Blueberries and blues.

I’ve missed going to the market the last couple of weeks, but I went Saturday, and man, is it ever on. Pre-tomatoes, pre-peaches, but the greens are greenin’, the sugar snaps snappin’, and of course the blueberries and cherries are in. I couldn’t decide what kind of pie I wanted this week, so I got both. In trying to preserve my weight loss, I will generally make a whole pie but take half to my office. However, we hit that poor thing like a tackling dummy; I might have to do a backup pie tonight for the co-workers.

Mmmm, backup pie. Blueberry backup pie. Yummers.


Tonight, I’m thinking pizza on the grill.

In between there was a bike ride, something I’m doing less of. Not for any particular reason, only that I’m trying not to get bored, so I’m juggling boxing, swimming, yoga and weights in the mix, and there just isn’t as much time for the bike. But I got out there on Sunday. Stopped and listened to five minutes of a sermon outside a church (with organ stings!), passed a couple splitting a joint on a park bench, observed a man sitting on his porch with a sign at the curb reading, “Barber on deck, 8am-8pm.” Just another Sunday noontime in Detroit.

Oh, and we saw a movie — “The Wolfpack,” now on iTunes and in theaters. Recommended, especially if you liked “Crumb,” as it basically hits the same theme. Which is? That art saves, and sometimes transgressive art saves the most. A review, by David Edelstein.

It’s bummer day in bloggage, but all of it good reading:

First, the most infuriating, a WashPost look at Tunica, Miss., an early gambling adoptee that somehow managed to squander a few hundred million in proceeds to local governments and still leave its people as poor and screwed-over as any in the U.S. How? By leaving the usual suspects in control of the purse, and what did they do?

What went wrong in Tunica is a matter of perspective. For many African Americans — and the county’s current officials — it was a story of a largely white political leadership that did not grasp the depths of poverty facing many black residents and did not choose to use the casino revenues that flowed into the county in an equitable way. So instead of funding skills training and providing programs for the vulnerable, they poured money into a riverfront wedding hall, an Olympic-size indoor swimming pool and a golf course designed by a former PGA Tour pro — all while implementing a massive tax cut that primarily benefited the wealthy.

Tax cuts. How bad could taxes have possibly been in a largely rural county known for its extreme (56 percent) poverty rate? I wonder if somewhere in the next world, Ronald Reagan is being roasted over a fire of dollar bills. He can give up his place on the spit when Grover Norquist joins him.

Moving on. This story is a heller to read, about how Matthew Teague’s wife died of cancer and his best friend helped him through it — for two years. I can tell you that it made me think we need better options to help people, and help the people who help them, through the last days of their lives. I know I would have called Dr. Kevorkian well before I reached about the midpoint in Nicole’s story.

If you can’t stand that, how about a DOG dying? Dooce.

Finally, a nice bit of essayin’ on something I feel I was the very last to learn: “Looking for Mr. Goodbar,” the great fear novel of my young single life, was based on a real murder, of a woman with a similar name as the main character in the book, and not too many changes. The victim taught deaf children in real life, which explains why Diane Keaton’s character did in the movie adaptation, a change from the book I found jarring. Some things slide right past you; this was one of mine.

So now the week begins. I’m hoping to see half my street paved by the end of it. We’ll see.

Posted at 12:14 am in Same ol' same ol' | 81 Comments

The trench out front.

In addition to all the usual post-graduation, pre-college confusion going on hereabouts now, this is our street these days:


Our street was in desperate need of resurfacing; it hadn’t been done, as near as anyone can tell, since it was built in 1947. We passed a road bond for $10 million a year or so ago, and ours was among the first streets on the priority list, so yay! We get a new street! Then they came to do the work, and the asphalt came up, and then they dug one side down to the Indian burial-ground level, and then the gas lines were a problem and then the rains came. We already lost one park-strip tree. The guy from the gas company rang the doorbell and said, “I have good news. You’re going to get more sunshine in your yard. Because we’re taking down that maple. Its roots are right over a break in the gas line.” Well, we never liked it that much anyway, fewer leaves to rake and no gas explosions = big plus.

