First weekend of summer.

These long summer evenings, I love them so. Not a stellar weekend, but one in which I put a big headache – our taxes – in the rear-view mirror. We had to pay less than I’d feared, so celebrated with a dinner out on a patio, at a restaurant two blocks away. Warm summer night, big crunchy salad – life could be worse.

Meanwhile, down came the statuary everywhere else. I have no official opinion about this. When I took that slavery walk last summer, we stopped at the statue of Alexander Macomb, Revolutionary War general and slave holder. Honestly, I’d never even noticed him before; he was just another man in period dress, cast in bronze, for pigeons to poop on. This week, in an op-ed in the Freep, one of his descendants said it was time for him to come down. They could replace him with a sculpture of Malcolm X and after a week or three, I don’t think anyone would notice.

The question is, how do you move forward?

Then there was the ridiculousness in Tulsa, for which I don’t have many words. I’m so tired of this. It’s like being beaten by an abusive partner over and over, only the partner has shown to be a drunken, toothless ass. He can still hurt, but he’s fully revealed as the little man that he is. What a shameful time we’re living through.

Then there’s this:

President Trump and several staff members stood backstage and gazed at the empty Bank of Oklahoma Center in horror.

Mr. Trump and Vice President Mike Pence had canceled plans at the last minute to speak at an outdoor overflow rally that was almost entirely empty, despite claims of nearly one million people registering for tickets to attend the event in Tulsa, Okla., and the president’s false boast of never having an empty seat at one of his events.

The president, who had been warned aboard Air Force One that the crowds at the arena were smaller than expected, was stunned, and he yelled at aides backstage while looking at the endless rows of empty blue seats in the upper bowl of the stadium, according to four people familiar with what took place. Brad Parscale, the campaign manager who had put the event together, was not present.

Ha ha ha ha ha. Not a bad weekend after all.

Posted at 9:54 pm in Current events |

69 responses to “First weekend of summer.”

  1. Ann said on June 21, 2020 at 10:03 pm

    “Brad Parscale, the campaign manager who had put the event together, was not present.” Hmm, wonder if he was one of the ones who tested positive. My guess is that he may not be present at any future events, either.

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  2. Suzanne said on June 21, 2020 at 10:04 pm

    Just watched the Bolton interview. Almost nothing I didn’t already know and came away with the knowledge that Bolton is the jerk that I thought he was. Waste of an hour.

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  3. LAMary said on June 21, 2020 at 10:05 pm

    It was nice to see all those empty seats, the empty outdoor overflow area. I enjoyed trump’s reenactment of the ramp walk too. Especially the part about running the last ten feet. I saw there was an ad on the Tulsa Craig’s List for actors to fill seats and be enthusiastic at the rally. Pay was flat 250.00 plus trump merch to wear. I have to wonder how many of the 6200 who showed up were paid to be there.

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  4. jcburns said on June 21, 2020 at 10:30 pm

    I liked the (pretty sure facetious) plan from “some wag” on Twitter: remove all Confederate generals and their racist like from their pedestals, but leave their horses. We’d become this country of riderless horse statues.

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  5. LAMary said on June 21, 2020 at 11:23 pm

    A video, towards the end of the article.

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  6. Dexter Friend said on June 22, 2020 at 3:37 am

    I had a large crunchy salad also, from a restaurant takeout menu; we have had them many times before, so no big deal, except it was a big deal because I got urgently sick a little while later, then was OK. Scratch that place. It’s an easy ride to Lima St. Rita’s but after a few days I am getting a little tired from it, but I must return home each night because of Friendo and Pogo, of course. One visitor per day per patient, and no switching off,so her sister went Sunday and I stayed home, but am returning Monday, today. Now with Carla Lee having more and more medical issues, the kids want us to move closer to one of them, but the strain of moving does not appeal to me. And Florida, where the middle daughter lives, is way too Covid-ee. Las Vegas, where the oldest lives, is like way-fucked 6 ways to Sunday. I will never live there in that goddam furnace. And Columbus, Ohio , well…there is just not an attraction to me to live there. And I damn-sure can’t rent a U-Haul and move myself and all my shit, so I know what moving companies charge, and I don’t have a corporation picking up that giant tab. So right now, it’s just the kids tightening the stress screws down on me.
    I watched Fox because they televised Trump…”slow down the testing…too many bad results, PLEASE!” And I had never heard of “The Cupid’s Shuffle” before, as the protesters broke out dancing.

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  7. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 22, 2020 at 7:06 am

    Just to be *that* reader, Nancy – I’m guessing it was one of his descendants? But if it was an ancestor, I want to meet them!

    The neighborhood around the church is echoing nightly with fireworks; this blog from Boston offers an interesting sidelight to something that’s going on all around the country, apparently, or at least until the fireworks run out like toilet paper:

    I’m white knuckling my way to the end of my tenure here as pastor. Now that my last day is officially on notice, church member social media feed is filled with “All Lives Matter” and complaints about the injustice of canceling Aunt Jemima, passing around false tales of “who she really was” and bitterly bemoaning the demolition of statues of good men like Robert E. Lee.

