Twilight High.

Seventeen degrees as I write this. It seems it’s been 17 degrees forever, except for earlier this week when it was 38 degrees and raining. Did I mention I bought some cool-weather cycling gear, and tried it out when it was briefly not 17 degrees? I discovered my personal threshold of misery was 40 degrees — anything above, and I could handle it. It hasn’t been that warm since Halloween.

Because I know that my readers come here for a weather report, that’s why.

You know the worst part of being chronically sleep-deprived? The constant failure. You make a to-do list of, say, five items, and you’re lucky if one gets done. You just don’t have the energy. Today, for instance, mine has three: Take dog to groomer, work out, write three script pages. Just watch me fail to do at least one, and maybe two. The first only requires me to stumble to the corner, but who knows? It’s 17 degrees outside! I may not make it. Besides, there’s all sorts of stuff to read on the internet today, like hot details on the “Twilight” sequel. I did my parental duty on that score last weekend, and took Kate to an afternoon matinee that still cost $9.50 for an adult ticket. It was…well, it was competent, assuming the director’s intent was to produce 100 minutes of teen entertainment that looked great and contained many smoldering glances.

When I go to these things, I think of my friend Adrianne, aka Lance Mannion’s Blonde, whose father dutifully took his children to every “Planet of the Apes” movie when they were growing up. He would buy everyone some popcorn, escort them to a row, take up the end seat and promptly fall asleep. In the great tradition of children everywhere, Adrianne and her siblings had no idea how agonizing these films were to their father, until years later he let loose with his mockery of the final installment. “Ape has killed ape!” he intoned, capturing the moment when the arc finally came back down to earth, when the apes realized they had become the humans they’d spent all that screen time conquering. (This would be “Battle for the,” etc. title in the series, for you cineastes.) In the tradition of Adrianne’s father, I kept my snide remarks to one, whispered in Kate’s ear in the early moments of the film, “Whoever has the teeth-whitening contract for this high school is doing a great job.” The rest of my petty observations — if she’s so in love, why does Bella always look constipated? why do the vampire teens go to high school if they don’t have to? why doesn’t the same school change its name to Diversity High and get it over with? wait, her mother has a 17-year-old daughter and she’s married to a minor-league baseball player? let’s see more of this cougar! — I kept to myself. This movie wasn’t made for me, it was made for Kate’s demographic, and she liked it well enough, although even she said, aftereward, “Bella doesn’t smile very much.” That’s my girl.

If Alan had come along, I might have slipped out and gone down the hall to see “Milk.” A friend of mine used to do that — get his kids settled, then say, “Daddy’s going to see ‘First Blood’ now. You wait for me outside when the movie’s over.” A simpler time.

So, we have a few odds and ends to get out of the way, then? We do:

My local papers get on my nerves plenty, but at least they have a few good writers. It’s hard not to read the rest of a story that starts like this…

On third thought, Wayne County Probate Judge David Szymanski has concluded maybe it wasn’t a great idea to jail a woman for writing about her court case on a Web site.

…and continues with this…

Szymanski jailed Anderson, 59, twice Monday after she refused to shutter the site, which she has used as a pulpit in her tangled battle with her brother over the care of their elderly mother. The battle has extended to the mother’s ailing, 17-year-old cat, Toupee (who has his own, first-person column on the Web site).

Judges hate gadflies. Not to mention cats with columns, evidently.

It’s that time of year again: “A Christmas Story” cast, 25 years later. Ralphie in particular has aged well, and Scut Farkas continues to terrify. Thanks, Dexter.

