Brothers and sisters, I have spent too many days stuck inside through these early fall days, staring at a computer screen. And the reason I know this is, I finally took a break and got out for a bike ride of decent length on Saturday. And it? Was glorious.
In fact, it was so glorious that it persuaded me to redouble my efforts to get some things back into boxes, and try to restore something like sanity to my day. Work in one box, exercise in another, blogging in another, extracurricular writing in yet another. And more goddamn exercise, because it makes everything better.
Two months ago, I was getting up at 6 to ride to the pool and swim laps. Now I’m lucky to drag my ass out of bed by 7, and little exercise follows. Must. Show. Discipline. Fall is such a dangerous time, in many ways. Not all the changes of the new year are good ones.
So, in the interest of keeping things short, how about a quick few links, and then I can go do some butt crunches or something:
The Columbus Dispatch is generally a very conservative newspaper, but their polling generally has a good track record, and they spend the money to do it right. Something to remember when you see they have Obama up by 9 points (in Ohio), as early voting gets under way.
A column about the NFL refs’ lockout, and what lessons might be learned by American labor. Something I haven’t read yet, and enjoyed.
Our own MMJeff tries a little fun in his weekend column: Did Jesus own a dog?
Anonymity in political fundraising: One cautionary tale. (Link fixed.)
We now return you to October, already in progress. October! Already!
Dave said on October 1, 2012 at 1:10 am
Nancy, the “Cautionary Tale” link leads us back to Jeff’s dog speculation.
Deborah said on October 1, 2012 at 3:15 am
Exercise is good. I’m obsessed with walking. On days when I can’t, for whatever reason, I feel weird.
This is it, my last week of work. Tuesday evening my studio is having an open house for me, the entire office is invited. I’m a little freaked out by that, I was hoping to quietly slink out of there. I’ll have to bring a box of Kleenex. Friday afternoon at 4:30 I have a scheduled exit interview so that means I have to stick out the whole day. Then Saturday we’re off to Santa Fe where I’ll stay until after Thanksgiving.
jcburns said on October 1, 2012 at 3:20 am
Looking forward to MMJeff’s next exploration, “Did Jesus own an iPod?”
Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 1, 2012 at 6:37 am
Each time my editor changes, I’m fascinated to see what they do differently. The text as sent had Dr. Ferb Forster and Prof. Kibble Conway as the two antagonists, and the honorific Dr. was simply stripped, and Prof. is variously treated as you see in the piece (and two other finicky alterations which are neither here nor there). I gather there are stylebook issues in play, but I’m tempted to contact my newest green-visored overlord and ask “you did know this was satire, right?”
To be fair, my last one terrifyingly put my columns in *exactly* as I e-mailed them, so I learned that I needed to remember before hitting send “triple-check, bucko.” So I may have just forgotten what it is to be edited, which when done well is a gift and a joy to a writer.
Linda said on October 1, 2012 at 6:51 am
Exercise is good for the body and mind. I get my best ideas at the gym, when I don’t get them in the shower. I find it interesting that we respect medical interventions, like pills and surgery, but have a slight contempt for health maintenance that you can do yourself, like exercise. We would be aghast if someone didn’t take their prescription meds to have a few bucks, but “perfectly understand” why someone doesn’t take the time to exercise, and even consider a strong exercise schedule to be a bit self-indulgent. But this country needs more preventative self-care. And as my cardiac doc says, “exercise is the best medicine.”
Suzanne said on October 1, 2012 at 7:19 am
I find the hub-bub about the NFL sub referees interesting as I worked as a temp at a company for several months a few years ago. Probably a third of the staff were temps who, we were almost all willing to admit, did not have any idea what we were doing. Funny to me how business is supposed to be the answer to all society’s woes, and temps are seen as cost effective and an efficient way to do business, until this referee problem which showed that not every job is simple enough for someone to step into untrained and untried. But I have been telling people that since my temp gig ended.
