Thursday, November 26, 2009

Pumpkin News

I learned something this morning when I was shopping for pumpkin pie stuff to take to my daughter's apartment. The guy at Albertson's told me I was really lucky to have found a can of pumpkin at all. He said that Libby's informed them that their pumpkin crop this year was ruined. The farms where they get their pumpkins got too much rain, and all the pumpkins sat too long in too much water and turned moldy. The canned pumpkin on the shelf is all there's going to be, so if you can find some and you want pie for Christmas, buy your cans now.

That's why I picked up an extra can of pumpkin for me. Just in case.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Comments on Sarah Palin

I went to Costco today to get some creamer, and as always I stopped at the movie and book tables just to see what they had. This is the end of the book table where the most popular books go.

Michael Chrichton's posthumous book release and Sarah Palin's Going Rogue. Only, they're completely out of Palin's book.

I have never seen an empty spot on Costco's book table. Ever. And I go there for creamer a lot. Needless to say, I didn't buy her book today.

But I did see a thought-provoking column tonight in American Thinker by Robin of Berkeley, who describes her journey into long-time feminism and then back out again just a couple years ago.

What finally woke me up were the utterances of "b[*]tch," "witch," and "monster" toward Hillary Clinton and her supporters early last year. I was shocked into reality: the trash-talk wasn't coming from conservatives, but from male and female liberals.

I finally beheld what my eyes had refused to see: that leftists are Mr. and Ms. Misogyny. Neither the males nor the females care a whit about women.

Then along came Sarah, and the attacks became particularly heinous. And I realized something even more chilling about the Left. Leftists not only sacrifice and disrespect women, but it's far worse: many are perpetuators.

The Left's behavior towards Palin is not politics as usual. By their laser-focus on her body and her sexuality, leftists are defiling her.

They are wilding her. And they do this with the full knowledge and complicity of the White House.

The Left has declared war on Palin because she threatens their existence. Liberals need women dependent and scared so that women, like blacks, will vote Democrat.

A strong, self-sufficient woman, Palin eschews liberal protection. Drop her off in the Alaskan bush and she'll survive just fine, thank you very much. Palin doesn't need or want anything from liberals -- not hate crimes legislation that coddles her, and not abortion, which she abhors.

Palin is a woman of deep and abiding faith. She takes no marching orders from messiah-like wannabes like Obama.

In the wilding of Sarah Palin, the Left shows its true colors. Rather than sheild the vulnerable, leftists will mow down any man, woman, or child who gets in their way. Instead of a movement of hope and change, it is a cauldron of hate.

That "cauldron" is not for your run-of-the-mill Democrats who think they're still voting for FDR or JFK. It's for the true believers, the Hard Left, the ones who marinate themselves in their special poisonous brew of venom they reserve for Sarah Palin.

Good thing Palin keeps a steady supply of optimism as her antivenom against them. It's just too bad that Costco ran out of their supply before I got there.

Bible Verse for President Obama

I got this from my friend (and roommate) the cardiac nurse.

Psalm 109:8 "May his days be few; may another take his place of leadership."

May this be the description of Obama's presidency. I'm starting to believe that even Slow Joe Biden would be an improvement.

Monday, November 23, 2009


I work at a health clinic that serves a lot of Spanish-speaking patients, so naturally we have a lot of Spanish-speaking workers on the clinic side of the place. Over on the administrative side, we have quite a few as well. It's a good thing to be bilingual, and I might become that if I ever spend much time in France, but unless I learn some Spanish grammar it's not going to happen for me in that language.

As a non-Spanish speaker (beyond the basics of Tourist-Spanish: Una cerveza mas, por favor), I get a kick out of my visits to the breakroom. The conversations--not just the people--are bilingual:

"Spanish, spanish, spanish... text messaging. Spanish, spanish... 'Who is this?' I mean, spanish, spanish, spanish..."

It makes it tough to follow the conversation, but that's OK, because it's not my conversation. And when I say, "Hi," and, "Goodbye," in Russian to the lady Russian doctor, the Spanish speakers don't understand me.

The real aftermath to these bilingual experiences is that I start thinking in French a bit. I've discovered that my brain has two language centers, one for English and another one for all the other languages together. When I move into the foreign language part of my brain to try to decipher some of the other people's conversations, I tend to stay there. Not on purpose, really. It's more like going out of town and then you find someplace in that town to eat a meal, and when you eventually get back home, you return to your normal meal routine. Well, French takes up the majority of the space in the foreign section of my brain, so that's what shows up in my thoughts while I'm there.

