And so, 10 days or so after having a surgical procedure I still hesitate to describe bluntly, lest the few remaining readers of this blog barf and run screaming for the exits, it’s back to work.
I’m still, as Marsellus Wallace said, pretty far from OK, but I’m mending. The redness in my eye is gone (thanks, prednisone) although the pupil remains dilated (atropine eyedrops) and will for another few days. Still basically blind on that side, but I’m assured this will resolve itself. I’ve started driving again, gingerly — short hops only. I did a little freeway piece on Sunday in light traffic, but it was jarring enough that I’m putting that aside for a while. The depth perception I’m growing used to, but the blind side is still too dangerous for the sort of combat-driving conditions one can expect on a Detroit interstate.
But I’m hale and hearty enough that we threw a little dinner party Saturday, and I managed not to fall into the grill or anything. (I had a hell of a time getting my mascara wand back into the tube this morning, however.) So Monday I’m back at it. Which is today.
I’m still feeling a little giddy about being sprung from facedown life, frankly. The night of the day I was cleared to stand up, I went to bed early, swallowing two ibuprofen and a melatonin on the way. I slept like a corpse for eight hours and rose feeling 10 years younger, or maybe 15. Recovery, even from something minor like a cold, always gives you that ESCAPED AGAIN feeling of having beaten something, and you walk around grateful for everything from a warm breeze to a hot cup of coffee. I hope it lasts, although I know it won’t.
So a lot happened last week.
I’m amazed that so few media outlets, in their coverage of the Cleveland kidnapping cases, are failing to mention, or mentioning only obliquely, the case of Ariel Castro’s daughter, now serving a 25-year sentence in Indiana for attempting to slash the throat of her own 11-month-old daughter. As one of you noted in the comments last week, it seems there’s a long history of craziness in that clan, or maybe it’s just, in the trite phrase, a history of violence.
One of the movies I watched during my facedown recovery — or started to watch, but didn’t finish — was “Goon,” a comedy about a hockey enforcer. The decent cast did what they could, and it had promise, but like so many Apatow-influenced movie projects these days, failed to find its way. Funny is funny, but there’s only so much you can do with one punchout after another, and I abandoned it around the 30-minute mark. Reading about the late Derek Boogaard in the New York Times a year or so ago sort of spoiled hockey goons for me for good. His family is now suing the NHL, which will be an interesting case to watch.
Finally, enjoy: A video made for the bid to get Detroit selected as the next X Games venue. Very well-done in the usual manner, which is to say every rust stain is a brushstroke of paint on our ruined masterpiece of a city, etc. But inspiring in its own way:
So we’re back, we’re all back, and let’s see how the week goes, eh?
Dexter said on May 13, 2013 at 2:25 am
Welcome back to the good side of life. Detroit is a happy camp as the beloved Red Wings beat down the stinking Anaheim Ducks and will now play the Black Hawks from Chicago. A Black Hawk sounds more formidable than a damn duck, so we’ll see. Personally, I hate the Black Hawks. Sorry, Professor Borden, if you are a hockey fan. I have many friends who love the Black Hawks and would love to shove a few losses down their throats.
My brother in Waterloo, Indiana, which is my hometown and also a magnet for all sorts of murderous creeps, is also like Marsellus Wallace today, far from okay. The police came to visit him during an investigation. His immediate neighbor’s house was broken into and trashed all to hell, and everything of any value was stolen. But they were quiet enough that my brother heard nothing.
alex said on May 13, 2013 at 6:13 am
Woke up at 4:30 and thought I’d do a little reading and go back to bed. The adrenaline jolt from that video still has me up. And then reading about Ariel Castro gave me heebies on top of my adrenaline. Shit, this is better than caffeine.
We had a frost warning last night and covered all the plants, but I’m glad to see it was for naught just the same. I hope this sucky spring portends a cooler summer than the last one, but I wouldn’t mind if it stayed on the drier side and kept the mosquitoes to a minimum.
Funny coincidence. There’s a Michael Franks song playing called “Now That the Summer’s Here.” Really? Then why am I freezing my ass off?
ROGirl said on May 13, 2013 at 7:04 am
If someone in the Castro family had reported the perpetrator years ago maybe the crazy would have stopped then, or wouldn’t have spread to the next generation (witnessing abuse + crazy = learned behavior).