David C. said on October 1, 2012 at 7:37 am
I always have a hard time keeping up my exercise during the winter. My favorite exercise is cycling. Thanks to the unusually warm weather in March I got an early start and have 800+ miles in this season. Even though I set the bike up on a trainer during the off season, I have to force myself to go down and pedal. It just lacks the “let’s see what’s down this street” factor that keeps it interesting for me. I’ll have to join the Y this winter and see if that helps.
basset said on October 1, 2012 at 7:58 am
Exercise quit being fun when I got too old and stove up to play basketball. I do not understand how anyone can enjoy running… I have to make myself get on the treadmill or the stationary bike, and all too often I don’t at the end of a tough day. Riding the street bike, well, maybe, but the next time I hear “outa the way, fatass!” I am going to hurt someone.
beb said on October 1, 2012 at 8:17 am
The NFL referee lockout has nothing to tell other unions because their situation was unique. In most strikes or lockouts the owners control the airwaves. Labor has little chance to advance their side and people don’t see what they do. With the referees, though, their work is entirely out in the open and when inferior substitutes are brought in the whole nation can plainly see that they are clowns. The nation as a whole protests the inferior product the owners are trying to foist off on them, pressuring the owners to settle on terms favorable to the union. Most of the time we only hear how auto workers or hotel maids are “unskilled” labor making incomes far in excess of what they real do.
Judybusy said on October 1, 2012 at 8:42 am
Jeff, loved the column, and the picture of the dog right along Jesus as he walked on water. The only quibble I have is that I really think Jesus would have pulled juice to have the dog trotting along beside him, and not swimmming.
Dave C, have you ever tried spin classes? I’ve found they are a fun way to keep pedaling during the winter. Bonus: your butt’s in shape the first day of outside riding!
Deborah: Exit interview at 4:30? Did you just roll with it or ask for one, say, around 11:00? I really think it’s a crappy thing to do, but you know the person….
LAMary said on October 1, 2012 at 8:59 am
I find it hard to exercise in the summer, at least in the part of the LA summer that has temperatures in three digits. It’s been like that most of the last six weeks. We had a brief break last week but we’re back in the stew again. The prediction for today is 100 in downtown LA and 106 for Burbank, where I work.
Joe K said on October 1, 2012 at 9:18 am
Are you anywhere near where the big fire was Sunday morning? I flew over it around 3:30am it was spectacular from the air. I was at 6000ft and climbing.
Bassett just finished a nice 6.5 mile run, now getting on the bike for a 10 mile. It’s beautiful in Auburn in today.
Deborah said on October 1, 2012 at 9:45 am
Not really close to me Joe, about 3 miles away, I’d say.
Scout said on October 1, 2012 at 10:01 am
Deborah, this is undoubtably going to be a bittersweet week for you. Leaving for Santa Fe at the end of it will hopefully be helpful. I am looking forward to my exit from work life. It should be about 10 years from right now since I’m 55 today. I officially qualify for ‘senior’ status at Fry’s and my favorite thrift store! Anyway, ten years from now I hope to be reporting that I am heading towards a fabulous retirement in Sedona.
brian stouder said on October 1, 2012 at 10:11 am
Happy Birthday, Scout! And – an early Happy Birthday to MichaelG, too!
Dorothy said on October 1, 2012 at 10:14 am
Happy birthday Scout! I’m 32 days older than you are, or something like that. I too would love to be looking forward to retiring in ten years. Or sooner if we can work something out. I am very much looking forward to some great trips, a different one for each of the upcoming 3 months. We’re headed to a nephew’s wedding in Tampa mid-way through October, then to Norfolk to see our daughter for Thanksgiving. Then the big wedding (our son’s) in Vegas right after Christmas. I am like a little kid, laying awake some nights with big eyes, wondering how it’s all going to go.
MichaelG said on October 1, 2012 at 10:19 am
An exit interview for a retiree? At 4:30 on a Friday afternoon? What kind of people are they? Maybe it’s some kind of ruse to get you to a surprise party.
The refs are a unique case. There are very few of them compared to members in other trades. Their cost and the cost of any raises is piddling and will pose no hardship for a very wealthy employer that is simply coining bucks. Another thing is that they all have day jobs so they don’t need the ref job to eat That factor leaves the NFL with little leverage.
