She’s got the look.

While the rest of you were discussing Mrs. Obama’s closet yesterday, I should have mentioned a couple of resources I depend on for all my Michelle Obama closet criticism needs.

There’s Tom & Lorenzo, of course, about whom I’d like to know more (even more than their about us link), if only to know how they seemingly are able to look at and absorb every single dress made by every single designer in the world, so that when Shelley O, as they call her, wears a Rachel Roy dress to the State of the Union speech, they have a post up within hours with multiple views of the dress — runway and in the wild — and something to say about it that’s actually worth reading. Because of their exhaustive coverage, I’ve learned that Shelley frequently has her pieces altered to show off her best features, changing a neckline or sleeve or hemline. I wonder who does that for her, and where she finds the time for all those fittings.

And lest you think they’re in the bought-and-paid-for left-wing media cabal of bum-smoochers, they don’t pull their punches when they don’t like something. Which gives them credibility, in my book. Besides the First Lady, they also offer the same bitchery/air kissery for red carpet looks of all occasions. Unlike the magazines, they ignore the paparazzi shots of starlets schlepping Starbucks cups between yoga classes, confining their criticism to those occasions when people who are paid to look good are on the job, which I think is very fair. Anyway, a daily stop for me.

Another is the Michelle Obama Look Book, from New York magazine’s website, which needs some housekeeping — it’s still labeled 2010. They have no criticism, just photos, but they do include those chopper-to-residence walk photos that are simply part of the presidential portfolio. If you want to see how a well-dressed woman looks when she’s not dressed up, it’s useful.

Mary Elizabeth Williams took a stab at saying the obvious — she can’t please everyone — this week in Salon, which featured another slideshow, every one of which I’d seen, but included a picture of Sasha and Malia, prompting a my-how-they’ve-grown from me. (Malia is now almost as tall as her mother.) It also contains a huge error that I can’t believe no one has fixed by now; Azzedine Alaia did not design Elizabeth Hurley’s safety-pin dress. Apparently the huge Versace buttons and Versace credit on their very own link eluded the copy editors.

And if you Google around a bit, you can find dozens of sites that do the same thing, including Mrs. O, as well as reams and reams of commentary like this.

To which I just added 443 words. Talk about unnecessary.

However, that will have to be my 443 words today. Not one but two early meetings, followed by another trip to the Subaru dealer in Ferndale for the endless soap opera of Alan’s Catalytic Converter Follies. You don’t want to know. So I have to fly early today. Have a great weekend, and maybe, if it’s not too brutally cold, I might find time for some Saturday morning marketing around here.

Posted at 7:44 am in Popculch |

91 responses to “She’s got the look.”

  1. brian stouder said on February 4, 2011 at 9:07 am

    Let me thank you in advance for all the great photo links. (I will surely surf them all this evening)

    I have visited that Tom and Lorenzo site via links from here several times before, and have always been impressed.

    And speaking of interesting news, just now, a Washington Post news alert has popped in, saying that unemployment has fallen to 9%, and it almost makes me feel one scintilla of sympathy for the calumny merchants on the right. No sooner then they get past the Arizona sheriff who called them out, then Egypt blows up (and it’s damned hard to pin that one on the president, but we learn that they’re trying mightily), and now THIS!

    I think it could drive them to redouble their efforts to try and rebrand the First Lady as a food-Nazi, who will dictate what we can eat, as she jets off to some foreign place (where lots of foreigners live, y’know).

    It’s hard out there, for a calumny merchant

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  2. Peter said on February 4, 2011 at 9:09 am

    Nancy, the converter on my 2000 Subaru Outback had problems, and the dealer repair shop had dreams of $$$, but I was able to find a shop that does Subaru’s (and that was no small accomplishment). The guy just welded pieces back on, and it’s been great since.

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  3. Jolene said on February 4, 2011 at 9:25 am

    Regrettably, Brian, the job news is not as good as it sounds. The unemployment rate has dropped, but it’s mainly because so many people have left the labor force. The number of jobs added is small, substantially below expectations. Heartbreaking.

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  4. MarkH said on February 4, 2011 at 9:53 am

    Jolene is absolutely correct, Brian. A closer look at all the numbers show that 9.0% figure to be bullshit. Add only 36,000 jobs and the rate drops 0.4%? In a MONTH?? Economists on all the money channels and websites are taking it apart. People who give up looking for work are not counted, and the January weather keeping people from working are factors as well. Right now, Labor Secretary Solis is positively apoplectic in trying to spin today’s jobs report on CNBC. Easy pickings for Mark Haines. Wait until February’s numbers show a more reasonable picture and a reverse upward in that unemployment rate.

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  5. brian stouder said on February 4, 2011 at 9:53 am

    Serves me right for only reading the headline!

    So the calumny merchants can ease up on trying to somehow arrange it so that whatever bad happens in Egypt is the president’s fault (and whatever good happens is despite his evil efforts), and instead focus on how the president is purposely ruining the economy?

    Well, hell; as Emily Latella would say, nevermind!

    (Srysly, I saw a segment on O’Donnell’s and Maddow’s show last night on the heavy-hitter calumny merchants on rightwing radio and other media, and it made me cringe. My resolution is to focus more on elected calumny agents, rather than the black-hearted Black Water mercenary ones)

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  6. Connie said on February 4, 2011 at 10:15 am

    We had catalytic converter issues with a Pontiac 6000 which we still refer to as “the farting car.” Of course it was also probably the only Pontiac 6000 in the world with Pirelli tires. (My brother is in the high end tire business.

    Here’s hoping that Alan’s car problems are fixed and that it’s not farting.

