Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Good news to end a crappy year.

2008 was a really, really sucky year for a lot of people and I've been interested to hear that reflected in the New Years Conversations people are having.

I paid a guy who did some work for me the other day and his e-mailed response was:


Here's to a better 2009 than 2008!

All best wishes,


John is not alone in talking this way. For me, a few nice things happened on a personal level, a few really shitty things happened on a personal level. But mostly the overall suck of world events soaked into my life, too.

Obama's election notwithstanding, I think a lot of people are glad this year is over. But it's probably worth noting that in many respects, life is on an upswing.

For example, people's complaints about violent videogames notwithstanding
Violent crime rates continue to be at their lowest in recent history. Sex crimes and crimes against kids are down, too.

I get that whether the average life expectancy hitting a new record is a good thing is a complicated question for those concerned about the population crisis. But I will confess that I'm pleased

Also, teen sex is down, teen pregnancy is down, teen condom use is up. The abortion rate is at its lowest in 30 years*.

Yay us!

Links swiped from one of Radley Balko's columns.

*Arguably, the abortion rate is low partially because there are so few places that will perform them these days. But I would think the condom use and teen pregnancy being down would have a lot to do with it, too, so I'm still calling that a win.

One word meme stolen from facebook.


1. Where is your cell phone? Desk

2. Your significant other? CSO

3. Your hair? Improving

4. Your mother? Sigh.

5. Your father? Melancholy

6. Your favorite thing? Discussions

7. Your dream last night? Anxious

8. Your favorite drink? Gimlet

9. Your dream/goal? Buffy

10. The room you're in? Office

11. Your fear? Emptiness

12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Courtroom

13. Where were you last night? Home

14. What you're not? Secretary

15. Muffins? Pass

16. One of your wish list items? Purse

17. Where you grew up? Virginia

18. The last thing you did? Sighed

19. What are you wearing? Clothes

20. Your favorite TV show? Bones

21. Your pet? Numerous

23. Your life? Lived

24. Your mood? Restless

25. Missing someone? Indeed.

26. Your car/truck? Conspicuous

27. Something you're not wearing? Makeup

28. Favorite Store? Nordstrom

29. Your summer? Indistinguishable

30. Your favorite color? Blue

31. When is the last time you laughed? Recently

32. Last time you cried? Distant

THREE PEOPLE WHO E-MAIL ME: Linguistfriend, ZombieKid, Kim





Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas, y'all

"So, have a merry Christmas, a happy Hanukkah, a kwaazy Kwanza, a tip-top Tet, and a solemn, dignified, Ramadan. And now a word from MY god, our sponsors!"

Krusty the Clown

I'm headed to Charlotte, NC. Random travel pics and posting from there may for may not happen.

Have a great holiday.

Love and Kisses,


Response to the responses on audiobooks.

Harry Potter 6 is available as an audiobook on Itunes, but was fifty bucks. For a book I had read, that just seemed like too much, so I went with Jess' suggestion The Graveyard Book and the lastest non-fiction science book by longtime CC girl crush Natalie Angier.

Tom Robbins is awesomesauce and I went through a phase in college where I read everything he had written. "Jitterbug perfume" was my favorite.

I don't know much Terry Pratchett, but "Good Omens" was pretty good.


Melissa Etheridge is awesome

and I wish more people followed her example.


Another shining example of "traditional marriage"

written by a man who knows all about marriages, having had three of them.


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

All the little devils must be wearin' ice skates

Because CC is sending you to a Post about Oppression.

It's just that awesome.


CC's latest consumer complaint

Dear Phillips,

If I am looking for Iphone Earbuds and your earbuds say "Not compatible with Iphone" I will buy another company's earbuds and you will make no profit.


If I am looking for Iphone Earbuds and your earbuds say "Compatible with Ipod" in large lettering and do not say "But not Iphone" anywhere on the package then...

