It’s about that time…
Danny said on December 1, 2012 at 1:15 pm
The picture of the Christmas tree put me in remembrance of the map of the world according to redneck Australians.
Not really, but a buddy of mine from Australia shared this on FB this morning. Love the Tacos reference! Telstra is a big telecom for Australia, located in India in case you were wondering.
brian stouder said on December 1, 2012 at 2:23 pm
1. Is the bag by the back wheel a wreath, or is that the Charlie Brown Christmas tree?
2. Danny, I don’t really get the misogynistic “joke” that he repeats all around the globe – but then I guess I ain’t the sharpest tool in the shed.
3. Off to see Lincoln momentarily…after seeing it, I promise to limit my first reaction to four sentences (give or take)
Jolene said on December 1, 2012 at 2:36 pm
The Post has a great set of articles re the recipients of the Kennedy Center honors: David Letterman, Led Zeppelin, Dustin Hoffman, Buddy Guy, and Natalia Makarova.
Here’s the link to the Letterman article w/ others on the site: http://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/tv/david-letterman-2012-kennedy-center-honors/2012/11/29/fdc0b8b8-2e8b-11e2-9ac2-1c61452669c3_story.html
The article re Hoffman also has a great photo gallery. Made me think that it might be time for a Hoffman film festival. Lots of great movies I haven’t seen for a long time.
Danny said on December 1, 2012 at 2:43 pm
Brian, years ago I didn’t get it either, but apparently they use the word quite recreationally and not misogynistically (because it applies equally to both genders in their reckoning) down in Oz.
I made sure to let him know that our sole pleasure in the States is knowing that each time we flush our toilets counterclockwise, theirs spew a clockwise geyser of crap. The inevitability of Coriolis.
Jolene said on December 1, 2012 at 3:14 pm
Outtakes from Dan Zak’s interview w/ Letterman and associates: http://m.washingtonpost.com/blogs/arts-post/post/david-letterman-outtakes-from-his-kennedy-center-honors-interview/2012/11/30/a3df6510-3a6b-11e2-a263-f0ebffed2f15_blog.html
Deborah said on December 1, 2012 at 3:16 pm
Ho ho ho, I got my Christmas present today, a new MacBook Pro. My previous laptop was about 10 years old and slow as molasses. I got a 13″ with 8GB of RAM. I had a 17″ one previously and it was way to heavy, and they don’t even make that size anymore. This one will be better for traveling back and forth between NM and Chicago. This is for using when I have freelance projects, I still have my iPad and iPhone for recreational use. I opted out of getting one of those retina versions they were much more expensive and I don’t think I’ll really need that for what I do. I hope I’m not sorry about that. I’m about to load the Creative Suite onto this baby.
Deborah said on December 1, 2012 at 3:17 pm
edit: too heavy
nancy said on December 1, 2012 at 3:42 pm
It’s a rosemary plant, Brian. Our old one died.
Basset said on December 1, 2012 at 4:10 pm
I brought our tree home from Newaygo County after deer camp, wrapped in a plastic poncho inside the Subaru… Mrs. B’s dad has a grove of them on the family farm, long overgrown and neglected since the kids moved away. Got a live seedling in a pot, too, gotta get that planted.
Danny said on December 1, 2012 at 4:15 pm
Yes, Deborah. I made the move to 13.3″ years ago (PC though) because I was so tired of slogging a 10 lbs lapper around. I’ve got a Viao Z which I love and am waiting til they get 1 TB SSD drives (prolly two 512’s in striped array) before I upgrade.
Brian, one other thing occurred to me. For context, my buddy from Oz, Ian, is a huge liberal who also happens to have a very bawdy sense of humor. He is not a racist, misogynistic right-winger, but I still love him anyway.
Judybusy said on December 1, 2012 at 5:09 pm
That is one huge rosemary plant. I’ll have to buy a new one too; my 3- or 4-year-old one bit the dust when I brought it in this year. It is runty and stunted, though, as we are always taking snippets for cooking.
I have a co-worker who lived in New Zealand. They also use the c-word pretty casually. He also taught me the phrase “switched on” to described someone who is sharp.