Finally, in the last, desperate days of my time at The News-and-Sentinel, the staff was showed some market research that said, basically, that our readers were dumbasses who thought local television — yes, those even dumber dumbasses — did more in-depth and follow-up reporting. This is preposterous on its face, and it’s probably good that I wasn’t doing the questioning, as I might have been tempted to ask the respondents a further question: “On a scale of 1 to 10, just how stupid would you say you are?” The only reason we could see for this is that TV marketing people said so, constantly: Now with more in-depth reporting to serve YOU, etc. This led to us adopting a bunch of standing column sigs that read FOLLOW-UP ON THE NEWS and IN-DEPTH REPORTING. I only wish I were kidding. But since this next item involves my N-S ex-colleague Dorsey Price, let’s dust off the sigs and call this…


You remember Dorsey’s son Derek, who made the incredibly cornball video, in pursuit of a pile of college cash? And who asked us to vote for him, because the cash went to the video that got the most popular support? He won! We can’t say what the NN.C bump may have had to do with it, but $20,000 is $20,000, so who cares? The money, by the way, came from iCorn. Which is? Ahem: At iCORN we’ve created a new way to select and purchase seed corn and soybean seed….your way and on your schedule. iCORN is now starting their 9th year of business providing high-yield potential corn and soybean genetics with the latest traits.

Now you know.

Time to leash the dog and check one item off the list. Have a good one.

Posted at 9:31 am in Current events, Movies, Same ol' same ol' |

61 responses to “Twilight High.”

  1. mark said on December 11, 2008 at 9:41 am

    I’m very happy for Derick Price and his family. Don’t underestimate the importance of your supporting role. Kudos to you for lending a helping hand. It’s nice when things work out well.

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  2. derwood said on December 11, 2008 at 10:13 am

    That’s awesome that he won. I think NN.c should take some credit…I would never have voted if I hadn’t read it here.

    I must be un-american or something but I hate A Christmas Story. I can’t even explain why. It’s just one of those movies that grates on my nerves when I run across it.


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  3. del said on December 11, 2008 at 10:13 am

    “Ape has killed Ape!” he intoned. Beautiful.

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  4. Jen said on December 11, 2008 at 10:25 am

    There must have been a major constipation problem in the land of “Twilight,” because Edward the ‘Hot’ Vampire also looked constipated throughout the whole movie.

    I went opening night (crazy, I know) to review the movie. I dragged along a friend (my husband refused to come along) who is a high school English teacher and wanted to know what the hell all his female students were swooning over.

    I’ve read the books, too, and they’re an OK light read, but there is NO substance. I would have LOVED them when I was about 12 or 13.

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  5. LA Mary said on December 11, 2008 at 10:57 am

    $20,000 towards college is a great help. I’m glad we helped. I made everyone in my office vote, and since three of us are in the same kid stage as your friend, there was a lot of empathy.

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  6. Dorothy said on December 11, 2008 at 11:02 am

    I’m so very glad he won! I voted a bunch of times. Anything for a good cause I always say.

    We see red headed boys around sometimes that remind us of Skut Farkas. He is indeed a still-scary looking guy.

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  7. LA Mary said on December 11, 2008 at 11:03 am

    Something to enjoy:

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  8. LA Mary said on December 11, 2008 at 11:04 am

    And another good video:

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  9. coozledad said on December 11, 2008 at 11:05 am

    I’m having trouble getting around to various tasks too. Lots of coffee helps. I think it’s because I’ve been digging holes for fenceposts, and planting trees, but periodically I get this shooting pain across the top of my head that ends up in my eye, before exploding with a small phosphorescent flash.
    It could be because we took one of the mules out (Jane) for a walk yesterday to show her around the place and increase her comfort level. She never quite got out of control, but her stride definitely eclipses mine. We walked down though the woods to the pond, and then back up a steep hill towards the house. The towards the house part was harder. She walked that stretch about twice as fast, and I was having to squeeze the two of us between clusters of saplings as we jogged.
    Actually I have shooting pains everywhere.

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  10. Julie Robinson said on December 11, 2008 at 12:02 pm

    Since $20K was our daughter’s debt load upon graduation, it’s a thrill to know Derek will have that much covered. Which is, these days, about a year of state college if you live on campus. Glad we-all could help, you should feel good about letting us know, Nancy.

