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Veeps Run Amok

My story today in the Style section.

Meanwhile, large mountains spotted Out West:


By Joel Achenbach  |  September 8, 2008; 8:43 AM ET
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Repost from last kit since nobody is awake yet:

Gotta take umbrage at one part of Joel's article. Dan Quayle was reading the spelling of the common root vegetable off of a flash card given to him by a teacher's aide. While it is deplorable that Quayle didn't know enough to correct the spelling, it's a broader indictment of the people that school had on the front line instructing kids.

I still say that in 2000, Quayle would have been the better moron.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

I have to admire Joel for writing such a long article and not once quoting John Nance Garner.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 8:55 AM | Report abuse

Somebody mentioned Alben Barkley the other day, and I had to look him up. Too bad he's pretty much forgotten; in his day, he was well-known and rightly well-regarded. I suppose history is full of people like him, who made real contributions, only to be passed over in the history books.

Posted by: slyness | September 8, 2008 9:03 AM | Report abuse

The Constitution is clear enough about the line of succession once a President is elected. My question is, nonetheless, what happens if either of the principle candidates become incapacitated, or killed, before the election, or before inauguration. Could we possibly have a Hilary vs. Sara cat fight?

Just askin’

Posted by: Don from I-270 | September 8, 2008 9:11 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, Don. According to Maureen Dowd, you are going to have to wait until 2012 for the catfight of the century.

She spins a pretty plausible future history. McCain defeats Obama, but Palin forces him to not seek a second term to avoid a primary challenge. And then it's Hillary vs. Sarah. Hilarity ensues.

Posted by: Mo MoDo | September 8, 2008 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Nice refresher, Joel!

It was interesting to see how our incumbent VP would do on his trip to rescue his buddy Saakashvili and the resulting diplomatic disaster.

Chenny was thoroughlt humiliated by the president of Azebaijan by not receiving him right away. Chenney had to cool his heels chatting to his buddies in the oil biz.

At the end, Chenney did not attend the dinner given in his honor.

Pfffft. Dream pipeline gone. The only achievemnt of the trip was to promise one billion dollars of your money to his gangster protege in Georgia.

Seems like our VP has become useless after all.


Posted by: Braguine | September 8, 2008 9:25 AM | Report abuse

The previously indecipherable <3 was introduced by kbertocci via her daughter who intoned "less than three" as their verbalized code for <3, a sideways heart denoting "Love." SciTim asked in the immediate back boodle.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 9:29 AM | Report abuse

Helllllooo??? Anybody out there?

I wonder if we had the Rapture. This place is dead, dead, dead. Even a couple of my officemates are missing -- though perhaps not the ones I've have predicted were Rapture fodder. Ah, well. Far be it from me to complain about a little lovely post-Rapture peace and quiet, however. Good time to catch up on my reading. And I can find handicapped parking spots at the bus stop.

Ahem. Joel: you opined that Cheney was "almost a rogue operative." Please explain the "almost" part, cuz I'm not seeing it.

And BTW, just because Joel thought to put a buffalo butt on one of his kits doesn't mean you other Boodlers who have blogs (you know who you are!) can run out and put your own buffalo a$$es on your blogs, yanno.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Thanks, MoMoDo. But this answers only part of my question. What would the country do if suddenly one of the canditates could not be elected for some reason, leave Dubya in office another four years? There's a happy thought, NOT. :-(

Posted by: Don from I-270 | September 8, 2008 10:07 AM | Report abuse

No, Don, we are NOT leaving Arbusto in charge for another four years. Trust me. We ain't doin' it.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Whaddabout buffalo nickels, 'Mudge?

Or beefalos?


Posted by: Scottynuke | September 8, 2008 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Indescribably off-topic: on Wednesday, September 24, I will be at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at University of Maryland in order to chat with the public about actual science in extrasolar planetary exploration, in support of the Squonk Opera Company's production ASTRO-RAMA.

