So, so done.

Great googly moogly, what a week. Illness, lots of work and here, at week’s end, my lovely daughter in the house, for band practice. She’s just staying the night, leaving in the a.m., but it’s nice to see her. We’re going to Ann Arbor this weekend to hear a brief bit of her original composition, which is on my calendar as “frog music.” Formal name: “The River in Our City, the River in Our Veins,” which the Facebook event page informs me is “processional puppetry.” Kate wrote 10 minutes of electronic music for the frog portion, which was supposed to play behind puppets depicting the lifespan of a frog, but not all the phases got made, so the piece got trimmed. I hope I get to see a tadpole puppet at the very least.

I’m looking forward to this.

The weather is supposed to cooperate, and IT FUCKING BETTER. We’re currently dodging a major snowstorm in northern Michigan, but enduring chill sideways rain that really sucks ass and I for one am so done with winter. The Tigers opening day is Friday, so all the happy baseball drunks will likely be enduring what’s known around here as “wintry mix.”

Fortunately, if you choose to stay in, there’s plenty to read. Shall we begin?

Mike Pence, gutted and filleted:

He began as a talk show host in 1994 in small-town Indiana, fulminating about the global warming “myth,” the perfidy of Washington, and the verities of an evangelical Christianity menaced by cosmopolites. Piety swiftly merged with pragmatism: ambitious for office, Pence learned what worked — an antichoice, antigay agenda served up with reckless rhetoric couched in a pose of rectitude. He informed his audience that Clarence Thomas was being “lynched,” and that “despite the hysteria from the political class and the media, smoking doesn’t kill.” A quarter-century later, Pence remains as small as his beginnings.

The flexibility of his conscience surfaced in his first race for Congress. He used campaign funds to pay for his mortgage, car, credit card, golf, and groceries. To smear his opponent, he sent a mailer depicting lines of cocaine; ran an ad portraying an Arab sheik; and spread a story that the Democrat was selling his farm to a nuclear waste facility. Only after losing, did Pence deploy an ostentatious show of guilt.

Only Richard North Patterson, who divides his time between Martha’s Vineyard and California (according to his Twitter bio) could call Indianapolis a small town, but we’ll give him that. Because otherwise, he’s dead-on.

A truly weird and dispiriting Columbia Journalism Review piece about a recent panel on “the new White House correspondents,” i.e., the alt-whatever freak show that Sean Spicer is making room for in the briefings:

(Gateway Pundit’s Lucian) Wintrich played the ringleader of his own one-man circus. He boasted of his big recent scoop, a supposed run-in with Malia Obama at a Manhattan club, where the underage former first daughter allegedly accosted him. “As a black belt, according to the American Taekwondo Association, I will never refuse a fight,” Wintrich said. The event moderator, Columbia Journalism School Professor Ari Goldman, pushed back that Wintrich’s culminating report, which included a picture of a woman’s shoulder, wasn’t matched by other news organizations.

“It was picked up by every major gossip site, thank you very much,” Wintrich said. “That picture of Malia Obama’s shoulder was shared over 100,000 times. That’s why I’m a good reporter. I will publish those Malia Obama shoulder pics. Whatever pics sort of enter into my peripheral, I will publish.”

Are you nauseous yet? No. This audio clip will take two minutes of your time — or you can read the transcript — and should do the trick: A couple of companies eager for that border-wall contract pitch what makes their wall plan great enough to be part of great-again America. I don’t want to spoil the punchline but what the hell, here you go:

Then there’s a Pennsylvania company which proposes a nuclear waste wall. Wall jumpers would encounter a 100-foot deep trench with the waste at the bottom.

I was screaming by that point. I need me this weekend, and I need it bad. I hope yours is lovely.

Posted at 8:33 pm in Current events |
 

111 responses to “So, so done.”

  1. Heather said on April 6, 2017 at 9:21 pm

    A nuclear waste wall. What could possibly go wrong?

  2. Danny said on April 6, 2017 at 9:37 pm

    I never imagined that we as a nation would go from talking about the “nuclear option” in a euphemistic sense to a literal sense so quickly.

  3. Danny said on April 6, 2017 at 9:38 pm

    And I am referencing the recent action in Syria.

  4. Judybusy said on April 6, 2017 at 9:42 pm

    What the fuck is wrong with people?!

    Ahem. I’ve had a lovely week, busy at work. Tonight the pup and I headed over to Grace House to cook. For the past few months, a co-worker’s been joining me, and it’s amazing how much livelier the dinners are with just the added person.

    On the way home, I stopped at a neighborhood liquor store to get a bottle of wine. They were also sampling rum. Oh. My. God. I guess I’ve had only crap or mediocre rum till now. It’s called Bumbu, from Barbados. The first scent is faintly banana, and it’s so smooth and carmel-y. If you like rum, try to track it down. I usually buy a bottle of gin to last the summer, but this year’s drink will be the mojito.

  5. Sherri said on April 6, 2017 at 10:18 pm

    Somebody told me today I needed to keep a positive mental attitude and I wanted to punch him.

    trump’s in charge of making decisions about Syria. Yeah, that’s really helping my positive mental attitude.

    The way you know that God doesn’t work the way right wing conservative Christians would have you think is that Mitch McConnell is still standing. He’s more cynical than a cartoon villain.