Completely off topic, I can highly recommend the book, The Master by Colm Toibin; it’s a novel about the writer Henry James. Lovely prose, full of wonderfully realized vignettes of his life. I will now tear myself away from the internet and return to Lamb House–where James moved in the late 1890s–, which is now on my places to visit list.
brian stouder said on December 1, 2012 at 6:22 pm
1. What a marvelous movie!
2. Had me choked up numerous times; a genuinely affecting movie – and indeed, fair to Mary – which was the one test I had coming in.
3. And what a great cast!
4. Took Grant and Shelby with me; for the price of steaks all around (or for the equivalent admission price to a Lincoln Colloquium) the young folks and I got to see indispensable (and not very distantly past) American history brought to life and relevance. (I can see now why Spielberg decided to await ’til after our late election, to release his quintessentially political movie)
And – that appears to be one major rosemary plant!
brian stouder said on December 1, 2012 at 6:24 pm
Forgot to say – I bet that Christmas tree smells marvelous! It’s been years since we’ve put a real one up, and I think the holiday aroma is the most affecting thing about them
JWfromNJ said on December 1, 2012 at 7:53 pm
About five years ago we bought a Martha Stewart prelighted tree that looks nice. Every year I pine for a “real” tree but Florida is very expensive and I’m a noted cheapskate. We did score a 24-piece set of glass ornaments for $5.95 at Home Depot which are deemed “shatter resistant” but I’m betting on our cat. We also got a 72 piece set of assorted ornaments (Martha Stewart again) for $12. The next step in my decor plan in to pay multiple visits to my Bank as TD Bank’s candy this month is green and white candy canes and the girls at the bank don’t care if I snatch 12 at a time.
Nowhere done shopping – got a few things on the boy’s list, a few things for my daughter, and my wife’s desired Kindle Fire HD. Then I can wipe her computer and turn off all the idiototic FB apps and some malware – I clean it off once a week but she manages to keep getting PC VD. Going to roll it back to XP and use a hacked version that is like a honey badger… it don’t care.
Sherri said on December 1, 2012 at 7:59 pm
Hey Danny, something we agree on! I have a Vaio Z laptop, too, and I’m waiting for the next redesign before I upgrade. I love the Z – lightweight, fast, gorgeous screen.
Prospero, sorry about your Dawgs. Painful way to lose the game.
Deborah said on December 1, 2012 at 8:12 pm
I think I mentioned this before but we bought a small live Austrian pine to be our christmas tree in Santa Fe. We bought it at Home Depot way back in early November, not that we planned to buy it that early, we were just shopping for power tools and got sidetracked. Then when we got it home we realized there was no way we would be able to keep it alive inside until after the holidays and possibly until spring to plant. So we planted it right away and decided to just put lights on it out there and we’d be able to see that from the window and that would be our Christmas tree. It took us 3 hours to dig the hole to plant the tree, the ground was so hard packed, and not because it was frozen because the weather has been very unseasonably warm there. We are going to get a tiny rosemary tree for inside and hopefully can keep that alive until spring to plant outside. We have lived in high-rises for so many years that having a Christmas tree is rare for us. The last one we had was 1991 or so. It just doesn’t make sense to have a tree in a high-rise. Getting them in and out is a huge operation. Over the years we’ve come up with much simpler decorations that don’t involve messy pine needles and major logistical headaches. Living on the ground out there is a novelty.
Danny said on December 1, 2012 at 8:18 pm
Brian, your take on the Lincoln movie was my litmus test. With all of your reading over the the years and attending of lectures, I figure you to be our in-house Lincoln scholar.
Sherri, don’t forget our substantial agreement on pensions a few weeks back! Yeah, I’ve been looking at the recent Z’s, but I’ve been a little hesitant to take the SSD plunge. One of my friends says that they sometimes mysteriously scramble all of your bits. Also, as lame as this sounds, the recent Z’s don’t have the leather cover option that adheres to the machine like I have on mine (probably due to the sheet battery).