I do not know why they only list the scientist who will be speaking at Friday's performance. Perhaps because he also is a professional songwriter of country music, instead of a bum, which is what I am.

Posted by: ScienceTim | September 8, 2008 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Greetings from Yellowstone! I kid you not. My spousal unit and I arrived in WY Saturday afternoon. Haven't seen JA but I think we may have seen the same gathering of bison; one of which was trotting along beside the road muttering "durned tourists" to himself.

Now we're off again to see if we can find a moose. Or some moose. Mudge, what IS the plural for moose?

Posted by: ac in sj | September 8, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse

For those of you who don't get the dead-tree edition of the Post, please note that Joel's article is not IN the Style section... it's pretty much half the front page of the Style section.

Posted by: TBG | September 8, 2008 10:23 AM | Report abuse

But to seriously (well, for me) answer the question -- which I admit I have indeed been pondering -- about what would happen if a nominees goes belly up, I think it would depend upon what point during the campaign the candidate died. If it happened too close to the election, we'd just have to do what they do in most local elections: the vote goes forward with the deceased person's name on the ballot, with the understanding that if that person wins, something will be done after the election to rectify things. (I think this would be the answer simply because there doesn't seem to be any other option, so yes, it is a kind of default.)

In the case at hand, if McCain died, and it was close to the election and ballots were printed up, the election would go forward and the understanding would be that Palin becomes president. (And if that doesn't send a shudder through you, nothing will. But no way Palin wins such an election.)

Ditto if it was Palin (or Biden) who died; the understanding would be that after taking office in January, the newly elected president would nominate a vice president (as Nixon did with Ford) who would be approved by the Senate.

If on the other hand the candidate died almost immediately after the convention but before ballots were printed and there was time to do something, I suppose the head of the political party might call for an emergency convention to quickly nominate a replacement ticket. (It would be very hard for the opposite party to object and "insist" they stick with a dead guy on the ballot.)

But here's another nasty thought: what happens if a candidate wins the election but dies before the inaugural? (Pretty clearly, the vice presidential candidate gets sworn in as president.)

What really scares the holy bejaysus outta me is what would happen if McCain wins and dies, and Palin takes over. Because I don't think a VERY large segment of the population would accept her legitimacy.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Can somebody please explain "boodling" to me? I feel like the one guy at the party not clued in on the shaggy dog story.

Posted by: Cap'n Chucky | September 8, 2008 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Shiloh, I think maybe you missed part of the emoticon that I asked about -- the lower-case 'i' that precedes the less-than-3 is a part of it. I'm going with Cylon breasts, although I have thought of a disturbing third interpretation for i<3 which is "I cut the end off your *&#$ !"

Posted by: PlainTim | September 8, 2008 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Very scholarly article Joel.

I think the ambiguity over the VP role is part of what is driving the current obsession with Palin. As Joel points out, we have seen a shocking expansion of the VP role, with Cheney being the ultimate expression of mission creep. This leads to greater consternation over what might happen should another ambitious ideologically-driven individual assume the office.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 8, 2008 10:26 AM | Report abuse

The candidate is the product of the party. The rules of the DNC and RNC differ, but it is the party choice to replace an incapacitated candidate. An eleventh hour loss of a candidate would not change the ballot and the winning party would succeed to the presidency, probably with the remaining person on the ticket, i.e., a dead or stroked out presidential candidate who receives the most electoral votes would be succeeded by his vice-president as president, creating a vacancy in the office of vice president which would be filled by nomination by the new president and confirmation by Congress.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Cap'n Chucky - sometime after Joel started the Achenblog the comments section evolved into a kind of defacto discussion group dubbed "the Boodle" short for kaboodle. The topic typically starts off with whatever Joel writes about, termed the kit (Get it?). However, the discussion invariably wonders off-topic much like a bar discussion. The Boodle has many regulars, many who have gotten to know each other in the real world.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 8, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

RD Padouk - Thanks. I always appreciate a chance to reduce my ain't-got-a-clue quotient.