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  7. Sue said on February 4, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Brian, any improving jobs numbers will be taken as due to the election of all those Republicans a couple of months ago. Count on that.
    What I have read is that there is a concern that the majority of jobs being created are poorly paid and unbenefitted. No surprise there, unfortunately.
    Brian, did you catch Lawrence O’Donnell pointing out last night that Rush was making fun of reporters being attacked in Egypt, until he had to report that some Fox news reporters were attacked and badly hurt?

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  8. Crabby said on February 4, 2011 at 11:07 am

    See Bureau of Labor Statistics for other measurements of labor “underutilization”

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  9. Jolene said on February 4, 2011 at 11:11 am

    After my earlier message, I listened to a couple of economists talking about the labor statistics, and they were both more sanguine than I was. One, James Manzi, seemed to think that by spring, things would be substantially better based on current patterns. And, apparently, the earlier statement I’d read about people leaving the labor market was incorrect. Here’s an excerpt from the Post:

    The fall in the unemployment rate is a clearer positive sign for the economy. It came about not because people were giving up looking for jobs, which was part of the explanation for the December drop, but entirely because of more people counting themselves as having a job and fewer counting themselves as out of work.

    In one promising sign, a broader definition of joblessness that includes people working part time but who want full time work and those who have given up looking for a job out of frustration fell to 16.1 percent, from 16.7 percent in December.

    Besides being less affected by weather problems, the survey of households* also captures people who are self-employed and those who work in agriculture, who are not captured by the survey of employers on which job creation statistics are based.

    *The unemployment rate is based on a survey of households. The jobs number is based on a survey of employers.

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  10. Colleen said on February 4, 2011 at 11:16 am

    Well, here is how the tide is turning for this unemployed person: I’m going to get hours at two part time jobs, might eke out close to 40. Even so, I won’t make as much as unemployment. Have a shot at a full time job with bennies that pays just over 9 dollars an hour. Do the math on that one. Also less than unemployment. However, they will take me off the dole, so I will count as employed now, even though not in a good or better economic position.

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  11. brian stouder said on February 4, 2011 at 11:30 am

    Sue, yes. It is all too easy to imagine all the business people tooling down the highways, catching bits and pieces of the calumny cavalcade on their radios*, and nodding in agreement. I think many of these folks would not accept the endless assertions, if they really thought about them, but that’s not the game.

    Uncle Rush literally laughing (and expressing genuine hostility) about New York Times reporters getting attacked and beaten is entertaining; Uncle Rush “becoming serious” when Fox reporters are attacked and beaten pushes the listener to admit that, really, it wasn’t so funny to begin with.

    But it filled the time.

    *I get to talk to this class of folks all the time

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  12. Jolene said on February 4, 2011 at 11:55 am

    Speaking of things people do and don’t feel bad about, Chris Matthews was saying this AM that he was ashamed that our government is trying to depose Mubarak when he has been, in Chris’s view, such a good ally for such a long time.* He didn;t seem too troubled by the idea that we have, for decades, both relied on and supported a despot who tortures and otherwise oppresses the citizens he governs.

    *He didn’t think Mubarak should remain in office, just that we should be nicer to him as we force him out.

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  13. Jeff Borden said on February 4, 2011 at 11:58 am

    Rush Limbaugh is a festering, oozing infected boil on the ass of American discourse. If it were ever lanced, he’d shrink to about 57 pounds.

    Speaking of vicious demagogues with heads up their asses, I just read that SheWho has trademarked her name. So, too, has the revirginized Bristol. This is fairly common among celebrities, but extraordinarily rare among politicians. So. . .my thesis about SheWho never, ever running for public office again continues to look prescient.

    She’s in it for the money. Period.

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  14. Sue said on February 4, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    shewho®? $P®? Which one?

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  15. Sue said on February 4, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    Brian, I didn’t realize it isn’t just Rush mocking and laughing. What the hell is going on? Every time I think they’ve showed their worst, they top it.

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  16. Rana said on February 4, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    I’m betting that Michelle Obama only needed one fitting session in person; once a good tailor has your measurements, it’s not too hard to modify a dressmaker’s dummy to stand in for the client. (I’m about to do that myself; there’s a neat little kit you can buy of various shaped pads to customize your own off-the-rack dummy.)

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  17. Julie Robinson said on February 4, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    Colleen, I know a lot of people like you. This recession has been a great excuse for employers to screw their employees. Don’t like getting 15 hours/week at $7.50? Step aside, there are 20 waiting behind you.

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  18. Bitter Scribe said on February 4, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    Am I the only one who thinks that Mary Elizabeth Williams is the most inexplicably employed person at Salon since Cary Tennis?

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  19. Dorothy said on February 4, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Took the words right out of my mouth, Rana. I’m sure they have a dressmakers figurine somewhere that adheres to the specs for Shelly.

    Hey taking an informal poll – what’s everyone’s call for the Super Bowl this Sunday? Hope I don’t have to tell any of yins where my loyalties lie!

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  20. brian stouder said on February 4, 2011 at 2:35 pm

    Dorothy – I think your Steelers will earn an unalloyed victory against the Pack; but whatever happens, it will be a good game and I’ll be happy.

    (my oldest brother has been a Steelers fan as long as I can remember)

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  21. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 4, 2011 at 2:35 pm


    Here’s some Brian bait —

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  22. Sue said on February 4, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    This Bears fan has gotta go for the Packers. That Rodgers boy is such a fine young man.
    Bigger question: Who wins the best hair award?

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  23. basset said on February 4, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    Catalytic converter problems? Tell me more, I have an ’07 Outback… what were the symptoms?

    and a good Subaru mechanic is a rare find, around here I pretty much have to go get hit over the head at the dealer.

