It’s Super.

Lovely Sunday. The actual sun came out for a while, the temperature topped 50 degrees, I got work done and a workout, and now I’m watching Alan tie flies and listen to KCRW as I wait for the Super Bowl to start. There’s a meat loaf in the oven, because MEAT. There are chips in the pantry, a ripe avocado in the fruit bowl. Low-rent guacamole may be on tap. And the groundhog didn’t see his shadow. I ask you, does life get better?

Well, of course it does. But this’ll do for today.

Listening to KCRW. That is, of course, the public station in Santa Monica, which means we could hardly be more bougie at the moment. But just being able to listen to it in Detroit is one of those sentences I never would have understood just a few years ago. Here’s another, which I heard just the other day: “Buster” — the speaker’s parents’ dog — “is an influencer now. He has more than 3,000 followers on Instagram, and now people send him free stuff. Like his new collar.”

I think Wendy could be an influencer, but I don’t have time to “curate” her “brand.” As it is, just typing the usual blizzard of hashtags these things require to become influential would probably give me writers cramp.

Back to KCRW: We just heard a sponsored-by tag for a “medical intuitive.” Which made Alan, the former health writer, ask what that might be. A quick Wiki, and we have our answer:

A medical intuitive is an alternative medicine practitioner who claims to use their self-described intuitive abilities to find the cause of a physical or emotional condition through the use of insight rather than modern medicine. Other terms for such a person include medical clairvoyant, medical psychic or intuitive counselor.

Oh, wonderful. I see some of them work by phone. I wonder if he could tell when I’m constipated, over the phone from Hawaii.

I understand why so many people hate doctors; our medical system almost requires that they be jerks. FWIW, the closer a doc gets to primary care, the more I like mine. My family-practice guy and gyno are great, and I was relieved that the orthopedist the first guy referred me to is also great. But I kissed two ortho-frogs before I found him, and there have been some real schmucks along the way. That said, I don’t think my arthritis can be cured through essential oils. but a massage would be nice.

However, paying someone to intuit what’s wrong with you is pure Goop-shit.

A little bloggage? Sure.

Bad news, Columbus: Leslie Wexner is about as bad as you’d feared he was:

Victoria’s Secret defined femininity for millions of women. Its catalog and fashion shows were popular touchstones. For models, landing a spot as an “Angel” all but guaranteed international stardom.

But inside the company, two powerful men presided over an entrenched culture of misogyny, bullying and harassment, according to interviews with more than 30 current and former executives, employees, contractors and models, as well as court filings and other documents.

Ed Razek, for decades one of the top executives at L Brands, the parent company of Victoria’s Secret, was the subject of repeated complaints about inappropriate conduct. He tried to kiss models. He asked them to sit on his lap. He touched one’s crotch ahead of the 2018 Victoria’s Secret fashion show.

Executives said they had alerted Leslie Wexner, the billionaire founder and chief executive of L Brands, about his deputy’s pattern of behavior. Some women who complained faced retaliation. One model, Andi Muise, said Victoria’s Secret had stopped hiring her for its fashion shows after she rebuffed Mr. Razek’s advances.

The atmosphere was set at the top. Mr. Razek, the chief marketing officer, was perceived as Mr. Wexner’s proxy, leaving many employees with the impression he was invincible, according to current and former employees. On multiple occasions, Mr. Wexner himself was heard demeaning women.

I know, I know: Abuse at a cheap lingerie company? You don’t say! Still. Look at a picture of those two grizzled geezers standing next to each other and struggle to keep yourself from barfing. Time’s up, indeed.

The other big thing happening this week is, of course, the ultimate debasement of the party that once called itself grand and old, but I have a feeling we haven’t seen the bottom yet.

Don’t have the gorge to talk much about that now. I’ll just leave you with…this. And see you later in the week:

Posted at 6:29 pm in Uncategorized |
 

70 responses to “It’s Super.”

  1. Suzanne said on February 2, 2020 at 7:01 pm

    In Case this was missed because I posted it about 5 minutes before the current post

    I found this interesting, too, from the very right wing online publication The Federalist in 2016
    https://thefederalist.com/2016/10/25/gop-needs-elect-trump-impeach/

    “The Republican Party does have an attractive candidate on its ticket. Socially conservative. Economically conservative. Conservative on national defense. Morally and religiously impeccable. The trouble is, that man is the Republican candidate for vice president, Mike Pence.

