Baptism in blood.

One of my birthday gifts was a mandoline slicer, so I can make perfect Potatoes Anna and apple tarts and the like. I christened mine in the traditional way — with blood. I was slicing peppers for some grilled sausages when I gouged a chunk out of my thumb Friday evening.

I’m fine now. It stings a little to hit the space bar, but at least I got the bleeding stopped. Direct pressure isn’t as effective on a flesh gouge as it would be on a simple slice. I feared I wouldn’t be able to swim tomorrow, as the mere touch of water on it had me howling yesterday, but thanks to the magic of time and healing, I could actually wash it with soap and water today. Yay, cellular repair.

It was that kind of a weekend. The painting continued, and is done now — Alan just stepped out to buy window blinds and switch plates. The room looks a million times better, and when we finally get the tree up, it’ll look a million times better, too. I even got some Black Friday weekend shopping done, online and otherwise.

We had a nice Thanksgiving. I did, anyway; Alan didn’t even get any turkey, as his part of the newsroom order-in came with “a piece of shitty dried-out pork loin,” he said. “They’d already run out of turkey.” Poor guy. Well, Christmas is coming. I got to experience my friend’s family, who are all Trumpers, including one gay man. I mainly stayed out of the discussion, but eavesdropped from the next room. Their calculus was simple: Is my life OK? Yes? Then the president must be doing a good job. Amazing. I wish it could be that simple for me. It must be like…like being a dog, maybe. Am I comfortable? Is this a good time to nap? Do I want to scratch behind my ear? Then I will do so!

Oh well. I have a new family room to wipe the paint drips from and return to functional use. Maybe I’ll rearrange the furniture, just to get that new-house feeling again.

You can see I’m running out of anything to say. On to the bloggage.

Marijuana became fully legal for adults in Michigan today. First buyers, a fair number of Hoosiers and Buckeyes. Sorry you guys can’t be as cool as us.

What is a failson? Let the Daily Beast explain:

He is an upper- (or upper-middle) class incompetent who is protected by familial wealth from the consequences of his actions.

… One is not born a failson. Nor does one simply inherit the status of failson. No—failson status is earned through a display of equal parts incompetence, stupidity, and arrogance. And until his book, no person in America—or maybe even the world, so bursting at the seams with louche heirs and dissolute royals with no throne to sit their pampered arses on—illustrated all the facets of a failson better than (Donald Trump) Junior.

A fun read.

So, let’s take on the full week ahead with optimism and gratitude. And all 10 fingers.

Posted at 6:37 pm in Current events, Same ol' same ol' |

50 responses to “Baptism in blood.”

  1. alex said on December 1, 2019 at 7:00 pm

    I bought a cheap mandolin slicer at Kroger’s around Easter time. Didn’t lose any skin, just ten bucks that I might as well have spent on something else. My scalloped potatoes came out rather more mashed.

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  2. Deborah said on December 1, 2019 at 7:14 pm

    LB has a mandolin, I’m extra super careful when I use it because I know a lot of people who have given up blood to it. I’m extra super careful with knives in general because I’ve had some bad cuts over the years.

    The Molly Jong Fast article about Failsons was hilarious and so true. Love her.

    I think NM is at least another year away from legal recreational pot but IL’s is supposed to happen soon.

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  3. Sherri said on December 1, 2019 at 7:35 pm

    Since I am capable of cutting myself on a cheese grater, when I got a mandoline slicer I also got a pair of cut resistant gloves. So far, they’ve worked! I’ve used the slicer without taking a chunk out of any fingers.

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  4. Little Bird said on December 1, 2019 at 7:53 pm

    Yeah, I’ve got a mandoline. and a thing you can hold to protect your fingers. I don’t really use it because it gets in the way. But you REALLY need to pay attention when using a mandoline.

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  5. Julie Robinson said on December 1, 2019 at 8:39 pm

    Knives and graters are plenty dangerous for me too. We use the food processor to finely slice potatoes, but then of course you have to take the blade out to wash it, and OH, that’s gonna hurt!

    We spent a very mellow afternoon at the Botanical Conservatory, hardly busy at all for once. If you live in the Fort, do yourself a favor and stop by for an hour or so. The Christmas decorations are beautifully done as always, and your soul feels healed. Lots of good spots for pictures, too. My loins feel girded for the week ahead.