Posted by: Cap'n Chucky | September 8, 2008 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Cap'n Chucky, this here right now, what you are doing, is called "boodling." As in, to participate in a Boodle, what is the thing that follows upon a Kit, as Night followeth the Day, or some such. As, "the whole Kit-and-a-Boodle." I did not invent this nomenclature and finally had to ask about it after a week or two of seeing it in use. Or maybe more. It is terminology that was introduced during some break I took, I guess. One day, the term wasn't there; next thing I know, everyone's using it.

Posted by: PlainTim | September 8, 2008 10:33 AM | Report abuse

If McThuselah gets elected and dies, and Saracuda inadvertently field-dresses herself before the inaugural, does Pelosi become president?

Posted by: Cap'n Chucky | September 8, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Cap'n Chucky - sometime after Joel started the Achenblog the comments section evolved into a kind of defacto discussion group dubbed "the Boodle" short for kaboodle. The topic typically starts off with whatever Joel writes about, termed the kit (Get it?). However, the discussion invariably wonders off-topic much like a bar discussion. The Boodle has many regulars, many who have gotten to know each other in the real world.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 8, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Arrrgggh, Cap'n, ye be wot yer moight call a newbie in these here parts. As explained above, you know know what the Boodle is (and we be the Boodlers). And here's a helpful addendum of FAQs, terminology, obscure concepts, argot, longo, etc., that might also help.

Feel free to ask questions at any time.

The conductor will be around shortly to collect your ticket. The fare is $5, $4 if you're a senior citizen.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Right, Tim, I did miss the forepart i in your comment and will agree with the missing posterior u explanation proffered. However, the "i less three" emoticon may also refer to the three blind mice or some incomplete formulaic recipe ingredient. I guess it depends on the context in which it appeared.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Howdy Cap'n Chucky. You got the hang of Boodling fast. I believe third-in-succession rules would apply. However, as I understand precedent, in any such emergency Al Haig would be in charge.

And ac in sj, the plural of Moose is Meese.


Great story, Joel. I like the (I'm sure unintended) ambiguity in RD's description of Cheney as mission creep - it works as a proper name too.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 10:42 AM | Report abuse

Cap'n Chucky, welcome aboard to this here barquee. Are you a real-live, no-&^%$ master-of-steam-and-motor-vessels-of-any-gross-tons-upon-oceans, or some guy that bought a nautical cap at the boat store, and toodles around in a blue-bottomed Bayliner? Either way, you'll feel right at home here.

Posted by: Don from I-270 | September 8, 2008 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Cap't, the electoral college will probably decide the election in the event of two dead candidates, Congress may dispute the choice, thereby throwing the whole process to the Supreme Court, which under the present makeup will probably appoint itself as Regent for the dead president.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Hmmm, context, yes, that's important. I saw this mysterious emoticon in characters 2 feet high, isolated from anything else, on a poster on the side of a city bus. No interpretation that I have yet adduced seems like a probable candidate for the reason someone spent money to post it on a public bus.

Posted by: PlainTim | September 8, 2008 10:46 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: RD Padouk | September 8, 2008 10:50 AM | Report abuse

The <3 symbol is often vocalizes as "heart". As in "I heart the Jonas Brothers." Whether hearting someone or something is a weaker emotion than "love" seems to be ambiguous.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 10:50 AM | Report abuse

RD P--
what do you mean mission creep?
Just omit mission. :)

Posted by: Brag | September 8, 2008 10:51 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Don from I-270 - Fortunately, I'm not actually captain of anything. Trust me, you prefer it that way. I do skipper a kayak, the sort of vessel real boaters call a "speed bump" around the waters off Cape Cod.

BTW, when's Carville gonna get up in Barack's grille and yell "It's the economy, stupid!"? If it ain't soon, Real America's gonna get its clocked cleaned. Again.