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  24. prospero said on February 4, 2011 at 3:19 pm

    Asia Times is a good source for reporting on Egypt.

    Somebody who knows what he’s talking about on comparisons of Egypt ’11 to Iran ’79. It’s humorous listening to conspiracy theories from the right wing on this subject. Actually falling all over themselves and more whack than usual trying to find fault with Obama over this. It’s also probably germane to point out that neither Rummy, nor Cheney, nor Reagan, nor Col. North, nor Fawn Hall’s underwear, nor any School of the Americas Central American Death Squad is involved in furthering this uprising.

    And Che’s old Marxist acolyte, Pepe Escobar, who also thinks the fear of the Muslim Brotherhood is a crock of a scare tactic. Rightwing types have an affinity for dictators, and even in this day and age, see one world government and terriss behind every tree. Not typical “mainstream liberal media”, pretty much an unreconstructed and died-in-the-wool Marxist firebrand. Actually. Entertaining writer.

    Steelers have Hines Ward. the best “football player” wide receiver. Those weenie LBs with 50 lbs. on Hines that whine about his devastating blocks downfield need to learn how to play and just shut up. Besides, anybody that smiles like that when he’s playing really just loves playing. Steelers it is for me. I’ve despised the Packers for a long time.

    Jeff, are you aware that Rush got a 4F deferment because he had a pilonidal cyst. Pretty much like a boil on his ass. He has repeatedly tried to claim it was an old football injury. yeah from sitting on a bench for a year.

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  25. Dorothy said on February 4, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    The best hair has to go to Mr. Brett Keisel:

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  26. Kirk said on February 4, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    I’ll be pulling for the Packers, but if I were betting, I’d put my money on Bum Rapistberger asnd the Steelers.

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  27. Julie Robinson said on February 4, 2011 at 3:58 pm

    The only part of the Super Bowl I’m interested in is generally the halftime show, but this year I’m excited about the new Glee episode which will run right afterwards. We’re having a competition at church as to which side can bring in the most food for the food bank and I don’t know where to put mine–maybe I’ll just split it evenly. It’s called the Souper Bowl.

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  28. prospero said on February 4, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    Nobody is ever going to outdo Prince’s phallic shadow play at Super Bowl halftime. He got away with murder. We pretty much fell on the floor, laughing uncontrollably.

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  29. brian stouder said on February 4, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    Shelby, our resident 12 year old*, really likes that Polamalu feller, who has GOT to win the hair award!

    *She always gets to run the radio in the morning as we make our way to her school bus stop, and consequently I find myself absently humming the tune that goes with the lyric: “DEEjay – Turn it up tup tup tup tup; DEEjay…” etc etc, the rest of the day

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  30. Sue said on February 4, 2011 at 4:33 pm

    Off topic, but…
    A remake of Arthur with Helen Mirren in the Gielgud role? Sounds like it might work.

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  31. MarkH said on February 4, 2011 at 5:06 pm

    Peter, bassett — Be careful if you’ve got cat converter problems. They should not be repaired, but replaced to work properly and not be dangerous, as they get HOT. Subaru cat converters come with an 8 year/80,000 mile warranty. Peter, yours is beyond its shelf life, while basset’s should easily be covered if it’s an ’07 model. Look at your warranty book and call the dealer on it. And, Peter, I would run for the hills from a mechanic that performed a “repair” like that on a cat converter. It may seem to run fine, but there could be damage going on in the engine. Are you in Califiornia, Peter? Back around 2000, CA emmission Subaru CCs had special problems and were to be replaced regardless of warranty expiration. Again, do your research and pressure the dealer on it. I’m surprised anyone would have a hard time finding a Subie mechanic. But, then out here in the mountain west, they’re all over the place. Everyone in Jackson works on them.

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  32. Catherine said on February 4, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    The thing that seems to have been forgotten (because it was reported, oh, last week) in the employment numbers is that January had the lowest layoff numbers since 1993, when the survey began. Fewer people getting laid off can help reduce the unemployment numbers, too. So, I think there is some cause for cautious optimism.

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  33. MichaelG said on February 4, 2011 at 6:08 pm

    I went out and bought a Honda this morning. I traded my old Ford on a new Element. Orange. I’ll get the new car tomorrow or Monday. It’s in the pipeline, hasn’t even been delivered to the dealer yet. The tranny on the Taurus was getting wonky and it needed brakes and I’ve recently done the fuel pump and the water pump so I figured it was time.

    Lots of Zubies here as well. No problem getting them worked on.

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  34. moe99 said on February 4, 2011 at 6:34 pm

    I have a Sabooroo too. That’s how they pronounce the name in KY. It’s a 2000 that leaks when it rains (not good in Seattle) and leaks oil, but it’s been a great little car for me all these years.

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  35. Julie Robinson said on February 4, 2011 at 6:47 pm

    Elements always seem to have a canoe or bicycle strapped to them. Their boxiness is inexplicably cute to me.

    Since learning that IU grad Antwaan Randle El plays for Pittsburgh I have a team to root for. My hubby says he even gets to play occasionally.

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  36. basset said on February 4, 2011 at 8:39 pm

    Our local Subaru dealer is so high-pressure and predatory that I bought mine about 150 miles away just to avoid having to deal with them; haven’t found a good independent shop, but this is Tennessee.

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  37. Colleen said on February 4, 2011 at 8:41 pm

    Two Subies in our driveway. LOVE them.

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  38. Dexter said on February 4, 2011 at 11:01 pm

    I looked at an ’02 Subaru Outback today…way overpriced…7 grand, 127 K miles, for a ten year old vehicle.

