Winter is here.

I woke up this morning to wind — the flap of the bathroom vent…flapper, or whatever you call it. The housing timbers creaking. The sense of a new chill in the air, even as you can’t actually feel it, snug in your bed.

And sure enough, the temperature had fallen 20 degrees overnight. Plus the wind. It happens. January. Time to dig in. Except all the snow melted when it was in the 40s for the last few days.

Fortunately, I got up early and put some short ribs in the slow cooker. I set it on Low but still came home seven hours later to find them press seriously cooked down almost to goo. Delicious, delicious, mouth-melty goo, perfect for a night like this.

Without a glass of wine, but I don’t even miss it. (Too much.)

A day at the office today. I like those; it’s good to be around people, even without my Aeron. No food truck, though, and with the wind and the 20-degree temperatures, we ordered in Jimmy John’s, aka the world’s most boring sandwich, redeemed by delivery. I got mine as a lettuce wrap, for extra disappointment. Really hope they bring the food truck back, soon.

So now it’s Wednesday night, I’m on the couch trying to think of something to blog about while letting “The Big Short” run in the background. Just glanced up to see this quote on the screen:

“Everyone, deep in their hearts, is waiting for the end of the world to come.”

― Haruki Murakami, 1Q84

Which of course made me think of the upcoming inauguration. Then I looked at the NYT home page. Saw this:

Who looks at that second bullet point and doesn’t just let one’s eyes glide away? Four years of this ahead. May we live in interesting times.

No wonder the world went apeshit over Mariah Carey last weekend. Something else to think about.

Read Jon Carroll today. He doesn’t have any great ideas, but it’s something to read.

Sorry to read about Maggie Jochild in the comments yesterday. I honestly consider it an enormous tribute that other writers show up to read here, and she’s a Writer. From her own Twitter bio:

Third generation lesbian, 6th generation Texan, radical poet pacifist novelist disabled optimistic freakishly-good memory strong strong strong

Let’s hope so.

Posted at 7:39 pm in Current events |

57 responses to “Winter is here.”

  1. Suzanne said on January 4, 2017 at 9:05 pm

    I don’t know why I am so amazed, but I am, that the GOP clearly has no plan for addressing the healthcare problems. None. After complaining about the ACA all this time. Amazing. Simply amazing.

    And this cold, windy weather does not help my mood either. Really have no use for winter any more.

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  2. Deborah said on January 4, 2017 at 9:33 pm

    Yeah, repeal and replace, my fanny. Like you said Suzanne after all that time they couldn’t come up with a replacement. That’s because there isn’t one, Obamacare was about as good as it could get, given all the compromises etc. Not perfect, but a lot better than nothing.

    As I’ve said here before the healthcare situation is my biggest issue, obviously because it effects me and mine, a lot. After LB’s surgery and the ride back to Santa Fe, I went to the pharmacy to get her pain meds. Of course there was a glitch and I had to pay full price for them because the pharmacy couldn’t come up with the Dr’s DEA number and the pills are narcotics. Damn them. Plus it took a full frigging hour to get through that, all I wanted was to go home and eat something, I had dropped LB at home before I went so she could crawl into bed. Plus she used to get all of her meds at CVS, but they no longer take her insurance (that’s not CVS’s decision they say, but the insurance company’s) so I had to go to a place called Sav-on which is in Albertson’s a grocery store that I despise, but it’s close enough for LB to walk to when I’m not around.

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  3. basset said on January 4, 2017 at 10:14 pm

    Mrs B’s about to get her cataracts done… just the thought of someone deliberately cutting into the eyeball, aaaack.

    been watching the BBC North American tv news, one Skype interview after another… come on, people, you’re supposed to be the gold standard.

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  4. brian stouder said on January 4, 2017 at 10:26 pm

    basset – along with all the others – here’s wishing all the best for Mrs B and you.

    Looks like I will have the (genuine) honor of being a pallbearer this weekend; and the world will keep turning

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  5. alex said on January 4, 2017 at 10:38 pm

    They’ll probably do to the ACA what Pence did in Indiana. In order to make expanded Medicaid politically palatable to the screaming meemies whose minds had been poisoned against it, he just rebranded it with a hip name — HIP 2.0 (or Healthy Indiana Plan) — and threw in some bullshit allowing them to smack the poor around with one hand while while doling out the despised handouts with the other.

