Monday, December 31, 2007

What are You Doing New Years?

OK, are you going out to dinner? A Party? Spending the evening with friends? Family? Do you have a New Years tradition? Will you be watching the ball drop at midnight in NYC? Are you one of the many people grateful that 2007 is almost over? I'm one of the latter.

For me, New Year's eve has always been a non holiday. Fortunately, it's the only one that contains an element of desperation. So many try too hard to have a good time, and usually at the expense of someone else. That's not for me.

I'll be thrilled when I slide beneath the sheets tonight to thank God for those who helped me get through 2007; knowing that I will sleep away the final hours of this year.

To my mind New Year's eve, like Thanksgiving, is a time to count our blessings and let go of the flotsam and jetsam that made up the ugly, the stupid, the vile, as well as the painful moments we experienced. I know. Easier said than done.

More important is to remember those moments when our behavior toward others was less than stellar. The New Year is our opportunity to change that sort of behavior.

My wish to you for 2008 is that you keep every resolution you make; that you remember the lessons learned in 2007; that you have folks in your life who will call you on your BS; that you work hard to be the person you know you can be. Give back, volunteer to help others, speak your truth, pray for the best for everyone you know (even the unfriendly) while working even harder to make your own dreams a reality.

Here's to 2008. Cheers!

"Invisible Champagne" image is from HERE.

More later.

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Sunday, December 30, 2007

The 12 Days of Christmas

The best 12 days of Christmas I've heard in a long time. Done a-cappella and done very well.





If you want to see a tongue-in-cheek (cheek being the operative word here) ongoing version, go visit my friend's place. HERE.

More later.

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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Benedict's Exorcist Squads

This makes one wonder what century we're in; 1507 or 2007.

The Pope has ordered his bishops to set up exorcism squads to tackle the rise of Satanism.

Vatican chiefs are concerned at what they see as an increased interest in the occult.

They have introduced courses for priests to combat what they call the most extreme form of "Godlessness."

Each bishop is to be told to have in his diocese a number of priests trained to fight demonic possession.

The initiative was revealed by 82-year-old Father Gabriele Amorth, the Vatican "exorcistinchief," to the online Catholic news service Petrus.

"Thanks be to God, we have a Pope who has decided to fight the Devil head-on," he said.

"Too many bishops are not taking this seriously and are not delegating their priests in the fight against the Devil. You have to hunt high and low for a properly trained exorcist.

"Thankfully, Benedict XVI believes in the existence and danger of evil - going back to the time he was in charge of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith." The CDF is the oldest Vatican department and was headed by Benedict from 1982, when he was Cardinal Ratzinger, until he became Pope in 2005.

Father Amorth said that during his time at the department Benedict had not lost the chance to warn humanity of the risk from the Devil.

He said the Pope wants to restore a prayer seen as protection against evil that was traditionally recited at the end of Catholic Masses. The prayer, to St Michael the Archangel, was dropped in the 1960s by Pope John XXIII.


Why don't they have classes teaching priests to keep their hands (and other things) away from children? Seems to me that Benny's been hitting the Communion wine again.

The story gets more tongue and cheek here.

More later.

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Thursday, December 27, 2007

A Truly Merry Christmas. What a Surprise.

Christmas has come and gone and I have to say, mine was much better than expected. Received two phone calls from friends far away in the morning, had dinner at a friend's home in the afternoon that included the usual suspects I dined with last Sunday evening, plus 5 others. It was a four hour feast and laugh fest.

It's always a luxury for me when 11 gay guys can get together to discuss diverse topics and actually add to the narrative, rather than watch the conversation spiral downward into a bitch-fest.

Everyone was mellow and relaxed. Including myself. There was a yule log video playing on the HDTV and while we enjoyed various appetizers and conversations, the host focused on the timing of various dishes and refused many offers of kitchen help. That was probably for the best. The meal was the best I've had in long time while the company was just as grand.

As I unlocked the apartment door the phone was ringing. It was delightful to hear the voice of an old friend who had lost track of me. More laughter and joy. That call was an unexpected gift on Christmas evening. We reconnected and I slept well that night.

Only one more holiday to get through - New Year's Eve - then I am finally finished with my previous life.

Together we all say, Amen.

More later.
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City of God Appeal - Day 27

This is so amazing I am proud to post this incredible update from MadPriest over at OCICBW. Pay him a visit.

We did not receive any donations on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. That is only as it should have been. There are some days on which it is right and proper to concentrate on things near to home. However, today things started to move forward again and our new total is:

$6229.51

The appeal will run until the 6th. January, 2008 at which point the PayPal facility will close. We will then wait seven days for any last minute cheques to turn up and then the money will be transferred, in full, to Christ the King in Rio. After that, any monies that turn up will be divided equally between That Kaeton Woman and myself and will be spent on riotous living.

So, time is now of the essence. If you have been considering making a donation then consider your arm well and truly twisted and make that donation while your brain is still nicely befuddled by Christmas good cheer. Or, maybe, like me, you are waiting for your pay cheque to come in at the end of this month, having blown last month's supporting western capitalism at its most grasping. If so, you will still have six full days to make your donation.

And don't forget, it's the dribs and drabs that count (even I believe that bit in the Bible). The OCICBW... Community Appeal doesn't turn away anything, not even the most meagre widow's mite (heck - we'd snatch her hand off!).

We've received an email from Father Eduardo:

Dear Revd's Jonathan and Elizabeth.

All of us here in Cidade de Deus are extremely thankful for your compassionate offering. We plan to use it primarily with our children ministry, and with infrastructure updating in order to support better classrooms, kitchen and other resources for the children and our community per se.

I'd also want to apologize for not corresponding much. My English is not as good as Luiz's and he didn't have much time recently to revise my texts, since he's just moved to the US to advance in his art and theology studies.

Have a blessed Christmas. May the birth of Jesus represent a rebirth of hope in your hearts. I hope we can stay connected after Christmastide, especially now that we will have an USPG missionary working with us, Fr. Nicholas Wheeler (Diocese of London), who will be able to communicate better in English.

Best regards,

Fr. Eduardo Costa and all of us in Cidade de Deus


The OCICBW... Community Christmas Appeal this year is raising money to help pay for the work being done by the Anglican Church of Christ the King in the City Of God district of Rio De Janeiro. Full details about the project and how to send your gifts can be found HERE.

And don't forget to

And if possible, advertise the appeal on your own sites as this belongs to all of us.

More later.
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Monday, December 24, 2007

A Merry Christmas Adam

Well, that's what I'm calling last evening, December 23, since today is, after all, Christmas EVE. I was not needed at the job yesterday, so I spent some quiet time at home wrapping up some lose ends on projects put off for the past few busy weeks, and then went out to dinner with a few friends and laughed for a few hours.

It was unseasonably warm yesterday with heavy rains and gusty winds, but that didn't deter us from our intended good time. The prime rib was delicious, as usual and way too much for one meal. I brought half of it home with me.

Driving back in the dark in heavy rain made it difficult to see the slick and shiny roadway. It was a bit scary, but I had a friend with me and we made it back OK.

There is a clear blue sky today and it's a bit cooler, though still unseasonably warm for December. There's a trip to the supermarket on my list of things to do today, and then a stop at the store for a cup of spiked eggnog before returning home.

It's turning out to be a more festive Christmas than I expected. That's always a good thing.

Merry Ho-Ho to all.

Image from HERE.

More later.

