These guys.

For many years now – ever since I read an Indianapolis Monthly cover story on Steve Hilbert, the high-flying CEO who drove Canseco into a ditch a few years back – I’ve thought the best job in America is to be an ex-wife of one of these guys, preferably before they hit the skids. Best of all would be for your hubs to fall in love with his secretary, or personal art dealer, or, in Hilbert’s case, the woman who jumped out of a cake at his son’s bachelor party, at the absolute height of their wealth and power, which is when so many of these splits tend to happen.

Seriously, imagine that scenario. It would be like getting released from prison, only instead of a suit of clothes and a parole officer, you get a condo in Aspen and $40 million. Jane Welch’s deal – that’s the one I want. Or Ivana Trump’s. You never again have to listen to him carp about the office, the board or the tennis coach, all of whom are somehow failing him. You don’t have to fuck him, or supervise his social calendar, or make nice with his equally odious colleagues. You are free to downsize and sit in front of that crackling Aspen fireplace, holding a warm cup of something in both hands and considering the rest of your life. Maybe do some more traveling – to Vietnam, or Russia, or India, places your ex wouldn’t even consider – or just fill your days with low-key lunches, reading and maybe regular dates with the tennis coach.

Of course, I was put on this train of thought by reading about yet another Donald Trump scam. The NYT has been tireless on these myriad disasters, the university and the casinos and all the rest of it. The most believable theory of why Trump won’t release his tax returns, to me anyway (I think it’s Mark Cuban’s), is the one that says he doesn’t have anywhere near as much as he’s been claiming, and the truth is clear if you look at the evidence in front of our faces. What billionaire needs to run as many low-level grifts and cheesy schemes as Trump does? “Trump: The Game,” Trump University, Trump steaks, even his dumb TV show. When you get your B card, you stop doing things like this:

In Oregon, Phyllis Fread was in her 80s, dealing with Parkinson’s disease and had been retired from teaching for almost two decades when Cambridge started calling her at home, where she lived alone. Cambridge salespeople telephoned Ms. Fread — who did not use the internet — 42 times trying to sell her networking services, a website and other products she did not need, according to an investigation by the Oregon attorney general’s office.

Over a two-year period, Cambridge charged her $14,593 for a video biography, calendars, a plaque and other items, including a news release in June 2010 titled “Phyllis J. Fread Reveals Her Secret to a Long Career in Education.” The release included a mention of Donald Trump Jr., saying he “was eager to share his extensive experience” with Cambridge clients.

Eventually, Ms. Fread reached her credit card limit and her son disconnected her telephone to stop Cambridge from calling. In a recorded interview with an investigator from the attorney general’s office, Ms. Fread became emotional as she recalled how “there were all kinds of things they’d push and I’d say, ‘I don’t want it at all.’”

“I remember saying, ‘Wait a minute, I don’t need anything, I don’t want anything.’ And then you couldn’t get a word in edgewise. I probably should have hung up,” she said. “But I didn’t.”

Cambridge was accused by the state of “unfair, deceptive and unconscionable practices” and settled without admitting guilt, issuing a refund to Ms. Fread in 2012. She died 18 months later.

“Cambridge” is:

Cambridge Who’s Who, a vanity publisher promising “branding services” that seemed to complement the real estate business (another duped woman) hoped to create. She paid thousands of dollars to Cambridge, whose spokesman and “executive director of global branding” was Mr. Trump’s eldest son, Donald Jr.

It’s not a Trump company, but when Junior joined it six years ago, his name became part of the call-center script. You wonder why a billionaire’s son would feel the need to work for such an outfit, even if he only stayed a year. My guess is, he learned at the foot of dad, and knows you never leave a dollar on the table, on the ground or in an 80-year-old woman’s pocket.

A good friend of mine died of AIDS 25 years or so ago, and one of the last arguments I remember having with him was over “The Art of the Deal,” which he was reading, becoming ever more besotted with Donald Trump as the pages turned. To him, Trump was about confidence, “class” and being unlike any other. I never read it, and in fact avoid all such books, even while I marvel over the stacks and stacks you see in places like airports. The format is as predictable as a rom-com: Photoshopped pic of the author on the cover, wearing a sweater; wide margins and big type; and air, nothing but air, between the covers.

Really, who thought that Bill Gates’ “The Road Ahead” would contain one secret to duplicating his own success on the road ahead? Who thought that after reading Welch’s “Winning,” one might go forth and, y’know, win? Thousands, evidently. Maybe millions.