Last night, I heard someone knocking around in the bathroom at 2 a.m. It was Kate, coming in, elated, from seeing the Rolling Stones at Comerica Park. My first question: How was the show? Answer: Amazing. My second: Where did you park the car? Two blocks away, because that’s what we do when the road is nearly unnavigable. Then I went back to bed.

I’ll be relieved when all this is over.


Doesn’t this sound like a fun read?

You don’t need to be a speechwriter to realize that the phrase “I won’t begin in any particular spot” is a wretched way to start a public address. Yet those were the opening words of one of the more remarkable political spectacles in recent years: Mark Sanford’s rambling and teary news conference of June 24, 2009, in which South Carolina’s then-governor confessed that rather than hiking the Appalachian Trail, he’d been hooking up with his Argentine mistress.

In the crowd that afternoon at the statehouse rotunda in Columbia, S.C., was the man responsible for crafting Sanford’s speeches. People still ask Barton Swaim, “Did you write that speech?” He can’t even answer. “I just chuckle miserably,” he explains.

No, Swaim didn’t write that speech, but now he has authored something just as revealing and unusual: a political memoir that traffics in neither score-settling nor self-importance but that shares, in spare, delightful prose, what the author saw and learned. “The Speechwriter” feels like “Veep” meets “All the King’s Men” — an entertaining and engrossing book not just about the absurdities of working in the press shop of a Southern governor but also about the meaning of words in public life.

Read the review. It sounds hilarious:

He learned the boss’s tics. Sanford liked to have three points in a speech, never two. Never. “I’m not getting out there to talk about two stupid points,” the governor said when presented with a pair of rebuttals to a bill. “I need three points, first, second, third. Got that?” He loved referring to an amorphous “larger notion” in his remarks. Larger than what? It didn’t matter. “When we drafted a release or a press statement and weren’t sure if he would approve it, someone would say, ‘Stick a “larger notion” in there and it should be fine.’ ” The governor would often deploy an “indeed” when trying to rescue a trite phrase, as in “we’re indeed mortgaging our children’s future.” Also, Sanford always looked for chances to mention Rosa Parks in a speech. He just really wanted to do that.

I always thought it might be fun to be a speechwriter. Obama’s speechwriter, maybe. Sanford’s? Eh…

A good profile of the Awl, a website I find myself paying more attention to lately. This passage hit me:

In 2003, Gawker’s Nick Denton hired Sicha to run Fleshbot, the company’s now-abandoned porn site, then Gawker itself. Meanwhile, Balk was in advertising and writing a culture blog on the side; he landed at Gawker a few years later. Sicha left for The Observer after a year, then returned briefly in 2007. The style that he developed at Gawker, conversational with bursts of enthusiasm and ironic swerves, exerted a deep influence on the voice of the early web.

“That style became internet parlance,” says Andrew Womack of The Morning News, where Sicha freelanced while at Gawker. “You almost can’t think of a bigger effect. I can’t look at anyone type an exclamation point without thinking of Choire’s first stint at Gawker. It wasn’t snarky; it was honest and had this fuck-it-all attitude I think we’ve all had.”

Voice is one of those things I find most intriguing about writing. It’s the voodoo magic, hard to teach, sometimes hard to even describe. I wasn’t enough of a fan of early Gawker to describe Sicha’s voice with any authority, but now that I think of it, voice is one of those things that drives me most insane about Mitch Albom — that plodding, early-newspaper, listen-to-me-for-I-know-all voice that hasn’t changed since he first dipped his quill into an ink pot. Some day, when I have the time and inclination, I’ll do an explication de texte on a sample and try to show you what I mean.

But for now, it’s getting on towards Friday, and I’m-a gonna turn in. Happy weekend to all of you.

Posted at 12:29 am in Media, Same ol' same ol' | 67 Comments

One great lunch.