  6. beb said on April 6, 2017 at 10:20 pm

    The way things are going I’d make my good-byes now in case WWIII lands on us before morning. So long, and thanks for the fish…

  7. Deborah said on April 6, 2017 at 10:34 pm

    I’m very glad this week is almost over too. My sciatica has definitely turned a corner, it definitely felt better today, less than excruciating anyway. The last couple of days I had acquired something called foot drop, it’s when the herniated disk or whatever impinges on the pernial (spelling?) nerve that communicates with the muscles in your foot to do what you need to do when you walk. I can still walk but my left foot flops whenever I step down. It is very inelegant but it is improving too, thank god. It never got to the point that I was dragging my foot but I was worried. No more shoveling dirt or chucking heavy rocks for me for a long time, that weakened everything making the window washing the straw that broke the camels back so to speak.

  8. Joe K said on April 6, 2017 at 10:41 pm

    Weather really sucked in Flint today, but wasn’t bad when I got to Springfield Tennessee, waved at Basset when I went by Nashville.
    Pilot Joe

  9. Deborah said on April 6, 2017 at 10:53 pm

    And so it begins in Syria this evening. The photos of the dead children in the chemical attack yesterday or the day before was devastating. Whether this retaliation is a good thing, I have no idea. I guess we will find out soon enough. I expected we would get into a military skirmish with Trimp sooner or later, but I must say I didn’t expect it this soon.

  10. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 12:22 am

    Oops, I forgot to mention those meetings with my Russian handlers, I mean, contacts.

    Like I said, Jared is in over his head.

    https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/04/06/us/politics/jared-kushner-russians-security-clearance.html

  11. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 12:30 am

    Assad is terrible. All the hawks calling for regime change need to answer one question for me, though: how does this turn out better than Iraq?

    All the answers in Syria are terrible but one: opening our doors to refugees. That’s the one thing the chicken hawks are too afraid to do.

    Sorry, it’s been a bad week. I’ll take this out on some poor unsuspecting weights tomorrow.

  12. Suzanne said on April 7, 2017 at 7:01 am

    Deborah, I thought exactly the same thing. I didn’t expect war so soon.
    But then, I’ve read enough to know that authoritarians, once they gain control, move quickly. So we should not be surprised, I guess.

  13. alex said on April 7, 2017 at 7:28 am

    The Syrian tragedy drives home for me what a phony piece of shit Mike Pence really is. He tried to rescue his faltering bid for a second term as governor by demagoguing against Syrian refugees. For him, and for far too many, living his faith is all about preening and piousness and demonizing anyone else who isn’t similarly preoccupied. That’s what he means when he says he’s a Christian first, an American second and a Republican third. He brings discredit to all three things equally.

  14. basset said on April 7, 2017 at 8:21 am

    I’m right downtown, Joe, about a mile south of the big building that looks like Batman.

  15. basset said on April 7, 2017 at 8:24 am

    For those who haven’t seen it:

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/AT%26T_Building_(Nashville)

    Tasks for this weekend include organizing about 100 Flickr pics of the London trip… and going round the shelters with Mrs. B in the morning to look for a new kitteh, the house has been petless too long.

  16. brian stouder said on April 7, 2017 at 9:11 am

    basset – sounds like a great plan, indeed! Kitty cats are lots of fun, and pleasant companions, as they grow into being cats.

    That building is pretty cool; Fort Wayne has a mini-Empire State Building, and then some ugly boxes…but a new one is going up, which ought to be cool when it’s done

  17. coozledad said on April 7, 2017 at 9:27 am

    A. Old white trash likes to see shit blow up, and the media folks who thought Trump dragging a war widow out to whore her on national TV was “Presidential” will be jacking their dicks today. They still love what they loved in 2003, which is an energetic use of the poor for bullet sponges, and the notion that as members of the press they are close to a watershed moment for “the empire.”

    B. They’ll quit covering Trump’s Russian cracklicking, and they’ll burrow up in his ass until we leave another couple of divisions stranded in a country our illiterate policymakers and press don’t really give a flying fuck about, much less understand.

    C. David Gergen will be on your TV by this weekend saying “The American people love Trump. They really, really, LOVE him.”

    D. The Army will be so desperate for bodies in the next few years, they’ll take whatever Nazi prick shows up at the recruiters, even with a fucking jab still stuck in his arm.

    E. But that there “Hambilly Illegibly” were a important book.

  18. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 9:30 am

    Whew, that building is a doozy, Basset. The architect was definitely trying to make a statement of some kind.

  19. Charlie said on April 7, 2017 at 9:31 am

    Deborah, I have permanent foot drop and I wear a plastic ankle foot orthotic. It not like the old metal foot braces. It only weighs a few ounces and slides into my shoe. Mine is custom molded to my foot but you can get a basic one from Amazon. Mine makes my life a thousand times better.

  20. Joe K said on April 7, 2017 at 9:37 am

    Bassett,
    That’s right by the r2d2 building isn’t it?
    Pilot Joe

  21. Danny said on April 7, 2017 at 9:42 am

    Um, not that I don’t agree with some of your narrative, Derrick, but your favorite person in the whole world, Hillary, is also calling for military action: to ‘take out’ Assad’s airbases. Wonder how your post would have changed if the election had gone differently.

    http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/06/politics/hillary-clinton-syria-assad/

  22. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 9:50 am

    Charlie, thanks for the advice. I’ll look into that.

    For the heck of it I looked up the architectural firm that designed the Batman building. I looked at the photos of the people who work there and found it very typical. Of the 46 people listed under architecture 9 were women and of the 25 people listed under interiors 4 were men. There were very few people of color anywhere.

  23. coozledad said on April 7, 2017 at 9:54 am

    If the election had gone differently, we’d have taken in refugees. There would have been an escape valve. But as it is we have fake earnest little fundie cocksuckers splitting the hairs of charity and throwing grenades.