If you’d have told me that one day this “author” of an empty-headed parade of “books” would be the GOP nominee for president, well… I’m sure you feel the same way.

On the other hand, if you’d told me that both Trump and Welch would run personally branded higher-ed programs at for-profit “institutions,” well, I’d believe that.

What am I talking about? I feel like I’ve sort of lost the plot here.

OK, then, moving on. NN.C is a full-service blog, so when you’re passing through my town, I will do my best to say hi in the flesh, as I did on Saturday, at Eastern Market with the bassets, Craig and Patty:


I seem to have gone blonde with my most recent highlights. Might want to tone that down, eh?

The week ahead sits with fanged teeth. (Pronounced “fanged” with two syllables, and you’ll get a sense of how much I’m not looking forward to it.) But in five more days, it’ll be over, so let’s get to it, eh?

Posted at 12:31 am in Current events |

51 responses to “These guys.”

  1. Deborah said on June 27, 2016 at 12:45 am

    Is that our Basset and Mrs. B? I love meeting nn.c people in the flesh.

    Tomorrow at the crack of dawn Little Bird and I are driving down to Albuqurque where she will be having a consultation with her surgeon about another possible round of surgery. This possibility came to light a couple of weeks ago and we want to see if it can happen while I’m here for this three week trip. This won’t be as serious as the one she had about a year and a half ago, at least we hope not, but it’s something that needs to be addressed.

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  2. Dexter said on June 27, 2016 at 1:45 am

    I would guess Basset is grieving for fellow Tennessean Ralph Stanley. XM radio music channels have been playing his music all weekend. Mr. Stanley lived a full life, but to note the passing of a true legend seems apropos…and another older gent , the youthful-at-heart Bill Cunningham has passed at age 87. Everybody who has accessed The New York Times over the years knows the work of Bill Cunningham, who was famous for fashion shoots on city streets, taken from the seat of his bicycle. He posted many multimedia page videos of NYC…loved his work.

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  3. Dexter said on June 27, 2016 at 1:45 am

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  4. beb said on June 27, 2016 at 1:52 am

    Wonderful that you were able to hook up with the bassets. My weekend was marked by driving back down to my Dad who may have had a stroke. Turned out to be a TIA but even that it concerning because they come back and one of these times might be a big one.

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  5. adrianne said on June 27, 2016 at 5:50 am

    Copied this one from a FB acquaintance, but it says it all about the evangelicals’ embrace of The Donald as a “baby Christian.”

    “And now they come to the movement’s moment of irreversible decadence, as James Dobson pimps out his Savior for a man who, whatever one thinks of him as a candidate, is clearly one of the most ungodly people ever to run for office.”

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  6. alex said on June 27, 2016 at 6:42 am

    And James Dobson is one of the most ungodly men ever purporting to represent God. It’s the most perfect marriage ever between two men, both world champion grifters.

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  7. ROGirl said on June 27, 2016 at 6:49 am

    Magical thinking is a powerful thing. When you believe that your reality sucks and someone comes along who not only supports you, but offers you an alternative future, I guess it’s too seductive to resist for some people.

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  8. Basset said on June 27, 2016 at 8:40 am

    indeed that’s us, and thanks again for the tour – Mrs. B insisted on going back Sunday morning before we headed out. More later…

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  9. brian stouder said on June 27, 2016 at 9:01 am

    An excellent photograph, indeed! – and, it looks like it was a beautiful day, too

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  10. Julie Robinson said on June 27, 2016 at 9:22 am

    Hi, M/M Basset! Nice to see you in (virtual) real life!

    I’ve been reading and listening to all the people who voted to Leave, based on the promises their leaders made about all the goodies they’d benefit from, only to have the promises immediately retracted. I’m hoping some lessons are learned in this country.

    This weekend we said goodbye to my SIL, who died about a month ago after a long and hard Alzheimer’s battle. Her immediate family is in crisis–husband in nursing home, son died a month before her, other’s son’s wife lost her mother to cancer a week later; just way too much crap going down for them to cope.

    So my dear hubby, who I always say is the best man in the world, took over and planned a memorial service, called in favors to hold it at the Old Fort (SIL was a historic reenactor and was married there), printed a booklet, scanned in hundreds of pictures for a slide show, arranged for a space for a meal and the food, etc. It was a tremendous amount of work but well worth the time as everyone was so appreciative of having the time together.

