter and a copy of the UTNE Reader with the cover story "Why Are We So Angry?". Why? Because we spend all our money at the damn cheese counter. That's why!
When I got home I opened the blue and left the gorgonzola for later, sliced a pear, and dabbed a teaspoon of chile-lime puree on the plate. It was a moment of heaven- and it fit on my Whole New Me diet/fitness plan.

A Great Yesterday

Hooray! The sun was out yesterday, which meant that Curt and I had a fantastic day out in our yard and patio. Partly sunny and 70 on October 20th. Aaah.
We first put our outdoor furniture under tarps for the winter, an exercise in which we both have distinct roles. I am the "Tetris Master" for my ability to creatively stack the furniture. Curt is the "Tarp Master" and has the job of covering the stuff and tying down the tarps. He rarely offers opinions on my portion of the work. I, on the other hand, always have an opinion about how we could tarp better. Stupid me. I offered a few suggestions yesterday and took way too long to catch on the fact that I was better off keeping my big mouth shut for the sake of our union.
While Curt was finishing the tarping, I moved to the shed, which seems to look like a war zone by the end of the summer. So, I removed just about everything that wasn't already hanging on wall and put it out on the lawn. Then I set about building some simple crafty storage solutions and installed some big hooks. All the stakes and posts are now stored neatly in a cage between two wall studs. Same with some window screening. The two big patio umbrellas are now hanging horizontally- one over the back wall and one neatly over the top of the wall with the window. Slick. After some more implements went up on hooks, the multiple pails stacked, rolled fencing placed in a large ceramic pots, we ended up with lots more room that before- even room for our huge new generator. Hooray! Curt was thrilled, but just looked at me funny when I suggested a moment of silence for this great moment in shed history.
In the evening, we went with a group of friends to see Elizabeth- The Golden Years. It was a visual feast and a great little film even with the historical embellishments.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

The Sun is Out! The Sun is Out!

Okay, well not completely. It is popping in and out of the clouds though, which is good considering the in-the-crapper weather we've had lately. I'm still pale, but in a happier mood.

Stevie Nicks Fajita Round Up

This is a skit from Saturday Night Live a few years back featuring Lucy Lawless parodying Stevie Nicks, who I adore. Very good stuff.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Translucent and Lacking Vitamin D

Sun. I need sun. It has been raining for about two weeks and not a single ray of unblocked sun. I'm crabby and can see my veins through my skin.

America's Next Top Model- Week 5

Just look at Heather (autistic girl) below. Pretty, pretty Heather. Unfortunately, this was not Heather's best week ever, but I still love her and am inspired. She started off badly by sitting around with the other gals offering her opinion of everyone's weak spots. Bad form. I think she may have been making an attempt at adapting to the loathsome social norms of the top model dream house. She does not need to go there.

The first exercise this week was to go to a gym and strike poses while bouncing on a long trampoline. Benny Ninja, voguing legend (we'll get to that later), was the posing coach. Many of the girls did reasonably well at this exercise, some were complete spazzes. Then there was Heather (autistic girl). She was alone in her total spastic universe. Fortunately, she had a good sense of humor about it, as she does most things. However, when she watches the show, she will realize that she looked like a brain damaged chimpanzee throwing itself against a wall. Not so fun to watch.

Next the ladies had to use what they learned on the trampoline by posing and expressing an emotion while being lifted by a professional figure skater... on the ice! Yes!! Most of the girls had never seen ice, except in their cocktails, let alone been on skates. There were varying degrees of success. Monique posed well, but her "sorrow" was expressed in a big pouty lip. I covered my eyes. Skater man didn't even attempt to lift Sarah (fattie) over his head. She did okay on the posing though. Then came Heather (autistic girl). It was tragic. I don't think she is accustomed to a lot of touch from strangers, and may have been afraid of the ice. Let's just summarize her performance with the image of the chimpanzee set forth in the previous paragraph. Lisa (stripper) won the challenge. She has low self esteem and needed the boost.

