Friday, December 31, 2010

Waking Up (Updated)

You know in the movie, Casablanca, early on when they're in Rick's club and the Nazis start singing their Nazi German song and then the French people stand up and sing La Marseillaise and the camera focuses on the pretty young French woman... that scene, right?

Well, this morning when my alarm went off, I got up and smacked the snooze button and crawled back in bed. And while I was snoozing, I was vaguely aware of my roommate (who has the day off) getting up, and then I heard the sound of a lot of water running, like she had turned on the shower, which is what I do as soon as I get up after I'm done hitting the snooze button. Well, that water noise got me jolted out of bed one minute before the alarm went off again, and I found my roomie in the kitchen with the faucet running and not in the bathroom starting a shower, thank goodness. I didn't want to be late for work.

But La Marseillaise was running through my head, and I had these flickers of images of the pretty young French woman singing, and I don't know why, except I must have been dreaming about the movie when the water noise woke me up, only I don't know why I'd be dreaming that because last night we'd been discussing which movie we want to see tonight, and Casablanca was definitely not on the list.

I'm not sure what it means. Maybe I have a battle to fight in the coming year, a war for freedom. Perhaps victory begins with a song...


Here's the clip from Casablanca.

I leave it to you to decide how the symbolism of the two groups of singers applies to today's world.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

O Holy Night

This is my favorite Christmas song. I blogged about it four years ago. It was written by a Frenchman, and the literal-ish translation from the French goes this way:

Christian midnight
It is the solemn hour
When the God-Man
Has descended unto us
To erase original sin
And by His Father stop corruption

The entire world trembles with hope
For this night that gives it a Savior

People to your knees
Await your Deliverance

Noel, Noel
Here is your Redeemer
Noel, Noel
Here is your Redeemer

You can listen to it in English. My daughter's friend who loves Josh Groban (and actually met him!), this is for you:

And for all of you, may your Christmas be blessedly filled with time spent with loved ones.

P.S. Happy 24th birthday to my baby girl!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Who's On First

A little viewing fun for Christmas Eve (HT: Power Line)...


Sunday, December 19, 2010

I've Been Shopping

If I could work my will, every fool who goes about with "Happy Holidays" on his lips should be boiled with his own pudding and buried with a stake of holly through his heart!

My apologies to Charles Dickens.

So what holiday could they possibly be wishing me to be happy for? Let's see...

Hannukah is over.

And all the Muslim holidays are over until February.

I suppose there's Kwanzaa, but one look at my pasty-white face would tell them that one's not very likely.

So that leaves the federal holiday that falls on December 25th every year, which somewhere along the way became a Really Bad Word that we must not name in public for fear of offending people who get the day off, even if they don't celebrate it. What's that one called?


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Weekly Republican Radio Message

It doesn't make much sense to me that they have a video for a radio address, but I guess that's one of the reasons I'm not a mover and shaker in the political world.

Krisi Noem is the newly elected Representative from South Dakota (one of those sparsely populated states that have more Senators than Representatives), and she was picked to give the weekly radio address for the GOP. I like what she had to say.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Quote of the Day

"There is something wrong in a government where they who do the most have the least. There is something wrong when honesty wears a rag, and rascality a robe; when the loving, the tender, eat a crust, while the infamous sit at banquets."

--Robert G. Ingersoll

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

White House Wants To Hear From You

But only if you're 21 years old or YOUNGER.

Some commenter on some opinion column I was reading at lunchtime had a link to something on the White House website, and while I was reading it, I saw a headline over on the right. It said, "Your Chance to be Heard at the United Nations Security Council."

Cool! I like giving my opinion, so I followed the link and found this instead:

Are you 21 or younger? Keep reading.

Bummer! If I were more obedient, I would have stopped there. But I didn't.

The United States is setting the agenda for the United Nations Security Council during the month of December, and Ambassador Susan Rice wants to bring your voice into one of the world’s most important decision-making bodies. From December 2-14, you have a chance to call attention to an issue that you care about. What’s the most vital challenge to international peace and security facing your generation? Send your answer in a one-minute video or in written form to, keeping your submission to fewer than 250 words. If selected, your answer will become a topic of debate at an innovative Security Council event that will be hosted by Ambassador Rice and broadcast live on December 21 at

This is pretty annoying on its face. The US ambassador to the UN wants to know what incredibly immature people think. But they don't give a rip about the thoughts of people who have worked for a living or raised a family or built a business from scratch or grown the food that feeds the world. No, grown-ups don't matter to the movers and shakers in the Obama administration.

So they don't want my opinion? Fine. They can have my kids' opinions. Except that at 23 and 25, my kids are way too old!