    But if Trump were impeached immediately after he took office, the Republican candidate for vice president would become president in his place. Further, if Republicans take the lead in removing Trump from office, the party might regain some of its lost credibility in parts of the electorate that it is anxious to attract.”

    Also, did anyone else feel that the military pre-game fawning was a bit much? I was a bit unsettling to me.

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  2. alex said on February 2, 2020 at 8:48 pm

    Didn’t give two fucks about the big game. Instead watched 60 Minutes and made myself Hungarian comfort food, Túrós tészta. This is a simple dish in which pasta serves as a medium for bacon, cottage cheese and paprika. Sour cream optional but not necessary if you’re watching your figure. Metformin will be the dessert course and maybe I’ll wash that down with an aperitif.

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  3. susan said on February 2, 2020 at 10:01 pm

    “bougie” — ? I had no idea what that slang meant so I looked it up: a thin, flexible surgical instrument for exploring or dilating a passage of the body. Not sure that helped, given the context. Or maybe it does help, given the context of sooper bowel.

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  4. Andrea said on February 2, 2020 at 10:12 pm

    @ Susan, my kids have informed me that “bougie” is slang for “bourgeois.”

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  5. susan said on February 2, 2020 at 10:18 pm

    Ahhh. It’s pronounced boo-zhee, then? I was thinking like boogie woogie. What an old fart.

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  6. beb said on February 3, 2020 at 2:38 am

    All you need to know to understand what’s wrong with Victoria’s Secret is to remember that it’s founder was good buddies with Jeffrey Epstein.

    Nancy took a dump in M Albom at deadlinedetroit.com. It’s hilarious.

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  7. Peter said on February 3, 2020 at 7:26 am

    Hey Susan, don’t try to lay no boogie woogie on the King of Rock and Roll!

    Yes I’m old. I’ll see myself out now.

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  8. Julie Robinson said on February 3, 2020 at 7:39 am

    Alex and I are on the same page about football, and I also don’t care about the commercials or the halftime show. Paid even less attention to politics.

    We’re still unpacking, doing more purging, chipping away at the pile of boxes. Made a big pot of chicken soup, fifth soup of the year. And blissed out on the sunshine. Sometimes, that’s all I need.

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  9. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 3, 2020 at 8:29 am

    Oh, c’mon people.

    https://deadlinedetroit.com/articles/24298/derringer_time_to_pull_the_plug_on_mitch_albom

    Honestly, I think her closing is actually good pastoral advice.

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  10. Julie Robinson said on February 3, 2020 at 9:13 am

    “Stop and smell the roses” Hahahahahaha! That was great, Nance. Making the case that you’d be a better columnist than Mitch any day of the week.

    After scrolling through Facebook, the consensus on the halftime show is that it resembled the headline act at a strip club. And that’s from the more liberal folks. The conservative folks were offended. Of course, I’m offended that people hitting each other and causing permanent damage is considered entertainment, but they’re family and I choose not to start fights.

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  11. Jeff Borden said on February 3, 2020 at 9:48 am

    Super Bowl halftime shows are usually terrible to mediocre. While I have an early CD by Shakira, when she was still singing solely in Spanish and her hair was naturally dark, I own nothing by J.Lo and probably never will. But I enjoyed seeing two Latin women onstage at a time when Hispanics are regularly demonized by our *president and the morally repugnant party from which he sprang.

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  12. LAMary said on February 3, 2020 at 9:57 am

    I thought bougie was French for candle. What’s bougie about listening to KCRW? I’ve been a member since the mid eighties when the studio was in the basement of a junior high school.

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  13. Deborah said on February 3, 2020 at 10:23 am

    Me neither, didn’t watch the game, halftime show or ads. I spent time with relatives in Kansas City when I was a teenager, they were rabid Chiefs fans, they were probably ecstatic about the game. They lived in Missouri not Kansas like Trump tweeted (then deleted). Granted There is a KC in Kansas but the team was in MO, as we all know.

    The high was 57° in Santa Fe yesterday and sunny of course. Some of the ice on our building parking lot melted but it still has a long way to go. Today’s high is expected to be in the upper 40s and then the temps drop like a stone, by tomorrow night it will be 9°.

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  14. ROGirl said on February 3, 2020 at 10:55 am

    I heard bougie (as in bourgeois, not candle) when I worked in Detroit. Out in the burbs it’s not an expression one would hear much.