Except for one time back when I was taking Spanish for Medical Professionals. I wanted to say, "I don't know," but I didn't know how to say it in Spanish. What came to mind wasn't French, though. I thought, "Nie wiem." That's Polish for "I don't know." Not very helpful for the class, but they taught me to say, "No se."

OK, then. No se what to say next, so I'll just say, "Do svidaniya," or, "Do widzenia," or, "Adios," or, "Au revoir..."

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Fat People's and Old People's Brains

Fat people have small brains. So says a study, published back in August, that I just stumbled across this weekend.

A new study finds obese people have 8 percent less brain tissue than normal-weight individuals. Their brains look 16 years older than the brains of lean individuals, researchers said today.

Those classified as overweight have 4 percent less brain tissue and their brains appear to have aged prematurely by 8 years.

The results, based on brain scans of 94 people in their 70s, represent "severe brain degeneration," said Paul Thompson, senior author of the study and a UCLA professor of neurology.

Obese people had lost brain tissue in the frontal and temporal lobes, areas of the brain critical for planning and memory, and in the anterior cingulate gyrus (attention and executive functions), hippocampus (long-term memory) and basal ganglia (movement), the researchers said in a statement today. Overweight people showed brain loss in the basal ganglia, the corona radiata, white matter comprised of axons, and the parietal lobe (sensory lobe).

Be smart. Don't get fat.

On the elderly front, LiveScience reported Friday on two studies that show benefits to older people surfing the internet.

[A] recent study by the Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies, a non-profit think-tank in Washington, DC, indicates that spending time online cuts the incidence of depression among senior citizens by at least 20 percent. The results were based on surveys of 7,000 people age 55 and older who were retired and not working, but not living in nursing homes.

"Increased Internet access and use by senior citizens enables them to connect with sources of social support when face-to-face interaction becomes more difficult," said study co-author Sherry G. Ford, a professor at the University of Montevallo in Montevallo, Alabama. Hence, they are less susceptible to depression.

Another recent study found that first-time use of the Internet by older adults enhanced brain function and cognition.

There is more to seniors' resistance to surfing the web than sheer crotchetiness, other research shows.

Aging often involves decreased memory, attention, cognitive speed, visual acuity, and fine motor control — the same capacities needed to use a computer. So it's no surprise that senior citizens typically take twice as long to learn digital skills, and are more prone to errors when they do get online, says Neil Charness of Florida State University.

[Researchers] suggest more computer-based brain fitness games for the elderly, since they can slow or even reverse age-related declines in perception and cognition, research shows. However, there is as yet little evidence these games can boost the user's overall quality of life.

The brain is an amazing thing. A big and sharp one is best.

Friday, November 13, 2009

"Cold Cash" Jefferson Gets 13 Years

Yes, Virginia, there is some justice in America.

Michelle Malkin has the story today.

Justice is served. The race hustlers will bray and moan, but disgraced Democrat Rep. William “Cold Cash” Jefferson had it coming. Thirteen years in prison for what the judge in the case called “the most extensive and pervasive pattern of corruption in the history of Congress.”

It's been a long time coming. May he rot in prison every last day of those thirteen years.

Khalid Sheik Mohammed to be Tried in NYC (Updated)

The outrages from the Obama Administration just keep on coming.

Michelle Malkin has the story this morning.

It’s Friday. The president is flying off to Asia. Congress is not in session. Perfect time to drop a bombshell on the American people:

The Obama administration is bringing 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed to New York City for a civilian trial.

No, it’s not a joke.

Malkin includes an e-mail sent out to the 9/11 victims, as well as this response that one of them sent back:

We have an announcement as well: we will fight with every remaining breath in our bodies both their bringing KSM and the rest of the 9/11 conspirators to federal courtrooms within walking distance of where they slaughtered our loved ones. And whomever finds Manhattan’s federal courthouse near Ground Zero a “sentimental favorite” for the 9/11 trials is a damn fool and they ALL ought to be fired. Pass that message on, far, wide, and up and down the chain-of-command.

You can petition President Obama here.

Here's how Michelle Malkin concludes:

If this White House thought Tea Party activists were an “angry mob,” wait until they see the backlash from 9/11 family members and their supporters nationwide. We’re not going to sit down and shut up about the reckless, security-undermining Obama 9/10 agenda and conflict-of-interest-ridden AG Eric Holder.

Call them out.

And check out that last link to our Attorney General's conflict of interest. Strong words are called for, so I'd better go and say my swear words in private...


David Horowitz at FrontPage Magazine today called this "the worst decision by a U.S. President in history.