    Also, have you ever considered a therapy light? You may have more than just sleep deprivation going on.

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  11. MarkH said on December 11, 2008 at 12:24 pm

    Reminds me of the John Travolta character in “Phenomenon”, Cooz; better have that checked out. But I hear you (and Nancy) on getting around to different tasks; I think my own sleep deprivation plays into it as well. And the lists my wife constantly puts in front of me.

    But, hey (lefovers from Tuesday birthday talk), today is my birthday (57, if you must know, thanks) and I share it with a pretty eclectic list:

    Carlo Ponti; Thomas McGuane; Rita Moreno; Alexander Solzhenitsyn; Sen. John Kerry; Sen. Max Baucus (D-Montana); Tom Hayden; Grace Paley, and, last but certainly not least, Teri Garr, whom I have been in love with FOREVER.

    More? OK, the B-list – Jean Louis Trintignant, Donna Mills, Davis Gates, Jermaine Jackson, Brenda Lee, Christina Onassis, Susan Seidelman, Ken Wahl, Bess Armstrong, Niki Sixx, and…AND….Pope Leo X, born 1475.

    Thanks for listening; I’m enjoying my week off.

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  12. Catherine said on December 11, 2008 at 12:31 pm

    The $20K for college is spectacular news. I think that kid has a future making ironic web ads.

    Derwood, you are my people! I hate, hate, hate that movie, too.

    My 11 YO in the space of 2 weeks has turned into a Twilight fanatic. She’s already on the third one, which I had to confiscate last night because she wasn’t getting her stuff done (Junie B says that confiscate is the school word for “snatched it right out of my hands!”). I’m trying to catch up on Twilight. My big issue so far: I can suspend a lot of disbelief, but as Nancy says, why in God’s name do the vampire teens go to high school if they don’t have to?

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  13. Dave K. said on December 11, 2008 at 12:31 pm

    Nancy, “The News-and-Sentinel” made me laugh. I have corrected my own pronunciation on this one, (as well as “wash”, not “warsh the dishes”). I remember being a freshman at Hillsdale, and classmates from Michigan commenting on my accent! They weren’t “yoopers” either, mostly Detroit metro guys.

    Way to go, Derek. Way to go, nn.c!

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  14. Dorothy said on December 11, 2008 at 12:32 pm

    Happy Birthday Mark H!! Wonder if Mr. Wahl is celebrating without benefit of anything illegal these days?

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  15. Jolene said on December 11, 2008 at 12:40 pm

    Cooooooool. Wonderful that Derek won. It’s great to have been able to help.

    PBS has been running some stories about college costs this week, and, although they’re not really telling me any thing I don’t know, it was sobering to hear kids talk about graduating w/ up to 100k in debt. That’s a huge burden to take into life as a grown-up.

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  16. LA Mary said on December 11, 2008 at 12:52 pm

    I hope Jean Shepherd made some money from Christmas Story before he died. I remember all the story lines in Christmas Story from monologues he did on WOR in the sixties.

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  17. Adrianne said on December 11, 2008 at 12:56 pm

    Nance, you did a great job containing your snark over “Twilight.” My dad, the Ape man, would be proud!

    He also reserved lots of movie nap time for those (mainly) awful live-action Disney movies that infested the nation’s theaters in the late ’60s and early 70s.

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  18. MarkH said on December 11, 2008 at 1:12 pm

    I would think he did more than OK, Mary. By the time “A Christmas Story” was made, making sure royalties were clearly worked out had to have been the norm in Hollywood, right? I mean, given how entertainment lawyers work and all.

    I first discoverd him in college when he did a regular column for Car & Driver magazine starting in 1971. That turned me onto his other works including “Jean Shepherd’s America” on PBS which I still treasure and wish I could find on dvd. A national treasure, he was (is). I envy you having listened to him live on NY radio.

