Times a-changin’.

Oh, it can be so, so fun to lurk on Mark Souder’s Facebook page. (My former congressman, for you casual readers. Until he was caught having carnal knowledge of a staffer in an Indiana state park.) As I think I mentioned in the comments yesterday, after the Mourdock rape comment hit the internet, I thought I’d drop by to see what he thought of all of that. A near-perfect answer, he opined.

(I had a colleague at my first newspaper job who loved that verb — opine. I think it fits here.)

The next day, when it was clear this was playing as one more stand-up act in the GOP Rape Follies, I went back to see how he was taking things. Post? Deleted. Oh, well.

Now he’s back, furious — sorry, very angry at President’s cheap shots and acting like Letterman Show is for literate people — at the liberal media, which is bias.

Just a hunch, but I think he’s going to be really pissed in another couple weeks.

A political observer of my acquaintance is very calm about all this, and likes to point out the demography of it all — the far-right wing of the GOP is being finished off by the grinding millstone of time. Gay marriage? Compare and contrast the opinions of those under 40 and over 60. Did you see “2016?” How many of the heads in the theater had a full head of hair that wasn’t gray? Which is not to say it’s all going to be sunshine and roses for the left, or moderates, going forward. But I can’t help but think one thing that has Souder, the ultimate “gray-faced man with a two-dollar haircut,” to borrow Tina Fey’s already-classic phrase, so pissed is that no one is buying this bullshit anymore. No one is twisting anyone’s words because this is what these guys really believe. You don’t get a rape pass if you get pregnant afterward in their world; you get a precious little baby.

Take that how you will, Hoosiers. He gets elected, he’ll be voting on a Supreme Court nominee or two.

Oh, is it Friday already? I took a break this afternoon to take a bike ride that seemed longer due to a) extended sloth in September and October; and b) lots of wind. It was 75 Thursday, but that wind is bringing something else our way. Tomorrow’s high will be 20 degrees colder. But even with a chill in the air, we will be that much closer to Election Day, after which things at our shop will slow down considerably. So there’s that.

Any bloggage? I loved “Cloud Atlas” like few other novels in recent memory, but I can’t decide whether to see the movie. Sounds long and maybe not as good. If anyone sees it this weekend, report.

And have a great weekend. Cold and rainy though it may be.

Posted at 12:08 am in Current events |
 

123 responses to “Times a-changin’.”

  1. Dexter said on October 26, 2012 at 1:03 am

    The Indiana Neanderthals like Souder and Mourdock make me sick, then also right across the Ohio line we have a goober named Bob Latta who is just as bad. His father was Delbert Latta, who was my Congressman for years, like father like son.

    I only rode two and a half miles , had the wind at my back, realizing that riding back into the wind was not going to be fun, so I just turned around and pedalled back and garaged the bike.

    In about three weeks a new movie is going to be released called “Price Check” with Parker Posey. The trailer looks worthwhile.
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1845849/

  2. Dexter said on October 26, 2012 at 1:18 am

    Here’s a weekend reading link that dispels the myth about Rod Stewart, the really creepy myth, you know…
    http://www.nme.com/news/rod-stewart/66824

  3. Basset said on October 26, 2012 at 2:29 am

    Peering down a hallway at the Nashville airport right now, waiting for a flight from Detroit to show up … Not quite three hours late, we have come to expect that from Delta.

  4. Dave said on October 26, 2012 at 4:31 am

    Souder’s replacement, Stutzman, is only 36, and probably settled in for a long run in office. A few weeks ago, there was a letter to the editor in the Journal-Gazette defending his lack of a college degree because, hey, he’s like most of his constituents in Northeastern Indiana. I’m sure he’s got the race sown up this time, anyway, I don’t expect to ever see much change around here.

  5. coozledad said on October 26, 2012 at 5:23 am

    The fart noises from the vinyl seats on the rape boat are even more disturbing when you reckon those geeks’ chances of ever having engaged in consensual sex with anything besides a specially modified can of vegetables or a hole in a lavatory wall.

    If you don’t believe in synesthesia, just take a look at a picture of Josh Mandel, and ask yourself if you don’t smell something that needs a high pressure steam cleaning.

  6. beb said on October 26, 2012 at 8:10 am

    I liked Tina Fey’s comment that Akin’s defense of “Legitimate rape” sounds like he’s confusing rape with strenuous gymnastics.

  7. nancy said on October 26, 2012 at 8:39 am

    In case any of you are wondering, I’m told this is the dolt who insulted Richard Lugar to his face at a recent Indiana GOP event.

  8. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 9:01 am

    That photo of Runestad reminds me of the flim-flam guy on the commercials that hawk gold coins to “conservative investors” (ie – suckers); in fact, these two could be related. Didja notice how automatically (and heavy handedly) this guy conflates being a workaholic with his certainty that he did in fact build everything himself? Yeah – I bet nobody else deserves any credit at all. (I say, never trust a guy who spends more on his hair than his wife [or beard] does)

    And when Romney loses the race, and the fantasy game of finding the one critical thing that cost him the election begins, I will still be saying it was that damned lapel pin with the marred image of the flag of the United States. (Although, the oddly shape-shifting nature of his whitewall hairdo gets an honorable mention)

  9. del said on October 26, 2012 at 9:09 am

    “We are all in it together” — the trendy Soviet ideology? Wow. It’s sad Hoosiers have to live with that newspaper.

  10. Bob (not Greene) said on October 26, 2012 at 9:35 am

    I couldn’t read that Runestad column past the dumbest line I think I’ve ever read — that “We’re all in this together”is some sort of Soviet ideology. Well, dumbass, it was basically the U.S.national slogan during World War II.You know, the Greatest Generation. The glory days of the good old USA. Maybe he’s one of those America Firsters, who opposed the country’s entry into the war and Roosevelt (they used to call him “Rosenfelt” because, you know, it sounds very Jewey). Alex and Brian, I don’t know how you guys keep from punching everybody in the face over there.

  11. Mark P said on October 26, 2012 at 9:39 am

    I haven’t read the book, but I will probably see the movie once it comes out on pay-per-view or, more likely, DVD. Ebert’s review is not really equivocal. He struggles to explain the movie, but in his final analysis, essentially gives up. But, in giving up he says, “I was never, ever bored by ‘Cloud Atlas.’”

    The final paragraph of his review:

    “But, oh, what a film this is! And what a demonstration of the magical, dreamlike qualities of the cinema. And what an opportunity for the actors. And what a leap by the directors, who free themselves from the chains of narrative continuity. And then the wisdom of the old man staring into the flames makes perfect sense.”

  12. Bob (not Greene) said on October 26, 2012 at 9:39 am

    I guess Romney’s got the election locked up now

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/la-pn-meat-loaf-endorses-mitt-romney-at-boisterous-ohio-rally-20121025,0,3679875.story

  13. JWfromNJ said on October 26, 2012 at 9:57 am

    I pissed off a local Obama volunteer because I said I was leery about early voting as a result of sour puss face Mourdock in Indiana, my argument being they start way too early there and I’m thinking 50-60% of his early votes would be different now. I told them I’m with Obama, and Bill Nelson but I can’t support the dem congress candidate because her poll numbers are terrible and a local city councilman is running as NPA and he’s about as honest and informed as they come. Neither he or the D will win but he has my vote.