Well, thank y’all for the kind comments. I’m not going away, but I might take a few days off from time to time. I’m just feeling the need for the well to refill a little. But I will probably be here, compulsively, until kingdom come or, y’know, the alternative.

Today I was reading a story, a fairly straightforward news story, that referred to so-and-so’s “passing.” Um, OK. I prefer “died,” myself, but that’s the alternative I’m talking about.

Let’s not talk about that.

Lunch in Ann Arbor with my editor and a source. The source picked the restaurant. Very interesting menu. Short, simple, Asian-y but not. I got roasted cauliflower because I was feeling like I should eat my vegetables, and would you look at this plate of vegan loveliness?


I thought $14 was a bit steep for a couple bucks’ worth of in-season vegetables, but whoever assembled that plate is an artist. The colors, the fragrance, the taste — all exquisite. In addition to the main ingredient, there’s broccolini, roasted carrots, a little white onion stewed to the consistency of butter with some curried coconut sauce. And a few raisins scattered about. Yum.

Nothing like a good meal to improve your day. My editor kept sneering because he hates cauliflower. He got some chicken schnitzel thing, but I say I got the better bargain.

Dinner tonight was skirt steak on the grill, rice and now we’re watching “When We Were Kings” on the big screen via YouTube. Love summer.

One thing about being tied up most of the day in driving and lunching and more driving? I missed the panic over the stock exchange and whatever else the world was on about today. I was just thinking…cauliflower. Yeahhhh.

Now Kate is at the Stones concert and so are a few of my friends, and I’m enjoying it via social media. That’s the way to enjoy a Stones concert, if you ask me. All the fun, none of the traffic.

A little bloggage, then?

Donald Trump is the monster the GOP created:

One big Republican donor this week floated to the Associated Press the idea of having candidates boycott debates if the tycoon is onstage. Jeb Bush, Lindsey Graham and other candidates have lined up to say, as Rick Perry put it, that “Donald Trump does not represent the Republican Party.”

But Trump has merely held up a mirror to the Republican Party. The man, long experience has shown, believes in nothing other than himself. He has, conveniently, selected the precise basket of issues that Republicans want to hear — or at least a significant proportion of Republican primary voters. He may be saying things more colorfully than others when he talks about Mexico sending rapists across the border, but his views show that, far from being an outlier, he is hitting all the erogenous zones of the GOP electorate.

Anti-immigrant? Against Common Core education standards? For repealing Obamacare? Against gay marriage? Antiabortion? Anti-tax? Anti-China? Virulent in questioning President Obama’s legitimacy? Check, check, check, check, check, check, check and check.

Again from the WashPost, an interesting piece, pegged to the Jared-Subway story, about our misconceptions about pedophiles:

The public typically maintains a highly stereotypical and largely inaccurate view of pedophiles, defined as adults or teens 16 and up who are sexually stimulated by pre-pubescent children (typically 11 and under). We imagine pedophiles as creepy men with shifty eyes, stubble and a trench coat. We think they lurk around schools and playgrounds, waiting to snatch children. We think of these men as despicable lowlifes whom we can spot when we meet them, which is why news of sex crimes against children are invariably met with disbelief. “Stunned” parents and community members say the same thing: “He never seemed like that type of person.” In my three decades working with many men who sexually violate children and teens, I’ve never met one person who fit “that type.”

Women and heroin, a growing romance. Alas.

Good Thursday, all.

Posted at 12:07 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' | 41 Comments

I was so much older then.

I think everything you need to know about my 40th high school reunion last weekend can be summed up in this scene from its final moments, when I was invited to judge the quality of my oldest friend’s boob job with a friendly squeeze.

Also, this: The boob job was a restoration following a double mastectomy, which itself followed a second bout of the big C in a decade. Because of the previous treatment, the restoration was no simple matter, requiring skin stretchers and all sorts of gruesome-sounding shit. But my friend, Cindy, and her husband Mark, are amazingly upbeat about it all. I think the reason I was invited to handle the goods was because, she said, they didn’t really feel like breasts anymore, with all their sensitivity and tingliness, which I guess stands to reason.