Danny said on December 1, 2012 at 8:22 pm
Hilarious about the XP rollback (honey badger), JW. I guess that’s the other reason I haven’t upgraded yet. Looks like I’ll go Windows 7. Just did a 3TB RAID 1 fileserver in my home with W7 and it seems very nice, not too annoying.
Sherri said on December 1, 2012 at 8:43 pm
My Z is almost 4 years old, and I’ve got a 128GB SSD that I’ve never had a bit of trouble with. SSD makes program startup nice and zippy, and the laptop much quieter; no disk noise. The current Z design can’t run Windows 8 because of the external dock. I’ve considered buying one of the remaining Win 7 Z’s (I’ve been running Win 7 on my current Z), but I don’t really like the external dock, either. I like having a built-in optical drive.
beb said on December 1, 2012 at 9:13 pm
My laptop has Win 7. I would so love to replace it with an OS that worked, you know – XP.
JWfromNJ said on December 1, 2012 at 9:24 pm
Danny – I’m a big Win7 fan. I actually hosted a Win7 launch party they send a crate of party favors, Win7 shopping bags, a giftcard to be used for snacks, etc. And I got a free “STeve Balmer” untimate edition which I can use unlimited times.
I’m not interested in 8 because I think it’s more of a tablet OS.
But my wife’s ACER which I just put a SSD in last month would run great on this hacked XP system that I run on my homemade media server (old Indianpolis school compaq). And with the stripped out code it is less vulnerable to malware, and I’m going to turn that into my 13-year old’s PC for school and limited apps, and turn off the dammed game emulators he keeps turning on. The Kindle fire will be great for my wife – but since the only books she reads are (uggggghhhhhh) james paterson and his army of ghost writeres I doubt she will download any books – unless Nicholas Sparks has a new novel.
MichaelG said on December 1, 2012 at 10:21 pm
I just got a new computer with Windows 8. I liked 7 and wanted to get it with my new box but the manufacturers are forcing purchasers into 8. The most desirable options are only available with Windows 8 machines and I finally capitulated. Windows 8 has the feel of an interim system. Microsoft is trying to fit small machines with touch screen action and desk top and lap top machines with device (mouse) inputs into the same system and the result is a kluge. It seems to have one foot on the dock and one foot on the boat. I have a desk top machine and 8 takes more mouse clicks and more movement to accomplish a desired action than did 7. It frustrates the shit out of me and I’ve said many bad words. It’s going to take me forever to get all the extraneous bullshit cleaned up and cleaned out and to get the machine configured as I like it. Progress.
Danny said on December 1, 2012 at 10:34 pm
As far as I can tell, Win8 is son of Vista. I have no desire for it.
JW, are you running XP Black? I’ve heard of it over the years through slashdot and 2600, but never tried it.
Sherri said on December 1, 2012 at 10:53 pm
Win8 is better than Vista, which had performance issues. But it is an awkward system for non-touch systems, and not well-integrated yet. My husband has been using it for a while, but it takes getting used to. I’m in no hurry to switch from Win7, which I like better than XP.
But I’m also still holding back on updating my iPhone to iOS 6, because I’m not willing to give up Google maps…
Connie said on December 1, 2012 at 11:43 pm
This will be our third year with no Christmas tree, due to a long skinny living room with no place to put one. It makes matters worse that my husband’s cousin has a tree farm on the other half of the old farm in Cadillac and we can get a live tree free. We order before Thanksgiving and my brother-in-law hauls them down to Flint when he comes for turkey.
MichaelG said on December 1, 2012 at 11:58 pm
“. . . but it takes getting used to” Exactly. Why should a long term Windows user have to go through a complete re-education process to use an upgraded operating system? I never used Vista but have heard the stories. At least 8 works, however clunky it may be. I’ve had no lock ups, punts, failures or genuine problems. Yet. And don’t get me started on Office 2010.
Bob (not Greene) said on December 2, 2012 at 1:07 am
Hey, I think Georgia played tonight. Anyone know how they did? Basset?
Sherri said on December 2, 2012 at 1:59 am
Alabama 32, Georgia 28. Georgia had the ball inside the 10 as time expired.