It has been warm, Mary. We just set a record with 26 days over ninety during September. It’s supposed to hit trippple digits here in Sacto today too. Yesterday I stood on my front porch in a ninety plus afternoon and watched leaves falling from the trees.
MichaelG said on October 1, 2012 at 10:20 am
Connie said on October 1, 2012 at 10:23 am
Jeff(tmmo) as a librarian I really love this line: Published first in the Journal of Occasional Studies, a twice-annual periodical found in all the libraries to which it is sent.
Sue said on October 1, 2012 at 10:38 am
MMJeff, I’m surprised at you, minister and scholar. Of course Jesus didn’t have a dog. There is a whole section of quotes in the Gospel of Thomas complaining about how he’d like a dog but his wife is a cat person.
Catherine said on October 1, 2012 at 10:52 am
I’m working on a project like Jeff’s right now which is unfortunately *not* parody: it asks what Abraham Lincoln would have thought and how he would have acted WRT some of the big issues that came after him, like women’s suffrage and the bombing of Hiroshima. It’s an interesting thought exercise until it starts to feel futile and makes me mad. The case I just read suggested that he would have suspended civil rights in exactly the way Bush did after 9/11, based on the fact that Lincoln suspended habeas corpus after Ft. Sumter mainly to go after rebellious groups in Maryland. Lincoln experts here, thoughts?
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 11:12 am
Of course Jesus had a dog, and Jesus’ dog was a collie. Jesus was a shepherd, after all. This is well-documented in the autobiographical work Imitation of Lad, a Dog. Very funny Jeff. Oh, and Bedouins bred Saluki hunting dogs long befor Jesus was born man, but they would probably have been a problem around sheep.
An exit interview for a retiree? At 4:30 on a Friday afternoon? What kind of people are they? Maybe it’s some kind of ruse to get you to a surprise party.
Involves brewskis and canapes, I imagine, or who’d not bolt early?
The thing about the referee situation that bugs me is that “lockouts” are specifically illegal in the USA, yet sports owners pull this crap repeatedly and get away with it. The NHL owners have the players locked out at this moment. Of course, hockey players can go to Europe to play for large money and perks like sportscars and apartments. Rank and file unions probably have little to learn from the zebra union, but the whole situation was no less thuggish, knee-jerk reflexize union busting. Those rich guys were putting ’em on the table and measuring. Dicks. I suppose nobody suffered but two-bit sports books.
Anonymity and political fundraising: During the 2008 Presidential election, when the US Chamber of Commerce was pumping vast amounts into the McCain/$Palin Wagon Queen Family Truckster, much of it from overseas, the GOPer response to criticism was “Well the unions do it too.” A good riposte, but a fabrication. A database of union contributions was mmaintained for months, and this information was available from beginning to end of the campaign. Of course, now, it doesn’t matter where the money comes from, since Scalito said money is speech and the Constitution brooks no limitation on throwing it around, in other people’s states and even other people’s countries. I’ll bet Don Blankenship wishes he’d remained anonymous when he bought the WVSC judge for a pet and took him on Mediterranean vacation.
Happy birthday Scout and Michael G.
Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 1, 2012 at 11:24 am
Lincoln would have unsheathed his mystic silver axe and had himself parachuted into the royal compound of Kyoto where he would have slaughtered, without hesitation, the ghoulish undead vampire generals of the inner cabinet, forcing Emperor Hirohito to truly see what they have done to his country — then, in an amazing plot twist, would have boarded a specially outfitted B-26 to take him back to Los Alamos, where he would have had a final standoff on the brink of Valles Caldera with the spectral shade that had been masquerading as Oppenheimer . . . he revealed his true nature in that slip at the Trinity detonation, when he whispered audibly that he had become “Shiva the destroyer.”
Women, dunno. Mary Todd couldn’t have done much to convince him that was a good idea to let ’em vote.