    Nancy, I couldn’t have described the Jimmy John’s experience any better. I had one of their sandwiches last week when all the good places near work were taking a holiday break. I had mine without the extra disappointment, I’m sorry to report, and also the hot peppers I’d requested and paid extra for.

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  6. LAMary said on January 5, 2017 at 2:00 am

    I start the new job tomorrow. I was supposed to start on Tuesday but the holidays delayed my background check and drug screen results. Luckily I’m not a drug addict or a criminal. I’m working for the same company that operates the rehab part of Cleveland Clinic, Baylor Hospital, Emory University Hospital, and here in LA, UCLA and Cedars Sinai. They’ve got lot of other facilities as well. It all sounds nice and solid and reputable to me. I just have to hire three floors of employees for them to start.Yay.

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  7. Dexter said on January 5, 2017 at 2:13 am

    Stay strong, Maggie.

    Instead of discussing the smokiness of Scots whiskies (Scotch to neophytes) and the comparisons of bourbons, I now occasionally get into coffee discussions on a very light-weight level. Today the topic was coffee and coffee houses…a couple guys were comparing Biggby’s to Starbucks, I only contributed that I love TJ’s Bay Blend beans to grind and I also really love canned grounds of Bustelo’s .

    December, 2015, a radio producer who get lots of mic time was going thru a nasty breakup with his lady of 8 years…this was only recently revealed What everyone knew about was his drunken blow-out, 2 full 750s of icy vodka and all kinds of other shit…blackout, ambo, cops, cracked-open head, hospital…all in one night.
    On his own, rejecting rehab (no, no, no) he quit it all, even Marlboros, for 11 months. Then he went on Tinder and back of the sauce. He was understandably ready for female hook-ups, but booze? Oh yeah…it’s for sure, no aftercare, no chance lf maintaining sobriety. He just is doing it his way, Godspeed. I like listening to this guy on the radio, but I don’t write emails abut sobriety because, we all know now, he’s one of the 80% who relapse…or since he rejected the offer of even one AA meeting (from his recovering boss)—the 100% who are time bombs…drink up.

    From left field: Anybody watch any of the TCM Hitch-fest? “Rope”, the film about two gay men murderers (John Dall & Farley Granger) had always escaped me. Now that is just one helluva movie…brilliant screenplay.

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  8. Connie said on January 5, 2017 at 6:44 am

    This week and next is my big library move. I have a food fund. Tuesday we checked our neighboring pizza place. Yesterday I gave a couple of staff members a handful of cash and said go get us a lunch for 25. Have I ever told you I hate Subway? Bring on the Jimmie Johns.

    Our Subway order was half turkey and half vegetarian. I am becoming a big fan of Tubbys as well.

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  9. basset said on January 5, 2017 at 8:19 am

    Dexter, IIRC “Rope” was done all in one shot, with the camera panning across walls & other neutral areas to allow for film reload. Haven’t seen it myself, just wondered how that affected your enjoyment of the movie.

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  10. Peter said on January 5, 2017 at 9:26 am

    I missed most of yesterday’s comments, so pardon my tardiness: Hoping for the best for Maggie and Margot, and best wishes for a speedy recovery to Little Bird!

    Deborah, I felt for you about the change in procedure time – that happened to me a few weeks ago – I was scheduled for 1:00 PM, then got a call at 9:00 AM “can you come in RIGHT NOW?”. I sped over and laid on a gurney – until 2:00 PM.

    My lovely spouse spent the time sitting next to me and eating a bag of puffy Cheetos, which led her to observe that it isn’t fair to use the Cheetos term for our incoming Leader – Cheetos taste too good for that!

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  11. Julie Robinson said on January 5, 2017 at 9:55 am

    When the Jimmy John’s opened here our college kid got a job there making deliveries on his bike, and he truly loved both getting paid to exercise and the juicy tips he got from downtown law offices. At that time they were emphasizing quality ingredients and fresh, fresh, fresh.

    After he’d moved on, and the news came out about the JJ’s owner being an exotic game hunter, I had no appetite for their sandwiches. Then we heard the local owner had sold the business, and I guess quality went out the window.

    I was at a meeting where JJ’s was served, and couldn’t believe how small and poor quality the sandwiches were. Then I saw the receipt and was horrified. I think they charged $1.50 for the little bags of chips. For a third of the cost we could have gone to the grocery and bought bread, lunchmeat, and giant chip bags.