  24. Jerrie said on April 7, 2017 at 10:44 am

    I’m with Cooz on this one. President Hillary would have had allies in place, a fully functional State Dept and a Secretary of State who wouldn’t have greenlighted the gas attack in the first place.

  25. Icarus said on April 7, 2017 at 10:53 am

    We dodged that snowstorm too.

    There was a picture of a Syrian father who lost his twin children, god if that didn’t just kick me in the stomach! I’m thinking since I live in the actual city part of Chicago, the nukes should kill me AND my family. Otherwise I’d be sad if I lived and they didn’t and it isn’t fair for my 2.5 yr olds to grow up without parents.

    Look for Trump’s approval rating get a temporary increase in the next couple of days. Military action like bombing an airbase is an easy sound bit for his base to understand and get fired up about.

  26. coozledad said on April 7, 2017 at 10:59 am

    Same old same old shit. The New York times is taking Trump in their mouth down to his flaky orange balls and arching up so they can get their nose in his asshole at the same time. It’s a feat we haven’t see since Judith Miller. And Glen Thrush and Maggie Habermann are on board for the “humanization” segments.

    https://twitter.com/TasneemN

    We’ve already got the Trotskyist fuckbag to replace that tower of shit Hitchens, too. Glenn Greenwald. I’ve seen this shite movie already.

  27. coozledad said on April 7, 2017 at 11:03 am

    https://twitter.com/mattdpearce/status/850199460156104704

  28. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 11:26 am

    Blair Kamin, the architectural critic for the Chicago Tribune weighs in on Trimp’s wall proposals http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/ct-trump-border-wall-designs-kamin-met-0406-20170406-column.html

    I can’t imagine an architect that would have submitted a serious proposal, it would be a black mark in the eyes of the architectural community to have done so. The whole idea is preposterous. It will never be funded and it’s beyond ridiculous. I read that some architecture professor gave his students the assignment of designing such a wall, the guy was lambasted to hell and back for doing so.

  29. Bitter Scribe said on April 7, 2017 at 11:57 am

    I wish someone would slap that fatmouthed punk from Gateway Pundit. I am so sick of puppies like him insulting and slandering people whose achievements, abilities and service to journalism and the nation far outstrip theirs.

    Regarding the wall, I predict Trump will put up some ridiculous token—a few miles of chain-link fence, say, augmented by some drones—and call that a wall. And the morons who voted for him will accept it.

  30. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 12:36 pm

    If Hillary were president, I would be saying the same thing, that there are nothing but terrible answers in Syria. The Republicans howled about Obama’s inaction in Syria, but when he asked for authorization for air strikes, they all said no. They are gutless chicken hawks who didn’t want to take any responsibility. Now, trump has dropped a few missiles, and they’re all giddy. That he did so without their having to vote is even better; all those countries over there all look the same, right, so one AUMF for one ought to cover another, no problem. Iraq, Syria, who really knows the difference?

    I might not have agreed with a President Clinton’s decision in Syria, but at least I would be sure that she understood the complex issues over there. I would be assured that she was at least cognizant of the fact that there’s not a simple civil war going on, but a multi-lateral conflict along several dimensions. Does anyone have any faith that trump knows anything about Syria? After all, these same children whose deaths he’s so upset by now were so dangerous he had to disrupt the entire immigration system just a couple of months ago to keep them out. That was what passed for looking tough then, yesterday it was dropping missiles. What is tomorrow, and the day after that?

  31. coozledad said on April 7, 2017 at 12:46 pm

    Hillary isn’t Putin’s sex baby the way all fucking Republican “men” are. And the New York Times should be burned to the fucking ground. Lapdogs.

  32. basset said on April 7, 2017 at 1:04 pm

    Joe@20, it sure is. that building’s a bank office, I always thought it looked like a giant pistol bullet.

    Deborah@22, how would you correct that terrible injustice?

  33. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 1:30 pm

    Basset: hire more women and people of color.

    I’m serious. There is value to having a variety of viewpoints, experiences, and perspectives in the workplace. Hiring the “best” person, as we do it too often now, has too narrow a definition. It’s easier to take someone who is above a threshold level of capability and train them in technical aspects than it is to train diversity.

    But, as we see by your “terrible” injustice remark, too many men do not place any value on that, despite plenty of evidence showing how much it improves the effectiveness of companies.

  34. Scout said on April 7, 2017 at 1:50 pm

    I am so so so done with this week too. Yesterday was a double decker shit sandwich, starting with having Gorsuch the Plagiarist forced on us by the Nefarious Turtle and the GOP Destructionists, and ending with The Giant Orange Turdler dick waving at Syria for the purposes of distracting from Russia plus a poularity bump to his flailing presidency. And of course, the whole exercise does nothing to alleviate the suffering of the Syrians, because anything that actually does that would require being an actual empathetic human. Only 78 days in and I’m sickened and exhausted by this whole smeary mess and see nothing improving even if we can get rid of the Turdler, because then we’re stuck with Crazy Ghost. What alex @13 said: “The Syrian tragedy drives home for me what a phony piece of shit Mike Pence really is. He tried to rescue his faltering bid for a second term as governor by demagoguing against Syrian refugees. For him, and for far too many, living his faith is all about preening and piousness and demonizing anyone else who isn’t similarly preoccupied. That’s what he means when he says he’s a Christian first, an American second and a Republican third. He brings discredit to all three things equally.”