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Sunday, December 23, 2007

Warm and Fuzzy Holiday Story

This is from a Washington State newspaper:

Marysville coffee drinkers pay it forward
One person's good deed begets another, and another ...
By Scott Pesznecker
Herald Writer
MARYSVILLE -- Lindsey Molstad of Stanwood was pleasantly surprised Wednesday afternoon when a man in a sports car with Texas plates paid for her vanilla latte and her daughters' hot chocolates.
She wasn't the first to receive the holiday cheer.
At the Starbucks on 116th Street NE in Marysville, a chain of more than 350 people bought coffee for the people in line behind them -- either in the drive-through or inside -- starting with a woman who first came in about 8 a.m.
"I think it's awesome," said Molstad, 28, who had just picked up her daughters on her way home from work. "I feel really bad because I ordered drinks for my kids, and the person behind me only had one."
Starbucks employee Michael Smith of Marysville was working the drive-through window when the first woman drove through and paid for the next customer.
When he explained to the next person what happened, that customer decided to pass the good will along, Starbucks shift supervisor Sarah Nix said.
Then the next person followed suit. And the next person. And the next person.
Once the chain picked up, Smith refused to leave the drive-through window. He saw it as a special trust given to him by that first customer.
"I'm really worried they're going to stop," he said Wednesday afternoon, after the chain surpassed 250 people.
During the holidays, it's not uncommon for customers to occasionally buy coffee for whomever is next in line, said Nix, who used to work at the Starbucks in Lake Stevens.
But she's never seen anything like this.
"I'm really shocked," Nix said. "This makes Christmas so much nicer, knowing people care."
Some customers went above and beyond paying for the next person, giving $15 or $20 to the coffee shop. Any extra money that isn't used to pay for drinks is planned to be used for Starbucks' holiday toy drive, Nix said.
Randy Davis, 49, of Camano Island read a newspaper at the Starbucks while sipping a cup of coffee someone else paid for. He said he's bought coffee for strangers before, but he's never heard of so many people paying it forward.
"It's a lot of people," said Davis, a science teacher at Marysville-Pilchuck High School. "It's kind of cool. It's neat to see that people still appreciate stuff like that."

I know some of us have done this in the past. Didn't it make you feel good?

More later.
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Saturday, December 22, 2007

It's a Larry Craig Christmas

Enuf said:













Are you ready for the holidays? Me neither.Who cares? Just enjoy.

More later.

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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Reuters: Yale Top Ten Quotes of 2007

Here they are, the top ten quotes of 2007.

10. "I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history." - Jimmy Carter.

9. "I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that's a storybook, man." - Sen. Joe Biden, speaking about Barack Obama.

8. "(I have) a wide stance when going to the bathroom." - Sen. Larry Craig.

7. "I'm not going to get into a name-calling match with somebody who has a 9 percent approval rating." Sen. Harry Reid, speaking about Dick Cheney.

6. "There's only three things he mentions in a sentence: a noun and a verb and 9/11." - Sen. Joe Biden, speaking about Rudy Giuliani.

5. "I don't recall." - Former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.

4. "That's some nappy-headed hos there." Don Imus.

3. "In Iran we don't have homosexuals like in your country." - Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

2. "I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because some people out there in our nation don't have maps and I believe that our education like such as in South Africa and the Iraq and everywhere like such as and I believe that they should our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S. or should help South Africa and should help Iraq and the Asian countries so we will be able to build up our future for us." - Miss South Carolina.

1. "Don't tase me, bro!" - UF student Andrew Meyer.

You'll note that Joe Biden made the list twice. I'm just sayin'.

More later.

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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

A Few Seasonal Blessings

Today was an eventful and surprisingly happy one. Every errand went smoothly without hitches. With only this one day to myself, I especially appreciate when that happens.

Even an appointment with the Dentist went well. No problems so I am apparently doing most everything I’ve been told. That’s quite an accomplishment.

Then, this afternoon and evening I enjoyed the company of a friend who invited me over to use her oven to bake my grandmother’s holiday pumpkin bread. You see it’s like this, my apartment doesn’t include an oven. It’s a long story. So, when my friends and co-workers realized this I was quickly asked to come over and bake to my heart’s content. So I did.

After a hunting expedition through the storage unit to find the box containing the recipes, I went shopping and brought all the ingredients. She provided the Kitchen Aid, the oven, good conversation and assistance. It was wonderful to bake again for the holidays. Only two batches this year because there are fewer friends to receive them.

While the breads baked we wrapped a few gifts destined for her family and friends. As the loaves cooled we enjoyed cups of steaming cider with cinnamon sticks and at the same time playing with her two beautiful kitties.

By the time I left for home, to our delight her home smelled like my grandmother’s did when I was a kid. Nice memories there.

Now home for the duration I am feeling very much at peace with the season and myself. A blessing, indeed.

More later.

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Senator Dodd and the FISA Bill

Chris Dodd was the only presidential candidate to rush back to DC to fight this bill which, as it stands now would give immunity to the Telecoms rather than make them accountable. Here's what the NYT has to say:

Senator Christopher J. Dodd, the Connecticut Democrat and presidential candidate, spent much of the day attacking the idea of giving immunity to the phone companies, and he took credit for the delay.

“Today we have scored a victory for American civil liberties and sent a message to President Bush that we will not tolerate his abuse of power and veil of secrecy,” Mr. Dodd said in a statement.

“The president should not be above the rule of law, nor should the telecom companies who supported his quest to spy on American citizens,” he said. “I thank all my colleagues who joined me in fighting and winning a stay in the rush to grant retroactive immunity to the telecommunications companies who may have violated the privacy rights of millions of Americans.”

Where in hell were Hillary, Obama, and McCain? Are they OK with the bill as it reads now? Maybe someone should ask them about this. Uh huh, like that's going to happen.

More later.

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UPDATE: I just received an email from Senator Dodd thanking me for supporting his effort. In the message he included a link to a video he posted last night thanking everyone (seems Congress received more than five hundred thousand messages over the last few days).

Anyway, here's the link to the video

More later.
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Monday, December 17, 2007

Author Allen Berube Dies

He wrote "Coming Out Under Fire" about gays in the military during the WW II. I had the great pleasure of meeting him at a book signing when the book was first published. So sad. From the NYT"

Allan Bérubé, a MacArthur Award-winning independent scholar whose history of gay men and lesbians in the military in World War II is widely considered the definitive book on the subject, died on Tuesday in Liberty, N.Y. He was 61. A former resident of Manhattan, Mr. Bérubé had lived in Liberty in recent years.

The cause was complications of stomach ulcers, a friend, Wayne Hoffman, said.

“Coming Out Under Fire” (Free Press), published in 1990, explores the uneasy but at times surprisingly benign relationship between the United States military and its gay members.

Mr. Bérubé’s book was invoked frequently during the debate that simmered in the 1990s around President Bill Clinton’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, which officially allowed gay people to serve in the military if they kept their sexual orientation secret.

“Coming Out Under Fire” was also the basis for a documentary film of that name, released in 1994.

The book sprang from a box of letters. One day in the 1970s, a friend of one of Mr. Bérubé’s neighbors salvaged from a Dumpster a cache of correspondence exchanged by a dozen gay G.I.’s during the war. The men, who had met at an Army base in Missouri, were posted to different spots, but they continued to write — in particular about what it was like to be gay wherever they had fetched up.

The letters found their way to Mr. Bérubé. “I sorted them out and had a good cry,” he told the University of Chicago alumni magazine in 1997. “It really captured my heart and raised a lot of questions, so I started doing research.”

