Thursday, April 30, 2009

Andy Borowitz today

Obama Quits While Ahead

Prez Resigns After Hundred Days: ‘All Downhill From Here'

In a move that stunned both political allies and foes alike, President Barack Obama resigned today after serving 100 days in office, telling the White House press corps, "It's all downhill from here."

The reporters seemed stunned by the President's decision in light of the fawning media coverage he received during his first 100 days, but the hyperbolic nature of that reportage, ironically, may have been the prime motivator behind Mr. Obama's shocking move.

"Let's face it, I'm not going to get better coverage than I have to date," he said. "The only guy with a higher approval rating is that dude who landed the plane on the Hudson - or maybe that other dude who escaped from those pirates."

Mr. Obama may have a point, as current polls show that the only Americans with higher approval ratings are members of his immediate family.

According to the latest University of Minnesota/Opinion Research Institute survey, Mr. Obama's 67% approval rating is topped by First Lady Michelle Obama at 84%, with daughters Sasha and Malia and dog Bo tied at 98%.

Even the President's little-known half-brother George Obama, who resides in Nairobi, Kenya, garnered a 73% thumbs-up in the poll.

As the press corps reeled from the news of Mr. Obama's resignation, one White House source suggested that the First Lady may have been behind the decision: "Around Day 95 or so, Michelle was running out of wardrobe changes."

At the Supreme Court, Chief Justice John Roberts said that he stood ready to swear in the nation's new chief executive, whom he called "President Biden R. Joseph."

Mr. Biden is scheduled to deliver his Inaugural address on Friday at noon and wrap it up sometime late Sunday.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

lighten up

Two items of vast interest:

First, this atypical post from a blog I read regularly (that's normally about eating pork products in eastern Europe).

Next, a gallery of Peeps constructions, from neighbor/cousin-in-law Laurie - thanks!

Can you believe the non-stop "Be VERY Afraid" coverage of the flu thing? This goes so far beyond the "wash your hands regularly and don't panic" advice that is appropriate at this stage, and the dramatic increase in emergency-room visits, from people who are 'worried', is testimony to the power of Media.

I try to look for the silver lining: if this does turn out to be a world-wide pandemic that causes the deaths of millions, I'd prefer to think of it as a signal from the Earth that our species is getting a little too disruptive.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I had to laugh

Received this in an email from Dara - many thanks!
Here is the Washington Post's Mensa Invitational which once again asked readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition.

Here are the winners:

1. Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period of time.

2. Ignoranus : A person who's both stupid and an asshole.

3. Intaxicaton : Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with.

4. Reintarnation : Coming back to life as a hillbilly.

5. Bozone ( n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future.

6. Foreploy : Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of getting laid.

7. Giraffiti : Vandalism spray-painted very, very high

8. Sarchasm : The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.

9. Inoculatte : To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.

10. Osteopornosis : A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit.)

11. Karmageddon : It's like, when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it's like, a serious bummer.

12. Decafalon (n.): The grueling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you.

13. Glibido : All talk and no action.

14. Dopeler Effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.

15. Arachnoleptic Fit (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you've accidentally walked through a spider web.

16. Beelzebug (n.) : Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.

17. Caterpallor ( n.): The color you turn after finding half a worm in the fruit you're eating.

The Washington Post has also published the winning submissions to its yearly contest, in which readers are asked to supply alternate meanings for common words.

And the winners are:

1. Coffee ( n.): The person upon whom one coughs.

2. Flabbergasted ( adj.): Appalled by discovering how much weight one has gained.

3. Abdicate ( v.): To give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.

4. esplanade ( v.): To attempt an explanation while drunk.

5. Willy-nilly ( adj.): Impotent.

6. Negligent ( adj.): Absentmindedly answering the door when wearing only a nightgown.

7. Lymph ( v.): To walk with a lisp.

8. Gargoyle ( n.): Olive-flavored mouthwash.

9. Flatulence ( n.): Emergency vehicle that picks up someone who has been run over by a steamroller.

10. Balderdash ( n.): A rapidly receding hairline.

11. Testicle ( n.): A humorous question on an exam.

12. Rectitude ( n.): The formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.

13. Pokemon ( n.): A Rastafarian proctologist.

14. Oyster ( n.): A person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddishisms.

15. Frisbeetarianism ( n.): The belief that, after death, the soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there.

16. Circumvent ( n.): An opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish men

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

un milagro!

Remember back on March 12th, when I placed 20 asparagus crowns into a newly-dug bed in our back yard? I've been fretting and watering all this time, and this morning, lo and behold, three of the crowns are sprouting. The magic worked!