Catherine said on October 1, 2012 at 11:34 am
You know… that makes so much sense. Do you have time to do a couple pages of the screenplay?
brian stouder said on October 1, 2012 at 11:34 am
Objection! Point of Order!
In Mary’s defense – living with Abe could not have been a bowl of cherries.
(I love ol’ Mary, and she gets a very bad press. She was declared “insane” because she bought things she didn’t need…!! She was simply a typical American consumer – ahead of her time!)
Now that my finger has been pulled, I’ll have more to say later – but here’s the spoiler: I’ve always liked his remark (was it in a State of the Union witten address?) where he says something like “as our problems are new, we must think anew and act anew” – and he has some riff in there about disenthralling ourselves from the quiet past… and then his plain admission that he didn’t control events, but that events controlled him. That’s the big clue that he was an enormously intelligent pragmatist, I think
Sue said on October 1, 2012 at 11:35 am
Catherine, is this thought experiment based on the question of how Lincoln would have handled subsequent issues based only on what he thought/the man he was in 1865, or based on his having the magical opportunity to learn from history (thus not repeating it in the case of, say, a habeas corpus decision)?
Because if the magical history review is the case, MMJeff could certainly counter Mary Lincoln with Eleanor Roosevelt.
brian stouder said on October 1, 2012 at 11:39 am
(the “events controlled me” remark was not in an address – but was a fragment in his notes)
crinoidgirl said on October 1, 2012 at 11:46 am
I saw a giant upward plume of black smoke and a very long trailing plume on the way to work in Ann Arbor today. In the general direction of Chicago. I think I saw the remnants of that fire!
crinoidgirl said on October 1, 2012 at 11:49 am
Oh, and happy birthdays, on time and ahead of time, to Scout and MichaelG.
Catherine said on October 1, 2012 at 12:08 pm
Sue, I think it’s more based on Lincoln ca. 1865 than Lincoln having had a chance to learn from history. As someone said about gay marriage, there’s no way at all to predict that, as he would have been completely agog at the idea. So you think Eleanor might have swayed him?
Sue said on October 1, 2012 at 12:26 pm
Catherine, as far as post-Lincoln first ladies, he could have been swayed by Eleanor, also Lou Hoover. Hillary Clinton, too. But if we’re talking about a Lincoln frozen in time, they might have been more threatening to his idea of a deserving female than not.
That’s the problem, the wall women run up against: we can’t be trusted with the vote/the job/the bankbook because we’re not whole enough or we can’t be trusted because we might not safely handle our own power. Covers the whole spectrum.
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 12:32 pm
California makes “pray away the gay” and other so-called reparative or conversion therapies illegal. Well, no shit. Dogass junk science and unChristian. In fact, it’s a long con and has no actual end but stealing money. How long will it be before some asshole like Ayn Ryan calls this “an assault on religious freedom”? Parbly happened already.
California has also implemented some aspects of a plan to effect President Obama’s deferred action policy for DREAMERS. Damn, sanity in state government. Forgot what that looked like.
Catherine @30: A perfect explanation why NRA and anti-gun law judges that claim they know what the 2nd Amendment entails by straight reading (while ignoring the initial limiting clause conveniently) are full of it. Founding fathers weren’t thinking about AKs and Mac-10s and 40 round ammo clips.
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 12:54 pm
Scout said on October 1, 2012 at 1:00 pm
Thanks for the nice birthday wishes, all. And let me get on the record as having wished Michael G an early happy birthday, but hopefully he’ll remind us when the day actually arrives!
Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 1, 2012 at 1:15 pm
My religious tradition’s primary icon, a fellow named Alexander Campbell, was one of those early 19th century fellows of whom it could be said he never had an unpublished thought. The fact that he married into money, leveraged the resources well (he brought Merino sheep to America to his great enrichment, among other things), and lived in a geographically handy place to co-opt a postmaster gig into a postage-free direct mail empire meant that his printing press purchase was not an indulgence, but a clever use of the best technology of his time.