1. I will take said earbuds back to the store


2. I will get a refund


3. The store, unable to sell used Earbuds, will send them back and either you will refund the store or the store will take a bath on your products and be disinclined to re-order


4. I will hate you and not want to buy any of your products again and tell all my friends.




An obvious point that some other people have trouble getting

Some people are just plain off-limits romantically and sexually.

And I'm not even talking about like fifteen-year-olds who will grow out of being off-limits and whom you could always date later.

I'm talking about off-limits, for life, don't even try it.

For a few examples:

1. Catholic Preists. (Whether or not you are Catholic. And flirting with priests is just plain tacky, which is not to say that those of us who have priests teaching some classes don't see people do it all the time.)

2. Your therapist. (It's not the therapist, it's you. Trust me.)

3. Your mentally ill sister's husband

There. Wasn't that simple?

I honestly think few myths have done as much damage to the world as the idea that we each have one person out there who is "the one" and we could never truly be happy with anyone else so any crazy thing we do "for love" is automatically justified.

who fully expects Nora Ephron to go out and write a romantic, schmaltzy movie about a woman who falls in love with the priest who has been giving her spiritual counsel and is explicably married to her sister. BUT THAT WON'T MAKE IT RIGHT

Monday, December 22, 2008

Another day, another meme

1. Aside from reading, my favorite pastimes are -having long conversations.

2. If I were not a desk driver, I would be -desperately looking for another job. Most of the jobs I like are pretty desk-oriented

3. I am irrationally worried about -Flunking out of law school or getting pregnant at a really inconvenient time*.

4. If I were the opposite sex -I would have one less irrational worry.

5. The thing I miss most about childhood is -umm... err... No! Wait! I got one! No, nevermind. Seriously, I wasn't a particularly happy kid and I wouldn't have any of it back for anything.

6. I like to collect - erotic novels, snowglobes

7. Though I’ve never been there, I feel inexplicably homesick for -Salterton, Canada, where Robertson Davies' Salterton Trilogy is set.

8. I’ve never really liked to eat - marshmellows, though I will sometimes consume them around a campfire just to be a sport.

9. When I have nightmares, they’re usually about -Getting chased by wild dogs and/or hurting someone I love.

10. Magazines subscribed to: Lots of them, but the Economist, the ABA Journal and Entertainment Weekley are the only ones I read with any regularity.

who tags you, yes, you, with this meme. Answer on your blog on in the comments as appropriate.

*Somehow, when I imagine this, it's an inconvenient time for the entire world. Like everybody is pissed off to see my pregnant self as if I'm polluting the gene pool at a time when we particularly don't need that. That's what makes that one irrational. And as far as I can tell, nobody flunks out of law school, not even the kids who appear to be trying.

Book-on-Tape bleg

Hey, I'm leaving on Wednesday afternoon and driving down to Charlotte, NC, which is a seven hour drive minimum even in non-Christmas Eve conditions. I'm going to download a book on tape or two to my iphone and am open to suggestions.

Something beach-read-y would probably be perfect. If I don't get a suggestion I like more, I may get Harry Potter 6 since the movie is coming out, but I'd like to do something I haven't read. At the same time, it needs to be amusing enough to make me not hate life when I'm stuck in traffic.

Suggestions welcome.

I like mysteries, soft sci-fi and contemporary fiction, not so much the romance fan.

For non-fiction it would have to be, like, Freakonomics-level entertaining.


CC grasps the obvious

Obvious lessons I have re-learned in the last 72 hours through unrelated incidents:

1. Giving is better than recieving, and sometimes helping somebody out is the best anti-depressant there is.

2. Sometimes giving one's time is the best gift of all, and the most appreciated.

3. Those who a machinating, particularly young people, should bear in mind that someday, all the scheming and drama will be retrospectively hilarious.

4. Logic is just plan lost on some people.

5. Sleeping in doesn't necessarily cure all, but it does tend to help with symptoms.


Thursday, December 18, 2008

Playing Cinderella

Further discussion of my inaugural gown is going on at PB's Beauty Tips for Ministers blog.


