The tantrum
Thursday June 30th 2022, 9:37 pm
Filed under: History,Politics

Curious. So, reading this, the Trumps’ effort at adding their chosen White House china to the history books failed even though there’s a group that that’s what they do, they assist The First Spouse in designing, ordering, and stocking a set for each new incoming administration.

Because what they wanted cost too much (I remember when Laura Bush was criticized for spending nearly half a mil) and was taking too long for the couple to bother with anymore.

The Obamas’ set? With its Pacific rim? (How did the reporter miss that pun just begging to leap onto the page after they said the blue was for the waters of Hawaii?) Or any slightest suggestion of blue states? No way.

But Hilary Clinton’s included “ornate, shiny gold plates” and it even matched a certain someone’s favorite commode. Well there you go.

Puts a new angle on the former guy’s smashing the porcelain against the wall, doesn’t it? He was trying to dish it to Hilary’s place at the table.

I think if she’d had any idea who would be coming later she’d have picked something with blue, too.

It’s not hard to think he must have wanted solid gold or at least gold-plated plates, and that if he’d gotten them, they’d be at Mar-a-Lago now even though they would have been White House property.

But he couldn’t have it, and he was no longer going to be invited to dinner, so he broke hers.

Well. He did say he was going to beat china.

 

(Props to an unknown person on FB for that last sentence.)



Friends time to the rescue
Wednesday June 29th 2022, 9:57 pm
Filed under: Friends,Politics

1.My friend Karen is as much a political junkie as I am, raised by activist parents, and she was itching to talk about yesterday’s hearing and asked if she could come on over. We ended up talking for hours and solving the problems of the world; now all the politicians have to do is listen to us and they and we are golden. Right?

2. I thought I’d fill out my Real ID application as long as I was on the DMV site paying the car registration. I think their user interface was designed by unpaid interns–it was just so badly written. C’mon, California, you’ve got Silicon Valley right here, you can do better than this. You shouldn’t have to guess on what they meant to say vs what they did say while you’re jumping through hoops. Aargh.

Which means, 3. I’ll finish that tomorrow because there are only so many hours in the day and I’ve about run out of this one’s.



Needles and threads, too
Monday June 27th 2022, 9:50 pm
Filed under: Family,Food,Friends,History,Life,Politics

I got a message.

San Diego Jennifer, whom we adore from when she was in law school at Stanford, said she was flying into town for a wedding but there was a problem with her bridesmaid dress and did I have or did I know who had a sewing machine she could use for a few minutes and could we hopefully possibly get to see each other?

It’s been about ten years. I miss her. YES!

When she said what time she’d be getting off the plane I mentioned that it was our anniversary and what time our dinner was set for. She said she could come tomorrow.

Oh what the heck, she came today and when she ran out of time she borrowed the sewing machine, but not till we’d had a great time catching up for far too short a time. Her friend who’d picked her up from the airport got invited in too because of course.

I offered them peaches from Andy’s.

I got to see the complete surprise on Jennifer’s face as her eyes flew open and then closed in ecstasy at that first bite. Her friend’s reaction to her own was simply, Wow. When I offered a second peach, the friend hadn’t been going to ask by any means but she was sure glad to take me up on it.

I sent them off with another two for the road. Those peaches are at their very most perfect today and they should be enjoyed just like that.

Our dinner arrived minutes later. I’d ordered it delivered so that there wouldn’t be any last minute tension or scramble, it would just come, and turns out Richard’s meeting, the real wild card in all this, had gone over. So it was just as well we weren’t wrecking a restaurant’s reservation schedule.

So: 42: Life, the Universe, and he’s my Everything.

Richard’s family had served all the raspberries anybody could eat at our wedding breakfast. His grandfather had a quarter acre berry patch in Northwest Washington, DC in what’s now the Obamas’ neighborhood, where in the 1930s he’d bought the plot next door as well as the one he built his house on and forever after refused to sell it because that was his garden and his raspberry patch. He was born a farm boy and wanted to work some land. (Even if he was the lawyer who wrote the laws governing the new Federal Radio Commission, which became the FCC with him as chairman at one point and–I need to ask my sister-in-law to be absolutely sure, but our memory is that he was the author of the Fairness Doctrine.)