    This morning I got a notification from Google maps asking me to confirm yesterday’s activity. It showed exactly what time I left the house, how long it took me to drive to work, exactly when I left work, and that it took a minute less to drive back home. Of course I didn’t confirm it, or post to Facebook as it also suggested. Ugh. I love Google, but this makes me uncomfortable.

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  12. Suzanne said on January 5, 2017 at 10:01 am

    This is a very good assessment of why rural, white people think and vote as they do. I have lived among them for much of my life and would say this pretty much sums it up.

    I am also tiring of these endless articles on how and why flyover country does what it does. Immigrants and minorities are told to buck up, suck it up, and adapt. Rural white seem to think they are entitled to ignore their own advice.

    (Sorry for the long link, but I don’t know how to shorten)

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  13. nancy said on January 5, 2017 at 10:29 am

    The sub-sandwich pecking order is interesting — Subway at the bottom, JJ’s in the middle (with the value-add of delivery), with Potbelly’s (which I like fairly well) above them. Dunno where Tubby’s is, because I don’t think I’ve ordered from them. But the grilling/toasting makes a huge difference. I could forgive JJ’s lack thereof when they used better ingredients, but now, meh.

    And that seems to exhaust my thoughts on subs. I remember when I was in Paris, buying a sandwich from a street vendor while my friend and I hurried to the train station. It was just vegetables and some mayo on bread, and I still remember how great it was. The French have a way.

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  14. Sherri said on January 5, 2017 at 10:38 am

    If I recall, Jimmy Johns was requiring its sandwich makers to sign non-compete clauses, so their poorly paid employees couldn’t leave there and to work at Subways. Can’t have those special sandwich and training trade secrets getting out, right?

    Julie, you can avoid that kind of monitoring from Google maps by not being logged into your Google account. Of course, if you use gmail for your main mail account, that’s harder to do.

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  15. Deborah said on January 5, 2017 at 10:42 am

    Before I retired, the place where I worked used to order from Jimmy Johns for design director meetings or whatnot, until we all complained royally, then they started getting stuff from Chipotle and we all liked that much better. Jimmy Johns founder is a raving right winger if I’m not mistaken, I try to steer clear of places like that. Except for Home Depot, I can’t live without Home Depot in Santa Fe.

    Little Bird is feeling MUCH better today. It’s amazing what a good night’s sleep will do (with pain mess of course). She had general anesthesia, the kind where they intubate, it takes a while to get that out of your system I guess.

    Peter, the woman who called us in early for LB’s surgery, came in to the prep room and apologized profusely, that helped. We didn’t complain or anything, she did it of her own accord. There were lots of people in the waiting room and prep rooms, everyone must be doing what we’re doing, getting all of their healthcare done now before the bottom drops out. Damn the Republicans!

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  16. Deborah said on January 5, 2017 at 10:44 am

    Pain meds, but I guess “mess” is descriptive too, given the oxy problems in places like Kentucky etc.

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  17. brian stouder said on January 5, 2017 at 10:47 am

    When Pam and I are in the mood for something quick, and not burgers or tacos, we’ve been going to Noodles with some regularity.

    Not overly complex (their menu is much more straight-forward than, for example, Panda Express), and not over priced.

    Suzanne, what a story! Alex and I discussed that very thing hereabouts, some time ago; the fictional ‘never-was’ nature of Mayberry (the town that has no bad side!) and its folksy, unarmed sheriff – at the same time that Walter Cronkite was reporting on riots in the streets and a raging war on the other side of the world and police brutality

    It was always a fairy tale, and Andy sorta told us so, in A Face in the Crowd

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  18. Julie Robinson said on January 5, 2017 at 10:59 am

    Sherri, I’ve an Android phone so no choice. And ironically I’m planning on using gmail more because my yahoo was hacked, again. Better choices for email?

    Not to completely deflate the Mayberry myth, but both Andy Griffith and Don Knotts were big time boozers with multiple divorces.

    We don’t have either Tubby’s or Potbelly’s here but have enjoyed Potbelly’s while traveling. Of course they all have the same nutrition problems, so I’ll continue to haul in a sandwich, carrot & celery, and apple for lunch on the days I’m at work over the lunch hour. And save $$ for that mortgage down in Orlando, too!