My point, such as it is, is that in the disputes between the fractious members of my so-called communion or movement today (Churches of Christ a capella, independent Christian Churches, and the Disciples of Christ aka “them liberals”) you can find an Alexander Campbell quote for ANYTHING. To the point that one can wonder why bother quoting the man at all.
Early in his career as a religious reformer, he said clergy should not be paid at all; late in life, that they should be paid enough to not have to work a farm, and to have a home nice enough to host guests. Early in his career he was borderline pacifist and anti-war, later he trumpeted paeans to soldiery and martial training. At first, Campbell was clearly anti-slavery and as pro-separation between church and state as was his mentor and admirer James Madison, but at the end of his life as the Civil War raged, he still resisted calls for emancipation and refused to condemn slaveholding for Christians or even clergy, while asking that the government do more to promote days of prayer and fasting (of which Abe was a regular declarer).
So I come naturally to my revulsion at any modern-day attempt to look at a revered figure from the past and try to make them speak to current events. Which Campbell? At which stage of his writing & thought, and to which direction?
But a time-slipping romance between Abraham Lincoln & Eleanor Roosevelt . . . now THERE’S a screenplay.
Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 1, 2012 at 1:18 pm
Oh, and Campbell was a wild-eyed liberal and borderline suffrage supporter in his youth (Bethany College in 1840 accepted women upon opening, a very controversial choice he defended with great asperity and wit), but as he aged, and with the leaning of his second wife’s more conservative nature (she was selected for him by his first wife on her deathbed), he comes across in his last decade like a modern day social conservative and then some, with women’s natural place of governance being at the hearth, etc.
Charlotte said on October 1, 2012 at 1:35 pm
Oh the exercise thing! It’s been such a bummer this summer — I’ve been stuck on the basement treadmill because it’s been too too hot and dry and horrible to hike outside (also, smoky). Plus, my dogs are now too crippled to go with me, and it feels weird and unpleasant to walk without them … A few gorgeous days in the 70s, then supposed to rain/snow tomorrow (please, she begs the heavens). I’ve been glad of my cheapo used treadmill because it means I can actually get some exercise when it’s too hot, too cold, too windy, too crappy outside, but jeeze does it feel like an exercise in futility. However, my waistline does not view it as such, so, tread tread tread …
Jolene said on October 1, 2012 at 1:43 pm
Tip for TV-watching tonight: PBS is broadcasting Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide. This is part of a big multi-media push initiated by Nick Kristof and Cheryl WuDunn, who wrote a book by that name, to draw attention to the status of women and girls throughout the world and to efforts to improve their circumstances.
I just read that IKEA had zapped all images of women from marketing materials to be used in Saudi Arabia to conform to “local sensitivities. Might be nice to see some hopeful examples of change, as it doesn’t seem like the need for it will be overcome any time soon.
deb said on October 1, 2012 at 1:46 pm
Sue @20: Found myself looking for the “like” button after reading that one.
Scout said on October 1, 2012 at 2:07 pm
deb@39 – me too.
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 2:13 pm
My first Justin Bieber song ever. Big question, aside from how does anybody listen to this fracking noxious drivel: How does he keep singing while he’s yorking his guts up and running off the stage? Does that make him Mili or Vanilli?
Selling IKEA at the Souk sounds like a good name for a bouk.
Something god for indoor exercise days
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 2:17 pm
What I was meaning to say was Something good for indoor exercising: Got remastered copies of a bunch of Beatles albums that are supposed to have “making of…” videos as extras. The sound on these is terrific and the Cardboard packaging and accompanying booklets are very nicely done, and contain things like original liner notes. Bought Abbey Lane, Rubber Soul, Hard Day’s Night, Help and Yellow Submarine. Very nice.
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 2:18 pm
Abbey Road, of course. Abbe Lane is a jazz singer of note. Must go outside for a bike ride.
Dexter said on October 1, 2012 at 2:18 pm
I have been dog-walking in two parks already, one a little park alongside the Tiffin River near Stryker, then I went to check one more time on “my” apple tree in the city park here. My gawd, I have never seen it like this; about seventy apples freshly fallen onto the grass, easy pickings, and I took twenty-five and left the rest for any stroller who may need a taste , or the deer can have them.