Yesterday’s recipe? We ate it for breakfast. It had to be raspberries. Go Grampa H.

And I get a second visit with Jennifer when she brings the sewing machine back. We’ve made an appointment to go out to lunch.

—-

Before I forget, for those who missed the announcement. The January 6 committee said today that they had new information and were holding an emergency hearing at 1:00 Eastern Tuesday, with some of them flying back to DC for it after having gone home for the Congressional recess.

It should be interesting.



The hearings need the listenings
Thursday June 16th 2022, 9:31 pm
Filed under: Family,History,Politics

The third January 6 hearing today: I missed part of the second due to the time zone difference–I was not getting up at  6 a.m., thanks. But listening to bits and snippets afterwards of what reporters thought were the main points just didn’t have the same effect as listening to the whole thing start to finish.

One of the things about being hearing impaired since my teens is a need to see someone’s face when they’re talking. It’s not just the words that matter, it’s how they feel about those words as they’re saying them and I wanted to know.

I remember the chapter in Dad’s book about the wealthy Texas oilman turned art collector who could never be fooled by frauds and fakes as long as his deaf wife was alive. She could always tell if the seller believed his own words–or not.

And man did he get swindled after she was gone.

There is such an enormity to the story of our first violent transfer of power in history, and it felt last time like a dereliction of democracy not to have paid attention to the entire hearing.

So today’s, I did. (With the quick exception of answering one email while the retired judge was choosing his words very carefully as history watched, and v e r y  slowly.)

I wanted to say to some of the people involved in this mess, Didn’t your parents teach you to make choices that you would always be glad to publicly acknowledge you’d made? Didn’t they tell you that cheaters always get caught–if not by anyone else then by their own consciences, and that feels even worse? How not putting that burden on yourself, much less others, is far more the way to go in life, hon?

“Get yourself an f’in good criminal defense attorney, John, because you’re going to need one.”

And not just him.

Man, am I grateful for my folks.

——-

(Dad’s book, The Fabulous Frauds, got him and the publisher sued by one of the forgers who was still alive but hiding from the French authorities in South America. The book got republished without that chapter and another the publisher was antsy about, so if you’re interested in it at all, the purple Weybright and Talley imprint is the one you’d want. But in one of the other stories, someone did copy the Mona Lisa about a hundred years ago, stole the original and put their fake in its place and nobody noticed for a week or two. –edit: two years.–  No worries, the Louvre got the real deal back and held him accountable.

Wait. There’s an analogy lurking in there.)



Follow up
Wednesday May 11th 2022, 9:09 pm
Filed under: Knit,Life,Politics

So this post is a little like the fledgling finch I watched trying to land on the newest leaves of an apricot seedling today: kind of flapping its wings all over the place with its feet flailing before flitting off thataway.

Pete Buttigieg, talking sense and being reasonable on the whole Roe issue before the Court.

Last night I was going to start Gansey squares above the brim next on the requested gray hat–when all that other stuff happened. I took it to the emergency dental appointment because you just never know.

But my brain was just not doing patterns. Stockinette on auto-repeat only.

Just need to decrease at the top now.

My new Skacel olivewood needles showed up for tomorrow’s highly anticipated new start in brighter yarns and I’ve never had olive ones before. I know it’s a particularly dense wood. If you’ve tried them I’d be curious to hear what you think.

(And yesterday’s post should have been titled, Another one bites the dust. I think my brain is back.)

I took a gross picture of my face. My husband, with better lighting, took a grosser one and sent it to all the kids. Um, thanks I guess?

The new dentist called this evening to follow up to make sure things were okay. I like this guy.



Arrivederci
Friday March 11th 2022, 10:07 pm
Filed under: Friends,Garden,Life,Politics

Tony and I couldn’t talk politics at all, but we could definitely talk fruit trees with enthusiasm.

I’m pretty sure he would have loved watching one of my apricot seedlings grow up, knowing he was nourishing something both rare and the best to be found. He loved to cook, and he would have done really great things with those in a few years.

But it was not to be. Last night our Italian friend peacefully passed on at a ripe old age as his beloved garden was starting its new season of blossoms and green and fruit and growth for his wife and daughter to hold him close by.