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  15. Sherri said on February 3, 2020 at 11:22 am

    The most offensive part of the Super Bowl was trump’s ad. The game was exciting, JLo with the Puerto Rican flag and the kids in cages was a pretty strong counterweight to all the rah-rah U-S-A the NFL likes to wrap itself in, and my daughter who has moved out came over and watched the game with us. And we got some sunshine yesterday!

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  16. Deborah said on February 3, 2020 at 12:11 pm

    Wow, I just watched the halftime show on YouTube. Just WOW! That was impressive.

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  17. Dorothy said on February 3, 2020 at 12:15 pm

    The Internet is a marvelous thing:

    SLANG DICTIONARY
    boujee
    or bougie or bad and boujee [boo-jee]

    WHAT DOES BOUJEE MEAN?
    Boujee is hip-hop slang for something “luxurious in lifestyle yet humble in character,” influenced by and often interchanged with the slang bougie.

    I see the origin of it is said to date to 1965-70. Whaddya know?

    Nancy is getting picked on by Mitch Albom lovers at her take down of said sad sack writer at the link Jeff (tmmo) posted @ comment #9 above. There’s just no accounting for taste these days, is there?

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  18. Brian stouder said on February 3, 2020 at 12:27 pm

    Jeff, thanks for the link to Nancy’s typically superb (and entertaining) essay. The comments following were mostly garbage, but with the surprise bonus of a pleasant contribution from Mark GiaQuinta….a win-win!

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  19. Scout said on February 3, 2020 at 12:33 pm

    Whatever paper Maudlin Mitch writes for would be so much better served by dumping him and hiring our Nancy. Exhibit A: “Every time he knocks out another tired take, it’s like they dragged American Pharoah out of his paddock, grass-fat and lame in one foreleg, and made him run the Belmont again.” Exhibit B: “There’s more to life than being a ventriloquist for dead people.”

    Didn’t watch the SB, but like most things I don’t watch IRT, I caught the highlights on Twitter and watched the half time show (LOVED IT) on YouTube. President Idiot’s latest geography faux pas was yet another indication that the dementia is worsening.

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  20. Suzanne said on February 3, 2020 at 12:44 pm

    Scout, I don’t think it’s dementia. I doubt Trump knew there were 2 Kansas Cities in 2 states 20 years ago. Or ever.

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  21. Sherri said on February 3, 2020 at 12:55 pm

    I have to say, I only want to know what Mitch has to say about Haiti after he’s moved there and lived with the people for at least a year, not from his white savior perspective. I’m generally pretty cynical about the whole orphanage in third world countries thing.

    And ugh, I read his Kobe column. He’s a sportswriter in a town with an NBA team, and he doesn’t have a single Kobe story he can sprinkle in? That column reads like someone sat down with the Mitch Albom Death Template and Kobe’s Wikipedia page and knocked it out in 10 minutes. Are we sure he doesn’t have a bunch of interns actually writing his columns?

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  22. Jakash said on February 3, 2020 at 1:31 pm

    With regard to the Albom piece, I liked Nancy’s reference to “jerking tears and boiling them down to sap.” Sweet!

    Re: the “medical intuitive” — “Other terms for such a person include medical clairvoyant, medical psychic or intuitive counselor.” Or, more accurately — snake-oil salesman, fraud, con artist, charlatan or quack.

    The highs yesterday in Chicago were also in the low 50s, and it was sunny, which was a very nice treat, indeed. Of course, for that to happen at this time of year, there are usually strong winds involved. I’ve noted before that when it gets to be 50, there are no calculations for wind chill temp., and decided to look up why. Alas, my limited googling skills have left me with no answer for that.

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  23. Deborah said on February 3, 2020 at 2:12 pm

    The internet is having fun with Trump’s Kansas gaffe. Some of them are laugh out loud funny. He has made so many geography mistakes, the worst one was confusing Baltic countries with the Balkans when he was speaking with Baltic leaders. He’s such a dumb ass. I mean if the Kansas thing was a rare occurrence and he didn’t go apeshit about being criticized one could overlook it. How embarrassing that this jerk is the president.

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  24. Suzanne said on February 3, 2020 at 3:31 pm

    Rush Limbaugh just announced he has advanced lung cancer.
    I am not going to say a word because my mamma taught me that if I can’t say something nice about someone, say nothing.

    https://thehill.com/homenews/media/481234-limbaugh-says-he-has-advanced-lung-cancer

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  25. Dorothy said on February 3, 2020 at 3:54 pm

    Suzanne I have been in Steel Magnolias three times. I played Truvy the first time, Clairee the second and M’Lynn the last time. One of my favorite lines for any of the characters was when Clairee said “If you don’t have something nice to say about somebody, come sit by me!”