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  19. beb said on December 11, 2008 at 1:31 pm

    My wife also mocks me for “warshing” the dishes. Well, I’ve “warshed” dished for twenty years already in this married and expect to go on “warshing” for another twenty! We’ve also gone to Warshington, DC twice and I never heard George Warshington complain!

    Our 16 yo also has become a recent convert to Twilight. I’m just happy she’s read a book! She finished the book in two days and was about to re-read it when someone at school stole it. I didn’t realize anyone else in her school could read. (OK, that’s not fair. What they can’t do is sit in class and not snap their chewing gum. It drives my daughter berzerk.)

    My wife went out to buy a relacement copy and could only find the trade paperback edition, costing $5 more than the regular paperback. Couldn’t find the next in the series.

    Then last friday I was in a bookstore and in the space of a half hour three mothers came in with their daughters looking for the sequel, and none with to had. I think that means the author has officially gone platinum.

    Speaking of books, I see where the author of the Harry Potter Lexicon has revised his manuscript according to the judge’s guidelines for what constitutes copyright infringement and will be going to press. I wonder if Rowling’s going to sue this version as well?

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  20. Danny said on December 11, 2008 at 1:32 pm

    Happy birthday, Mark. Have a great one!

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  21. Bryan said on December 11, 2008 at 1:34 pm


    I hear ya on folks thinking TV is better than newspapers. A recent survey of the Richmond media market revealed that more people think TV breaks more news instead than the newspaper. So what did the editor and publisher decide? That we would add a “breaking news” bug to most of our stories to tell readers when the stories were posted online. So not only do we tell readers what happened yesterday (we still use yesterday and tomorrow instead of days of the week), we tell them that they could have read a story online 18 or 19 hours before they got their newspaper. That will show those TV people!

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  22. LA Mary said on December 11, 2008 at 1:51 pm

    Not only live, Mark. I interviewed him for the high school paper. He had a big following among high school students and held news conferences just for high school papers. I think he may have died before Christmas Story came out.

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  23. Catherine said on December 11, 2008 at 2:06 pm

    I just made my whole family watch Holiday Inn. Now there’s a Christmas movie! White Christmas is on tap for this weekend.

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  24. Jeff Borden said on December 11, 2008 at 2:49 pm

    Why are Senate Republicans playing Grinch?

    Can someone explain to me how a country that just shed over a half-million jobs in one month, is mired in a recession that is likely to extend well into 2010, that already has millions of unemployed not to mention slobs like me who are underemployed, can countenance the willful destruction of the Big Three for ideological reasons? I simply cannot accept that the same group of august senators who’ve had no problem funneling more than $700 billion into the financial sector with virtually no oversight suddenly finds the process of a $14 billion bridge loan too much to swallow. This has to be about either (a) anti-union ideology or (b) efforts by Sun Belt powers to weaken the American auto industry to the benefit of the foreign firms who located in their right-to-work states.

    I’m genuinely gobsmacked by this, particularly after a presidential election in which Republicans embraced Joe the Plumber and hockey moms while railing at pointy-headed elitists. If this is the party of the “common man,” how can they allow an industry that supports so many jobs to be put at risk? Isn’t this awfully counter-intuitive?

    Republican posters. Please, help me understand why this is happening.

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  25. Bryan said on December 11, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    I’m surprised Mitch McConnell of Kentucky spoke out against the auto bailout. Ford, GM and Toyota all have assembly plants there. So you know he has seen some of their money in the past.

    The GM plant in Bowling Green, Ky., is one of the company’s most revered sites — it’s where Corvettes have been built since 1981, when the Bluegrass State lured the plant away from my beloved hometown of St. Louis. Folks who can afford to buy Corvettes often travel to the plant to watch their cars being “born” and then drive them off the line themselves.

    Good thing McConnell won’t be up for re-election until 2014. I’m sure his constituents are pleased as punch to know that he would rather send taxpayer dollars to Wall Street instead of his home state.