    It’s a mixed odd feeling, because while I’ve known for years most of the congregation just can’t or won’t stop saying “colored” about Black people, unless I’m known to be in earshot (in a church building one can often be invisibly within earshot without meaning to be), I did not expect . . . this. Apparently my place as their pastor helped to modify some of their behavior, and they’ve heard enough sermons pushing back against white privilege and how sin intertwines with racism in overt and subtle ways, but once they know I’m going, they can’t even wait until I’m out the door to revert. There was a nasty incident after I attended a Black Lives Matter rally here in Newark (ironically, I spent most of the event standing at the back of the crowd talking to our police chief, who is retiring about the same day I am, and he’s four years younger), and I offered the board chair an earlier departure without expecting them to pay past that day if so desired . . . and was told in high dudgeon that I was expected to fulfill my contract’s* 60 day notice, but that it would help if I didn’t attend any more “controversial events.” She didn’t say “I order you not to” and honestly, if it gets worse, I’m not sure short of stopping my pay, how they could force me to preach two more weeks after my father’s funeral anyhow: but there are enough sweet souls and decent humble everyday Christians here that I want to finish my course without more open unpleasantness. It’s the culture of the congregation, intersecting with the dysfunctional governance structure of the church, which has put all of us in this position.

    But the open racism and Trumpism that broke out immediately upon my terminal date announcement has left me deeply demoralized. We’ve all got a long way to go, friends.

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    • nancy said on June 22, 2020 at 7:16 am

      D’oh! Fixed.

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  8. Dorothy said on June 22, 2020 at 7:36 am

    Dexter I’m sorry that you’re feeling so stressed lately. Maybe you should think about being totally honest with your kids and flat out tell them you can’t consider moving unless you get a heap of help with it. They might be able to rally some friends to pitch in and help – ask that they be masked when it’s moving day because of your wife’s health issues (and your ages, let’s be honest!). I think they’ll be glad to help you in any way since they are pushing you to be closer to them. I’m confident they would be sad if they knew you were stressing out so much about this issue. They love you and want to keep you close for that reason.

    And Jeff I’m really sorry that some of your parishioners are acting like that. My heart is so sad about that – all the words you’ve written and spoken to them over all these years and now it seems like they’ve absorbed little if anything of it. Maybe you can write a real rip-roaring final sermon to remind them of how God expects them to behave – even if they squirm in their seats and think ‘surely he doesn’t mean ME!’ – it’ll make you feel better to get it off your chest and into their ears and hearts. And I hope you do still continue to participate in whatever controversial events you damn well please. It’s a free country and they need to remember that. At this point do you really think they’re going to come around to your way of thinking? Hell no – but at least you’re standing up for your beliefs and signaling to them that you and only you are in control of whatever message you are delivering with your actions. And your heart and conscience will continue to be clear, and true to your vows as an ordained minister.

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  9. Peter said on June 22, 2020 at 8:47 am

    Jeff TMMO, I’m sorry about what you’re going through. And it makes me worried as well – if some members of your congregation are like that, can you imagine what their neighbors who don’t go to church anymore are thinking?

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  10. Julie Robinson said on June 22, 2020 at 8:57 am

    Dorothy speaks truth, Dexter. Neither of you are in shape to accomplish a move, so if your kids want it to happen they will have to make it happen. We spent two years of weekends driving to Illinois to pack up my mom’s house, and it was worth every moment.

    Jeff, I weep for you and pray for you. You need to immediately unfriend all those people and stop giving them any of your attention. Visit the sick, write your sermons, and focus on the rest of your life.

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  11. nancy said on June 22, 2020 at 8:59 am

    Jeff, just as there’s always a tweet, there’s always a NYT story. If you can’t open that, let me know and I’ll email it to you. Speaks to your current situation almost perfectly.

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  12. Suzanne said on June 22, 2020 at 9:05 am

    Jeff TMMO, I hear you. My church is exactly the same. We had only online services from before Easter until the good Governor said “Open up, churches! Let ‘er rip! You are our control group for infection spread, lucky you!” and my church did start having limited in person services. I haven’t gone back and I don’t really miss it. The church has some wonderful, decent people, most have no clue they are racist, which I can understand because it’s something you have to be mindful of, but most also have no interest in exploring that they are.
    Probably about 20 years ago, I was at a middle school basketball game, sitting next to our County Clerk whose son was in my son’s class. She won an award one year for being the finest County Clerk in the state. On the opposing team was the son of Purdue U’s former player turned extremely successful sports agent Eugene Parker. County Clerk turns to me and asks if I know if Parker is married to a colored woman because his son isn’t very dark. One old man, who was otherwise a great guy, used to comment frequently in Bible class that white people would soon be a minority because of all the immigrants.
    So, yeah. We have a long, long way to go.

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  13. Julie Robinson said on June 22, 2020 at 10:02 am

    That NYT story was depressing to read as a pastor’s mom. Sarah also has Trumpsters in her church, as well as black folk and gay folk, and she walks a very thin tightrope. She’s been attending protests as a pastor, wearing her clerical collar, pulling a wagon of water of water and offering masks. She’s also talking about it on Sunday morning and leading a book group studying How to be an Antiracist. It’s a lot, emotionally. A lot.

