Sunday, February 24, 2008

Very Odd Headline

Man dies in cake-eating contest

Something tells me there just has to be more to this story.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Your New Bicycle

I am spending way too much time at this site. And this one. This one, well, the joke gets old quick.

Not only is it funny, some of it is true. Barack Obama respects my opinion, Michelle Obama has never shot me in the face and made me say I was sorry, and (as Mitt Romney learned) John McCain cannot be moved.

I am pretty embarrassed that this has been around since at least Thursday and I am only stumbling upon it today. Clearly, I am not the hip mom with her finger on the pulse that I pretend to be. Oh the shame.

Monday, February 18, 2008

A Place Where Politics and Sports Intersect

It happens every four years. A lot of us come out from under the rocks under which we had been living and suddenly start to pay attention. I mean, it wasn't as if we didn't pay attention all along. It wasn't as if we were completely ignorant or out of the loop. Just as occasionally we might find ourselves watching the Trophee Eric Bompard finals because nothing else was on television on a random Sunday afternoon or we might read an interview with the next up and coming American hopeful, we do keep ourselves sortof informed. But, let's face it, unless you are obsessed or in the business, it is hard to stay really focused on the issues on a daily basis. Real life has a way of elbowing it out of the forefront of your thoughts. Which means that when the year of the big competition rolls around, we throw ourselves into it headlong. Suddenly we all are watching ESPN to get the latest news and obsessively checking various sports blogs several times during the day. Suddenly, everyone is an expert and one finds that at every party to which one goes, one overhears people saying things like, "No woman has even attempted a triple axel" and one must resist the urge to point out that, no, Midori Ito was the first woman to land a triple axel in international competition 1988 and other women have successfully completed the jump since then. Suddenly, your brain is filled with trivia about the various competitors ("when she was little, she wanted to become a nun!") and obscure judging rules. Suddenly we all care so much and so deeply, and for a brief period of time, it is all we think about or talk about. And then, the competition occurs, the winner emerges, and we slowly go back to our lives. Yeah, we may talk about it with people, but it slowly recedes back into the recesses of our brains.

Now, doesn't that sound just like what we've all been doing with this year's presidential campaign?

Please note, I am not suggesting that the details of an athletic meet rivals the choosing of the president of the most powerful nation on Earth in importance. Not at all. I just can't help but notice an odd similarity in the reactions of so many people I have observed. I mean, a few months ago, I would have been as stunned to hear people talking about the difference between a caucus and a primary as I would be to overhear them talking about the difference between a lutz and a toe loop. But crossing into the year of the quadrennial event changes everything. Everything seems magnified, everything seems important, and everything seems to matter.

The big difference being that in the case of the presidential election, it really and truly is important and, if the last eight years is any indication, who wins does matter.

Postscript: After reading yesterday's round of smear attacks on Barack Obama (and the tortured logic behind them: Not giving any credit whatsoever to someone who was instrumental in getting the book written (and may or may not have written a good chunk of the book herself)=honest and ethical, nothing worth mentioning or pertinent with regards to someone’s character whereas using a couple of lines from someone else’s speech with the person’s express permission and at their suggestion=dishonest and unethical, definitely not someone who should be trusted to be president) and then reading this article in Politico, I am beginning to feel like this election year has its very own Tonya Harding.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Not Who I Want Representing My Country

I am stunned by this video. A soldier admits to torturing prisoners,raping a 15 year old Iraqi girl and pimping her out until she hung herself. Many of the comments on YouTube suggest it is fake, that someone made this video to make the US look bad. Real or fake, events like the one for which this man is taking credit have actually occurred. Tell me again why we invaded Iraq. Tell me again why men like this are sent out in the world as representatives of this country. Men like this make all the people in uniform look bad.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Go Read This Blog

Not my blog, this one. Reasons why you should read Tracy's blog:

1) She is an amazing writer.

2) Cool pictures of projects and her beautiful daughters. And her beautiful daughters wearing her completed projects. And her animals wearing her completed projects.

3) Because she says the blog is for me!

A few things you should know:

1) Tracy is the reason I took up knitting (my mom had taught me when I was a child and I recall many incomplete projects that I attempted as a youngster. However, it was Tracy who dragged me into Fiber Works, the yarn store which used to be on Lincoln Avenue down the street from Wax Trax--oy, I am dating myself--and thus began the adult chapter of my knitting life).

2) We became friends in the fall of 1990. She was a freshman, living in Kerr, I was a sophomore, living off campus in a studio apartment at 18th and Hawthorne (i.e. not really walking distance from campus). Through a sequence of events, we ended up hanging around with the same group of people. We were roommates the following year and Tracy bore witness to many of the most embarrassing moments of my life (well, at least the ones that have taken place outside of a theatre). And she is still friends with me despite all of that.

3) Though she says the blog started as a letter to me, she never actually told me about it. If I hadn't noticed it on her Ravelry profile, I would never have known. Keep in mind, we do talk on the phone and exchange emails. So not only is this a blog for me, it is a secret blog for me. How cool is that?

I have a strong urge to write more about why Tracy is the coolest person in the world, but, unfortunately, Julian and I have to go make valentines for his school friends. one of these days, I will get all the memories down on paper or microchip. But today is not that day.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Like Russian Roulette, Only With Pie!

I guess the logic behind this game was that it is never too early to introduce your child to the joys of putting one's body on the block in a game of chance.

Monday, February 04, 2008

The Reason I Support Barack Obama

Yeah, I can talk to you about inspiration. I can talk to you about policy. I can talk to you about change. But as influential as all that is, the reason I am endorsing Barack Obama for President is simple: I am a mother and I have a child.

This is the first presidential election in which I am thinking in concrete terms. I used to talk about the future, but the future was always so abstract and unreal. I didn't have any idea of what sort of face the future would be wearing. Even in the last presidential election, when I was playing host within my body to a creature who would soon enter the world, I didn't know what the next generation would look like, couldn't see with my own eyes how much we owed them. Now I can.

So I support Barack Obama because Julian doesn't yet have the opportunity to vote himself.

A friend of mine from high school recently sent me an email wherein she discussed the generational gap within her family--the older women in her family were supporting Hillary Clinton and felt betrayed by her and her cousins support of Barack Obama; they felt that they knew what it was like to have their opinions discounted and had known the pain of having to put their hopes and dreams on hold and they could see this knowledge and pain in Hillary Clinton. And while I could write volumes on whether or not Hillary Clinton should serve as a vessal for our own hopes, fears, desires, disappointments, and anger as women, it doesn't ultimately make a difference as to whether or not I think she should be elected president. Because as worthy as she may be, Hillary Clinton is part of the past. Her claim to the office is rooted in yesterday. But this election is about tomorrow.

This election is not about our mothers. This election is not about us. This election is about our children.

I want to give my son a future of which he will be proud. And that is, ultimately, why I am supporting Barack Obama for President.