“Coming Out Under Fire” draws on interviews with dozens of men and women from all branches of the service. It argues that although gays were specifically barred from the armed forces from 1942 onward, homosexuality and military service, at least early on, were not as incompatible as they might seem.

At the start of World War II, the military, desperate to meet enlistment quotas, quietly admitted gay people with the tacit understanding that they would be discreet about their sexuality. For many gay men and lesbians, Mr. Bérubé wrote, military service was actually a godsend: It took them away from small-town life and gave them their first opportunity to meet other gay people.

On the whole, Mr. Bérubé found, gay service people who did their jobs ably were treated well by comrades and superiors. (Conditions worsened toward the end of the war, when the military stepped up its purges of homosexuals.) But those early war years, Mr. Bérubé concluded, were the wellspring of the gay-rights movement of the late 1960s and beyond.

Reviewing “Coming Out Under Fire” in The New York Times Book Review, Doris Kearns Goodwin called it “a timely and valuable perspective,” adding: “Mr. Bérubé tells his story with a clear and remarkably evenhanded voice.”


Read the rest here.

More later.
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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Olbermann and Moyers

Two of my favourite people. This interview is just plain wonderful. I don't have access to PBS so I found it online and it's a breath of fresh air.

Treat yourself to this insightful interview. We all deserve this kind of journalism.

Go to the site and watch it for yourself. HERE.

More later.

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Friday, December 14, 2007

Levees.org Video Reposted on YouTube

YouTube was forced to removed this video produced by NOLA high school students after being threatened with a law suit. Glad to find out today that the video is back.

I love this.....from the Times Picayune:

Levees.org on Friday reposted to YouTube a satirical video filmed by high school students that is critical of the relationship between the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Army Corps of Engineers, after the group was promised free representation by two local law firms in the event it is sued.

"We have something to say today to the president of the American Society of Civil Engineers," said Levees.org President Sandy Rosenthal during a news conference in a restored Lakeview home a few blocks from the 17th Street Canal. "We reject your threats and we will not stop publicizing our video." (my emphasis)

In a letter to ASCE general Counsel Thomas Smith III, one of the attorneys for Levees.org warned that any lawsuit against the organization might trigger Louisiana's "Anti-SLAPP" statute, which allows courts to weed out lawsuits designed to chill public participation on matters of public significance.

Here is the video now available at YouTube.... Take a look.

More later.

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Jody Foster Comes Out

Even though we've all known for years...

After guarding her private life fiercely for 15 years, Hollywood actress Jodie Foster has publicly acknowledged her lesbian partner.

The Oscar-winning actress thanked "my beautiful Cydney" after winning an award at the Women in Entertainment Power 100 breakfast in Los Angeles.

She went on to praise Cydney Bernard, saying the film producer "sticks with me through all the rotten and the bliss".

Despite more than a decade of speculation, questions over the paternity of her two sons and critics calling for her be “out and proud”, Foster has refused to discuss her sexuality.

Read more here.

More later.
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Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Gay Marriage: Obstacle to World Peace?

Yeah, that's what Benny said. We wield more power than we know, apparently.


Presenting the nuclear family as the "first and indispensable teacher of peace" and the "primary agency of peace," the 15-page document links sexual and medical ethics to international relations.

"Everything that serves to weaken the family based on the marriage of a man and woman, everything that directly or indirectly stands in the way of its openness to the responsible acceptance of new life ... constitutes an objective obstacle on the road to peace," Benedict writes.


Read it all here.

More later.

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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Month Five - Still No Check

I received an email from someone who found the anonymous site last year and passed the info along to a male friend who was, unfortunately, going through a similar life upheaval and was in an emotional meltdown. I know the feeling. He’s doing better now. We stay in touch.

Anyway, she’s been following the story of my phantom rent refund and asked if I had received it yet.

The answer, again unfortunately, is NO. But I still have hope. I know that he’s still in his house because he refused mail sent to me at his address, which was forwarded to my new address. The handwriting matches that of the original note promising the refund. Remember the note?

The email friend was not pleased as she replied, “it’s not the amount of money at stake that pisses me off, it’s that he would promise anything to get you out knowing what you were dealing with emotionally and financially and didn't really intend to follow through. What a dick! You know, there is always Small Claims court.”

That is a possibility in the back of my mind, but I will wait this out for a while longer because frankly, right now I have enough on my plate and the holidays to get through. Somehow I still hope that he will make good on his promise. After all, he considers himself a Christian.

Yes, I know, I know.

That said, in spite of everything I am pleased that he has his house.

More later.

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Monday, December 10, 2007

Help Save NOLA Public Housing

Watch this video:




From Facing South...

Next Monday, Dec. 10, is international Human Rights Day. It's also the day when activists in New Orleans are calling for actions opposing the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development plans to tear down more than 4,600 public housing units in four complexes across the city -- while replacing them with private, mixed-income developments that will set aside only 744 apartments for low-income people.
The decision to demolish these public complexes, which suffered only relatively minor damage [PDF] during Hurricane Katrina, comes as rents across the city have doubled since the storm -- as has the homeless population.

The activists are asking concerned citizens across the country to join the actions in New Orleans or to take action at home. According to a statement from Kali Akuno, director of the Stop the Demolition Coalition:

What is at stake with the demolition of public housing in New Orleans is more than just the loss of housing units: it destroys any possibility for affordable housing in New Orleans for the foreseeable future. Without access to affordable housing, thousands of working class New Orleanians will be denied their human right to return.

Although this situation is unique and urgent in the city of New Orleans, it does not occur in isolation. The plans for redevelopment here are part of a national assault on public housing, in which tens of thousands of homes have been demolished in the past decade.

Organizers are asking supporters from across the country to organize demonstrations at local HUD offices and other government buildings. They are also asking them to make calls to government officials demanding the reopening of public housing in New Orleans. Among those leaders they are asking people to call:

* New Orleans City Council Member Stacy Head, who has been a leading force in pushing for the tear-downs. Her number is 504-658-1020.

* New Orleans City Council Member Shelley Midura, who is being asked to oppose the demolitions and support the reopening of public housing. Her number is 504-658-1010.

* D.H. Griffin, the North Carolina-based contractor hired to demolish the Lafitte complex. For locations of the company's offices across the South, click here. The toll-free number is 888-336-3366.

* U.S. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), who's blocking passage of the Gulf Coast Housing Recovery Act (Senate Bill 1668). Sponsored by his colleague, Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), the measure would require any demolished public housing units to be replaced by other units available to low-income residents. Vitter can be reached in Washington at 202-224-4623 and New Orleans at 504-589-2753.

* Members of the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, where SB 1668 is currently stuck. They are Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii) at 202-224-6361, Wayne Allard (R-Colo.) at 202- 224-5941, Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) at 202-224-5623, Robert Bennett (R-Utah) at 202-224-5444, Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) at 202-224-2315, Jim Bunning (R-Ky.) at 202-224-4343, Tom Carper (D-Del.) at 202-224-2441, Robert Casey (D-Pa.) at 202-224-6324, Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) at 202-224-6142, Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) at 202-224-2823, Elizabeth Dole (R-N.C.) at 202-224-6342, Michael Enzi (R-Wyo.) at 202-224-3424, Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.) at 202-224-4224, Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) at 202-224-1638, Mel Martinez (R-Fla.) at 202-224-3041, Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) at 202-224-4744, Jack Reed (D-R.I.) at 202-224-4642, Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) at 202-224-0420, Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) at 202-224-5744, John Sununu (R-N.H.) at 202-224-2841 and Jon Tester (D-Mont.) at 202-224-2644.

