A new gear.

Can’t lie — my mind is rather full of personal stuff at the moment, and not focused at all on blogfodder. It’ll pass, but it makes for slim pickin’s here. The next couple of weeks are going to be busy-like-crazy. The start of classes at Wayne, the North American International Auto Show, a new job — our little co-prosperity sphere will be full up with things-that-aren’t-this. Oh, and the cherry on the sundae? We’re going to the Charity Preview next Friday, courtesy of the paper. And that is? A night of black-tie swellishness, the biggest benefit of the year, when everybody in town welcomes the auto show and raises jillions for children’s charities. My feet hurt just thinking about it.

I went to the dress department at one of the department stores after Christmas. Everything was on sale and the racks looked like they’d been looted. I tried on four dresses and hated them all — I didn’t wear a floor-length dress to my own wedding, for crying out loud. So I guess it’ll be a cocktail dress and I’ll spend a lot of time standing behind Cadillacs so no one knows I’m cheating.

Eh, it’ll be fine. Alan’s not wearing a tux. And once Aretha arrives, all eyes will be on her. That photo caption is wrong, by the way — that’s her longtime boyfriend, not her husband, although she announced this week they’re finally getting married this summer. A few years ago, they rolled into the Charity Preview in his-and-her white mink.

(A friend saw her shopping at Kroger a few years ago, in sable. Sable and a baseball cap.)

Oh, and guess what she said in the press release about the engagement? “No, I’m not pregnant.” Ha.

So, a quick skip to the bloggage?

I can’t stand shows like “Wife Swap,” but I’m sort of sorry I missed this one.

Newt Gingrich: Now I am become Death, destroyer of worlds. Maybe.

Eric Zorn echoes my call of a year or so back — leave the lights for a while after the holidays — although I gotta tell you, everything in and outside the house came down on Jan. 1. It was either take them down then, or they’d stay up until February. And I have to tell you, by February? You’re definitely in the lazy-bum camp.

And that’s it for me. Enjoy Thursday, when the world starts to smell distinctly of? Weekend!

Posted at 2:15 am in Uncategorized |

45 responses to “A new gear.”

  1. jerry said on January 5, 2012 at 3:41 am

    Here in our house the Christmas decorations came down promptly on January 1st – Christmas is over and it’s time to look forward to the New Year. Mark you, if I had my way (and being married I don’t necessarily), they wouldn’t go up until about December 20th. Personally I think Christmas goes on far too long and would enjoy it more if it was all concentrated into fewer days.

    376 chars

  2. alex said on January 5, 2012 at 6:41 am

    I’ve stopped using my outdoor lights though they’ve yet to come down. I wouldn’t think twice about using them well into January except that everyone in the neighborhood has had theirs up since October and some probably will still in March. As for indoors, haven’t decorated in decades and that’s not likely to change. I’m really not much of a Christmassy person.

    As for the Queen of Soul, she doesn’t look one-tenth as fetching as Buick’s new Riviera concept. Maybe I’ll get to own one someday when they’re as long in the tooth as the currently out-of-production Riviera. Or Aretha.

    As for Newt, if he can’t work toward the good of his own party, what makes anyone think he could work toward the good of his country? I suppose he has locked himself into at least one of his campaign promises. Wife number three will be the last. Because ain’t no one would have his ass.

    1283 chars

  3. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on January 5, 2012 at 6:43 am

    Dec. 6 – Feast of St. Nicholas, they go up; Jan. 6 – Epiphany, they come down. Works for me (he said as he types by the light of the pre-dawn tree).

    Here’s something I can’t believe I didn’t figure out for myself:


    336 chars

  4. Suzanne said on January 5, 2012 at 7:17 am

    My husband would love the Christmas stuff to go up on St. Nick day and come down on Epiphany but I don’t want to mess with it that long. I put less out every year, so I guess I must be getting old. Now, I understand that 4 foot aluminum tree my grandmother had.