  14. Basset said on October 26, 2012 at 10:13 am

    Meanwhile, I don’t know why I bother getting all worked up over Mourdock and the other Indiana candidates when I have this idiot to deal with right at home:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/decision2012/2012s-worst-candidate-with-mark-clayton-tennessee-democrats-hit-bottom/2012/10/22/77da926e-1b8a-11e2-a146-ccabc9c85c53_story.html

  15. Kirk said on October 26, 2012 at 10:24 am

    Dexter,
    When I worked in Van Wert many long years ago, I had occasion to interview Del Latta once. I felt as if I were talking to a gangster.

  16. Bitter Scribe said on October 26, 2012 at 10:41 am

    Did you all see where the Salt Lake City Tribune endorsed Obama? Priceless.

  17. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 10:59 am

    Well, Lawrence O’Donnell told us yesterday that the WSJ ran a front-page frontal assault on Romney’s fantasy fiscal policy yesterday…

    so the people that are invested in maintaining their credibility after November 6 seem to be…rebalancing…their political investments in the Etch-a-Sketch guy

  18. Minnie said on October 26, 2012 at 11:02 am

    To touch on Nancy’s final paragraph, we on the Mid-Atlantic coast and north will not enjoy another of our mild fall weekends, the best our climate offers. Hurricane preparedness in August is expected, but it’s downright uncivilized to rush out for bottled water, ice and canned goods, to bring in bird feeders, potted plants and other potential missiles here at the very end of October. “Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness!” Bah! Good luck to all in Sandy’s path.

  19. Catherine said on October 26, 2012 at 11:04 am

    “We’re all in this together” is from High School Musical. Duh.

  20. Deborah said on October 26, 2012 at 11:06 am

    This is the time when all the crazy come out of the woodwork (Meatloaf?).

    Why are there so many political dolts in Indiana? How can all you Indiana folks stand it? When did this happen? Has it always been that way?

  21. LAMary said on October 26, 2012 at 11:12 am

    All in this together, like barn raisings, circling the wagons, pledging our lives and our fortunes, e pluribus unum. All that stuff.

  22. Sue said on October 26, 2012 at 11:12 am

    Wow, Basset, I don’t know what’s sadder, that you’re dealing with the poorest excuse for a Dem candidate in the country or that you have an executive committee member who knows his state party demographics well enough to say “We’re not going to come up with language saying, you know, ‘We believe in a woman’s right to choose,’ and all that stuff”.

  23. Prospero said on October 26, 2012 at 11:30 am

    Man, Doug Fister is one tough character.

    David Stern’s retirement news reminded me of one of his typically biased decisions a few years ago, when Big Shot Bob Horry assaulted Steve Nash. Stern’s office handed the NBA Championship to San Antonio by suspending Amar’e Stoudamire and letting Horry continue playing.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7LT_C7o5ZGM

    Stern had previously shown league favoritism for San Antonio, particularly by shamelessly promoting David Robinson ass a so-called “warrior” (7-footer in Submarine school at Navy, what a fracking joke) amid the jingoism of the Shrubco years. I believe real hoops fans would have preferred to see the great Steve Nash retired with a championship than to see him in a Lakers uniform. Gag.

    having carnal knowledge of a staffer in an Indiana state park

    The Appalachian Trail was too long a drive.

    The GOPer sturm of angst und drang over the President’s calling Willard a “bullshitter” is hilarious. First place, it’s an undeniably accurate appellation. Second place, none of them got twisted knickers when Dickless Cheney told Harry Reid to “go fuck yourself” on the Senate floor.

    That Runestad guy bears a certain facial likeness to Pork-face Jimmy Johnson, but he’s obviously not quite as enlightened.

    I’m so dumb and brainwashed, “We’re all in this together” reminds me of John Donne.

  24. Jason T. said on October 26, 2012 at 11:33 am

    Why are there so many political dolts in Indiana? How can all you Indiana folks stand it? When did this happen? Has it always been that way?

    According to my relatives in Evansville, the dolts are all from Kentucky.

    That’s their story, and they’re sticking to it.

  25. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 11:37 am

    Minnie – regarding Sandy (the storm,) I confess that this made me laugh

    http://fleetowner.com/fleet-management/east-coast-braces-frankenstorm

    “Frankenstorm”?

    the lead:

    Weather forecasters are predicting the merging of a hurricane and winter storm will pound the East Coast as early as this weekend, bringing with it gale force winds, heavy rains and flooding that could cause more than $1 billion in damages, making this “Frankenstorm” worse than “The Perfect Storm” that wrecked havoc on the Eastern seaboard in 1991. “The Perfect Storm only did $200 million of damage and I’m thinking a billion,” Jeff Masters, meteorology director of the private service Weather Underground told the Associated Press. “Yeah, it will be worse.”

    He said that will culminate when Hurricane Sandy, now in the Caribbean, an early winter storm in the West, and a blast of arctic air from the North merge into a super storm that weather forecasters said will most likely last five to six days.

    (I liked the “yeah, it’ll be worse” line. Instead of the hair-on-fire approach, I envision this guy as doing the Hooper character from “Jaws”)

    Years and years (and years) ago, I think Nance did a column on ‘weather terrorists’ – and The Weather Channel (et al) have shifted the paradigm to something more like ‘weather capitalists’, or even ‘weather 1-percenters’ (or possibly ‘I built that’ Weather marketers)

  26. MarkH said on October 26, 2012 at 11:37 am

    Actually, Scribe, not news at all, when you consider the Salt Lake Tribune has always been independent of the LDS church (the rival Deseret News is church-owned), and more center/left leaning. In addition to the genuine wariness of Romney, it’s a reflection of the dilution of Mormon influence that is ongoing in the Salt Lake metro area as the population grows. The Tribune endorsed Obama in 2008 and endorsed Bill Clinton in the past as well.

    It would have been “stunning” had Jon Huntsman been the nominee and not received the Trib’s endorsement. He is much more well-thought of than Romney in Utah, and would have carried the state Nov.6 as Romney no doubt will.

  27. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 11:42 am

    According to my relatives in Evansville, the dolts are all from Kentucky. That’s their story, and they’re sticking to it.

    That is undeniably true – but that part of Indiana also gained the Lincolns of Kentucky…so there’s that

  28. Minnie said on October 26, 2012 at 11:58 am

    Brian, your post makes me chuckle. I, too, liked the, “Yeah, it’ll be worse” comment and read the dry delivery. This has been a disappointing hurricane season for the weathercasters. Finally they’re getting to play with their toys. Not to say there’s not potential for damage and danger, but the early and steadily escalating prediction of same, when the path of the storm is not yet clear, is tedious. I’m headed out now for a loaf of bread. We’ve got the jug of wine angle covered.

  29. Prospero said on October 26, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    Spud Webb, 5 ft.-7 in. maybe, 47 years old. in a business suit and street shoes, shows he can still dunk. Makes my day.

    Hurricane Sandy. We’ll get rain and heavy surf tomorrow. And great kayaking Sunday.

  30. Minnie said on October 26, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    Edit: I’ll get my Pollyanna on and consider Sandy as welcome distraction from political turbulence.

  31. Minnie said on October 26, 2012 at 12:02 pm

    Prospero, my husband is out in his kayak right now before attending an afternoon meeting.

  32. Charlotte said on October 26, 2012 at 12:03 pm

    Having been around a lot of head injuries — I kept peering at Fister’s pupils all night. Glancing blow it might have been, but it was still a major league hit. Yikes. Hope he’s okay …

  33. Connie said on October 26, 2012 at 12:06 pm

    According to my relatives in Evansville, the dolts are all from Kentucky. That’s their story, and they’re sticking to it.