Send information about any solidarity actions to action@peopleshurricane.org with "Solidarity" in the subject line. If you have any questions, contact the Stop the Demolition Coalition at action@peopleshurricane.org or call 504-458-3494. For more information on the issues at stake and planned protest actions, visit the websites of Defend New Orleans Public Housing, Justice for New Orleans and the People's Hurricane Relief Fund.

More later.
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Sunday, December 9, 2007

Huckabee is an AIDSphobic Bigot

No wonder he's the darling of the religious right today.

Shorter Huckabee on Fox News Sunday: "I didn't say we should quarantine people with AIDS, I just thought it was a bad thing that we hadn't done it. And I still agree with myself."

Mind you, he suggested this in 1992, a decade into the epidemic and he was still this stupid. And as the quote above clearly states, he'd be ready to do it today. What an ignorant bigot. I feel sick!

Follow the link and watch the video over at Think Progress.

More later.

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Friday, December 7, 2007

War on Greed

Just received an email from film maker Robert Greenwald of "Outfoxed" fame and this is one of his new projects. The film opened in NYC recently and he is sending out this short clip.



Go over to the War On Greed site to find out more.

More later.
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Thursday, December 6, 2007

Snowy Update

The snow ended sometime overnight after dumping 2.5 to 3 inches here. Yes, much more than expected. Local schools are closed, businesses are opening late, and blah blah. Too many accidents overnight and this morning caused by people who have no clue how to drive in show or ice.

Temps got down to 24' overnight and today's forecast, mentioned in yesterday's post, changed during that time, as well. High expected in the low 30s, not the 50s, but the sun is back and there is a clear blue sky, as promised.

Now it's time to go out and clear the snow and ice off the car. Oh Joy!

More later.
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Wednesday, December 5, 2007

It's Snow!


On the radio this morning the weather critter announced that there was a good chance of snow today, but no accumulation until tonight when, we were told to, 'expect about an inch'. Well, the snow began about 2 hours ago.

I snapped this image about an hour ago (from the front door) and now there is about a half inch of "no accumulation" on the ground and it's still coming down. I am told that the sun is still shining about 40 miles north of here.

Fortunately, I did the chores and ran all errands before the snowfall, so no reason to tackle the roads again today.

Tomorrow's forecast (if we are to believe it!) calls for sunny skies with a high in the low 50s. We shall see.

More later.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Christmas City of God Appeal


I'm late to the party, and sorry to be so, but please read this and give as you feel led. This is truly one of the best things about blogtopia. And yes, skippy coined the phrase.
MadPriest:

My goodness, what can I say? I'm flabbergasted. After just three days we have already raised $1950 and we know there are cheques in the post on top of this, so I'm pretty certain we've smashed through the $2000 ceiling already.

I will leave the hyperbole to my American associate because she's so much better at it than me. Suffice to say: WELL DONE, YOU CHAPS!

The OCICBW... Community Christmas Appeal this year is raising money to help pay for the work being done by the Anglican Church of Christ the King in the City Of God district of Rio De Janeiro. Full details about the project and how to send your gifts can be found HERE.

And don't forget to


And if possible, advertise the appeal on your own sites as this belongs to all of us.
The whole story can be found HERE.

And visit MadPriest at OCICBW. If you feel that you don't belong, you belong at that site.

More later.
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Just in Time for Christmas

With today's revealing story the ongoing sad saga of Larry Craig in the Statesman, where they finally write the results of their months long investigation. Four men have come forward and the article includes audio files containing graphic descriptions of the sex acts. NSFW.

So, Stupid dot com has come up with the perfect, timely gift for the GOP closet case in your life. The Larry Craig Action Figure. No joke. The figure comes with a tee shirt, has bendable limbs for recreating his infamous "wide stance" and if that isn't enough when you press a button he talks!

More later.
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Saturday, December 1, 2007

World Aids Day 2007


What’s happening where you are? Here’s what’s going on here.

Dec 1 • 6:15-6:30 pm Pre-Walk gathering and candle lighting at the Bandstand and the Boardwalk

Dec 1 • 6:30 pm Candlelight Walk of Remembrance and Hope begins at the Bandstand and the Boardwalk and snakes through the streets of town.

Dec 1 • 7:00 pm (or when the walk ends) Program continues at local Church. Program includes reading of names of friends/family members lost to the epidemic.

Dec 1 • 7:45 pm (or when the service ends) Light supper in the church hall, provided by a local Restaurant.

But most of all, remember those we have lost.

More later.

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Friday, November 30, 2007

NH: Hostages Taken at Clinton Campaign

Just read this at the Boston channel.

ROCHESTER, N.H. An armed man has taken two campaign workers hostage at the Hillary Clinton campaign office in Rochester, police said.

Officials with the campaign confirmed that there were two workers taken hostage in the office on 28 North Main St.. A woman and her baby told workers at a neighboring business that she was released by the hostage-taker.

“A young woman with a 6-month or 8-month-old infant came rushing into the store just in tears, and she said, ‘You need to call 911. A man has just walked into the Clinton office, opened his coat and showed us a bomb strapped to his chest with duct tape,’” witness Lettie Tzizik said.

There are several police officers positioned across the street from the office, crouched down behind cruisers with guns drawn, according to a reported at the scene.

“I walked out and I immediately started running, and I saw that the road was blocked off. They told me run and keep going,” said Cassandra Hamilton, who works in an office adjacent to the building.

Nearby businesses have been evacuated, and the St. Elizabeth Seaton School has been locked down.

“There are sharp shooters on the roof, and police are negotiating with someone in the building,” said another witness, who did not want to be identified. “The police are notifying all the business owners on the street to evacuate. There are fire trucks behind the Hillary Clinton office.”

Clinton, who is not in New Hampshire, is attending a National Democratic Committee meeting in Virginia. Presidential candidate Barack Obama also has an office in Rochester, and it has been evacuated. There were no reports of any injuries.

More later with an update or two.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Video: WGA. Who's On The Line

This really sums it up, at least for me. With lines like "You can't handle the truth" - "Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy night" - "Play it again Sam" - it is the writers who make us care, laugh, and cry. That's why so many actors are on the lines, too. Watch this and decide for yourself.



More later.
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Monday, November 26, 2007

Medical Coverage for Pets, but Not Domestic Partners

This reminds me of the church. Blessing animals, fishing boats, even buses is OK, but not for GLBT couples. I mean, these people pay for the coverage out of their own pockets, so what't the problem? Guess.

The pets of Palm Beach Community College employees will qualify for discounted group medical insurance beginning in January, but domestic partners are still barred from receiving similar benefits.

School officials sent a memo last week explaining the new voluntary pet benefit available via payroll deduction through the private company Veterinary Pet Insurance.

Full-time college employees can receive a 5 percent discount on services because of the college’s enrollment in the program, which covers dogs and cats, but also hedgehogs, frogs, guinea pigs, geckos, iguanas and sugar gliders - small flying mammals native to Australia.

In August, PBCC trustees voted down a proposal to allow the domestic partners of full-time employees to receive insurance benefits. The plan wouldn’t have cost the school anything because it pays employee premiums only, not those of dependents.

The college buys insurance through a state consortium, which allows each school to decide whether to offer domestic partner benefits.

Rand Hoch, president of the Palm Beach County Human Rights Council, said it is wrong for the college to put the medical needs of pets above those of the human loved ones of employees.


Read it all.