In my drinking days, many years ago, I had the reputation as being the second fastest beer drinker with the largest capacity for suds in DeKalb County, Indiana. Now, I think I may be the number one consumer of apples in this county I now live in…all thanks to one magic apple tree that has yielded hundreds of apples since the first week in September.
Exercise report: twenty five waist-bends to the ground to pick up apples, about a mile and three-quarters walk, and as soon as I listen to a couple more New Orleans YouTubes , a nice long bicycle ride, comin’ up.
For being such a great show, “Treme” just doesn’t grab folks I know like it does me. I have a friend in Connecticut, a former jazz producer of records, and even he doesn’t dig it. Well, for everyone who watches The Kardashians and Big Brother and Jersey Shore and all that shit, I don’t dig your stupid shows, either, so we’re even.
Last night, Antoine was playing this when one of his star pupils walked into Antoine’s classroom and learned a lesson. I learned a lesson, to…I didn’t know Papa Celestin before…now thanks to “Treme” and YouTube, I do.
Judybusy said on October 1, 2012 at 2:23 pm
Happiest of days, Scout, and Michael G to come…
Today is my sister’s birthday, and, I found out at the dog park, the birthday of a new-ish friend. To celebrate, she was giving away packets of hyacinth bean seeds. They have the best Latin name: Dolichos lablab.I may not remember much, but I knew that immediately when she handed me the seeds!
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 2:29 pm
Excellent Obama Ad by Samuel L. Jackson.
Danny said on October 1, 2012 at 2:31 pm
Proud of you, Nance! Was I any inspiration to you in the swimming and biking? Although my schedule is more cluttered than ever, I am still pretty dedicated and try to find times in between to poach a workout.
Charlotte said on October 1, 2012 at 3:43 pm
Jolene @38 — my Big Corporation did that a couple of years ago on user guides for a phone product — SO annoying. And we didn’t just do them for the Arabic localization — replaced all the images of women with images of men. Ugh. But as a lowly contractor, I had no pushback …
brian stouder said on October 1, 2012 at 3:45 pm
I think Lincoln was always a consummate politician (or “trimmer”, as a critic might say); he always wanted to know what people were saying, and what the national mood was – and he always had a firm grasp of what the trends were. Plus, he was a reader and a thinker, and he knew what he believed was right or wrong, and he would work for the practical advancement of what he believed was right.
Candidate Lincoln would make a speech – such as the House Divided speech – on a very large issue, and his political friends would think he had badly stumbled. But he had a knack for judging where events were headed, and then working ahead of them, so that events (seemingly) came to him.
Seward of New York did the same thing, but his antebellum “irrepressible conflict” talk scared everyone, whereas Lincoln’s “House Divided” speech only really scared the secessionist people (sorta like an application of selective herbicide, as opposed to a burn-down herbicide)
I think President Obama is successfully surfing the wave regarding marriage equality (for example) in much the same way President Lincoln was just beginning to surf the wave to enfranchise returning Union soldiers who were black, when he was murdered.
By way of saying, in the long run, if there’s a political question of right versus wrong, always bet on Lincoln
Sherri said on October 1, 2012 at 4:37 pm
More hedge-fund whiners: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2012/10/08/121008fa_fact_freeland?currentPage=all
What I want to know is, since when did hedge fund managers become builders and makers and job creators? Finance guys like Cooperman make their billions by moving other people’s money from place to place and charging them two and twenty for the privilege (and enjoying a ridiculous tax loophole that lets that twenty be capital gains instead of the ordinary income it ought to be.) Cooperman complains that Obama never worked a day in his life, never built anything; what did Cooperman build? Mark Zuckerberg, while I may not trust him, at least created something to make his billions. Cooperman just leaches off of people like Zuckerberg.