CC can't sleep and writes more-or-less stream of consciousness for half an hour.

My annual Christmas blues are upon me.

Also, I had to drop the SmartCar off at the Mercedes dealership where everybody is a complete dick. Now that SmartCars are more well-known (Or maybe because I've only left the DC Metro area once since August) people don't ask me about the car as much as they used to. So now the most annoying thing about owning a SmartCar has become getting it fixed. There's a problem that keeps turning the check engine light on and theCSO thinks that if the car becomes legally a lemon we should have the paperwork to prove it.

And because Mercedes owns Smart and Smart has no repair shops of its own, tonight I dropped the SmartCar off at the Mercedes dealership with a service department that closes at seven in the fastest growing region of the DC metro area, where they don't touch SmartCars on Saturdays, can't fax you a service history and will, eyes gleaming, give you the third degree to make sure you haven't violated your warranty because it would be totally awesome if they didn't have to cover the repair. Oh, and last time they attempted to fix this problem, they freaking LOST my car and Joe-the-Math guy and I awkwardly stood around the service department for like half an hour, calling theCSO to ask him if he was quite certain the guy he had talked to was Jim and that Jim hadn't said anything about, oh, vaporizing the car.

What was weird was that I came home tonight and watched an episode of "Criminal Minds" where there was a serial killer targeting people who drove fancy cars. The juxtaposition might have been funny had it not been the most depressing episode ever. As it was, it was just kinda darkly ironic. Besides, I don't mind people who DRIVE fancy cars, clearly it's the guys who FIX fancy cars in the Tysons Corner area who are complete tools.

My better nature says that probably the root of the problem is that Mercedes customers are, on the whole, complete tools themselves and the Mercedes "customer service" people treat Smart customers like crap as a sort of vacation from the slavish service they give their REAL customers.

Hell, I can understand that. In college, I spent a very unhappy month folding neckties in the men's department of a department store at Christmas time.

This job has exactly two benefits:

1. The long crazy hours keep you out of your house.
2. Everyone who went to high school with you works at the same mall that month, allowing lots of opportunities to sneak off and make out with people whom you shouldn't have dated the first time, either. And now they can talk about economics.

But I digress.

Either because I was really good at folding ties or really bad (I never could tell) I was promoted to running the Coach counter for the last few weeks before Christmas. Thinking back, I'm fairly certain those Mercedes customer service guys all shopped for Coach products that season because half of my customers were exactly like them and talked to me like I was their overpriced-leather-goods-bearing-minion. The other half were annoying rubes who thought that I held the key to the magic status products that they could afford. "Is this wallet on sale? How about this one? Is that the REAL price?"

I longed to someday say "Gee, that wallet is COACH and it's CHRISTMAS EVE. Do YOU think it's on sale?"

But the thing is, I didn't, because I'm not a complete tool.

While we're on the subject of not being a complete tool, a guy in CVS who owed me sixteen dollars in change gave me thirty five because he mistook a twenty for a one. My cognizance of the number of study aids a free nineteen bucks could by a girl notwithstanding, I gave him his nineteen bucks back. In a perfect world, this post would be about how that restored my Christmas spirit.

Ah well.

Perhaps I should be trying to cheer myself up.

Ok, let's think of good things.

For example, thanks to the fact that I celebrate "Epiphany" with my parents and LinguistFriend in January, the first phase of my Christmas shopping is almost done. In contrast to my parents who are impossible to please, theCSO's parents and family in general are easy to shop for. I live out my nonfiction-reading fantasies through my father-in-law, who got, for example, a book about Alfred Hitchcock's relationships with women from us last year along with two other books I wanted to read. He likes insightful biographies and "the complete history of something completely random like flutes or coffee that turn out to have a long and interesting past and a wide-reaching impact on our culture" sorts of books. Also, stuff reviewed favorably in "The Economist."

So basically, smart people books that sound really cool, but are close enough to the type of reading that I do for school that I can't stand to read them when I'm at a semester break and don't have time to any other time.