Posted by: Cap'n Chucky | September 8, 2008 10:53 AM | Report abuse

The Supremes as Regent for the Presidency. Now there's an interesting prospect, in the Chinese proverb sense of the word. And I thought it couldn't get worse. My, y'all are just little rays of political sunshine this morning.

I was glad to see moderate alien's greeting in the last Boodle. I personally wear more pink now than I did as a young woman; as I age I find it suits me better.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 10:55 AM | Report abuse

An alternate scenario for SCOTUS in the event that both the president and vice-president elect are dead before assuming office would be to choose the party choice of the electorate, meaning that either Nancy Pelosi or John Boehner could become president, depending on elected party mortality and the whim of the court. Nancy would, however, win by default if not thrown to SCOTUS, altlhough Cheney could claim the right to ascension by virtue of never having officially served as president and therefore eligible for that office.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

hi, ac in sj! enjoy your stay in yellowstone.

ya know, i know you don't like it when i say these things, but could we cut the sexist crap already? and modo has some definite misogynist tendencies despite her double-x chromosome creds, which is one of the reasons i often don't care for her writing.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | September 8, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 10:57 AM | Report abuse

p.s. and if anyone is wondering why ms. clinton is not criticizing palin right now, it's like "gee, duh, i wonder how the media would spin that one?"

Posted by: L.A. lurker | September 8, 2008 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Ivansmom - as I typed the term "mission creep" I must admit the thought entered my mind.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 8, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

My apologies for using the words "Cheney" and "virtue" in the same sentence.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 11:05 AM | Report abuse

From the OED:


• noun (pl. same) North American term for ELK.

— ORIGIN from Abnaki (an American Indian language).

Now we know: One moose, three mooses.

Posted by: slyness | September 8, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Or would that be three moose?

Posted by: slyness | September 8, 2008 11:09 AM | Report abuse

"Moose" is not from a PIE language, so I think we have to cast farther afield for pluralization rules. One could, of course, ask actual indigenous-language speakers (which language gave us "moose" anyway?), but what's wrong with Hebrew? Moosot or Moosim (that's Moose-oat or Moo-seem, for the gentiles), depending on whether the correct noun gender is male or female. Regarding gender, I think it depends on whatever the moose wants. I make it a matter of principle to avoid arguments with organisms able to squish me like a ripe berry.

Posted by: StorytellerTim | September 8, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

L.A. lurker, are you referring to something specific? I haven't noticed any sexist crap in this Kit or Boodle and I'm usually pretty sensitive to it. Talking about the line of succession has been gender-neutral so far. The fact is that two people potentially in the line of presidential succession are women and that isn't, in and of itself, sexist.

I'd even say that discussion of candidates' relative merits for office is not inherently sexist, although one of the four is a woman. It is both possible and necessary to discuss their range and types of experience, and that may involve occasionally mentioning that Palin is a woman. Now if someone were to say (a la the old Laurie Anderson song) that she'll probably push the button because of hormones -- that's sexist.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Oops, I see that slyness already has addressed the question of source language.

Posted by: StorytellerTim | September 8, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Here's the interpretation of the 20th amendment. Also see the 25th.

Finally, Section 3 allows the Congress to provide by law for cases in which neither a President-elect nor a Vice President-elect is eligible or available to serve.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

I'd say the "cat-fight" comment would qualify as sexist.

Posted by: PlainTim | September 8, 2008 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Three moose

Posted by: dmd | September 8, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

I prefer the generally accepted pluralization of Goose as a reference: A goose is inherently female, a gander male; a mixed group is called geese, a group of males is called ganders and a group of females is called gooses. Hence, Moose follows as meese, manders and mooses.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, everyone.

I'm still here, just too busy this morning to Boodle.

I'll try to catch up later, when I have some time to relax 'n ponder.

Have a good day, all.


Posted by: bc | September 8, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

I would love to see Sen. Clinton tear Sarah Palin a new aperture. I think she could do it very nicely -- i.e., by taking the high road and showing her how grown-ups argue. She can start by thanking Sarah Palin for picking up the baton of political equality for women, but gently note that despite her gratitude for Sarah's efforts, she has a few policy differences with her. Then she can start small and mild, and build up to a thundering crescendo on any of a number of issues on which they are diametrically opposed.