Dexter said on December 2, 2012 at 3:01 am
Sherri…Georgia battled hard but choked at the end. That receiver caught the football when he was hit and falling…all he had to do was bat it down and let the QB have another chance for a pass into the end zone. He had to know this…I hate to see a team lose like that, due to incompetence. I had the feeling all night that Alabama was destined to win, because that team has talent. Go Notre Dame! It’s a pity we have to wait almost until baseball starts to have the damn game played.
Sherri said on December 2, 2012 at 3:54 am
Dex, the QB should have spiked the ball and stopped the clock to give Georgia a chance to huddle up and set up two plays in the end zone, instead of snapping the ball and throwing the ball short of the end zone and hoping to run it in. Hard to blame the receiver for the instinctual play, when the QB should have made the smart play.
Joe K said on December 2, 2012 at 8:42 am
Excellent point Sherri,
Isn’t there someone on this board that is a big Georgia fan? Seems to know everything. Huh, haven’t heard a peep.
Prospero said on December 2, 2012 at 10:00 am
Well, actually I was watching the game. I can’t see that last play as a QB failure. Spiking the ball is the coach’s decision, probably the OC in this case. So as usual, Bobo will get fried in the Atlanta papers’ football blogs. That was the best football game I’ve seen in a few years. The line I’ve seen for Bama-ND is 10-1/2, and I say Bama covers. Three games running against cut-blocking O-lines is brutal, but GT and Southern were small guys doing the damage. Something about cut block schemes from 320 lbers. seems ridiculous to me. That’s why the NFL is banning blocking below the waist next season. Bulldogs certainly played very well and left nothing on the field. What’s ludicrous is that FLA will probably move past UGA into a BCS bowl game, despite being smoked by Georgia. Yeah, thqt makes a lot of sense. Jeez Joe, I can’t help it if some of y’all mistake taking strongly stated opinions for “knowing everything”. Oh, and Aaron Murray had a better game throwing vs. Alabama than J. Manziel, who all the TV mushmouths are annointing as the greatest player ever. Actually, the only opinion I expressed about this game ahead of time was that people making Bama a prohibitive favorite didn’t know what they were talking about. That was pretty obviously proven on the field.
Prospero said on December 2, 2012 at 10:03 am
Dexter, if you had the feeling from the first 28 minutes that Bama was going to win, what game were you watching? I knew the game was trouble when I heard Vern and Gary D announcing. They actively root for UGA’s opponents when they do Georgia games, and have been doing so for years.
basset said on December 2, 2012 at 10:08 am
Bob, I don’t follow football, sorry… I was out deer hunting and missing a monster buck I should have dropped. Going to the range this morning to practice and see what I did wrong… I did change the kind of ammunition I was using without resetting the sights and thought I could get away with it, maybe not.
After that, pickin’ and singin’ in an 1839 house on the river bluffs, everyone brings a dish and an instrument. Good times.
brian stouder said on December 2, 2012 at 11:09 am
You know, I watched the last few minutes of that game, despite not really being a college football fan. The energy level was high and both teams looked good, and plays (going both ways) were being executed. I knew this was the game Pros and Sherri had been talking about, but I confess I couldn’t remember which team each was rooting for…until now!
Anyway, it was good stuff
Prospero said on December 2, 2012 at 11:20 am
Not spiking the football was OC Mike Bobo’s call.
Charlotte said on December 2, 2012 at 11:56 am
We thought about going up to cut a tree today, but the wind is blowing 40-hurricane here today, and it’s raining. Hard to slide the tree downhill without snow … (plus, we usually see wolf tracks up where we cut trees, the highlight of it all for me).
MichaelG said on December 2, 2012 at 12:11 pm
Georgia looked rushed and confused on the last play. Bad call not to have spiked. Cal lost a game to Oregon State on a similar play several years ago. It was the beginning of Tedford’s decline. That’s going to be a hell of a long layoff between yesterday and the championship game.
We have had a pretty good storm over the last day or so. Gusts to 50 MPH, heavy rain. At one point this AM (according to the Channel Three weather people) it was raining at the rate of ½ inch every ten minutes. My sat TV reception was totally attenuated (washed out) for several minutes. In the midst of all this is the running of the California International Marathon which was expected to draw 15,000 runners. Wonder how many are actually out there. The winner is expected at the finish in another ten or fifteen minutes.
