Some words about birds.

I was thinking I should change my social media profile pix, or avi, as the kids call them. I was further thinking it should betray a hint of wit. Maybe a crying eagle superimposed over a flag, I mused, and googled the very same.

Oh, you find so much:

I had to look up what happened June 28, 2012. Anyone? No Googling! OK, I’ll tell you: It was the day the SCOTUS decision affirming the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act was handed down. And the Constitution burst into flames, the Statue of Liberty fell apart and everyone lost their grammar. “The day when” — yikes.

Better to go with a classic, maybe?

No flag, but simple, fierce, screaming — this may be my eagle. What could it be saying? Knowing eagles, it could be anything from get me a dead salmon to pick apart to another fucking eagle cam? I told you never again, Bob.

But I looked some more, and I think this is my eagle alter-ego. (Alter-eagle?)

That eagle’s going to a Ted Nugent concert, you just know it.

I haven’t changed my pic yet. But speaking of birds…

Man, this guy:

This may or may not be Cooze’s congressman; if so, I wonder if his inbox has started to coruscate with the towering obscenity of Cooze’s scorn, but on the other hand, no, because the world has turned against this soulless skinflint, who begrudges something like $37 worth of parts and labor to make it easier for baby ducks — baby fucking ducks, people — to get into the Capitol’s reflecting pool. I encourage you to click and read the replies, because they are poetry:

And many are better than that.

Ducklings. DUCKLINGS. Who in the world hates ducklings? I ask you.

Wednesday is behind us. Yee-haw.

Posted at 8:48 pm in Current events |
 

98 responses to “Some words about birds.”

  1. Sherri said on May 18, 2017 at 12:08 am

    Ryan is kind of a fuck-up who has failed ever upward in government.

    Ana Marie Cox doesn’t think much of Paul Ryan, Man of Seriousiousity.

  2. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on May 18, 2017 at 12:17 am

    You should read this through to the end, and I have bad news for Chris Arnade: you never stop feeling like a kind of copout after you make that call. But you still have to do it. This is a city 2 hours south of here, but very very similar to where I’m at. I’ve spent time there, and he’s got a part of the place described all too well.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/may/17/drugs-opiod-addiction-epidemic-portsmouth-ohio

  3. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on May 18, 2017 at 12:22 am

    The adjoining story is much closer to my location, geographically and functionally, and as for foster programs, Licking County is over 400 kids in care right now. It’s a precise picture of a shattering situation.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/may/17/ohio-drugs-child-protection-workers

  4. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on May 18, 2017 at 12:50 am

    Connie, thanks for the Licking County library story, which I tweeted and promptly gave credit for . . . to Sherri.

    Sorry!

  5. basset said on May 18, 2017 at 6:02 am

    Cat update: meeting the wife of a cousin of a guy who works for a friend tonight to pick up a nine-week-old gray tabby kitten. Or at least I think that’s the relationship, have to be an anthropologist to keep this stuff straight. With a new kitty here and psycho cat reportedly happy in a new forever home we may finally have this situation stabilized.

  6. Kristen said on May 18, 2017 at 6:18 am

    You weren’t kidding the Mark Walker duck replies were funny. My favorite (so far): “If it looks like an asshole, and tweets like an asshole, it must be a republican congressman.”

  7. Deborah said on May 18, 2017 at 6:36 am

    Jeff, one of the guys who built our cabin is from Portsmouth, OH. He got out a while ago, went to the U of Cincinnati, studied architecture and then moved to Taos, NM. He moved his brother and parents out to Taos to live with him. He told us lots of stories about Portsmouth.

  8. Suzanne said on May 18, 2017 at 7:41 am

    We really are now led by bad comedy actors, I think. I saw a tweet yesterday in which the author mentioned going for a haircut and while she was there, a couple more Trump scandals happened.
    This latest one is amazing with Mr McCarthy saying Trump is being paid by Russia “I swear to God” and Ryan telling him to keep that info there in the room where it was happening. Then, the typical denials (Never said that) followed by the revelation that there is audio (Oh crap), then the tried & true “Uh. [chuckle chuckle] It’s just a joke!”

  9. coozledad said on May 18, 2017 at 7:55 am

    Walker’s my congressman. Pretty much representative of the district they gerrymandered out for Phil “Baby” Berger Jr. Junior. Jr., but he couldn’t outfascist Walker. Walker’s a naturally oleagenous Denny Hastert manque (youth minister at a big box church), and as smug a lying pederast as you’ll ever meet.

    His god tried to kill him yesterday, but the bolt hit Thom Tillis instead. Not so much out of bad aim as insufficient direction: he must have told it to “Flatten that hateful pie faced ape from Carolina.”