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  6. Colleen said on December 1, 2019 at 10:44 pm

    Did anyone see the latest about Mitch Daniels, former governor of Indiana and current president of Purdue? Apparently he made a racially insensitive comment, and when told it was such, instead of saying “oh, wow. That was not my intention, I apologize “,he flipped it all around to make himself a victim in this scenario and claim he is being attacked.
    This, IMO, is a great example of white male privilege. When faced with the consequences of their behavior, they claim victimhood.

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  7. Dexter Friend said on December 2, 2019 at 2:27 am

    I wish I could blame it on Trump, because when Obama was prez this did not happen: I get my pills and inhalers from the Veterans Administration. Three of my pills were switched to the cheapest generics. My irritation these days is I have to cut some pills in half, and one I have to quarter a small pill as the generics I take come in limited sizes. My problem is due to a communications breakdown; I ran out of a pill-medication. I was resigned to driving to Toledo ( I usually get all meds through the USPS), but a tech in Ann Arbor told me that particular pill could be purchased OTC anywhere. And so it was. The pills came 14 to a package, wrapped in non-destructo plastic which I tackled with sharp scissors…didn’t make a dent. I broke out a new razor-knife used for jobs handymen do that require sharp as hell blades. The first 7 days, no problem, but it took an average of five minutes to free one capsule. Day 8, a twist in the plot. The razor knife slipped and I sliced skin off my hand like I was peeling a potato in the kitchen. Alcohol and ointment and bandaging for two days was all it amounted to.

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  8. Dexter Friend said on December 2, 2019 at 2:40 am

    Is this possible? An old grade school classmate is a Trumper, and she posts these awful Trump memes and huge portraits-in-pencil sketch on Facebook. Two weeks ago she posted one from a long time ago that I remembered as one that was tagged as having been generated by R_uss-ian b-ots. The punctuations are there on purpose. OK…I do not search web sites or Pornhub looking for nudes, Russian or from anywhere…I do not want my inboxes flooded forever with that stuff, period. So I Facebook messaged a good friend to tell him how this woman is posting this Trump garbage. Within 24 hours my Yahoo! email and my Facebook messenger page were jammed up with pictures of semi-clad Russian women and captioned both in English and Cyrillic, wanting to “be your girlfriend” and bullshit like that. Totally I must have deleted over 100 ! I assume every word I type is being scanned by R-us–i-an b–ots. What else could it be?

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  9. alex said on December 2, 2019 at 7:38 am

    So Mitch Daniels announces that Purdue has landed “an African-American scholar, one of the world’s rarest creatures.” Sounds like he was affecting a very ill-considered carnival barker schtick and it blew up in his face. What a dick.

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  10. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 2, 2019 at 8:14 am

    Hey, whaddaya know, Mitch can write a good column every now and then!

    (the other Mitch)

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  11. Peter said on December 2, 2019 at 9:56 am

    We had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend, although it did depend on a lot of things breaking the right way, which they did. Our nephews and nieces were able to make it even though the weather was bad, and we were able to grill/roast/fry/cook everything up without incident.

    Anyway, my lovely spouse and I saw The Irishman on Saturday, and we couldn’t stop arguing over one scene – when Jimmy Hoffa and his crew were in an ice cream shop when they receive word that JFK has been shot, Hoffa looks at the TV screen then goes back to eating his sundae. My wife says that gee, I know he hated the Kennedy’s, but just shrugging your shoulders and going back to eating ice cream seems a little harsh, and I’m like it’s ice cream – and if you like ice cream as much as Jimmy Hoffa (which I did not know to be the case), that sundae is not going to stop melting just because somebody you don’t particularly like lost part of his skull.

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  12. JodiP said on December 2, 2019 at 10:06 am

    I have also sliced my thumb on a mandoline–totally my fault, because I wasn’t using the holder-guard thing. it’s awkard and doesn’t always grab the food well. I usually just use my knife to cut things thinly; it’s OK if everything isn’t exactly 1/8″ thick.

    “Failing up” is a also a term used to describe people of privilege who despite messing up get promoted, etc.

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  13. basset said on December 2, 2019 at 11:12 am

    Those still in and around the Fort might find this of interest, looks like it’s in Huntington:

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  14. Sherri said on December 2, 2019 at 11:56 am

    These are the cut resistant gloves I use:

    Much cheaper than a trip to the ER, and less painful than a cut on the hand. I ditch the food holder on the mandoline, which I find awkward and hard to use, and use the gloves.