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  14. Sherri said on June 22, 2020 at 10:43 am

    I always shake my head at the people who say they keep politics out of church; it’s always there, if you’re not talking about it, it just means you’re not challenging the status quo.

    Reading that article, I’m also struck by the old guy who liked Trump because he was highlighting issues at a time we don’t speak the truth, but was unhappy with the pastor because he highlighted issues and spoke truths the old guy didn’t want to hear.

    The guy was also okay with the gay choir director, but not same sex marriage, in other words, those other people could be a part of his church and his world on his terms, as he decided it was okay.

    Who belongs? And who gets to decide? For church, it sure seems like it ought to be an easy question, but the people who have had de facto control over deciding aren’t happy about losing that power.

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  15. LAMary said on June 22, 2020 at 11:17 am

    The fireworks here are crazy. Every night from about 8 to 1. The thing is, they started before the protests. Not as many before the protests but enough to get people calling the cops.
    And it’s not pretty shoot in the sky type fireworks. It’s shake the house start a hillside on fire fireworks. I know other neighborhoods have the same problem here in the LA area.

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  16. Dave said on June 22, 2020 at 12:18 pm

    Jeff, that’s sad that those folks are unmasking themselves and reverting to their true selves, now that they know they are rid of you tickling their collective consciences. I wonder what kind of person will succeed you and how will he be treated when he can’t make the church grow? I say when because it appears that making a church such as yours grow in this era is a insurmountable task. I was looking for a phrase less trite but I couldn’t think of one. Actually, I find my words dismal and hope I don’t offend.

    Dexter, your children don’t live anywhere you want to live so what do you do? Everyone says, including me, that they should help you move but where, if you want no part of the Columbus area, nothing to do with the heat of Las Vegas, and I would join you in saying there’s no way I’d live in South Florida, where do you go? We talk about leaving Florida and moving closer to our children but where our son lives in the Northern Virginia suburbs is so expensive and our other choice is to move back to Indiana, which we would probably do because it would be close to two of three children and far more affordable. Our advancing age (I hate saying that) tells us that if we’re going to do it, we should get with it.

    OK, I’ve said enough, I could go on about the idiot in the Oval Office but others here do it far better than I.

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  17. Jakash said on June 22, 2020 at 12:24 pm

    Yeah, the fireworks thing is kinda wild. Gene Weingarten remarked about it in his chat last week, and we certainly have had plenty in the Chicago neighborhoods. Makes me glad we don’t have a dog.

    That’s sad, Jeff, and must be so disheartening.

    I very rarely dip into the right-wing whackosphere, but after reading about this Parscale guy, I looked at his Twitter Saturday night. The telling highlight for me was him retweeting this: a “Senior Advisor” to Hair Furor’s campaign ostensibly refuting the “FAKE NEWS” that “there wasn’t an outside audience at the Rally” by posting a photo of people milling around well before the event started. Transparently misleading, and easily called out by many comments, as well as photos of the “overflow” stage being disassembled. What got me about it was that this wasn’t some hat-wearing MAGA rando — it’s a Senior Advisor being retweeted by the fricking Campaign Manager. Just haplessly, pathetically grasping at straws — attacking alleged fake news, which was real, with their own “news”, which was actually fake. Aye-yi-yi!

    “The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.”

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  18. Jeff Borden said on June 22, 2020 at 1:16 pm

    While we are childless, once we passed the rubicon of 65-years-old, people began asking us when we would be retiring to a Sun Belt state like Florida or Arizona. . .particularly since my wife is a 3rd-generation Floridian. (Brandon, Fla., a suburb of Tampa, was carved from her grandfather’s orange groves.)

    While health issues may someday necessitate a move, at this point we plan to stay in Chicago. We’ve lived here for 31 years now and have enjoyed a pretty damned good life. The hotboxes of retirees –I’d rather be skinned alive than live in The Villages of Florida– hold zero allure. We have access to world-class health care, world-class cultural institutions, cuisines from every corner of the globe and we’re just two miles from the inland sea of Lake Michigan.

    Jeff TMMO, I’m not religious, but I feel for you. You are clearly a good, decent man. Perhaps your parishioners don’t deserve you.

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  19. Deborah said on June 22, 2020 at 5:41 pm

    Jeff tmmo, sorry to hear of your troubled last weeks of your ministry in your town in Ohio.

    We had a fun but exhausting weekend with my husband’s granddaughter and her little cousin with their other grandparents on our mesa in Abiquiu. It was stressful watching them driving the gigantic RV on our roads up to and on our property. My husband had an amazing horseback ride at the vast Ghost Ranch with his granddaughter, they ended up having a private tour on father’s day. The little 6 year old cousin was the sweetest little boy but only wanted to spend his time on his iPad indoors. If I had a chance as a kid to be on a 100 acres in a place like northern New Mexico, I would have been in heaven running around everywhere. We had picnics outside that involved a lot of trips back and forth from our mesa “point” where the fire pit is back to the cabin to lug food and such. I put miles and miles in, in 90º heat. We have a canopy to go over our table out there, it was very pleasant once everything was in place and grilled over the open fire, but lordy I was tired after it was over. The granddaughter’s other grandparents are salt of the earth people, as kind and helping as they come, but we certainly didn’t talk politics as they live in Orange County, CA.

