Twice in one year.

So I was sitting in my pre-op curtained cubicle, having already been gowned, IV’d and dilated. My time in the OR was still an hour away, and I asked for a magazine. The nurse returned with four, and I was working my way through Oprah, HGTV, Family Circle and one I can’t recall, but it wasn’t drowning out the chatter on either side.

To my right, a lawyer sat with his wife, who was having some sort of orthopedic procedure. He was bitching about an upcoming case, and the flaunting of the rules on discovery. Then he took a break, and resumed bitching, this time about the fact everything was running behind. “I make it a point not to keep people waiting at my office,” he said.

On the other side, a woman with an old-lady voice and an old-lady medical history — hysterectomy, joint replacement, heart valves, the whole nine. She was chirpy and sweet, and her husband joined her, too, and they discussed the stock market. It was down, she said. That’s to be expected this time of year, he replied. They both quoted some authority named Rush, which chilled my blood. Is Rush Limbaugh offering investment advice? Then something chilled it even more: It’s possible their investment counselor is named Rush, and was so christened due to his parents’ devotion to the famous one — he’s been on the air that long. What a depressing idea. What a depressing place to work every day, I thought, so when my own doctor appeared to make a mark on my forehead to indicate which eye he was planning to work on, I said, “What do you mean, eye? I’m here for vaginal rejuvenation surgery.” I was hoping to bring a smile to his face amid all this talk of deep-vein thrombosis and evidentiary rules, and he did smile, but then the people on both sides got very quiet, so hey — win-win!

They have ads for vaginal rejuvenation surgery in a magazine I used to freelance for. The art for the ad was a cameo-type photo of an apparently nude, very lithe gymnast doing a difficult back bend. I guess this is supposed to suggest the new suppleness that will infuse your previously tired old hoo-hah. Vaginal surgery, I’m told, is most popular among certain ethnic groups where virginity is a condition of betrothal, and proof is expected in the form of wedding-bed bloodstains. Hence, the revirginization procedure. I read a story about this in a newspaper a few years ago. A woman gave it to her husband for their 10th anniversary; it cost $6,000. A reader left this comment: She should have spent that money on a really great big-screen TV, so he could enjoy it more than once.

If this sounds like the mental ramblings of a woman enjoying the twilight-sleep form of anesthesia, it should. Man, that stuff is some kind of nod. You lie there thinking someone is poking something into my eye, and I don’t even care! Keep that sweet drip coming. I was released as soon as I was safely ambulatory and coherent, and Alan took me out for pancakes, begging me to let him snip the FALL RISK bracelet off my wrist, but I refused. Then we went home, and I took a one-hour nap. It was wonderful. I never sleep like that during the day anymore.

And now, if you missed it yesterday, I have the eyesight of a Terminator. It’s quite something.

So we come to the end of the week, and slide into the holidays. I don’t know how much posting will be happening through New Year’s; I’m thinking maybe pictures, links, not much else unless the spirit moves me. I hope I’m moved, but I may not be. But there will be fresh threads here from time to time for y’all to discuss things, and who knows? Perhaps there will be big news.

Which brings us to the bloggage, which starts with Dan Savage’s takedown of Sarah Palin’s stupid new book. Taking her down, I suppose, is sort of like shooting a big dumb fish in a very small barrel, but it’s still fun to read:

Page 5: Here I learn something I didn’t know and, if I were Sarah Palin, something I wouldn’t want anyone to know. But Sarah hustles this fact to the front of the book because she sure as hell wants us to know it: Sarah surprised Todd with a “nice, needed, powerful gun” for Christmas in 2012. It was a “small act of civil disobedience,” Palin writes, prompted by “the anti-gun chatter coming from Washington.”

What was inspiring that anti-gun chatter in Washington in December of 2012? Oh, right: Twenty children and six teachers were shot dead in their classrooms by a deranged asshole with a “powerful gun.” And before the grieving mothers and fathers of Newtown, Connecticut, could put their dead children in the ground, Sarah Palin ran out gun shopping. Buying Todd a gun in the wake of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary was “fun,” Palin writes—and, again, an act of “civil disobedience.” Because gun nuts are a persecuted minority.

This paragraph about gun shopping in December of 2012—one first grader at Sandy Hook was shot 11 times—ends with Palin bragging about her tits. I’m not kidding.

Best long read I haven’t finished yet, but will eventually: The incredible true story of Linda Taylor, welfare queen.

Alex Pareene’s 2013 Hack List in Salon is a thing of beauty, each piece written in the style of the hack him/herself.

Noted yesterday in comments, but noted again here: Al Goldstein is dead. He was a filthy man in a filthy business, and twits like Rod Dreher feel very smug calling his life “wasted,” and let them if they must. I will recall an observation made by filmmaker Milos Forman, at the time he made “The People vs. Larry Flynt.” I can’t look it up now, but he said something to the effect that it’s easy to go after pornographers. No one likes them, their work is repellant, and who really cares if they’re driven into illegality? Well, I care. I think the Supreme Court argument scene in that film is one of the very best presented, and do keep in mind this was a case that Flynt won unanimously. Flynt was fighting for the right to run a repulsive parody about Jerry Falwell; Goldstein fought to make his mail-order magazine legal to buy anywhere in the country. Flynt had the better case, and both are (were) nasty men, but that’s who makes the big laws at that level:

Happy holidays to all, even you, Sarah Palin. I’ll be around, and I hope all of you will be, too.

Posted at 12:30 am in Same ol' same ol' |

79 responses to “Twice in one year.”