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  15. David C. said on December 2, 2019 at 12:34 pm

    I’ve done myself on a mandoline too. It was a perfect little slice, I’ll give it that.

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  16. Jeff Borden said on December 2, 2019 at 12:46 pm

    We spent Thanksgiving in Strongsville, Ohio, about 20 miles south of Cleveland. Instead of shopping on Friday, my wife and I accompanied by our 30-year-old nephew visited the Cleveland Museum of Art. Wow! It was quite impressive with some terrific works by all the masters on display. . .and because of some endowment, admission is always free except for special exhibits. The museum is set near Severance Hall, home of the world class Cleveland Symphony Orchestra, along with the Museum of Natural History and the Cleveland Botanical Garden.

    It reminded me that America’s older northern cities, while held in disdain by so many who sneer at the woes of Cleveland. . .or Detroit. . .or Milwaukee. . . contain art, music, culture and architecture that Atlanta or Dallas or Charlotte can only dream of. We’ll definitely return to the Art Museum. We covered less than half during our half-day visit.

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  17. nancy said on December 2, 2019 at 12:48 pm

    A pair of those gloves is on my Christmas list.

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  18. nancy said on December 2, 2019 at 12:55 pm

    Jeff, even Flint has a pretty great little museum. (Thanks, Charles Stewart Mott.) In fact, Flint has a nice “cultural campus” of museum, community college, etc. When I did some reporting there, whoever I talked to said the goal was to make it possible for even lowly GM line workers to access culture, free or at very low prices. At one time, you could get off the second shift at 11 p.m. and instead of going to a bar, take a pottery class there. (This is one reason I generally don’t join in GM- or big automotive-bashing, while fully acknowledging all their faults. For a time, they were the platonic ideal of excellent corporate citizens, and still are, in many ways.)

    As for the Detroit Institute of Arts, it’s a top-10-in-the-nation institution, which is one reason the bankruptcy settlement that deprived creditors of a full-scale liquidation was so satisfying. Fuck Virginia Postrel, Rod Dreher and others who said a selloff was the right thing to do.

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  19. Jakash said on December 2, 2019 at 1:22 pm

    While I appreciate high culture more than sports these days, and am well aware of the cultural richness of Cleveland, I gotta second the other Jeff’s contribution to today’s e-klatch @ #10.

    “It has become maddening. A November masochism. It’s worse than Charlie Brown falling for Lucy’s phony snap. It’s starting to become Wile E. Coyote getting sucked in by the Road Runner. Ohio State is the dragon waiting outside the castle, and year after year, it blows crimson fire and leaves the Wolverines a charcoaled army.”

    That’s not maddening. That’s a delight!

    That being said, I also appreciate the Proprietress’s informed perspective on GM as a corporate citizen. I’ll take the economic model of the 50s (minus the sexism and racism, needless to say) every time over the “maximum profits for the stakeholders to the exclusion of everything else; workers are disposable nuisances and communities hardly even matter” bullshit version we’ve been relegated to these days.

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  20. Dorothy said on December 2, 2019 at 2:06 pm

    My son’s mother-in-law had a birthday a week ago today and guess what they got her? Yep – a mandoline. She asked for it. I’ve read comments, mostly on this site, often enough to know that I’m not a customer for a mandoline. I’d rather go without because it is inevitable I’d take off too many chunks of finger skin if I use one.

    I love a good mobster movie. BIG fan. But The Irishman left me cold. I so wanted to love it, but it just didn’t move fast enough to suit me. It plodded so much! Blue contact lenses in DeNiro’s eyes were just weird. And the technology to de-age him, Pesci, Pacino, etc. just did not convince me. Taking a middle aged actor and turning him into a senior citizen works fine and dandy. Or casting two actors for the same part can be brilliant. Ray Liotta’s younger self was terrific in Goodfellas. “Haven’t I seen this movie before?” I kept asking myself. Hubby felt the same way as me. I feel like I need to apologize for not enjoying it. The critical acclaim for it is just huge. Maybe it’s like Vincent’s Pizza in Pittsburgh. You either love it or you hate it. There’s no in between.

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  21. Deborah said on December 2, 2019 at 2:18 pm

    Another good Molly Jong Fast piece today, this one is about Lisa Page. I watched a totally disgusting clip today of Trump at a rally feigning an orgasm using Lisa’s name over and over again. That was the last straw for her, she decided to go public after laying low all this time. Trump gets more disgusting every single day. Are there honestly any women who can stomach looking at him, especially after they see that clip? I’d link to the piece but there’s a paywall.