The judging challenge was to pose up on the roof of a building and be a high fashion gargoyle. Yup. You read it right. Anyway, most of the girls did well considering how lame the idea was. However, Ambriel (musical theater major) was terrified of heights and it showed. Sarah (fattie) apparently didn't know what a gargoyle was and instead posed as a hamburger waitress or something. Heather, as you can see below, was again gorgeous.

When it came to judging, our lovely autistic girl got harshly critiqued by the judges for never looking at the camera, but instead offering only profile shots. Beautiful shots, but profile. As a result, she didn't register in the top three. Sarah (fattie hamburger waitress) should have been eliminated for her lame picture but wasn't. Crime. Instead, Janet (pretty athlete type) was sent packing. Sad.

Okay, so the Benny Ninja, voguing legend, business. What the hell? Curt and I can barely watch this guy. He takes his "craft" of posing/voguing so seriously that it embarrasses us. Oh, and wait, didn't voguing become terminally uncool the very moment that Madonna did it? When a middle aged white woman, no matter how pretty or rich, co-opts a piece of an underground black gay subculture and broadcasts it to the masses, it is not just sad, but over. Over, Benny.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

King of Lame, but Proud?

My first ever tag comes from Melinda June, who, after 35 years of acquaintance, knows my life is one lame moment followed by the next. But of which lameness am I proud? Here is the assignment:
TO DO: List 5 things you do, did or like that some may consider “totally lame,” but that you are totally proud of.
Here we go:
  1. I am a Creative Memories consultant. Yup. That's got to win a lame prize or count as three lamities or something. It really is cooler than you think. Host a party at your home to find out. I can hear the phone ringing now.
  2. I love Stevie Nicks. God how I love her. I nearly spoke in tongues at her concert two years ago and have been known to sing Stand Back and Edge of Seventeen over and over and over in my car while driving to Iowa. Though she sounds like she's been dating Jack Daniels and the Marlboro Man for 40 years, you have got to at least respect her longevity. Or maybe you don't.
  3. In college, one of my roommates approached me 25 minutes before she had to leave for class and asked for help with her paper. She had only written 4 sentences at that point, which was a little lame in itself, but that will be on her list. So I sat down at my little blue electric and cranked out a 750 word paper by just by adding lots of flowery language and pure unadulterated bullshit. She got a B+. I'm not proud I helped her cheat. I'm proud my bullshit got a B+.
  4. In the late eighties, I got a little addicted to having really tall hair and sort of did a modified version of mall bangs, but stood up most of the hair on my head in a stylish sort of way. I still look back at those pictures and think I looked good, real good. (Who doesn't at 23?) A boyfriend at the time once said to me, "It's okay to have a lot of hair products, but do you have to use them all at the same time?" We didn't last. And he's now dead. Not by my hand.
  5. As you might know from reading older posts, I have two webbed toes on each foot. Chang and Eng on my left foot are the most webbed. Occasionally, I'll draw smiley faces on their toe nails and think I'm the funniest guy on earth. I especially enjoy it if they are still smiling back at me when I take my socks off at the end of the day. I should be careful not to amuse myself to death.

Sadly, Melinda June tagged all the people I know in blog land. A blog nerd with no friends. *sigh*

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to The...