Posted by: PlainTim | September 8, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

1 orignal, 3 orignaux and often said as or-nial and or-nio. Ha!

Moose, moose cow and moose calf. Mooselet is cute but not in use.

The Times had a funny moose cartoon recently. Be afraid, be very afraid.

Posted by: shrieking denizen | September 8, 2008 11:35 AM | Report abuse

Ah Shiloh, you had me at manders.

Posted by: nellie | September 8, 2008 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Mooserati? (No, sounds too much like a Canuckistani sports car.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 11:43 AM | Report abuse*:IE-SearchBox&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&sourceid=ie7&rlz=1I7DKUS

It's the economy that will probably win or lose this election. The prospect of the USA in default a decade from now is a frightening possible futurity.

Note: The link is indirect because I originally read it at my trading site and encryption was not possible

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Shriek: The moose calf is a mosling, from gosling.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Poor bc. His employer has been seized by the federal gummint. (It's on the front page.)

I *told* him to take his anti-seizure medication, but would he listen? No.

It's a guy thing.

*fingers crossed for him anyway*

(BTW, bc, whose touchdown pass do you rate higher in the "film-at-11" playoffs: the Carolina bomb, or the Brett Favre bomb? I think I rate them a tie. And that Chicago game was a cold shower of a shocker. Gonna be an interesting year, especially with Brady out for the season.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Perhaps if we bill it as a moose-puma show-down, that's less sexist.

Posted by: Mo MoDo | September 8, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I thought a mooselet was a shirt.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 12:01 PM | Report abuse

I thought a mooselet was when the moose signed a contract to rent the apartment you were already renting from someone else...

Posted by: Scottynuke | September 8, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

More on the economy and taxes: "McCains Convenient Untruth."

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

For the record I was the one that called it a cat-fight, not Dowd. The real Maureen Dowd called it "The Clash Of The Titans" "between Ma Barker and Sarah Barracuda." See, not sexist at all.

Well, maybe not entirely. There is this line that is subject to interpretation:

"It’s delicious imagining the Debate of the Century between Big Mama, as Bill’s male aides called Hillary, and “Hottie Granny,” as People magazine will doubtless dub Sarah."

But in all fairness, Dowd has been on her best behavior since she got her wrist slapped by Clark Hoyt. She hasn't effeminized Obama in weeks.

Posted by: Mo MoDo | September 8, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Walter Mondale was the last candidate that truthfully advanced his tax policy during the campaign. He is now known as a cautionary tale.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

once there was a moose named gerry
who served his community and was merry
until he took a gander at the powerful hill
and muscled in, cutting districts at will
oh what a mander was that gerry

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 8, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

I think Obama needs to hammer home his own version of Reagan's winning theme and ask "Are you better off than you were eight years ago?"

Posted by: TBG | September 8, 2008 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Ahoy, Cap'n.

Too much lawnmowing yesterday. It invigorated me then but today I feel like carp. Carp, I say!

Intersting topic today. I suspect that various State Legislatures (2/3 of them?)would have to come up with fast Electoral College electors' rules in the event of last minute unfortunateness immediately PRIOR to election, and that the House should by the Constitution choose if unfortunateness happened AFTER the election. But with the SCOTUS usurping Congresional authority in 2000 as precedent, who knows?

Posted by: Jumper | September 8, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Funny you should mention that. George Will's column over the weekend was about how there are some many ways to define "better" that don't include silly statistics like per capita income or unemployment rate. And there are so many intangibles involved in "feeling" that who can say why you feel that way.

So, yeah, based on Georgie's hemming and hawing, that would be the type of framing the issues the Republicans would prefer to avoid.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

The Repubs want to avoid ALL issues this time around, because on issues they'd lose. So they want to make it about personalities.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

When Joel gets back from out West, I hope he'll kit for us on the Large Hadron Collider, which opens on Wednesday.