    Walker’s a lot like Ryan. A full on antichrist; poor-shamer, lickspittle, unabashed liar, a victim of the severest moral disfigurement. The good old boy network around here sees that kind of ass and wants to bury their face in it- he’s the utter wrong they aspire to.

    https://theestablishment.co/poor-people-deserve-to-taste-something-other-than-shame-90eb3aceabf9

  10. Andrea said on May 18, 2017 at 8:09 am

    Jeff, we see it here in Illinois too. Statewide our intact family services census is up nearly 20% over contracted capacity and there’s still two months left in the fiscal year. In southern Illinois, that number is 40%. Of course, the lack of a state budget isn’t helping any, as lots of services that would help keep families away from protective services are failing due to lack of payment.

  11. Kirk said on May 18, 2017 at 8:12 am

    What? You think it has to be “the day that”?

    • nancy said on May 18, 2017 at 8:42 am

      That’s what my ear tells me. Although, when you think of it, I guess I hear “the day that it happened, I was wearing a blue dress” and don’t wince.

      I’m more bugged by The Capitalization Of Every Word.

  12. Andrea said on May 18, 2017 at 8:15 am

    Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. Here’s hoping every woman he meets googles him.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/05/18/shame-shame-n-h-lawmaker-resigns-after-outcry-over-his-woman-hating-reddit-forum/?hpid=hp_hp-morning-mix_mm-reddit%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.cf4e2bea60d6

  13. Kirk said on May 18, 2017 at 8:37 am

    I get it. Just “the day.” Too early in the morning to be considering such matters.

    While I was taking a shower, I decided “the day when” was equivalent to “the reason why,” and that does bug me.

    • nancy said on May 18, 2017 at 8:43 am

      And you’re right. Just “the day.” The day the music died, etc.

  14. nancy said on May 18, 2017 at 8:39 am

    Why am I so bugged by Chris Arnade? Let me count the reasons:

    1) His roving-reporter gig is as shallow as any parachute journalism, even if he’s in a van. Pop in, take some pictures of blighted houses, say “this is why Trump won,” leave.

    2) His implicit shaming of better reporters who have been doing this stuff for years. Yes, years. Some with parachutes, some without. I did a project in northern Michigan in 2015 that had more and better reporting than this. (To be sure, I had a partner. And a photographer. And data prepared by my colleagues.) Just because you weren’t reading it, Chris, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

    3) That other fatuous twerps like Rod Dreher hold him up as some sort of seer. Dreher also calls him a liberal, which I’m not getting from his work.

    4) Portsmouth? PORTSMOUTH? Did NOBODY read “Dreamland?” Sam Quinones OWNS the Portsmouth story. Fuck off, Chris.

    There’s more. I’ll think of it after some more coffee.

  15. alex said on May 18, 2017 at 8:52 am

    Discovered a stowaway upon my arrival at work this morning. Or rather a hood ornament on my Honda, which wasn’t noticeable until I was climbing a steep ramp in a parking garage. A frog! Or maybe a toad, although this guy had a shiny complexion. Hope he stays put until the ride home because there’s probably not much of a future for him on the fourth floor of an enclosed garage.

  16. coozledad said on May 18, 2017 at 8:56 am

    Ol’ hamburger cock has passed on to the pussy grabbin’ patch in the sky.

    Or they’re catching his drippings in hell. Burn, motherfucker.
    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/roger-ailes-has-died

  17. Deborah said on May 18, 2017 at 9:49 am

    Kind of a shock that Ailes has died but when you look at photos of him it’s not surprising. He always looked unhealthy to me. Less than a year ago he was ousted from Fox news. I wonder when O’Reily will keel over?

  18. Dave said on May 18, 2017 at 9:51 am

    “Dreamland” is on my stack of books to read. When I opened it up, I landed on a page talking about folks in “The Bottoms”, which is the low rent area in Lucasville, about 12 miles up the road from Portsmouth. My mother, who grew up there, used to talk about folks in “The Bottoms”, and her stories were from 70 plus years ago now.

    I’ve always been grateful that my parents moved away from Scioto County when they married.

    Ailes is dead.

  19. Jolene said on May 18, 2017 at 9:51 am

    Here’s the WaPo obituary for Ailes. Made me marvel at how much misery we might have been spared if the fathers of Ailes and Trump had loved their sons.

  20. basset said on May 18, 2017 at 9:57 am

    Advertising from a bygone time:

    https://www.hemmings.com/blog/2017/05/17/see-america-ride-greyhound/?refer=news

  21. coozledad said on May 18, 2017 at 9:59 am

    I wonder when O’Reily will keel over?

    Tertiary syph works slow.

    Part of the reason Ailes croaked, is with all that money, he couldn’t buy anything but the reflexive disgust of the women he creeped on. He was a loser by his own fucked up metric.

    What was he going to do with more life anyway? Get fatter? call the local police to check out every stray noise at his house? People always says don’t speak ill of the dead. It’s more wrong to speak ill of death in this case. The mercy of death can’t be overstated for Ailes.