    As I’m typing this we’re having the a fence on one side of the condo in Santa Fe property rebuilt and every time they pull a squeaky nail out of the wood it sends chills up my spine. But it will be so nice when it’s done.

    I have some future questions for you car people out there, we’re seriously looking into a new vehicle since our Jeep Patriot is needing repairs again. My husband and I are not car people and desperately need some advice. We want to upgrade for this next purchase so that this will be our last car purchase, hoping to make it last 15 years. We wanted our current Jeep to last 10 years but that’s doubtful, and that was wishful thinking anyway since we bought the cheapest thing we could find at the time. I’ll hold off on the SUV advice for a while since I don’t want to hijack this current nn.c post and comment thread and we have time (hopefully) to think about it.

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  20. LAMary said on June 22, 2020 at 6:47 pm

    I’m not a car person but I’ve got a few of them in close proximity. Jeeps suck. Especially Patriots. Subarus, Hondas, Toyotas are better. I don’t know anyone who has bought a Jeep in the last eight or so years who didn’t end up with a lemon.
    That’s just my opinion based on the opinions of the in house Brit, who worked in the automotive industry for thirty years, and my experience with Chrysler products.

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  21. David C said on June 22, 2020 at 7:21 pm

    Definitely stay far away from Chrysler products. GM, Ford and European cars are not much better. If you want an automatic transmission stay away from continuously variable transmissions which leaves out many Toyotas, Hondas and Subarus. If you want a manual transmission they’re all fine. Hyundai/Kia cars still use traditional automatics on most of their cars. Our last car was a Kia and our current is a Hyundai and they both served us well.

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  22. Colleen said on June 22, 2020 at 7:25 pm

    We love our Subarus. They have good longevity.

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  23. Dexter Friend said on June 22, 2020 at 7:56 pm

    Deborah, Dave , thanks for the guidance. I really don’t want to move anywhere; I like my VA Medical care in Ann Arbor and Toledo, and am used to living here, so right now I am focussed on getting my wife where she’s going next for knee rehab. Today as I was getting in the car for the drive to Lima, I called to see if all was OK, and was told to not come as she was getting a peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC) line today. So of course they postponed that, and I could have gone. It’s an intravenous drug line that goes near your heart. It can be dangerous.
    So the Kid-pop thing made me happy…Trump’s rally estimates have sunk to 6,200 last I heard. Right now Biden would beat him badly, but we know how repuggs can manipulate the vote, the crooked bastards.
    JeffMMO, best wishes on a smooth transition. I realize, I had to keep my political mouth taped shut when I returned to church in 1993 after years proclaiming I was an atheist. The pastor welcomed Blacks and Mexican-Americans into our flock to the not-so-welcoming elder/older assemblage. After a while, all the new folks left. “Colored people” is still used here in the 419, too. The people in this church absolutely hate gays. I quit too after I felt so isolated…these regular worshippers here are ALL Trumpers. And so it goes, as Linda Ellerbee used to say.

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  24. LAMary said on June 22, 2020 at 8:14 pm

    I know I’ve mentioned how bad LAPD was under Chief Gates. I heard an interview on one of the local NPR stations. The woman was talking about restructuring the police and she mentioned that between 1986 and 1992 there were over 2000 reports of excessive force and less than 300 of them were addressed. I don’t doubt it for a minute. When I moved here it seemed like there was at least one police shooting a week and when I’d mention that to my neighbors they didn’t find anything unusual about that.

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  25. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 22, 2020 at 8:44 pm

    Y’know, the church sign saying “Loaded Baked Potato Bar” really summed it up for me. I’d say thanks for the link, except for the tears, which are half for that pastor and half for my own warm bath of regret & recriminations. In that now I’m thinking I should have just gone all in and gotten fired a couple years ago, but I knew that would also unemploy the newly ordained female associate pastor here. Or so we justify half-measures to ourselves.

    I just thought I’d gotten them farther than it turns out I had, not that circumstances have helped much. That I have to put on God, who’s used to getting blamed for “Acts of…” whether from Wuhan or just fast moving cold fronts.

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  26. Dorothy said on June 22, 2020 at 8:50 pm

    I am very much NOT a car person but I’ve driven Chevies exclusively for at least 25 years and have no complaints. Currently have an 8 year old Equinox. We leased Blazers for awhile, then had a used Malibu that was fine, too. Hubs is a Silverado guy – has had multiple trucks and no duds among them (our son, too – currently has a GMC truck). Our daughter-in-law has had two consecutives Jeeps and has had no issues with them, either. And our daughter has a Subaru Crosstrek that she loves – it’s about 14 months old I think. Lemons, I believe, come in all varieties among vehicles. You survey 100 people, the answers will be all over the place. Our daughter did extensive research when she was car buying 14 months ago – drove us nuts with sharing her Excel spreadsheet and conversations with car salesmen. But she got what she wanted and is very happy with it.