An interesting Thanksgiving table
Friday February 25th 2022, 10:07 pm
Filed under: History,Politics

This made a good metaphor for the moment–sometimes you *do* have to push the bear away that’s threatening your loved ones, even when it has claws and you don’t. (BBCnews link.)

Meantime, Pres. Biden’s Supreme Court pick for the Supreme Court, Ketanji Brown Jackson, is married to a man whose twin is married to the sister of former House Speaker Paul Ryan’s wife. Ryan praised her intellect, her character, and her integrity (his description) today.

We’re going to have a great Justice on the Court.

Such a strong, strange-feeling mixture in the headlines this week.



For their own good
Monday January 24th 2022, 10:06 pm
Filed under: History,Life,Politics

They can’t say it out loud, but Fox and the like have got to be really really hoping the unvaxxed Sarah Palin’s defamation lawsuit against the New York Times, thrown out by one court and reinstated by another, fails.

The trial was delayed by her Covid diagnosis. Of course.

With thanks to Lee Ann Dalton for the link, I can only wish that others who’ve been persuaded by such might read all the love in these words.



Don’t roll your eyes
Saturday November 20th 2021, 10:50 pm
Filed under: Politics

Tracy Ullman as Angela Merkel. Somehow I had missed out on this till now.

Enjoy.



The son of their former Republican Senator
Monday November 01st 2021, 7:42 pm
Filed under: Politics

There is an election in Virginia tomorrow, but also one in Utah. Where my cousin Jim is a candidate for mayor. (Please vote if there’s an election where you are!)

He reported two phone conversations he’d had today, and I’m going to mostly-quote from his Facebook post, especially for my mom since she won’t see it otherwise.

In one, a woman asked him, Are you vaccinated?

Jim: Yes.

Why do you hate the Constitution!

In the second, the guy asked him, Why are you trying to get people to cheat in the election?

Jim: I’m not.

That’s a lie. I got a postcard from you where you tell me I can mail in my ballot.

Jim: And?

And all voting by mail is cheating! Don’t you know that? How can I vote for a candidate who doesn’t know that?

Jim said both conversations ended abruptly after he told them, essentially, You’re nuts.

One of his readers asked him about representing people like that, and his answer was those two weren’t voting for him.

As in, let’s have it just be just two people who think like that. Right?



Speed bump ahead
Tuesday October 12th 2021, 10:23 pm
Filed under: LYS,Politics

Twenty-six rows today, maybe a row shy of twenty-six inches. Serious progress.

Forgive me a bit of a rant, though.

Imagiknit‘s email saying “Your package has been shipped” also says, and this is new, that if the post office is still claiming they haven’t got it yet, which is in fact what they’re saying on mine, they do, check with them, ie, they’re just not updating in a timely manner. I read that as, please don’t make us pay for our employees’ time tracking it down because of the post office’s screwups. I also know how immediately Imagiknit gets their customers’ purchases out there.

Postmaster General DeJoy made it official policy to slow down packages as of Oct 1–I guess not entering them into the system means they’re trying to dodge customer blowback against that slowdown on their part.

I don’t know why he still has his job. I think he’d have to be fired for cause but there’s definitely cause: a whole lot of people, especially in rural areas, depend on timely mail for their meds. My problem is just yarn but still, I do want to start the branches on my tree and I’m almost out of the white for the background.

And of course this turned out to be the first week where my husband has had to drive in to work, and he no longer works where I can just drop him off. We had planned to buy a new car for the commute whenever it finally happened but this has definitely turned out not to be the year to be in the market for one.

So heading out to the nearest yarn store in desperation is not something I can do for a few days either. I’ve been sitting here with my knitting needles chasing that roadrunner as fast as I can go and I’m about to smack right into that wall.

I’m just going to have to wait. Ah, poor baby.



Roberts dissented
Wednesday September 01st 2021, 10:39 pm
Filed under: Friends,History,Life,Politics

Texas passed the intended death of Roe v. Wade and Trump’s appointees allowed it to stand today. Meaning it is now in effect, arguments and lawsuits to come or not, and every woman there who might ever need an abortion for any reason must have it done no more than two weeks after her period is late. And if you drive her to another state for it even a day later, anyone can sue you and collect a bounty.

And then there’s Katy.