    Alex @2–exactly. If Newt won’t work for the good of the party, he won’t work for the good of his country. I realize that anyone running for president has to have a huge ego, but his is over the top. If he’d so easily toss aside a wife and his fellow Repubs, think what he’d do to the country…

    Happy day yesterday when M. Bachmann stepped aside. It was fun to watch, until I started thinking that one of these people could actually be elected. Then, it just got scary.

    745 chars

  5. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on January 5, 2012 at 7:19 am

    By the way, Alex, did I remember to post that, yes, Christwire.com is a “stealth parody” site, akin to Colbert’s persona?

    121 chars

  6. alex said on January 5, 2012 at 7:40 am

    That’s Christwire.org, MMJeff. Not sure if you mentioned it was a stealth parody, although I think anyone reading it would figure that out. Especially the earnest.

    204 chars

  7. heydave said on January 5, 2012 at 7:58 am

    When I put up Xmas lights, they usually stay up well into the year, mostly to ward off that evil darkness thing. I also have string of lights in my kitchen all year long. I light them up when I’m having an “occasion” dinner, or just want to see pretty sparkly things. An old girlfriend taught me that, and I think of her when I turn them on. Uh, as it were. And no, I do not share this information with any new women in my life, so don’t tell!

    448 chars

  8. heydave said on January 5, 2012 at 8:00 am

    Oh yeah, gotta add one more comment. My son and I were driving in Minnesota when we gleefully heard Michelle Bachmann’s “concession” speech. 15 minutes without taking a breath! I seriously want a date with that woman.

    219 chars

  9. beb said on January 5, 2012 at 8:24 am

    Since we stopped putting up Christmas displays they’ve become a lot easier to take down.

    I’m surprised that only Michelle Bachmann dropped out of the campaign following Iowa. Of course Herman Cain already dropped out but I would have thought Rick Perry would have thrown in the towel by now. Jon Huntsman, I think, is waiting for his week of front-runnership once people realize that Ron Paul is like newt Gingrich only crazier.

    I was think how, in 2016 when the White House will be up for grabs, the GOP would be sending out their “A” team only to realize that I have no idea what they “A” team would look like. Anyone who has an ambition of the Presidency, it seems, is already running and of those who have sat this cycle, like Chris Christie, are as unelectable as those already running. Because of The Crazy I don’t think the GOP has an electable candidate anywhere.

    879 chars

  10. Julie Robinson said on January 5, 2012 at 8:48 am

    Perry suspended his campaign yesterday but reneged after Bachmann dropped out. After his “oops” at the debate, it’s only a matter of time.

    What I’m wondering is this: if Romney is the candidate, will Obama go after his Mormonism? After all the Muslim aspersions cast on Obama, I think he’ll be sensitive to the issue, but his advisors will push for it, especially if it becomes an ugly campaign. As I think it will.

    420 chars

  11. caliban said on January 5, 2012 at 9:03 am

    The full quote is “If the radiance of a thousand suns were to burst forth at once in the sky, that would be like the splendor of the Mighty One. I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds”. Oppenheimer was talking about Teller, and these dangerous bastards are sticking their heads up now. USA bombs Iran because Israel wants to be the only nuke state in the middle east. Well Israel got those nukes by spying on the USA and they stole the fissionable material. They also teamed up with the DeKlerks to pull off the heist. Really solid allies.

    Julie. Windsock Willard has already attacked Obama about Islam. Which is hilarious, when Moronism dates to a well-known grifter in the 19th Century. I mean, can there be a more ridiculous story than LDS

    756 chars

  12. caliban said on January 5, 2012 at 9:14 am

    and Mittens was born in Mehico.

    31 chars

  13. adrianne said on January 5, 2012 at 9:37 am

    I’m with Jeff, the mmo, – our lights, tree, etc. go up at the beginning of Advent and go down on the Feast of the Epiphany. It gives a liturgical flourish to the pagan rituals! Plus, we need light in this season of cold and dark.