  22. Heather said on May 18, 2017 at 10:03 am

    Aren’t there statistics that show men tend to die soon after retirement? In this case, it was a forced retirement, but same result. Anyway, he was not a good person and will not be missed by many.

  23. Heather said on May 18, 2017 at 10:05 am

    Also Chris Cornell, the lead singer of Soundgarden (big Seattle grunge-era band) and other bands, died last night, apparently a suicide, at 52. He had an amazing voice and based on the articles I read about him, seemed a genuinely nice guy. He had three kids.

  24. Julie Robinson said on May 18, 2017 at 10:15 am

    This is terribly unkind but Ailes always reminded me of Jabba the Hut.

  25. Sherri said on May 18, 2017 at 10:37 am

    Can I add to Nancy’s list? I’m tired of former finance/hedgies/quants who, have royally fucked up the world economy, feel that their job is now to go around telling the rest of us how awful we all are and look at the poor people. Whether you’re JD Vance or Chris Arnande, why don’t you both shut the hell up until you’ve learned the nuances and pitfalls of your new fields as you did your old ones?

    In both cases, in the guises of serious truth tellers telling uncomfortable truths, they’re telling versions of just-so tales.

    (Arnande has a physics Ph.D. and worked as a trader. A Master of the Universe who thinks anything can be derived from first principles, no experience necessary.)

    And Ohio? With all due respect, Jeff(tmmo), to read the national media you’d think the Ohio Valley is the only place in the country that has problems.

    I’d like to see some attention and follow up to the one story I read in the WaPo(?) about working conditions at the car manufacturer in Birmingham, for example. Sure, there were jobs, but at what cost? If we want to talk about immigration, let’s take a look at how migrant farm workers are treated. Come on out west, where the consequences of inequality are stark, right next to the enormous tech wealth.

  26. BethB from Indiana said on May 18, 2017 at 10:39 am

    Jeff (tmmo), the Portsmouth, Ohio, story broke my heart. That was my dad’s hometown, and we visited there and its encircled burg, New Boston (defunct steel mill town) many, many summers when I was growing up. My grandparents were there, cousins I loved, wonderful aunts and uncles, etc. But, and it’s a key factor, my dad got out. He went to college at Rio Grande (a hour or so away) and then to Denison, and on from there. HE GOT OUT. An uncle and aunt did, too. The other other three siblings stayed and were school teachers and store owners.

    I don’t know what would have happened to the family if my grandmother hadn’t stressed education so much. She practically pulled my father by the ear up to Rio Grande (in a borrowed car) and knocked on the college president’s door. This was 1935, the heart of The Depression, and no one had any money. She begged the president to let my dad come to college and work his way through. The man asked my dad if he’d be willing to clean his (the president’s house) on weekends, and that’s how my dad got to go to college. The story is family lore to us, but it is true, nonetheless. Grandpa was laid off from the steel mill, the family was on “relief” as my dad called it, and there were six living kids to feed (out of ten born to my grandparents), but my grandmother was the strong one in the family, and she did what she could to keep her family together. The church was a big factor, too, for her; she was very involved, and so were the kids. My grandfather got with the program somewhere along the line, too.

    I know I have gone on too long about personal stuff that no one at nn.com cares about, but this story really got to me because of my ties to Portsmouth. I only go back now for funerals. My father has one sibling left. His will be next.

  27. Suzanne said on May 18, 2017 at 10:56 am

    Perhaps the rest of the country is finding out what we here in the Hoosier state have known for quite some time.

    http://www.indystar.com/story/opinion/2017/05/18/goldberg-its-time-pence-take-stand/328439001/

  28. Peter said on May 18, 2017 at 11:04 am

    Re: Roger Ailes – I always heard that something that evil never dies. Well, I’ll be. Maybe there’s hope for Dick Cheney and Dolt 45 yet.

  29. jcburns said on May 18, 2017 at 11:10 am

    Ailes. Completely and finally gone. If journalism has any self-repairing DNA left, now maybe we have a chance.

  30. Charlotte said on May 18, 2017 at 11:20 am

    Sherri — years ago, before I left San Jose, I was stuck in traffic one day as they were building yet another section of the Cisco campus. Scene: foreground, bus stop with 3 tech guys carrying laptop cases, behind them, several Mexican farm workers hoeing a zucchini field, behind them, the new Cisco buildings going up. That field is Cisco buildings now of course too …

    Out here, we’re experiencing classic gentrification pains — old railroaders and their families priced out of the housing market, no blue collar jobs left for folks lacking an entrepreneurial streak or trade skills (lots of work for electricians, plumbers and carpenters, but you have to be able to keep a driver’s license, show up and to think). So — meth, petty theft, downward spiral, unwashed hungry kids in the school going home to chaotic and falling-apart small houses or trailers. Gentrification ends pretty abruptly at my property line on this block (although I have hopes for the folks who bought the 2 little houses next door, on the other hand, 3rd time they’ve sold in 10 years). Uphill end of the block, solid hippies/artists/couple of young famililes — downhill end of the block, guy in his 40s who dropped out of school after 8th grade, living in the house he inherited from his folks, cutting wood and selling drugs for a living.