Here's the largest - about 3 inches:

In other gardening news, the bok choys are doing well, as are the onions. Out of the first planting of (old) pea seeds, only 7 sprouted. I re-planted with newer seeds the other day.

I think I'll be harvesting the first rhubarb in a couple of days.

None of the lettuces, chard, cilantro, chives, or catnip came up, which is disappointing. I must have done something wrong.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

more tea-party reflections

It's too easy to laugh it off, for two reasons.

1) There is a kernel of truth to the protests: us Common Folk are uneasy to see the billions of dollars that have been funneled to banks and investment agencies who, thru their manipulations of laws, regulations, and suckers, created the mess. Will anyone from that crowd ever go to jail?

2) History has shown that, whenever the Populace is whipped into (currently, largely-unfocused) rage, things have a tendency to get out of control. The French Revolution, the Spanish Inquisition, Rwanda, and Slobodan Milosovic come to mind. In this case, we have people who appear to get their marching orders from Richard Mellon Scaife, Dick Armey and FOX, and many of them appear to be hateful and armed.

It's more and more like Spain, 1936. Just sayin'.

UPDATE: Just for grins, I looked up where in the world most of the tea comes from. Turns out that India and China are, by far, the top two. Isn't it ironic that the participants in yesterday's activities were encouraged to purchase a product from two of our top global business competitors?

What about 'Buy American'? If the organizers really wanted to give a boost to the US economy, instead of tea, why didn't they encourage everyone to buy something manufactured right here in the good ol' USA?

Oh, right, I forgot.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

tea-party fun

A number of blogs are covering these 'spontaneous' events, and the participants are, true to form, generally hilarious.

I especially liked this photo:

'Cut Taxes, Not Defense' - I get it, because the money that funds the DoD (and all the related Defense industries) must certainly come from somewhere besides taxes, right?

Morans, indeed.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Is it Spring yet?

April 13th and it's either sleeting or hailing at the moment.

Didn't last long, but it was a surprise.

Currently reading: 'When you are engulfed by Flames', by David Sidaris. Hilarious.

Friday, April 10, 2009

it's worse than you thought...

Part I, from Bill Moyers' program, on the true state of banks and the deliberate failure of regulation.

Part II, from the LA times on climate change in Australia.

Part III, it's no longer "don't drink the water" in Mexico City - it's "no water for you today".

Not only that, but, in a few hours, Jesus will die on the cross again.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

coleman/franken situation - I am confused

So, it appears that just about all authorities in Minnesota have concluded that Franken won, but the GOP is still promising further appeals. There can be no other explanation, other than their determination to keep Al out of the Senate as long as possible, to prevent the Dems from approaching the 'magic' 60 votes.

I am bewildered by the must-have-60-votes to get anything done in the Senate. Whatever happened to simple-majority? It appears that the magic 60 is simply a rule that everyone agreed to, at some point.

The Senate makes its own rules. Is there anything to prevent Harry Reid from proposing a rule change that, since there are only 99 seated senators, the new fillibuster-proof count is 59, not 60?

Monday, April 06, 2009

vegetable update

In the pea-lettuce-chard patch, the first peas are coming up! I had just about given up hope, but it's really happening. So far, no lettuce, spinach or chard is visible.

Also planted chives, cilantro and cat-nip last week, in the bed right outside the back-door.

Yesterday, at Fred Meyer, I couldn't resist buying a 6-pack of bok choy for $3, so now there are 14 little boks, in the ground today:We also bought onion sets (walla-wallas) yesterday. Will plant them this afternoon. Last year, we did onions and I was so stingy with water that, although they grew, many had hollow bulbs. The ones that we got, though, were good, so I'll try to be better this time around.

So far, not much happening with the asparagus crowns. Hope they're still alive.

High of 73 expected today; 77 tomorrow.

Here's a cell-phone photo of Ben and Dylan, taken in Ashland last Thursday night. When we saw Dylan Saturday, prior to heading back to Portland, he was totally clean-shaven, so this is a historical moment:

Don't be fooled by the empty tables in the background. The cafe was jammed and we had a long wait before being seated. The beer was very good, and 3/4 of us were happy with our meals.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

hmmm, what have we here?


Meanwhile, we are back in Portland after three fun days in Ashland. Went to a play and did a short Rogue River raft trip yesterday afternoon.

Even managed to see Dylan now and then, although he somehow didn't seem excited about spending time with family, versus his many friends.