    229 chars

  14. Scout said on January 5, 2012 at 10:05 am

    Typing by Christmas tree light as we speak. Without really planning it to be 12/6-1/6, that is how it timing-wise worked out this year. I have off tomorrow and my big plans are to de-Christmas.

    Announcing One-L-Michele’s exit from the race, Gawker referred to her as “the magical flightless wish bird willed into existence by thousands of liberal bloggers”. Indeed, she will be missed almost as much as Herman Cain.

    Nancy, enjoy the hoop-de-doo. Sounds like fun even though I really hate formal wear.

    508 chars

  15. Judybusy said on January 5, 2012 at 10:31 am

    Jeff TMMO, thanks for the laughs; too bad it isn’t true.

    We leave multicolored lights up permanently inside our porch, and use them in the summer time when we eat out there.

    My partner’s in nursing school and working half-time, so we haven’t done decorations for a bit. We don’t know if we will begin again once she’s done. We find ourselves less enthused about Christmas as time goes on; neither of us are believers, but like the decorations, food and getting together with friends and family.

    Nancy,the gala sounds like a blast. I hope you two can enjoy it!

    568 chars

  16. Dorothy said on January 5, 2012 at 10:36 am

    I’m with you, Jerry.

    Nancy we had a black-tie optional event on campus in October and most women, including me, did not wear a to-the-floor gown. And about 1/3 of the guys wore tuxes – the rest were in suits. Then again this is Gambier OH, not the Charity Preview in Detroit.

    282 chars

  17. Heather said on January 5, 2012 at 10:51 am

    I took the ornaments and lights off the tree before figuring out that I couldn’t take the tree to the park for recycling until this Saturday–oh well. I still have the wreaths up and some lights in the windows. I like the idea of keeping everything up until the 6th, but as Epiphany isn’t really celebrated or even acknowledged on these shores, unlike in Spain or Italy, for example, it seems sort of artificial.

    Nancy, regarding the dress, I always tell my styling clients it’s worth it to keep your eye out for something you love whether you have an event coming up or not–when the pressure’s on, it’s always harder to find something great. Anyway, I am sure you will look terrific.

    688 chars

  18. Kirk said on January 5, 2012 at 10:56 am

    Over the past few years, my sister has become obsessed with taking down and stowing all evidence of Christmas before she goes to bed on Christmas night. I don’t get it; our family always has had wonderful Christmases.

    Our stuff went up two weeks before the big weekend this year and is still up. Might come down this weekend, but it would be a largely solo effort, as I have to work.

    387 chars

  19. Peter said on January 5, 2012 at 11:10 am

    It’s Epiphany for us – especially because my Dad, Gaspar, is named after one of the three wise men, so we’ve had a long tradition of having a nice birthday meal for him, then boxing up the decorations and hauling the tree to the curb (except now we bag the artificial tree and haul it to the basement).

    302 chars

  20. Jolene said on January 5, 2012 at 11:21 am

    Wow, Kirk. In my family, part of the pleasure of Christmas decorations is enjoying them quietly after the flurry of preparations and the actual celebration. Your sister needs to loosen up.

    188 chars

  21. alex said on January 5, 2012 at 11:24 am

    …if Romney is the candidate, will Obama go after his Mormonism?

    Don’t bet on it. It would cost Obama respect with voters he needs and it certainly wouldn’t make any Mormon-haters change their party affiliation from Republican to Democrat. Now, if Democratic operatives not connected to Obama fan the flames of anti-Mormonism in order to keep other Republican voters home in November, that’s a scenario within the realm of possibility.

    447 chars

  22. Ann said on January 5, 2012 at 11:27 am

    My mother, age 87, is also shopping this week for a formal dress. Her occasion is being asked to give the “immortal memory” speech at a Burns supper later this month. As the daughter of Presbyterian missionaries, she has the Scottish part down, but will be drinking seltzer for the toasts. Since I can’t remember the last time she shopped for clothes for herself I was a little surprised until she added the detail that of course she’ll be doing her shopping at the thrift store.