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  27. Deborah said on June 22, 2020 at 9:35 pm

    Well, I didn’t want to hijack the thread but seems I’ve already done so. Lemme say we will have had our Jeep Patriot 8 years in October so it isn’t a lemon, would love to have it last for 10 years but it doesn’t seem like a possibility now. We are looking for something reliable (obviously) a hybrid or all out electric, sort of a high top, boxy back end so that we can get things in back there that are deep-ish vertically. We have had many rental cars that have tapered back ends, in regards to the height, they slope so that what you put in vertically doesn’t fit as well. We’d like it to be a smallish SUV, but with high undercarriage clearance for driving on a weedy mesa top. I love manuals over automatics but I realize that’s getting harder and harder to find and can live without it if I have to. Our goals are high energy efficiency, not huge, but roomy enough for carting things around, durable, doesn’t need fancy tech amenities on the interior. Is this a unicorn?

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  28. LAMary said on June 22, 2020 at 9:43 pm

    Deborah, I was judging Jeeps by the reliability reports I’ve read and the experience of my niece who had to replace her transmission after five years and gave up on the car a year later because the repairs it needed cost more than the car was worth. The quick look I just did online leads me to believe electric SUVs are not very common. Hybrid, yes.

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  29. Deborah said on June 22, 2020 at 9:58 pm

    I should also say, we’re willing to pay for quality and reliability, not like we did before. We’ve learned our lesson.

    Our current problem is supposedly a computer glitch, the engine light comes on but they say there’s no real engine problem, just the signal the computer is giving that there’s a problem. This happened a month or so ago and it cost us $900 and 2 days to fix, but we also got a 6 month warranty on the fix so this shouldn’t cost us anything, and it’s also supposed to cover the cost of a rental. But I don’t trust any of that. We’ll see.

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  30. alex said on June 22, 2020 at 10:12 pm

    Deborah, as a lover of manuals I am always on the lookout and there’s precious little left except for a few Honda and Hyundai models and no SUVs alas. Mazda, which was all about manual a few years ago and had it in SUVs, barely offers it in anything except the Miata and the hatchback version of the 3 series.

    Of course, you can get Jeeps with manual but they aren’t great for longevity. I’m seriously tempted by the new Jeep Gladiator pickup except that it’s so overpriced for something that won’t last as long as my Toyota pickup that’s now 15 years old with 250K miles and I’m about to replace the brakes for the very first time. Yes, you read that right.

    I can vouch for Hondas and Toyotas for longevity, low maintenance and seldom or never needing repairs of any sort.

    Jeff tmmo, although I’m not religious I certainly understand what Christianity is supposed to be about and one of the reasons I don’t partake in organized religion is that it’s full of people who don’t get it at all and never will. You’ve put in some hard years of service and good on you for trying. If it made a difference for even just a few people, it was worth it and God bless you. Some of the best teachers I’ve had felt the same way about the educational experience. They were there to serve the few who could be reached and their students’ lifelong gratitude was their greatest reward.

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  31. Sherri said on June 23, 2020 at 12:33 am

    I watched two very good documentaries this weekend. One is Coded Bias, about algorithms and data and the biases built in. I just happened to catch an opportunity to see it online, but presumably it will be more widely available soon.

    The other is Disclosure, in Netflix, which is very relevant to the discussions we’ve had on here regarding trans issues.

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  32. Julie Robinson said on June 23, 2020 at 12:49 am

    Deborah, Consumer Reports has never led us astray when it comes to evaluating cars’ reliability and even what’s likely to break down at approximately what age. You can even access them electronically for free through your library.

    In our experience you can’t go wrong with a Toyota or Honda, and Colleen is not the only extremely loyal Subaru owner I know. The company is very crunchy granola too, for a bonus.

    When we got my CRV six years ago no one was making hybrid SUVs but I think they are now. I’m hoping to talk my husband into one instead of the Tesla he’s been fantasizing about as a retirement car. Elon Musk has shown himself to not be a friend to The People.

    There are some real issues with electric car batteries too. We did a deep dive into it a few months ago when our daughter almost bought a used Nissan Leaf. I’ve forgotten all the details, but they don’t like heat, and every year they lose efficiency until they don’t go many miles without a charge. And it can be hard to find places to charge them, plus unless you are fine with only doing a trickle charge overnight, you have to install the special plug for fast charging at your house. I believe that was about 3K. It was all enough to make me say run away, run away. I’m a buzzkill!

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  33. LAMary said on June 23, 2020 at 1:14 am

    Teslas are on the bad reliability lists all over the place. Hyundais and Kias rank high and their small SUVs have square backs, not slanted ones. They also get decent gas mileage which Jeeps definitely do not. My son loves his Subaru. The only issues he’s had are related to him driving over some debris in the street and messing something up. Mechanically it’s great. It’s a 2009 he bought used. I don’t know if this is still the case, but all the geologists I know, and having lived in the same town as Colorado School of Mines for a few years, I know a lot of geologists, they all drive Toyota Landcruisers. High ground clearance is a big selling point.