...farmer's market. Okay, so it's Sunday morning at about 8:30 a.m. and I am driving to the farmer's market. I'm on a two lane one way street in the left lane (with the parking lots on my left) and there is an older maroon Toyota in the right lane just a few feet in front of me. As the parking lot entrance approaches on my left, the maroon Toyota starts turning in to it from the right lane causing me to slam on my brakes in order to miss the idiot driving the Toyota. I was WILDLY UNHAPPY and laid on the horn a few times, vocalized some choice words loudly, then followed the moron in to the parking lot. To get the market, I have to walk right in front of idiot driver's car. Without paying much attention, I say rather loudly "Do you ever LOOK before you change lanes???" Rather quickly, the passenger door opens and I'm soon face to face with a ferocious looking 4' 5" Hmong grandma. Actually, it was really more like my sternum to her face, but it felt much worse because she was having none of my ranting. So, I let it go and moved on quickly to start and finish my shopping because I'm certain that within minutes grandma is going to go to all the Hmong vendors, make them raise their prices just for me, then spit on my produce. Bad grandma.
But that's not all. When I cross the street there are three guys looking at me. A few things are pretty clear to me about these guys:
1. They have no real interest in the market beyond waiting for their wives to get done.
2. My near miss is the coolest thing they've ever seen before 9:00 a.m.
3. There was some look in their eyes that said they wanted to bond with me over my near death experience. (I dramatize, but you never know what could have happened without prompt braking.)
Sure enough, as I approach them they start smiling and laughing and saying things like "Do you need any witnesses?" "That was pretty cool." "Do you want us to beat 'em up?" I reply by saying it has taken me 20 years to get used to Minnesota drivers and I'm still surprised. I also advise them to watch for the car's occupants and let me know if they can take them in a fight. They were still chuckling as walked away, but I imagine they caught a glimpse of grandma shortly thereafter and instinctively knew she could kick all their asses in about 30 seconds. Bad mean grandma.

Update: Winter Fashion for Teenage Boys

It is done. I went out last night after my first Team Weight Loss adventure and bought some goods for the coats for kids project. First I tried Dick's Sporting Goods and my eyes nearly fell out. The cheapest jacket I could find was $130 and it was really poorly constructed. Everything else was a "high performance" jacket costing $225 up to $375. That is a crock o' poo!! Crock o' poo! What kind of activity requires a high performance winter jacket? Nobody should work that hard in the snow and cold. Feh.
So then I went around the corner to Land's End and hit pay dirt. I picked up a beautiful hooded black down jacket for just under $100 (take that Dick!), a warm feeling skull cap type hat and some nifty gray gloves. I was a little afraid to ask the opinion of the cashier, who turned out to be 16, after my battery of criticism that I faced last year, but I did anyway. She thought a 16 year old boy would really like the ensemble I picked out. Hooray!
Thanks to all of you for the advice you gave me. It definitely pointed me in the right direction. A boy from family Robertson, child 4 of 6, will be warm this winter!

Monday, October 15, 2007

A Whole New Me!

So, I completely made up the title. *sigh* However, I did sign up for program at the gym this weekend that started tonight. The name is Team Weight Loss and is a combination of exercise, nutrition and education. It's a 12 week program where 8 of us theoretically support each other through the program to meet our goals. Why did I do this?

1. My waist size (starts with a 4) is now to the point that if I go one size up, all manufacturers assume that I have a 28 or 30 inch inseam. Have they never seen a tall fat guy?? If there was a Lane Bryant for men, I would shop there, but I will not go in to a big and tall shop for men.
2. I have man boobs that only go away if I pull my shoulders way back and arch my back in an uncomfortable way that is unpleasant to look at and sort of says "Anyone for some leche?"
3. I am tired all the time and have little energy to anything but wake up and go to work, then lounge in the evenings.
4. I have ZERO self control around eating things that I see- especially in candy jars that are strategically placed through all 16 floors of our office building.
5. I don't really even see fat on other people, but I'm really conscious of my own. I don't intend to be bone skinny, but I do want to get down around 200 lbs.

Each week, I am going to post my progress here. If I am losing weight, I don't want any praise, but if I'm not, I want shame. LOTS OF SHAME. Being raised Lutheran, this works. Start practicing now.