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  39. Dexter said on February 4, 2011 at 11:12 pm

    If you break down in your foreign car on the Ohio Turnpike or on Route 127 anywhere near Williams County, you will be towed to Randy Snyder’s Suburban Auto. I have dealt with this man and his sons for many years, especially when I drove a VW Microbus and a Jetta.
    They have never let me down…even with numerous problems with my old Volvo wagon I used to drive. A friend was passing through driving an old Subaru,and his axle failed him, and Randy squeezed him in , overnighted in the parts, and fixed it the next day. These guys are good. Randy won the 1965 VW racing National trophy; it sits in the lobby of the shop. This crew can fix anything.
    Worth a long drive, too, to get great repair service on out-of-warranty cars…and I think they can do most warranty work, too…but you would have to check that.

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  40. MarkH said on February 5, 2011 at 1:28 am

    I spent seven years retailing cars, all the major brands, and Subaru is still my favorite of all the ones I sold. Very reliable, easily fixed, it made for repeat buyers. Best value out there still, as they are all AWD, for about the same price as comparable Hondas and Toyotas with FWD.

    Dexter, that 7K is not too far off, even in your area:

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  41. MichaelG said on February 5, 2011 at 2:43 am

    Holy shit, Dexter. I barely spent three times that for a brand new Honda still on the truck with a 100K mile extended warranty. I know this is the last year for the Element and it’s 2wd but good Lord . . .

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  42. basset said on February 5, 2011 at 6:26 am

    It’s pretty much routine, though, MichaelG, for a properly maintained Subie to go at least 200K, and 300 is not unusual. Subies, at least before the current generation, have an appealing weirdness that you won’t find elsewhere, they’re cheap to run, reliable, and at least the Outback has some limited offroad capability – mine will climb the ridges on our deer lease with 400 lb. of salt and shelled corn in the back, no problem.

    And… the Outback is made in Indiana.

    Only drawback for me is that I can’t find a good independent Subaru shop around Nashville, still looking though.

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  43. coozledad said on February 5, 2011 at 9:32 am

    My Subaru Legacy Postal still runs good, even though the first 30,000 miles I put on it were half-on and half-off the road. It’s too low for delivering certified letters to the indigents and suckers peopling the heartland of North Carolina, though. I nearly tore the front off the first week I got it driving up to a trailer swathed in broomsedge, and hit a stump in the yard delivering a dun for some dipshit’s sattelite TV payment.
    I guess it was good to get that out of the way early, because I’ve had it for twelve years and have only seen fit to wash it twice.

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  44. brian stouder said on February 5, 2011 at 12:17 pm

    Just finished surfing the various Michelle links that Nance posted, and I’ve gotta say – that was good stuff!

    Pam and I disagreed about the first lady’s State of the Union Dress back when we watched the event (she didn’t like it; I thought it had a Mary Tyler Moore mid-60’s retro-rockin’ effect), and as we gazed at the dress anew, along with the Wal Mart dress that got panned, I think she came closer to agreeing with me.

    Anyway, I thought I wouldn’t like the Daily Beast piece, but as it turned out, that essay capped off the picture surfing perfectly.

    Looks like Kirk’s Columbus contingent is going to be coming into the Fort along with a fairly heavy snow squall.

    Here’s hoping all y’all have a fun Saturday

    As I write this at the computer in the kitchen, my eyes are watering. Pammy chopped and diced a bunch of onions for a big pot of something or other (stew? Not sure; not gonna ask; pot full of something is safely ensconced in the stove)

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  45. brian stouder said on February 5, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    By the way, although I’ve never owned a Subaru, let me say that I think their ad campaign is pretty clever.

    Have you seen the ad (which has no dialogue) where a youngish married couple goes to a class reunion, and the husband exchanges nods with an old girlfriend across the room, as we then see a flash-back of them as a carefree couple cruising in their old Subaru?

    At the end of the commercial, the married couple walk from their new Subaru past their old Subaru (which the fellow still owns….unless it was always his wife’s, and the duplicitous cad borrowed it from her back in the day, to take out that blonde bitch!…but we digress), as a singer’s lyrics muse about “the very first one”……

    Pam and I have disagreed about what that commerical is really telling us; at the very least, Subaru’s ad is simmering and a little subversive. (It stuck with me, though, so it certainly is effective)

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  46. Dexter said on February 5, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    I have never experienced powder-snow coming down with such fury! I mean never.
    I shovelled twenty feet and walked back through a totally covered walkway. It is just a complete white-out and it is getting very deep, on top of the blizzard’s snow-pack. I cannot see three houses down my block. All I can say is “wow!”.
    I have called off my trip to Fort Wayne and this car stays parked until this passes if it ever does.
    My old army buddy in Connecticut writes “I was using my snow rake , wearing snow-shoes, and a shoe became entangled in my nearly totally covered hedge, I toppled over and my arms pushed through the snow pack and I was stuck face down in the snow with a shoe tangled in vegetation…” man…I thought I had troubles!

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  47. nancy said on February 5, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    Subaru is also a master of stealth marketing to the gay community, particularly lesbians, who are so fond of their product line it’s almost a cliché. I recall one print ad that featured a number of vanity plates on their cars, and some copy like, “No matter what you’re into,” etc.

    One of the plates was XENA LVR.

    Amusing: What is a Lesbaru?

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  48. beb said on February 5, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    Police have filled the stree all around our house. House invasion on a house a across from the street from us. Home owner and his son are dead. I may have seen the killer. I may have pointed at him before realizing that he had a gun. No shots were fired. Once brain kicked into gear I got off the street. This is crime AWAY too close to home.

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  49. Deborah said on February 5, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    Beb, take care. In past neighborhoods I have lived in things happened like you described. Keep safe.