  35. Suzanne said on April 7, 2017 at 1:59 pm

    “It’s easier to take someone who is above a threshold level of capability and train them in technical aspects than it is to train diversity.” So true, but that would mean someone would have to actually value training and have some sort of coherent training program in place. No one bothers with that in the workplace any more. Training?!?! We don’t need no stinking training!!!
    It’s simply this: you are hired, now get to work. Knowing anything about what you are to accomplish and how your employer would like you to tackle the issues within their framework are left to you, the worker, to discover! It’s all Trump mentality. Bomb now; figure it out later. Ignore the chaos in between.

  36. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    You’re right, of course, Suzanne. Which is why we have to keep fighting for the value of diversity and treating workers better. The pernicious idea that the primary purpose of a company is to return value to shareholders is terrible, and must be challenged along all axes.

  37. Dave said on April 7, 2017 at 2:13 pm

    Basset, my son works only a couple of blocks away from that AT&T building, for Service Source and Service Source is plainly visible on the side of the building.

    He worked there before and they graciously hired him back, he having had enough of his Miami experiment.

    Alex, love what you said about Pence. I told an Ohio friend of mine, who has a son and daughter-in-law living in the Indy area, that I voted against Pence twice and was on the losing end both times. He replied, yes, that was exactly what his son and DIL said. Bah!

  38. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    Basset, architecture is an old man’s game, it has been that way for ages. There are a lot more women now than there used to be but it’s really, really hard for them to get to senior positions, and a lot of them leave the profession out of frustration. Interiors on the other hand is something they’re accepted into and can get recognition and can work their way up in that realm. It’s going to take a long time for things to change. People of color need to be encouraged to go into design fields, they’re quite under represented. People of Asian ethnicity are more represented. There are quite a few famous Asian architects but only a few Black ones like David Adjaye who designed the new African American museum in DC. He’s African British.

  39. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 2:34 pm

    A friend of the family worked as a draftsman for the firm who did the Batman building. I mostly remember hearing from his mother how many hours he was working, she hardly ever saw him (and he was close to his mom.) My dad worked for AT&T/South Central Bell/BellSouth his entire career, and in Nashville for a while, but never in the Batman building.

  40. Danny said on April 7, 2017 at 2:37 pm

    Sherri, I agree with you that there are nothing but terrible answers in Syria. And this misinformed strike runs very contra to Trump’s supposed platform of military isolationism. But I am not sure Hillary would have had any military options in which she could have handled this better. Taking time to form a broad coalition tends to mean that planes and other materiel get moved and hidden before they can get destroyed. Assad probably would have hidden all of this in civilian population centers.

    Hey, on another topic akin to diversity in the workplace, I saw a story regarding gender pay equity that said Elizabeth Warren’s female staffers are making $0.71 for every $1.00 her male staffers make. I would not expect this of her and I wonder if the story is true.

  41. Danny said on April 7, 2017 at 2:42 pm

    Another thing that really rubbed me the wrong way last night while we were watching the news is that all the news organizations had to wait quite some time for a video tape of Trump’s news conference from Mar-a-Lago. Given the seriousness of the situation, he needs to get a clue and live feed … and should probably be conducting his business from either Washington or Camp David and not from Camp Caddy-Shack.

  42. Julie Robinson said on April 7, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    Suzanne, I think you’re right about no training. When I started my current job, I had about 45 minutes with the prior person and nothing in writing. Now as I prep for retirement, I’ve spent the last six weeks producing a binder that covers every possible circumstance. Of course, I’m OCD, but I’d hate for the next person to stumble around that way I had to.

    Anticipating retirement along with today’s sun, finally, even though it’s cold, has me too darn happy to even think about the rest of the crap happening.

    And if architecture is an old man’s game, the Batman building means somebody has a big case of arrested development.

  43. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    Hillary would not have any better military options. There are no good military options. All I said was, at least I would know that she would understand better than trump what the situation was, even when (when!) I disagreed with her. Would she have tried military options? She would have wanted to. Would she have done so without getting authorization from Congress? My guess is, probably. I would have disagreed with both decisions, vigorously. I do not believe there is anything we can do militarily to improve the situation in Syria. I will admit my understanding is limited, and I could be completely wrong. I think our best solution is to rescue as many people as we can. I don’t know how to intervene in a multilateral civil war that involves many groups fighting for many different reasons, including some proxy wars.

    On a different, much happier, more hopeful note, here’s a story about a 94 year old physicist still doing interesting work, trying to improve the earlier work he did on the lithium-ion battery: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/07/opinion/sunday/to-be-a-genius-think-like-a-94-year-old.html

  44. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 3:05 pm

    Just an interesting nugget that ages both me and the friend who worked on the Batman building: he was the person who taught me how a slide rule worked, when he was in high school and I was in elementary school.

  45. Hattie said on April 7, 2017 at 3:14 pm

    Just got to keep exposing these people for what they are and fighting them at every turn with whatever we’ve got.

  46. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 3:31 pm

    Oh yeah, when you work at an architecture firm you are expected to work long, long hours like the architects do. Architects are trained in school to work their asses off and they do. My husband never quits. It’s his life.

  47. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 3:39 pm

    This was also before drafting had been completely computerized, when pencil on paper and a t-square, triangle, and a distinctive lettering style were still the norm. I took drafting classes in both high school and college, but I was never any good at it.

  48. coozledad said on April 7, 2017 at 3:49 pm

    The problem with counterfactuals is they are counterfactual. There are reasons historians don’t use them.