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  26. alex said on February 3, 2020 at 4:10 pm

    Three cheers for Rush! And no hurry. Hoping it’s slow and painful for you, ya fuckin’ schmuck.

    I’ve been hearing “bougie” a lot lately, usually from resentful lower-middle-class folks bitching about the upper-middle-class flipping them attitude, or as a term of derision for conspicuous consumers generally.

    I seem to recall in the ’90s a columnist trying to launch a new term — “bobo” — for “bourgeois bohemian,” in other words, people with money and no taste trying to appropriate the fashion sensibilities of artists and urban folk with taste but not necessarily lots of money — modernism, minimalism, etc. Bobo was supposed to be a subclass of yuppie. Damn seems like half a lifetime ago.

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  27. Suzanne said on February 3, 2020 at 5:08 pm

    There was this book by none other than David Brooks: Bobos in Paradise

    https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/18926/bobos-in-paradise-by-david-brooks/

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  28. Snarkworth said on February 3, 2020 at 5:09 pm

    Alex, that was David Brooks, author of “BoBos in Paradise.”

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  29. Julie Robinson said on February 3, 2020 at 5:38 pm

    The schadenfreude is strong, no? And anyone betting his estate will be the same big fat mess that his life has been?

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  30. Deborah said on February 3, 2020 at 5:40 pm

    “If you don’t have something nice to say about somebody, come sit by me”, was actually purported to have first been said by Alice Roosevelt Longworth, the first child of Teddy Roosevelt https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alice_Roosevelt_Longworth. She was quite a character.

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  31. beb said on February 3, 2020 at 5:58 pm

    I confess that I just assumed Kansas City was in Kansas, too. But then I don’t have a staff to fact-check me when I say something stupid.

    The pity os that when Limbaugh is gone some other totally insane vile bog of swamp water will take his place. Promoting Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt is just too lucrative.

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  32. Jeff Borden said on February 3, 2020 at 6:49 pm

    Rush Limbaugh has done nothing but hugely enrich himself by spreading hate, anger, self-pity, racism, sexism, homophobia and Islamaphobia among many others. He’s also a world class hypocrite, taking shots at drug addicts while using his housekeeper to keep him up to his lardy ass in Oxycontin. When he hit big in the mid-1980s –I was the TV/radio critic at the Charlotte Observer at the time– some eateries created “Rush Rooms,” where lunch patrons could listen to his bile while they ate their “meat ‘n’ threes.”

    As a cancer survivor myself, I don’t take any pleasure in his diagnosis, though it’s striking he spent many years as a defender of smokers and disputing the scientific findings on second-hand smoke. As Beb notes, there are plenty of other hate-mongers out there to take his place. Sean Hannity? Mark Levin? We’ll see.

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  33. alex said on February 3, 2020 at 6:59 pm

    Thanks Snarkworth! Now I remember. Never read the book, just long-ago media chat about it…

    I seem to remember Brooks arguing that consumerism was coopting the avant-garde aesthetic of urbanites, and flyover country was being seduced by lattes and Volvos and other high-dollar signifiers of unconventional tastes. Can’t remember if he thought people were being brainwashed into leftism by Restoration Hardware, but I think that’s where he was going with it.

    I have stronger memories when it comes to Tom Wolfe’s Radical Chic, which argued that people intentionally cultivated leftist politics as a fashion statement without any real ideological commitment. That was published ten years before the Reagan era, when stodgy was the new cool and people did exactly the same.

    Plus ca change.

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  34. Deborah said on February 3, 2020 at 7:18 pm

    I have spent some time in Iowa, early in my life and later. My father’s family came from Iowa, I had grandparents there and lots of aunts and uncles. I was born there and my family moved to Florida when I was close to 3. The last 5 years before I retired I had a project in Des Moines and made a lot of trips there from Chicago. Surprisingly Des Moines has some really good restaurants because of all the journalists and politicians that hover around there around caucus time. The only pol I ever saw there was Newt Gingrich, he was staying in the same hotel. As many have said Iowa doesn’t really represent the diversity of much of the rest of the country. This contest tonight doesn’t mean as much as some people think it does. We’ll see.

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  35. susan said on February 3, 2020 at 7:35 pm

    Alex, David “Bobo” Brooks taught a course in “Humility” at Yale University back in 2013 or so.

    That sentence says it all.