Prospero said on December 2, 2012 at 12:26 pm
Also, it’s cold comfort and lame consolation, but I did get UGA and 7 from a bunch of overconfident Bama fans and made enough cash for all my Christmas shopping in one day without lifting a finger or doing a lick of work. Also, the Dogs were playing without a 6-4 and a 6-5 receiver (not an excuse) that Bama’s D-backs could not have covered in the endzone.
The problem on the last play was that it was designed for a back shoulder attempt in the back corner of the endzone, but an Alabama D-lineman tipped the ball at the line of scrimmage. Had the pass gone off smoothly, Malcolm Mitchell was open.
Sherri said on December 2, 2012 at 12:53 pm
Whether it was the OC’s fault or the QB’s fault, it’s still a bad call. It’s one thing to try to do that with 30 seconds left, but there just wasn’t enough time left. You get the benefit of Alabama being confused, but the risk of you being confused as well, and it’s a all or nothing strategy. I think Bobo’s just crazy to think he can get three snaps out of that situation more than 10% of the time, and he risks losing two snaps too often. Spiking the ball is more reliably going to give you two snaps after the spike.
Taking Georgia and the points was a smart bet, though, Pros; I thought the spread was too high. Georgia is a talented team. I just never pick Mark Richt to beat Nick Saban.
(Les Miles is a different story. Les Miles is the luckiest man in America. I don’t know how many games I’ve seen Les Miles win that he deserved to lose, the most egregious case being the Tennessee game a couple of years ago.)
Prospero said on December 2, 2012 at 1:06 pm
One of these days Saban will pay the price for his revolting practices of oversigning and grayshirting, while being all whited sepulcher holier than thou about it. Had Marlon Brown and Michael Bennett not been hurt and unavailable, UGA would probably have won. And Sabsan screwed up the clock at the end of the first half pretty badly.
Danny said on December 2, 2012 at 1:23 pm
Brian, you and I should start gambling on college football in our respective office pools at our earliest convenience. We both seem to have minds that are uncluttered by deceiving statistics and be possession of a clarity that only comes by a severe lacking depth of knowledge … and it is these characteristics that tend to lend to winning these things.
Dexter said on December 2, 2012 at 1:32 pm
prospero…Georgia was ahead, but never backed up a great play with a killer follow up; they always let Saban’s bunch hang around. I just felt like Alabama was going to win when the Bulldog’s QB had his receiver way ahead of the cornerback and underthrew the pass by about 15 feet and Alabama intercepted it. That would have been a dagger that might have slain the dragon.
Now Sherri, that last sequence…Georgia’s QB did indeed take a shot at the end zone…that pass was tipped, and caught by the guy who had no chance to get into the end zone…that pass was not the boneheaded play, and if the receiver at the goal line would have had a chance at it, it might have been a game winning TD, or, the QB would have had a full 4 seconds left to get a play off, and not a hail Mary, just an honest chance to find a tall receiver to catch a pass for the win. When that last pass was tipped, even a Pop Warner kid would have known that pass had to hit the ground to stop the damn clock.
I am recording the Lions game because I will not waste my time in real time watching Andrew Luck dismantle the Lions. The Lions…I have been a fan for 41 years now and had 41 years of disappointments. The only giddiness I ever felt was watching Billy Sims and later Barry Sanders kick ass, and watching Eric Cramer dismantle the Cowboys in that January playoff game in 1992, then go to RFK and only have the Redskins slaughter the Lions. That’s as good as it ever got, until Scott Mitchell came in from Miami and ran the track meet offense by finding Herman Moore, Robert Perriman, and Johnny Morton down the field…now that was fun to watch, and Wayne-O Fontes nearly always got “us” to the playoffs with those 10-6 and 9-7 records. Since then…until last year’s 5-0 start…not too much.
Catherine said on December 2, 2012 at 1:44 pm
I’m glad and relieved that Brian’s review of Lincoln is so positive!