    Here are the facts. Trump can’t take a shit without approval from Putin, and John McCain and Lindsey Graham are traitors to the fucking bone. There isn’t a Republican alive who wouldn’t sell his daughter for a whore, and there aren’t many dead ones who wouldn’t have boned Hitler. We see that in the current administration. Not just hobby Nazis, but professional race-baiting goose-stepping blackshirt wearing human slime.

    I don’t know which god they asscrawl to, but it ought to drown in fire.

  49. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 3:50 pm

    This is a thoughtful piece from a Syrian-American, written several months ago. It is a perspective worth reading.

    https://theringer.com/syria-barack-obama-legacy-853644abdd1b

  50. coozledad said on April 7, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    Idiot boy.
    https://twitter.com/TheWrap/status/850424957007872000

    Boogerpicker of the boogerpickers on the short bus. Ancillary frathouse hump pillow.

    Pussy-pinching reptilian. Terrycloth-bound sweaty pink dickflesh of a dumbass’s dumbass. Republican.

  51. nancy said on April 7, 2017 at 4:25 pm

    I was going to rise to Maggie Haberman and the NYT’s defense earlier; despite Coozledad’s criticism, I think she’s done a pretty good job giving Trump just enough rope to hang himself.

    Then I listened to the Daily podcast when I was making lunch, and they exited the segment about the Syria bombing by underlaying Trump’s awful speech with some sort of sad cello thing. Not exactly Barber’s Adagio, but in the same vein, mood-wise. This is Strike two for the Daily. Strike one was the host’s strangled tears when interviewing a coal miner.

  52. Heather said on April 7, 2017 at 4:25 pm

    I went and read that Taran Killiam interview and, in the interest of not promoting fake news, he says T struggled in the table read, not that he struggled to read. I mean, maybe T can’t read (although he manages to tweet so obviously he can read a little), but that’s not what was said in the interview.

  53. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 4:33 pm

    trump dictates his tweets.

    Samantha Bee has had an ongoing bit about trump’s inability to read.

    Maggie Haberman is very much part of my love-hate relationship with the NYTimes; does some really fine work, then does stuff that makes me want to throw my iPad. She’s just got too much of the “well, if both sides hate me, I must be doing something right” mentality for me. I hate that.

  54. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 4:38 pm

    Did you know bald eagles like landfills?

    http://www.seattleweekly.com/news/your-best-chance-for-bald-eagles-in-puget-sound-try-the-landfill/

  55. MichaelG said on April 7, 2017 at 4:44 pm

    In the area where I worked at the State of California we had plenty of female architects and engineers and project directors. And in supervisory positions as well. For example, our principal architect was a Japanese woman. We had lots of Asians, Hispanics and Islamics (mostly Iranian). But there were no African-Americans. This was not because of some discrimination on the part of our agency.

    There simply are very few African-Americans in this field. For a solution we have to look to education and recruit people early in school. It has to start with the young ones. We have to look at the big problem of racism in general and not simply address it by attempting to attract African-American architects and engineers. While good to do, it is only a start.

    I’m feeling pretty OK, but the problems with my leg are starting to get pretty serious. I had to quit chemo because my blood chemistry was getting all screwed up. Now I’m starting radiation next week. Hope it helps.

  56. brian stouder said on April 7, 2017 at 4:56 pm

    MichaelG – great to hear from you! I’m feeling more and more ‘mortal’ every day.

    I used to think that the best way to go (as if we had any vote in the matter!) would be all-at-once…but then 2 months ago my brother-in-law (who was a year younger than me) keeled-over with a heart attack – boom/gone.

    The upheaval and pain that that unleashed on his family (immediate and extended) took the shine right off of that idea.

    Aside from all that – Sherri – Fort Wayne has an amazingly active natural preserve right next to a gigantic landfill, and rare is the time you ever go past it, and miss seeing eagles or herons or heaven-knows what else, circling or diving or hangin’ out and chillin’

  57. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 4:59 pm

    Hope the radiation helps, MichaelG.

    I’ve been hearing the pipeline argument all my life. Filling the pipeline doesn’t solve the problem, and even if it did, companies could do something about that if it mattered to them.

    http://www.curbed.com/2017/2/22/14677844/architecture-diversity-inclusion-race

    Really, this stuff isn’t hard to figure out. We don’t have to throw up our hands and say it can’t be solved. It isn’t being solved because it’s not considered an important enough problem to solve.

    I listen to managers in tech complain about not being able to find people all the time, and I give them no sympathy, because I ask them what they’re doing and it’s the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Companies would rather fight over the same fish in the pool they think provides a sure answer than look anywhere else, even though anytime they actually try to evaluate the efficacy of their hiring processes, they find out that they are shit.

  58. Jolene said on April 7, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    Trump writes most of his own tweets. Who else would be insane enough to send out his ungrammatical, misspelled insults, lies, and complaints?

    During the campaign, he was using an Android phone, and whatever staff member was sending tweets on his behalf was using an iPhone. You could see clearly that the more outrageous tweets came from the Android, whereas the more anodyne versions came from the iPhone.

    Am not sure that situation still exists; I think I saw, in passing, that Trump now has an iPhone too. But it’s a safe bet that he is tweeting much, if not all, of what appears on the @realDonaldTrump account.

  59. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    Michael G, hoping for the best with radiation. Of course you’re right, we need to start encouraging early in all areas. I will say the architecture firm I worked for before I retired had a couple of mentoring programs for minority elementary kids and another for high school kids where they’d bring them in and work with them, if nothing else it was at least exposure, but it must have been discouraging for them to look around and see only a couple of faces among the staff that looked like them.

  60. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 5:52 pm

    Sherri, that link at #49 was excellent, a very interesting perspective.