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  36. Jeff Borden said on February 3, 2020 at 7:40 pm

    I hope this isn’t sacrilegious, but I look at David Brooks as the Mitch Albom of political columnists. He’s mayonnaise. He’s plain pasta. He’s red delicious apples. He’s offbrand mac ‘n’ cheese. Brooks is insufferably smug in his self-assurance that he has his stethoscope on the heart of ‘Murica. The next time he writes something interesting will be the first time. He’s the Bobo.

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  37. Sherri said on February 3, 2020 at 8:20 pm

    Not only did Brooks teach a class on humility mostly featuring his own works, he wrote a book on morality after dumping his first wife for his much younger research assistant.

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  38. LAMary said on February 3, 2020 at 9:17 pm

    My ex spoke several languages well: French, Spanish, German, some Italian, Portuguese and Japanese. He was very proud of this. We went camping in Quebec province one summer. In a shop in a small, French speaking town in northern Quebec, he asked for candles. He ran through several words for candles and got blank stares. I said, “bougies,” a word I learned from an Ikea box of candles, and the shop owner handed me a box of candles.

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  39. Brian stouder said on February 3, 2020 at 10:58 pm

    Here’s a complete non-sequitur, which will keep me from inappropriate commentary about Uncle Rush’s impending reservation in hell: Have you noticed the inocuous little small print note at the end of the newest Mazda commercials? It says something like “Proudly built since 1920 in Hiroshima, Japan”. Made me look twice

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  40. alex said on February 3, 2020 at 11:22 pm

    Come to think of it, I remember “bougie” as a term I learned when writing a lampoon of scholarly articles about Victorian sexual quack medicine. This was in the 1980s for a literary journal of sorts. Bougies were radioactive cylindrical instruments inserted into the male urethra and female passageways to stimulate burning desires that were otherwise absent. Nineteenth-century Goop.

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  41. St Bitch said on February 4, 2020 at 1:02 am

    Hi Guys…I’ve been lurking…thought you might like a preview of the IA Chaos results. My precinct is D34 in Davenport.

    Raw Head Count:

    Bernie 56
    Biden 26
    Pete 25
    Liz Warren 19
    Yang 14
    Klobuchar 7
    Steyer 6
    Tulsi 6
    Undecided 6
    Booker 1
    Steyer 0
    Bloomberg 0

    Candidates needed 22 to be viable. I’m totally YangGang, but had to re-align, so I read the room and went to Bernie. My first choice was who inspires me, 2nd choice is who’s got the mojo.

    Final count:

    Bernie 65 2 delegates
    Pete 30 1 delegate
    Biden 26 1 delegate
    Warren 25 1 delegate

    I pestered the secretary for the numbers, because our chairman did not conduct our caucus properly, and I don’t expect the raw count to be conveyed accurately. My friend in a different precinct says Yang is viable (so he has at least 1 delegate), and that Bernie is as overwhelming in hers as he is in mine. Notice that if Bernie had one more count, he would’ve had 3 delegates from us.

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  42. St Bitch said on February 4, 2020 at 1:03 am

    Correction…my precinct D34 is in Davenport, IA – my hometown. It’s late!

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  43. Jakash said on February 4, 2020 at 2:05 am

    Of note: 2-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Gene Weingarten of the WaPo tweeted a link for Nancy’s exquisite Albom column to his 21.6 thousand followers today, calling it “a spectacularly vicious takedown.”

    https://twitter.com/geneweingarten/status/1224364066807959552

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  44. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 4, 2020 at 6:57 am

    Or, helpful career and life coaching advice.

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  45. Deborah said on February 4, 2020 at 7:36 am

    Well Sherri, you were certainly right about how dumb caucuses are. What a shit show.

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  46. Suzanne said on February 4, 2020 at 8:14 am

    Any of us who have been through a corporate wide system “upgrade” know exactly what is happening in Iowa. I don’t think I have been through one yet that wasn’t touted as the greatest thing ever and then there are glitches after glitches.
    And if the training for the Iowa app was like most businesses train for an upgrade, well, then it was probably a couple of online videos that move too quickly and leave out steps (like exactly where on the screen is the button you need to click) leaving the user bewildered.

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  47. Sherri said on February 4, 2020 at 11:37 am

    This is far worse than any corporate wide upgrade. Corporate wide upgrades are tested out in small groups first, and corporations have IT departments who do nothing but deal with that sort of thing.

    My experience with state parties is that they have little staff, and what staff they have turns over constantly, and none of them are IT experts. The local parties are run by volunteers, all of whom are passionate, not always about the same things, of varying degrees of organizational competence.