  31. Deborah said on May 18, 2017 at 11:25 am

    Suzanne at #27, I can’t get the link to work?

    BethB, I love hearing people’s family stories.

  32. Suzanne said on May 18, 2017 at 11:30 am

    Link works for me, Deborah.
    Try this one: https://townhall.com/columnists/jonahgoldberg/2017/05/17/dear-vice-president-pence-its-time-to-take-a-stand-n2327618

  33. Deborah said on May 18, 2017 at 11:39 am

    OK Suzanne, that one works.

  34. Deborah said on May 18, 2017 at 11:46 am

    https://mobile.twitter.com/Justinwcomedy/status/864968239817863168/photo/1

  35. Sherri said on May 18, 2017 at 11:48 am

    When we moved to Redmond 14 years ago, I remember having a chat with the then-superintendent of schools about the fact that the district was basically reliant on the wives of tech employees for its teacher pool, because of the cost of living. It wasn’t completely true, of course, and he didn’t mean it that way, but he was well aware of the precarious nature of the situation. Now, that pool has shrunk considerably, as there are fewer Microsoft spouses willing or even eligible because of visa restrictions to teach, and the differences in teacher pay and the cost of housing have only gotten worse.

    The first thing I ask, when people complain to me about all the building happening in Redmond, is “where do your children’s teachers live?” When you live in an area like ours, the answer is seldom here, unless there’s tech money involved.

  36. Scout said on May 18, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    Josh Marshall touches on three big stories from the news tsunami of yesterday:
    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/big-trouble-8

    This article from the current issue of Time is scathing: http://time.com/4783929/president-trump-loyalty-test/

    Two of my favorite twit retorts to Senator Mark Warner were courtesy of infinite jest liker‏ @KillGoldfish
    “If this ramp cost $10 billion and was used to wheel a bomb into an aircraft you’d be tripping over yourself to support it @RepMarkWalker”

    “Imagine going from being an obscure congressional nobody to “that fuck who hates ducklings” @RepMarkWalker”

    coozledad’s assessment of Warner was the poetry we all have come to expect.

  37. LAMary said on May 18, 2017 at 1:00 pm

    My good friend Bill filmed this documentary. If you get Fuse you can see it in three days.

    http://www.nbcnews.com/…/disability-activist-pilot-jessica-…

  38. basset said on May 18, 2017 at 1:01 pm

    I’m going to keep posting on random topics until something gets a response.
    Went to the dentist yesterday, too worked up and fearful, left before anything got done. Anyone else have that problem?

  39. Deborah said on May 18, 2017 at 1:18 pm

    Here’s a response basset. I hate, hate, hate, hate going to the dentist. I don’t mind the actual procedures but holding my mouth open for a long time is excruciating for me and they don’t seem to be able to do anything about that at my dentist. My jaw aches and my lips get dried out to the point that I’m almost crying. I will put off going as long as I can.

  40. Jolene said on May 18, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    Scout @36, I think you are mixing up people. The duck ramp guy is Mark Walker of North Carolina, who is a Republican member of the House. Mark Warner is a Democratic senator from Virginia and, unlike Walker, is not an asshole.

  41. Jolene said on May 18, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    LAMary, your link doesn’t work.

  42. basset said on May 18, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    We had forearm across the collarbones, oh come on that doesn’t hurt country dentists when I was growing up, that’ll stick with ya.

  43. Suzanne said on May 18, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    So Toby Keith, singer of “Beer for my horses”, “The Taliban Song”, “Get Drunk & Be Somebody” as well as a song that includes the line “We’ll put a boot up your ass, it’s the American way” is doing an all male concert in Saudi Arabia when Trump is there. What will he sing if he can’t sing about beating Muslims and drinking?

    My head is going to explode.

  44. Bitter Scribe said on May 18, 2017 at 1:46 pm

    From what I understand of Ailes, he was perpetually confrontational, taking everything personally and making everything personal. It helped him create the Fox News juggernaut (or shit factory), but it couldn’t have done much for his health.

    Jonah Goldberg’s faith in the integrity of Mike Pence is…touching. Or pathetic. He writes:

    There’s a reason only two VPs (Martin Van Buren and George H.W. Bush) have been elected straight to the Oval Office since the passage of the 12th Amendment in 1804.

    Notice how he omits that both of them were tossed out after one term.