    Well you know what the Hoosiers say: Indiana is where it is because Kentucky sucks and Michigan blows.

  34. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    Minnie – and if the thing can hit the Carolinas hard enough, it could possibly aid Republican voter-suppression efforts.

    Hell, come to think of it, I bet Pat Robertson (or whoever does his revival tent schtick now) is busily having placards printed and cutting Judgement Day dvds right now – warning one and all that Sandy proves God* is a Romney voter… (when He isn’t arranging for someone’s daughter to deal with the consequences of a rape/divinely inspired life)

  35. Prospero said on October 26, 2012 at 12:16 pm

    Good on your hubby, Minnie. We’ll have rips and undertows, which are fun in the kayak. If you can steer the boat right into a rip, the sensation is like speeding downhill. Sort of like this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4KPSe67iwR0

    We might head across Port Royal Sound to Parris Island and invade the Marines.

    Regarding Fister, how do you just act like nothing happened?

    Flamer RMoney surrogate John Sununu claims General Powell’s Obama endorsement is based upon race. Pardon me gray-face? You chickenshit chickenhawk from one of the most racist states in the union can STFU. Powell was far more detailed and specific about the reasons for endorsing Obama than Willard has ever been about anything he intends to do if he’s electedAnd if you paid $2 for that Marcelle, you are a chump, and you wuz robbed. Waiting for any GOPer to do the decent thing and tell this inexcusable ahole he’s full of shit and lacking in the integrity Powell seems to have in abundance, despite being duped by Shrubco.

  36. John (not McCain) said on October 26, 2012 at 12:34 pm

    “According to my relatives in Evansville, the dolts are all from Kentucky.”

    As a one-time resident of Kentucky, and proud member of the Georgetown College* class of ’85, I can say that’s because only a dolt would leave Kentucky for Indiana.

    *Full disclosure – same school Gary Bauer went to, so I ain’t all THAT proud. Especially since they gave him a distinguished alumnus award, thus assuring they will never get a dime of my money.

  37. Minnie said on October 26, 2012 at 12:42 pm

    I’ve been concerned about the storm and voter suppression in NC and VA, too. I can hike to my poll if necessary, but lots of people can’t. Wonder what Coozledad has to say on this topic.

  38. Jolene said on October 26, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Prospero, it was Sen. Leahy, not Sen. Reid, that Cheney invited to do the anatomically impossible.

    Sununu is a first-order prick. He has been saying insulting things about President Obama all along. At one point, he said that he wished the president would “be more American.”

  39. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 1:50 pm

    At one point, he said that he wished the president would “be more American.”

    Which was mighty hallow talk, coming from a know-nothing palooka who was, himself, born in Havanna – and who doesn’t speak for any version of America that I can recognize as worthy of emulation

  40. Dave said on October 26, 2012 at 2:24 pm

    Basset, Jesus didn’t have pictures or a website? Who knew? I guess we don’t have the market cornered here in NE Indiana.

  41. basset said on October 26, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    And there’s more… comments from the state Democratic chairman:

    http://www.nashvillescene.com/pitw/archives/2012/10/26/forrester-unless-lightning-strikes-were-going-to-be-in-the-super-minority

  42. Dexter said on October 26, 2012 at 2:39 pm

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SmPMMitJDYg

    It’s true: Meatloaf was kickin’ it with John Rich and Mitt Romney last night in Defiance, about 18 miles south of me.

    And when I first heard the following story, I just ignored it…had to be total ridiculous bullshit. It’s true, this story. I guess this makes this young woman the highest paid whore in history?

    http://newsone.com/2066873/virginity-on-ebay/

  43. MarkH said on October 26, 2012 at 3:16 pm

    “a know-nothing palooka”. Really, Brian? His Wikipedia entry sheds some light.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_H._Sununu

    Sununu may be a lot of things, including Havana-born, as you said. But, politics aside, you don’t get advanced degrees, including a ph.d, in mechanical engineering from MIT while rocking a skull vacuum. He was also associate professor and associate dean of the mechanical engineering department at Tufts University in his thirties prior to his political career. Not a defense of Sununu’s politics here; he may be his own worst enemy and his tv appearances I find cringe-worthy. Just some balance.

    Oh, wait. Any Supreme Court Justice David Souter fans here? Thank Sununu, who was suckered by his NH colleague Warren Rudman and who in turn suckered George HW Bush into nominating Souter after the Bork nomination debacle. They believed he would be a center-right jurist and we all know how THAT turned out. And, when he finally had his come-uppance on the travel expenditures as Bush 41′s chief of staff, it was W who engineered Sununu’s departure from the White House in 1990.

    Prospy, do you include Rudman in your description of New Hampshire as one of the most racist states?

  44. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    ? Any Supreme Court Justice David Souter fans here? Thank Sununu

    Funny you should say that, MarkH; this week went sideways for me, with a major-special interruption – but THEN, Shelby (our 14 year old) and I went off to IPFW to see Jeffery Toobin deliver a lively and informative lecture on the US Supreme Court, and he indicated that his favorite Justice was indeed David Souter. Toobin expounded upon several of the life-long bachelor’s eccentricities, including not liking electric light, and not owning a cell phone or a computer, or pretty much anything else that was invented in the 20th century. Toobin noted that, for whatever reason, people often confused Justice Stephen Breyer and Justice David Souter. And one time, for whatever reason (possibly a dinner – or some such?) Justice Souter was in a casual conversation with a guy who said “You’re Justice Breyer, right?” and Souter played along (so as not to embarrass the fellow in front of his wife) right to the punchline of the story, which was pretty amusing.

    If Sunnunu had something to do with Souter’s elevation, then that’s one good thing that Sunnunu ever did. Aside from that, I’ve no doubt that Sunnunu has brains. But he has no tact, nor grace, nor humility. The man has no class – which was one thing Sparky Anderson always (and rightly) insisted that ‘you gotta have’.

  45. alex said on October 26, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    Well I went and did my civic duty today. It sure was crowded, but I’m glad to be done with it.

    Tonight and this weekend celebrating my fifty-first. Tomorrow night my partner’s family is having its big annual bonfire party in Otsego Township, Steuben County, where there will be a couple of birthday honorees. They run a construction business and they build enormous structures out of wooden pallets and other discarded materials and then they burn them down. The Hamilton Fire Dept. is always there with a couple of fire trucks on standby. This year the structure is a 30-foot-tall witch stirring a cauldron and she has an articulating arm.

  46. Deborah said on October 26, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    Happy birthday Alex. At 51 you’re still a youngen.

    Sununu is the epitome of a gray faced man with a $2 haircut.

  47. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 4:26 pm

    Alex – happy birthday! And indeed – watch out for the giant, blazing, pot-stirring witch, incase the wind should switch, and she begins to… pitch

  48. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    (channeling Dorothy Gale)

  49. Julie Robinson said on October 26, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    Greetings from the Pacific Northwest, where it is cold, gray, and pouring down rain. My daughter loves it but I think it would get me down to live here. I’ve either been busy or haven’t had much internet access so I’ve only checked in briefly a couple of times. The skating was marvelous, seeing Mom was mostly marvelous*, seeing Sarah is ultra marvelous, and sleeping until 10 the most marvelous of all.

    Happy Birthday, Alex! In three more days I’ll be precisely five years older than you, and I guess that means I’m well on my way to 60. Which feels okay.

    I am praying that Mourdock is defeated but not wasting my prayers on Stutzman, since his opponent is barely a blip on the radar.