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  19. nancy said on January 5, 2017 at 11:02 am

    Noodles was a pleasant stop when Kate was younger and a pickier eater, as the through-line for the whole place was in the name. She could get mac and cheese, and I could get something Asian or Mediterranean with a bit more flavor.

    Often, we both got mac and cheese. Sometimes it’s just what the doctor ordered.

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  20. Suzanne said on January 5, 2017 at 11:02 am

    I stopped patronizing Jimmy John’s when a friend told me that a relative of hers, a young man, told her of the JJ’s owner whooping it up with everybody at a strip joint the young man was visiting. Ever since, I see a JJ’s and think, Ick.

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  21. Sherri said on January 5, 2017 at 11:16 am

    “Better” is very much a personal decision when it comes to email. An alternative choice in free emails is, which doesn’t scan your email to produce targeted ads. There are still ads, but not based on your email. (Every email service scans emails to detect spam, of course.) Some people prefer the gmail interface, other prefer the outlook interface; I’m agnostic because I don’t like any of the web mail interfaces.

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  22. brian stouder said on January 5, 2017 at 11:22 am

    Y’know, nudey bars just sounded so enthralling, back when I was 17 or 18.

    Fort Wayne had a number of places that wouldn’t card you, and a buddy of mine and I probably went to various ones a half-dozen times, and then… happened.

    One of the performers sat at our table for a few moments, and as we talked with her, she became a human being. She told us that her plan was to save some money and go to Florida, and there – she could – I dunno what her plan was, but you could see (almost certainly) bad roads coming next, in her life.

    And that was it; the shine was off of it

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  23. Jakash said on January 5, 2017 at 11:49 am

    Re: Suzanne’s WaPo article @ 12–

    “‘Now it’s about secular progressivism, not the values you get out of this book,’ like honesty and hard work, said Rowe, 72, jabbing his finger at the leather Bible on his office desk.” How you get from those values and that book to voting for a lying, born-on-third-base, twice-divorced, pussy-grabbing libertine is the question. You don’t want transgender folks in the “wrong” bathroom, so you vote for a guy who brags about walking into the women’s changing area at a beauty contest. What Bible verse justifies being that misguided, I wonder.

    Maybe when Il Duce is done reviving the coal industry, he can bring back all those North Carolina tobacco jobs next, ’cause I sure miss the days when you couldn’t walk into a bar without enjoying the fragrant assault of the billows of second-hand smoke.

    “Memories at odds with facts” it says. Ya think? Now there’s a summation of this election that’s as succinct as one could hope for.

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  24. Jakash said on January 5, 2017 at 11:59 am

    I hate Jimmy John’s and can never understand why it’s popular, at all. Potbelly is swell, but the toasting doesn’t make up for the lack of vegetables, IMHO. The sorry excuse for a pickle slice they put on there just makes me admire their ability to make it so thin. I understand that people think Subway is lame, but it’s my go-to, both for the price and because I enjoy half of my turkey sub being a variety of veggies.

    Noodles and Company is a serviceable alternative. Pretty cheap, nice variety, and adequate quality. I wish there were more Fazoli’s around. Rather than a burger and fries, we’d rather get a quick pasta marinara and salad while on the road, but the pickings are slim.

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  25. Connie said on January 5, 2017 at 12:04 pm

    Tubby’s has lots of stores in the greater Detroit metro area. So far they are regional but you can buy a franchise. Any of their hot steak sandwiches will do.

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  26. Scout said on January 5, 2017 at 12:21 pm

    I can’t do Jimmy John’s. Just can’t even. Potbelly is OK, but there are limited veg options there. $4 gets me a footlong veggie at Subway, and under my direction my ‘sandwich artist’ will stuff it as full of fresh veggies as I request. Plus the bread is always fresh. Can’t beat it. Living in a foodie city we have tons of non chain options for great sandwiches, though, so I only do Subway every so often.

    Only 15 more days until Hair Furor becomes the most powerful man in the world. I’m depressed.

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  27. Julie Robinson said on January 5, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    Hair Furor, heh, heh. I may have to steal that one, Scout.

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  28. beb said on January 5, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    Apparently Il Douche is on a tear (now) to restructure the CIA Can’t say I ever thought well of the CIA — to many “black sites” and democracies toppled — but I’d rather have the CIA warts and all that whatever the Putin-puppet comes up with. Because you know if the orange monster gets his hands on it the CIA will have a big hole when it comes to Russian intel.