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 5:45 pm
Tell you something, Sherri, one of my brothers is a PU grad that was second in his class at UVA law. No doubt my brother Chris is top o’ the line corporate lawyer shitheads. I can say for a fact he had a gigunda RFK poster over his bed most of his hildhood. I’ll also guarantee he acts like a worthwhile human when that is called for. Everyone knew the valedictorian was a suckup asshole. My brother Chris used to be an astounding athlete. I mean, my family, we were all good, but Chris was ridiculous. Dave, best football player, best swimmer, Mark, Best runner, me no doubt (every distance from 60 to one mile.) Now Chris and Dave are Romney elite and Mark and I aren’t. Because of erratic behavior and my undeniable drinking, my dad put what he left me in the hands of a trust, with two of my brothers as trustees. My dad had a naive belief in his sons. One of my trustees is the brother who’s life I saved when his skull was split when he was a kid going to his first dance. So is Mark a trustworthy trustee.
I’m just finishing a strange book by JG Ballard. It’s about Middle Class People just giving up and saying fuckYou. Not fuckit, fuckyou.
Little Bird said on October 1, 2012 at 6:07 pm
Found this today. I despise current pop music, but this is a great reworking!
Deborah said on October 1, 2012 at 6:41 pm
Happy birthday Scout and MichaelG.
Some of you have questioned an exit interview and so did I. They explained it that they want me to tell them what I think about the company and how it operates in my area of expertise, or something like that. They have me slaving away brainstorming for a project in Columbus, OH. Of course I won’t get very far with only 4 more days to go. It’s in the area called Short North. It’s kind of fun but hard to concentrate at this point in my career.
Deborah said on October 1, 2012 at 6:46 pm
Only 32 more official work hours.
Jolene said on October 1, 2012 at 7:12 pm
Dexter, why not take a wheelbarrow, bring all the apples home, and cook up apple sauce, apple butter, and whatever else you like? Maybe freeze some pies. Shouldn’t the deer be out in the woods eating whatever they eat when they’re not chomping on people’s gardens?
Jolene said on October 1, 2012 at 7:32 pm
Two pieces on the MacArthur genius grants awarded today: anAP story that lists all the winners and a WaPo story that describes the work of the two DC writers–David Finkel and Dinaw Mengestu–who were among the winners.
Joe K said on October 1, 2012 at 8:18 pm
This guys a democrat!
Sherri said on October 1, 2012 at 8:39 pm
Correction, Joe K, Pat Caddell used to be a Democrat. He hasn’t actually been a Democrat for a long time.
coozledad said on October 1, 2012 at 8:49 pm
He’s a “former democrat’ for hire. That was a lucrative business for grifters at the dawn of the age of AFP and Fox news, but the schtick is getting old. You’ve got to have another angle, like “former NPR liberal”, or “former terrorist who done come to Jesus”. That one is fleecing the stupids for all they’re worth these days.
I would say the next iteration would be “former mideast dictator adopted by Bush family”, but damn if that one hasn’t been done to death already.
Catherine said on October 1, 2012 at 9:13 pm
Brian, I appreciate the portrait you paint of Lincoln as having a strong moral center while being pragmatic and “letting events come to him.” That’s, I think, why nuking Hiroshima is such a tough one. Do you let a bunch of people die horrific, lingering deaths, not to mention unleashing nuclear weapons on the world as a whole, to stop a war and perhaps/probably save many, many lives? I keep thinking of the point at the end of the Civil War where Lincoln kept peace representatives from the Confederacy at bay, so as to get the 13th amendment passed in the House. How many soldiers lost their lives during that time, and how did he justify that to himself?
Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on October 1, 2012 at 9:43 pm
Huzzah for the Short North, a place that I often imagine I’d like to go but get there about once every two years. Gallery Hop was their chief claim to fame for a very long time, but the street life and food carts and Northside Market and adjoining Arena District have helped it reach full yuppification. It’s one of Columbus’ usual things to point at after we’ve noted Nancy’s cows up on the northwest corner of the city on the OSU campus. Galleries, wine bars, tchotchky shops.
Joe K said on October 1, 2012 at 10:24 pm
I am always amused at the people who think the atomic bomb should not have been used against Japan. I always wonder how many would not be here to question that decision, had we invaded Japan and lost thousands of men, including the men who became these people’s fathers.