    If you ever think you don’t need a memorial get together of some kind, I will tell you that a lot of healing happened that day, and would ask you to reconsider. It turned out that even having the ashes in the house was burdening one family member, and spreading them really did help in letting go. I’m so glad we made the effort.

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  11. Jolene said on June 27, 2016 at 9:51 am

    Basset, you and your Missus look younger than I’d imagined you. Great, sunny picture.

    Julie, blessings to you and your husband for your kindness.

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  12. Judybusy said on June 27, 2016 at 10:05 am

    Great photo! I love seeing people’s pictures. I wish we’d been able to meet up in Reykjavik.

    Deborah, best wishes on the surgery consult.

    Julie, what a gift your husband gave to the family!

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  13. nancy said on June 27, 2016 at 10:10 am

    Julie, what Dennis did was one of those great, practical-yet-emotional mitzvahs we should all practice. I remember, in Anne Lamott’s book about her first year of (single) parenthood, her friends would come by when she was truly crazed and offer to help, somehow. She asked them to do stuff like clean the bathroom, and they did. That’s the kind of baby gift a real friend gives.

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  14. Kirk said on June 27, 2016 at 10:10 am

    From previous thread: Looks like Pam Zekman, now 71, is still hard at it doing investigations for WBBM-TV in Chicago.

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  15. Judybusy said on June 27, 2016 at 10:35 am

    Good decision from the Supreme court re: the Texas abortion law which placed substantial burdens on clinics proviing the service. Per Justice Breyer, writing for the majority: “‘We conclude,’ Justice Breyer wrote, ‘that neither of these provisions offers medical benefits sufficient to justify the burdens upon access that each imposes. Each places a substantial obstacle in the path of women seeking a previability abortion, each constitutes an undue burden on abortion access, and each violates the Federal Constitution.’”

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  16. adrianne said on June 27, 2016 at 10:41 am

    Yes, I had called the abortion law decision – not even Kennedy could go along with such an obvious attempt to undermine existing law.

    Julie, your hubs sounds like a real mensch! God bless him for stepping up with the memorial.

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  17. jcburns said on June 27, 2016 at 11:01 am

    I think we need a life-size, cutout full-color pic of Nancy’s head (on a stick?) that we can poke into the lower right hand corner of any pictures we take.

    basset, is that a Google Fiber t-shirt? We have a Georgia-shaped one of those.

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  18. Julie Robinson said on June 27, 2016 at 11:45 am

    Mensch is a good descriptor. I don’t know how I got so fortunate. It was really fun scanning the photos; since she was 16 years older than him it was a look into parts of her life we hadn’t known.

    Lamott’s Grace makes it abundantly clear that grace is usually delivered in the flesh, from fellow sinners and goof-ups. We can all show someone else that we care, even when we’ve got our own problems. Sometimes it’s just a quick call, card, email, or even Facebook posting. Or cleaning the bathroom.

    What a relief that Supreme Court gridlock didn’t prevent this decision. I’m hopeful that a couple of Indiana’s new onerous laws will also lose their legal challenges now.

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  19. Jerri said on June 27, 2016 at 11:46 am

    I love seeing Nancy and the Bassets! I’m taking care of my mother in Florida again. After breaking her arm in January, she broke her hip in May. Her friends and neighbors watched over her when she was in rehab and I’m grateful that they gave me that extra time to be home in Maryland. Nancy’s so right about what real friends do–whether it’s cleaning the refrigerator when she wasn’t home for 6 weeks, or dropping off extra plastic bags 10 minutes ago.

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  20. brian stouder said on June 27, 2016 at 12:00 pm

    …And by the way – I like the highlights – and wouldn’t vote for blondexit!…and basset has more hair than me

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  21. MichaelG said on June 27, 2016 at 12:22 pm

    Little Bird and Deborah, my best wishes for good things with the surgery. Good luck.

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  22. LAMary said on June 27, 2016 at 12:23 pm

    In April of 1972, my apartment roommate moved out suddenly, taking light fixtures and anything nailed to the walls and leaving the apartment an incredible mess. About an hour after walking in on that I got a phone call telling me to get home immediately. My father was in the hospital and I knew from my brother’s tone on the phone call that my father had either died or was about to. This was a Friday afternoon. Two of my friends stopped by to see if I wanted to do anything on a Friday night. They saw the trashed apartment and I told them that I had to get to the train station and head up to NYC and I had no cash. These were pre ATM days and no kid in college had a credit card. My friends scraped together enough for a train ticket and sent me on my way. My father had in fact died that afternoon. I spent a week at home. When I got back to my apartment the walls were repaired and repainted. The light fixtures were replaced. Everything had been cleaned. I will never, ever forget the guys who did this for me.