    I also have some experience with using the NGP VAN app, the canvassing app Dems use. It works, and it’s definitely easier than the old way we used to have to organize canvassing, but it’s still often confusing and non intuitive.

    Rolling out a new app on a high profile event where it has to work out of the gate is a recipe for disaster.

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  48. Scout said on February 4, 2020 at 11:46 am

    The Iowa shitshow showed that the whole caucus system is archaic, outdated and unfair to many working people, the elderly, parents of small kids and the handicapped. It needs to go away. Iowa is very white, therefore unrepresentative of the country as a whole, so to have the candidates spending that level of campaign resources to try to look like a front runner outta that gate is silly. In one precinct a tie was settled with a coin toss. REALLY? That is not democracy, ffs. https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/news/elections/presidential/caucus/2020/02/03/iowa-caucus-amy-klobuchar-bests-elizabeth-warren-one-site-via-coin-toss/4652075002/

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  49. Sherri said on February 4, 2020 at 11:57 am

    The coin toss isn’t unique to the Iowa caucuses. I remember a seat in the Virginia legislature being settled by a coin toss several years ago. You do need some means of resolving ties, which will happen, and a coin toss is not unreasonable.

    However, ties are much more likely to come into play when you restrict the number of voters like a caucus does. That’s the problem, not the coin toss.

    I just read that the PINs for logging into the reporting app were *printed on the worksheet for reporting the results*. Of course, those worksheets were photographed and shared all over social media. Just one of many ways in which this whole process is a election security disaster.

    I just hope Iowa shit the bed badly enough to get rid of its first status, caucuses, and delusions of voting by app all in one fell swoop.

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  50. Scout said on February 4, 2020 at 12:01 pm

    “I just hope Iowa shit the bed badly enough to get rid of its first status, caucuses, and delusions of voting by app all in one fell swoop.” Sherri @49 said what I was trying to say, only much more succinctly!

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  51. Dorothy said on February 4, 2020 at 12:06 pm

    Well I already knew I’d hit it off with LAMary if we ever get to meet in person. And now I’m declaring, after reading her comment @38, I claim the seat beside her if we ever have a roundtable/retreat weekend/happy hour gathering of the NN.C commenters in the future.

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  52. Sherri said on February 4, 2020 at 12:20 pm

    Vote by mail, no stamp required, ballot must be postmarked by Election Day. No, you don’t get immediate results, but voting is easy. Washington and Oregon have the highest voter turnout numbers in the country.

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  53. Julie Robinson said on February 4, 2020 at 12:29 pm

    If it isn’t bad enough, I’m now seeing reports that Pete Buttigieg’s campaign helped pay to have the app developed. I haven’t been able to track down the accuracy of the claim, but it’s off in conspiracy land now. Oy veh.

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  54. Sherri said on February 4, 2020 at 12:37 pm

    Caucuses are, from purely a process point a view, a shitshow, because they are run by amateurs. Primaries are run by elections staff, often not enough, but professionals who run elections multiple times a year. Caucuses are run by volunteers who do this every 4 years, and it sort of limps along as long as not too many people are involved and they all know each other because you don’t need process when you don’t have many people and everybody knows each other. Caucuses don’t scale.

    I know the people who ran the legislative district caucus that took 8 hours 4 years ago. Most of them are actually quite competent people. They just didn’t have any support or the tools or the money they needed to hold a caucus for several hundred people in one legislative district but two Congressional districts. None of them had any experience with trying to do something like that with that many people.

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  55. Sherri said on February 4, 2020 at 1:03 pm

    This, on voting by computer: https://xkcd.com/2030/

    (Also applies to fully autonomous vehicles, btw).

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  56. Deborah said on February 4, 2020 at 1:09 pm

    The thing that kills me is that this election could not be more critical. How could the campaigns let this happen? I suppose they can’t look like they’re interfering for advantage, but still. It sounds like there will be no more caucusing and Iowa needs to butt out in the future, at least there’s that. If I were a candidate, I’d be livid, but I’d have to act like it’s no big deal so I wouldn’t offend solid Midwesterners who mean well. It reminds me of when I was a church goer and things were done during services that were half assed like banners and music and mediocre sermons. Everyone was supposed to just go along with it because the people who were doing it meant well. I’m just rambling now, don’t mind me.