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  34. Dexter Friend said on June 23, 2020 at 2:50 am

    In 1986 Ford released the Aerostar, and I rented one immediately for a trip to the Mackinac Bridge. I have loved minivans ever since, but as I have told here before, I have had many pickups and station wagons and big cars and mid-size sedans and tiny econo-cars. My last 5 or 6 vehicles have been minivans. I fold down the back seats so I can haul stuff…I can get two rollators in there easy-peasy. The last Chrysler minivans are great looking, but if I bought new, I’d likely get the Honda Odyssey. No vehicle except the ridiculous Smart Car was hated more than the minivan…”soccer mom car” was the most polite insult I had hurled at me, the others are now way too politically incorrect to list here. But then there’s this: I have been driving Carla Lee’s Chevy Impala because it gets nearly 140% of the mileage my van gets.
    Well, I wish I could fall asleep earlier…no matter how early or late I crash, I can’t get up before like 10:30 AM.

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  35. Connie said on June 23, 2020 at 6:15 am

    All Chevies here for the moment, older Cruze with hand controls, not as old Traverse.

    Our hot summer weekend included a picnic on the breezy patio at our daughters house and 14 quarts of local strawberries.

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  36. Connie said on June 23, 2020 at 6:23 am

    And I also watched free on HBO The Watchmen. Interesting, entertaining, and confusing.

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  37. Suzanne said on June 23, 2020 at 6:40 am

    VP My Pants must think he’s still governor

    “Vice President Pence and his wife, Karen Pence, voted by mail in Indiana earlier this year using the address of the Indiana governor’s mansion…”

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  38. Julie Robinson said on June 23, 2020 at 9:28 am

    Suzanne, I read that they don’t own a home in Indiana anymore. Either he hasn’t cashed in on the Trump grift train, or he’s not planning on coming back.

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  39. Suzanne said on June 23, 2020 at 10:20 am

    True, Julie. The thing is that my children live in different states but don’t own homes there, so by Pence logic, they could use my address and vote in Indiana. They haven’t lived there for years, but then, My Pants hasn’t lived at the address he used for years either!
    Dang. There’s the voter fraud the GOP has been talking about!

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  40. Peter said on June 23, 2020 at 10:24 am

    Deborah, I would research slightly used cars and have a few in mind, because used car prices are going to drop like a rock. Hertz is going to dump a lot their fleet and it’s going to impact the market.

    My son got a 2018 Toyota Camry three months ago – and the price of the car kept dropping while he was looking at it. I thought he had a great deal, but you can get a similar Camry for about 2000 less now

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  41. Heather said on June 23, 2020 at 10:25 am

    The only advice I have for Jeff tmmo is that you no doubt planted some seeds that will take a while to grow. There might be quiet members of your congregation who were too afraid to speak out. Perhaps some words from you or one of your sermons have lodged in someone’s brain and will eventually change their perspective. We don’t always get to see the effect we have on others. I hope you can take some comfort in that.

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  42. Jenine said on June 23, 2020 at 11:08 am

    My husband and I started watching The Expanse (on Amazon Prime and my library has the first three seasons) in May and fell in love. Space marines with amazing writing and cast. I don’t recognize hardly any of the actors and they’re all excellent. My friend said the special effects got better after the first season but I was blown away from the start. The stories are smart and include human groups fighting over resources and having a hard time communicating and negotiating instead of resorting to violence.

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  43. Jenine said on June 23, 2020 at 11:16 am

    @Jefftmmo: A beloved Episcopal bishop once told my church (former, I’ve wandered away) that the people in the congregation will break your heart. I wish I remembered more but the gist was that there are good times and there are hard times and we need to learn from failing one another. I’m sorry that your congregants are showing their littleness. These days the desire of white ppl to keep their own comfort front and center seems murderous.

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  44. jcburns said on June 23, 2020 at 11:38 am

    I like the optimism of this group and I too hope that Jeff “planted some seeds”…my somewhat more cynical reaction is that the state of Ohio (and the midwest) needs some weed control in addition to careful planting. Maybe that metaphor leads to trouble (wouldn’t be the first time for me), but I’m disturbed that, based on a video of a racist woman in Missouri yelling from the back of a pickup truck, “I will teach my grandchildren to hate you all” while brandishing a confederate flag. How do you weed that out?

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  45. Julie Robinson said on June 23, 2020 at 11:39 am

    Jenine, wonky space science fiction? My husband loves you for finding his next binge watch. My thanks too.

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  46. LAMary said on June 23, 2020 at 12:50 pm

    Used cars from rental companies are usually a good deal. I had a Ford Contour from Avis. It was nondescript and reliable for years.

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  47. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 23, 2020 at 12:51 pm

    Hoping that Roundup isn’t the solution to our weed control situation. But plucking garlic mustard plants one at a time sure can start to seem like wasted effort . . .

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  48. Deborah said on June 23, 2020 at 1:19 pm

    My husband’s granddaughter asked us what we thought of the Black Lives Matter movement this weekend when her other grandparents weren’t around. We went through a simple but lengthy explanation of our views, she listened intently and asked questions. In the end she said she had never heard it described in that way and said she agreed with us. Her father is probably fairly neutral but the other grandparents might be Trump supporters, we avoided talking politics except once when I mentioned. being safe on the rest of their drive they thought I was talking about protests when I was referring to the virus.