Little Bird said on October 1, 2012 at 10:36 pm
It has to be said. One should NEVER be amused at the loss of innocent life.
Joe K said on October 1, 2012 at 10:48 pm
The Japanees civilians at the time were hardly innocent. Read your history, however uniformed they were, they were ready to die for the empire, the Japanees were hording planes for kamikaze attacks, the civilians were being armed and ready to fight to the death, there was no surrender. I never said I was amused by innocent death, only the people who try and rewrite that part of history.
brian stouder said on October 1, 2012 at 10:49 pm
I keep thinking of the point at the end of the Civil War where Lincoln kept peace representatives from the Confederacy at bay, so as to get the 13th amendment passed in the House. How many soldiers lost their lives during that time, and how did he justify that to himself?
Catherine – you point to what is (I think) the absolute keystone of the entire American Civil War – at least from the perspective of the victorious Union. President Lincoln knew that when the war ended, the enormous war-powers that he had utilized would end. He was acutely aware that his Emancipation Proclamation could easily be struck down by the Supreme Court, or by the Congress; that legal American slavery would then survive the war.
To that extent, the Thirteenth Amendment was an all-important political goal, that was inextricably tied to the military defeat of the Southern Confederacy.
Our actual post-war history is of course plenty bad enough even with the 13th and 14th (and 15th) amendments; but indeed, despite all sorts of active and passive resistance to the spirit and the letter of those legacies of the American Civil War, they are the bedrock and the structural steel of a better, modern America; and as we know, we’re never very far from people who would take us right back to the 1840’s, if they could.
By way of saying, I think the president knew that all the oceans of blood and all the death and suffering of the American Civil War really could have amounted to nothing more than further evidence of how terrible humanity is, period. But getting those words of the 13th amendment 9and the others) into our foundational document would be a lasting achievement; certainly a damned expensive achievement – but still, a lasting step forward, and upward from the abyss.
As for the atomic attack on Japan, I just don’t know. We had experienced a completely horrendous month-long battle (to the death) at Iwo Jima, and another catastrophic battle at Okinawa, and surely – a “conventional” assault on the Japanese home islands would have been unimaginably terrible.
My too-cute remark would be that using a nuclear weapon on the island of Iwo Jima or Okinawa would have been more “justifiable” – certainly ground zero would have been more definitively military than civilian.
On the other hand, we wanted Iwo Jima so as to keep flying all those B-29’s over Tokyo and other major cities, where we were firebombing the living hell out of those people. Indeed, we didn’t use nukes on Germany, but one suspects that the people in Dresden (for example) wouldn’t have really known much of a difference.
By way of saying, Harry Truman got handed a “wonder weapon” and the possibility of a quick end to the ongoing carnage, and he signed off on it, and it worked. I cannot (myself) imagine any commander in chief, at that moment in history, not taking that decision…but as always, I could well be wrong!
And to give Harry some credit, he resisted Big Mac (et al) with their fantasies of nuking the Chinese and/or the Koreans, so I think the decision-making in 1945 was (if nothing else) at least not taken lightly.
And now, it’s time to go to bed!
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 10:52 pm
Seriously, Joe, are you claiming anybody’s innocent life was saved by bombing Hiroshima? That is way ignorant. People that had nothing to do with the war were brutally burned. Joe, I know you don’t believe this shock and awe bullshit.
Prospero said on October 1, 2012 at 10:56 pm
I’ve nothing to say. I don’t believe Joe believes all of those innocent people in Japan should have been french-fried. Or, he’s a major league asshole.
Little Bird said on October 1, 2012 at 10:58 pm
I was thinking of the children. THEY were innocent. As were a host of of adults. Never assume just because a country opposes us, ALL the inhbitants do as well.
I’m sorry Joe, but you’ve just lost what little respect you had. And lest you think I mean that lightly, I don’t. That bomb was an atrocity, a blight on the human race.
Joe K said on October 1, 2012 at 11:21 pm
Sorry we disagree.