  1. Dexter said on December 20, 2013 at 3:08 am

    When the techs gave me my dose of verset just before my colonoscopy began, the sedation was remarkable. It seemed I was only with the doctor a few seconds. I remember being wheeled to the little recovery room, and I remember telling my wife to make sure we stop at the appointment desk as we exited the building to make a Friday appointment which the doctor told me I had to make for a follow-up. My wife and the doc had a good laugh at that one, because I had dreamed it up during the time I was dosed. I felt like I wanted to drive home…that would have been a bad idea. When we got home, I sat down at my computer and passed out in my chair for two and a half hours. I woke up with my hand on my mouse;I had not moved an inch…frozen in time for 150 minutes.

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  2. Jolene said on December 20, 2013 at 4:02 am

    Anesthesia is truly amazing. I keep meaning to read about how it works, but haven’t done it yet.

    My most incredible experience with it was when I had epiglotitus. I was anesthetized in the wee hours of a Tuesday and didn’t wake up until Thursday AM–with noknowledge, of course, that two days had passed.

    Also amusing: I had ambulatory surgery to remove a spot of melanoma. Was sooooooop tired when I got home. Kept struggling to wake up, but couldn’t do it. Slept off and on .through the next day. Then, at the end of the day, I read the printed instructions they’d given me to take home. First paragraph said: You will be very tired. Shucks, I shouldn’t have bothered to struggle. Lesson learned. Always read the instructions first.

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  3. David C. said on December 20, 2013 at 7:00 am

    I had a similar experience to Dexter’s. I had a colonoscopy and woke up feeling that no time had passed. I felt like I had slept for a full 8 hours. I read some internet wag say $P’s book is actually a perfect Festivus book – an airing of grievances.

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  4. Mindy said on December 20, 2013 at 7:55 am

    My dad had surgery on his neck a few years ago. The anesthesiologist arrived and began his routine questioning – did he ever have surgery before and were there any ill effects from the anesthesia? My dad told him yes, and the doctor froze in horror waiting to hear what he would have to deal with. “That stuff knocks me out something awful!” sez dad. The doctor laughed out loud and said the cocktail waitress would be in momentarily.

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  5. Danny said on December 20, 2013 at 8:06 am

    Dexter, my buddy got out of his first colonoscopy a few years ago and looking at the equipment, asked the doctor if he had to use the entire length. The Doc replied, “Well no, we didn’t have to, but we did it anyway just to see if we could.” Now that Doc would have appreciated Nancy’s humor too.

    Also Dexter, I had to do a double take yesterday. Sorry to hear about you sister-in-law, but at first read, I thought “Uncle Lars” was your 88-year-old uncle you were talking about the day before… which BTW was a great story…thanks for sharing.

    And while I am at the interpersonal level, Nancy, I of course am very happy everything turned out good for the eyes and hope your knees are healthy enough for continued ambulations and bike riding in the coming years. I don’t usually comment on health and well-being in this forum because the thoughts are usually covered by others and are a given, I assume.

    Back to the elderly care thread from the other day: Della, I really liked the way you laid that all out, the situation with your much-loved mother. I think about the topic off and on and over Thanksgiving I spent quite a bit of time with my 96-tear-old grandfather who, as of a few months ago, is in a memory-care facility. Unfortunately he has to have meds because of severe arthritis pain and gets a fentanyl patch every three days, which means he has good days and bad. It’s a nice facility for about $5k/month, but the food is horrid, which is unfortunate (and unnecessary since it is so easy to make decent tasting food).

    I sat with a few of his friends/fellow-sojourners too and that was a bit depressing. One who used to own and run his own flight school, is now quite aphasic. He always seemed at the edge of comprehension and even lifted his fingers a few times as if ready to make a point, but then sadness would chase confusion across his face and just like that, he forgot there was anything to be sad about.

    My 96-year-old grandmother shows no signs of giving up the ghost anytime soon. She went to several low-impact walking classes with my wife and mother where they did the equivalent of 4 and 5 mile walks (and yes I am blessed to still have two grandparents living since I will be 50 next year).

    Well, this was all on my mind this morning because I am filling out Christmas cards that will probably be late arriving. It has been a hellishly busy year for me and I will be glad to see the end of 2013. My “big” holiday plans involve a lot of sleep and not much else besides maybe tracking down the 1937 version of “A Christmas Carol” that Jeff mentioned a few days back. Someday I must remember to ask Jeff what Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton were like in person.

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  6. alex said on December 20, 2013 at 8:36 am

    I was awake throughout the placement of my heart stents but don’t remember much beyond them pantsing me and shaving my pubes off and I was totally oblivious to the fact that they’d punched a hole next to my balls and shoved a robotic arm up my femoral artery all the way to my chest. Afterward a nurse pulled a big fat tube out of the opening to the femoral artery and pressed herself atop my junk for 45 minutes until the hole coagulated. On the way there, the paramedic in the ambulance told me it was going to be a breeze, that if this were happening 25 years ago they’d be cutting open my rib cage with a buzz saw and my chances for survival would be only iffy.
    Not to give away too much on the welfare queen story, but one of the most remarkable upshots of the whole affair was the large governmental bureaucracy suddenly put into place to combat and prosecute a problem that was mostly nonexistent. Talk about defrauding the taxpayer. That Ronald Reagan was a sly one—he managed to whip up a new strain of white racist hysteria that remains potent to this day.

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  7. nancy said on December 20, 2013 at 8:44 am

    Laura Lippman made the same comment re that story yesterday, Alex — that if Linda Taylor was typical of welfare recipients, then Adam Lanza is typical of gun owners.