  45. Jakash said on May 18, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    Well, Basset, I was gonna say that I liked the Greyhound ads you linked to, but didn’t bother. That artwork is so colorful and appealing. I loved the man in a suit and woman with gloves on to ride the ole Greyhound. Though, come to think of it, gloves might not be a bad idea! Plenty there for Brian to appreciate, too, ahem. ; )

    I avoid going to the dentist the old-fashioned way: by just not showing up as often as I’m supposed to. But I’ve been genetically fortunate to have had very good teeth. I’ve got enough other problems; it irks me that I’m supposed to go twice a year for something that there’s nothing wrong with…

  46. Scout said on May 18, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    Jolene: You’re right! My bad. Walker, not Warner. At least the tweeter I quoted had it right. I’ll chalk my sloppiness up to being awake half the night with insomnia.

    bassett, I have to force myself to make an appointment and then show up for it, because I really hate going. Prior to 2015, I went about 5 years without a visit and then spent the next year and a half catching up on all that went wrong in between. I’ve learned to use meditation techniques to basically check out while in the chair. Dentistry is mostly painless these days, and the awfulness tends to be mostly in my head. Maybe it’s because those of us of a certain age remember too well when it wasn’t painless that dread becomes our default reaction.

  47. Connie said on May 18, 2017 at 2:47 pm

    I will agree with Scout regarding meditation techniques in the dental chair. I use the relaxation techniques I learned at LaMaze. In various chairs and stirrups. My dad was a dentist, I wouldn’t miss that twice a year cleaning. Though I have had way too much major dental in recent years.

  48. Sherri said on May 18, 2017 at 2:49 pm

    I had a panic attack in the middle of a procedure at the dentist once. Had to stop everything, because I couldn’t breathe. Quitting at that point wasn’t an option, though, so I had to talk myself off the ledge and get back to it. My dentist was very understanding and worked as quickly as possible.

    Now whenever I need to have work like that done, I wear headphones and make them cut a hole in that piece of rubber they stretch over things to isolate the area.

  49. Jolene said on May 18, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    Re dentistry: Just be glad you don’t have to wait in line.

  50. Rana said on May 18, 2017 at 3:15 pm

    I also try to zone out and stare at nothing when I’m at the dentist. I’ve had tons of orthodontic work over my life, so by now I’m mostly used to it, though it’s still uncomfortable (small mouth, TMJ). I’ve found a good dentist or hygienist has no problem stopping their work if you need to rest your face or spit or swallow – you’re the one paying for it, after all. I’ve also found that if you’re anxious, it’s worth asking if you can wear that lead apron thing while they work. Something about the weight of it is calming.

  51. nancy said on May 18, 2017 at 3:29 pm

    If you ask, your dentist may call in a very small Rx for one or two Valium, Xanax or some other anti-anxiety med, which I’m told can be quite effective.

  52. Bitter Scribe said on May 18, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    Like many other people here, I’m old enough to remember when going to the dentist was genuinely painful. They’ve made great strides in pain management. I recently had two root canals, and while I wouldn’t compare it to, say, getting a massage from a Victoria’s Secret model, it wasn’t bad at all. The only really painful moment was when she injected me with the anesthetic, and that was over in a second.

  53. basset said on May 18, 2017 at 4:17 pm

    Took some effort to get a script for two Valium instead of just one, last time it had no effect that I could feel. They required a driver to take me home if I was gonna use those, I am worried about Mrs B’s driving so I thought I’d tough it out and couldn’t. walking out through an office full of women with none of them saying anything was pretty difficult.
    So… next time they are gonna use something stronger than Valium, which is essentially baby aspirin to me, and I will see if Jr can drive me home.

  54. Scout said on May 18, 2017 at 4:22 pm

    Good plan, bassett. Whatever it takes. And to hell with what anyone thinks. We’re all triggered by something.

  55. Jenine said on May 18, 2017 at 4:25 pm

    For me it’s not the pain, as much as the vulnerability of letting someone poke around where they *could* cause pain. It’s just not natural. I get through it by concentrating on moving each individual toe in interesting ways.

  56. susan said on May 18, 2017 at 4:33 pm

    Don’t any of you have a dentist who uses nitrous oxide? That really works for me. And because the dentist can bring you down with oxygen in moments, there are no aftereffects and you can drive yourself home.

  57. Deni Menken said on May 18, 2017 at 4:35 pm

    Pre-fluoride mouthful of 1950’s fillings combined with a sadistic dentist in my youth left it’s mark. My first experience with Novocain at 20 (army wife) convinced me that Dr. Sperry was indeed sharing the same room in Hell with Miss Chapman, my 4th grade teacher whose goal that last year in the classroom was to break me of daydreaming.
    Lamaze breathing helps but involuntary tears still manage to seep into my ears for all procedures.

  58. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on May 18, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    Sam Quinones likes Chris Arnade. His main stock in trade has been his photography, which ads a different dimension to the same story. Sam’s in-depth journalism is the best reading, but Arnade gives you the visual context, along with a few other vignettes . . . and as for parachuting, he’s doing it repeatedly around the country; on Twitter & Medium he is working out loud through what he’s trying to figure out. I thought his closing about the question of calling child protection was a useful point to raise, but maybe because I ask myself “what’s actually going to help, and is it for me to say” three or four times a week.