Which is not to say I didn't buy myself a copy of that Hitchcock book, too. I will have to ask theCSO's dad at Christmas if it was any good.

I have not even done our Christmas card. Sigh. (CC designs her and theCSO's Christmas card every year.)

And I'd really like to throw an open house sort of deal on New Year's Day, but I don't know if anybody would be in town or come.

And work is high-pressure and I'm worried about my grades and... and.. and...

Half an hour is up and I'm going to try again to go to bed.


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

This is my new favorite website ever.

Because it was exactly what I needed today.

It brought me so much joy that I will even look past the fact that they insulted elephants.

who loves elephants.


Sorry I haven't been on the internet much. Finals are over, but work has been really stressful. I will be back soon.

FWIW Peacebang and Kim Hampton have had really cool things to say. Joel Monka, too.


Ps. A muslim woman was arrested after refusing to remove her headscarf as she entered a courthouse. Sigh.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

As promised: CC's Famous UU skit

My church does a celebration of famous UUs every Thanksgiving weekend, complete with famous UU skits acted out by the Sunday School classes.

I wrote YRUU's contribution this year.

It loses something on paper, but oh well.

(Lights come up. VOICEOVER PERSON stands at a mike. As VOICEOVER PERSON talks, ROD, CINDY and the other students are setting up tables and chairs onstage, perpendicular to the audience. Mrs. Denton stands in front of them.)

VOICEOVER PERSON: Portrait of a classroom. The year is 1946 and the place is Binghamton Central High School in Binghamton, New York and it’s a sleepy Friday afternoon in Mrs. Denton’s history class. The assignment was a reading on the wives of Henry the Eighth, a topic fascinating to historians but that has left most of the class daydreaming about tonight’s football game.

One student, however, one special student who would grow up to be a famous UU, has dreams all his own…

(The students take their seats, two or three to a table. CINDY is in the front row. ROD is in the last row. Voiceover can join the students or simply slip offstage. Meanwhile PIANO PLAYER has started to play sci-fi esque music. When everyone has taken his/her seat, Mrs. Denton speaks)

Mrs. Denton: Quiet, class.

(PIANO PLAYER keeps on playing. Students are chattering.)

Mrs. Denton: I said, QUIET!

(Students quiet down. PIANO PLAYER stops, looks nervous)

Mrs. Denton: Good afternoon, class. I hope you’ve done your homework.

(There are general nods. ROD stares off into space.)

Mrs. Denton: Let’s start from the beginning. Can someone tell me what Henry wanted from his wives? Rod?

(Rod jumps up and delivers his lines like a little kid describing a REALLY NEAT MOVIE)

ROD: He wanted to be alone, to read. More than anything. And then one day, he woke up and the palace was totally empty and he ran to his royal library and grabbed a book. But just then, he broke his glasses. He had all the time in the world to read and got only loneliness.

(Pause for a beat. Entire class is staring at ROD. He sits down.)

Mrs. Denton: That’s a very creative answer, Rod. But an incorrect one.

(CINDY waves her hand)

Mrs. Denton: Cindy?

(Cindy stands. For the rest of the show, all students stand when called on and sit back down when they’ve spoken.)

Cindy: The most important thing King Henry wanted from his wives was an heir.

Mrs. Denton (interrupting): Very good, Cindy. Now, Steve, did Henry’s first wife Catharine of Aragon have any children?

Steve: Yes, she had a daughter named Mary. But Mary was raised Catholic and King Henry became a Protestant, so she never got the throne of England.

Mrs. Denton: Excellent, Steve. Sarah, tell us about Catharine of Aragon.

Sarah: She and Henry were married for twenty years, but their only child was Mary.

Mrs. Denton: And?

Sarah: Eventually, Henry really started to want an heir and he thought it was her fault, so he divorced her and married Anne Boelyn.

Mrs. Denton: Very good, Sarah. Rod, what happened to Anne Boelyn?