So, here is my before picture. I don't expect I'll look much different after losing some weight, maybe just a little saggier with a happier disposition.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Winter Fashion For Teenage Boys

Every year I sign up to buy a new jacket, hat and gloves for a local child who's family might otherwise not be able to afford it. I really enjoy doing this because I know some young person won't have to suffer on their way to school this winter. I also like to shop.
Two years ago, I picked a 5 year old boy and got some of the coolest small clothes on the planet. Last year, I figured that the teenagers on the list would probably get picked last, so I signed up to buy for a 16 year old girl who wanted a pink jacket in a large size. I figured it couldn't be too hard to find, pink being the new black and all. However after visiting about 10 stores, there weren't any pink jackets outside of the petites department, so I abandon the pink jacket idea and decided to get pink accessories for a jacket of another color. Easier? Wrong. I found a 16 year old girl sales clerk and asked her "Would you wear this?" She replied "If I wanted to be called grandma." Every jacket I picked up she would say things like "Old lady", "Really old lady", "Too ghetto", "Too uptight", etc. After about an hour of this, we landed on a really lovely gray wool coat and some cute pink accessories. Whew.
This year, I signed up to buy for a 16 year old boy who wants a jacket of any color. Easy, right? Wrong again. I have no idea what teenagers wear and there aren't many in my neighborhood that I can observe. Each time I step into an outerwear department, I hear last year's sales clerk in my ear. So, I'm desperate. If any of you have a teenage boy, know a teenage boy, live within a mile of a teenage boy, PLEASE HELP ME. What on earth do teenage boys, who are probably not gay, wear for winter attire?

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Can You Guess Who Said It?

From a speech in Lancaster, PA October 3:
"Your government is spending a fair amount of money, of your money, to research cellulosic ethanol. And that's a fancy word for using corn chips or switchgrass to be able to be the feedstock for new ethanol production. "
Hmmmmm. If you guessed our clueless "leader" Dubya, you get a gold star.
There are so many things to say about the "corn chips" business, but I'll have to refrain.
When will it end, you ask? When, oh, when? January 2009.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

America's Next Top Model- Week 4

Oh how I love this stupid show! Yes, there are about 50 other more productive things I can do with my time. Will I do them? Uh-uh. Not while this show is on. Oh no.

It was makeover week in which the girls trade in their old drab selves for something slightly less drab, usually in the form of a new hair color and cut. Selisha, who had beautiful long hair, got a blunt Cleopatra meets Dorothy Hamil hair cut, which was, in my humble opinion, a real dog of a hair cut. Bianca, with the hoochie red and black hair, was supposed to get a blond weave. However as they started combing out her hair, it started breaking off in chunks. The stylists basically scrapped the plan and cut all her hair off. Wa la! She went from hoochie girl to fabulous with just a clipper and a bucket of tears. Sarah (fattie) went from long brown hair to short sassy blond. (More on her later.) Heather (autistic girl) hardly needed a makeover at all. They only trimmed off a couple inches and added highlights. Most of the makeovers looked great. Only one ended up looking like a bucktooth Daisy Mae. I don't know how it happened, but it did.

Sarah (fattie) started out the night on a high note, by winning the Cover Girl makeup challenge. Go fattie! Next the girls were out on their photo shoot, in which they had to become a plant- most girls got flowers, but Heather (autistic girl) was the weed. Uh, did she nail it? Oh yeah. See for yourself.

Overall, Heather (autistic girl) came in 3rd in the judging. Tyra was all crusty nasty and critical with the other girls, but she loves Heather (autistic girl). Okay, so here is where it gets good. Sarah (fattie), who I've always said wasn't fat enough to be a fattie but is compared to the other porcelain worshippers, was critiqued rather harshly by the judges for doing what? LOSING WEIGHT! Yes, Sarah (fattie) has lost weight and the judges don't think it has done her any favors. All fatties cheer!! I think she's lost some of her thigh fat and maybe some back fat. So she really is just blending in. No fun. Have a sandwich, Sarah (fattie).

So, all in all, another great week drinking from the shallow pond at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesdays. And I'll say it again. I love Heather (autistic girl). Go autistic girl go!