    Just because Dreher likes bourbon, I’m not going to stop drinking it.

  59. Jeff Borden said on May 18, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    It’s so typical of this vulgar presidency that he would take along a mediocre country singer like Toby Keith. There are some truly wonderful artists in that medium, but Keith is the Nickelback of C&W. I’m ready to have a good laugh at the various and sundry gaffes likely to emerge from this overseas tour of the Orange King, but then I’m reminded of how it will play in the rest of the world and the laughter dies in my throat. Israeli noses already are out of joint over his babbling about extraordinarily secret intelligence and, now, his demand to land his helicopter atop Masada, a World Heritage site. When denied the right to land there, our toddler-in-chief simply scratched it off his to-do list. (Other world leaders just take the cable car to the top, but not our boy.)

    The visit to Saudi Arabia is rife with possibilities for fuckups, but there’s a lot of money to be made as we supply a government that funds Wahabi fanaticism around the globe with the latest weapons of war. Maybe Toby Keith will insult a prince?

    And then there’s the meeting with Pope Francis, who has blasted the Orange King’s stance on immigration quite explicitly. I wish the pope would perform an exorcism and rid the world of this asshole.

  60. Deborah said on May 18, 2017 at 5:10 pm

    Here’s something completely off topic: I just found out they’re going to be using our building for filming a movie called “Widows”, with an all star cast. The only ones I remember are Liam Neesan, Viola Davis, Colin Farrell, Robert Duvall etc. I have no idea if any of those actors will actually be here or not. The only thing is filming happens May 23 til June 15 and we may be out of town. We’re going up to northern Wisconsin over Memorial Day and then we go to Charlotte, NC for a few days, the NM for most of the summer. Oh well, I’m definitely going to see the movie when it comes out.

  61. basset said on May 18, 2017 at 5:18 pm

    Susan, I was nitrous’d to the max before they gave up on me, or I gave up on myself – lying there with the nose piece on for a good half-hour while they kept turning it up.

    Exuberance of youth just now… I’m on a city bus going home through the tourist commercial area and two semi-provocatively dressed young women just came down the sidewalk, one of em wearing a t-shirt that read “Get lost, creep.”

  62. Sherri said on May 18, 2017 at 5:41 pm

    Maybe I’m just tired of hearing from rich white guys.

  63. David C. said on May 18, 2017 at 6:46 pm

    Nitrous oxide gave me a case of nausea I’ll never forget. The initial rush was pretty cool, but never again.

  64. Charlotte said on May 18, 2017 at 7:55 pm

    Jeff @59 — we have three days of rodeo over the 4th of July every year (quite good rodeo, all the big names come because there’s good $$), but the $K#L#&^@! Toby Keith! Argh. Himself lives across from the fairgrounds, and folks stream down our sidewalk to get to the rodeo, which is right in town. So we play a LOT of very loud Parliament Funkadelic … to … educate the crowds.
    (We also have a former Sony Music exec in town, who currently runs Rodney Crowell’s touring schedule, so we get a lot of good authentic Country and Americana acts coming through.)

  65. Colleen said on May 18, 2017 at 8:52 pm

    I get really relaxed in the dentist’s chair. Of course, outside of getting my wisdim teeth out (dry socket. Holy crap that hurts), I just go for cleanings…have never had any work done.
    Re: getting out of dying Ohio towns. My mom escaped Lorain in the 50s for Ohio U’s J school. Thank god she did. There would have been no future in Lorain. And she said all the time she was growing up, she knew in her soul that she had to get out.

  66. alex said on May 18, 2017 at 11:05 pm

    Mr. Toad was still sitting on my hood after eight-plus hours. (See post at #15.) I was rootin’ for him to make it all the way back home, but he took a flying leap as soon as the proverbial grass looked greener.

  67. Deborah said on May 18, 2017 at 11:22 pm

    Alex, good at least it sounds like he made it out of the parking garage.

  68. David C. said on May 19, 2017 at 6:11 am

    Off topic of anything, my Google doodle is wishing me a happy birthday this morning. My birthday is July 16. Somehow, I feel better that the data they collect on me is this shitty.

  69. Suzanne said on May 19, 2017 at 7:06 am

    So what happens to Assange now?

  70. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on May 19, 2017 at 7:24 am

    College lecture tour.

  71. ROGirl said on May 19, 2017 at 7:35 am

    How many ways will trump manage to embarrass this country on his trip?

  72. basset said on May 19, 2017 at 8:43 am

    In more than we ever thought possible.

    On a happier note, new kitty is well settled in – started exploring right after she got in the door and was purring and playing with a ribbon before she’d been here half an hour.

  73. Suzanne said on May 19, 2017 at 8:45 am

    Hooray for the new kitty!!!