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  8. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 20, 2013 at 8:46 am

    Danny, 1938, MGM, Hollywood’s first crack at the “Carol.” Reginald Owen starred, and the Cratchit family has extra charm because they’re mostly the Lockhart family in life; June, a young girl then, became Lassie’s mother (wait, I mean . . .), and her father Gene is one of those “yeah, he was in . . . .” actors, such as the judge in “Miracle on 34th Street.”

    Spent most of yesterday sitting with a family going in and out of a specially arranged room of the dining room where the matriarch is passing. She’s beyond speech, but we presume not beyond hearing and some touch, and it is a tragic thing of beauty. She decided last week that she just couldn’t do dialysis any more just to notch one more Christmas, and her husband and kids gave her the gift of giving her their heartfelt if sorrowful permission. We go back and forth between saying the Lord’s Prayer and the 23rd Psalm together, and reciting passages from . . . the Godfather movies, which she loves. Lots of Christmas scenes in them, actually. And yes, we have a bowl of oranges on the table just outside the bedroom door. The hospice nurse got it at once, putting her inside the charmed circle.

    In between trips there, I delivered some magic food cards to some unexpecting but needful families (Kroger is ticking me off these days, but that’s another story), and bottles of hard liquor or vases of flowers to some of my favorite non-profit agency directors, depending on their tastes. One says she’d have stopped working with the homeless years ago except she suspects I wouldn’t bring her the extra large bottle of Bombay Sapphire every December anymore; I assured her I’d continue at this point even if she takes a long-deserved retirement, which I’m thankful she won’t for at least four more years.

    Our wait list for transitional housing is at 35; if you have a prayer to spare, we’ve got Dottie (Don Dottie) covered — lift up those 35 families as we head into January. Blessings to all, I’m not likely to pop up here much if at all until 2014! Very happy about Nancy’s ability to soar down and pounce on meadow voles from 100 feet up — use your new powers for good.

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  9. nancy said on December 20, 2013 at 8:52 am

    The Godfather movies? I’m going to need a little more detail. Although I guess “leave the gun, take the cannoli” works for just about any situation.

    Today, I’m shopping for a family of six — five kids, one mom — who are clients of a friend of mine. They’re in a shelter now, but soon will go to subsidized housing, in part because mom is desperate to work and has accepted a job as a hotel maid. My friend requests small, symbolic gifts for the children, Dollar Tree gift cards and nothing too fancy. The kids range in age from 2 to 15, and I’m amazed at how much thought has to go into this sort of thing. No batteries, no small parts that can get lost, nothing anyone would be tempted to sell, etc. But I’m going to make it happen, because my Christmas bonus arrived today and I feel the need to pay it forward.

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  10. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 20, 2013 at 8:58 am


    I should add this little tale from our local paper today, with a guy many of us in the county know; he’s a story amenable to the “welfare queen” distortion, but his situation is much more complex (IMHO) than that. Well, he has a plan anyhow. What WOULD it take to help him envision a new plan? This question interests me, in large part because we have plenty of folks who are doing versions of what this guy is doing, just in “slow-motion” as it were.

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  11. Danny said on December 20, 2013 at 9:01 am

    Some years we adopt families, but every years for years now I have gotten gift cards for the whole aquatics staff and student lifeguards over at the local pool where I swim. The gifts cards are usually for this local burger joint called Islands. Can’t tell you how happy I am this morning to be taking these over to the pool. Such joy it is to give to them. I love those people!

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  12. Danny said on December 20, 2013 at 9:05 am

    .. “every year for years now.” doh

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  13. coozledad said on December 20, 2013 at 9:14 am

    Six thousand is too much for a hymen. Here’s one that works like cum-gum but it spurts fake blood instead of minty gel when it’s squooshed. And it looks like they’re sold in twelve packs, so you can fool the whole varsity squad.

    I’ve never seen a hymen, so these would probably convince me. Can you shoot them like a rubber band when they’re loose?

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  14. LAMary said on December 20, 2013 at 9:41 am

    I don’t handle Demerol well, and that’s what I was given the last two times I had colonoscopies. First time it was nightmares then vomiting when I woke up. Second time I tried to slug the doctor when he was inserting the hose/camera thing. I was having a flashback to creepy subway frotteurs I had encountered back in my NYC days. This was followed by waking up and vomiting. Now I make a point of telling docs not to give me Demerol.

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  15. Snarkworth said on December 20, 2013 at 9:45 am

    Was the lawyer bemoaning flaunting, or perhaps flouting?

    (apologies for pedantry)

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  16. Prospero said on December 20, 2013 at 9:52 am

    A repulsive parody, of a repulsive excuse for a human being. Tres post-modern, eh?

    For movie variations on Charles Dickens re: Christmas, I like the Albert Finney musical version from 1970. London joining together to sing “Thank you very much, that’s the nicest thing that anyone’s ever done for me” with gusto and great joy, and Scrooge coming to realize they are thanking him for dying, is amazing. I also love the Ringle, ringle song in the Mr. Magoo’s Christmas.

    Demerol causes instant projectile nausea for me. I have tried to warn people in ERs about this unfortunate reaction, but they never listen. Funny, neither morphine nor heroin ever had the same effect.

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  17. Judybusy said on December 20, 2013 at 10:08 am

    Related to the topic of diminishing capacities: I recently began a book by Diane Ackerman, 100 Words for Love which talks about how her husband, Paul West, recovered from a stroke. I love her writing, but was listening to it on CD ad the narrator didn’t work for me. So, I will get back to it in print. I so enjoyed the way she described their relationsip to each other, their art, and words.