  61. basset said on April 7, 2017 at 6:19 pm

    But think about it, Sherri… that building was designed by the wrong people and still it stands, a monument to oppression and injustice. What can be done? What should be done?

    Don’t say reparations, though, they’ll just add the cost to our phone bills.

  62. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 6:48 pm

    I don’t give a fuck about the building, basset. Didn’t when it was built, don’t know.

  63. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 6:58 pm

    Basset, the building is in the category of evaluative oblivion, like a lot of “architecture” today.

  64. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    This is how I’ve felt all week with my sciatica etc https://www.instagram.com/p/BSbYv8ujYQR/

  65. basset said on April 7, 2017 at 7:56 pm

    Category of what was that again?

  66. basset said on April 7, 2017 at 8:00 pm

    Sherri, you cared enough about it to see if the design team met your standards fir diversity… that counts for something. I thought for a minute there that maybe you were gonna go chain yourself across the doors in protest.

  67. alex said on April 7, 2017 at 8:09 pm

    Goddamned funny thing just happened. I was talking about Syria while driving when suddenly my iPhone chimed in on my Bluetooth. It was Siri asking me what I wanted.

    Wished I’d had the presence of mind to answer “world peace” and see what she’d say to that. Have to try it again on the way home.

  68. Deborah said on April 7, 2017 at 9:53 pm

    Basset, evaluative oblivion. Which means it’s not worth thinking about. A waste of time giving it any thought. Way more stuff in the world to consider. I’ve already given it way too much attention then it deserves.

  69. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 9:58 pm

    Basset, the design team of one building built over 25 years ago is not the issue, and I think you can grasp that. The fact that today, in 2017, diversity is still not valued enough to do something about is the issue.

  70. MichaelG said on April 7, 2017 at 10:05 pm

    Sherri, I wasn’t making a pipeline argument, although the pipeline doesn’t runneth over. What I said was “We have to look at the big problem of racism in general”. The solution to finding people to fill specific types of jobs is bound up in the general problem of attacking racism.

  71. Sherri said on April 7, 2017 at 11:41 pm

    That is an example of what my husband calls making something an insoluble problem. We don’t have to deal with racism overall to embarrass companies into doing the right thing. There will always be racism, but we can speak out about it and the price of it to all of us.

    We elected a racist, misogynistic president. If we’re not going to boldly stand up and say that shit is unacceptable now, when will we?

  72. Sherri said on April 8, 2017 at 2:22 am

    http://www.seattletimes.com/business/us-regulators-accuse-google-of-underpaying-female-workers/

  73. alex said on April 8, 2017 at 9:00 am

    Mugshot of the month…

    The story itself wouldn’t have warranted a place in our local news, but that picture is certainly some low-dangling clickbait. I’m kind of horrified at myself for checking it out. Probably gonna skip breakfast.

  74. coozledad said on April 8, 2017 at 10:34 am

    alex: The NYT and WAPO need to interview that man, stat. He just oozes economic insecurity.

  75. Deborah said on April 8, 2017 at 11:10 am

    Have any of you folks here ever used a TENS unit for pain? It’s a thing that sends electrical pulses to painful areas. I’m thinking about trying it, not expensive, available on Amazon etc. If anyone has had success with something like that please let me know. Obviously I’m asking because of my sciatica bout. So far I’ve tried heat and cold and Advil type pills (I’ve tried all the brands and Advil seems to work best for me). I haven’t been to the Dr yet because I’m pretty sure I know what’s going on from what I’ve read online, I just need to wait this out and try to control the worst of the pain.

  76. basset said on April 8, 2017 at 11:12 am

    Sherri, I realize that the design team is not the main issue here – I just thought it was interesting that we mentioned a strange-looking building and your reaction was to run to the architects’ site and check it for political correctness.

    Meanwhile… not being an architect, I’m not qualified to say whether it’s an ugly building or not. As a layman, though, I like it.

  77. beb said on April 8, 2017 at 11:55 am

    Sherri @44. The only time I got spanked in school was in drafting class (mandatory for boys). I wasn’t very good at it. I don’t remember why I got spanked but as class was leaving the teacher came up and smacked me on the butt with a paddle. Corporal punishment in school kind of dates me, too. Ah, the slide rule… The way math was done before computers.

  78. Sherri said on April 8, 2017 at 12:15 pm

    Go back and check the thread, basset. I didn’t check the design team.

  79. beb said on April 8, 2017 at 12:15 pm

    A lot of people voted for Trump because they wanted to shake up things in Washington but what we’re seeing in the Middle-east is the same-old same-old. Blowing people up does not advance democracy, peace or freedom. The biggest problem there is the battle between Sunni and Shia, religious factions of Islam. It’s kind of like the Catholic v. Protestant battles in Europe centuries earlier. Or the black/white battles in America. The Shia are the white supremacists while the Sunni are the more populous oppressed Blacks. We haven’t solved our black=white problem and I doubt the middle-east will solve their problem anytime soon. That and there are no natural boundaries between Syria, Iraq, Iran or Turkey. We gave weapons to Shia Assad’s enemies (Sunni) and should not have been surprised that the Sunnis went rogue and tried to set up their own country (ISIS). The best fighters against ISIS have been the Kurds who want to carve out their own country out of Iraq (and party of Turkey). The Iraqi forces flee before ISIS because they’re also Sunni and hate their taskmasters in Baghdad because those are Shia. Probably the only way to create peace in the region would be to balkanize the area into tribal and religious cohorts. Of course that leaves most of the oil to the Kurds and neither the Shia or the Sunni are going to allow that.
    Seriously the best policy for the US is to pull completely out of Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan and tell God sort it out.