    I get tired of being told I’m not a “Real” American because I live in a large city and vote Democrat, don’t go to church and don’t listen to Country-Western music. I’ve worked all my life, paid my taxes and never used any of the social safety net. What part of that isn’t ‘real’ or ‘American?’

    On a less angry note… Every so often Duncan Black (aka Atrios) posts this segment from Catch-22 because it so perfectly captures the Republican mind-set.

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  29. Peter said on January 5, 2017 at 1:19 pm

    Noodles is not bad – my son loves the Udon.

    He also worked for JJ’s for a while – but it’s hard making bank when you have to rely on tips in a college town.

    Potbelly’s owner is not that far to the left of JJ’s crazy CEO, by the way….

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  30. Charlotte said on January 5, 2017 at 1:26 pm

    This is the line that got me. “Before Obamacare, they had no health insurance and paid out of pocket. Their monthly bill will rise from $115 a month now to $435 next year …”
    Paid out of pocket for what? Doctors appointments? They sure weren’t “paying out of pocket” for cancer, or chronic health issues, or a premature baby.
    Is this the core problem with these folks? They’re being forced to carry health insurance at all? Do they also not insure their cars? And shame on WaPo for pointing out that not carrying health insurance is playing chicken with your savings, house, livelihood.

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  31. Mark P said on January 5, 2017 at 1:50 pm

    We always liked Schlotzky’s, but apparently our town isn’t big enough for a decent sandwich shop, although we have multiple Subways. So now Subway is where we go. I actually like it OK. It’s not great, but it is a decent sub.

    There’s one big reason Hillary lost that I haven’t heard yet, probably because it involves criticizing Republicans. We had dinner a couple of weeks ago with some neighbors. We know their politics, so we warned each other not to talk about it. Even so, it came up. They recognized that the Republicans will probably try to kill Medicare and Social Security (they hope not because they are only a couple of years from retirement), but they couldn’t vote for Hillary because she and Bill are serial killers. A trail of bodies follows them. So, the Republican operatives’ decades-long smear campaign against the Clintons has worked. People actually think the Clintons are murderers.

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  32. Sherri said on January 5, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    My MIL’s husband just told me the ACLU was a commie organization, then wouldn’t discuss it any further. But yes, the problem is I’m a smug elite liberal.

    (I’m also having to play bad guy as we make the tough decisions to stop him from constantly interrupting his dying wife who has difficulty talking. It would be one thing if he were interrupting to interpret her wishes, but he’s interrupting to interject his opinion, and he’s still in denial.)

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  33. brian stouder said on January 5, 2017 at 2:04 pm

    Beb – marvelous link, indeed!

    Sherri – wow. I guess I’d be reduced to simply saying “Oh, uh-huh” as one ridiculous remark after the next comes forward.

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  34. alex said on January 5, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    MarkP, how did you manage to suffer through a dinner with people that fucking stupid? I mean seriously.

    Tried a new chain deli that opened here recently, McAllister’s. It was meh. Was hoping to finally find a half-decent corned beef sandwich in this town but I didn’t find it there.

    Used to be able to get a fine corned beef sandwich in the cafeteria at the IU Student Union before they made a Taco Bell/Hardee’s shit sandwich food court out of the place.

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  35. Sherri said on January 5, 2017 at 2:14 pm

    Many of those who have lost jobs seek help at White Plains Baptist Church, where her husband is preacher. But not all who seek help are worthy of it, she said. The church has to be a good steward of its money, so there are criteria for assistance, and she asks whether people attend church regularly. African Americans who have voiced concerns over what Trump will do for the poor would have a different perspective if they tried harder to help themselves, she said.

    I’m trying to remember which gospel has the part about who is worthy of help.

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  36. Dorothy said on January 5, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    Jakash you want quick pasta? Look for a place called Piada. They serve Chipotle-style in a line where you pick the toppings on either salad or pasta. I really like it a lot. You can get salmon, calamari, meatball, steak, chicken, spicy chicken or sausage as your protein. Lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, cukes, peppers, artichokes and zucchini are the vegetable choices. I might have missed a couple.