More later.
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Sunday, November 25, 2007

Taxpayers Pay for FL. Rep. Bob Allen's Blowjob

This is unbelievable. Taxpayers will have to foot the bill for obese GOP Family Values closet case hypocrite who got busted and convicted for soliciting sex from a cop. No, not Larry Craig, the other one (of many). The Orlando Sentinal:

It could cost taxpayers more than $400,000 to elect a replacement to serve the remainder of Rep. Bob Allen's term in the Florida House.

But state Republican leaders and colleagues, who pressured the disgraced seven-year lawmaker to resign, and potential candidates hoping to replace him said Monday that it will be money well-spent.

"It's certainly unfortunate that the cost is what it is," said Erin VanSickle, a spokeswoman for state GOP Chairman Jim Greer. "But the voters in that district deserve a voice in the House of Representatives and shouldn't have to wait."

Allen, whose term expires next fall, resigned effective Feb. 15 after he was sentenced to probation Thursday for soliciting sex in the men's room of a Titusville park.

Read the whole thing.

More later.

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Friday, November 23, 2007

Gay Bashings Are Up

It figures:

Hate crimes against gays made up 16 percent of total documented hate crimes across the U.S. in 2006, up from 14 percent in 2005, the FBI reported Monday.

The rate of all bias-motivated crimes increased 8 percent in 2006. Hate crimes based on sexual orientation are the third most common type behind those based on race and religion, according to the annual report.

In May the House of Representatives passed the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act -- known as the Matthew Shepard Act -- in a bipartisan vote, and the Senate approved it as well. If enacted, the proposed law would give the federal government expanded jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute violent crimes based on a person's race, color, religion, or national origin as well as their sexual orientation, gender identity, gender, and disability. It also provides assistance to local law enforcement to investigate and prosecute bias-motivated violence, according to a Human Rights Campaign press release. Existing federal hate-crimes law covers only those based on a victim's race, color, religion, and national origin.

"This FBI report confirms what the Human Rights Campaign has known for over a decade -- that hate-crimes protections for the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community are long overdue," HRC president Joe Solmonese said in a statement. "We urge Congress to send this legislation immediately to the president's desk, and for the president to sign it into law." (The Advocate)

I have nothing. I survived another 12 hour Black Friday. Time for Dinner and a cocktail (not necessarily in that order.

More later.
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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Boycott Wal-Mart

HRC says so:

The Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay rights group, is giving Wal-Mart a red "do not buy" rating in its new consumer guide, bestowing a lump of coal on the retail giant just in time for the holiday shopping season.

Citing Wal-Mart's refusal to offer domestic partner benefits to its gay and lesbian workers, the HRC said Tuesday that the USA's biggest private employer has "more work to do in furthering equality." It advised gays and their supporters to shop elsewhere.

Wal-Mart rated a red 40 on a scale of 100, down from a yellow 65 in 2006. It was among 54 companies that scored 45 or lower in HRC's 2008 Corporate Equality index, which assigns ratings to 519 large companies. Also in the red: Toys R Us, Radio Shack and AutoZone.

Wal-Mart rival Target rated a "green" 80, meaning that "consumers should make every effort to support these businesses." Wal-Mart has bucked a corporate trend of expanding benefits for gay employees, says Daryl Herrschaft, director of HRC's workplace project. He says two Fortune 500 companies offered domestic partner benefits, comparable to spouse benefits, in 1990. Today, 269 do
.

Not a problem for me. I hate Wal-Mart.

If you want a guide for where to shop and not shop this season, go to HRC Buying Guide
No matter what you're looking for, this guide will give you their "friendly" or "unfriendly" rating.

More later.

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Remember 1963?

Do you remember where you were on 11/22/63? I do.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy (May 29, 1917November 22, 1963), was the thirty-fifth President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963.

After Kennedy's leadership as commander of the USS PT-109 during World War II in the South Pacific, his aspirations turned political. Kennedy represented the state of Massachusetts in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1947 to 1953 as a Democrat, and in the U.S. Senate from 1953 until 1961. Kennedy defeated former Vice President and Republican candidate Richard Nixon in the 1960 U.S. presidential election, one of the closest in American history.

I know we celebrate Thanksgiving today, but, as the calendar reminds us, this year it is also the anniversary of the assassination of John Kennedy.

I loved JFK. and at the time of the assassination was in Mexico. Borders were closed and all flights to the US were grounded until Oswald was arrested. A mass exodus was inevitable when the no-fly ban was lifted. I was able to get on an Eastern flight back to NYC 12 hours after airlines resumed service to the US. There were no flights into the D.C. area. So, when I arrived in NYC, I hurried over to Penn Station and hopped a train to the Capital in time for the funeral procession. It was hard to believe that he was dead.

Like everyone else surrounding me, I cried like a baby. Well, I was seventeen years old at the time.

More later.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

"Conservapedia" = Gay Obsessions

Obsessive, indeed. This seems to be their 'thing' and may be the root of all the closet cases in the GOP. Maybe if they could just accept who they are they wouldn't be busted so often. Hypocrites like Mark Foley, Bob Allen, and Larry Craig wouldn't be such big, embarrassing news stories and they wouldn't have to cruise for sex in public toilets.

There are 15,480 registered users, of which 27 (or 0.17%) are Administrators.

Most viewed pages

  1. Main Page‎ [1,902,816]
  2. Homosexuality‎ [1,542,855]
  3. Homosexuality and Hepatitis‎ [516,744]
  4. Homosexuality and Promiscuity‎ [420,171]
  5. Homosexuality and Parasites‎ [387,876]
  6. Homosexuality and Domestic Violence‎ [351,525]
  7. Gay Bowel Syndrome‎ [343,240]
  8. Homosexuality and Gonorrhea‎ [331,089]
  9. Homosexuality and Mental Health‎ [277,089]
  10. Homosexuality and Syphilis‎ [265,041]
click on any link to view the page. It is truly bizarre.

More later.
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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

VoteVets Launches Blog With Guest Blogs by Prez. Candidates

Via AMERICAblog:

From VoteVets.org:
PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES ADDRESS MILITARY, VETERANS’ ISSUES FOR LAUNCH OF VETVOICE.COM

New blog sponsored by VoteVets.org will be hub on the web for those troops, veterans, military families, and their civilian supporters concerned with Bush policies

WASHINGTON – A new blog, VetVoice.com, is launching with a bang today, with hourly posts from the presidential candidates, addressing what they would do on military and veterans’ issues as President of the United States. VetVoice.com, a project of the largest political group of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans, VoteVets.org, is the new home on the web for troops, veterans, military families, and civilian supporters concerned with the current course the United States is on.

“It’s heartening to know that the candidates who are posting think military and veterans issues are important enough to warrant a post on this new blog,” said Brandon Friedman, Iraq and Afghanistan Veteran, and Vice Chairman of VoteVets.org. “VetVoice.com, we hope will become the hub on the web for those concerned about military and veterans’ issues, and where people can take a critical look at these issues, and proposed solutions. There’s no better way to kick it off than to begin with posts from those who are seeking to be our Commander in Chief.”

Every Democratic and Republican presidential candidate was invited to post. The schedule for their posts was determined by what order candidates replied to the invite. That schedule for posts is:

9:30am EST – Senator John Edwards
10:30 – Representative Ron Paul
11:30 – Governor Bill Richardson
12:30 – Senator Chris Dodd
1:30 – Senator Hillary Clinton
2:30 – Senator Barack Obama
3:30 – Senator Joe Biden

VetVoice.com won’t just be one-way communication, though. When users create an account, they will be given the ability to create a diary and write their own posts, and comment and converse in other posts. In this way, VetVoice.com will bring together troops, veterans, military families, and civilian supporters for the largest online dialogue about the challenges the United States faces in military and veterans’ policies, and how we might solve them.