    *Right before the election, and we’re on opposite sides.

  50. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    Happy birthday, Julie!

    I think Mourdock may have mangled his chances badly enough that we Hoosiers may decide to go for the reasonable-sounding Democratic nominee – as we have in the past.

    And I hope that it somehow could shift Indiana into the president’s column, as we were in 2008.

    To be blunt – if an Indiana voter was disenchanted with the president, and unenthusiastic about Romney, why then Mourdock might just moot that person’s remaining reason to even go to the polls, yes?

    Anyway, one can hope, eh?

  51. Prospero said on October 26, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    Deborah@46, except Sununu’s $2-buck chuck haircut is a really foppish looking Marcel. Sununu is the worst kind of know-nothing, ignorant by choice. He’s a virulent climate change denier, and a typically obtuse GOPer on anything involving the human reproductive system. He has supported andespouused flagrantly racist organizations and viewpoints during his political career, either because he believes them, or because a lot of people in Neh Hempsha roll that way. Of course, that’s just me projecting my innate liberal form of paternalistic racism, I’m sure. Most damning thing about Sununu is that his political beginnings were as an acolyte to Meldrim Thompson, an egregious racist bully that was pretty much the Orville Faubus of the redneck Northeast, and undeniably one of the worst US governors ever elected.

    Right Jolene, it was Pat Leahy. My Oldtimer’s kicking in in the pm.

    Mark, no Rudman is not a racist, but Neh Hempsha people display more Confederate battle flags, which they ignorantly call “Stars and Bars”, than I’ve ever seen while living in SC for twelve years and GA for 15. Maine and Neh Hempsha have more rednecks per square mile than the southren half of SC and the northern half of GA put together. IMNSHO, based on many years experience. If somebody else knows more about Neh Hempsha than I, contradict me. I know what I’m talking about. When it says “Live Free or Die” on the license plates, they mean white people.

    I’ve worked with at least 100 mechanical engineers in my career, and mechanical engineering is not rocket science and a lot of those folks were pretty limited intellectually. Many were party animal types. Mechanical engineering includes plumbing systems, for which you need to know shit flows downhill.

    Happy birthday Alex. That witch bonfire sounds like fun. 51 is distant in my rearview.

  52. Prospero said on October 26, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    With less than two weeks to go until Election Day, there is a deep divide among Republican leaders over whether to emphasize
    misogyny or racism as the campaign’s closing theme.

  53. Joe K said on October 26, 2012 at 5:13 pm

    A little windy, but warm in the mouse house today, I see no sign of a resection down here, and also no sign of anyone going hungry, if you get my drift, took the walking tour of living with the land, pretty neat how their growing things but very labor intensive, interested in fish farming as a customer I fly is exploring Agra-farming, yellow Perch and walleye, but I won’t knowingly eat Talapia ever again.
    Pilot Joe

  54. Julie Robinson said on October 26, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    Joe, here’s an article I just read about the recession in the Mouse-House area, and a church that is working to provide help: http://www.livinglutheran.com/stories/the-good-samaritans.html#.UIr-fcXA8TY

  55. MichaelG said on October 26, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    Happy birthday, Alex and Julie.

  56. Deborah said on October 26, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    Happy birthday to Julie too. Another youngen compared to me.

    Prospero I’m with you about mechanical engineers. Having worked for many years at a few architecture firms and with an architect husband I can say that the engineers who are greatly respected are the structural engineers.

  57. JWfromNJ said on October 26, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    Happy birthday to ALex and Julie.

    Meatloaf ruined it for me – I can do a spot on meatloaf voice on karaoke, but it takes alcohol or a dare to get me up there. I think I figured out the one thing he won’t do for love. Paul Ryan.

    It’s a “hurricane” day here, schools closed. beaches closed. 40 mph wind, heavy rain but not memorable as storms go.

    My mother in NJ called me for the basic preps. the news up there is going beserk. The stores are already cleaned out. I lectured her on not buying a grill with a side burner. Her plans are tuna salad, deli meats, my must have storm or not item Paramalat (in my house the boy finishes the “real” milk at breakfast and we need UHT milk to have coffee. She’s filling the bathtubs, all her huge pasta pots, and on monday my dad will be forced to tape off the huge showy glass windows. they live one block from the ocean.

    For me it was an excuse to make pork stew!!!!

  58. ROGirl said on October 26, 2012 at 6:10 pm

    I’ve worked with a lot of mechanical engineers in the auto industry. Most are pleasant, usually conservative politically, and have narrow frames of reference — not much intellectual curiosity there.

    Happy birthday to all.

  59. LAMary said on October 26, 2012 at 6:14 pm

    Happy Birthday Alex and Julie. I will spare you the weird monkey dance birthday video and just go with the classic:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ztoSUhbNntQ

  60. brian stouder said on October 26, 2012 at 6:39 pm

    Mary – very cool. Not only the music is timeless, but the hairstyles are very 2012, too

  61. Sherri said on October 26, 2012 at 6:41 pm

    Fascinating article on the decline of public higher education, particularly in California. Once upon a time, even Republicans believed that it was important to invest in public education, so that they’d have an educated workforce. Now, they keep money offshore to avoid taxes and complain that we need more H1B visas because there aren’t enough workers to hire.

    BTW, near the end of the article, there’s a reference to UC Regent Richard Blum, who is also an investor in for-profit education companies. That name sounded familiar to me, and then I remembered – he’s also the husband of Senator Dianne Feinstein. Of all the people I’ve ever voted for, she’s one of the most disappointing.

  62. Prospero said on October 26, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    Very cool Kickstarter project I got onto yesterday. I have a sister-in-law that is an excellent coo of Mexican dishes, and this seems like an excellent Christmas present for her. She also has an amazing collection of cookbooks in a custom bookshelf built into her kitchen cabinetry.

    Happy birthday Julie. re: your mom, you know what Lou Reed says:

    My mother said she saw him in chinatown
    But you can’t always trust your mother

    in Last Great American Whale,

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rn6G_EWFMds

    Deborah, the only thing about the structural guys is that they do everything belt and suspenders, unless they are coming up with crackpot schemes like slip-forming highrise walls. Not a good idea.

    Very cool Kickstarter project I got onto yesterday.

  63. MichaelG said on October 26, 2012 at 7:40 pm

    We’ve got ‘em all here. Civil, structural, mechanical and electrical and I work with them all. Well, all types, not necessarily all of them individually. Interestingly, two of our three structural engineers are women including the supervisor. The piles of abstruse figures in their ‘calcs’ are mind boggling as is the structural engineer’s liability. Our big, big, boss is a civil engineer by trade, an Iranian by nationality and a wonderful guy. You couldn’t ask for a better, more forward thinking boss.

  64. MichaelG said on October 26, 2012 at 7:51 pm

    Whoops, clicked submit too soon. I agree about structural engineers, although I like civils too. One odd thing about the structurals concerns money. I have to control the budgets for my projects and the structurals are always the least expensive of them all and usually end up returning money at the end of the design phase. I get fabulous value for my bucks. The architects and electricals are always whining about needing more money.

  65. Prospero said on October 26, 2012 at 8:08 pm

    Shrub’s work wife Condi talks sense talks sense about the Benghazi embassy murders. Suppose it’s too much to ask that Willard might listen to Ms. Rice instead of the psychopath Bolton on this subject.

  66. Dexter said on October 26, 2012 at 8:48 pm

    Happy Birthday, Alex. Many more.