  74. coozledad said on May 19, 2017 at 8:57 am

    The entire Republican party is pushing to end the Trump/Russia investigation because they are all compromised, all traitors. This president doesn’t get to flay away to whichever gilt San Clemente he chooses. He goes to jail. And Reince Priebus, Jeff Sessions, Paul Ryan, Kevin McCarthy, Sarah Huckabee, Mitch McConnell go with him. The entire Republican party down to the state levels should face racketeering charges, and the dogsbodies should have their heads shaved before they’re whipped through the streets to their transport to Russia.
    https://www.lawfareblog.com/what-james-comey-told-me-about-donald-trump

  75. Deborah said on May 19, 2017 at 9:23 am

    I don’t want Trump to be impeached at least until 2018, so he can take as many Republicans down with him in the midterms. Then if he makes it until 2020, he’s a goner in that election along with Pence and as many other Republicans as possible. Then we can have universal healthcare and all the other things we need. Hopefully not too much damage will be done in the meantime. I hope this isn’t wishful thinking.

  76. Deborah said on May 19, 2017 at 9:44 am

    Coozledad’s link at #74 is well worth the read.

  77. Sherri said on May 19, 2017 at 10:11 am

    The last time Anthony Romero, the Executive Director for the ACLU, was in town, the election was still a few weeks away, and he talked about the excitement about the progress we could potentially make under a more liberal Supreme Court with a small intimate gathering of about 10 of us over dinner at the home of the Washington state ED. (That led to me going to SCOTUS!)

    Last night, Anthony Romero discussed what the ACLU has done and will do to continue to fight for civil liberties and the rule of law, only this time to over 900 people at the Moore Theatre in Seattle. He was in town for the Gates CEO Summitt over at Microsoft. I’m not sure the man has slept since the election, but he’s still going strong. He was prepared for this; the ACLU had worked up papers on what trump’s positions were and what those meant constitutionally last July. They tried to get attention for the report then, but interest was low. He said he got bumped off Maddow three times that week.

    But they were ready. They’ve filed 44 suits overall since the election, 16 about the Muslim ban. One of the strategies is to just throw sand in the gears; keep the administration busy defending to slow down new initiatives.

    He said the membership of the ACLU has quadrupled since the election, while the average age of the membership has halved. At that earlier gathering, I was one of the youngest in the room of white females, while last night was a very diverse gathering.

  78. Deborah said on May 19, 2017 at 10:22 am

    Sherri, where can we go online (?) to get more info on the 44 suits? I’m interested.

  79. Jeff Borden said on May 19, 2017 at 11:08 am

    I found this link on the Washington Post site chronicling all the lies and misleading statements made by the Orange King. . .so far.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/politics/trump-claims-database/?tid=a_inl&utm_term=.b74ec85e147f

  80. Sherri said on May 19, 2017 at 11:09 am

    Deborah, go to ACLU.org and select the “Defending our rights” option on the menu. That will list all the cases the ACLU is involved in.

    The best way to stay up to date is to sign up for their email list.

  81. brian stouder said on May 19, 2017 at 11:47 am

    Basset’s Greyhound ad was quite interesting…makes one wonder if buses might make a main-stream come-back at some point, as our airlines seem to have lost their mojo.

    This week has been a full one, and Saturday is Shelby’s graduation party – which is subject A1A with my detail-oriented wife (so far, so good)…and Graduation Day itself is June 10 – which is hurtling toward us!! – and then she zooms off for Indiana University at Bloomington, literally that same day!

    Oy! What a mix of pride/anxiety/love/fear/joy

  82. basset said on May 19, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    Brian, I am something of a transportation nerd… used to read Russell’s Guide and think about where all those routes went, now I do the same with Flightaware. I think any appreciable increase in intercity bus use will have to happen in areas of greater density coupled with a sharp increase in fuel prices – and we need, as with transit buses, a widespread consumer attitude change so bus travel is seen as a viable and comfortable alternative, not something you use when you can’t afford a car.
    And thanks, Suzanne, for the support – Bella kitty continues to thrive.

  83. susan said on May 19, 2017 at 12:08 pm

    Regarding cooze’s link at 74, Melissa McEwan casts her cautious eye at the glowing picture of Comey as described by Benjamin Wittes at Lawfare blog. As she points out,

    All of this, of course, is not merely a condemnation of a president who is already well-known for demanding loyalty at the expense of ethics, but is a public defense of Comey being mounted by people who are on his side, for a number of reasons.

    These things must be read within that context. Even if these accounts are true, they have also been carefully shaped to be as favorable as possible to Comey.

  84. susan said on May 19, 2017 at 12:09 pm

    Hmmm, that link didn’t show up. Here’s the whole ugly-looking url: http://www.shakesville.com/2017/05/the-war-between-trump-and-comey.html

  85. Julie Robinson said on May 19, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    Whatever happened to Megabus? A few years ago they were positioning as Greyhound’s replacement. I haven’t heard anything in a while.