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  37. Suzanne said on January 5, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    I know any number of people who believe the Clintons had people murdered. Some are well educated, too.
    But, generally, when I tell these same people that a friend told me that her friend’s husband, a guy who is in commercial real estate in NYC, told her that nobody in NYC would do business with Trump because he’s too bad a risk, they say, “Well, that’s just one person’s opinion.”

    Yes, the propaganda machine has done its job.

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  38. brian stouder said on January 5, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    Our new president-elect is supposed to have a real, live press conference pretty soon, and THAT should be interesting.

    I still say that the ’emoluments clause’ will be issue #1 or 2 (ie – divestiture); the tax-return thing will become a matter of public record when the impeachment proceedings begin

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  39. Scout said on January 5, 2017 at 2:47 pm

    Mark P @ 31: That would be the absolute last time I would socialize with those neighbors unless it was in a large group setting. I can be cordial to dumb neighbors, but I can’t willingly subject myself to that level of ignorance. If you can, you are more patient than I.

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  40. Sherri said on January 5, 2017 at 3:14 pm

    This is exactly the sort of thing the security guard at the National Gallery with whom I had a long conversation was worried about wit Trump and the Republicans:

    The Teanutters show every intention of imposing an extremely radical agenda. Trump is terrible, but he’s not the only problem.

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  41. nancy said on January 5, 2017 at 3:37 pm

    I am monitoring, but refuse to participate in, a FB discussion about Trump’s plan to overhaul the American intelligence community. One participant, whom I know but generally avoid for reasons that will become apparent in another few words, wonders about the outcry — do we really need 17 different intelligence agencies? Can’t these be “streamlined” for “cost savings,” etc. — and chalks it up to Liberal Hysteria. I wonder, if you held a gun to his head, if he could name any IA beyond the CIA and NSA. For the record, each service branch has its own IA, as does the DEA, Homeland Security, etc.

    I actually shut down Facebook when I saw this discussion taking shape, because I didn’t trust myself to participate. Spy agencies aren’t fucking Walmart, dude. You want specialists. You want compartmentalization. FFS.

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  42. brian stouder said on January 5, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    ffs*, indeed! *

    And another bit of United States Government business:

    I got summoned to jury duty in United States District Court.

    Next week I call them, and hopefully learn the thing has been settled – but we shall see

    (had to Google that, and then laughed)

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  43. Judybusy said on January 5, 2017 at 4:08 pm

    @ 41: And who greatly expanded the reach and proliferation of these agencies? The second Bush administration. But I am sure that that guy would blame it on Obama.

    In 2008, I voted for Obama in our caucus largely because I believed the anti-Clinton propaganda machine would gut any chance of her winning the election. I am really sorry I was right in this case.

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  44. brian stouder said on January 5, 2017 at 4:10 pm

    (forgot to say – that would make me a Federal Employee, at least for awhile – and any individual member of the House could whack my $40/day[!!] to $1, eh?)

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  45. Jakash said on January 5, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    I’ve neither seen nor heard of Piada, Dorothy, but it sounds swell. Alas, the nearest one to Chicago is in Carmel, Indiana, and the locations don’t seem to be highway pit-stop type spots, which would be what I’m looking for. But thanks, if we’re near one, I’d certainly give it a try. : )

    Same here, Judybusy. I was leery of Hillary’s chances going back to 2008, and, though I was more than happy to wholeheartedly support her this time, it kinda bummed me out that she was the heir apparent as 2016 rolled around, given the 24 years’ worth of largely bullshit baggage she had to contend with.

    FFS, Brian, you’ve never heard of FFS? You obviously don’t check out Twitter very often, FFS. ; )

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  46. brian stouder said on January 5, 2017 at 4:36 pm

    Nope. Did Facebook for awhile, some years ago – and clearly was ‘out-of-synch’ with the thinking behind it.

    Generally, if there’s people I haven’t seen or heard from in 20 years or more, why would I suddenly want to now?

    And indeed, the whole attraction of Twitter is lost upon me

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  47. susan said on January 5, 2017 at 5:19 pm

    Brian @46 – I agree about Faceplate. It has always seemed to me like junior-high girl mean gossipy nasty who-cares shit. And I have no use for doing twittering meself, but sometimes twitter threads are fun to read.

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  48. Sherri said on January 5, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    I started on Twitter to keep track of various writers I liked to read, as the vagaries of the news business shuffled them from place to place. Originally, I was following my favorite women’s basketball writers, as they were among the first out the door at newspapers, and many of my favorite science writers write at a variety of places. I mostly use it to follow people who will point me to interesting things.