The administration is justifying its decisions on the grounds that because the 9/11 attackers targeted civilians they should be tried as civilians. This makes no sense unless you are a Democrat who believes that the “holy war” that Islamic jihadists have formally declared on us is no different from the acts of isolated individuals who have decided to break the law. This is the approach to the war on terror that John Kerry championed in 2004. Now that Americans have had the poor judgment — the suicidally poor judgment — to make a leftist their president, this is the strategy our nation is set to pursue.

The decision to try the jihadists in a civilian court is also a decision which will divulge America’s security secrets to the enemy since civilian courts afford defendants the right of discovery. It is also a propaganda gift to Islamic murderers who will turn the courtroom into a media circus to promote their hatred against the Great Satan — a hatred shared by their apologists at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the pro-Castro Center for Constitutional Rights who have pioneered the campaign against Guantanamo and whose influence in the Obama Administration is pervasive.

This is insane. Or else it's treason. Obama is selling our national security down the river for the sake of pleasing his far-left base. It's starting to sound like impeachment might be in order...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Seeing Green

Sometimes at work when I'm sitting at my desk, I turn my head to look at the computer, and I get a glimpse of green on the keyboard or on the monitor. It's strange. It's intermittent. And I've had trouble discovering the cause.

I started wondering if maybe there was something wrong with my vision. Maybe some retinal affliction that starts small and at the periphery of the field of view and then progresses into a visual condition too horrible to name. Because that's what my mind does to me: It runs off to Worst Case Scenario Land, and the worst can be pretty bad.

Today, though, I found the culprit. On one of the papers I have on the paper-holder stand that secretaries (excuse me, "Admins") use, sticking out to the left, is a hot pink Post-It flag. When I set papers on the stand to type from, I don't even notice the flag, but it notices me and lets me know with its tiny, bright-green ghost that colors my keyboard as I work.

My vision is fine, thank goodness. Except for that presbyopia condition that makes me need my reading glasses, but that's another story altogether.

Christina on Parenting

Beautifully, wonderfully said.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

November Calendar Photos

My how time slips away! It's November already, and yesterday at Target they were putting out the Christmas stuff. Something is getting lost in the shuffle.

But not here. Here at SkyePuppy we have calendar photos. For November. Not for Christmas.

The family's calendar has one of my favorite pictures from the Golden Spike National Monument, which you may have seen when my mom and I visited there on our trip. If you find yourself in Northern Utah, it's well worth the detour to see it.

And this month's picture in my patterns calender isn't really a pattern, but I needed something to make sure I had enough photos for a whole calendar.

And so, there we are. Only one more month left in the calendar.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Another Reason Socialized Medicine is a Bad Idea

Power Line's John Hinderaker has this post Friday on the UK's medical system (emphasis mine):

In the United Kingdom, Parliament will take up a proposal to give National Health Service patients the right to seek private health care if they have been kept waiting for an appointment with a specialist for more than four months. Cancer patients, in particular, have evidently been removing themselves from the queue the hard way.

But the problem isn't only with specialized forms of treatment. The London Times quotes Jennifer Dixon of the Nuffield Trust:

"It would not only give patients enforceable health care entitlements but it would also prevent managers and clinicians from controlling waiting times as a way of limiting demand and saving money," she said. "In the past requirements to make financial savings often resulted in hospitals stopping routine surgery for a couple of months before the end of the financial year."

What a system! It beggars belief that Barack Obama and Democratic leaders in Congress want to reproduce the fiasco of socialized medicine here in the U.S.

Yes, John, it beggars belief. But Barack Obama and Demcratic leaders in Congress really do want to reproduce this fiasco. More power and control for them. Less for the rest of us.

But what are the chances that hospitals will stop offering routine surgery for the nation's elites? Will Nancy Pelosi be told to wait until the new fiscal year before she can get the hip replacement she might need after her bill takes effect? Will John Kerry have to wait for another Botox shot? Or will that only apply to us riff-raff? Just asking...

I heard from someone who has started reading Pelosi's 1,990-page medical-takeover bill that it includes such pressing health care issues as requiring nutrition labeling on the front of all vending machines. After that, no doubt they'll start telling vending machine owners what they can and cannot sell. And then they'll start telling you what you can and cannot eat. It's all for your health, of course.

Fervent Prayer Needed

Baby Christopher, who is eight months old, is the son of my church's previous youth minister, who left this past spring to start a new church. Christopher was having breathing trouble a month or so ago, and the doctors diagnosed him with pneumonia, prescribing the proper treatment.

The pneumonia got worse, so his parents took him to the hospital, where they discovered he has stomach cancer. It's stage 4 and has metastasized to his liver and lungs. The doctors say it's inoperable and he's going to need chemo or radiation therapy. But they have to wait until he recovers from the flu before they can start treatment.

Please pray for a miracle. And for God's grace for his parents and two big sisters.