    482 chars

  23. LAMary said on January 5, 2012 at 11:28 am

    Peter, your dad and I share a birthday and luckily I wasn’t named Melchior or Balthazar. I did get a middle name from the sister who died in Little Women, which I always found a little depressing.
    We haven’t decorated at all for a couple of years. One exception. I have a clear plastic tree about six inches tall that plugs into the usb port on my laptop. It changes colors.

    375 chars

  24. Kim said on January 5, 2012 at 12:21 pm

    I had a black-tie thing to attend recently and had zero time or interest to look for something to wear, so I looked in my costume trunk and found a gold and black knit cocktail dress from the 50s that I last wore to a college roommate’s wedding in the early 1980s. It was either that or the hot pink bridesmaid dress from my sister’s wedding (mid-1980s poof sleeves, sweetheart neckline and tea-length mushroom hem) and I reserve that special dress for all my sister’s special occasions – birthdays, anniversaries, first marathons.

    531 chars

  25. moe99 said on January 5, 2012 at 12:25 pm


    A little bit of color just left Kentucky. He was a year behind me in law school and his exploits were legion back then. One time he showed up for a final exam in the wrong section of the class–he hadn’t attended all semester and forgot who his professor was.

    378 chars

  26. caliban said on January 5, 2012 at 1:05 pm

    Mittens was born in Mehico. All she wrote. And he’s a spectacular jerk.

    71 chars

  27. caliban said on January 5, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Why would anybody qustion Moronism? Any religion that requires strapping the Irish Setter on the car roof must be all right. What an ahole.

    139 chars

  28. beb said on January 5, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    I was in the middle of a long post on how Willard Romney’s religion will play in any election but Windows 7’s “clever” shortcuts ate Firefox. Basically there are wide swaths of area where the President can hammer Romney without touching on his religion. It’s a bit personal going after a man’s beliefs (or his sacred briefs).

    325 chars

  29. DellaDash said on January 5, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    Gary Busey was maybe quirky when he so brilliantly channeled Buddy Holly, but he didn’t really go ‘off’ until after his head injury from a motorcycle accident caused the lack of helmet laws to become a national issue du jour. An unsavory encounter at an art gallery event in Santa Monica about a year later, between him and a good friend of mine; was especially memorable 20-odd years down the road when the dire consequences of refusal by all Jamaican bikemen, including my deceased husband, to cushion their oft-rum-addled skulls with anything more than dreadlocks shoved up into colorful woolen tams, became painfully apparent.

    630 chars

  30. moe99 said on January 5, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    Caliban do you have any proof that Romney was born in Mexico?

    61 chars

  31. Jolene said on January 5, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    It was George Romney, Mitt’s father, who was born in Mexico.


    121 chars

  32. Bitter Scribe said on January 5, 2012 at 2:05 pm

    There are a lot of purity trolls who are bitching and moaning about how Obama disappointed them about this or that. But I think the man still has a solid core of principles, and that those principles preclude him from attacking someone else’s religion.

    Not even Mitt’s most rabidly Christianist opponents dared do so directly. The closest they got was proxy attacks, like that fool Rev. Jeffries or whatever his name is on behalf of Perry. And Perry caught considerable flak for that.

    Anyone who is foolish enough to reject Romney on religious grounds (as opposed to, say, his being a complete weasel) does not need encouragement in that regard from Obama or anyone else.

    677 chars

  33. brian stouder said on January 5, 2012 at 2:35 pm

    the Washington Post has a lengthy article about the Romney’s of Mexico; very interesting stuff, but not what Caliban is saying. (and there’s still many Romneys down there)

    It could make for a funny ad at some point; Romney’s family roots were illegal immigrants SOUTH of the border! (and the “magnet” was “plural marriage”)

    Aside from that, I hope that at Saturday’s debate someone thinks to ask the assembled “small government” crowd about the government’s role (if any) in worker safety or environmental stewardship or nuclear safety or the effects of “drill baby drill” or….