VoteVets.org is a pro-military organization committed to the destruction of terror networks around the world, with force when necessary. It represents the Voice of America's 21 Century Patriots - those who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan. It primarily focuses on nonpartisan education and advocacy on behalf of troops, veterans and their families.
Should be interesting to read what the candidates write about Iraq, or if they will actually write the blogs or have a staffer do it for them from one of their canned response letters. I've received more than a few of those things.

Update: The only response blogs were posted by Dems, although ALL candidates were invited to participate. Curious, don't you think?

More later.

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Monday, November 19, 2007

NOLA: Plus or Minus?

This is just nuts. NOLA is not protected for another 4 or 5 feet, but the reverse. Talk about a whole bunch of stupid…

Harry Shearer:

Another landmark in the history of New Orleans' relationship with the US Army Corps of Engineers was reached today, according to Mark Schleifstein in the Times-Picayune. The new gates and levee repairs by the Corps, which the agency announced with great fanfare had given between 4 and 5 feet of additional flood protection to the Lakeview and Old Metairie neighborhoods, both inundated when the floodwalls breached after Katrina, are, it now appears, giving almost no additional protection. The problem: a minus sign that should have been a plus sign. And still the Congress refuses to mandate independent peer review for the Corps' work in engineering and building structures upon which millions of people depend for their safety.

From the TP piece:

In June, the Army Corps of Engineers proudly announced that new gates and levee repairs meant residents returning to Lakeview and Old Metairie would see floodwaters reduced by up to 5 1/2 feet if the city were hit by a 100-year hurricane.

They were off by 5 feet.

The reason? The Lakeview data got fouled up when somebody put a minus sign in a calculation that called for a plus sign, Ed Link, leader of the corps-sponsored Interagency Performance Evaluation Task Force, said Friday. The Old Metairie errors stemmed from faulty assumptions about the way water would move into and out of the neighborhood from surrounding areas, Link said.

In other words, flood protection in Lakeview and Old Metairie has hardly improved at all since the neighborhoods drowned in the 2005 flood -- despite the public celebrations of corps officials and others in releasing the maps on Hurricane Katrina's second anniversary.

Click on the TP link above or go this way.

More Later.

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Thursday, November 15, 2007

It's Been a While

As they say “Time flies like an arrow – fruit flies like a banana." Or some such…

Nothing of note has spurred me to write lately...

I mean, aside from a rear end collision to the auto next to me at a stop light. (I had been behind that car and moved to the next lane because I was making a turn soon. Thank you Jesus!) Finally capturing a feral female cat we've been feeding and caring for at the store for the past 6 years - even finding homes for all her litters over that time. We wouldn't have caught her, but she'd been injured, probably by a car and was dragging her back legs, so we drugged her and took her to the vet. She's going to be fine. All tests are negative. Turns out nothing was broken, just a dislocated hip. Painful, but it was snapped back into place and she'll be OK. She's had the queen for a day treatment; all shots, spayed, nails clipped, ear mite treatment, flea treatment, and will be sprung from the vet's on the weekend. I'm told that she hasn't tried to bite or scratch, but hisses whenever anyone comes to close to her space. Heh! Now the real fun begins. Finding her a home. I wish I could take her, but no pets allowed where I am. That's probably best.

Other than that My life consists of work, eat, sleep, - lather, rinse and repeat.

The therapy session on Monday was another good one. More insights and again I was strongly urged to get out more. Easier said than done, I’m afraid. But I will try my best and I was invited out to dinner that evening.

I checked off all errands on my list just in time and headed for the meeting place.

Communication had lapsed for a few months - it was a rather long dinner. We caught up on our individual lives (they have been enjoying much travel and are about to go on a cruise) and I listened as they reviewed the films they saw at the recent Film Festival. Wish I could have attended, all the films sounded terrific.

All in all it was a great time. Not only were we enjoying a meal together, but other folks we know arrived and we had a lovely time playing catch-up on all our lives. It was one of those warm and fuzzy evenings that are few and far between, if you get my drift.

Seems everyone I know has recently been, or about to go on a cruise or going on a holiday to some exotic place. Sigh.

I am still holding out hope for that Alaska cruise/tour of my dreams. I’ve been receiving tips from customers and friends in the travel business; today one brought an ‘Essential Alaska Packing List’ that seems pretty comprehensive and smart.

With winter setting in and a storm tonight, I will have plenty of time to peruse the list and get in some other reading as well.

More later.

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Sunday, November 11, 2007

Readability Test.

cash advance

Well, that's about right for my communication needs. Make it readable for anyone and don't dumb it down.

More later.

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Friday, November 9, 2007

Fallout, and More...

More fallout from last month’s computer death: A few of the programs I use most often are not compatible with VISTA. Surprise! Also, all of my digital photos were lost. I had a backup CD of most of them made back in April, but I can’t find it anywhere and suspect it was lost in the move(s) or left at the house.

And…more fallout from the last move.: All my winter coats were left behind at the previous rented space, probably in the hall closet. Well, it was the middle of July after all, and during a heat wave. I was under a hell of a lot of stress and wanted nothing more than to get out of that toxic situation. So, I’m without my dress overcoat and a new leather jacket bought just last winter. Oh, well…I’ll live. And live without.

And before you ask, NO, I haven’t received the promised refund of half-month’s rent. It’s been 4 months since I moved out so I doubt I’ll ever see it. Nobody said life was fair. Some days are good ones and others are less so. Today is one of the latter. Please keep me in prayer.

I’m working the weekend, but I hope to make it to church Sunday because I don’t have to go in until 1 pm.

I am going to prepare supper and have a cocktail (not necessarily in that order) and settle in to watch BBC news. I can't tolerate high decibel level emanating from the mouths of the pundits and news critters on CNN. I get Faux Noise tidbits from Crooks & Liars. And that's about all I can take. The war on Christmas has already begun. Ratings must be in the tank.

As an aside, a brown fox spent part of his morning outside my window. Playing, rolling in the grass and just chilling. He stayed for almost an hour. He was mesmerizing - and beautiful.

More later.

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Tuesday, November 6, 2007

More Red Tape in Rebuilding Louisiana

OK, Like this is suppose to be news? Yet, most everyone I talk to seem to think that everything has been rebuilt and all is well in LA. Hardly. Well, in today's NYT, there's this:

NEW ORLEANS — If rebuilding anything in this storm-scarred place could possibly qualify as simple, surely it would be the administration building in City Park.

The two-story structure, built in 1992, does not have any of the features that can complicate restoring public buildings. No special historic, environmental, cultural or political significance. No history of poor maintenance or other damage (aside from the five feet of water that filled it after the levees failed). No need to be merged, moved or reimagined in response to changes after Hurricane Katrina.

Yet after almost two years of federal inspections and studies and reviews filling more than 90 pages, the administration building has been neither repaired nor replaced. And there are dozens of similarly incomplete projects at the park, hundreds in the city, thousands across the state of Louisiana.

In fact, the federal government has agreed to pay $2.3 billion so far for rebuilding Louisiana public works like schools, sewers and police stations. But so far, only $650 million — 28 percent — of that money has been spent. In Mississippi, only 27 percent has been spent of the $1.1 billion of federal tax dollars set aside to replace government infrastructure there.

There are many reasons for the slow pace of rebuilding, including antagonism between state and federal officials, and the difficulty some local leaders have had deciding exactly what to rebuild and where and how. New Orleans, in particular, released a detailed rebuilding plan only in October, and City Hall often appears understaffed and overwhelmed.