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  57. St Bitch said on February 4, 2020 at 3:28 pm

    Come on, you guys…I’ve known the Iowa caucuses are due for extinction since I moved back to Davenport to take care of my mother (with dementia). 2016 was my first caucus, a packed toss-up between Clinton and Sanders…well-run and lively. Yesterday’s caucus in the new precinct I moved to, after Mom died, was mos def an exposure of the many residual flaws of an antiquated process. And yet I’m glad I’ve gotten to participate in old-school grass-roots democracy that was designed for a different era in this state’s history.

    It soon became clear that our chairman was confused about the new rules and didn’t conduct the caucus properly. However, the finally tally and delegate allocation was valid, although I don’t expect the initial raw head count will be reported accurately (due to chairman error).

    The raw vote coverage is important to me because I wasn’t expecting my man Yang to be viable, but did anticipate we’d have a decent showing. That proved to be the case. (I was thrilled to find out my best friend’s caucus in a nearby precinct was able to assign Yang a delegate).

    Once the candidate that inspired me was out of the running, I read the room, looking for that elusive ‘electability’ factor. Even though I did some phone banking for Elizabeth Warren last fall (and really like her field organizers), she was initially non-viable…just squeaking by. Same with Biden, who wasn’t on my wish list anyway. Buttigieg was viable but not my cup of tea. No…all the oxygen and mojo in the room was swirling around the Bernie camp; so I (and most of my YangGang) jumped on the proverbial bandwagon.

    The tech crash-and-burn death knell of the Iowa Caucuses is not a tragedy. But to disdain and dismiss those of us who have engaged, informed ourselves, and exercised our civil rights by utilizing the only mechanism available to us, as solid well-meaning dumb-asses, is a shame.

    We had historic record turnout for the Midterms, and while my congressional district’s seat was already held by a liberal-leaning Democrat; two other districts flipped to Democrat congressWOMEN. The 4th northwest rural corner district elected nasty Steve King to his 10th term, I believe, although the race was surprising close. We are also hopeful we can push Joni Ernst out of the Senate next November.

    I haven’t lived here most of my adult life, and wasn’t around for the 2008 caucuses. But I know the state where I was born and raised; and was astonished enough by Obama’s success here to believe is heralded his rise to the presidency.

    Once the results do come out, they will be valid…and they will have something to say about the upcoming trajectory of the election.

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  58. Deborah said on February 4, 2020 at 3:45 pm

    So good to hear from you St. B and thanks for the insider perspective, I needed that. I wondered if you still lived in Iowa.

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  59. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on February 4, 2020 at 4:00 pm

    Test to scale.

    Iowa forgot that rule, or never heard it.

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  60. St Bitch said on February 4, 2020 at 4:02 pm

    Sorry for the redundancy in my posts @ 41, 42 and 57. I really don’t have dementia…yet…but it’s been so long since I’ve contributed here that I’ve lost awareness of protocols. By the time I went to bed in the wee hours, it didn’t look like my post(s) had made the cut, so I thought I’d reframe and put out my on-the-ground feedback again…realizing that this is my go-to online social media platform, when I want to join in a larger conversation while avoiding the twitterverse “reckless festivals of hatred”.

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  61. St Bitch said on February 4, 2020 at 4:19 pm

    I contemplated relocation to the Southwest, Deborah…explored beautiful New Mexico, including Taos (with unfulfilled intentions to swing by your Abique), as well as parts of Arizona (falling deeply in love with the exquisite Canyon de Chelly).

    While I never thought I would stay here after Mom died, the many elements that lured me into sticking around have been life-affirming.

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  62. Sherri said on February 4, 2020 at 4:49 pm

    St.B, I certainly don’t mean to imply that that you and the other Iowans are dumbasses. Caucuses just aren’t a process that can scale appropriately. The app nonsense is a lot of noise that doesn’t actually impact the actual results, as I understand it, given that the results were tallied on paper so that there is a record of everything. The confusion over the new rules, on the other hand, does impact things, and is a consequence of how caucuses don’t scale.

    As I’ve seen pointed out by urban planning types I follow on Twitter, many of the problems with caucuses are also present in many of the public input processes in local governments. Show up at a certain time and place and be harangued by your neighbors.

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  63. JodiP said on February 4, 2020 at 5:16 pm

    Julie, both Biden and Buttigieg gave $ to Shadow per WaPo. I’m not sure what that means at this point. More to come, I’m sure.

