Saturday, April 30, 2005

Happy Blog-o-versary To Me

Wow. It's been a whole year. I wrote my first blog entry exactly 1 year ago today. Neat.

It's funny -- I completely forgot this sorta-kinda event was coming up until I read ESC's blog earlier and she noted that it was her blog-o-versary as well. No big observations to throw out as a result of the day, really. More just pleased that I've stuck with it for an entire year.

It was a terrific Saturday -- breakfast out with the kids, afternoon lounging around the house, a couple of hours over at Ray and Gina's for their annual crawfish boil (it was terrific -- wish we had stayed longer, but we had evening plans back at home which actually wound up getting cancelled after the fact...), then we stopped or some unbelieveably good gelato, ran back to Ray's to grab my wife's forgotten purse (sigh...) and now the kids are down and we're just sort of lounging around.

But yeah, a year of blogging. I feel like I should reflect on the past year. I don't really feel compelled to, though. I mean, I really loath self-important blogging. I use my blog as a means to sort things out, mostly, or just to connect with other people I know or am getting to know or don't know but would like to. But I try to avoid using it as a soapbox, and I don't really think of this collection of thoughts as "important," at least not to anyone else but me. I try to keep it entertaining, at least.

But yeah, for me it's been important. I'm writing again, for one thing, which is a big deal for me. And while the past year has had a few too many challenging moments for comfort this blog has provided some opportunities to sort things through in a way that has really helped.

Anyway, happy blog-o-versary to me, and I hope I've not bored you all terribly. Stick around -- I've got a feeling that some big stuff is coming, and I might actually be writing happy stuff for a change!

Mood: Chillin'
Now Playing: "Love, Actually"

Wednesday, April 27, 2005


OK, so have y'all heard about the new Joss Whedon movie, Serenity? The one based on the most excellent, dearly departed, unfairly cancelled, and sorely missed TV show Firefly?

OK, l LOVED Firefly. Great show, bought the box set, watched it a bunch of times, spent lots of otherwise useful time feeling angry and betrayed as once again a terrific show went bye-bye WAY too soon, etc. I was thrilled to hear it was being made into a movie. The trailer was just released yesterday and it looks AMAZING. But the darn thing isn't being released into theaters until September 30th. What to do, what to do?

Well, turns out they're doing some very early screenings. In 10 cities, one time only, next Thursday at 10:00, and Austin is one of the lucky locales, AND I'VE GOT TWO TICKETS AND I'M GOING! YEEEEEEEEEEHHHHHAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!


I'm a little excited.

Mood: Ecstatic
Now Playing: Nada.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Danger! Danger!

OK, so. This. This is ... oh, damn ... I can't even ... jeez. It's so evil, so maddening. My god, the song ... the song.... I feel like that dude in Lovecraft's "The Rats in the Walls." "The song... the song in my ears...

We Stand As One

It's like every single hackneyed and cliche post-9/11 image compiled and distilled down into 3 minutes of pure, unadulterated banality. I'm sorry. I'm so very sorry. But I have a feeling that it's like that video in The Ring, and if I don't pass it on it'll do something terrible. Like make me vote Republican. Force me to buy Thomas Kincaid prints. Listen to Toby Keith albums.

Or worse.

When you've managed to watch it, and need a cure for the pain, check out the antidote here.

Mood: Disgusted, amused
Now Playing: Fantomas, "The Director's Cut"

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

How to Boil a Frog

Picked this quote up over at Talking Points Memo, via Ray's blog:

Senator John Cornyn (contact him here, if you'd like), quoted from the floors of a nearly-empty house of Congress:
"It causes a lot of people, including me, great distress to see judges use the authority that they have been given to make raw political or ideological decisions. [Sometimes] the Supreme Court has taken on this role as a policymaker rather than an enforcer of political decisions made by elected representatives of the people. I don't know if there is a cause-and-effect connection but we have seen some recent episodes of courthouse violence in this country. Certainly nothing new, but we seem to have run through a spate of courthouse violence recently that's been on the news and I wonder whether there may be some connection between the perception in some quarters on some occasions where judges are making political decisions yet are unaccountable to the public, that it builds up and builds up and builds up to the point where some people engage in - engage in violence."
Ummm, what?

Imagine, for a moment, if a progressive (or, worse yet, a bright-blue America-hating liberal) had the audacity to suggest, even in the infuriatingly bloviating and tentative fashion employed by Cornyn here, that violence against members of the executive or legislative branch that engaged in something they didn't like was maybe, just maybe, well not justified exactly, but kinda sorta understandable.

Imagine some tree-hugging, granola-eating liberal with more than a few screws loose kills a Senator, or a Senators family, because he doesn't agree with, oh I don't know, some questionable legislation that the guy railroaded through, or maybe he had a problem with the Senator lying and intentionally assisting a member of the Executive branch into misleading a nation into supporting an unjust war. Or maybe methodically undermining civil rights under the guise of protecting us from the "Bad Guys." Something not exactly popular in this guy's circle of friends. And let's say Ted Kennedy steps up and says "Well, I don't agree, really, but you gotta understand, I mean, well, what can you expect?"

Can you even imagine the (justifiable and correct) outrage? The (immediate and all-encompassing) fallout? The speed with which the story would be amplified, via the Goddamn Liberal Media, repeated and rephrased and riffed-upon within an inch of its life by the CoulterLimbaughHannity machine, until it dominated the public and private airwaves and every Op/Ed page in the country? And the way in which any media outlet or talking head who didn't mimic the agreed upon points of outrage would be excoriated and demonized into non-existence?

This guy, a US Senator (not to mention a judge who served on the Texas Supreme court) is suggesting that judges who render opinion on law that runs counter to what people want shouldn't be too surprised if those bad, naughty people decide to, well, kill them. And that on some level this is understandable. Not commendable, lawdy no! But, well, what do you expect? Don't these justices see the way the wind is blowing? After all, two branches of the US government are sliding as quickly as gravity will carry them into religio-fascism. That damn third branch of government better get with the program and follow suit, quick, or well, they'll only have themselves to blame when people decide to pop a cap in their asses for rendering unpopular opinions.

When did this happen, exactly? When did the tipping point occur, because I think we have passed the tipping point. When members of Congress have the temerity to suggest that domestic terrorism is, well, sorta understandable when some folks don't get their way, I've got to believe that maybe we're not seeing the usual conservative-to-liberal-and-back-again pendulum swing. It's starting to feel like nearly everyone in power is on the same side of the teeter-totter, and anyone who's left clinging to the other end is gonna get shoved off by force if necessary, for the greater good, for the greater glory.

I'm sure you're familiar with the old parable of how to boil a frog. If not, here it is (if you know it, please be patient or feel free to skip ahead. But this won't take long): If you try to boil a frog by dropping it right into boiling water, you will fail because the frog will jump right out of the pot again. However, if you put a frog in cool water and then turn on the heat, the frog will not realize it is being slowly cooked alive.

Until it is too late.

So, here's the question: How long have we been in the pot? Each tick-mark on the radical right agenda a matchstick, our rights and civil liberties thrown on the fire in the name of safety and security, the wall separating church and state broken down, piece by piece, turned to kindling and thrown on the pyre, the flames reaching higher and higher, licking the air, caressing the sides of the pot, fitfully striking toward the heavens.

The water is near boiling. We're in the pot. And all I can wonder is, can we still jump out? Can we maybe splash enough water over the side to extinguish the flames? I don't know.

Mood: Troubled
Now Playing: UNKLE, "Never Never Land"