Reader, I cannot deny it: I honked the horns. They felt fine.

“Now all we have to do is shop for nipples!” Mark reported. Evidently that’s the final step.

So that’s life in the late 50s, I guess: Boob jobs, but not for the typical reasons. Grandchildren. Older but wiser. There was a memorial video for the ones who are permanently off the mailing list, so to speak. One word: AIDS. A little more kindness all around. The head cheerleader, apparently the only member of the class with a child younger than mine, explained the circumstances of his debut — 40s, no man on the horizon, sperm bank. A guy I’d always assumed was a drug casualty was finally revealed as an obvious psychiatric case. The funny pot dealers were there, still funny, still probably holding. (I didn’t ask.) At least one pill refused to wear the event T-shirt because the theme was “Forty Shades of Gray” and wearing that on your chest would be counter to God’s law. If he’d said, “Because God disapproves of lousy fiction,” I could get behind that, but I don’t think that’s what he meant.

My class reunites every five years, which always struck me as way too often. It was also a group of nearly 800 souls, which is way too big. You’re lucky to have known a quarter of them, and if 10 percent of them show up at a reunion, you’re lucky. I went to the five, 10, 15, 20 and 25-year events, and said after the last one that I was done forever. So did Cindy; she said that after battling cancer she was in no mood to waste time with vague acquaintances. But this year they roped her onto the committee, and she roped me into going.

Another thing that happened as I was making my way to the door, after the boob squeeze: I was drafted to work on the next committee. There’s a price for everything, I guess.

And that was most of my holiday weekend. How was yours? I’m writing this a few hours before leaving for a backyard barbecue. I was kind of thinking I’d see “Magic Mike XXL” today, but give it a few more days and another all-day rain will roll in, and that’ll be much better weather for it. Barbecue while you can, because you can’t do that via Netflix.

Not much bloggage today, but there’s this:

BASTROP, Texas — The office of the Bastrop County Republican Party is in an old lumber mill on Main Street, with peeling brown paint and a sign out front that captures the party’s feelings about the Obama administration: “WISE UP AMERICA!”

Inside, county Chairman Albert Ellison pulled out a yellow legal pad on which he had written page after page of reasons why many Texans distrust President Obama, including the fact that, “in the minds of some, he was raised by communists and mentored by terrorists.”

So it should come as no surprise, Ellison said, that as the U.S. military prepares to launch one of the largest training exercises in history later this month, many Bastrop residents might suspect a secret Obama plot to spy on them, confiscate their guns and ultimately establish martial law in one of America’s proudly free conservative states.

I wouldn’t live in Texas for all the money in the world.

Also this, Neil Sternberg’s valedictory for the open-outcry system at the Chicago Board of Trade, which I’m glad I got to see before it went away, because it was something to see.

And finally this, Frank Bruni’s backhand to the Kennedy spawn spreading vaccine alarmism:

If you had told me a while back that I’d someday dread, dodge and elect not to return phone calls from a prominent member of the Kennedy dynasty, I would have said you were nuts.

Then Robert Kennedy Jr. started reaching out.

Not just reaching out, mind you, but volunteering to educate me. To illuminate me. That was his tone of voice, somewhat pitying and vaguely patronizing, the one time we talked at length, after he’d left messages and before he left more.

Midsummer starts now.

Posted at 12:25 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' | 40 Comments

Wonder woman.

Well, here’s a headline you don’t see every day: Woman gives birth, fights off bees, starts wildfire in Northern California.

And yes, it’s exactly as delightful as you’d wish, although I’ll admit that the situation it describes couldn’t have been pleasant to endure. Still:

The bees wanted the placenta, she said with a chuckle.

Sort of gives new meaning to the phrase “mother and baby are doing fine.” They are, it’s just…it took some doing.