JWfromNJ said on May 13, 2013 at 7:49 am
I’ve grilled plenty of times with one eye open, but for self-induced medical issues. Sad to say that while no one here misses the pickled me, they do miss my “inspired,” culinary skills. The deconstructed Reuben still comes up in conversation.
welcome back Nancy.
Suzanne said on May 13, 2013 at 7:54 am
Hope the healing continues, and really, maybe driving on a busy interstate is better if you can’t see half the road.
Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on May 13, 2013 at 8:11 am
Glad you are well and healing briskly. Hat tip to the surgical team – it’s amazing what they can do to eyes and sinuses these days.
Had an interesting conversation with a fellow professional of similar age who had/has a job offer in downtown Detroit, and was basically thinking “if my wife and I didn’t have middle school age children, it’s something I’d love to try.” He and I both admitted the largely secondhand information we were debating, but his main point was “I think Detroit is going to recover soon, not to what it was, but to shift into something new moving forward that would be fascinating and a little scary to be a part of.” He said that commuting didn’t bother him, but he couldn’t imagine making enough to live somewhere like where we live now (here in exurb Ohio) unless it meant driving from Ann Arbor to Detroit. I asked if he’d looked at the Grosse Points, and he quickly dismissed that as unfeasible for his income. It wasn’t the time to argue, nor do I have info to do so, but I have the impression that a midlevel manager with a high five figure income could find a decent place to live in Nancy’s neck of the woods. Am I correct in that general impression? Just curious.
nancy said on May 13, 2013 at 8:17 am
Your friend would be astounded at what he can buy in GP; the collapse really opened up the market. I don’t know what he earns, but we like to think we offer a simulacrum of small-town life 15 minutes from three major-league sports facilities. And we do.
beb said on May 13, 2013 at 8:36 am
Congratulations on your return to near normalcy.
Looking for some cheering news (there’s none in the newspapers), a week ago the family went out to the Kensington metro park, looked at a bunch of month old goats, smelled some 600 pound hogs and moved on to the Nature Center. There are wooden stairs leading down from the parking lot to some of the hiking trails. A family of groundhogs had taken up living in the spaces under the steps. For a time they would poke their heads out of the ends of the steps to see what the hubbub was all about, not realizing that they were the hubbub.
One of the trails leads out to a boardwalk around the edge of one of the lakes there. We saw a nesting swan who had sited her nest about 40 feet from the boardwalk. It was just far enough away that she wasn’t bother by the people stopping to stare. We also saw some cranes and feeding herons. There’s an island maybe a hundred yards out with lots of tall trees. I counted about 15 nests in the tops of the trees (leaves hadn’t come out yet). At least one nest had a sitting female and her mate was dropping out of the tree, swooping down to find some food and climbing back into the air to land on the nest and feet her. There was a good breeze that day so we could see the male spread his wings and hover in the air for a moment before touching down. God, that was fun.
Then we ran into a friend from our side of time, totally unexpected.
Then we went home. That was a fun day.
Julie Robinson said on May 13, 2013 at 8:58 am
Michael Franks, now there’s a name that takes me back 35+ years. Popsicle Toes and The Lady Wants to Know, oh my goodness, I’m back in college sitting on the floor of someone’s dorm room, thinking we are so cool for listening to alternative music. I didn’t know he was still around.
Glad to have you back, Nancy, and here’s hope for continued healing.
Joe K said on May 13, 2013 at 9:25 am
Good to have you back Nancy,
Try watching the rest of Goon some time. I thought it was really good, but you do need to get past the first 30 minutes. Killing time here in The Orlando airport for my flight back to Indy then the drive to Auburn, much rather fly out of Detroit but this was around $200 cheaper than dtw and $400 cheaper than fwa. I hate flying commercial.
alex said on May 13, 2013 at 9:55 am
Glad to know someone else shares my rarefied tastes, Julie.
Bob (not Greene) said on May 13, 2013 at 9:57 am
I am really looking forward to the Hawks-Wings series. Glad the red Wings beat the Ducks, because I didn’t want to see the Sharks — they’re a tougher match-up for the Hawks. I also love that the Blues and Canucks are out — the Hawks had problems against them too. Despite the fact the the Wings have been a little down this year, I’m sure this series will be a good one. Always love watching Hawks-Wings.