    I’m antsy, waiting to go to the airport in a couple of hours. I’ve gone through my bags a million times making sure I’ve packed everything. I always forget something. I pack lightly so when I forget something it’s a big deal. Everything is carry on for me.

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  22. Julie Robinson said on December 2, 2019 at 2:29 pm

    Why do I think a certain kitchen item is going to show up in all my ads?

    We loved the DIA, and Cleveland is on my list. Last time we were there I was outvoted and ended up at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Surprisingly I enjoyed the experience.

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  23. LAMary said on December 2, 2019 at 3:23 pm

    I may be obsessing on this. The White House posted photos of their Christmas decorations today and there’s Melania strolling around indoors wearing a coat.

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  24. Suzanne said on December 2, 2019 at 3:56 pm

    I have a mandoline. I learned very, very quickly to use the guard. Those gloves look much easier than the guard thing, which really doesn’t work that well.

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  25. Heather said on December 2, 2019 at 5:12 pm

    Robin Givhan has a good write-up of Melania’s decorations and that coat:

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  26. beb said on December 2, 2019 at 5:22 pm

    I’m a little nauseous from all the talk about cuts. I have a real phobia about on the subject.

    While the Daily Beast says you don’t inherit failson status I think an argument can be made that Donald Sr. is as much a failson as it Junior.

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  27. Deborah said on December 2, 2019 at 6:12 pm

    We’re in the Ambassador lounge for American Airlines, my husband has a lifetime membership from his gazillion frequent flyer miles when he visited 3 cities a week for his design projects. It’s a nice way to pass the time in an airport, free food and drinks.

    I couldn’t much make out the photos of Melania and her coat on my iPhone. What’s a jewel neckline? Maybe she’s wearing coats lately to cover up a minor weight gain? That would probably freak her out. With all of the chaos surrounding the president who could blame her for stress eating.

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  28. beb said on December 2, 2019 at 6:41 pm

    Is it just me but has NBC news spent a full week hyping the “Breaking News” that it snows during winter and holiday travelers will always encounter delays? Yes, it was a bad storm but so bad that it needed to lead the evening news every day for a week?

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  29. Jakash said on December 2, 2019 at 6:44 pm

    While Neil Steinberg is quite the wordsmith, he doesn’t usually come to mind when one thinks of poetry. I think that I can safely say that everybody here will enjoy reading this, though, simply titled “Fatherhood.”

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  30. alex said on December 2, 2019 at 6:44 pm

    The Cleveland Art Museum is truly one of the best I’ve ever seen. Definitely put it on your bucket lists.

    Basset, I’m familiar with that building in Huntington. Had no idea someone was making a residence out of it, but it’s quite a standout. There are some incredible structures in that town that can be had relatively cheaply. My ex has a 1913 Craftsman bungalow with some of the most elaborate interior woodwork I’ve ever seen in such a house and it still has the original kitchen cabinetry.

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  31. Dorothy said on December 2, 2019 at 8:26 pm

    Beb you might find this article interesting (weather related)

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  32. basset said on December 2, 2019 at 8:33 pm

    Alex, the downstate Indiana town where I grew up was built pretty much all at once as war worker housing in 1940-41 or so and it has no history before that, no old buildings.

    I have two mandolins and occasionally draw blood while changing strings, happens more with guitars for some reason.

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  33. LAMary said on December 2, 2019 at 9:02 pm

    Thank you so much for that Robin Gihvan article. I’m not the only one wondering what’s up with wearing coats indoors. It looks weird. Stop it, Melania.

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  34. deni said on December 2, 2019 at 9:43 pm

    Maybe she has several layers of clothing on underneath and is ready to escape into the Federal Witness Program at any moment.

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  35. alex said on December 2, 2019 at 10:07 pm

    Basset, I remember you’ve mentioned your hometown before but I’ve forgotten it. I had no idea there were towns founded more recently than the 1800s (or 1700s in the case of very far southern Indiana) other than suburbs of the bigger cities.

    Huntington is kind of interesting in that it was well established prior to the Civil War and had a significant role in the development of the Wabash & Erie Canal in the 1830s. It was originally part of a major native-American reservation that was sold off at the whims of tribal chieftains while the inhabitants were sent packing on the Trail of Tears. It was also Dan Quayle’s hometown. A local political reporter once told me that there was a tradition in Huntington where all graduating seniors were required to tag the water tower with spray paint as a rite of passage. Dan Quayle was the first and only student ever to sign his name.