  80. beb said on April 8, 2017 at 12:18 pm

    If Trump dictates his tweets then they wouldn’t be filled with typoes and inappropriately capitalized words. The clearest sign that Trump is illiterate is his tweets.

  81. Deborah said on April 8, 2017 at 12:35 pm

    Basset, I’m the one who went to the architects website to see the other work they have done. While at the site I noticed that it showed photos of the folks who worked there. I looked at the photos to see if I knew anyone. The design profession is pretty tight and you get to know a lot of the same people etc. for instance Peter and I have some people in common that we’ve worked with over the years. Anyway while I looked at the array of photos on the Batman building’s website it reminded me of almost every other architecture firm, that they have few women architects but lots of women in interiors and I think that’s too bad.

  82. Deborah said on April 8, 2017 at 12:41 pm

    And another thing Basset, if you like the building that’s just fine. Everyone has their own area’s of knowledge. For instance, you know a hell of a lot more about cars than I do and you would probably think a car I would choose to purchase to be a waste of money, or whatever. That’s what makes the world go round.

  83. Sherri said on April 8, 2017 at 12:46 pm

    Brian Williams is the worst. They should have kept him off the air.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/the-media-loved-trumps-show-of-military-might-are-we-really-doing-this-again/2017/04/07/01348256-1ba2-11e7-9887-1a5314b56a08_story.html

  84. basset said on April 8, 2017 at 12:52 pm

    OK, it’s the current firm then. Even worse, I would suppose.

  85. Sherri said on April 8, 2017 at 1:11 pm

    Basset, I don’t know what you think I’m arguing, nor do I understand your habit of always retreating into poor me, I’m a white male comments whenever the subject comes up.

  86. Jolene said on April 8, 2017 at 1:14 pm

    Deborah, a post describing certain kinds of stretches that are supposed to alleviate sciatica appeared in my FB newsfeed. No idea whether the advice is any good, but it looks credible. Probably no harm in checking it out.

  87. basset said on April 8, 2017 at 3:13 pm

    I guess being a lifelong member of the oppressor class will do that to ya.

    On a different topic, no new cat for us this weekend – kitten season has not hit our local rescues yet.

  88. Sherri said on April 8, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    I’ve used a TENS unit with some success. I find it takes a lot of experimentation to find a good placement of the electrodes and a good program of pulses.

    Physical therapy might be a good idea.

  89. Deborah said on April 8, 2017 at 3:30 pm

    Jolene, thanks for that exercise link. I’ve been doing a couple of them already, I got together with a friend the other night for dinner and unknown to me she told me that she had a bad bout of sciatica that lasted for a year (A YEAR!). She’s completely healed now and she told me she would send me an email with some exercises I could do, she described some of them that night but I haven’t yet got the email, so it was great to see your link, especially the videos. I had googled exercises for sciatica but that one hadn’t shown up.

    Thanks Sherri, I haven’t ordered the TENS unit yet, still doing some research about which one, there are a bunch of them and they seem to vary a lot. The biggest issue seems to be finding one that can use rechargeable batteries because they apparently go through them quickly if you use the unit a max strength.

  90. Sherri said on April 8, 2017 at 4:06 pm

    The Tampa Bay Times has done a big work on why cops shoot: http://tampabay.com/projects/2017/investigations/florida-police-shootings/

  91. coozledad said on April 8, 2017 at 4:24 pm

    TENS units work pretty well. You might even want to try an acupuncturist for awhile. They work on similar signal blocking and endorphin stimulation principles. If you look at some of the neural maps available on google, you might, like me, be startled at the dense grouping of neural fibres in the gluteus medius/maximus area.

    Humans are like chickens: we’ve virtually got a second brainload worth of nerve tissue in our ass. For some old white dudes, it’s all they have left.

  92. Deborah said on April 8, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    “For some old white dudes, it’s all they have left.” Good one.

  93. LAMary said on April 8, 2017 at 7:47 pm

    I had my first bout of sciatica when I was pregnant with my second son. Since then I’ll have occasional visits from the sciatica demon, frequently for no apparent reason. I get the left foot drop too, but it goes away. The worst was when my kids were little and I couldn’t pick them up without having a lot of pain. Getting a 25 pound kid out of a car seat in the middle of the back seat was really rotten.

  94. coozledad said on April 8, 2017 at 9:34 pm

    The Red badge of privilege.
    Poltroon.
    A Sell too Short.
    The things they carried in their briefcases.
    If I die in a combat zone, send this coat back to Lord and Taylor.

    https://twitter.com/Carter_PE/status/850747234362826756

  95. Heather said on April 8, 2017 at 11:32 pm

    Sorry to hear about your ongoing sciactica, Deborah. Mine flares up occasionally ever since a major episode about ten years ago, but it’s never been too bad. I’m sure you know this but working on your core muscles can help ease the strain on your back muscles, which can exacerbate sciactica. One thing my chiropractor suggested is get in table position and extend the left arm/right leg for 5 seconds or so and then alternate, 3 sets of 10 every day.

  96. brian stouder said on April 9, 2017 at 12:05 am

    A Puke Lisps Now

    The Longest Day-trader

    Band of Koch Brothers

  97. Deborah said on April 9, 2017 at 12:17 am

    Heather, what is table position?

    LA Mary, ouch, can’t imagine picking up a 25 lb kid while having this.

    Coozledad, love the #jaredatwar captions.