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  50. moe99 said on February 5, 2011 at 6:59 pm

    Oh, beb, let us know the denouement. How tragic.

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  51. MarkH said on February 5, 2011 at 7:12 pm

    beb, that’s horrible. Thought and prayers to you and your neighborhood. Yes, keep us posted.

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  52. MarkH said on February 5, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    Cooz, I live where there is a large rural mail delivery area and was lucky enough to sell two of those right-hand-drive Legacy mail wagons. Like you, one lady still has her ’93 running strong. As a long time niche carmaker, I thought that was the coolest nich-iest thing Subaru did. EDIT: next to the late lamented Brat.

    MichaelG, not sure what you thought was the good thing or the bad thing there, Dexter’s $7K used Subie or what you paid for the Element.

    bassett is correct as well. Most Subies will last a long time even if not well maintianed. Out here, it’s a source of pride among some folks to fanatically maintain their Subarus just so they can thump their chests about having 250,000+ miles on a car that looks like it’s got way less than 100,000.

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  53. Dexter said on February 5, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    When I suggested a Subaru Forester to joodyb last Tuesday, I was gonna make a joke about the lesbian connection, but I decided to see if nance would come up with something, which she has.
    A blogger who I got to know on Craig Crawford’s CQ TrailMix blog, who calls himself “Brian in NYC” started his own political blog, linked here.
    Brian’s an openly gay man; it’s his brother who owns a Subaru dealership up in New Hampshire, if I recall.
    I used to razz my older brother for driving the gay man’s dream car, the Mazda Miata. I never got under his skin with my jokes, mainly because he had never even heard anything about the Mazda Miata being considered so gay.
    I have driven a helluva lot of cars and never associated sexiness or sex orientation factors in any of them, and I would do the same if I ever got a Lesbaru. The only car I got a lot of comments on were my VW Microbuses ( I had three). People always thought those buses were “DUDE! totally awesome, dude!”

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  54. Dexter said on February 5, 2011 at 8:42 pm

    Ovation network, 9:00 PM , as in like 18 minutes…Johnny Cash, Folsom Prison concert to be shown.

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  55. MichaelG said on February 5, 2011 at 8:59 pm

    I don’t mean to be a smart ass and I’m not a used car expert, Mark, but after a brief glance at eBay, $7000 seems like all the money for the car Dexter referenced, especially from a rust belt city. For that kind of money I’d expect the car to be clean, well maintained and totally dry.

    I’m not criticizing Subarus at all. Quite the opposite, in fact. By all accounts they’re great cars and I’ve never heard a negative word said about them. I considered one while shopping over the past few weeks but a new Outback costs significantly more than a similarly equipped new Element, although the hefty resale value does offset the price. Hondas also have excellent resale value. In the end, price, the cavernous interior of the Element and the fact that I have no use for 4 wheel drive drove my choice. Especially the first two. Twenty one grand is a good price for an Element EX in Sacto. If you can find one cheaper, I congratulate you. I have heard that Honda had a pretty fair clearance sale in Dec. Don’t tell me any details. I’ll just feel bad.

    Scary stuff, beb. Keep your head down.

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  56. Joe Kobiela said on February 5, 2011 at 9:04 pm

    Mrs Pilot Joe owned a Subaru Brat when we first started dating. Great little car. Left at Midnight last night and went to Fayettvill Ark. Flew back in the snow almost the whole way. Got back to Auburn about 10:45am and what a surprise. They totaly blew this forcast. Had to use the snowblower in the yard to make a place for the dog to go. We do spoil him a bit.
    Pilot Joe

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  57. basset said on February 5, 2011 at 9:43 pm

    Remind me to make sure Mrs. B. is not wearing a flannel shirt next time she drives our Outback.

    When we first started dating, she had a Pinto with Firestone Radial 500s and the exploding gas tank.

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  58. Dexter said on February 5, 2011 at 10:37 pm

    basset, I bought a brand new 1974 Pinto wagon and drove it to LA. Great car, but I really messed up by ordering one with no A/C. Because I drove it across The Mojave in the daylight. Yeah, I know…STOO-PID ! Needles, California saw a record for one-man lemonade consumption that day.
    Still have MY WATER BAG

    Pilot Joe: They REALLY blew this forecast…my God, I never, ever saw snow like we had this afternoon.

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  59. LAMary said on February 5, 2011 at 10:45 pm

    Not only are Subies lesbian cars, so are Elements. Sorry MichaelG. You have a chick magnet there but it probably won’t do you much good.

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  60. Dexter said on February 6, 2011 at 12:51 am

    HaHA…@ LAM…and , Spring can’t be far, in some places anyway…like San Francisco’s Chinatown…
    Flower Day in The City’s Chinatown

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  61. prospero said on February 6, 2011 at 1:06 am