We saw Argo (a little behind the curve). Does anyone know how historically accurate the movie is? And what the “Houseguests” went on to do as diplomats? I should google it but all I turn up my initial results is fawning interviews with Affleck about his “process.”
brian stouder said on December 2, 2012 at 1:59 pm
Catherine – my goal is not to blather and gush; but suffice it to say – I really, really, really loved that movie.
Plus, the 2:40 Saturday matinee was about 1/2 full, and the Rave/Car-Mike stadium theater had it at multiple screens – and folks were streaming into the other theater when I made a re-fill run.
In my whole life, I’ve paid first-run theater price to see a movie again once…or maybe twice. Since only the young folks and I caught Lincoln, I will surely do this again with Pam, to see Lincoln.
The subject of our 16th president could easily overwhelm any movie, and yet Spielberg’s move, while long, has a compelling narrative with a beginning and a middle and an end.
I’ll cop to thinking “uh oh” at the very outset, when it looked like we were headed into the land of Hollywood cheese, but the movie swiftly takes off and then flies
Sherri said on December 2, 2012 at 2:34 pm
I’d like to thank the rest of you for subsidizing my sports watching habit: http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/cotown/la-fi-1202-ct-sports-cost-20121202,0,5996855,full.story
Jolene said on December 2, 2012 at 3:01 pm
Brian, as you might guess, Ta-Nehisi Coates has some interesting comments about Lincoln. Mainly, he is concerned that the movie doesn’t capture enough of the evolution of Lincoln’s thinking from his support for colonization of freed blacks to the more egalitarian views portrayed in the movie. Coates’s concern is that the movie doesn’t fully acknowledge the radicalism of equal rights in that era, thus minimizing the courage and correctness of those who fought for them. He still likes the movie, but the view is interesting and more complex than I am portraying here. Best to go to his blog, scroll down to “Some Quick Thoughts on ‘Lincoln“, posted on 11/29, and then scroll up to see his later, more fully thought out views in two later posts.
Also worth noting is Eric Foner’s letter to the editor in the NYT, which makes a related point re aspects of the history of the Thirteenth Amendment mot portrayed in the movie.
brian stouder said on December 2, 2012 at 4:51 pm
Jolene, thanks for the links; marvelously good stuff! As always, Coates is right…and you gotta love that he drops David Simon’d name into his essay (husband of friend-of-NN.c Laura Lippman, the one author who seduces me into reading fiction!).
Who can disagree, when Coates says:
With that said, the movies take on radicalism is a problem. And it’s not just a political problem, but an artistic one. I think we should steer away from dictating to artists which stories they should tell, but once someone commits to a story, then it becomes fair to then judge them on it. The story Kushner and Spielberg commit to is the legislative process involved in passing the 13th amendment. Lincoln at that point is at his most radical, but you don’t get any sense at all that he was once a conservative, who was actually wrong about stuff.
Coates is right, of course; and you can STILL read histories of that day that heap just as much scorn on ‘radicals’ as upon the fire-eaters and flatly racist war-Democrats (like Douglas) who thought nothing of heaving invectives like “black Republicanism” upon people like Lincoln.
My rejoinder to Coates would is two-fold:
1. Good God in Heaven – isn’t it great to see such a crucial bit of American societal/governmental/ historical development plopped right into the mainstream of modern American culture? I cannot think of anything quite as positively affirmative as this particular movie, at this particular time in our shared history. And indeed, the entirely arbitrary structure of the movie – focusing on the fight in congress to pass the amendment – gives the movie shape and form, and makes it possible to exist…rather than an incomprehensible (and finally unfilmable and/or un-watchable) sinkhole of contradictions and complexities – such as Hollywood occasionally swerves into (think Heaven’s Gate…or maybe, on a more positive note, Apocalypse Now)
2. regarding Lincoln’s shortcomings and sins against modern political sensibilities – granted. I might argue that the scene where the president speaks to Ms Keckley on the porch of the White House made me think specifically of his pronouncements about colonization,
(here’s a little background http://www.sj-r.com/top-stories/x1512119596/Lincoln-more-committed-to-black-colonization-than-believed-author-says )
and indeed the scandal that he got involved in (several folks made lots of money off Uncle Sam, for a flatly fraudulent land deal, which the president avidly supported), related to his deep, long-standing doubts that racial co-existence could proceed.