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  26. CrazyCatLady said on December 11, 2008 at 3:37 pm

    Yes, Beb, I mock your saying ‘warshing’, but never the outstanding job you do cleaning the dishes, pans, eating utensils and other implements. Our daughter’s Twilight addiction is good, but I fear seeing the movie. Sound like drivel to me, but who am I to be prejudiced against vampire/teen love?

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  27. Danny said on December 11, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    Jeff, the storyline is this: The Dems don’t want to bail out the workers nor the industry so much as they want to bail out the UAW. Big labor is getting a payback from the Democrats for their support (campaign doanations, anyone?). They don’t want the auto industry to go into bankruptcy.

    If the auto industry was allowed to go into bankruptcy, they could restructure and get out from under the industry-killing labor agreements. This would be a severe blow to the UAW and would likely cause a lot of political donations to go away.

    It’s probably a bit more complicated than this, but I say, follow the money. The above explanation makes some sense and it is really hard for me to remember the last time Congress acted in an altruistic manner.

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  28. mark said on December 11, 2008 at 3:51 pm


    I’ll take a shot a little later, but I have to change your ground rules a bit. I can’t justify the vote if the criteria for supporting the auto bill is that doing so is marginally less stupid than supporting Paulson’s bail-out or that the beneficiaries of the auto bill are marginally more deserving than the crooks getting money from Paulson.

    I think the financial bailout bill will be recognized as one of the dumbest, most damaging pieces of legislation ever.

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  29. Dexter said on December 11, 2008 at 4:21 pm

    My personal low-thermometer mark for cycling is 26F. A little thinsulate, a little Gore-Tex, and I seem to be OK, but now as I age I really curtail the mileage. I’ll hop on one of my old bikes no matter how cold it is for the quarter-mile trip to the lotto terminal in the party store…too cold to walk and too stupid a reason to fire up the van.
    Of course, being an old man, I never considered seeing Twilight, but I really miss Sooky and Bill the vampire…did you know that True Blood was the second-most-successful series HBO ever ran, bowing only to The Sopranos? New shows early next year!
    You FWA denizens remember Gateway Cinema? It was a three-screener. One Sunday afternoon I went to see Dreyfuss in “The Appenticeship of Duddy Kravitz”. As I left I noticed the lobby was wide open, so I , in turn, watched both other films, too. I never did that again.
    I guess that was “stealing”…wasn’t it?

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  30. Jolene said on December 11, 2008 at 4:23 pm

    It may well be that the proposed out is only better than not doing it. I really can’t believe they are willing to take the risk. I keep hearing that people now think it was a mistake to let Lehman Bros. fail. If that’s true, I can only imagine that letting GM will be worse.

    Every day there are reports of thousands more layoffs. And lately, reports of falling sales from developing countries, raising the possibility of failing governments.

    Is clinging to Republican ideology worth all this?

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  31. Jolene said on December 11, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Just a quick off-topic comment: Wasn’t that crash in San Diego awful? I felt so sorry for the young father who lost his whole family.

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  32. whitebeard said on December 11, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    Sure, Paulson and his merry men (rob the poor to help the rich) and supportive senators can pour hundreds of billions into greedy Wall Streeters who give up bonuses reluctantly but will accept cash retention awards of up to four million bucks each but cannot save the auto manufacturing heartland with $14 billion in LOANS, not handouts, not bailouts, but LOANS.
    Paulson will lose his parking pass for his Prius at the Treasury Department; it’s just not soon enough to solve the economic disaster that has crippled the globe under his watch.
    And now the banks and credit card warlocks are raising credit card rates to usurious rates and trying to get my 13- year-old grandson to get a credit card.
    The new team will have to curb the greed with regulations, jail sentences and heavy penalties that will put them in the poorhouse.