Katy is a friend of mine of 34 years whose second, much-wanted, much-anticipated pregnancy years ago turned into a molar pregnancy: meaning, it stopped developing into a baby at all and started growing wildly, randomly, and at the speed of fetal cells was rapidly turning into what was going to be a cancer taking over her body. Her blood pressure skyrocketed.

She spent sixteen days in a coma. Having been a professional flutist, she had to relearn how to play. She had to relearn a lot of things. She had a major seizure as she was finally coming to, so she spent years on seizure meds, and that medical history in this state means being unable to drive. When they finally eased her off them many years later there was a risk of sparking another grand mal. But she lucked out and she finally got to feel like herself again.

She was devastated at losing the pregnancy but the doctors told her it had no longer been one and they had had no choice but to remove it to save her life–it had been a very very near thing as it was. It was not and could not ever have become a baby.

And now under the charming Governor Abbott and his collaborators, anyone, anyone at all, would have the right to violate HIPAA over the medical history of someone they don’t even know and to collect $10,000 from Katy’s husband for driving her to the hospital to save her life. Because, technically, since that mess was in her womb that was an abortion.

Had he not, their oldest would have grown up without his mom.

Had he not, the two children who came along later, giving great comfort to both of them, would never have come to be and let me tell you, the world would have been a lesser place without those great kids and their mom.

Biology is messy. Life is imperfect. You have to allow people to make choices you disagree with–and I am no great fan of abortion, let me be clear–in order to save those choices for those who would die without the right to make them.

To the men in Texas who think requiring a face mask is a violation of one’s rights but dictating medical and lifetime outcomes to women is not, we have a Constitution that protects all religions from the adherents of any other one, and as I understand it, under Jewish law, the life and health of the mother come first. And–here I’m less sure of myself, please correct me if I’m wrong–the spirit is thought to enter the body at the first breath of life. Before that it’s just parental happy anticipation.

Texas’s law cannot stand. It must not. The only thing it accomplishes is punishing women and those who love them for the sake of the political aspirations of a few men who don’t give a damn about anybody but themselves. They are the biblical Pharisees passing by on the other side of the road from the wounded, punishing any Good Samaritan in sight.



Now you Guam and done it again, Marj
Friday March 12th 2021, 11:44 pm
Filed under: Life,Politics

If anyone’s considering putting in quartz countertops–and I would say the majority of kitchens I’ve seen that were clearly remodeled towards putting the house on the market have them–you might want to read NPR’s report on them first. Now that the industry knows their workers’ lungs are getting silicosis, they’re still not doing enough to protect them.

Granite is far safer to work with (and personally I think it’s prettier), and if you get a dark one (scroll down to the bottom for details–I’ve linked to that site before, it’s a good one) if it’s truly all granite you likely will never have to refinish it because it will never absorb a thing.

Meantime, in political news, the ever-loud-and-angry Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene decried our giving foreign aid to undeserving countries like, y’know, Guam!

The representative from Guam decided to gift her with some Guam Chamorro Chip cookies as a warm welcome to the new Representative, and the governor is sending her a history of the territory. All done with island charm, it sounds like.

So you know that means I had to go run look up what a chamorro chip was. Made from some exotic dried fruit or something?

Apparently it’s mini-chips. Of the chocolate, shall we say, persuasion.



Butter emails
Thursday February 25th 2021, 11:01 pm
Filed under: Food,History,Politics

The question on everyone’s minds, clearly, is this: does your butter still spread on your bread?

Who expected an outcome of the pandemic to be, and I quote, rubbery butter?

Who knew that farmers fed their cows palm oil? But apparently they do, and in Canada it has become an issue.

Since everybody’s home quarantining, more people are baking, and they’re using more butter than normal, and the farmers needed to step up production to meet the demand.

So they increased the palm oil in the animals’ feed, (bbcnews link) which apparently does work at upping the fat content in their milk.

Making the resulting lipids not traditionally soft at room temperature anymore.

The farmers, after saying, hey, the US and the UK do this too and it’s not new made clear their intention towards us consumers: Let them eat cake.



Wizard of awe
Thursday January 21st 2021, 11:06 pm
Filed under: History,Politics

I asked my friend Jane if I could borrow her picture and credit her, and she said, Sure! –But that it was someone else’s artwork.

Oh and: Jill Biden’s coat at the inaugural had the official flowers of every state and territory embroidered on it.