So, how was your day? Mine was eh. Half a day in Ann Arbor, lunch at a coney island, which is always restaurant choice No. 58 on a list of 60. (Nos. 59 and 60? Buffalo Wild Wings and Hardee’s.) But it was a group, and I was outvoted. I wanted bibimbap from the Korean place two doors down, but it was closed. I’m a late convert to bibimbap, and I’m glad I lived long enough to discover it, and now I have some catching up to do. Had a gyro, which I immediately regretted, even as I ate every delicious bite. I think gyro meat is one of those protein sources it’s best not to think too hard about. Fortunately, I only have one about once in a blue moon.

It’s been a cool summer so far, so much so that slipping into the heated pool at 6:45 a.m. today was a relief from the morning air. I bought dark goggles for those outdoor backstroke lengths staring up at the sun, but didn’t need them today — overcast. It’s what we do here in Michigan half the year, you’d think we could get a little break in the sunny season, but nooooooo. But I did my damn laps. I’m a fairly terrible swimmer, but my slow, plodding style is better than sleeping another hour. I puffed through a mile last Friday; it took 40 minutes.

I hope that would please the First Lady, who invited a bunch of Girl Scouts to have a campout on the White House lawn last night as part of the Let’s Move program. It looks like it went well:

Did I ever tell you my best camping story? Probably. I’ll tell it again: On Alan’s and my first camping trip as a couple, we…well, we overpacked. But hey, no problem — we were car camping, so it’s just a matter of squeezing it all in. We went up to the Au Sable River over Memorial Day weekend, and it was crowded in the National Forest campground, but we took an extra day off at the end of the weekend, and by Monday night, it was as quiet and peaceful as you want the forest to be — no canoes on the river, no rednecks blasting Lynyrd Skynyrd around the campfire, nothing. On Tuesday, we carried all our crap back to the car, which was a distance from the site, around a bend in the path and entirely out of sight of the campsite and the river. As I picked up the cooler on the final trip, there were but two beers left, still cold in the melting ice. I took them out and put them on the picnic table and said, “Let’s load this stuff, come back, drink these last two Budweisers and hit the road.” Alan said it sounded like a plan, and we humped the last load to the car.

When we came back three minutes later, there were two wet rings where the beers had been. I looked up and down the river. Nothing. I looked up and down the path running alongside the river. Nothing. I listened for any sound other than the wind in the trees. Nothing. Someone must have come along, seen two ice-cold beers sitting on a picnic table with no one else in sight, looked up at the sky, whispered “thank you, God” and made off with them.

I hope, somewhere in Michigan that weekend, someone told a different version of that story.

OK, so the bloggage, then:

I hope Caitlyn Jenner is happy with how she looks now, but man, those are some positively Seinfeldian man-hands, and I agree with Tom & Lorenzo — she should go up a size.

Roy takes on the First Things (“Opus Dei stroke book”) symposium on same-sex marriage with a lot more humor and insight than I ever could muster.

Wednesday already? How the hell did that happen?

Posted at 12:30 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' | 36 Comments


Yeesh, did I feel like crap this afternoon. Someone must have rubbed gravel in my contact lenses, or maybe it’s just allergies. I think I’m going to start speed-dating Alan’s antihistamine array and try to figure something that works, or it’s going to be a difficult summer, eye-wise.

On the other hand, I boxed at 6 a.m. today. The older I get, the more of a morning person I am. I’m perfectly happy riding my bike to the gym at 5:45 and hitting a heavy bag for half an hour. Just don’t expect coherence at 2 p.m.

An enormous storm threatened all day, and I watched it march relentlessly across Wisconsin, Lake Michigan and the lower peninsula. Words like derecho were in the forecast, which is a Spanish term meaning “charge your phone.” I believe it’s a straight-line wind, very concentrated. When Fort Wayne got hit by one a couple years ago, thousands were without power for days. So I came home, charged the phone, charged the laptop and…nothing happened. I mean, a sprinkle, followed by sunshine. The fearsome clouds punished Lansing, but not us.