Dorothy said on May 13, 2013 at 10:12 am
Mike and I loved Michael Franks back in the day (late 70’s). And still do!!
Happy to have Nancy back in fighting form, so to speak! You can share as many details as you’d like. We’re a strong bunch, and for those too squeamish, they can move along and skip over that part of the paragraph.
Dorothy said on May 13, 2013 at 10:13 am
p. s. GO PENGUINS!!!
Prospero said on May 13, 2013 at 10:43 am
The Anaheim Ducks are named after a crappy Walt Disney hockey movie that was nothing but a knockoff of the far superior Bad News Bears, with Charlie Sheen’s brother instead of Walter Matthau. My first exposure to hockey came via radio, in the car with my dad when we first moved north to Detroit. Being football types, my brothers and I were astounded at the number of passes being intercepted in rapid succession.Those were the days of Gordy, but the true favorite of kids was Gary Unger, who looked like Greg Lake, skated like the wind, and once played a round of golf in a charity tourney in his bare feet. A real rock star.I tended toward Rangers fandom in those days because my dad was born in Brooklyn and I was a fan of the great goaltender Eddie Giacomin. Then the Rangers traded my two favorite players to Boston, Jean Ratelle and Brad Park. Pissed me off royally, and I quit the rangers and became a Bs fan, and have been ever since. One of my most painful sports memories is the Too Many Men on the Ice bullshit call in Montreal that gave the Canadiens a game 7 win in the ’79 semifinals, despite Gilles Gilbert making 57 saves. Playoff hockey is a different world than regular season. When the Bruins inevitably are eliminated because their Power Play sucks, I will transfer alliance to the Penguins, because Sid the Kid is just the best player in the world. It is always pleasant to see Crosby’s team beat the Caps and that revolting thug, Ovechkin, the Alex Rodriguez of the NHL.
brian stouder said on May 13, 2013 at 11:15 am
See – now you gotta admit – Prospero is a rare bird, and not a gadfly. A gadfly would go this way and that way, and express 5 opinions per paragraph, and would not be able to withstand much fact-checking. But Prose is the rare bird who holds a great many opinions with great passion, emotional precision, and heartfelt personal historical references.
This is why I read what he contributes (even if I skip many of the youtubes), and don’t begrudge him any excesses (even while scrolling past some of them).
Aside from that, didja see that Monsanto didn’t just WIN in the Supreme Court, but they won unanimously against the Indiana farmer who bought seed at an elevator, for which Monsanto got no money.
(fill in your own outlandish – yet all too plausible – theoretical gardening offense you could commit against Big Agro here)
adrianne said on May 13, 2013 at 11:45 am
Hey, there are people who still follow pro hockey? Who knew?
Glad to hear Nance is (mostly) back in the saddle, a belated Happy Mother’s Day to ya! Spent the day with my rapidly mending mother-in-law in Schenectady. Jean continues to astound me. Two months ago, she had a stroke and couldn’t get out of bed. Now she’s beetling around her home like nobody’s business. And her 81st birthday is Tuesday.
Prospero said on May 13, 2013 at 12:06 pm
Reader’s Digest ran a poll to see who Americans trust. The results are appalling and more than a little surreal.
Prospero said on May 13, 2013 at 1:01 pm
Actual truth of the Great IRS Scandal: none of those Teabanger groups are legitimately registered as 501(c)4 organizations, which are charities, not distinctly and unquestionably political entities as all of the Teabanger groups most certainly are. Legally, their registrations should be as 527s, which is a whole different animal for taxation purposes. What they really find attractive about the bogus registrations is that 527s must identify donors, while 501(c)4s are not required to do so. Thus Randolph and Mortimer Koch can drown free political speech in an ocean of their ill-gotten $bucks. Profits are being made, without doubt, and taxes should be paid on them. That is just an inescapable and inconvenient fact for the GOPers. Kommissar Karl Rove’s MO always includes setting up these straw gouts like Crossroads America and his first order of business is always to sell his mailing lists to his corporate Frankenstein monsters for a $few million. This is more sham outrage from GOPers caught gaming the tax code, and there is approximately as much substance to it as there is to the infinitesimal Benghazi Burger:
Being constantly reminded that something is “just your opinion” is an agro tautology. And that is “just your opinion”. That’s why it came out of my mouth, from my keyboard. This is a failure of logic closely connected to the horseshit claim that because somebody is a good guitar player, a talented actor, or a fine writer, she could not be capable of expressing useful political ideas. These are masterpieces of circular logic and as infuriating as solecisms get. Furthermore, opining without strength of conviction is pretty much useless. And if I say “Another Mother’s Day, another mass shooting”, obviously I intend it to be as inflammatory as the incident in reality is horrendous.
