Monthly Archives: October 2008

In All Honesty….

I get upset when OTHER drivers talk on their cell phones.

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Fear and Loathing

I was just four years old in 1960, so I have no memories of that election. But some of my coworkers do. During breaktime this afternoon, they recalled the fear-mongering of the 1960 election.

  • That if JFK were elected, he’d be taking orders from the Pope.
  • That JFK will force everyone to use the Catholic Bible, including in Sunday school, and outlaw all other Bibles.

One coworker, while out at lunch (in historically racist Huntington), was asked by some guy at the gas station or bank or somewhere, “Are you ready to have a black man as president?”

John McCain, to his credit, has avoided the fear-mongering that trademarked the Karl Rove campaigns of 2000 and 2004. There has been plenty of negative campaigning (on both sides), but the fear-mongering (not to mention race-baiting) has come from people outside the official campaigns. That’s something we can applaud.

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In Favor of Redistribution

Let me say right here that I favor wealth redistribution. Sorry, John and Sarah.

I’m talking about downward redistribution. Under every Republican president since Reagan, and most noticeably under the current guy in the White House, wealth has been redistributed upward. The divide between the rich and poor has steadily increased in an audaciously unbiblical fashion. Under Republicans (of who I are one), the rich get richer (through sundry new tax breaks, plus the occasional 700 Billion Dollar Bailout), and the poor get poorer. Ya think Jesus would approve of that?

Isn’t upward redistribution a version of socialism, too?

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Saved by Vertigo

Unfortunately, things didn’t go as expected. I was 16 ounces into that horridly blekky Trilyte when my Miniere’s Disease came to the rescue with a strong vertigo attack. I, uh, expelled everything consumed thus far, and was out of commission for the next few hours, hugging the floor while the world revolved around me. Vertigo is better than Cedar Point.

I remain vaguely haunted by the taste of Trilyte, though I’m hoping the memory will fade as the years pass. I am now informed (thank you, Mom) that there are alternatives to Trilyte. So rather than drink a whole gallon of toxic waste, I could use alternatives involving just 4 oz of fluid intake, though the taste is considerably worse (toxic waste gone sour), and you supplement it with laxatives and enemas. Or something like that. I’ve been avoiding information overload, the TMI Syndrome, lest it bring on another visit from Cousin Vertigo.

The bottom line: no matter what route you go, prepping for a colonoscopy sucks.

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Bottoms Up


There it is, 4 litres of Trilyte. In a few minutes, I must begin drinking it, 8 ounces every 10-20 minutes, until it’s gone. I left out the flavor packs, because I was told they are very sweet and can cause nausea. A mistake? When I pour that first glass in a few minutes and take a sip, I’ll know the answer to that.

So, let the fun begin.

UPDATE: Okay, that wasn’t so bad. Not nearly as bad-tasting as I expected, though all things considered, I’d rather have Gatorade. Gagged a couple times at first. The key is to take baby sips. I got ambitious on the last mini-gulp and almost spit out the whole thing, but managed to hold it. Good for me.

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One Consequence of Turning 50

Last week I turned 52. So I’m two years past-due for one of the rites of AARPdom.

On Tuesday morning, I have the distinct pleasure of undergoing my first colonoscopy. Which means tomorrow is prep day. No food. Just liquids. Juice (no pulp), Gatorade, Jello, chicken broth. I can’t do the broth. Doesn’t appeal in the least. Then, around 5:00, I start drinking 4 liters of stuff which my body will try to get rid of ASAP. I understand that this is the really fun part.

So yes, I’m looking forward to starting another week.

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There Will be Blood

This morning I went to Family Practice to give some blood for a regular test. I hate giving blood, even the little bit they need for these tests. Makes me grow faint. I usually end up with my head between my legs, eyes blurry, feeling weak and very un-macho.

Which is what happened this morning. As predicted. Based on long experience.

I am such a wimp. Guys, in general, are wimps when it comes to this kind of thing.

Pam went with me, both to hold my hand and to give her own sample of blood. She went first, just pumping the stuff right out and watching while she did it. Then, as if no life-strength had been sucked from her, she stood up while I underwent my ordeal.

Girls can be so disgusting sometimes.

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Mark Cuban, Financial Guru

Mark Cuban, billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks, has been writing about financial issues quite a bit lately on his popular Blog Maverick. I just finished a really good piece about debt, especially credit card debt. Some unconventional advice that makes great sense.

“If it takes selling every stock, bond and whatever you have to pay off your debts, do it. If it means borrowing against your 401k and paying back yourself instead of the credit card or finance company, do it. It is a far better return than you will ever make putting that money elsewhere.”

That sounds drastic, but read his reasoning, and then argue about it.

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Rick Warren Interview

Real interesting interview with Rick Warren on the Christianity Today site, called “After the Aloha Shirts.”

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Post-Debate Thoughts

  • The breakout star: Joe the Plumber.
  • The big question: will Joe appear on the campaign trail beside McCain, or beside Obama? Because he’s gonna end up with one or the other.
  • These have been boring debates. Bush-Kerry, Bush-Gore, Clinton-Dole, Reagan-Anyone…far more interesting.
  • Bob Scheiffer was the best moderator.
  • They still avoided the “what programs will you need to cut in light of the financial crisis” question. Their answers are still: Yes, we can spend an extra trillion dollars, and you can still have the candy store. No need to cut or sacrifice, heaven forbid. We can still have it all.
  • Though, to his credit, Obama did say we’ve been living beyond our means and would need to make adjustments.
  • I didn’t see a winner in last night’s debate. Except for Joe the Plumber, of course.
  • If you go to, it’s a guy in Amarillo, Texas who suddenly owns a very valuable piece of cyber real estate. Free estimates! Call now!
  • McCain, the guy who doesn’t use a computer, thinks a sophisticated planetarium projector is just an overhead projector.
  • Thankfully, only one passing reference to “preconditions.”
  • Scheiffer did a good job of pressing them about negative campaigning. Both were unapologetic and, as they would both insist, “I cannot tell a lie.” On live national TV, we watched their noses grow.
  • Michael Sherer notes that McCain got under Obama’s skin several times. “If Obama’s job was to be unflappable, he found himself flapped at several points.”
  • I tracked down and listened to the original encounter with Joe the Plumber. Regardless of whether or not you agree with Obama, I was impressed with his knowledge about economic issues. Either that, or he’s real slick.
  • Said Michael Grunwald on the Swampland live-blog: “Mccain is gritting his teeth so hard they’re going to come out his chin.”
  • Karen Tumulty on the same: “Obama seemed cool and collected, while McCain’s grimaces were painful to watch.”
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