Read the whole tale here.

Michael Chertoff should be in jail.

More later.
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More

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Mission(s) Accomplished

A good day, indeed, though not weather wise. Cold, windy, and cloudy, so a good day to get tasks accomplished that’d been put off for various reasons for almost a month.

Enjoyed a lovely (and rare) breakfast while watching news from the BBC.

Installed new personal finance software (all data on the old PC was lost, so I had to start fresh) and transferred data from checkbook and bank statements. I decided not to go with the new version Quicken because all reviews I read were negative. So I went hunting and found a very simple and accurate little program. It fulfills my humble needs. I’m pleased.

Updated (as much as possible) the address book in the new email program. It’s a bit clunky, but not bad. What do you expect it’s from Microsoft! It’s just a matter of getting used to the newness of it all. As usual, MS overloaded the program with crap that most users will never use, or need.

Created a few webpages for a non-profit that was a new experience and a challenge for me. It took more time than it ought to have, mainly (again!) due to Microsoft doing it’s “we’re doing it for you, because you’re too stupid and we know what you REALLY want to do, anyway” thing. Jeez!

I paid my daily visit to MadPriest for my dose of his kinky, but centered humor. I wasn’t disappointed. Oh, go and visit his site. He says, “If you think you don’t belong, you belong here.” What more needs to be said?

Took time to search for more Alaska cruise information. Not that I will be in any position to actually make that particular dream a reality next year. But, I can dream, can’t I? Don’t answer that.

Now, I’m doing bulk cooking – a winter stew – that is filling the place with such a wonderful aroma that I feel like embracing the season ahead. Well, not really, but I do love comfort foods.

I hope to watch Torchwood tonight on BBC. I have no idea what I’m in for, but it’s been recommended and I have to do my duty and watch at least once.

Accomplishments. It’s the little things that make me feel good. Living alone isn’t that bad.

More later.

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Friday, November 2, 2007

Suit is More Than Money

Well, Fred Phelps (the Kansas bigot who never seems to be in Kansas) and his "church" finally got slammed in a 10 million dollar damage award. But, the marine's father says it ain't about the money. From the NYT:

BALTIMORE, Nov. 1 —After a year and a half of anger, grief and legal maneuvering, the father of a marine killed in Iraq has said the success of his suit against a fundamentalist sect that picketed his son’s funeral means more than the jury’s $10.9 million damage award on Tuesday.

“If I can take whatever they have and stop them, good,” said the father, Albert Snyder, 52, a salesman from York, Pa., whose son, Lance Cpl. Matthew A. Snyder, 20, was killed two months after arriving in Iraq in January 2006. “I was not motivated by money. I want to shut this church down, if you can call it a church. I call it a cult or a hate group. I sat in that courtroom for a week and a half and never once heard them say a good thing about God.”

He added that he doubted he would ever collect the award.

Mr. Snyder said he had decided to sue the leaders of the sect, the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kan., for invasion of privacy and inflicting emotional distress two months after its members demonstrated at his son’s funeral in March 2006 in Westminster, Md.

Read the whole thing.

But, I have a question; Just where did Phelps' "church" get that Million bucks in the first place? There is a lot more hate out there than we can imagine.

More later.

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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Homophobic Republican Outed.

Yes, again. No, really.

This is getting to be hilarious. All these self-hating homophobes getting caught having sex with men and repeating the mantra "I am not gay" until it hurts. They vote against equal rights for the LGBT community and then go out and have a good time at our expense. The latest has everything; blackmail, extortion, cross-dressing, and porn. There is kink in this, too. Jebus, and they tell me I'm Queer!

Why don't we just ask all Republicans to raise their hands if they're NOT gay. Nah, that wouldn't work

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- A Republican state legislator who repeatedly voted against gay rights measures resigned his seat Wednesday amid revelations he had sex with a man he met at an erotic video store while in Spokane on a GOP retreat.

In a written statement, Rep. Richard Curtis, of La Center, said that while he believes he's done a lot of good during his time in the Legislature, "events that have recently come to light have hurt a lot of people."

"I sincerely apologize for any pain my actions may have caused," he wrote. "This has been damaging to my family, and I don't want to subject them to any additional pain that might result from carrying out this matter under the scrutiny that comes with holding public office."

Three days earlier, Curtis had insisted to his local newspaper that he was not gay and that sex was not involved in what he said was an extortion attempt by a man last week.

But in police reports, Curtis said he was being extorted by a man he had sex with in a Spokane hotel room. The other man contends Curtis reneged on a promise to pay $1,000 for sex.


Check out the updated version here. What goes around, comes around. Hopefully my appetite will return later this evening.

More later.
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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Thinkin' 'Bout a Sea Cruise.

Wooo-eee, woo-eee, baby, and like that. OK, so maybe you’re not old enough to remember Frankie Ford…well, (ahem) neither am I. OK I lie. Not only do I remember him, I knew him since we share the same hometown. If you click on Frankie's link, be forewarned that it's more than over the top, with lots of animated and exploding graphics, but fun in a NOLA-kitchy kind of way.

Spent most of the afternoon searching for cruise dates, cabin options and prices, and cruise line ratings all of which has been educational, yes, at least that. I am not into the all 'gay cruise' thing (more expensive and not sure I would enjoy that experience). I've found a few companies that put together gay & lesbian groups for regularly scheduled cruises. The groups consist of 20 to 50 people and one doesn't have to be a 'friend of Dorothy' to be included. So, if you're gay and your travel companion is straight, no problem. Assuming, of course, said companion knows you're gay.

You see there are two places that I want to see before I leave this “earthly plane” and they both begin with “A” – Australia and Alaska. Doing the math I’ve discovered that the former is not feasible any time soon, but Alaska has some very tempting options.

I found a few 7-day round-trip out of Seattle that looks very good and they’re not on mega-ships of 3,000+, but smaller vessels carrying about 1200+. Much more to my liking. Thankfully, some have no formal night and that’s another plus. I just don’t get tuxedos with tundra, do you? I’m thinking more in terms of the Python song “I’m Lumberjack” if you get my drift.

Oh, and thank G*d Baked Alaska is off the dessert menu. I mean, isn’t Global Warming doing that already? That's another reason I feel this trip is urgent...I want to see the glaciers before they're gone. Hell, and before I'M gone!

I’ll be talking with a travel agent in the near future to find out more and see what good deals are available.

Um, question: every website I visited warned to never, NEVER pay full price for a cruise. What I want to know is; why are the inflated prices listed online in the first place? I'm just sayin'.

The next mission is to find a travel companion with an interest to see Alaska and it’s a go. The cruise is seven days in September 2008. Drop a line, or leave a comment if interested. I’ll delete your email address before I post your comment. Promise.

More later.

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Monday, October 29, 2007

Halloween? It's Not For Me.

Maybe it’s because I am from NOLA (and well, how much more Halloween can one get?) with voodoo, black candles, and all that, but I’ve never really gotten into the spirit (so to say) of the holiday. Oh sure, as a kid I did the usual rounds of the neighborhood in costume reaping the rewards of candy, fruit and sometimes bags of local pecans. Yum.

But, when I saw the cover of this issue, I knew why I have never been too enthralled. It’s enough to make you, well, you know. The Lord of Darkness has never been so frightening.

There are hayrides, spooky trail tours happening, and where I live on the marshes, I could put together a wicked (sorry) late night, scary tour of my own. Sadly, I don’t own the place and because I am not that into Halloween, I will skip the ghoulish festivities.