    Or maybe we could redevelop our train system? Haha, right.

    Congratulations to Shelby! Our nephew did one of those straight off to IU things a couple of years ago and said it helped him get a jump start for the fall. He already was familiar with the campus, college lectures, time management, and developed a core group of friends. Hope she has a similarly great experience.

    We went to the Chicago concert last night; my hubby’s requested birthday gift. They were nothing short of fantastic and that’s not something I say about many musical groups. They have replaced a few members over the years but only with top musicians, in fact I’d say they are all about making music, with very few rock band trappings. They did have a video screen playing behind them but no fireworks or fancy costumes. Played all the old hits and lots of new stuff too and it seems they are still growing as a group, in a positive way.

    bassett, so glad that psycho kitten is happy in his new home and that the new one seems a hit. My mom’s living room is now dominated by a huge cat tree, scratching stations, and toys everywhere. It’s a complete takeover in the best way.

  86. coozledad said on May 19, 2017 at 12:28 pm

    susan: Yeah. there’s a lot in that account that reads like cover for Comey’s behavior in the election.

    That tells me a lot about what’s coming for Trump. His attorneys recommended that he not sign his financial disclosure forms. He’s a liar in full.

  87. Sherri said on May 19, 2017 at 12:48 pm

    Anthony Romero had some interesting things to say about Robert Mueller last night. He clearly respects Mueller, while not always agreeing with him of course, and was never hesitant to file lawsuits against him (as the ACLU does any administration, but not all people are equally respected.) he said that the ACLU always invites the President, the AG, the FBI director, and various others to their member conference to address the group, and Robert Mueller is the only FBI director who has ever come. He spoke clearly and candidly about his agreements and disagreements with the ACLU, and garnered a standing ovation for his respect in coming and talking.

    He calls Mueller’s appointment as special counsel a “down payment” on the larger, more public work that needs to be done. Much of Mueller’s work won’t be public, and for our system of checks and balances to be robust, we also need a more open process, like a congressional investigation.

  88. basset said on May 19, 2017 at 1:17 pm

    Megabus is still out there but their business model wouldn’t allow them to be a full Greyhound replacement – no stations, no infrastructure to maintain the buses, right now they stop at curbside and contract the mechanical work out. Still a viable alternative on some routes, though.

  89. Deborah said on May 19, 2017 at 1:35 pm

    I remember reading about some pretty horrible crashes of Megabuses in the midwest a few years back. I thought maybe they were out of business because of that, but I guess not.

  90. Jolene said on May 19, 2017 at 1:55 pm

    This article about innovations around the country mentions a new railroad in Florida. Seems like a good idea, though I haven’t heard anything about it other than this mention.

  91. Heather said on May 19, 2017 at 2:20 pm

    My friend was left stranded for hours at a rest stop after a Megabus broke down–I can’t remember how she got home but I don’t think the company was much help. Between that and the story about a bus catching on fire, I think I’d stick with Greyhound: https://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/22/travel/the-day-my-megabus-caught-fire.html?_r=0

  92. Julie Robinson said on May 19, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    There’s a dedicated group of folks here in the Fort who are working on getting high speed rail and a return of Amtrak here. It’s a monumental task. First thing is getting the track upgraded, no small matter.

    Now that y’all mention it, I do remember those Megabus crashes. Our daughter used it several times, once for a youth group going on a trip. They weren’t well off and had to raise every single penny, and if you bought your tickets far enough advance they were super cheap, like $15 for a 60 mile ride. It seems like they kept talking about coming here for trips to the Indy airport, but I’m not sure it ever materialized.

  93. Deborah said on May 19, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    You could take a Megabus from St. Louis to Chicago for about $20 at one point. It was one of those buses that had a horrible crash about 50 miles across the Mississippi from St. Louis, it was right near the town where my husband grew up, where we designed the playground a year or so ago. The accident happened maybe 10 or 12 years ago, maybe more. People in the town talked about that crash for years after.

  94. coozledad said on May 19, 2017 at 4:00 pm

    This time, the leakers are pissing directly in Don’s mouth.
    https://twitter.com/NYDailyNews/status/865652059185360896

    His staff will be shitting razor blades about now. He hasn’t even hit peak bleedout.

  95. coozledad said on May 19, 2017 at 4:12 pm

    This is a straight up admission that Trump has obstructed justice and Pence has committed/suborned perjury.
    https://twitter.com/GaryLegum/status/865653347897835521/photo/1

  96. Judybusy said on May 19, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    I also find it amazing that Trump denied any collusion with the Russians but then added “I’m only speaking for myself.” If I were one of his staff I would be very nervous about this. He clearly is so willing to throw people under the bus.

    I’ve been meaning to share a book recommendation. It’s “Who thought this was a good idea?” by former Obama staffer Alyssa Mastromonaco. It’s a great mix of details about how the White House was run and her own personal story. It’s been a great distraction.

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