Last Weekend

The world might not think of Iowa when they think art and Iowans might not think Decorah when they think art, but they are sort of wrong about that. Last weekend, Curt and I and three friends ventured to Decorah for their annual artist's studio tour. We always stay in the Old Hospital Lodge in the tiny village of Highlandville about 15 miles north of Decorah. Highlandville, if you haven't been there, is a cute place, now most famous for it's trout stream and pastoral setting. The paved road literally ends across the bridge in downtown Highlandville. This place is a little remote and has only about 20 year round residents.
So what do you do in Decorah (other than Walmart, Mindy)? You eat copious amounts of Mabe's pizza, eat numerous Ronnie's rolls at Ruby's, which now serves rommegrot- I love it- have a decent meal out at La Rana, listen to a local klezmer sounding band called Maritza, and shop for art. And did we shop for art. As if every nook and cranny of our house isn't already filled with functional and art pottery, we ended up buying more from Elisabeth Maurland, Dean Schwartz, Doug Cole, Kelly Jean Ohl and Nate & Hallie Hite-Evans. I also picked up a photo book of Decorah- as if every corner of it isn't burned into my memory. We went a little crazy.
On Sunday, we went out to Green's Sugar Bush- no not a naked kitchen mishap, but a maple sugar farm- for the annual Saddle Club charity pancake breakfast. We LOVE this event. All you can eat HOT pancakes, sausages cooked over a campfire, real maple syrup- gallons of it if you want- and a great outdoor setting. Oh, and polite young people who come around with MORE pancakes and sausage. Sweet (deity of your choosing)! It was like a dream. Lots of tasty breakfast food and people to fill my plate without having to go to the kitchen. It gets no better than that!
Oh, and it was about 90 degrees all weekend which was freaky for October.

Monday, October 8, 2007

America's Next Top Model Week 3 Update

This is Heather (autistic girl)!! She had another great week, coming in 2nd in the overall judging. I love this girl. Not only is she mildly autistic, she has an incredible sense of self awareness and works hard to overcome her disability. Go, autistic girl, go!
Next week, the ladies get their big makeovers. I LOVE THIS EPISODE! There are always several girls who get their hair completely chopped off. Even though they usually end up looking fabulous, they cry about it, then whine about it for the rest of the season. Their whining is usually one of the reasons they get sent home. You would think that the contestants would have learned something from past seasons, but, no. I love it.

Yet Another Reason Brits Should Be Glad They Don't Own Us Anymore

In addition to surly colonialists who fought a guerrilla war against neatly lined up British soldiers, the decimation of the Queen's English, and the export to British soil of Madonna, the U.S. has now produced a deadly mosquito capable of putting Brits into a coma. What will we think of next to piss off our friends across the pond?
This story is actually quite terrifying- mosquitoes carrying eastern equine encephalitis, a horse illness transferable to humans. My solution: when the illness hits Minnesota bring back the DDT! Never mind the peregrine falcons, bald eagles, loons and other wildlife. I refuse to wear a mosquito netting burka, even with the right belt.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Bush Hates The Poor and Working Class

Wow. The children's health care bill to continue SCHIP programs and expand them to cover 4 million more uninsured children got the big veto from Dubya yesterday. He was concerned that the expansion of the program moved the focus away from poor families and expanded coverage to middle class families, and implied that the country was moving toward federally managed health care.
Um, Georgie, you may not believe this but there are lots of "middle class" families (and singles) who can't afford private insurance when their employer doesn't offer it. And, by the way, what is middle class? Is it everything between the ridiculous "poverty line" and $150K in annual income? Yes, it is true after all that everyone in the "middle class" is living the big american dream. Even though SCHIP covers families at up to 3x the poverty line, depending on the size of the family, these folks still struggle to live the american dream.
Oh, and aren't just the funds managed at the state level with no control over the actual delivery of service? Stupid bastard.