    (from today’s Chem-Info, an interesting trade publication)

    PHOTOS OF THE DAY: Landslide Kills 25, Buries More at Gold Mining Site (from the Phillipines)

    Chlorine Bleach Leak Leads to Alert at Nuclear Plant…
    Operators of the Prairie Island nuclear power plant near Red Wing issued an alert early Thursday after workers discovered chlorine bleach leaking from a tank
    (from Minnesota)

    Tanker Collision Triggers Oil Spill. Singapore’s port authority says two tankers collided off the city-state’s coast, triggering a small fuel oil spill

    Nope. All guhmint ever does is KILL JOBS!

    1216 chars

  34. Jolene said on January 5, 2012 at 2:48 pm

    Brian, you bring up a topic that I think about a lot. When I hear GOPers ranting about job-killing regulations or, especially, EPA overreach, I want to say, “Don’t Republicans have grandchildren?” if people were logical, conservatives would be leading the nation’s environmental organizations, but current American conservatism seems to be only about conserving the power of rich people and corporations and the social customs of past generations.

    447 chars

  35. alex said on January 5, 2012 at 2:50 pm

    Bitter Scribe, it should be noted that our frothy fecal friend may not have done so yet during this primary season, but he’s on the record bashing Mormons in 2007 albeit in sort of a politically slick way.

    I think this has gone unnoticed because so many of his other statements are so much worse.

    438 chars

  36. caliban said on January 5, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    As usual, I was just making fun. But I’ll go on record as saying that magic underpants and the BYU honor code are seriously bizarre and grotessQuely unAmerican.

    160 chars

  37. Suzanne said on January 5, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    I have a close relative (Lutheran–LCMS) who always refers to Mormonism as a cult. I think she forgets that Christianity would have been called that as well, back in the day.

    175 chars

  38. beb said on January 5, 2012 at 4:43 pm

    I still think Christianity is a cult…

    39 chars

  39. Bitter Scribe said on January 5, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    As someone once said, a cult is a religion with little political influence.

    So if Mittens is elected (shudder), I guess that means the transition for Mormonism to religion will be complete.

    192 chars

  40. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on January 5, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    Ann, congratulations to your mom – that’s no small honor, and a wee guid dram will nae hurt her vocal cords, I’ll be bound. No Burns Night dinner nearby, but I’ll hoist a toast to Tam O’Shanter the evening of the 25th.

    218 chars

  41. paddyo' said on January 5, 2012 at 6:35 pm

    Moe99 @ 25 — Wow, what a great obit! The lede alone is priceless: “. . . perennial candidate who won many hearts but never enough votes . . .”

    I’d never heard of “Gatewood” before now, but besides enlivening the political process in KY, he did something we all ought to aspire to: Be so well-known and sanguine in your community that they need use only your first name throughout most of your obit . . .

    414 chars

  42. MichaelG said on January 5, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    Thank you, Moe. A well written obit and a well lived life.

    59 chars

  43. alex said on January 5, 2012 at 9:49 pm

    Don’t Republicans have grandchildren?

    Actually, the Republicans are fed apocalyptic bullshit invoking their grandchildren all the time, so they feel none about environmental pollution. They’re agitated about federal taxation and the world of sexual liberty that awaits the future generations. While touching themselves and moaning.

    343 chars

  44. Tim Z, said on January 5, 2012 at 10:19 pm

    Aretha’s fabulous, even though her voice isn’t what it was in the 60s. But judging from Chrysler’s great Super Bowl commercial, Eminem’s the voice of Detroit now. The Chrysler spot that spun off from that commercial is the only one on TV that I’ll make it a point to watch.

    273 chars

  45. Buffalo Savage said on January 6, 2012 at 12:14 pm

    comments to wrong post sorry

    28 chars