But my fall-back is always to quote Fredrick Douglass himself, on the matter of Lincoln’s racial attitudes, in a speech Douglass gave years after the war, at a dedication of a memorial in Washington*:
I have said that President Lincoln was a white man, and shared the prejudices common to his countrymen towards the colored race. Looking back to his times and to the condition of his country, we are compelled to admit that this unfriendly feeling on his part may be safely set down as one element of his wonderful success in organizing the loyal American people for the tremendous conflict before them, and bringing them safely through that conflict. His great mission was to accomplish two things: first, to save his country from dismemberment and ruin; and, second, to free his country from the great crime of slavery. To do one or the other, or both, he must have the earnest sympathy and the powerful cooperation of his loyal fellow-countrymen. Without this primary and essential condition to success his efforts must have been vain and utterly fruitless. Had he put the abolition of slavery before the salvation of the Union, he would have inevitably driven from him a powerful class of the American people and rendered resistance to rebellion impossible. Viewed from the genuine abolition ground, Mr. Lincoln seemed tardy, cold, dull, and indifferent; but measuring him by the sentiment of his country, a sentiment he was bound as a statesman to consult, he was swift, zealous, radical, and determined.
Though Mr. Lincoln shared the prejudices of his white fellow-countrymen against the Negro, it is hardly necessary to say that in his heart of hearts he loathed and hated slavery. The man who could say, “Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war shall soon pass away, yet if God wills it continue till all the wealth piled by two hundred years of bondage shall have been wasted, and each drop of blood drawn by the lash shall have been paid for by one drawn by the sword, the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether,” gives all needed proof of his feeling on the subject of slavery. He was willing, while the South was loyal, that it should have its pound of flesh, because he thought that it was so nominated in the bond; but farther than this no earthly power could make him go.
I think Douglass was as right as any mortal can be.
*Michael Burlingame, whose magnum opus is Abraham Lincoln; A Life, a genuinely wonderful and extensive biography of the 16th president which I read and enjoyed, himself is nonetheless WRONG about Lincoln’s racial attitudes (I think) and also wrong about Mary Lincoln; in fact I had the chance to argue a point or two with him at Springfield – and it would be great to see Coates go after Burlingame – but we digress!
Jolene said on December 2, 2012 at 5:36 pm
Brian, on #1′ Coates would agree w/ you. He notes that the movie brought him to tears and recommends it to others. On #2, great quote from Frederick Douglass. To my shame, I have never read his autobiography. Guess it’s time to do that.
Deborah said on December 2, 2012 at 5:45 pm
I want to see three current movies which is rare for me to find that many at the same time these days: Lincoln, The Sessions and Hitchcock.
It is going to be 67 degrees tomorrow in Chicago, on Dec 3rd! What is wrong with this picture? It was 60+ today too. Crazy (and scary).
Dexter said on December 2, 2012 at 6:06 pm
Deborah…I figure the weather will catch up with us soon enough. I just did a ten-miler on my cross bike, until darkness forced me back home. This morning the streets were filled with runners, this evening the sidewalks were loaded with dog walkers. I noticed more than a few pooches I had never seen before.
Dexter said on December 2, 2012 at 6:11 pm
Oh gawd…I just saw where the Lions did it again…I guess I’ll have to review my recording of the game, but quickly.
Little Bird said on December 2, 2012 at 6:14 pm
Is anyone here familiar with The Little Drummer Boy Challenge? From Thanksgiving to Christmas Eve, if you don’t hear that song, you have won. Nothing but bragging rights, but it’s all in good fun. I got hit this afternoon two steps into the local “mall”. Oh well, maybe next year.