(Again, Rod stands and delivers his lines in a dramatic manner.)

ROD: She was in a horrible accident and the doctors told her she was horribly disfigured, but when she took off the bandages she looked like a movie star. You see, all the doctors had pig noses, so it was really all about perspective and…

(Cindy jumps up)

CINDY: No! That’s not true at all! Henry got tired of Anne Boelyn and had her beheaded.

(Rod and Cindy sit.)

Mrs. Denton: Cindy? Rod’s answer was not impressive, but that’s no excuse to interrupt.

That said, your answer is correct. Now Anne Boelyn had a child. Who was Anne Boelyn’s child? Steve?

Steve: It was a girl named Elizabeth who grew up to be Elizabeth the first of England.

Mrs. Denton: We will learn a little bit more about her next week. Now, who was Henry’s third child? Sarah?

Sarah: Prince Edward.

(Rod is staring off into space.)

Mrs. Denton: Rod! Tell us about Prince Edward.

(Same line delivery as before)

Rod: He had these creepy powers and he could control the weather and make people disappear into a mysterious cornfield. So the whole palace had to pretend it was his birthday every day and they lived this meaningless, depressing existence and one guy tried to kill him, but…

Mrs. Denton (snaps): Rod Serling? You haven’t studied a BIT of this history. If you don’t start doing your homework, you’re going to grow up to be a big nothing.

ENTIRE CAST suddenly stares at audience and says in unison: OR WOULD HE?

(Piano player plays Twilight Zone theme.)

Voiceover: Greatness does not come only to kings and emporers. Famous Unitarian Universalist Rod Serling wrote television scripts that made people think and consider their values. Because of Rod Serling, Americans considered whether xenophobia might be more dangerous than an alien invasion, that power usually brings new responsibilities, and that sometimes the best way to ruin someone's life is to give them exactly what they think they want. Because of Rod Serling, and because of the Twilight Zone.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

CC so would have bought this tote bag

But it is sold out.

Oh well.


A night in the Ranjit

I once spent a very long night in the Ranjit hotel in New Delhi.

It was our first night in India. We weren't staying in the North very long. I'd brought of few old sweaters to wear in the cooler north part of the country, intending to give them away before I went down south.

But I hadn't brought enough sweaters. I wore every sweater I'd brought that night in the Ranjit, trying to get some sleep, but getting up every once in awhile to try to get the heater working. I would doze for awhile in the cold room, my dreams full of the mystical symbolism of neurochemical reactions to my anti-malaria medication, then I would wake up and fiddle with the heater.

Not everyone's heater was broken, but nobody had a great night of sleep in the Ranjit.

After that, we developed a phrase that would stick with us for the rest of the trip and comes back to me now.

"Have you been to the hotel?"

"Yeah. It was OK."

"Like, Ranjit ok?"

"Better than Ranjit OK."


Ranjit OK was the minimum standard for something not worth actively avoiding. Something Ranjit OK was survivable, but not comfortable. Acceptable, but not awesome. Tolerated, but not enjoyed.

Perhaps the best thing about something Ranjit ok was that feeling of the grizzled veteran, of being able to look at one another and mutter "Ranjit OK?" at unpleasant events that weren't exactly tragedies.

My corporations final?

Ranjit OK.


Wednesday, December 10, 2008


TheCSO and I have been mildly obsessed with over the last couple of days.

If you don't know about, you should. They typically sell one product a day. It's usually a great deal and shipping is only five bucks. Every once in awhile they do a "woot off" where they sell product after product one at a time over a period of days. It's really fun.

Anyway, the very second, they have a decent-looking electric guitar and amp for $89.00.

It's tempting, but I know people who would like an electric guitar and I know people who would not be annoying about having an electric guitar. I don't know anyone who meets both discriptions. (As much as I love ZombieKid and theGnome, who fall solidly into the first category but not the second.)