    We give generously throughout the year to an agency that provides services to people living with HIV/AIDS, which I’ve written about before. There are about 250 on our waiting list, but we are on board to build 2 new apartment buildings, and our goal is to provide the opportunity for housing to all Minnesotans living with HIV/AIDS within 8 years. It’s so damn slow, this development process. On any given night, there are 300 HIV+ people who are homeless in our state. I am back on the board as of January 1. I also continue to cook for one of the care homes–4 adults getting 24-hour care. Last year, one of the residents died in early December. I so loved him, and his gentle spirit. I got to visit him while he was in hospice at the house. This Saturday, there is a memorial, but I can’t go. Dear friends are coming into town and that is the only night we could get together. I am so sad to miss the gathering for this man.

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  18. Bitter Scribe said on December 20, 2013 at 10:44 am

    A passage from a long-forgotten short story set in a home for unwed mothers, which I have to reconstruct from memory because it’s long forgotten. Two women who work there are discussing one of the “girls,” who, after giving birth, is about to marry (not her baby daddy):

    “Did she tell him?”

    “About what?”

    “About what? About the baby. The poor little illegitimate baby. ‘It was only a little baby, Your Honor.'”

    “Oh, dear God, Mary, it’s not so funny. No. She hasn’t told him.”

    “Well, she’ll have to tell him eventually, won’t she? I mean, he’ll find out. You know, on their wedding night.”

    “No, she’s found a doctor who can do something to her…down there. To make her, you know, like a virgin.”

    What? You get the name of that doctor. I’ll have one of those.”

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  19. Bitter Scribe said on December 20, 2013 at 11:54 am

    If you’re really cheesed off about Palin’s book, hop over to and read some of the reviews. I guarantee you’ll feel better:

    Christmas isn’t about sharing the holiday quietly with your family. It’s about shoving it down the throats of people who don’t believe (or don’t believe hard enough), and creating animosity and fear so we get rid of those people stopping us from spreading a holiday about peace and good will to all men.

    Interesting fact: The above review, and many others, gave the book five extremely sarcastic stars, which has the effect of inflating its overall star rating.

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  20. MarkH said on December 20, 2013 at 11:56 am

    I find something to like in most any version of A Christmas Carol, but prefer the oder film versions with Owen and Alistair Sim. The George C. Scott version was enjoyable because, well, George C. Scott.

    Speaking of A Christmas Carol, late last night on Turner Classic Movies, there was a most ineresting take on the Dickens story called ‘A Carol for Another Christmas’. Did anyone here see it? It was a TV movie production from 1964 sponsored by Xerox originally broadcast without commercial interruption. Filmed in black and white, script by Rod Serling, directed by Joseph L. Mankewicz. An interesting powerhouse cast of Sterling Hayden in the Scrooge role (named Grudge here), Eva Marie Saint, Ben Gazzara, Pat Hingle, Robert Shaw, and – get this – Peter Sellers as an oddball character called the Imperial Me. As you might expect with Serling involved the production had a very Twilight Zonish feel to it right down to the sets. The twist was that it was related to support for the United Nations and the Christmas ghosts showed the Grudge character (a businessman who can’t get over the bitterness of losing his son in WW II) what the world would be like if sour people like him ruled and there was no UN. Sort of Wonderful Lifish there as well. Worth watching if you can find it.

    The wife and I had our second colonoscopies last month, same as some of you here, I woke up and it was like I was out only a moment. Clean bill of health for both, too.

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  21. MarkH said on December 20, 2013 at 11:59 am

    “…OLDER…” Christmas gift request to Santa JC: return of the edit button!

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  22. Deborah said on December 20, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    Every time I’ve ever had anesthesia I’ve been sick to my stomach afterward, even though I always tell the Dr before hand. The last time I was given anti-nausea pills for after, but they didn’t work.

    Prospero, please tell me when it is appropriate to say “nauseated” as opposed to “nauseous”. I don’t get the difference.

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  23. LAMary said on December 20, 2013 at 12:09 pm

    Something that makes you want to puke is nauseous. When you are puking you’re nauseated.

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  24. Prospero said on December 20, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    Scribe@19 I just received an email from my grad school, Suffolk University with a gorgeous photo of the frog pond in the Common in Boston. The message said Season’s Greetings. Am I supposed to think this is the War on Christmas, or simple common decency and respect for my Jewish and Muslim classmates. STFU about this idiotic nonsense please. In the spirit of Christmas.

    Nauseous applies to something that induces nausea in a beholder, who is the one actually nauseated. $Palin and her bromides are nauseous. The relationships of the words are similar to awesome and awed.

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  25. Charlotte said on December 20, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    Our story of inevitable decline is canine here — my late brother’s 13 year old spaniel has an increasingly paralyzed larynx, which leads to long bouts of gasping for air and looking at me with panic in his eyes. So, I thought yesterday was The Day, and my nice vet was going to come by on his way home after work. When lo, what should appear? but a rejuvenated dog in my living room, all bright eyed and tail wagging and wanting his dinner. “I’m on call all weekend,” my nice vet said, looking relieved. “Maybe he’ll get another couple of good days.” We tweaked his meds again, and today is, indeed, better than yesterday. All we can ask for at this point.

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  26. Dexter said on December 20, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    You have never been anesthetized until you have been knocked the fuck out by ether. I am old enough to have had surgery as that nasty stuff was used. You know how it works, right? Ever watch “Cider House Rules”, the movie made from the John Irving book? It’s like getting really drunk really fast. I was told to count backwards from 100 and I remember getting to 92. I was 9 years old, at the old Garrett, Indiana , Sacred Heart Hospital.
    In the movie, the doctor (Michael Caine) was addicted to ether. He’d take his kerchief and soak it in ether and go off to never-never land. That technique was also a familiar theme in a lot of Hunter S, Thompson’s writings.
    After abdominal surgery, I woke up sick as I ever have been in my life. Constant heaving , for hours as I recall. This was in 1959, and in subsequent years I have learned there were much better ways of sedation available by then. Motherfuckers anyway. A simple, no-complications appendectomy? Nine days in the hospital. I think the entire bill was like $65…total!