  67. coozledad said on October 26, 2012 at 8:52 pm

    Minnie: We were handing out sample ballots at early voting today, taking the late afternoon shift from a volunteer who’d been swamped all morning and had to be restocked twice from the Dem office.
    The last statewide early vote totals I saw (yesterday’s) had Obama voters up by a little over 100,000 over Romney.
    This morning was cold and windy and we still had very high turnout, so I’m not too concerned about the weather. All the talk about lack of Democratic enthusiasm is bullshit. The Dem office was crowded with volunteers doing phonebanking and we’re going to pay for a food truck a third time to rope some more unsuspecting innocents into a panel van to take advantage of same day registration/voting between now and Nov. 3rd

  68. MarkH said on October 26, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    “I’ve worked with at least 100 mechanical engineers in my career, and mechanical engineering is not rocket science and a lot of those folks were pretty limited intellectually…”

    Prospero, wtf. You are “parbly” the only person on the face of the earth who would make a statement like that. Mechanical engineers = limited intellect. Right. I have known (but, grant you, not worked with professionally) a few engineers in my life as well. My late brother-in-law was a civil engineer. While I was weighing a course of study before college, I expressed an interest in his line of work as I was fascinated with the road/highway building his company did in western PA while I was a summer laborer. He readily admitted that civil engineering may the least demanding in the field, but it was a narrow difference between that and the most demanding/difficult. He pointed to mechanical and structural as the toughest, based on his studies and his buddies’ stories while at Carnegie Tech in the early 60s. All these endeavours, he stressed, mean you better have your math/calculus/physics act together AND have a strong aptitude/desire/DISCIPLINE for crunching detail work, or forget it. Took his advice after a few drafting and mechanical drawing courses in high school. I left “rocket science” and found my niche half way through college with a j-school degree. Draw your own conclusions with that.

    I’ll grant that you and Deborah may have some anecdotal experience and your opinions come from a certain, let’s say, “asshole” factor brought in by individuals in the profession. I’l go with MichaelG’s view, that accomplishment in any aspect of the engineering field deserve respect. It’s a tough line of work only for those who really love it.

  69. Sherri said on October 26, 2012 at 9:32 pm

    The main difference I saw in the degree of difficulty among the engineering disciplines (before I decided to switch to physics instead) was in the amount of math required beyond calculus. Electrical engineering required the most, civil engineering the least. The reason I switched to physics was because the engineering curriculum is very narrow; there’s so much much stuff to cover that there’s not much time for taking electives. At least not when and where I was in EE way back when.

  70. JohnCT said on October 26, 2012 at 9:43 pm

    Prospero. Sigh. As one of them Mechanical Engineers (and a metallurgist too), I do have to agree that some of my fellow engineers are a bit dim on social graces, vary in intellect, and are probably reprehensible in other ways that I can’t think of. Hell, I’m probably as guilty as the rest of them, and probably too damn pompous for my own good.

    BUT I have been around long enough to realize that they are not the only group with such foibles. …something something glass houses and stones.

    PS. I agree that Sununu’s a jerk. He always has been, even before he jumped to the national stage. And yes, NH and ME have their share of rednecks – but so does every other State in the Union.

  71. Minnie said on October 26, 2012 at 9:55 pm

    Coozledad: Happy to hear the Dems are turning out early in your part of the world, thanks in part to your hotdog-ged efforts.

  72. Kaye said on October 26, 2012 at 10:05 pm

    Kirk – I had lunch in Van Wert today. Did you work at the Times Bulletin? My dad was a printer there a million years ago. So long ago he told stories of buying lunch for a quarter.

    Cooze, I am glad to see your info indicating NC isn’t as “over” as some may want us to think.

    Interestingly (at least to me) just this evening I received my first and second emails from Romney’s campaign. A month ago I gave them my contact info in exchange for a ticket to a local rally. At that time I did receive an email confirmation with the ticket. Just yesterday I commented to friend on the lack of email from the Rs. Now I have to suspect they are spying on me :)

  73. Minnie said on October 27, 2012 at 12:30 am

    Prospero@35: Now that’s a ride. Don’t think Stumpy Lake offers quite as much excitement.

  74. brian stouder said on October 27, 2012 at 8:31 am

    So, I followed Nance’s link to “what these guys really believe”, regarding ‘legitmate rape’ and ‘God’s plan’*, and on the sidebar I saw this link -

    http://www.slate.com/articles/double_x/doublex/2012/10/sexism_in_the_skeptic_community_i_spoke_out_then_came_the_rape_threats.html

    which is quite troubling. Intelligent woman who delivers lively lectures and blogs + large groups of supposedly intelligent people who are mostly men = rock-headed sexism (and possibly worse).

    Depressing.

    *Mourdock’s crocodile tears for the lives of the babies that God Himself intended, despite that God also intended to have the mother assaulted and raped ring especially hollow, as I don’t recall ever hearing the guy express any heartfelt opposition to the United States military, when it occasionally flattens a building or two in Pakistan with missiles from drone aircraft; or for that matter, when we ‘shocked’ and ‘awed’ various neighborhoods in Baghdad – which surely contained moms and dads and unborn babies and others who were on Earth because God intended that they be.

    By way of saying, I’d have at least a little more respect for his stated moral objection to taking any life – despite that he may detest how that life came to be – if he also applied that belief to our $600,000,000,000 annual defense budget, which is all about killing other people and their babies, despite that they are ALL self-evidently here on Earth because it was part of God’s plan that they would be here on Earth.

  75. alex said on October 27, 2012 at 9:05 am

    I suppose there must be some stigma about being a mechanical versus structural engineer. One of my brothers-in-law is both and is quick to correct you when you say he’s a mechanical engineer. His degrees are in mechanical but his on-the-job training is in structural.

    My brother has a mechanical engineering bachelor’s degree from Rose-Hullman and a superior intellect. He had some classmates and later some co-workers who weren’t all that bright and he found the people he worked with pretty tedious and uninformed, but after he got his master’s in hydrology and became an environmental engineer, he ended up with a boss who was a creationist and Biblical literalist who tried to browbeat subordinates with it. So you can find dolts anywhere, even with advanced scientific degrees, and how they reconcile their knowledge with their superstitions is anyone’s guess.

  76. brian stouder said on October 27, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    This story, and the accompanying photos, immediately struck me as silly:

    http://www.wane.com/dpp/report_it/sign-vandalized-at-huntington-church-with-anti-romney-message

    the lead:

    HUNTINGTON, Ind. (WANE) A viewer used Report !t to send WANE pictures of the sign in front of the South Broadway Church of Christ in Huntington on Friday. One side of the sign read “Christ voted Democrat” and the other read “Romney hates women”. Luke Jackson, the pastor of the church, said the statements on the sign were vandalism and that the authorities had been contacted.

    First, it occurred in Huntington – the place where Dan Quayle Potatoe comes from – and we are to believe that a supporter of people (or Saviors) that “vote Democrat” would rearrange the letters on a church sign?

    And indeed – not to sound like a word-game guy, but what was on the sign to begin with that allowed the “vandals” to re-arrange the letters to get these messages?

    And this warranted calling the police, rather than simply fixing it? The pastor thinks this is vandalism?

    And thank heavens for the “viewer who used ‘Report It’” to send the pictures s/he snapped, so we could all see, before the letters were re-arranged to remind us about the upcoming carry-in (or whatever), yes?

    And – skip the comments, unless you’re just in an ugly mood to begin with.

    And indeed, Mourdock actually would fit Indiana like a glove

  77. Prospero said on October 27, 2012 at 1:24 pm

    Humorous takedown: Silly shit Andrew Sullivan says.