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  33. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 11, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    Jolene, i find i can’t think of almost anyone else when i’m not otherwise occupied after listening to his statement in front of a bank of cameras Tuesday. There are no words, and yet he found some anyhow. And as that man said, pray for the pilot who likely thought he had it pointed at a ravine when he punched out, and now lives with knowing his life was spared at the cost of a grandma, mother, and two babies. (Time to move that base, methinks; make the Marines and Navy play nice at a combined base.)

    From the horrendous to the merely painful — ditto the bet on the financial bailout being a historical “what were they thinking,” and on the auto industry thing, isn’t the main problem that we probably can and should ensure at least two companies are saved, but with Ford sidestepping the big steaming pile of poo for the moment (ensuring them one slot), then between GM and Chrysler, who wants to make the call on “yes” for one and “no” on the other? But merge ’em, and you may reinforce the deathspiral no matter how much money gets promised.

    Then there’s the union politics . . .

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  34. Jeff Borden said on December 11, 2008 at 4:54 pm


    I do appreciate all your insights. And you all make beaucoup sense, too. It’s the timing, I guess, that drives me nuts. This is like a guy calling the fire department when his house is on fire and being told he should install smoke detectors and a sprinkler system. Yes, you’re quite right, but meanwhile, my house is burning down.

    Every indication is that our economic situation is going to get worse, maybe much worse, before it begins to rebound. Can we afford to flood the nation with more unemployed just to teach the Big Three a lesson?

    BTW, I’m not opposed to a restructuring of some or all of the Big Three. And I loathe Harry Reid for trying to attach pay raises for federal judges to the package. Fie on him. I’m just wondering how many body blows our country can take and the ripple effect on so many suppliers if Detroit tumbles further.

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  35. LA Mary said on December 11, 2008 at 4:56 pm

    I think there are a lot of folks who have not been really been affected by the bad shit yet, as remarkable as that might sound. They will be hit soon, and they will be hit sooner if they let the big three auto makers die.
    I know things are not going well financially in some parts of my workplace and that layoffs will likely happen soon. My counterparts at our other facilities here in California seem oblivious to this, and looked at me like I was nuts at a meeting the other day. They should not think it can’t happen to them.

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  36. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 11, 2008 at 5:10 pm

    LA Mary, from the sounds of things tax-revenue-wise, Cali sounds as bad off as Ohio; is Ahnuld talking about this, or is it still bubbling out of sight?

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  37. LA Mary said on December 11, 2008 at 5:45 pm

    Ahnuld is talking. He’s on the tube everyday with his calendar, showing how many days have gone by without the legislature taking any action.

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  38. Danny said on December 11, 2008 at 5:47 pm

    Living in San Diego, I don’t really know what my personal low-thermometer mark for cycling is. But if I had to guess, I’d say anything below 40F would really suck.

    Since the time change, I’ve been doing a lot of my weeknight rides past sundown* and with the dry air and the sweat, it feels pretty cool. So I’m pretty much in long gear until the Spring time change.

    Nance, if I lived in the Big-D, I really don’t think I’d be outside riding at this point either. Sure, they have heavier gear, lobster gloves and face masks, but dang, that is a committment and I bet it would still be miserable.

    *Note, I have this dual LED Niterider system and I stay on a bike path that is 10 miles one-way and well away from the road. I would not recommend mixing it up with cars at night, regardless of your light system and reflective wear. It’s just not worth it.

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  39. alex said on December 11, 2008 at 6:19 pm

    Re the Big Three—

    Think about what this guy says:

    Think it’ll happen before bankruptcy is declared? Didn’t think so.

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  40. Dexter said on December 11, 2008 at 6:25 pm

    Danny, Nance: The ChiTrib has been running stories about their winter-cyclists; more and more are being seen. Very interesting stuff, most of in fitness blogs at the Trib web site.
    My entire family were fans of “Telling Tales”, Nance’s old NS column…just two days ago my younger brother brought up , in conversation, her story of the winter cyclists of The Fort.
    Still, it’s the LA Times that continually shows us new gear and machines , like the long , heavy-duty frame “world bikes” in a story last month.