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  49. Scout said on June 23, 2020 at 1:30 pm

    Deborah, asking about cars with this group is always a good idea when you want useful info!

    Jeff(TMMO), as others have said, what you have put into that congregation wasn’t entirely in vain. Think “It’s a Wonderful Life”; you have no idea how your words and actions rippled through that community, but trust that they did. We are living in such volatile times it’s understandable to feel despair by the overtly racist and willfully ignorant. I hope that time and distance from this ending will eventually bring you peace.

    sHitler is having a hate rally in AZ today at a megachurch that claims they have an air filtration system that gets rid of covid. I just can’t even. As if we don’t have enough to deal with here with the thousands of new cases and rapidly filling to capacity hospitals.

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  50. Jeff Borden said on June 23, 2020 at 1:35 pm

    I bought my first Honda in 1978 after driving a Plymouth Satellite for four years after college. My desire for a front-wheel drive, manual transmission hatchback left me no choice but to turn Japanese. Ford had a German box called a Fiesta; Chrysler had boxy, Rabbit-like cars dubbed the Dodge Omni and the Plymouth Horizon; GM? I don’t even remember. Once I climbed into an Accord, it was all over. I’ve owned three Accords and two Acuras and all have delivered both dependability and a certain joy of driving Toyotas never gave me.

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  51. LAMary said on June 23, 2020 at 2:07 pm

    Jeff TMMO

    A recipe very similar to this killed the giant dandelion like things that kept growing next to my fence.

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  52. ROGirl said on June 23, 2020 at 2:11 pm

    I drove a Chevy Malibu for 12 years and loved it, but now I’m driving a Camry and am happy with it. I grew up with Chrysler products, wouldn’t own one today.

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  53. Deborah said on June 23, 2020 at 2:44 pm

    The God damned tourists from Texas are flooding into Santa Fe since they partially opened the hotels and restaurants here and of course THEY’RE NOT WEARING MASKS! So they’re probably bringing the virus into our city willy nilly. Getting here from Texas is an easy drive for them and I wish we could have road blocks on the border to keep them out. Grrrrrrr.

    Thanks for the car advice folks, keep it coming. Boxy SUV, reliable, high undercarriage clearance, hybrid or all electric, new not used, hope it will last 15 years, a manual transmission would be ideal but not a deal breaker if it’s not, that’s what we’re looking for.

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  54. Icarus said on June 23, 2020 at 2:59 pm

    a manual transmission would be ideal but not a deal breaker if it’s not, that’s what we’re looking for.

    I don’t understand the love for manual transmission in this day and age. I’m told technology has long rendered any benefits obsolete.

    I’ve only owned 3 cars in my life. A 1989 Mustang (automatic) which I paid for with a credit card in the early 1990s. A 1997 Mustang (automatic) in 2001 which took a little longer to pay off but once I did, I through those payments toward my student loan.

    and now a 2008 Honda Element bought in 2012 which is also paid off a long time ago. Next car probably needs to have good cargo carrying but I wouldn’t mind an electric car either if I’m only using it as a runabout for errands.

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  55. LAMary said on June 23, 2020 at 3:07 pm

    Googling electric SUVs 2020 shows lots of SUVs with sloped backs. Nothing boxy. The KIA comes closest to boxy.

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  56. Deborah said on June 23, 2020 at 3:21 pm

    Icarus, I’ve been driving stick shift cars since I was 14, that’s what I know, I’ve also heard they have better gas milage, maybe that’s changed and I’m open to that. It’s probably a psychological perception but a manual makes me feel I’m more in control of the car. Again, I’m open for change, since I probably don’t have a choice.

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  57. Sherri said on June 23, 2020 at 4:17 pm

    Personally, I wouldn’t go full-on electric in an SUV that I wanted to take up to your cabin in Abiquiu, because I wouldn’t expect to be able to charge it up there. So, a hybrid would be a safer bet. Honda/Acura make reliable vehicles, but their SUVs are not boxy. I love driving my Acura RDX, but it’s definitely sloped.

    Teslas are very expensive to repair.

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  58. Dexter Friend said on June 23, 2020 at 4:45 pm

    JeffB : I waited like 7 months for my 1977 Honda CVCC to arrive at Don Ayres Pontiac-Honda in Fort Wayne. I loved it at first, then the seats began unraveling, and then a big Buick obliterated it and sent my 10 month old daughter to the hospital (she recovered OK).
    I took that car to Boston and drove it all over, even in The Old North End. Then I and an old army pal took off for Cape Breton’s tip, Nova Scotia. I only had that car 17 months before the wreck…a night shift worker fell asleep and ran a light.

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  59. LAMary said on June 23, 2020 at 4:47 pm

    The in house Brit has a two year old VW Tiguan. The back is not sloped and no problems mechanically, although it’s only 2 years old so who knows. It’s a very nice vehicle. I don’t think the 2020s got great reviews. It’s also not particularly high off the ground. Higher than my Golf, but I wouldn’t consider it for off roading.

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  60. alex said on June 23, 2020 at 5:55 pm

    I don’t drive manuals for the mileage but because they enhance the driving experience, at least for me. And I hear these new CVT transmissions are boring as hell.