So, then. Quickly, because I’m headed to bed:

It’s not over for the stars and bars, but when you lose Walmart, well…

And you know what? I don’t have much more. Think I’ll rub my eyes and hit the hay.

Posted at 12:48 am in Same ol' same ol' | 48 Comments

Hostess with the leastest.

This month is a whirl of graduation parties. We won’t be having one for Kate until August, and I can tell you right now, guests will not be finding anything like this on the tables:


I thought they were salt and pepper shakers, but on closer inspection found they were bubbles. The party was lovely, but so Pinterest-y I shook in my flip-flops. I just don’t have the gene that allows for such self-expression. My idea was for a non-catered backyard thing (but with food, meaning I’m the cook), maybe a tent but maybe not. Tables yes, bubbles no, balloons no. My big idea was to have everybody who’s a musician bring their instrument, and we’d have a hootenanny jam when the sun went down.

I get the idea that’s as ridiculous as expecting a room full of 6-year-olds to amuse themselves at a birthday party, rather than hiring a clown or makeover artist or whatever.


Next week we have another grad party — in Fort Wayne — and then that’s it for a while. Speaking of which…um, Alex?

I hope all the Fathers had a good Day. Kate and Alan saw “Inside Out” and I made a strawberry-rhubarb pie. It’s a fairly complicated assembly process (I use Nick Malgieri’s recipe, from “How to Bake,” fyi), one of those that reminds you why this is a once-a-year pie. The weather was sticky, and although it was the first day of summer, I mostly stayed inside, because it was a day of rest, exercise-wise. But I got the laundry and a hell of a lot of cooking done, so it was hardly a lost cause.

It’s hard for me to start the week if the laundry isn’t done and the larder isn’t stocked. Funny how these little rituals of daily life sustain us. Reading in the comments about Brian Stouder’s grievances — his house flooded — makes my eyelids twitch. That is NEVER fun, even if you get a new kitchen out of it.


So what’s going on with Jeb!? It looks like he’s unloading his gun into his other foot:

“I stood on the side of Terri Schiavo,” Bush said at the Faith and Freedom conference. Bush rarely brings up the Schiavo case on the campaign trail but his brief mention of it was made to a religious, conservative audience receptive to his role in the case.

Thanks for the reminder. Because I might have forgotten, otherwise.

On Saturday night, while Alan and I watched “Nightcrawler” on Netflix (recommended), this happened in Detroit — a shooting at a large block party that left nine wounded and one dead. I expect it’ll be a Long Hot Summer OMG Black-on-Black Violence Chicago-Style dog whistle, and whaddaya know, here ya go.

Now that the inevitable Dylann Roof “manifesto” has surfaced, look for more dog whistling, because of course this had nothing to do with, y’know, the R-word.

Another week lurches off the starting line. Hope yours is good.

Posted at 12:30 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' | 49 Comments

Watching the river flow.

When I was invited to an all! day! meeting! yesterday — and by “invited,” I mean, “told to show up on time, appropriately dressed” — I wasn’t exactly thrilled. There’s been a lot of sitting in my schedule lately, and besides being terrible for the bum and lower back, it’s just boring.


Today’s meeting had a view:


So that helped a lot. And there was lunch, too. And the meeting wasn’t boring.

You know I bear no ill will toward Columbus, my hometown, but it does suffer from an acute lack of natural…anything. Like so many state capitals in the Midwest, it’s centrally located in a farm state, near no natural feature more interesting than its two muddy rivers. So I appreciate the blue straits, and Lake St. Clair, and the freighters that pass by during shipping season.

Much news happened while we were confined to the second floor of Bayview Yacht Club. Donald Trump is running for president, and from the photographic evidence, he’s stopped tinting his hair with Tang breakfast drink (as Dave Barry once observed about Strom Thurmond).

Let the jocularity begin, because what else can we have over this? Roy has an early gloss of the reaction from the right.

While we’re in New York, a great slide show from a New York tabloid photographer, c. 1980 and thereabouts.