    Who isn’t to <a href="Bill Bates“>a>href=”V”>blame? How is anybody not? Seriously, can any sane person claim this cat isn’t totally insane?. Please give me a break. Obamacare? Which part don’t you like? Preconditions? No. that’s OK. Coverage for kids? No, that’s OK So which part don’t don’t you like? Obama. And which part of Obama don’t you like. He’s a Democrat. And which part other than that do you really dislike? Wrong color. Boehner’s permanent dyspepsia is most certainly a result of a a black black guy beeing the President. Something about that is just not right. That 3/5ths wasn’t just an accident. Original intent meant Italian American thugs like Scalia could impose their original intent, and install a shitheel American exceptionalist idiot as President. and fuck the budget over in the neocon’s interest. And act like all of those pallets o’ cash didn’t just get transferred sub rosa to Cheney’s bank accounts. Does anybody think that didn’t happen? I guess Iran-Contra didn’t happen either. And I guess my old friend Danny Casolaro didn’t get murdered by these Reagan assholes either. And Reagan’s regime never was responsible for murdering and raping any Maryknoll nuns. Or Jesuit priests. These fuckers were evil, and eventually somebody will hold them responsible. But raping nuns was OK because Catholics were just members of a demonic cult, according to so-called Christians that lived to support the Raygun cult. How were these people remotely Christian? Catholics in Central America supporting social justice aren’t Christian? Because they’re Catholics? Fuck you Raygun. and Fuck the School of the Americas. And if you countenance shooting Medeiros when he’s distributing Communion, you are the face of evil. The great communicator did this exact thing. Fuck Ronald Raygun. He basically signed off on murdering Bishop Medeiros at the altar rail. But you know, Catholics are just some sect. Not actually Christians. Despite being the real Christians to begin with. I’m not kidding. How does anybody get to interpreting the bible,? You really have to be full of shit altogether. These jackasses just pull some verse out of their ass. It rarelely has to to do with anything. They just spout this shit out of their ass. It almost never has anything to do with anything. We couldn’t say anything about anything.

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  62. prospero said on February 6, 2011 at 1:17 am

    Why is everybody so sure Ben is guilty? legal shit down GeorgIA, WE RIP THIS assholE A NEW ONE. WE HAVE TO BE KIDDING. We Have to be kidding. Are you kidding? Seriously. You have to be an idiot. No ahit you idiot.

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  63. prospero said on February 6, 2011 at 3:09 am

    No sahit, She’s hLFy doos=looking. We won’t be satisfied until we get blood on the pillbox. These people that have this biggus dickus about this Obama shit are a bunch of morons that should just shut up’

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  64. prospero said on February 6, 2011 at 3:13 am

    What is wrong with people? What Republicans dont like about Obamacare is that he’s black. Fuck them all fore being a bunch of bigots.

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  65. prospero said on February 6, 2011 at 9:07 am

    Has HJoward Beal gone off the rails?

    Glenn is nucking futs over Egypt. All over himself Is it Nazi? Ia it Commoniss? He jusat can’t figger. It’s Nazi-commoniss but it surely is Obama’s fault. Even when nothing’s wrong Is it Marxiat, democratic? He can’t figure that out. How to blame the nigger. What Gabby Johnson said. This does seem to be the Republican problem. There isn’t anything they say they don’t lke about the health care law. Not a single qualitativw THING. What they don’t like is the Obama part. They don’t like he’s a democrat. And black.

    They really don’t like the absolute fact he’s black. If you continue to think this has nothing to do with race, you are a moron. There is a large portion of moron white males that believe no black guy can run the country. Like qhite guys did a good job. Paint W, Brown. Appointed by an activist court that felt completely comfortable with fucking over the electoral process.

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  66. beb said on February 6, 2011 at 9:30 am

    Moe, there is no denouncement. Killer is still at large. But it is thought that their house was invaded because the son was an avide hunter so there were guns in the house. I got interviewed by a news crew late last night. I told them I didn’t want to be interviewed but like an idiot I kept standing them and talking to them. Showed up on Channel 4. I guess ‘No’ doesn’t mean no unless you slam the door in their face….

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  67. ROgirl said on February 6, 2011 at 10:38 am

    I couldn’t care less about the 100th anniversary of Ronald Reagan’s birth, except that my father’s birthday was also Feb. 6th, so I have to be reminded that although he was 7 years younger than the Gipper, he died in 1999, 3 days after his birthday. And he couldn’t have been President because he was born in Canada, and although he lost both his parents when he was 5 years old and lived in an orphanage in Detroit for 6 or so years, he was smart and won a scholarship to the University of Michigan at the age of 16, and he was politically progressive even though he spent most of his professional life working in the auto industry.

    On the day of his funeral I found out that he kept from me the news that my mother had been cheating on him, which I had suspected but never knew for sure (and which my mother was convinced he had told me). I also found out that in World War II he volunteered to be dropped behind enemy lines in occupied France to blow up bridges. He would have been in the Battle of the Bulge except that he got a timely case of appendicitis. He ended up in the OSS in Germany in 1946 as an interrogator. I knew about the appendicitis and Germany in 1946, and I knew that he attributed his later hearing loss to the army, but he never talked about the reason why he was practicing blowing stuff up.

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  68. prospero said on February 6, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    ROgirl. That’s a devastating story. Women cheat, and I just watched Ryan’s Daughter. Women are perfidious as men are. There’s one for every. For no good reason but lust, which is a poor reason for being a liar.

    Super Bowl: You have to love Hines Ward. Consummate. So good it’s ridiculous.. And this is how you play the game. Witht a smile on your face. Because it’s fun. Seriously, those dickheads that are way bigger that complain about getting hit, keep your oversized head in the game. If you get lit up on a blindside block, it means you were not taking things seriously. And Hines will pick your ass up with a smile on his face.

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  69. MichaelG said on February 6, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    At my age I’ll take any magnetism I can get, Mary. Besides, I’m above all that petty stuff. What do you think I should wear?

    San Francisco is in the seventies this weekend, Dexter. Same here. Chinatown’s a wonderful place. I used to shop there all the time and the Chinese New Year’s parade is a great event. My daughter used to march in it when she was attending the Choy Lay Fut kung fu school. It’s an evening parade, run in the dark, and a nice Chinese dinner was always part of the night.

    There’s a bus route, the 30 Stockton, which goes through Chinatown. Everybody used to call the 30 Stockton the “Orient Express.” I took it all the time when I lived in the Marina. It stopped right on my corner and ran downtown. It’s a trolley bus.