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  23. Sherri said on June 27, 2016 at 12:34 pm

    On the day that SCOTUS strikes down the Texas abortion law, let’s give a shoutout to Wendy Davis, who kicked off this fight with a filibuster in the Texas lege.

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  24. Deborah said on June 27, 2016 at 12:39 pm

    Yes, cleaning the bathroom for someone is so much better than thoughts and prayers.

    LA Mary, so sorry about your dad, but boy do you have some great friends.

    We are back from the surgeon consult and Little Bird is having surgery on the 13th. I was scheduled to go back to Chicago on the 14th but I’m going to stick around for a couple of weeks. Little Bird is having a tumor removed from the side of her right knee, it started acting up a couple of weeks ago which scared us but she couldn’t get in to see her Dr until today. She won’t be able to bend her knee for awhile after the surgery so she’ll need some assistance getting around. Just knowing that the damn tumor will be gone in a couple of weeks made us both feel so much better.

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  25. Charlotte said on June 27, 2016 at 3:19 pm

    The killer mitzvah of all time. Guy I knew in high school and college — a swimmer and a really great guy. His younger brother killed himself, at home, with a shotgun. The swim team boys, high school kids at the time, went in while the family was out and cleaned the room. Still makes me cry to think of it.

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  26. Dexter said on June 27, 2016 at 3:21 pm

    Deborah…Little Bird and you are on my well-wish list. I am also worried, as our daughter called yesterday with troubling news of an MRI reading of her knee revealing some kind of what may be pre-cancerous nodules or else the cancer is already there. I am still unclear as to what is going on and asap, I will try to contact our daughter who is a nurse practitioner and knows this stuff.

    I realize Game of Thrones has taken over social media today, but damn, not one word anywhere about “Ray Donovan” returning to Showtime last night? The lack of attention worries me that the show may have lost viewers. That detective show filmed in Detroit a couple years got axed quickly….

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  27. Dexter said on June 27, 2016 at 3:25 pm

    …and now I am off to renew my Ohio driver’s license. Last time I passed the vision test without eyeglasses. I’d say I am at best 50% / 50% pass or fail this time…spectacles in hard case in my pocket…let’s go see wha’ hoppens….

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  28. nancy said on June 27, 2016 at 3:31 pm

    Dexter, I watched “Ray Donovan” Friday night — for some reason Showtime dumped it on the on-demand queue early. I liked it a lot, and I see Ann Biderman is back as showrunner. So I have high hopes. Love Liev Schreiber. Love Paula Malcomson. Love the whole cast.

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  29. Jakash said on June 27, 2016 at 3:33 pm

    “People Are Replacing Calvin With Donald Trump In ‘Calvin And Hobbes’ Strips And It’s Terrifyingly Accurate”

    Hadn’t occurred to me that a cartoon six-year old established the template for Rumplethinskin’s campaign decades ago, but it seems obvious, now…

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  30. Dave said on June 27, 2016 at 3:39 pm

    I just heard the Texas attorney general on the radio talking about the ruling and how they were going to go back and try to recraft a law that would pass scrutiny. You know they’re never going to give up as long as they grow a breath.

    I can just imagine without looking (or streaming) that the guest on WOWO this afternoon is that Allen County Right to Life woman is the guest on the radio talking to the afternoon host.

    Dexter, I couldn’t begin to pass a test without spectacles.

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  31. MichaelG said on June 27, 2016 at 4:01 pm

    Shit! Shit! My A/C just quit. It’s forecast to be 105 or so today, Tuesday and Wednesday. I can’t get anyone out here before Wed. AM. Welcome to sauna city.

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  32. Danny said on June 27, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    MichaelG, we just met my parents in Sacto and are on the I80 driving to Napa right now. Going to be hot here all week. At least it’s a dry, mirthless heat.

    Thursday we head over to my brother’s house in Tahoe City for the 4th. It will be nice up there.

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  33. Sherri said on June 27, 2016 at 4:20 pm

    Man, I’m so sorry MichaelG. Time to go to the movies or hang out in a coffee shop, or if you’re desperate, get a hotel room! Seriously, what a lousy time for this to happen, right after surgery.