    Serendipitous GOTV story:

    http://www.islandpacket.com/2012/10/26/2258223/108-year-old-beaufort-woman-first.html

    Brian:
    Scorched tarted vomit.
    Now smothery enema.

    What’s going on in that parsonage? Creepy. And I guess the pastor is claiming that an Obama supporter used the obtuse Democrat form for the name of the party. Reverend tool. And calling this vandalism and claiming the sign was defaced suggest a severe problem with functional English. Wut hell yeah, this is equivalent to hanging empty chairs in hangman’s nooses on front lawns, and that bullethole-riddled outhouse at the Utah state GOPer convention.

  78. basset said on October 27, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    This talk of intelligence reminds me of a conversation I had with an airline captain friend during Shrub’s presidency:

    “Well, anyone who can fly a high-performance jet can’t be all THAT stupid, can he?”

    “You’d be surprised.”

    No way in hell I could be any kind of engineer. Not only did I not pass calculus, I didn’t even attempt it, knew there was no way I was gonna get through it.

  79. ROGirl said on October 27, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    Basset, I know I couldn’t pass calculus, but on the other hand, I don’t go on TV and spout racist shit about Colin Powell’s endorsement of Obama. And an engineer couldn’t have written my M.A. thesis.

  80. Prospero said on October 27, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    ROGirl: No matter how what I said is misrepresented, I was not denigrated engineers. Some of my best friends, as Sununu would say.I don’t believe from my experience that engineering is particularly demanding academically. Requires command of a calculator and the sense to pic the right formulae out of handbooks and industry specs. As far as writing your thesis, engineers generally think copying a page from a manufacturer’s proprietary catalog is writing a spec, thank goodness, it’s what i get paid for. As for me, calculus? NFW.

  81. MichaelG said on October 27, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    Yes, engineers have all kinds of tables and manuals and texts to assist them in their endeavors. But there is a lot more to a design than consulting a table. I’ve watched a lot of projects in the design phase, observed engineers good, bad and excellent. There’s a lot of thought and experience even in something as mundane as designing a multi-zone HVAC system and ductwork for a public building. I’ve seen elegant, smooth and simple designs and I’ve seen buildings where a couple of package units had to be installed two years after a bad design to take up the slack.

  82. MichaelG said on October 27, 2012 at 3:53 pm

    Manufacturer’s cutsheets are intended to be used as specifications. All the pertinent information is presented in a neat, comprehensive form. A designer would be a fool not to take advantage of this resource. The trick for the engineer is to write his or her spec in a generic fashion so as to allow for possible substitution. I write front end (Div. 1) specs all the time. At our place all technical specifications are written by licensed engineers and architects.

  83. Basset said on October 27, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    Now that I think of it, my (now former) airline captain friend has a degree in engineering technology… From a directional school, Middle Tennessee… so he wouldn’t get much respect from certain engineers, I guess. Have trusted him with my life and Mrs. B’s on several occasions, though.

  84. Sue said on October 27, 2012 at 6:05 pm

    All this talk about engineers reminds me of the misconception that anyone can be a nurse. Doesn’t matter if you’ve got an associate’s degree or a bachelor’s, or higher, or go into a specific nursing specialty, you have to get past the baseline education and that requires more than many people can pull out of their brains.
    One of the running jokes in The Big Bang Theory is that everyone looks down at Howard because all he has is a master’s in mechanical engineering.
    Engineers, nurses, anyone involved in a math and/or science-heavy career – I tip my hat, which covers my puny little brain, to all of you.

  85. Danny said on October 27, 2012 at 7:18 pm

    Comical the commentary is here on mechanical engineers. Prospero, it’s not rocket science I guess unless you have worked on guidance systems for satellites, space shuttle robotics systems, controls & positioning for multiple launch rocket systems or been on the call-before-launch checklist to see if all systems are “GO” for the Apollo missions. Then, of course, it is kinda rocket-science-y.

    I’ve done the first three over the course of my career and my mentor (and others who I’ve worked with) was on the call list for the Apollo missions. In addition to his work on propulsion systems, he also solved some of the issues that led to the Apollo 1 crew member deaths from the fire on the launch pad. This work was obliquely referenced in the movie, “Apollo 13,” when Tom Hanks’ character was easing his young son’s concerns about the chances of a fire killing him on the launch pad.

  86. Danny said on October 27, 2012 at 7:23 pm

    You know, Sue, stupid cuts across all demographics. Some of the dumbest people I’ve met in my life have advanced degrees, technical or otherwise. And don’t put yourself down. Acumen for math and science is not a litmus test for intelligence.

  87. coozledad said on October 27, 2012 at 7:39 pm

    It’s funny how advanced education in the sciences and extraordinary technical ability doesn’t necessarily translate into an ability to communicate or straddle the tessitura of socially complex ideas. It’s the virtuoso violinist vs. composer paradox: every now and then a fast playing monkey will be able to write a couple of bars of listenable music. Statistically, however, that monkey is an interpreter. A thoroughly useful monkey, but rarely a beautiful monkey.

    I’ve witnessed firsthand the limitations of otherwise gifted people who when confronted with their own extracurricular limitations, revert to the “irritable mental gestures masquerading as thought” that no reactionary can ever hope to escape.

  88. Sherri said on October 27, 2012 at 7:52 pm

    What you learn to do in a technical/science education is solve problems. There is a certain arrogance that tends to come with that; you’re used to solving problems all the time, you don’t tend to think of socially complex problems as all that much harder than any other problem. You see a problem, you solve a problem; minor details like the fact that nobody asked for your solution, or likes your solution are all that important. The solution works, doesn’t it?

    This seems an appropriate comic to reference here: http://xkcd.com/435/

  89. Prospero said on October 27, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    Michael G. Manufacturer’s cuts are written specifically to steer business directly to the companies that publish them. They always include proprietary information that could rule out equally useful products by other manufacturers. In many states, it’s illegal to even publish specs of that sort for any project involving public bidding laws. They are also illegal for HUD-funded housing projects in my experience. I ‘m neither an engineer nor a licensed architect, and I’ve never met one of either that could write a non-proprietary spec (or wasn’t to lazy or bloated on free meals from salesmen to bother), in more than 30 years of writing specs professionally. These guys will give a proprietary name to their own version of common finshes to try to snooker competition. This rarely is a benefit to a client/owner.

  90. coozledad said on October 27, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    I failed to indicate that my comment at 87 should be read in the voice of Werner Herzog.

  91. Prospero said on October 27, 2012 at 7:58 pm

    Danny, the subject became mechanical engineers when somebody tried to defend the crass, ciased boor Sununu by pointing out his BAME. So it came about legitimately.

  92. Sherri said on October 27, 2012 at 11:53 pm

    Go Giants! (With all due sympathy to those of you who are Tiger fans.)

  93. Dexter said on October 28, 2012 at 1:30 am

    Sherri, I am not a true die-hard Tiger fan, I’ll root for any team that is doing well and I can get them on cable without going hog-wild and buying the entire MLB package, but the Tigers are really good now and they are closet via roadways , so I watched or listened to almost every game in 2012, flipping back and forth with Redlegs games.
    I have no explanation as to the collapse of the bats of Fielder and Cabrera. It’s ridiculous. I love watching your Kung Fu Panda ripping, but not at the expense of every Tiger pitcher. I love watching Tim Lincecum and have for years, but does he HAVE to look like a Cy Young winner every night? Oh yeah, he does have a couple of those , eh? Well, it’s all but over unless Manager Leyland sticks those broken Tiger bats up the Tigers’ collective ass and sets them on fire. Goddam, gentlemen, what’s it gonna take to get a fucking RUN for once?