    Trolley buses were fun. Kids would run behind them and pop the poles off the wire. The driver would then have to go back behind the bus and get the pick-up on the end of the pole aligned with the wire and connected. That had to be enjoyable, especially in the rain. Sometimes the driver would go around a corner too fast or at the wrong angle and lose the wire himself. I wonder how much those Marina apartments run today.

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  70. prospero said on February 6, 2011 at 1:29 pm

    I believe my mom and dad were tried and true. I believe my spouse had somebody else’s kid. I love the kid, seriously, and I’ll love her mom until the day I die (it’s all my fault). And her mom is a serial ahole, but no way I’d expose the kid to this. Maybe I’m not her dad after all. Some failed accountant is. What a stupid ass. I surely hope he’s not the dad. Boring beyond comprehension. You can think about these things however you want to. Do me a favor and make it up the way you like. So what what this nonsense plays. No joke, Steelers. They have the best player.

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  71. prospero said on February 6, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    Who’s to ay. still remember what is fulll of drp. ou zhould conzider aht zchmotz thiz iz.

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  72. Dexter said on February 6, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    MichaelG…Single family units are going for 1.7 it looks like.

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  73. MichaelG said on February 6, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    The San Francisco Marina District has some of the best apartments anywhere. They are on the corners of streets like Francisco. I lived in two different buildings there, one at Francisco and Broderick and the other at Francisco and Divisadero. The buildings are all three storey walk ups with garages for the tenants. The stairs are very wide, making it easy to haul mattresses and couches in and out. The apartments were very large one bedroom and studio units, bright and airy with huge closets and separate kitchens. The place was fantastic and altogether, the Marina is probably the best place I’ve ever lived. When I lived there in the seventies and eighties rents ran about $750. Single family homes have been seven figures for decades. For urban living, I’d stack the SF Marina up against any city in the world without reservation.

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  74. MichaelG said on February 6, 2011 at 5:11 pm

    Well, that link doesn’t work worth a hoot. One was 2295 Francisco although on Google street view it shows as 2297. Later when we got married we lived at 2395. I remember our first Christmas tree – a little Charlie Brown thing. We had just gotten married on 12-21. Jeez, we had a small second hand TV.

    Sorry for inflicting my memories on you but I had great times there.

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  75. brian stouder said on February 6, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    Speaking of cheating spouses, this weekend we Red Boxed the movies Social Network and The Kids are All Right.

    I was wondering about why they called the movie The Kids are All Right, instead of The Kids are Alright, and now that we’ve seen it, I still have no idea about that odd choice (surely it wasn’t because they knew no better?)

    The movie took me by surprise; I had thought it would be family friendly, but it turned out NOT so (luckily Pam over-rode me, when I told Shelby she could watch it with us). It has several entirely gratuitous (and fairly graphic) sex scenes, and by the end of it – the entire movie struck me as simply gratuitous.

    I think my number one complaint is – when you see a married “straight” couple, wondering what they do in their bedroom isn’t usually on the list; and one would hope that NOT wondering about what married “gay” couples (who drive Subarus) do in their bedrooms would be a good thing to reinforce.

    But in this movie, we not only go there, but some ridiculous stereotypes get put into play for us, too.

    My one-word review would be: Bleh

    Social Network was interesting, although the structure of the movie – jumping from one flashback to anotherm from a pre-trial conference – becomes fairly tiresome.

    Plus – the movie is relentlessly misogynistic. At the very end, there is a scene that I strongly suspect was added, so that at least ONE woman could be seen as other than a sex object, or target of derision, or inconsequential nuisance.

    If the movie wins Oscars, I suppose one cannot really complain; the movie captures a pretty dark side of American innovation. It is at least a little bit convenient that the movie never even whispers just HOW Facebook manages to claim a market valuation of $25 billion (or however many billions it is).

    Taking advantage of the trust of all those millions of users, and marketing the magical “private” information that those users entrust Facebook with, would sort of parallel the way the fratboy founders view women. As it is, the source of the huge market valuation of the Facebook enterprise is like a Black Hole at the center of the movie, and we never go anywhere near it.

    (Maybe I was in no mood for movies today!)

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  76. Deborah said on February 6, 2011 at 6:25 pm

    Sitting in LaGuardia waitng to return to Chicago. It’d been a year or so since I was last in Manhatten, and I gotta say it is really dirty compared to Chicago. Granted there was tons of grey snow all over the place and it is the bleak middle of winter so that doesn’t help either. Still it is one hell of a great cultural Mecca.

    No real celebrity sitings this time, unless you count Michael Musto who was eating lunch at the same place we were on Friday. I had to ask my husband what Musto’s name was, he looked familiar but I couldn’t quite place him as someone I’ve seen on some cable shows.

    I’ve got a sore throat and my husband has a bad sinus infection. Fellow travelers beware.

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  77. moe99 said on February 6, 2011 at 9:00 pm

    Brian, The Kids movie ran afoul of the the Who’s song. Which was why it was titled the way it was. My pick for the Oscar is True Grit, anyway.

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  78. LAMary said on February 6, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    Watch that sore throat. I started with that and a headache last Sunday and by Tuesday had a cough that sounds like the croup. And hurts like a mother. I stil have the cough and the sore throat and a temperature of 99.5, so no more being a good soldier. I’m staying home tomorrow and spending the day in bed. No work, no laundry, no grocery shopping. A week of this is bad. I would be concerned more if I didn’t know of three other people with the same symptoms so it seems to be a nasty bug that’s going around.