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  27. Bob (not Greene) said on December 20, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    MarkH @ 20 — speaking of characters called Grudge, it reminded me of Stan Freberg’s radio spoof of “Dragnet”

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  28. MarkH said on December 20, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Bob(NG), Freberg will always be a treasured favorite. I had not seen that one before, though. Lots of Freberg’s commercials are on youtube.

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  29. Kirk said on December 20, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    Snarkworth @ 15: You beat me to it.

    MarkH @ 20: I watched the end of Scrooge, all of the 1938 A Christmas Carol and all of Carol for Another Christmas on TCM last night. I pretty much like all versions, too.

    The Rod Serling one was dug up last year by TCM and shown for the first time since the one and only showing in 1964. Kind of heavy-handed politically, but a good message and an all-star cast. Peter Sellers is great, as usual.

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  30. Kirk said on December 20, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    Which kid does June Lockhart play in the ’38 Carol?

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  31. Sherri said on December 20, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    Dex, I had ether when I had a tonsillectomy in 1968. I don’t know why they chose ether, but it was indeed nasty stuff. I was only six, but they had to hold me down because I fought it like crazy going out and I fought it coming it back.

    As to how anesthetics work, that’s still under study:

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  32. Joe K said on December 20, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    I was born in that hospital in Garrett,
    It’s still there, it’s now apartments.
    Pilot Joe

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  33. Bob (not Greene) said on December 20, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    KIrk @ 30, she’s about 11 or 12 years old and she looks exactly the way you’d expect June Lockhart to look at that age. I think she’s the kid who yells, “Veal!” when Bob Cratchit asks his kids to guess what he’s brought home.

    Little known fact: Gene Lockhart was co-author of the song “The World is Waiting for a Sunrise.” The Benny Goodman Quartet gives it a workout here:

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  34. Bob (not Greene) said on December 20, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    *”the Sunrise”

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  35. Connie said on December 20, 2013 at 1:44 pm

    I had ether at 17 and remember it well. When I was going under the docs were talking about my dad, their dentist, and how much trouble they would get in if they screwed this up, all in kind of an up/down quiet/loud style that reminded me of European police sirens. I woke up and thought my mother was sitting there watching me die. It actually was some time before I actually opened my eyes.

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  36. LAMary said on December 20, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    I had ether for an appendectomy and to have some molars extracted. Both times I had bad dreams and woke up crying. I’m just not an anethesia type of person.

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  37. Jolene said on December 20, 2013 at 1:57 pm

    I had ether for a tonsillectomy too. Was about nine, I think. Was sick as the rest of you have described and then, of course, was sent home pretty much as soon as I stopped being sick. This was a huge disappointment to me.

    i had a younger sister who’d been hospitalized a couple of times to remediate effects of her polio, and she’d been showered with gifts and treats from pretty much everybody in our small town. I was hoping for some of the same, but my hospitalization was too brief and I was too sick to take advantage of what there was of it.

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  38. Bob (not Greene) said on December 20, 2013 at 2:11 pm

    Kirk, you can see young June Lockhart here at about the 17:05 mark. She doesn’t say “Veal” she says “I know, I know .. sausages!”

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  39. Jolene said on December 20, 2013 at 2:14 pm

    The president’s end-of-the-year press conference is about to begin. Just in case you’re at home and like that sort of thing.

    Poor guy. What a year he’s had. Is on his way to Hawaii for two weeks today, though. Hard to think of a person who deserves a vacation more.

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  40. DellaDash said on December 20, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    My condolences to you and your wife, Dexter.

    Thoroughly Savage’d Palin…what a bonbon!

    Just finished watching the series finale of ‘Breaking Bad’ on Netflix DVD. Tight! Brilliant! Almost up there with ‘The Wire’. My only quibble is in trying to accept that master-manipulator Walt was able to push the hidden button in no-nonsense-Nazi Jack that would deflect just one more necessary takedown, and propel him into a hissy fit that brought Jesse into the fray, in order to prove something. Minor nitpick.

    As for ‘Homeland’, the energy required to suspend belief would have become exhausting long ago if not for the delicious gravitas of our very own Inigo Montoya from ‘The Princess Bride’ pretending to be Saul in the guise of Mandy Patinkin. And really…Carrie scrabbling at the chain link fence, tragically shrieking for her dangling Brody, who was managing to hang on, so to speak, long enough to be aware that she had defied his wishes and was witnessing his sordid end? Really? Really?

    Big up to Jeff(tmmo)’s caretakers. I’m in awe of them. And I want to clarify something here…I’m the fool rushing in where angels (Sherri) fear to tread. The countless times I’ve snapped, lost my temper, slammed cupboard doors, stomped and kicked at hard objects with my bare feet…barely restraining the kind of screams that would shred my vocal cords into a pulp as raw as my nerves…are a testament to the kind of privileged childhood that allowed me to arrive at my 60’s immature, self-absorbed and having lived a full life doing exactly what I’ve wanted to do when I wanted to do it, with my sense of entitlement and self-worth intact. Besides granting me and my siblings that childhood, all my mother has wanted to do throughout our adult life was be helpful. It would never occur to her to ask for help…she has a hard time receiving it.