  94. MichaelG said on October 28, 2012 at 2:37 am

    Certainly manufacturers write their specs to exclude other manufacturers. That’s a startling observation? I thought, Prospero, that I was clear in saying “The trick for the engineer is to write his or her spec in a generic fashion so as to allow for possible substitution.” Of course I’m aware that it’s wrong and illegal to write sole source specs. I’m the guy who has to make sure the whole enterprise is straight and legal. I happily invite the Sac Bee or Channel Three or Mom or anybody else to inspect any project that we undertake. Believe me, there are plenty of second place contractors, union reps and rump groups scrutinizing our plans, specs and contracts. You’re welcome to inspect them as well.

    Our design professionals do, indeed, write original specifications and are not “bloated on free meals” or under any other influence when they do their work and I find that insinuation insulting.

    We don’t do rocket science here, we merely try to construct public buildings or upgrades to existing public buildings to the best of our considerable (I believe) abilities.

    I’m not a big time baseball fan anymore and haven’t been since the ninety four (?) world serious. I’ve been drifting away from major league sports over the years because of the almost total emphasis on the almighty dollar.

    That said, I have to admit that I am a fair weather fan of the Giants and their post season performance this year has blown me away. Talk about a team of destiny. As of tonight they’ve won what, six in a row? Gonna bet against them tomorrow (Sunday)? I’ve even forgotten who the ‘niners are playing. And Blanco’s ninth inning catch in the corner says it all.

  95. Sherri said on October 28, 2012 at 2:38 am

    I’m glad to see Timmy looking like Timmy again, since he looked like anything but a Cy Young winner most of the season. When you consider that Lincecum weighs less than 160 lbs soaking wet (and that includes the hair), it’s really amazing what he’s able to do on the mound. He’s certainly making Bruce Bochy’s job a whole lot easier this postseason.

  96. Deborah said on October 28, 2012 at 4:14 am

    Danny, Are you still in Hawaii? I just read that Hawaii is in the path of a major tsunami.

  97. Deborah said on October 28, 2012 at 5:52 am

    The Des Moines Register endorses Romney, the first republican endorsement since Richard Nixon in 1972. Ha! Look how well that presidency turned out. I’m actually not surprised though, my time working on a project in Des Moines made me aware that there is some serious money there, very conservative, severely conservative money.

  98. David C. said on October 28, 2012 at 6:52 am

    I have a degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology from a sub-directional state university, Ferris State, in Michigan. I work as a design engineer. I have most of the traits ascribed to engineers. I’m extremely introverted, don’t wear clothes particularly well, am socially awkward, etc. I am liberal politically, unlike most of my colleagues who are conservatives or conservatives masquerading as independents. But I like the work, and I do it well, and that’s enough for me. There is one thing that makes me proud, and I believe that every engineer, no matter their discipline, believes the same thing – at least we aren’t bean counters.

  99. Prospero said on October 28, 2012 at 10:30 am

    Sherri: Is this the advent of Lincecum as Eckersley? He’s got the fastball and control for closing. And that Eckersley sort of je ne sais quois. He always reminded me of Guidry, because they are both so slight. Although Guidry is probably a fat guy these days, hanging with Yogi at Italian restaurants.

    MichaelG, I never said anything about anybody you work with, so there was no insinuation involved. I only commented on what I have seen directly. I also knew a sales rep from a well-known valve manufacturer that helped me write the only generic and unquestionably fair valve spec I’ve ever read. I’ve seen cut sheets marked up beyond comprehension and just handed to typists for publication, and it was a very common experience. To this day, I have to police specs of mine that go out with cut and paste and white out alterations to add proprietary stuff back in. You work with more trustworthy and conscientious people obviously.

  100. Danny said on October 28, 2012 at 11:22 am

    Deborah, no, but it is weird that we are just missing the tsunami and on our way to the hurricane. Our flight was delayed several hours and we ended up boarding at 1 AM local time on Friday to fly back to California. Got back here early Friday and found out my grandmother had passed away back in Maryland. Went to work for a few hours and was supposed to fly to Detroit this weekend for business, but due to the weather in Maryland, we decided it was better for me to cancel Detroit (it made little sense to be grieving alone in my hotel room) and to get back to Maryland before the brunt of the storm is to hit. So today we are flying to hurricane-ville. Woohhoo.

    But we did see the tsunami warning last night before we went to bed. Crazy. Looks like bad news all around me this week.

  101. Danny said on October 28, 2012 at 11:38 am

    David C., I know you are probably being a little tongue-in-cheek, but I have to say that I’ve had the pleasure of working alongside some very competent accountants over the years and I have a lot of respect for them. And for that matter, the janitorial staff also gets my respect. Any job, well done, does.

    Funny side note. My civil engineering buddies in college had to take several classes in soils. They called it “dirt” class.

  102. Sherri said on October 28, 2012 at 11:47 am

    Prospero, I think that Lincecum could definitely follow the path of Eckersley. The Giants are saying that Lincecum is headed back to the rotation next year, but I’ve never believed that he would make it as a starter beyond age 30; pitchers his size almost never do unless they’re left-handers.

    I think Lincecum has the temperament to make the switch, and he has a pitching coach in Dave Righetti who, like Eckersley, went from being a starter to leading the league in saves.

  103. David C. said on October 28, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    Yes, Danny. A little. Accountants are professionals. But the bean counter mentality is a mental illness. I worked with some former Chrysler engineers. They told me that when they were developing the Omni/Horizon that the marketeers and engineers were pushing for a 5-speed manual transmission, which was standard in the Japanese cars of that time. The bean counters said a 3-speed was good enough and cost less by about 35 early ’70s dollars. They finally relented a bit and allowed them to develop a 4-speed. The reviewers of the time hated it because the gear ratios were so widely spaced and it wasn’t up the competition’s standards. They eventually relented and allowed them to develop a 5-speed. It was quite easy because the engineers made the shafts long enough and the case large enough for the extra gear.

  104. alex said on October 28, 2012 at 12:06 pm

    Sandy sure is a great little helper in the yard. When the wind blows from east to west, it’s a lot easier to corral two acres of ass-deep leaves.

  105. MichaelG said on October 28, 2012 at 12:34 pm

    Danny, a couple of years ago I was on a job site in Fresno. A 12,000 gallon underground fuel tank had recently been removed and we had a geo tech consultant there testing for contamination along with the county environmental guy who was along to monitor things. We had each helped ourselves to samples of soil from the excavator bucket and were smelling the soil for petroleum traces when the county guy suddenly burst out laughing. “My wife will never believe me when I tell her that I sniff dirt for a living.”

  106. basset said on October 28, 2012 at 12:44 pm

    DavidC, I am familiar with Ferris… Mrs. B. went there in the 70s and her family has a deer camp out near Woodville. If you walk around Nashville with a Ferris shirt on, people will ask you why it has a bulldog on it… Florida State having the same colors and a Native American mascot, they get confused.

    Accounting, not so much. I took the intro course at IU, got as far as the first test and didn’t even check my grade, just went straight to the dept. office and dropped the class.

  107. Danny said on October 28, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    MichaelG, too funny.

    Well on an even funnier note, our leg from Chicago to Baltimore is now cancelled. So it looks like we are going to drive from Chicago! Road trip, baby!