    Since Twitter doesn’t seem to be a very smart company, I read it without any ads, using a third party app. I quit using th Twitter app when they started inserting not just ads, but tweets (not retweets) from people whom I didn’t follow, but whom people I followed followed. That was too annoying.

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  49. susan said on January 5, 2017 at 5:21 pm


    (stoopid spell czech thinks it knows what I want to say)

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  50. Julie Robinson said on January 5, 2017 at 6:27 pm

    As a person who doesn’t live where she grew up, I love Facebook for keeping in touch with my hometown and old friends. Even better, through Facebook our family learned we met a cousin we hadn’t known about–an aunt had a baby that she kept secret and adopted out. As our family explored this connection we also met more family members, and learned the really big family secret, that our great-great grandmother was black. And so we met a whole ‘nother side of the family!

    Then a classmate remembered his mother talking about the black connection, apparently a somewhat open secret two generations back. Another turned out to be married to a relative of the man my aunt eventually married, and produced a box of photos for my new cousin. Priceless.

    Yep, I get disgusted many times but have curated my feed enough that it’s mostly enlightening and entertaining.

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  51. Connie said on January 5, 2017 at 6:27 pm

    By the way, Go Butler!

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  52. Jolene said on January 5, 2017 at 7:25 pm

    I enjoy FB too. Have reconnected with a couple of old friends, keep in touch with faraway family members and have become “friends” with people I don’t really know based on interests–much like I wouldn’t say these connections are central to my existence, but they’re fun and, so far, harmless.

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  53. Jakash said on January 5, 2017 at 8:15 pm


    I don’t tweet either, just read those of a select few. In addition to the “people who will point me to interesting things,” as Sherry mentions, it’s an endless font of one-liners, many of which are hilarious, IMHO. As somebody who appreciates a “thread-winner” as well as the next guy, you’d enjoy lots of them, I’m sure. (Not that I’m suggesting you bother. As with most social media, it can also a be a colossal time-sink, of course.)

    Regarding such jokes, Eric Zorn of the Chicago Tribune has an online vote to determine which of the dozen or so witty tweets he’s noticed in a given week is the funniest, according to the minions of his who bother to vote. He rounded up the 30 that he thought were the funniest of the year here. Don’t need to be on Twitter to read them (or to vote in the weekly polls, for that matter, FWIW.)

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  54. Suzanne said on January 5, 2017 at 8:27 pm

    I love reading the Twitter feed during a ballgame (Super Bowl & the like) and any tv shows, especially live ones. I always watched Downton Abbey with the Twitter feed up. I admit to tweeting, too, and get a huge kick out of any tweet being retweeted. I like Facebook, too, to reconnect with people from college and high school. I get sucked into a few dumb Facebook discussions, but have learned to just let it go most of the time.

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  55. Deborah said on January 5, 2017 at 8:52 pm

    I’ve been thinking about this for a few days and it brings tears to my eyes every time I do. When I was in the waiting room while LB was in the OR there was a large extended Hispanic family across from me. It appeared to be an elderly gentleman who was probably the grandfather and if I had to guess it was his wife, the grandmother who was having surgery. There seemed to be sons and daughters in law or daughters and some little kids too. Then there was a man in his late 50s, well dressed, handsome, nicely groomed hair and beard, who was obviously profoundly autistic. The family treated him very gently, retrieving him if he got too close to others in the waiting room. At one point the autistic man went over to a young boy with his mother across the room, the kid was playing with an electronic device that every once in a while broke out into raucus jingles. The grandfather went over and apologized to the boy and his mother saying, “it’s ok he just likes the music”, then led the autistic man back to where the rest of the family was. It just made my day to see that. Here was this really close family who obviously cared a great deal for each other and they had this disabled relative that they took care of, for probably all of his life. All I could think about were all of the horrible things Trump has said about Hispanics. And here were these salt of the earth people just living their lives. It was humbling and uplifting to observe.

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  56. nancy said on January 5, 2017 at 8:54 pm

    Come on now, be fair, Deborah. He did shrug and say, “And some of them are good people.” These are obviously the ones he was talking about.

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  57. Judybusy said on January 5, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    Oh, Deborah, that is a wonderful story.

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