    Anyway, My baby brother from San Francisco talked a lot about life expectancy extending to 150 years for the current generation, when he helped me drive my limping ’95 Dodge Ram up to Iowa from Nashville last spring. Heaven help us (though I don’t believe in heaven)! Our bodies and brains just weren’t designed to last this long…and clever mankind still has a long way to go in figuring out how to deal with it while we boomers are up against the odds across the board. My choice isn’t necessarily the best choice in general, and certainly not an appropriate one for any of my brothers and sisters; who are more career-oriented than I, have children they’ve raised, own homes that our mother would be miserable moving to, and so on. One sister tweaked me on how keeping Mom in such good physical shape is prolonging my agony (or ‘living hell’ as I’ve described it). I confess, the prospect of several more years of this is more than daunting. It’s kind of dreadful. So I just try not to think too much about mercy killing, and continue to give it my best shot, such as it is.

    There are cameras all over the place, up here, and I’ve received 2 traffic tickets in the mail for running red lights (that I didn’t see)…for which Mom paid ($65 a pop) with much grouching. (Although she got several tickets for speeding to church at 35 mph, no less, when she was still driving.) On Thanksgiving day (shout out to Danny), as we were en route to a cousin’s house (where Mom introduced me as her sister-in-law, not for the first time), we came to a red light at an intersection where there was no sign of traffic.

    “Should I run this red light, Mom?” I teased.

    “If you do, you’ll pay for it.”

    “Not if you tell me to.”

    “Then you’ll really have to pay for doing what a crazy woman says,” she cracked.

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  41. coozledad said on December 20, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    And here’s a guy who has long deserved a thorough public humiliation. Someone once asked me why I refused to read a book by Jonah Goldberg. It was primarily because his writing is shit, his thinking is shit, and he’s only in print because his mama sucked the right dick.

    But this particular bucket of Goldbergian vomit is like Piggy from Lord of the Flies siding with Jack to try and appear masculine. Goldberg has a creepy affinity for folks who would be his natural persecutors. Mama must have been a case and a half. He’s suicidal.

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  42. MichaelG said on December 20, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    My condolences, Dexter. Also, best wishes to all who have ailing relatives.

    Interesting anesthetic stories. I had my cataract surgeries done in an eye surgery center that Kaiser operates here in Rancho Cordova. It’s a beautiful, state of the art facility, bright and clean and cheerful. All the staff are upbeat, friendly and professional. One feels upbeat and optimistic there. I was semi-conscious through both surgeries, felt no pain and fully recovered from the anesthetic in about an hour. I wore an eye patch until the next day when the Dr. took it off at her office. I couldn’t have asked for better treatment or a better place. The outcome was far beyond expectations. Oh, and that’s the only time I’ve ever been knocked out.

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  43. Basset said on December 20, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    Just tried to post a link to the Les Paul & Mary Ford version of “Sunrise” but can’t seem to do it on my phone, easy enough to find on YouTube though.

    Ether… for a tonsillectomy about 1960 at the only hospital in Linton, Indiana, I remember fighting it (I was five) and the world going to TV static.

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  44. Kirk said on December 20, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    Bob(nG)@38: Thank you, sir

    I had ether for a tonsillectomy when I was 5. I did not like the idea of being forced to breathe something other than air and held my breath for as long as I could, but I didn’t thrash around or anything. Don’t believe it made me sick.

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  45. Deborah said on December 20, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    Wasn’t it ether that the character played by Dennis Hopper in Blue Velvet was sucking? That was one of the creepiest movie scenes for me.

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  46. Dexter said on December 20, 2013 at 6:03 pm

    Deborah, that was mystery gas…Lynch never explained what it was as far as I know. “MOMMY, MOMMY!”.
    NSFW Don’t even watch this if you don’t dig David Lynch and his moviemaking style.

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  47. Kirk said on December 20, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    “Blue Velvet” includes one of my favorite movie lines: “Heineken? Fuck that shit! Pabst Blue Ribbon!”

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  48. Deborah said on December 20, 2013 at 10:57 pm

    We saw the movie “Nebraska” this evening, I highly recommend it. Those people could be my relatives and I went to school in Nebraska so I could totally relate. It’s pretty bleak, shot in black and white but seemed appropriate for the subject matter. Bruce Dern is fantastic, I’ll be rooting for him for the Oscar for best actor.

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  49. Colleen said on December 20, 2013 at 10:58 pm

    I love anesthesia. I am textbook…..I go to sleep, I wake up. No thrashing, no struggling, no moaning and groaning. It’s as if time is a ribbon, and they cut out the surgery part and sew the go to sleep and wake up ends together.

    Tough week here…Father in law died on Wednesday, after battling Alzheimer’s. That’s a cruel and evil disease. Too many people having losses and sickness to deal with…..

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  50. Brandon said on December 20, 2013 at 11:36 pm

    Happy holidays to all….

    Mele Kalikimaka a me ka Hau`oli Makahiki Hou!

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  51. Dexter said on December 20, 2013 at 11:46 pm

    Just for you, Kirk:

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  52. Dexter said on December 20, 2013 at 11:52 pm

    Headline: “San Francisco Wedding pulled off Without a Stitch”
    Not a typo. No, ma’am.

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  53. Kirk said on December 21, 2013 at 12:01 am

    Thanks, Dexter.

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  54. Dexter said on December 21, 2013 at 3:53 am

    Millionaire Miley is so into herself…she posted a selfie of herself just after having a shower. She is skinny like 60s fashion supermodel Twiggy was skinny…meaning sickly-skinny. Her voice is irritating, I have seen her tongue in photos daily for years, but she has something kids like. Alright, she looks like a kid in a 1940 German concentration camp. Shit.