    Meanwhile, have you all been aware that Trump has expanded his travel ban?https://www.washingtonpost.com/immigration/trump-expands-long-standing-immigration-ban-to-include-six-more-countries-most-from-africa/2020/01/31/413e93ec-443e-11ea-aa6a-083d01b3ed18_story.html

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  64. Deborah said on February 4, 2020 at 5:20 pm

    It’s been a cold, snowy boring day in Santa Fe, stuck inside. The parking lot is a catastrophe, we swept and shoveled earlier, while it was still snowing to try to ameliorate the build up. Not good for my back or LB’s hip. We stopped that exercise in futility after about 45 minutes. We have fire going now so it’s not all bad.

    St. B, if you were in Taos you were only 60 miles away from Abiquiu. The first time I was ever in the town of Taos, thirty some years ago, I thought it was super tacky, full of T-shirt shop and gee-gaw souvenir stores, but now I love it. Not that it has changed much, but that all weirdly just adds to its charm, and you can’t beat the surrounding landscape.

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  65. Kim said on February 4, 2020 at 5:49 pm

    Sherri is correct about the Virginia legislature race that was decided by a coin toss. Democrat Shelly Simonds entered the race less than three months before Election Day because the candidate who ran unopposed in the primary dropped out for unknown personal reasons (inside scoop: he’s an idiot). The Republican incumbent was seen as very vulnerable, though probably superior to the idiot.
    Anywho, Shelly (who was on the local school board in a city of 180k) runs a great, smart race and comes up 10 votes short. There’s a recount and she’s up by one. The GOP challenges and a ballot that was marked for both candidates, then had Shelly’s name crossed out, is found legit by a three-judge panel. Shelly goes to court, the spoiled-ish ballot is affirmed as counting for the incumbent, so it’s a tie. The tie is broken by a draw, which goes to the incumbent.
    However, Shelly returns in 2019 and crushes the incumbent 58% to 40%. Triumph worth waiting for, people.

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  66. St Bitch said on February 4, 2020 at 6:11 pm

    No worries, Sherri – “Caucuses don’t scale” is the best, most concise diagnosis I’ve run across.

    Furthermore, I wholeheartedly agree (with the Bloomberg apparatus) that the enormous amount of time and money spent on this (non-representative) state is a losing strategy when we’re up against an incumbent who is a superfreak glutton for campaign trail adoration with a bottomless war chest.

    What I would like to dispel is what seems to be a widely-held fallacy that the Iowan body electorate is somehow clinging to a sense of prestige and importance from our traditional status in the Primary firmament, fanned to frenzied flames by the media. My experience is that, other than the amazing access to presidential hopefuls, the prolonged attention is a curse to most of us…an ordeal…a gauntlet run by candidates and constituents at the same time.

    I’m looking forward to the change this debacle has sure to effectively wrought.

    Deborah – I knew Abique was close, and it was calling calling to me; but there was snow and time constraints, so I missed out.

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  67. Deborah said on February 4, 2020 at 7:26 pm

    I for one will not be watching the State of the Union tonight, because I’d probably end up with a broken TV after throwing a boot at it. I’ll catch up with the low points on my iPad or phone in the wee morning hours (when I can’t sleep from worrying about the messes in the world right now), but I might end up throwing those devices out the window (into the snow). So if you don’t hear from me tomorrow, it will be because I have no devices left to communicate on and I am in despair.

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  68. Suzanne said on February 4, 2020 at 8:27 pm

    I don’t plan to watch the speech either. I know what it will be. Sniff, Sniff, greatest economy in the world, sniff, sniff, exonerated, sniff, sniff, pro-life, Jesus, sniff, sniff, Democrats are traitors, sniff, sniff, gloat.
    And tomorrow, becuase he read a speech without going completely off the rails, all the news media, from the NYTimes to Breitbart, will pronounce that NOW he’s finally presidential, having been through the fire of impeachment and come out cleansed.

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  69. diane said on February 4, 2020 at 8:58 pm

    I also will not be watching the speech tonight.
    Caucuses are a shit show. They are not representative of a meaningful portion of the electorate in their state. People can’t go (work, childcare) or don’t want to give up an evening of their life and deal with multiple rounds of voting run by confused volunteers.
    The actual “caucus math” has been an issue in the past here in Colorado and, God help us, the state party has promised an app to do the math. Of course, the caucus is really meaningless here anyway this year because we are having a primary for the presidential race but then caucusing a week later for other races. Colorado just couldn’t just rip the bandaid off and is peeling it off in slow painful stages instead.

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  70. LAMary said on February 4, 2020 at 9:17 pm

    Ugh. Don’t watch it. I have it on and I want to throw stuff at the television.

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