Remember the Michigan tea party legislator I wrote about a while back? He’s the subject of a hot rumor these days. And, strictly by coincidence, I had another legislator profile in Bridge this week. Of course, it’s getting a fraction of the commenting attention being paid to a story about a toilet.

Science you can use: Why you probably hate the sound of your own voice:

Your body is better at carrying low, rich tones than the air is. So when those two sources of sound get combined into one perception of your own voice, it sounds lower and richer. That’s why hearing the way your voice sounds without all the body vibes can be off-putting — it’s unfamiliar — or even unpleasant, because of the relative tinniness.

Of all the Rachel Dolezal takes, I like Kareem’s quite a lot:

See, I too have been living a lie. For the past 50 years I’ve been keeping up this public charade, pretending to be something I’m not. Finally, in the wake of so many recent personal revelations by prominent people, I’ve decided to come out with the truth.

I am not tall (#shortstuff).

Although I’ve been claiming to be 7’2” for many decades, the truth is that I’m 5’8”. And that’s when I first get out of bed in the morning.

Wednesday! Time to get crackin’ on the story I would have started yesterday if I hadn’t been staring at the river.

Posted at 12:30 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' | 41 Comments


In the world ruled by moi, everyone would be issued five exclamation points on January 1. You can use them all in one day, or use them judiciously throughout the year, but when you’re done you’re done until the following New Year’s Day.

You want to live in my world? Learn to use the exclamation point!

Oh, the things that occur to me when I’m making my way through a 58-slide PowerPoint.

And if you know I’m reading PowerPoints, you know it’s a real Monday kind of Monday.

Just one thing today: “Game of Thrones” is concluded for another year. Which one of the dozens of recaps do you need to read? Just Grantland’s.

Let’s try again tomorrow.

Posted at 12:30 am in Same ol' same ol' | 60 Comments

Done and gone.

So, first this happened:


…and then this happened:


…and just like that, high school is over. Thank heaven, because I was ready for it. Toward the end there, her high school got several bomb threats, nothing Columbine-like, just the usual freakout over some bathroom graffiti. I hasten to add I understand the freakout — you can’t ignore that stuff — but the day I received an email from the district with this Scooby Doo subject line — North solves mystery and keeps focus on teaching and learning — I just kind of mentally threw in the towel. Bring on a new set of irritations. Microaggressions, climbing tuition bills, all of it. P.S. The mystery wasn’t solved. The day after they nabbed the kid they thought was making the threats, a new one appeared. Oh, well. School’s out.

I still can’t believe the Vipers booked a show the night of graduation. I had paid $70 for a ticket to the all-night party, and she was going to go, dammit. I made arrangements for her to be let in after the admission window had closed (you can understand why they have to do these things; someone might bring in a bomb) and she came home at sunrise with the usual party favors, including a pair of green boxer shorts with “Kiss me I’m Irish” all over them. Boxer Short Bingo, I gathered.

Now I will take a one-year break from caring who the superintendent is, the status of the teacher contract, and of course whether the district’s wifi will ever be brought up to snuff. I will commence caring again in June 2016. For now, I have no more fucks to give, as the kids say.

So, a little bit o’ bloggage as we start the week:

I found this story fascinating. A softball player at MSU is claiming an assistant coach threw two pitches at her head after she was overheard saying unflattering things about the program to a reporter, off the record. The coaches could be looking at assault charges, I expect. Laura Lippman has written several books with the theme that women’s worst enemies are often other women. I’ll say.

How Michigan is going to overturn its prevailing-wage law. Worth reading.

Honestly, I never expected a Bush — especially the smart one — to be this incompetent, but it’s just one thing after another with this guy. Or should I say, this guy!

The Rachel Dolezal case is simply a wonder to me. Someone on my Facebook feed wondered if this isn’t some sort of Munchausen’s syndrome. I wonder.

So let’s get the week underway, shall we?

Posted at 12:06 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' | 30 Comments