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  41. nancy said on December 11, 2008 at 6:35 pm

    That column got me a spitting-mad voice mail from somebody — hope it wasn’t your brother. All I said was that there’s something about riding a bike to work on a bitter-cold winter pre-dawn that says, “I recently lost my license to my third drunk-driving charge.”

    And Danny — of course I don’t ride at night. That’s why God gave us spinning classes.

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  42. moe99 said on December 11, 2008 at 6:36 pm

    Got back to the office after a hearing this pm, and wolfed down the Fair Trade chocolate I had hidden in my desk drawer. I finished it and then had to look twice, because I couldn’t figure out how it disappeared so quickly. That’s how bad it’s been here…

    And i think that the air landing strip at the Miramar base the crippled plane was heading for was mostly closed down because it’s too close to a residential area. Ya think?

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  43. Danny said on December 11, 2008 at 6:44 pm

    All I said was that there’s something about riding a bike to work on a bitter-cold winter pre-dawn that says, “I recently lost my license to my third drunk-driving charge.”

    Oh, my gawd! You are a smartass lover’s dream come true.

    I see this guy on the bike path at night that has the same look. He has no gear to speak of, no helmet, wears a bandana, is really out of shape and just kinda plods along. It’s definitely a commute ride, not a rec ride. By my reckoning, in another few months he should have his license back.

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  44. Danny said on December 11, 2008 at 6:57 pm

    You know, I was reading San Diego UT blog comments from my fellow locals. A few of them voiced that same idea that Miramar MAS should be moved, but the growing consensus seemed to be that it was there first and that developers should not have built so close to it. And for 20 years elected officials and residents have considered that location a viable place to move the San Diego Airport. Seems like it was not a concern in the past and you have to figure a commercial flight path couldn’t be much safer than a miltary one. It isn’t like the military flyers are breaking the sound barrier and shattering picture windows all over the county. They save the risky stuff for over desert and ocean.

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  45. moe99 said on December 11, 2008 at 7:29 pm

    It’s time to play Name That Goon! Rod Blagojevich vs. Tony Soprano.

    Hands on buzzers: One’s a trash-talking thug trying to stay one step ahead of the law. The other was played by James Gandolfini. Can you identify the speaker of the ten quotes below?

    1. “Unless I get something real good…shit, I’ll just send myself, you know what I’m saying.”

    2. “What the fuck am I, a toxic person or something?”

    3. “Log off, that “cookies” shit makes me nervous!”

    4. “They’re not willing to give me anything except appreciation. Fuck them.”

    5. “You got no fuckin’ idea what it’s like to be number one. Every decision you make affects every facet of every other fucking thing.”

    6. “I’ve got this thing and it’s fucking golden, and I’m just not giving it up for fuckin’ nothing. I’m not gonna do it. And I can always use it. I can parachute me there.”

    7. “That motherfucker’s full of shit. He’s shaking me down.”

    8. “Our recommendation is fire all those fucking people, get ’em the fuck out of there…”

    9. “I could have made a larger announcement but wanted to see how they perform by the end of the year. If they don’t perform, fuck ’em.”

    10. “Jesus Christ! The money I’ve been dropping in here, I could’ve bought a fuckin’ Ferrari.”

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  46. moe99 said on December 11, 2008 at 7:30 pm


    Tony Soprano: 2, 3, 5, 7, 10
    Governor Blagojevich: 1, 4, 6, 8, 9

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  47. coozledad said on December 11, 2008 at 7:38 pm

    Me and my wife used to joke about this guy who Moped-ed by around 4 AM. The joke was, he was her paramour. But his DWI and job 160 miles distant in Richmond, were placing severe constraints on the relationship. I wasn’t helpful either. I clipped him with the car on the way to work, partially out of cuckold’s spite, but mostly out of natural Irish venom.
    I sincerely hope the poor bastard didn’t really have to work in Richmond.
    My wife referred to him affectionately as “Skeeter”.