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  34. MichaelG said on June 27, 2016 at 4:26 pm

    I’ve got a whole house fan and a floor fan. The floor fan isn’t doing too bad just now. I’ll run the whole house fan every now and then to change the air in the attic. That might help a little.

    The lake will be great, if a little crowded this weekend, Danny. Enjoy.

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  35. Julie Robinson said on June 27, 2016 at 4:27 pm

    It’s been many, many years since I could pass the eye test without my glasses.

    MichaelG, get thee to a hotel room pronto. They may fill up fast. Maybe they’ll give you a medical discount.

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  36. Joe K said on June 27, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    Fill your bathtub with cold water and lay in it till you cool down.
    Pilot Joe

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  37. Joe K said on June 27, 2016 at 4:42 pm

    Went to the tigers game Saturday, sat in a sweet suite down 3rd base line. Food,private bathroom,drinks,first 6 pitches Detroit threw Cleveland hit 2 home runs and hit 4 for the game, I saw Sunday they hit 4 in one inning, wtf the tigers?
    Pilot Joe

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  38. Sue said on June 27, 2016 at 4:59 pm

    Iceland beats England.

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  39. Sherri said on June 27, 2016 at 5:00 pm

    It looks like our luck with parental health may be running out. My parents are still doing fine, but my husband’s mother and stepfather both are having a lot of problems at once. My husband just got back from 10 days spent dealing with issues with both of them, with his mother in the hospital and him having to drive his stepfather back and forth to Birmingham twice (a ~3 hour one way drive), as well as arrange a limo to drive him once before he could get there. As soon as he got home, we got a call that his stepfather needs a pacemaker, so his mom’s plan that she was going to drive him to Birmingham today for his appointment with the eye surgeon and they would spend the night before returning wouldn’t work because he needs to see the cardiologist tomorrow. So we called up the limo company again, and he made it to Birmingham today. I know this because I got a call from him in Birmingham when he was done with his appointment because he had neglected to get the phone number of the limo company to call to pick him up. Of course, of all the people he could have called (his wife, my husband), I’m the one who doesn’t have it.

    My husband is an only child, and his stepfather has a daughter who is in South Carolina (all parents are in Tennessee). We don’t know her very well, because my MIL didn’t marry again until about 9 years ago, and so we’ve spent very little time with her. I know she went through an unpleasant divorce a few years ago, and I get the impression that her father is still helping her out some with money, as well as helping her 20 year old daughter out with money.

    My husband tried to have conversations with them about making changes to adjust to their health status. They live in an inconvenient place, where driving is essential. His mom has been diagnosed with myasthenia gravis, and is not responding particularly well to treatment. His stepfather suffered a serious eye injury about a year ago, and has had several surgeries (in Birmingham) to try and deal with it, but still has a vision deficit in that eye. She’s not comfortable with him driving, we’re not that comfortable with either of them driving, he is adamant about not giving up driving, and refuses to consider moving to a retirement community.

    All very frustrating. We’re 3000 miles away, by choice, but that doesn’t make it any easier.

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  40. Sherri said on June 27, 2016 at 5:15 pm

    The Upshot explains exit polls, and why they are systematically biased:

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  41. Deborah said on June 27, 2016 at 5:40 pm

    My 97 year old MIL gave up driving when she was in her mid 80s. She’s sharp as a tack mentally but she didn’t trust her eyes. Now she’s starting to suffer from macular degeneration but it’s just in the beginning stages. We expect her to live to at least 100. Hopefully she will keep her relative health.

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  42. Sherri said on June 27, 2016 at 5:50 pm

    One of the challenges with these discussions with my in-laws is that they aren’t that old. They’re only in their late 70s, so it’s understandable that they’re not quite ready to face the loss of independence. Unfortunately, their declining health is forcing some realities.

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  43. Sherri said on June 27, 2016 at 5:51 pm

    I have to admit, that while my head says keep Elizabeth Warren in the Senate, when I see Clinton and Warren on stage together, my heart says YES! ME WANT!

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  44. Dexter said on June 27, 2016 at 6:16 pm

    Dumb embarrassed ASS! Me. The clerk at Ohio DMV got a really hearty laugh at me when , after I took the eye test (and passed easily sans eyewear) she basically asked me why I was there. “…because this license expires in 2018.” A speck of dirt altered my view of my license through the wallet’s plastic window and I misread it. Talk about embarrassment. Sheesh.