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  55. Connie said on December 21, 2013 at 8:56 am

    Nancy, I see you made Deadline Detroit’s quotes of the week, with your Facebook post about assuming your neighbors to be racists.

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  56. Prospero said on December 21, 2013 at 11:59 am

    I think PBR is a foul mixture of all of the Schlitz and Blatz people neither bought nor consumed, rebranded. I think all Spam was manufactured between 1940 and 1945, and I think Cheetos and styrofoam packing peanuts come from a single factory, but the Cheetos go down a separate production line where they are sprayed with orange tennis ball dye.

    I had the melancholy and somewhat depressing experience this morning of sending money to the Arizona DOC prisoner account of my niece, who thankfully has been relocated from Joe Arpaio’s hoosegow to another prison facility. She got mixed up with a theft for hillbilly heroin family and received twice as long a sentence as her ahole boyfriend because she wouldn’t testify against him. Anyway, I paid $6.50 to use my own debit card to transfer the cash, and another $5.00 to send her a short email, through a website called Jpay, which is the only way the state of AZ allows communication with an inmate. I was informed that to send actual physical mail, like a Christmas card, I’d be required to submit to a background check by AZ law enforcement. No thanks Sheriff Joe. Something seems fishy about the whole setup. Reeks of kickbacks.

    That “without a stitch” headline should go into a copy editor’s hall of fame. Brilliant.

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  57. brian stouder said on December 21, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    Connie – thanks for the tip about Deadline Detroit –

    and in the comments section, the comment from our Proprietress immediately drew a sustained, hostile response.

    My view is, if I ever find myself in disagreement with Nancy, then the one thing I know is – I’m almost certainly wrong!

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  58. Jolene said on December 22, 2013 at 10:29 am

    Brian, did you hear that the girl who was shot at the Colorado school–the one we both worried about–died? Sad, sad, sad.

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  59. brian stouder said on December 22, 2013 at 11:42 am

    Jolene, Shelby (our 15 year old HS freshman) told me that news yesterday. A week ago, when her dad told the press she wasn’t doing well, the terrible foreshadow really struck me.

    This random human cruelty is something that the world is never, ever short of

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  60. Prospero said on December 22, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    Funny stuff about the Awful Waffle. Don’t know how they missed the story about Jack White getting arrested for punching a guy out at a Waffle House.

    A classic Mark Trail Christmas message from Jack Elrod. The plots and the prose are cheesy as a holiday gift basket, but the artwork is wonderful, particularly on Sundays. Now if somebody would just teach Elrod about perspective, he wouldn’t have those monster frogs and terrifying beavers spouting Mark’s and Cherry’s dialogue.

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  61. Prospero said on December 22, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    Cautionary tale for all of those selfish hipsters and stupid GOPers whining about the bandaids and bucket o’ leeches health insurance policies they lost because Obama.

    Pogo Christmas carols. Why hasn’t some vocal group like Swingle Singers or Manhattan Transfer recorded these? I’d buy that.

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  62. Prospero said on December 22, 2013 at 5:29 pm

    I just used the ACA website to enrol in both medical and dental health plans, for less than 1/3 of the premiumt I was paying for crappy insurance two years ago and much smaller deductible. It was a breeze, 30 minutes, I’d say if it takes you longer, you’re in bad need of a neurologist. Much of the time involved ID verification, for which we have GOPers that hacked the site to thank. But this process was about as easy as setting up an online retail account. A load off my mind for the Christmas season.

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  63. brian stouder said on December 22, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    So, our resident freshman at Wayne New Tech played a Bruno Mars song for me, and asked what he means by “dancing Jews”? And after hitting Uncle Google, and finding a number of sites that interpret it as “dancing Jews”, we decided it was really “dancing juice” – which Urban Dictionary tells us is a reference to alcohol

    but it DID give us our laugh of the day

    (and it struck me that all the website entries are dated more than a year ago – so I’m well and truly behind the times!)

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  64. Deborah said on December 22, 2013 at 11:24 pm

    We spent the evening yesterday at the village of Abiquiu at an event for the library, it turned out to be quite sweet, the food was way better than I expected it to be, very spicy but good. Especially the deserts. Yum. We spent the night in the casita of some friends of ours who moved back to Connecticut because of health issues. There was no running water, they had a fireplace but it was stone cold when we got there and didn’t improve much before we left the next morning.

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  65. Brandon said on December 23, 2013 at 12:25 am

    Bruno Mars is from Hawaii. As a kid, he was an Elvis impersonator known as “Little Elvis” Hernandez. Now he’s one of the most famous singers in America.

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  66. coozledad said on December 23, 2013 at 9:55 am

    Toothless human feces burrito and periodic RNC onanism object Mike Huckabee threatens to stop sweating lard through his pores at the Cracker Barrel. Cracker Barrel relents:

    It’s like Mao: Power comes though the Barrel with its gums.

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  67. brian stouder said on December 23, 2013 at 11:01 am

    I think Cooz has the pun of the day!

    I’ll generally steer around holiday political debates with the extended family, but this double-D stuff DID elicit a “Bullshit!” remark from me the other evening, at such an event.

    Anybody who accuses A&E of ‘bowing to the pressures of being Politically Correct’ has to say the same thing about Crock-o-Shit Barrel, right?

    Before the designated duck despot spewed all his cultural/racial/social/human ignorance, I was slightly taken aback with how much merchandising they (the duck delegation) were achieving.