It gets worse. If you listen to Rice's video, it says more than just what's written. Here's a transcript of the opening:

On December 21st, the US is going to lead an important event in the UN Security Council, and today I want to ask for your help and participation. As you know, the UN Security Council works to resolve conflicts and pursue global peace and security, and we always have a very full agenda. But this month we're doing something a little bit different. No matter who you are, no matter where in the world you're from, if you're 21 years old or younger, we want YOU to tell us what issue is most important to you. You have the greatest stake in the future, and your voices deserve to be heard. So the question I'm posing to you is this: What is the most vital challenge to international peace and security facing your generation? Tell the UN Security Council what issue YOU believe deserves more attention and explain why it's important.

The rest of the video gives information on how to submit your Important Issues for them to consider.

It hurts. The US wants to represent the entire world's youths, not just American youths. It wants to plumb the depths of minds that believe the most pressing issues are things such as, "Um... Like, I think iTunes downloads should be free. And, yeah, college should be free too. Yeah."

It's maddening to read stuff like this and have it confirmed that the adults left DC in January of 2009, and the perpetual adolescents are now in charge.

Get the US and our cash out of the UN, put Ambassador Rice on 99 weeks of unemployment, and send the entire United Nations packing for some third-world backwater where it belongs. Then maybe we can sell the UN building and use the proceeds to apply as a the first drop in the bucket towards paying down the national debt.

Saturday, December 04, 2010


Having the roommate that I have has been very enlightening. She and I are so VERY different, and those differences have caused me to reflect on the way I'm wired and my upbringing and the effects these things have had in my life.

I've blogged already about sorters and stuffers. My movie-going friend in the post is now my roomie, and I addressed the issue again in this post as it relates to the kitchen.

My roommate goes to bed early because she has to get up way before dawn to go to work. She even gets up early on weekends. I don't get that, but she says it's because she's had to have this schedule for so long it's part of her nature now.

On the other hand, I like to stay up late and love to sleep in in the morning. I don't get to sleep in on weekdays, and I've had this schedule forever too, but it hasn't made me wake up early on my own. In high school I used to stay up reading until 2:00 or 3:00 or 4:00 in the morning, especially in the summer, so I believe night-owlness is hard-wired. It's certainly not anything my parents encouraged me to do!

This early bird/night owl difference works for my roommate and me, though, because we almost never need the shower at the same time.

Another difference is our learning styles, although I think "learning styles" is a misnomer, because even when we're not learning, we still use our styles. I mentioned before that I'm visual and auditory, but that post was about the auditory side. Here at home, it's the visual side that comes out.

My roommate is NOT visual. Oh sure, she has her sense of vision, but she doesn't seem to see much. I notice the difference between us the most in the kitchen. My roomie leaves doors open. I've told her that sometimes I feel like Vanna White as I go through the kitchen reaching up and then down to shut cabinet doors and drawers. There have been some mornings after she's left for work and I get up before dark, that I've found a faint glow of light coming from the kitchen. It means she left the microwave door open again.

I find it entertaining. One day I even counted the open items I shut: 6. I reported that number to her. And yet I'm sure that she can't begin to understand why I would even care about doors being left open and food items out of order and pictures that aren't straight. Those things aren't important at all. It's just that I feel peace when things are in order, and I feel stressed at the sight of chaos.

Another thing I've realized is how much of what I do is because I hear my mom's voice in my head. Washing dishes by hand is one of those times.

My roommate likes to wash dishes by hand. I don't get that. When I moved in, her diswasher was broken and had been for some time. If it had been my house, I would have had a repairman over in a heartbeat or had a new dishwasher installed yesterday. Not her, but with two people's dishes to wash, she finally decided that a functional dishwasher was a good idea. Hallelujah!

But there are some items that still need to be washed by hand. The stainless steel frying pans are that way, and because I have a fried egg as part of my breakfast every day, I wash that pan almost daily (sometimes my roomie gets to it first). I've discovered myself doing that finger motion my mother instilled in me when I was a girl having to take turns doing dishes with my sister. My mom would run her fingers around the "clean" dishes and pans, and if she found any residual food that I'd missed, back it went into the dish water for me to do it RIGHT this time.

I mentioned to my roommate about remembering my mom's dishwashing demands, and she said when her mother found food stuck to the clean dishes, her mom would empty the cupboards of every pot, pan, plate, and cup and make her wash everything. Starting when my roommate was 7. Yikes!

When I look at what my roommate suffered as a child at the hands of various family members (this is just the tip of the iceberg), and when I look at the wonderful woman she is now, I am amazed. God has done an incredible work in her.

I am a visual, purse-sorting night owl, and she is a non-visual, purse-stuffing, warm, generous early bird. We get along just fine, and I am truly proud to call her friend.

Copy Cat Crimes Continue

Mob rule. Disturbing the peace. Anarchy. They're running rampant, and there's nothing you can do to stop them when they strike near you.

First it was rogue dancing interrupting commuters in Europe.

Then a 650-member choir disrupted shoppers at Macy's in Philadelphia.

And now the copy cats are at it, singing the same song. In a food court, no less. How is a person to eat?

Bah! Humbug, I say.

No, I mean, PLEASE do it near me!