  98. David C. said on April 9, 2017 at 7:22 am

    Deborah, get a good diagnosis before you do anything. There are at least three causes of sciatica that I know of and each has a different treatment. I had a bout with sciatica starting just about a year ago. I spent a month doing exercises for piriformis syndrome. I usually got quick relief from those but this time it didn’t work. I went to my GP and he did the tests (no imaging necessary and it isn’t useful anyway) and determined I had SI joint dysfunction. As he explained it to me, the hip and lower spine are connected by strong ligaments that allow very little movement. The sides of the two bones have facets so when you stand they rest on each other and support the weight of your upper body. Sometimes the ligaments get stretched and the facets slip by each other and lock. I went to physical therapy and they did their own evaluation and decided my pain was due to a herniated disc and started treating for that. After two treatments I couldn’t stand, walk, sit down, or lie down without terrible pain. I had to go on a course of prednisone (I’m allergic to all NSAIDS, so prednisone is the only anti-inflammatory I can use) to calm everything down. I then went to another PT who followed the doctor’s orders and did a manipulation that popped the joint back into place. I got just about immediate relief from that and then started exercises to strengthen my core and prevent it. So long story short, doing the wrong thing can be worse than doing nothing.

  99. Deborah said on April 9, 2017 at 7:44 am

    Wow, thanks David C, I hadn’t heard of SI joint dysfunction. sounds like I do need to go to my Dr. I’ve been avoiding it because everything I’ve read about sciatica is that it just takes time and there’s really nothing you can do except try to control pain. If it turns out to be something that can be dealt with quickly, hallelujah!

  100. David C. said on April 9, 2017 at 8:29 am

    It always got better with a bit of time for me too, Deborah. This last time it didn’t work out that way. In most cases, Voltaire was right when he said: “The art of medicine consists in amusing the patient while nature cures the disease”. But I was to the point where I couldn’t work because of the pain. I felt I had to see the doctor. Fortunately, it worked out for me once I found the right PT. I hope it works for you, too.

  101. nancy said on April 9, 2017 at 10:27 am

    …the hip and lower spine are connected by strong ligaments that allow very little movement.

    I guess this explains why it’s so difficult to twerk.

  102. Sherri said on April 9, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    I’ve had SI joint problems, though I don’t get sciatica, just a pain deep in the hip, I’ve found, that in addition to a lot of core work, the thing that helps me prevent a recurrence is to keep my hamstrings stretched.

  103. Sherri said on April 9, 2017 at 1:17 pm

    Since who doesn’t enjoy a review that trashes an expensive restaurant: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2017/apr/09/le-cinq-paris-restaurant-review-jay-rayner

  104. Deborah said on April 9, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    Sherri, that restaurant review was hysterical.

    My favorite line: “The dining room, deep in the hotel, is a broad space of high ceilings and coving, with thick carpets to muffle the screams. It is decorated in various shades of taupe, biscuit and fuck you.” and there are plenty more good ones.

  105. Jerry said on April 9, 2017 at 3:49 pm

    Sherri, I’d just finished laughing at that then I read your comment. Rayner can be a joy to read sometimes – and he doesn’t just slag off restaurants. He seems delighted to find a good one.

  106. MichaelG said on April 9, 2017 at 4:39 pm

    I had an encounter with sciatica once. It was 10-12 years ago. Same thing. Hellacious pain down right leg. After a couple of days I went to the doc and was referred to some kind of specialist. I forget what he was. First question he asked me was “Where do you carry your wallet?”. Of course the answer was right rear pocket. He nodded sagely, prescribed a muscle relaxant and told me to carry my wallet elsewhere. I took the pills for a couple of days and immediately got a super thin wallet, dumped most of the junk I had been carrying and stuck the wallet in my shirt pocket where it remains to this day. The pain was gone in a few days and has never returned. I turned out that my problem had been caused by sitting with my right butt cheek sitting high on that fat wallet. I removed the cause and the problem went away.

  107. Heather said on April 9, 2017 at 5:05 pm

    Sorry Deborah–yoga talk. Table position is just down on your hands and knees.

  108. Deborah said on April 9, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    Michael G, I had read that on-line that a fat wallet in your back pocket can cause sciatica, funny to hear your story. I bought a TENS unit today at CVS, it’s distributed here in the Chicago area and I can get replacement pads easily etc. It’s super simple, I didn’t want to get one that had lots of gizmos. Holy cow did it feel good when I used it, the best money I’ve ever spent, and not a lot of $ either. I’m calling my Dr tomorrow, hopefully I can get in soon and get this figured out. And I’ll quit being obsessed and shut up about it.

  109. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on April 9, 2017 at 5:26 pm

    MichaelG, count me as another miracle wallet cure on the sciatica circuit.

  110. Sherri said on April 9, 2017 at 6:12 pm

    Whoever recommended sous vide (David C?), thank you! I got the Joule, and I’m in love. I haven’t even done steak yet! Chicken breasts are incredible. I’ve also making something similar to the Starbucks sous vide egg bites, which are more or less crust less quiches, only much more tender and creamier. I’m looking forward to steak and salmon. I’m pretty good at cooking salmon on the grill, but being able to reliably get the right doneness without having to hover sounds marvelous.

    Also can’t wait for salmon season to start. One of the compensations for living through the dark winters here is wild Pacific salmon.

  111. David C. said on April 9, 2017 at 8:16 pm

    Remember to do a reverse sear on a real hot grill or griddle pan for your steak. Just thirty seconds a side and it’s perfect. I use mine a lot for nice thick stuffed pork chops. It’s the only way I’ve found to cook them perfectly to medium rare without drying them out.

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