mark said on May 13, 2013 at 1:30 pm
It’s a shame the IRS didn’t consult with you before issuing an apology, prospero. You need to do a better job publicizing yourself as the source of “actual truth” in all things.
coozledad said on May 13, 2013 at 1:42 pm
The Republicans should have waited to demand heads roll in the IRS until they found out the IRS audits were initiated by a Bush appointee. But what the fuck. Show me a Republican who gives a fuck about reality anymore.
Right, Mr. Orbison?
coozledad said on May 13, 2013 at 1:43 pm
OOps. Here’s Roy now:
A candy colored chicken called Benghazi
Strolls into my bedroom every night
I fucked it but we still lost the election
But I’ll fuck it till Ron Fournier is right
I close my eyes
and cluck awhile
And bang that filthy bird
You think it’s obscene
You libtards do
But when I hatch out my chicken-man monkey
I’ll show you
In dreams…I walk with Issa
In dreams…we share a friendly scheisse
In dreams… he’s meant
to be president
In dreams…In dreams
But just before the dawn
I awake , my chicken’s gone
I can’t help it…I can’t help it
If I freak
When I remember
How it rimmed me with its beak
But we’ll be dustbathing in my dreams
Only in dreams
In chickenful dreams.
MarkH said on May 13, 2013 at 1:50 pm
Prospero, Ezra Klein is dead wrong on that definition. The “charities” application is specifically placed in the 501(c)3 category. The closest that 501(c)4 comes to a charity designation is that a group must meet an obligation to promote “social welfare”, whatever in the hell that means. And therein lies the problem. Here’s a rundown from wiki on the 501 structure:
Take a look at the 501(c)4 entry and you’ll see what a swiss cheese of loopholes it is:
“501(c)(4) organizations are generally civic leagues and other corporations operated exclusively for the promotion of social welfare, or local associations of employees with membership limited to a designated company or people in a particular municipality or neighborhood, and with net earnings devoted exclusively to charitable, educational, or recreational purposes. 501(c)(4) organizations may lobby for legislation, and unlike 501(c)(3) organizations they may also participate in political campaigns and elections, as long as its primary activity is the promotion of social welfare. The tax exemption for 501(c)(4) organizations applies to most of their operations, but contributions may be subject to gift tax, and income spent on political activities – generally the advocacy of a particular candidate in an election – is taxable.”
“Contributions to 501(c)(4) organizations are usually not deductible as charitable contributions for U.S. federal income tax, with a few exceptions. 501(c)(4) organizations are not required to disclose their donors publicly.”
“The lack of disclosure has led to extensive use of the 501(c)(4) provisions for organizations that are actively involved in lobbying, and has become controversial. Criticized as “dark money,” spending from these organizations on political TV ads has exceeded spending from Super PACs.”
Perfectly designed not just for “tea party” or “patriot”-oriented conservative groups, but for any group looking for a shelter for political agenda and dollars. The IRS’s problem is they made no bones about the fact they were targeting these right-leaning groups based on sought-after key words in their filings. If they come clean about other perhaps left-leaning organizations they went after, you may have a point. But until then, write your congressman about 501(c)4.
As president of my local service club, I know how seriously the IRS takes these things, 501(c)3 in particular, and what we went through to obtain that status for our foundation. Much legal consultation even though we are a slam-dunk charity.
Basset said on May 13, 2013 at 1:56 pm
The Readers’ Digest list opened on Rachael Ray and I just closed it right back up, no need to go any further.
brian stouder said on May 13, 2013 at 2:09 pm
Basset – I clicked toward the top of the list, and chuckled when I saw Alex Trebeck (hope I spelled that right) on the list. I suppose the problem with the premise “Most Trusted” is the incompleteness of it; “Most Trusted to do…” what?