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  36. basset said on December 2, 2019 at 11:56 pm

    Alex, that’s Crane down in Martin County… company town for a naval ordnance depot built in preparation for WW2. The Wabash & Erie ran about a dozen miles west, around Elnora.

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  37. Deborah said on December 3, 2019 at 6:31 am

    We’re in Paris, it’s 12:30pm and I have major jet lag, I’ve never had it this bad. Business class was fabulous, tons of room. The seat went all the way flat, I slept like a baby. I feel like having slept as well as I did shouldn’t make me feel this wrung out. I can’t even think straight. I need to get out and walk it off.

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  38. LAMary said on December 3, 2019 at 10:38 am

    I am feeling validated. Kevin Drum says Melania’s indoor coat thing is ridiculous. Mother Jones has an article about the White House decorations and the coat is mentioned.

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  39. alex said on December 3, 2019 at 10:48 am

    Here’s Jonathan Capehart of the Washington Post to help me flog a dead horse some more:

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  40. Julie Robinson said on December 3, 2019 at 11:05 am

    LAMary, I thought of you when I first saw Melania’s coat and wondered if you’d comment on it. I mentioned previously that I thought she was copying Kate Middleton, who wears coat dresses so well. Now I wonder if she’s also always thinking of leaving and wants to be prepared to vamoose immediately. Partly because of the Donald, but also partly because of being eastern European. She surely heard stories from her parents, and the history of the area means it might just be lurking in her genes.

    Or, maybe she’s clueless.

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  41. Jenine said on December 3, 2019 at 12:50 pm

    @Jackash, thanks for the fatherhood link. Good and real.

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  42. Suzanne said on December 3, 2019 at 1:21 pm

    It appears that Kamala Harris is out of the race for president. A shame.

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  43. Peter said on December 3, 2019 at 1:30 pm

    Deborah, you are so right about Lisa Page. It’s one of the things that depresses me so much about this moron – there is no bottom.
    Also, there is no end. It doesn’t matter what happens in 2020, this guy will NOT SHUT UP- now, and never. At least Hitler had the good sense to stay out of the media after 1944.

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  44. Dorothy said on December 3, 2019 at 3:06 pm

    Hitler committing suicide was very helpful in April 1945 but I don’t think we can count on 45 doing the same thing. But you sure are right, Peter. He just never shuts up. The best we can hope for is that his dementia worsens to the state that his family has to take his electronic devices away from him.

    I firmly believe that Russia interfered in our election 3 years ago. If we (intelligence personnel) have the proof about this at our disposal, why hasn’t it been made public? Wouldn’t proof finally and once and for all decide this in the minds of Republicans??

    Kamala Harris, I think, will run again. She’s young and ambitious and will definitely be in politics for a long while, as long as she doesn’t f up something really important.

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  45. David C. said on December 3, 2019 at 4:12 pm

    45 is committing slow suicide by hamburders and KFC. I seriously doubt he makes it to election day. He looks like hell.

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  46. Dexter Friend said on December 3, 2019 at 4:23 pm

    Devin Nunes and Lev bed buddies? OMG !

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  47. Dexter Friend said on December 3, 2019 at 4:27 pm

    After I read up on Kamala Harris packing Cal prisons with African Americans at an alarming rate,infuriating African American political groups in California, I had my doubts about her, her compassion, her extreme law and order status, similar to an earlier Joe Biden’s Crime Law stance. I am glad she’s gone. Hell, she laughed and joked about how much she loved to smoke weed, after having convicted so many to prisons for dealing a little reefer.

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  48. alex said on December 3, 2019 at 5:12 pm

    Trump is beginning to look quite haggardly. He knows he’s busted. He knows he’s prolly gonna do time. He knows the size of his “wealth” is gonna be exposed for all the world to see — before they take it away from him. He knows Melania will probably write a tell-all, even though she’ll plagiarize major parts of it. Sucks to be him.

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  49. Deborah said on December 3, 2019 at 6:04 pm

    It’s midnight in Paris and I’m wide awake now of course. I had half of a baguette for dinner, that’s all I wanted and felt like I needed to load up on carbs for energy. My jaws were aching from chewing the crunchy crust so I ended up tearing out the soft bready center. Bread tastes so much better here.

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  50. David C. said on December 3, 2019 at 6:06 pm

    Good bread always fights eating.

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