    The Honda Pilot is a boxy SUV and the Ridgeline pickup gives you a four-door cabin with an open bed and gets great reviews, so you may want to consider those, Deborah. But no stick available in any SUV these days except Jeep products.

    We’re probably going to part with our pampered Pontiac Solstice convertible because we never use it anymore. It’s a plaything more than a car and we could use another vehicle that provides some utility. I’ve been looking at Honda and Subaru models that still come with manual and will probably go for one of those. Love the latest Accord.

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  61. susan said on June 23, 2020 at 6:02 pm

    Deborah- I have a Subaru Forester, which I bought because it’s boxy. I was so used to driving my Toyota pickup for 30 years, that I wanted something kind of small pickup-like. I treat it like a truck. You can put a lot of stuff in it. Also, it’s reliable, has wonderful visibility, has 8.7″ clearance, has AWD. AND, it has a manual transmission. Just about everything I wanted, except it’s not a Toyota. Oh well. But, alas, Subaru stopped making the Forester with a stick; last year’s model was the last year. You can still get the Crosstrek with a stick, and their little sporty WRX, but those would not be what you’d want.

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  62. Deborah said on June 23, 2020 at 6:20 pm

    I’m looking into all of your car recommendations. This will be interesting.

    On another note late last night in Santa Fe, India Palace restaurant in the plaza area was trashed with white supremacist graffiti all over the place. They broke furniture, dishes, art on the walls, spray painted graffiti everywhere. It took the cops 3 hours to respond to a call. What the heck is happening here? There’s a Go-Fund-Me for $100,000 to repair the damages, lots of locals pitching in to help clean it up. I’ve never been to the restaurant but there’s a municipal parking lot next to it that we always use when going to places in the Plaza. This is just sickening.

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  63. LAMary said on June 23, 2020 at 6:48 pm

    White supremacists have always been around but trump validated them. Normalized racism, xenophobia, homophobia, every stupid despicable behavior. I can’t imagine what things will be like if he wins in November. The Nextdoor site, which usually deals mostly with lost pets or free firewood has a few nasty racists who jump into any topic. I’m astonished. This is crunchy granola land.

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  64. Deborah said on June 23, 2020 at 6:57 pm

    Actually the vandalism at the Indian restaurant happened Sunday night but the owners didn’t find out about it until they went in on Monday afternoon to get ready for Monday evening service. It’s owned by a family of Sikhs who have been very active in feeding the homeless and people in need. Wow, just disgusting.

    Then this afternoon there was a shooting on Canyon Rd, anyone who’s ever been to Santa Fe knows that Canyon Rd is/was a major art location, lots of galleries and restaurants (and tourists). Not much is known yet about the extent of the shooting. We heard lots and lots of sirens.

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  65. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 23, 2020 at 7:54 pm

    India Palace? Someone who saw a Sikh going in the kitchen door and assumed “oh, Ay-Rabs!” So sad.

    LAMary, is that recipe good for muting irritating people? That was the Roundup reference . . . weeding out the bad underbrush when the invasives are choking out the seed you meant to plant.

    Thanks, all; maturity is supposed to be about the understanding that you plant for the shade of a day long after you’re gone. I’ve always had that hope, but the deadnettle and loosestrife and garlic mustard sure seem to be overwhelming the rosemary and thyme.

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  66. LAMary said on June 23, 2020 at 8:25 pm

    Here, I was thinking you were taking your mind off the parishioner issues by pulling weeds. I don’t think it would mute people. It could make them scream in pain if it got in their eyes.

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  67. Deborah said on June 23, 2020 at 9:15 pm

    I have a friend who lives in Chicago and has a summer place in Empire, MI with a fabulous garden. She was a dean of architecture at a prestigious school and she gave me some great advice about gardening. When you’re shoveling manure onto your garden, imagine that you’re flinging it at the people who are giving you grief about how you’re fulfilling your job obligations, and are total assholes. I use her technique for other things besides flinging manure. It can be cleansing to your psyche.

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  68. Andrea said on June 23, 2020 at 9:26 pm

    @Jeff TMMO, I agree with others who say that you do not know what seeds you planted. Here’s hoping that it will be a bumper crop.

    @Deborah, we are famous for our long-lived cars here. Our family’s current fleet is a 1997 Ford Explorer (the 19-year-old drives this), a 2003 Subaru Forester, manual transmission (the 21-year-old drives this), and a 2010 Toyota Prius (my husband drives this.) I am fortunate to get a company car (still!) and am on my second leased Subaru Crosstrek, which has both manual and automatic transmission in the same car (I can toggle back and forth between them.) We had another Subaru for 11 years before getting the Prius. So I heartily endorse the Subaru.

    We just returned from a long weekend in Wisconsin with friends. We got a coronavirus test before heading out. It was quick and easy and free. Got results within 48 hours. (We were all negative.) Almost no one was wearing masks in WI except us and our friends, so we basically isolated at their cabin or went for hikes or bike rides by ourselves. No eating out or visiting tourist sites or bars, etc. Just quiet nights on the little lake by their cabin, drinking a little too much and playing cards. It was delightful.

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