Oh well.

who bought HERSELF an awesome coffeemaker and has bought a few presents for other people.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

In honor of 'CC feels like a cavegirl day,' a special "Links of the Awesome"


Torture bad, World of Warcraft good. CC have moral delimma.

Good teachers good, Bad teachers bad.

Woot Off good

Corruption bad.

Sexy Christmas good

Sexy First Couple good too

Snarky apocryphal story about tort law good. Boring local gossip that follows bad.

Sexual Harassment by Captain Hook bad unless Captain Hook played by Patrick Stewart. Then OK.

SCOTUS no listen to crazy people. Good.

CC want to know why they call new automotive chief the "Czar." That title not inspire confidence in solid fiscal management. Joke stolen from CSO.


Guh. Finals week.

My billable hours are behind, my conversation is grunting and my hair is reminiscent of that episode of Buffy where the evil bar owner turns her into a cavegirl.

Corporations bad. Sleep good. CC want gimlet*.

Anyway, Peacebang is writing actual interesting things, so maybe you should check out her blog
because the best I'm going to be able to do is a discussion of the final episode of Boston Legal, which gave the best example of fan service to my baser and stupider desires I've seen since that episode of Bones where there was that scene where David Boreanaz was in the bathtub. (Different base and stupid desire, but still...)

Mmmm... David Boreanaz in the bathtub good.


*What? I'm a sophisticated cavegirl.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Questions that trouble the Chick

Yesterday, I made my facebook status "CC wants unambiguous and substantially correct answers to ambiguous questions, in law and life."

This morning, I had a response from someone saying "No you don't, or you would have asked me already."

So I decided to give him the chance to take a crack at the questions troubling me this week.

And why would I deny you the chance to do the same?

Feel free to "pass" on the questions you don't like. We law students do it all the time.


1. How do I justify loving art and goofing off and creature comforts in a world where so many are suffering and I could feed a kid in Africa for a year on what I spent on a painting on Saturday?

2. What’s the deal with my professor asking vague multiple choice questions but insisting that there’s one right answer when sometimes reasonable arguments could be made for up to three?

3. What duties do I have to the rest of humanity? To my family in particular?

4. Could you summarize the analytical framework that goes along with the federal taxation of a company’s loans to employees and shareholders, with specifics on what gets taxed when, and what gets capitalized when if the employee is working on a long-term capital project?

5. Is that old law school maxim “A’ students become judges and ‘B’ students work for ‘C’ students” really true? Because some of us are counting on it as our backup plan…

6. I am, at heart, quite an eccentric and moody person. But I have seen before how much being an eccentric and moody person that people don’t identify with and don’t understand gets in the way of having things I want and connecting with others. What’s the proper balance between living my life as I please and being someone that other people understand and root for?

7. So what’s the deal with corporate takeovers? In general and with specifics.

8. When I come across and idea or a philosophy I don’t get or don’t agree with, I have this little-kid-with-a-broken-alarm-clock need to take it apart, figure out how it works and see what the problem is. I do this by arguing or at least asking pointed questions. Some people think that’s fun and I can talk to those people for hours. But others tend to see me as stupid or a contrarian (or a racist, or a kneejerk liberal or an elitist or… or…) when I argue with ideas that they hold dear. Right now, my solution is to mostly move that nitpicky nature to the internet, but even there are there times when I should just shut it and let people think what they want without bugging them, and agree to disagree before I’ve gotten their argument down to the premises and pissed them off?

9. Is it actually moral for the government to use taxation to socially engineer as much as they do? To what degree should I accept the argument that what the government taxes, it controls? If I should accept, isn't progressive taxation with a deduction for the personal consumption costs of enough for food, shelter and preventative medical care and no other deductions at all the ideal?

Why did Buddha take forever to vacuum his sofa?

Because he didn't have any attachments.

who heard that from one of the secretaries at her firm this morning.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Saw "Four Christmases"

Despite having devoted a chunk of Thanksgiving weekend to goofing off in hopes of avoiding this, CC is feeling pretty burned out these days, a bad thing in someone who has two law exams in the next eight days.