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  79. basset said on February 6, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    Dexter, closest I can do to the Pinto across the Mojave story is to have bought a VW Rabbit (square-headlight, Pennsylvania-built POS) with no air conditioning. And a black interior. In Mississippi.

    Spent this morning walking behind a pack of beagles looking for rabbits. Didn’t see a one, doesn’t matter… I am reminded why hunting dog owners sometimes refer to “hound music.”

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  80. brian stouder said on February 6, 2011 at 9:08 pm

    Moe – Thanks for the tip about where that movie title cae from.

    Regarding True Grit, I could not possibly agree more completely!

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  81. nancy said on February 6, 2011 at 9:16 pm

    You went beagling, Basset? That’s a popular pastime among spry ex-fox hunters who have decided to stop tempting paralysis with every fence. And some do the same thing with bassets, but I’ll stop before I get into a beagles-bassets-Basset loop.

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  82. brian stouder said on February 6, 2011 at 10:37 pm

    Dorothy, I really (really) thought your Steelers were gonna come back and win that game; and indeed they did come back and make a game of it, at the end.

    Coming into the game, I really didn’t care who would win; but to be honest I began to root for those Packers, as the Steelers roared back into the game after their early deficit.

    Anyway – it was an entertaining game, although I think the commericals were underwhelming. Those Doritos commercials at the beginning? Those were terrible! (Licking another person’s fingers? Licking their pants? Is this supposed to make anyone want to buy a bag of their chips?)

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  83. Dexter said on February 6, 2011 at 11:43 pm

    brianstouder: I really liked the Eminem / Detroit was for Chrysler…”imported from Detroit”. I loved it. But what was that commercial where some poor bastard got kicked in the nuts about ten times, including once in the penis by what appeared to be an eight year old girl? Disgraceful!

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  84. Dexter said on February 7, 2011 at 1:31 am

    …and…well, they shoot horses, don’t they? Christina Aguilera ? If you ever try to sing our national anthem again I will report you to the authorities with the purpose of getting you to singing voice re-hab and re:education treatments.
    Hey Christina? Did you ever hear of a teleprompter? And some people thought Roseanne Barr was bad in San Diego about fifteen years ago or whenever….

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  85. Jolene said on February 7, 2011 at 7:00 am

    Boy, you’re tough, Dexter. I thought the singing was good. She just missed a line. She has since professed her undying love for America and there are videos of her online singing the song correctly on other occasions, so the re-education camp might be a little strong.

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  86. Julie Robinson said on February 7, 2011 at 8:27 am

    Aguilera is a bigger name, but I thought they should have swapped the two singers since Lea Michele is a much stronger singer with a better range. It makes a strong case for America the Beautiful to become our national anthem–most people can sing it, it has a beautiful melody, and isn’t militaristic.

    Brian, I also found The Kids disappointing and thought it odd that the gratuitous six was hetero, not lesbian. It felt as if they stopped trusting themselves halfway through the movie and took the conventional, easy path. It could have been so much more thought provoking and appropriate as a conversation starter between parents and kids. In the end, it was just distasteful.

    The Packers also won the Souper Bowl at our church by a huge margin. The real winner was the food bank and it was a fun competition. If you have enough to eat, please consider a donation to your local food bank. Too many people are living in hunger right now.

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  87. Dorothy said on February 7, 2011 at 8:47 am

    Of course I am disappointed at the outcome of the game but I also have a “You can’t win them all” attitude. The Steelers just seemed off most of the night. It wasn’t their typical play off kind of game. I’m glad for Packers fans. I missed most of the commercials in the first half because we were at a party and the volume on the t.v. was not loud enough to hear them. Twenty-some people chattering sort of drowns out commercials. But I had already seen the best one of the night on YouTube earlier in the day. Little Darth Vadar was a gas! I’ll have to replay the game on the DVR, fast forward through the game and find the Detroit ad. I heard it was really great.

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  88. Jolene said on February 7, 2011 at 8:54 am

    Dorothy, you should check out the ad for the Motorola Xoom (an iPad competitor) too. I thought it was pretty cute, and smart in its reference to the famous Apple ad of years past. You can see it here.

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  89. Jolene said on February 7, 2011 at 9:04 am

    More Super Bowl ads here.

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  90. DellaDash said on February 7, 2011 at 9:40 am

    Glad I tuned into the game, even though I haven’t followed throughout the season. Found myself rooting for the Steelers to come out from under. Exciting to the end.

    ‘Motor City’ Eminen backed by a choir was my favorite commercial, too, Dex.

    I liked ‘The Kids’…a lot…recommended it to my elderly mother…was shocked when she asked me what in the world made me think she would like it (so loud she had to shut it down in the first few minutes). Now I know how she happened to reserve a Who video from the library by mistake. The sex isn’t gratuitous, it’s central to the story. Bening twanged and plucked all my strings superbly, as did the rest of the ensemble.

    Brian, I beg to differ about ‘The Social Network’, and will do so at greater length further down the day, either here or in the next thread. Meanwhile, as I get ready for work, I’ll corral the thoughts I’ve been having since viewing it last week. Much as I adored ‘True Grit’, I think ‘Network’ is going to pull top-Osc, with good reason(s).

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  91. Laurie said on February 7, 2011 at 9:51 am

    Brian and Julie, I am with you on “The Kids.” After I saw it, I noticed ads appearing to market it as a heartwarming, family-friendly movie, and I mentally cringed for the proper older folks going to see it or parents taking their teenaged kids. The explicit sex scenes seemed gratuitous to me, as did the constant T ‘n A of college girls (and younger) girls in “The Social Network.” Bleeahhh. “The King’s Speech” was refreshing in comparison, and it was not hard to imagine that the couples in that movie had robust love lives.

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