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  48. coozledad said on December 11, 2008 at 7:48 pm

    I must reiterate this was a standing joke between me and my wife. I have never intentionally used a car as a weapon.

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  49. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 11, 2008 at 9:53 pm

    This may be old news to many, but a new laugh for our house (and we needed it today!) —

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  50. Catherine said on December 12, 2008 at 1:38 am

    Jeff, freaking hilarious and just what we needed too! I’m dancing like the little red-haired girl in the purple dress.

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  51. Dexter said on December 12, 2008 at 2:01 am

    I forgot to say it’s great to see my votes (many, many) helped raise the 20Gs.
    Scroll a couple turns down to the November entries on this blog I am linking for winter cycling information.

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  52. jcburns said on December 12, 2008 at 3:39 am

    Blog…has killed…blog!
    Newspaper…has killed…newspaper!
    Crappy local TV news program…has killed…Crappy local TV news program!
    Actor-turned-NRA-President…has killed…oh, wait, he’s just dead.
    But he’s made of people!

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  53. MarkH said on December 12, 2008 at 3:50 am

    Jean Shepherd lived to see much of the success of “A Christmas Story”, Mary. He died Oct. 16, 1999.

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  54. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 12, 2008 at 7:28 am

    And narrated “A Summer Story,” Ralphie’s sequel (albeit with different parents, visually speaking), also filmed at and around the same locations in Cleveland where you can visit the “A Christmas Story” house. Worth a watch if you can find it. Same format, except that a fighting top is the MacGuffin.

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  55. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 12, 2008 at 8:38 am

    (Correcting my above comment – it’s “My Summer Story”.)

    How can an atrocious review make you want to watch a movie? To be fair, i usually can’t find much to like in Manohla Dargis’ film crit in general, and this is another exemplar of “trying to hard.” But she gets plenty of cheap shots in on Detroit, and still manages not to make me dismiss the movie, which sounds like worth a watch, Detroiter or no:

    Congrats to Derick, glad we could help – getting thru college with minimal debt is only gonna be more important if you’re going to have some flexibility in what to do with your life when you get out.

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  56. alex said on December 12, 2008 at 9:17 am

    Good news, Brian! It looks like it’s going to be announced today that Indiana gets to keep the collections from the Lincoln Museum!

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  57. brian stouder said on December 12, 2008 at 9:36 am

    Alex – yes indeed! When the young folks and I were trooping out the door this morning (just before our current snow flurries began!) we had to step over the paper – and as I gave it to Pam the middle part fell out, and I said “Whoa!” – and read the article with much glee!

    At Galesburg in October, Dr Prokopowicz (Friend of NN.c) told me that the Smithsonian was out of the game, and that Gettysburg was making a somewhat belated push – so that Indianapolis looked to be in good shape.

    Considering how Illinois is shuttering any number of historic sites around the state* – this is doubly good news, indeed!

    *did you see the story (with picture) of a Lincoln-era house in Springfield. which was jacked up, put on wheels, and then rolled into the street…where it now sits, forsaken. Money ran out (to rebuild the foundation) and more money is not forthcoming, and there she sits. (also, the state shut down the David Davis house in Bloomington, amongst many other similar sites)

    Anyway – Huzzah! Indy has smitten me in recent years anyway – with their lovely canal walk and museums and so on and so forth. We’ll just have to beat a track down there a little more often

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  58. Lex said on December 12, 2008 at 11:18 am

    moe99: You are my new hero.

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  59. MarkH said on December 12, 2008 at 11:51 am

    Yes, moe, nice work.

    LA Mary, Jeff, see this entry from for stuff you may not know about Jean Shepherd, at least I didn’t; ex.: the inspiration for Howard Beale??

    Like wikipedia, IMDB can be suspect in its accuracy. Anyone can post a bio or trivia entry, and they say they verify prior to posting, but I’ve seen some whoppers in some movie and talent listings.

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