I suppose trusting Rachel Ray to cook up something nice is sensible enough, and trusting Alex Trebeck (or Walter Cronkite, for that matter) to accurately read the information he has also makes sense. In the truest sense, I bet all of us – and most other people, too – “Mostly Trust” a person that almost no one else has heard of – our wives or husbands or moms or dads, or our very best friend, or whatever.
By the way – does anyone read Readers Digest anymore? Is it online? Does it end each article with a little joke or pun?
Dexter said on May 13, 2013 at 2:19 pm
Brian, when I was a kid , we normies delivered the Journal Gazette or the News-Sentinel, the girls delivered the thin Auburn Evening Star, and the weirdos delivered “Grit”. I had long forgotten “Grit” until it became a radio show topic last month.The host wondered if anyone still read “Grit”. My mom subscribed to it at different times.
RD? I haven’t picked one up in ages.
Here is a Saturday Evening Post article that rocked the world when it hit the newsstands:
“The Jack Alexander Article”, which propelled Alcoholics Anonymous into the public scrutiny…
Julie Robinson said on May 13, 2013 at 2:48 pm
More fuel for the Monsanto-haters fire. Funny, back when I was a kid growing up in corn country, the big ag companies were considered heroes for their development of hybrids that were drought resistant and gave bigger yields. (Not incidentally they also employed many teens as detasselers on their seed corn.) But they have taken too many wrong turns.
Adrianne, my mom will soon be 81 too and I am all too aware how lucky I am to still have her around, and doing pretty well. Even when she makes me nuts, which is just about every time we talk, like this Saturday Night Live fake commercial: http://youtu.be/DLZZv5nPv8I.
Prospero said on May 13, 2013 at 3:11 pm
Canadian astronaut does Bowie in space.
And as far as the IRS designation for the Teabanger groups. How much would GOPers howl if Move-on claimed a status that allowed them to keep donor names secret when it is clearly a 527 and kept the names secret. And anybody that would like to argue that Crossroads Americca actually takes ocial welfare into account in any of its political processes, have at it, but that will clearly be a tough sell. It’s quite clear that keeping this information private is the reason for having registered the way they did. And, once again as with Fast and Furious, drone strikes and now the IRS inquiries, these were all Shrubco initiatives. How does “net earnings devoted exclusively to charitable, educational, or recreational purpose” fit the Teabangers in any way?ESL?
I don’t trust Alex or his show, because the question the great alltime champ lost on was so simple to figure out without any prior knowledge, there had to have been subterfuge going on previously.
alex said on May 13, 2013 at 3:32 pm
I haven’t been paying much attention to the Gosnell case, but it looks like the doctor is going to be the sacraficial lamb of the pro-life movement. He was just declared guilty.
Hard to know whether he was truly negligent or malfeasant, given the highly charged subject matter, and if he was, of course he should be punished. But if he’s just a trial balloon, as it were, for the pro-life movement to have people arrested on trumped-up charges, then I’d say this is one sad day.
nancy said on May 13, 2013 at 3:41 pm
If you know anything about that case, it’s that the guy deserved this verdict. He was one sick, amoral man.
mark said on May 13, 2013 at 3:49 pm
From all reports, Gosnell was a despicable guy. To make him a part of the larger abortion issue is, I think, a mistake. (Some of) The pro-life side will try to do so, even though there is no indication that he is representative of anything. The pro-choice side would be ill-advised to rush to his defense.
“Gosnell also faces a third-degree murder charge in the death of a Virginia woman who died after allegedly receiving too much anesthesia under his care during a 2009 abortion. He could receive the death penalty if convicted.” http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2013-04-15/national/38558713_1_seven-infants-kermit-gosnell-abortion
LAMary said on May 13, 2013 at 3:53 pm
Alex, Gosnell was a monster. I’m sure the anti abortion folks will try to use his story for their own purposes, but what he did was not about the basic right to choose. It went way beyond that.
brian stouder said on May 13, 2013 at 4:27 pm
Mary – yeah, yeah, yeah – he was the ‘bad abortion doctor’ as opposed to all those great ones that are so abundant.