    Most any gas station/convenience store has a display of ducky-themed can-coolers and chewin’ tobacco and so on, with carboard cut-outs of guys who look like ZZ-Top….and at WalMart, they have whole aisles…

    and now the chief-Duck, a guy who quarterbacked ahead of Terry Bradshaw (wherever they went to school) has transformed his line of bullshit and crap into a political statement?

    Sort of a “Hell Yeah!!”/”The South will rise again” faux-iconoclasm/faux intellectual bravery statement?

    The guy is a genius, really…and he knows his market. Rubes who spend a high percentage of their modest incomes at c-stores and WalMart; and every so often eats the garbage they serve at Cracker Barrel* (and who doesn’t read GQ…didja notice the big time-lag between when the remarks were made, and when the word finally spread? Genius, I tell ya – genius!).

    *And didn’t Cracker Barrel come up in the last presidential race? – that the states where people get slopped…errr… dine there, were states who went for Romney? The crackers who run that CAFO chain apparently have the good business sense to surf people’s prejudices, and profit from it, too.
    “Ducks of a feather”, and all that, right?

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  68. LAMary said on December 23, 2013 at 11:39 am

    I have to wonder how many viewers of Duck Dynasty stopped or will stop watching because of what’s his face’s comments. I’ve seen about 45 seconds of Duck Dynasty an decided it was garbage and changed the channel. I have a fairly high tolerance of garbage too, as you probably know from my Real Housewives comments, but Duck Dynasty looks pretty scripted and seeing a bunch of guys attmempting to follow script and do dumb hick things doesn’t work for me, and I was not shocked when he made some comments that were offensive. People who agree with him aren’t GQ readers, as the article Cooz links to points out. What did shock me was all the coverage the comments got.

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  69. Dexter said on December 23, 2013 at 11:51 am

    Merry Christmas

    Louis Prima

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  70. Prospero said on December 23, 2013 at 12:12 pm

    Sort of in Duckman’s defense, you know he’s bound to have said offensive stuff during regular taping of the “show”, and they were edited out. I really can’t believe people find the canned drivel about gay people more offensive than his comments about how happy black people were in Lousyana before the civil rights agitators caused trouble. But what can anybody expect from a guy so ignorant he believes that God dictated the OT in Elizabethan English to mortal stenos. Kit Marlowe, the well-known catamite, was responsible for a lot of that King James version, you cheap redneck trick. Phil and the boys ought to go into the TeeVee fraud business with Pat Robertson

    Destined to become a holiday classic. From the geniuses in Yo La Tengo.

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  71. Brandon said on December 23, 2013 at 12:35 pm

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  72. Prospero said on December 23, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    I always liked the Benny Goodman big band Carnegie Hall version of Sing, Sing, Sing. Why? The rampaging elephant stampede brass arrangement. BG’s hallucinatorilly exotic clarinet soloing. And, duh, Gene Krupa. You’d think Buddy Rich might have shown a little humility having stolen all his tricks from the master.

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  73. Prospero said on December 23, 2013 at 12:44 pm

    Regarding Kalashnikov’s death: good riddance.

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  74. Brandon said on December 23, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Huckabee blamed his weight regain on a foot condition that kept him from running, but weight loss has as much to do with diet as exercise. Maybe he could take a break from eating at Cracker Barrel, either way.

    (Cracker Barrel has a lot of baggage of its own regarding discrimination.)

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  75. Bob (not Greene) said on December 23, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    “I would prefer to have invented a machine that people could use and that would help farmers with their work — for example a lawnmower.”

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  76. Prospero said on December 23, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    In the grand scheme,Kalashnikov was more Shiva, the Destroyer, than J. Robert Oppenheimer ever was. The world has Kalashnikov to thank for every nutjob with a Bushmaster.

    How can anybody vote for a Hucksterby that staged a second wedding cum reception while he was Arkansas goobernor, complet with registering for gifts at WalMart. That is one sleazy mofo.

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  77. coozledad said on December 23, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    prospero: This whole piece is good, but Auden and britten were in the process of an artistic falling out. britten knows precisely where the jewel of the poem is, and sets it accordingly, from the 6:30 mark to 7:56.

    This way you skip the first part, where I think Auden might be making a pussy joke.

    I think this part works for Christmas as well as it does St. Cecilia’s.

    Oh dear white children casual as birds,
    playing among the ruined languages
    So small beside their large confusing words
    So gay against the greater silences
    of dreadful things you did: O hang the head
    Impetuous child with the tremendous brain.
    O weep child, weep, O weep away the stain,
    Lost innocence who wished your lover dead
    weep for the lives your wishes never led.

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  78. LAMary said on December 23, 2013 at 3:09 pm

    I had a wonderful drawing teacher and mentor named Rush back in the 80s before Limbaugh became famous.

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  79. brian stouder said on December 23, 2013 at 4:29 pm

    Mary – way back in the day, I was a rightwing know-it-all (wannabe) National Review subscribing;’, Regenary Press readin’ Republican votin’ Jeane Kirkpatrick* lovin’ fan-boy….and truth be told, I STILL kind of think Jack Kemp would have made a tremendous president….

    and the first time I knew that the end was coming – for my stick-figure, oh-so-simple political views, was the day I saw a lengthy Letter to the Editor in National Review, from Rush H Limbaugh III (not to be confused with Jesus H Christ).

    I thought ‘If THAT guy is in National Review, then I’m gone’…and I let the subscription lapse.

    Still, my political apostasy took several more years, and was only completed with the abject debacle (to give it the most generous interpretation) of the official response to Hurricane Katrina.

    We couldn’t even get bottled water to the folks, for more than a week after the storm?

    I’ll be hard-pressed ever to vote for a “conservative” for national office, ever again, period.

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