(But who's counting?)

Desperate to think about something other than my potential career as a hobo with a J.D., I went to the movies with Jana-who-creates last night and saw "Four Christmases."

It was solidly ok without being awesome. Not nearly as good as "Ghost Town," the last thing she and I saw together.

LinguistFriend's longtime crush Mary Steenburgen was in it and did a good job. Actually, the casting was quite impressive. Vince Vaughn and Reese Witherspoon made a very believable couple with an interesting chemistry.

Maybe I just wasn't in the mood.


Thursday, December 04, 2008

and people think Washingtonians can't be festive...

Stolen from like every blog I know

See more Jack Black videos at Funny or Die

I love me some Alison Janney, but the Lady going "Obama Nation?" is the best part, IMHO.


Wednesday, December 03, 2008

CC examines Kwanzaa in the context of other American Cultural Holidays

Valentine’s Day
Historically: Probably originates from the feast of Lupercal, a Greek fertility festival. Swapping Valentines didn't really catch on until the Victorians.
How do we celebrate: By buying more greeting cards than on any other holiday, little kids exchanging candy, drinking alone in shame or ignoring it entirely.

St. Patrick’s Day
Historically: Catholic Religious holiday. Wasn’t even a bank holiday in Ireland until 1903.
How do we celebrate: Get drunk on green beer or ignore it entirely hoping that this will finally be the year that we go the entire day without our brain spontaneously chanting “We’re Here! We’re queer! We’re IRISH! Get used to it!”*

April Fools Day
Historically: The purpose of the holiday was to fuck with people who used the wrong calendar
How do we celebrate: Rubberband your favorite coworker’s chair to his/her desk, disbelieve news stories or ignore it entirely.

Mother’s Day
Historically: Cultural Holiday started in 1912 to celebrate mothers
How do we celebrate: Call Mom and/or take her to lunch. Really good kids buy presents. Bad kids ignore it entirely.

Father’s Day
See above, more or less

4th of July
Historically: Patriotic speeches, parades, picnics. Has been celebrated in some form or another since colonial times, but has only been a federal holiday since 1931
How do we celebrate: Patriotic speeches, parades, picnics. Public drunkenness and the occasional fireworks injury. A very hard holiday to ignore entirely, at least in my hometown.

Historically: Celtic harvest festival and the day before All Saints Day
How do we celebrate: Give candy to kids, get drunk in costume or ignore it entirely

Historically: Technically started with the Spanish having a mass to celebrate having arrived in Florida safely, but most people focus on some crap about the Pilgrims that mostly isn’t true. Wasn’t celebrated on the third Thursday in November until 1940.
How do we celebrate: Turkey, football, watching the Macy's parade and trying to explain the whole “Smallpox-infected blankets” thing to kids.

And finally…

Historically: Started in 1966 as an African-American cultural holiday.
How do we celebrate: Light candles, read African poetry, have a feast or ignore it entirely.

As far as I can see, almost all American cultural holidays are about:

1. Eating
2. Getting wasted
3. Pandering to little kids
4. Hanging out with your family and/or friends.
5. Smatterings of ritual here and there
6. Ignoring said holiday.

in some combination or another. The American cultural holidays that even existed 100 years ago weren't celebrated at all the same ways with the possible exception of Independence day and maybe Thanksgiving.

As far as I can tell, Kwanzaa is about all of the above excepting possibly getting wasted.

In this context, how the hell is Kwanzaa any phonier than MOST of America's cultural holidays?

who has no plans to celebrate Kwanzaa now or ever, but geez...

*Oh Crud, now it's in my head.

Jana's Mama hearts Obama

I intended to post this like a month ago, but I forgot. Jana-who-Creates' parents were up visiting for Thanksgiving and we had dinner with them and Joe-the-Math-Guy, who came to visit us. It went really well and I even tried giblet gravy because that's the kind of good sport I am.