REAL doctors don’t do any harm, right?
Oh, sure – we have the occasional drug-adled addict-doctor (like the one who recently went to jail here in Fort Wayne), and the occasional quack; and then there are some child-porn trafficking doctors, and doctor-feel-good pushers, and every so often they (the GOOD anti-choice doctors) kill their spouses and/or families….
Wait – what was my point?
brian stouder said on May 13, 2013 at 4:32 pm
Say – I forgot to ask a question. Here’s an excerpt from that UK article:
A Mirror investigation discovered 25 have convictions for actual bodily harm and three for grievous bodily harm.
Three sick male medics were caught in possession of indecent images of children, two found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving and two of trafficking drugs.
Two have convictions for cruelty to children, nine for attacking their partners, five for harassment and two for possessing offensive weapons.
One made threats to kill, another has a conviction for perverting justice, one for perjury and five were guilty of fraud.
Eight male doctors have records for kerb crawling, 24 for forgery and 11 for theft offences.
So the question is – what is “Kerb crawling”?
mark said on May 13, 2013 at 4:41 pm
Somebody’s blood sugar may be a little elevated….
brian stouder said on May 13, 2013 at 4:43 pm
Sugar? Naaaahhhh –
I’m LOADED UP with aspartame, baby!
(gotta love Diet Pepsi on ice)
garmoore2 said on May 13, 2013 at 8:56 pm
“Kerb crawling” is Britspeak for soliciting prostitution.
Judybusy said on May 13, 2013 at 9:18 pm
Well, to totally derail this convo, today is a great day in our house: our state Senate passed marriage equality, and the Guv is set to sign at 5 tomorrow. I can’t go to the signing because my FIANCEE has her pinning ceremony for finishing nursing school!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The latter has been a bitch of a trail–those with really good memories may recall some details–so we are just swooning for so many reasons tonight. And we had chicken flautas with Summit Saga beer. Well, I did. My FIANCEE went out after the final exam and bar-hopped all day!
alex said on May 13, 2013 at 10:13 pm
Yay! Congrats Judybusy! Maybe we’ll go up there to get our marriage license. Iowa’s a little closer, but Minnesota sounds like a better place to have a honeymoon.
Well, now I’ve finally been reading about Gosnell and from the descriptions of things, the evidence was pretty damning. I’d only paid the media circus half a mind, noting that the right-wingers were foaming at the mouth that the liberal media were ignoring a national story, a story about a man taking scissors to live babies, which sounded just like the kind of overheated hyperbole I’ve come to expect from pro-lifers. That’s why I snoozed through this one.
Prospero said on May 13, 2013 at 10:40 pm
Wuld y’all just admit once and for all what is immutable fact. If GOPer witchhunters want to gfind a scandal. They are going to have to follow the cash, like Kerry did. Kerry was the quintessential prosecutor and he caught Ollie and fawn annd all the Raygunistas fucking over the Constitution and stealing the 2000 election. If the crooks want to figure out some sort of scandal, they should look at the absolute Constitution fuck GOPers pulled in those days of Iran-Contr. That was clear illegal behavior. The President was a loony tune. What wasthee problem with nutcases ? That is the way we judge things. Here is the deal. People are such dumbasses they voted for Shrubco. Are we kidding? You voted for W?
Prospero said on May 13, 2013 at 10:51 pm
I find it perfect Garry in his bare feet. Coolest hockey player ever lived. Purely awesome. Bare feet. And he looked like Greg Lake; Handsome bastqrrd.
Brandon said on May 14, 2013 at 1:43 am
@prospero: Any thoughts on Slap Shot?
@coozledad: Your Orbison parody rivals the 2 Live Crew’s one of “Pretty Woman.”
@nancy: I’m glad you’re getting back into the swing of things. Continue to live out loud tomorrow night by watching part two of the three-part Bad Girls: Atlanta reunion special on Oxygen.
LAMary said on May 14, 2013 at 11:40 am
Just to add to the awfulness of Gosnell, wasn’t there an issue with disposal of fetuses as well? He’s beyond back alley abortionist bad guy.
beb said on May 14, 2013 at 4:40 pm
Boingboing linked to this. Kinda interesting. Who is the highest paid state employee in any state? Governor is one of them.