Prospero said on December 2, 2012 at 6:23 pm
With the perfection of hindsight, it’s easy to see the Georgia coaches screwed up by not spiking the ball. The implication that the players on the fiield messed up is ridiculous, and shows a lack of understanding of what it’s like to actually play football. I also think where UGA lost cohesion and where things got out of hand was when the refs botched the “interception” call on a ball that was obviously on the ground from the getgo, and I think some time was lost in the review process. I’m left with the feeling that it’s highly unlikely that the NCG will be as riveting as the SECCG, nor is it likely to be played at such a high level. I would bet the farm that vs. ND, Bama will be called for more than one penalty (and that 5 yds. halfway through the 3rd Q. And if a Bama player assaults Everett Golson the way Murray was hit five seconds after throwing a pass, there will be hell to pay, especially after Ogletree drew a penalty for a legal hit on the Bama QB which saved them from a three and out and preceded their first TD. Danielson made clucking noises about helmet to helmet, but I’ve watched the play three more times and ‘Tree led with his hands, not his helmet. And it is football. Bullshit call.
I really want to see Silver Linings Playbook. The Hitchcock movie reviews have been so-so, but Sir Anthony and Dame Helen in the same movie? I’m there. And Scarlett Johannsen in the shower.
We have a week in the 70s forecast, and the Ocean is 64 degrees, very high for December.
Julie Robinson said on December 2, 2012 at 6:31 pm
Coates makes some good points, but remember the movie only covers the last few months of Lincoln’s life. American attention spans being so short, it would have been difficult to cram in much more material. I hope it will inspire viewers to learn more about the issues. It did for me, and I was thoroughly steeped in all things Lincoln as a child growing up in Illinois. Who knows, in 30 years a presidential candidate just might point to this movie as the moment of their political awakening.
Prospero said on December 2, 2012 at 7:47 pm
Lions had to work hard for that loss. Stafford outplayed Luck, Lions had three INTs, a 68 yd. run from local hero Joique Bell (since when does Wayne State play football. And the winning score was on a 4th and 10, with time running out. And Megatron had 13 catches for 170something. That is brutal.
Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 2, 2012 at 8:08 pm
Brian, whatever the source of the criticism, Coates or any other wise and thoughtful reviewer, I’m baffled by complaints that radicalism isn’t portrayed strongly or clearly enough. My read of both the history, such as I can claim to understand it dimly, and of the movie, is that the Thaddeus Stevens conundrum is a major subtext of the reality let alone the film: the mean, nasty, unpleasant jerk was the most correct person in the room most of the time. How do you do politics in light of that recurrent reality?
If anything, Tommy Lee Jones & Spielberg made Stevens more reasonable and convivial than he (apparently) actually was; Garrison was a piece of work, and Beecher . . . well, read “The Most Famous Man in America.” He was absolutely right about slavery and equality, and unambiguously so in public and in private, while Lincoln kept trying to make the center hold. The Radical Republicans were moralistic, self-righteous, and seemingly indifferent to broader political trends, as well as personal motivations.
Anyhow, Stevens is likely to get a well-deserved resurgence; I could hope for a further interest in Frederick Douglass and his “Narrative of My Life” — http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/23
brian stouder said on December 2, 2012 at 9:13 pm
The movie made our 14 year old cry, despite that she’s a tough girl – and (as she said) despite that she knew how it was going to come out.
Plus, it made me cry, too – but I’m turning into an old guy who clouds up at practically everything, anymore!
Sherri said on December 3, 2012 at 12:10 am
My final football comment of the weekend: I think I’m in love with Russell Wilson.
MichaelG said on December 3, 2012 at 12:27 am
Little Bird, I’m with you. I pray to the music gods every year to not hear the Little Drummer Boy. Sorry you had to lose so soon. Hope it’s the only time.
Bottom line. Alabama rushed for over 300 yards. A couple of tackles here or there and GA might have won. Learn to stop the run and come back next year.
Prospero said on December 3, 2012 at 9:39 am
MichaelG: Too true. I figured the players got enamored of the Rambo strip and 50 yd. fumble return against GT and were trying to strip the ball instead of wrapping up for much of the game. But it also seems gratutitous that a huge O-line like Alabama’s spends so much time blocking below the waist. Kinda bush league. And UGA threw for 265 on Bama. So I guess they weren’t so staunch against the pass, either.
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