    And Deborah, when I was on the airlines’ website, I noticed they were cancelling flights to Lihue, Kahului, Honolulu, etc.

    Alex and Julie, happy belated birthday!

  108. Prospero said on October 28, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    What a strange turn of conversation. I was originally only pointing out that citing an MIT ME bachelor degree is no sort of proof Sununu isn’t a surly, ignorant, clearly bigoted old gray guy in a weird Marcel haircut who left DC in ignominious disgrace and has been dragged back to prominence inexplicably as Willy Windsock’s surrogate. My personal observations of years of working with people with similar backgrounds (though none was ever a Mel Thompson devotee that I know of). And as Sununu does with Powell, I will say that a lot of those folks were and remain good friends.

    The classic story of the intersection of MEs, beancounters and cars is the infamous Pinto memo, in which a cost benefit analysis led the company to forego design changes that would have cost around $10 per car, versus potential death, injury, mayhem, damage and resulting lawsuits, and found accepting the potential cost of lawsuits preferable. I imagine the engineers and designers fought this shit tooth and nail.

    Lincecum, despite his haircut and pot smoking is probably more like John Smoltz than Eck, and both are a lot bigger.

  109. Brandon said on October 28, 2012 at 4:01 pm

    Danny, Are you still in Hawaii? I just read that Hawaii is in the path of a major tsunami.

    The tsunami turned out to be just a minor wave surge.

    Updates here:
    http://www.bigislandvideonews.com/

  110. Deborah said on October 28, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    Danny sorry to hear about your Grandmother. Be safe on your road trip.

    I read that the waves along Lake Michigan are going to be 15 to 25 ft high, quite a spectacle that will be from the 27th floor on Lake Shore Dr. sorry I’m going to miss seeing that. I will be in Santa Fe for 4 more weeks before I return. Oh how I am loving it. Today we did yard work around the place we are renting, raked leaves etc. Yesterday we were out on the land in Abiquiu stripping dead pinons for firewood. Love all this physical activity.The weather here is fabulous, cool but sunny. Perfect.

  111. Prospero said on October 28, 2012 at 6:43 pm

    Damn, if the Loins ever get some D-backs, there will be hell to pay. Stafford is doing a Bobby Lane imitation in 4th Quarters.

  112. Dorothy said on October 28, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    Happy belated birthday to Alex, and my sympathies to you, Danny. I still miss my Grandma McCarthy and she died in 1971. I’m concerned more than a little about my daughter who is in Norfolk and dealing with the hurricane. The paper moved the deadline up by two hours tonight, it’s high tide and the paper also got a bunch of hotel rooms across the street from them. She’s probaby going to camp out there for the night. She mentioned maybe leaving at 2 or 3 AM but I am imploring her to stay put until daybreak at the least. She has a byline in tomorrow’s paper which is highly unusual for her. I look forward to reading it.

    And last but not least, happy early birthday to Julie!

  113. Prospero said on October 28, 2012 at 7:46 pm

    Funny Borowitz piece about Sandy forcing RMoney campaign to reallocate designated liars to other states:

    http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/borowitzreport/2012/10/weather-forces-romney-to-shift-lying-to-other-states.html

  114. brian stouder said on October 28, 2012 at 7:51 pm

    Dorothy – I forgot to mention that I like your striking new photo.

    Here’s wishing your (and everyone else’s) loved ones well, as Sandy does her thing

  115. Sherri said on October 28, 2012 at 8:11 pm

    The worst thing about Fox broadcasting the World Series is not Tim McCarver, as annoying as he is. The worst thing is Fox using the national anthem to promote their shows, rather than the teams getting to select the anthem singers. I’ve read that Aretha gets to sing tomorrow night if there’s a game five, but she should have done game 4, and I’m sure there were many, many better options than Demi Lovato, who sang tonight’s anthem.

  116. Minnie said on October 28, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    Dorothy, I’m adjacent to Norfolk out here in Virginia Beach. So far, the storm has been like a lengthy northeaster i.e. rain, wind and tidal flooding. Your daughter has probably told you that parts of Norfolk are subject to flooding, so it’s good business for the newspaper to house staff downtown during storms like this. Happy to hear that your daughter has a byline tomorrow. I’ll look for a an unfamiliar name and be sure to read the story. Any clues as to the topic or section? Sleep well. I’m sure your daughter is safe, if inconvenienced.

  117. basset said on October 28, 2012 at 8:44 pm

    So with what we have been told is some kind of huge storm approaching the east coast, the Weather Channel is doing what amounts to an extended Coast Guard recruiting commercial, CNN is running some bullshit about RMoney’s rise to power or something, and CNN Headline is showing us Dominick Dunne’s little round eyeglasses. I assume they are anyway, the show in the program guide has his name on it and that was as far as I could get.

    Usually the big 3 networks and CNN act like it’s the end of the world if New York City gets any kind of weather, this Hurricane Sandy must not be that big a deal.

  118. Deborah said on October 28, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    As some one who grew up in Miami, FL in the 60s and who lived through a couple of hurricanes by myself with my year older sister because our dad worked for the city of Miami Beach I can say this is all excting and scary as hell. I think it’s further up the coast but still, my thoughts are with you guys who live ou that way.

  119. Prospero said on October 28, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    Sherri, You’re dead on about the singers. Tiges in the Series, I wanted to see Jose reprise. And I like the M. Ward and Zooey Deschanel combo pretty well, but I don’t think the Kewpie has the voice for the anthem. But good Lord and Gutdom, McCarver is an insult to casual fans’ baseball intelligence. Can’t wait for a tedious explanation of the mysteries of a “two-plane” slider. Pompous tool.

    Anybody that know’s someone that claims to still be undecided about Pres2012 should convince them to read this TRB piece by Timothy Noah called The Romney Recession. Dispassionate and completely logical. And bloody franking scary. If the Windsock somehow wins, it is going to be both amusing and infuriating when GOPers continue blaming Obama for everything. If RMoney wins the popular and loses the electoral (which seems likely to me at this point) the intense whining will be stereo. I sorta wish the President had just gone ahead and parroted Noah’s analysis in the first debate. Slice and dice.

  120. brian stouder said on October 28, 2012 at 9:33 pm

    I think the term “undecided voter” is an oxymoron; a stop-gap term to statistically account for people who respond to the poll but who aren’t willing or ready to say who they will vote for.

    By definition, if you know you will vote, you know you will decide.

    If this race was between Mitt Romney and Evan Bayh (or another similarly empty-suited, over-blown Democratic nominee), I would be unexcited and unenthusiastic and unhappy…and if a pollster got in my grill, I’d say I was ‘undecided’ – despite that I would simply never miss an election, and that (in the end) there’s no earthly way I’d ever vote for Willard.

  121. Julie Robinson said on October 28, 2012 at 10:00 pm

    Thanks for all the early birthday wishes, and my sympathy to you, Danny. I’m supposed to fly Seattle-Chicago-Fort Wayne on Tuesday and I’m wondering if that will happen. Oh well, maybe I’ll stay longer, and my husband will have to figure out the purpose of that mystery room with the two white machines!

  122. basset said on October 28, 2012 at 10:47 pm

    >>a tedious explanation of the mysteries of a “two-plane” slider. Pompous tool.

    Indeed. Baseball is not rocket science, it is manual labor. Highly specialized manual labor, but still.

  123. Prospero said on October 28, 2012 at 11:41 pm

    Here’s a DNC ad dying to made and run in NC and PA.