    After contemplating renting a motor home or van and driving out to Las Vegas and then on to Monterey and Carmel, I quickly, after sleeping on the prospect for just one night, awoke to what a ridiculous idea that was, what with seventeen construction sites on I-70 alone, from Columbus to where you exit south for Las Vegas. We’re flying to Las Vegas in about six weeks and then taking a side trip via SUV to the Central Coast so I can visit my old stompin’ grounds again. I won’t be bossing my daughter and son-in-law around as to the places we visit, but I am insisting on spending time at the Steinbeck Center in Salinas. I am always picking up a Steinbeck novel and reading at least a few pages. The next 40 days will go slowly as I am ready for wheels up right now, damn it.
    Glad you and Jolene watched Ray Donovan, nance. My Facebook pal Drew O’Drew lives 30 miles east of Belfast and a while back he spotted Paula Malcomson running for and jumping onto a Belfast city bus (“just like a regular person”, said Drew). She was indeed born in Northern Ireland in 1970.

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  45. Kirk said on June 27, 2016 at 6:40 pm

    Jakash@29: Thanks for sharing that. Links such as that are just one of the numerous benefits of hanging out here.

    Dexter@44: Great story on yourself. If bureaucracy were more efficient, that would be an automatic trigger requiring you to wear your glasses.

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  46. Julie Robinson said on June 27, 2016 at 7:54 pm

    Sherri, me want Warren too, but I think she’s too important in the Senate. I hope she’ll campaign regularly the way she did today in Ohio. She was on fire, and the crowd was loving it.

    Am so sorry about your in-laws. Eldsters are often stubborn without merit. I have more stories than time about dealing with my sister’s massive health issues at a distance. When she retired we moved her to the same town as our kids, which means they get new burdens, but they’ve been a great help. We aren’t going to put our kids through that, we’re going to move to where they are early. I really see how you should move before it’s going to be overwhelming; Mom waited too long and it’s been really hard on her. (And me, natch.)

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  47. Suzanne said on June 27, 2016 at 8:47 pm

    So true, Julie. My parents live not too far and even nearer to my siblings, but they still live in their own home which is getting to be too much. I keep dropping gentle hints like “Have you given any thought to moving into a apartment or villa?” which always gives me the answer of “No. We like it here.”

    Elderly parents mixed with siblings is always interesting, too. My one sibling would load ’em up and move ’em into a senior apartment tomorrow, the heck with what they want. My other sibling keeps insisting that a move would be too hard on them and they are managing and we can help them. I worry more that if the healthier one goes, the other (beginning dementia) will have to move immediately on top of losing a spouse. It’s also a conversation no one wants to have but we need to come to some sort of agreement, I think. I guess it’s a bit like trying to get Congress to do something.

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  48. Basset said on June 27, 2016 at 9:31 pm

    Jolene, how old do you think we are? (Insert smiley face figure here)

    JCBurns, it sure is. Crews are laying rolls of orange cable on our street, we can only hope…

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  49. Sherri said on June 27, 2016 at 10:33 pm

    I’m okay with letting parents live where they want to, as long as it’s a choice made with the understanding of the tradeoffs. We live 3000 miles away. We are not moving. That constrains our ability to be at their beck and call. If they want to stay there, then adjustments have to be made. Fortunately, we have money, so it is possible for us to hire a limo to take my stepfather-in-law to Birmingham (not cheap!), but as I’ve been trying to bring into the discussion, is it possible that there is an eye surgeon closer by who might be sufficient for follow up care? What resources (friends/neighbors) can they call on close by? My husband’s late father’s sister and her husband live there, but they’re in their 80s, and one of them has macular degeneration and can’t drive, so the help from family is limited.

    My parents also live way out of town (not in the same town; they’re 3.5 hours and a time zone change away), and I know they want to stay where they are as long as they possibly can. I think they have a better sense of what that means, though; they’ve been country people their whole lives. They’ve been part of a rural community that has taken old people to town to the grocery when they got their own groceries, that fixed things in their houses when they broke, and took them to doctor’s appointments. One of the reasons I didn’t jump up and go out to handle this for my husband this time was that I’ve grown up learning about this sort of thing and he hasn’t, and he needs to know. That, and my stepfather-in-law drives me crazy.

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  50. Jolene said on June 28, 2016 at 12:11 am

    Based on the picture, Basset, I’d say mid-50s. From your writing, I’d have said older. Take this as a compliment. Though you still look young and fit, you write with the wisdom of the elders.

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  51. Basset said on June 28, 2016 at 11:35 am

    you are too kind… We’re both sixty, I think my liver is about a hundred and fourteen though.

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