More later.

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Sunday, October 28, 2007

Rain, Sun, and Sea Witch

The three days of rain ended last evening and today dawned bright and clear. Not a cloud in the sky.

The good news is that the Sea Witch Festival wasn’t a complete washout (sorry.) and downtown was bustling with seemingly hundreds of families and pets that were just dying to show off their costumes and have a good time. I had the opportunity to visit the boardwalk before going to work this morning. What fun.

The not-so-good news is even with all the rain the pond remains low and a few of the turtles are sunning themselves on a bit of mud that still sticks out above the waterline, which is about 18 inches low.

After work I came home and called to let my landlady know about a change in the weather since she had told me there were a few plants she wanted to bring indoors for the winter and they needed to be brought in before a real cold spell.

We’re expecting a frost tonight so I helped bring in to the porch a few potted hibiscuses that were around the pool area, and then we took a walk (my first) in the woods to the end of the property. Just breathtaking and the cool breeze rustling through the drying leaves smelled good.

It’s hunting season and while they’re prohibited from hunting God’s creatures on Sundays, hunters fill the other six days with the sounds of rifles, shotguns and the like. The noise was a little disconcerting at first, but I’ve gotten used to it. These folks have been hunting here for generations and it’s part of their way of life.

On our walk we saw a few duck blinds and small boats on land near the creek. Because it’s Sunday there were no hunters around. I wouldn’t take this walk on any other day until the end of the Hunting Season.

All in all, a good day, indeed.

More later.

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Friday, October 26, 2007

Stop The Nuclear Bailout - NukeFree.org

From NukeFree:

Do you live near a nuclear power plant? You may not today, but if the nuclear power industry has their way, a lot more of us could have those radioactive smokestacks as neighbors.

Please join musicians Jackson Browne, Graham Nash, Bonnie Raitt as well as a growing list of concerned citizens in signing a petition to Congress that will stop a pending bailout of the nuclear power industry.




So, go on over to NukeFree.org and sign the petition. Check out the right frame for a list of all who are taking part.

More later.
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Thursday, October 25, 2007

Press Releases: You can't make up.

Spew Alert!!!

From Heckuva Job-Brownie - the man who didn't know of anyone in the NOLA Convention center three days after Katrina, California now gets this:
Former FEMA Director and Director of Corporate Strategy for Cotton Companies Michael D. Brown Available for Interviews Regarding California Wild Fires

394 words , 23 October 2007 , 18:12 , PR Newswire (U.S.) English

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire Association LLC. All Rights Reserved.

NEW YORK, Oct. 23 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Michael D. Brown, Former FEMA Director and Current Director of Cotton Companies, one of the leading disaster preparedness and restoration organizations in the nation, is available for comment regarding the wild fires that are devastating Southern California.

Currently, the brush fires are affecting hundreds of local businesses and have forced more than 500,000 people out of their homes. Of these 500,000 people, an estimated 10,000 of them have taken shelter at the local NFL stadium, Qualcomm, vaguely reminiscent of circumstances of Hurricane Katrina evacuees two years ago.

"The agency has learned some hard lessons regarding the handling of mass evacuations especially in regard to the bureaucratic red tape that is involved in such a process," said Mr. Brown. "This is a tragic time for many of the people of California, and Cotton Companies is working to ensure that normalcy is restored and that businesses and organizations are back up and running as soon as possible."

Cotton has already deployed a team to San Diego to prepare recovery efforts and has a Community Assessment Team in full force.

Mr. Brown can speak to the turmoil being caused by the California wild fires as well as to some of the new processes in disaster relief efforts that will help to restore California communities. He can offer advice to residents and businesses on proper relief and recovery efforts and provide suggestions for future disaster preparedness.

Since its inception in 1996, Cotton Companies, the nation's leading provider of disaster recovery services, has been coming to the aid of businesses and communities coast to coast with its ability to react, take charge, mobilize and execute on the spot crisis management. Cotton has responded to such high-alert disasters as Hurricane Katrina and the tragedy of 9/11 in New York City.

Like I said, you just can't make this stuff up.

More later.

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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

We are: "The Battered"

This is from the "Daily Delaware" site and written by Delaware Dem. Check out the entire piece.
We are all battered. We are under constant attack from the right and their maleovent spokesmen on the airways, in Congress and in the White House. And as we take the assaults on our liberty, on our persons, on our freedoms and on our fundamental sense of dignity, we turn to our elected representatives in Congress with the expectation that they will have our collective backs. We expect that they will be ready to fight back. We expect that they will possess the very same righteous indignation that we do.

And they are generally no where to be found.

Excuse me, I am wrong. They can be found.

Hiding in the ally. Under the table. Behind the curtain. Afraid of the bully.

Speaker Pelosi. Over 80% of Daily Kos (some 12,000 Kossacks) disapprove of your job performance. It is because you do not have our backs.

Majority Leader Reid. I hear you used to be a prize fighter. I think that is a lie. For you do not fight for us. And that is why you are roundly disapproved of in the netroots and around the nation.

This really made my day.
More later.
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Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Every Day that Comes, Comes Once in a Lifetime.

I really needed to look for more stove top cooked recipes. I was getting bored, already. So I did some searching and came up with a few that read as delicious. Now all I have to do is find the proper pan for this project to be complete. My storage space is very limited. So, I went hunting this morning and didn’t find anything appropriate around here.

Meanwhile, as I was driving into town, an old song from an obscure Broadway show from the 60s popped into my head and took up residence. I was amazed that I still recalled the lyrics as I began to sing out-loud – windows down – warm breezes swirling through the car. I have not heard that song, or anything else from the score in about 20 years.

The show: Subways Are For Sleeping. (I said it was obscure, didn’t I?)

Songs: Betty Comden, Adolf Green, and Jule Styne.

Anyway, the song intruding into my morning consciousness is titled “Once in a Lifetime.” As the day is now ending I feel that I must put these lyrics down, so I don’t forget them again (there is a tie-in to my session with the therapist, but that’s below) so here are some:

Every day, just goes along dawn to sundown,
Here’s the rundown,
Every day that comes, comes once in a lifetime.

Take each day, and that the moments in it.
Fill each minute,
Every day that comes, comes once in a lifetime.

Think of now, tomorrow is waiting in the wings,
Who knows what it brings,
While the future waits, the present swings.

So take each day and gather the romance in it.
Fill each minute
Every day that comes, comes once in a lifetime

Only once come this particular sky,
Only once these precious hours will fly
Only once this incredible day goes by,
So live, live, live….
Today.

At least that’s what I can remember. So…I'm having a session with the therapist and this song becomes the background theme of my life today. No, really. It did!

As we talked (I talked – he shared) I discovered that I had been diligently working on old programs trying to rid myself of their presence and toxicity and that I was essentially singing this song because I have begun to live in the present; the NOW! No wonder I’ve been so exhausted lately – it wasn’t just from work, it was all the internal stuff, too.

I left the session hovering a few inches off the ground.

It’s October 23 and the temps are in the upper 70s with a delightful breeze coming in off the ocean. Everyone is in shorts and tee shirts. I took a walk on the boardwalk, ran into a few folks from my previous life that seemed a bit shocked by my relaxed and open countenance. They didn’t say much, and I didn’t offer much. They seemed distracted. At least they said “hello”!

I came home, sat by the (now closed-for-the-winter pool) and read for a time while listening to the wind rustle through the changing leaves. I am now ready for a shower and getting dinner started. And I still need to find that damned pan sometime soon.

More later.

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