I had hosted a brunch that morning for their family and my family, which went well enough though I was a total mess for the entire time my brothers and my best friend's parents were in the same house as I was fairly certain Oliver would break out the social views he picked up in prison and I really wanted Jana's parents to think I was OK. Friendship is like dating in a lot of ways, though thank goodness the standards are lower.

They liked me fine, but theCSO was the really big hit, which is often the case.

Anyway, here's Jana's Mama with Obama. (I had to say it again.)


Monday, December 01, 2008

What has CC done with her life?

(Things I've done are in bold. Meme stolen from Earthbound Spirit)

Started my own blog
Slept under the stars

Played in a band
Visited Hawaii
Watched a meteor shower
Given more than I can afford to charity
Been to Disneyland/world

Climbed a mountain
Held a praying mantis
Sung a solo
Bungee jumped
Visited Paris
Watched lightning at sea
Taught myself an art from scratch
Adopted a child
Had food poisoning
Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
Grown my own vegetables
Seen the Mona Lisa in France
Slept on an overnight train
Had a pillow fight

Taken a sick day when not ill
Built a snow fort
Held a lamb
Gone skinny dipping

Run a marathon
Ridden in a gondola in Venice
Seen a total eclipse
Watched a sunrise or sunset
Hit a home run

Been on a cruise
Seen Niagara Falls in person
Visited the birthplace of my ancestors
Seen an Amish community

Taught myself a new language
Had enough money to be truly satisfied
Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
Gone rock climbing
Seen Michelangelo's David
Sung karaoke
Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
Visited Africa
Walked on a beach by moonlight
Been transported in an ambulance
Had my portrait painted
Gone deep sea fishing
Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
Kissed in the rain
Played in the mud

Gone to a drive-in theater
Been in a movie
Visited the Great Wall of China
Started a business
Taken a martial arts class
Visited Russia
Served at a soup kitchen
Sold Girl Scout Cookies

Gone whale watching (though I did see some, once)
Gotten flowers for no reason
Donated blood, platelets or plasma

Gone sky diving
Visited a Nazi concentration camp
Bounced a check
Flown in a helicopter
Saved a favorite childhood toy
Visited the Lincoln Memorial
Eaten caviar

Pieced a quilt
Stood in Times Square
Toured the Everglades
Been fired from a job
Seen the Changing of the Guard in London

Broken a bone
Been on a speeding motorcycle
Seen the Grand Canyon in person
Published a book
Visited the Vatican
Bought a brand new car
Walked in Jerusalem
Had my picture in the newspaper
Read the entire Bible
Visited the White House
Killed and prepared an animal for eating
Had chickenpox
Saved someone's life
Sat on a jury
Met someone famous
Joined a book club
Lost a loved one
Had a baby
Seen the Alamo in person
Swam in the Great Salt Lake
Been involved in a law suit and I've been a witness in a criminal trial
Owned a cell phone
Been stung by a bee

Ridden an elephant (I've had the chance many times, but have you ever seen an elephant ride where the elephant didn't look depressed and miserable?)
Read all three volumes of the Lord of the Rings

My additions to the list:

Visited the Taj Mahal
Performed in a dance recital
Been on horseback while the horse jumped over something

Won an athletic competition
Gotten a straight-A report card
Prayed to Zeus
Watched news coverage, rapt, to see what was going to happen
Gotten lost in a building more than 500 years old
Kissed somebody milliseconds before bells started to ring

Joel Monka's additions to the list

Made love in a moving vehicle (For the sake of argument, let's say sailboats count as vehicles)
Created something you know you'll never better
Held a pet while they died
Walked the Promenade Des Anglaises in Nice

Patrick Murfin's Additions to the list:

Graduated from college
Been in Prison (Only in the most technical sense. I spent a night in a newly-built jail one time to help them train gaurds. It was fun.)
Written the Great American Novel
Ridden the rails In the train sense, yes. In the colonial punishment sense, no.
Seen that Alaska
Been booed and/or heckled
Been elected to public office