At least, we need a sciency distraction from the election.

Posted by: slyness | September 8, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Personalities win elections. Palin a sports reporter, has the same chance of becoming VP as a movie actor and peanut farmer had at becoming president; all with stints as governors.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

I like that question too TBG. Most of the voters in Oklahoma would be answering "No." Poor state, lots of uninsured, low unemployment rate but very few high-paying jobs, lots of two-and-three wage couples trying to make ends meet.

Funny you should mention carp,jumper. Our newspaper today had a story about a Silver Asian carp that "flew" (jumped) out of a lake in Arkansas and broke a teenage boy's jaw. And he wasn't even fishing.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 12:46 PM | Report abuse

I don't agree it is always about personalities, Sholoh; otherwise this election would be between Huckabee and Dodd or Edwards, maybe. Hillary would have been blown away instead of getting 50 percent of the Dems and Obama the other 50.

And Nixon couldn't have been elected county farm agent if it was about personalities. And need I say the word "Cheney" with reference to a personality-free politician? Agnew?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Who's on first?

Posted by: omni | September 8, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Our current Federal election will guarantee that elections aren't always about personality - none of the leaders have much personality.

Posted by: dmd | September 8, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

It's kind of a shame that people well educated in history and are well up to date on the policies and issues only get one vote, As do I, and I rarely read beyond the headlines. There's lots of us out there like that.

Marketing sells. Sex appeal sells. Politicians will use every form of appeal they can and target their audience to convince they are the best for the job.

The republicans are not void of issues, and ironically they can use their own incompetince to oppose government programs the democrats are pushing. For instance, if the past administration is so lousy as the dems claim, who in the right mind that can afford insurance would trust them to manage their health care?

I just want to see a good game. Let the mud fight begin!

Posted by: moderate alien | September 8, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

I recommend that you go check out the transcript from Rachel and Caitlin's "anti-wedding" discussion. Some of the questioners really had the long knives out, but the ladies did very, very well.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 8, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

I'm all fought out because we're slammed @ work and just hope Obama's delegate-counting wizards are working with his electoral vote wizards.

I thought the WaPo article this weekend about Palin toting the baby into prisons (was it?) with her and her husband being copied on all her official e-mail was revealing and not very inspiring.

Just booked the petsitter for the MBPH weekend. I think he was surprised I called him again--he was very critical of Emma's leash-walking skillz last time. Maybe this time he'll take my advice and play with them in the fenced backyard. :-)

Posted by: dbG | September 8, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Not sexist-I'd have the same problem with any male doing the same things!

My guess is the baby isn't in the foreign policy cram sessions right now.

Posted by: dbG | September 8, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

All due respect to Maureen Dowd, but she presents an implausible scenario that underestimates Governor Palin's strategic thinking.

Here's what really happens.

McCain-Palin win in 2008 and win reelection in 2012. Sixteen years have passed and now Palin's eldest son is old enough to run for President.

Track retires from a highly-decorated career in military service in 2018, but after a final deployment in a far-away land, has persistent and terrifying nightmares. And a new interest in Hydrangeas.

Stung by 2008 criticism of her experience, Palin encourages her son to run for the Senate when he leaves the military. He's reluctant, but agrees after a visit from the RNC leader, who's wearing a sandwich board with a giant queen of hearts on it.

Finally, in 2024, Track is set to run as the GOP candidate for President. Suddenly, a fellow soldier from his last deployment looks him up. Oddly, this guy's also a singer with very crisp phrasing. Not as good as Ella Fitzgerald, yet still wildly popular.

Where was I?

Oh yeah, so anyway, Marco shows Track a deck of 52 queens of hearts. The next day Track caucuses with the Democrats, tilting the Senate in their favor. Oh and he drops out of the presidential race.

Palin leaves office on January 20, 2025 and, weary of public service, retires to a picturesque little village to write murder mysteries and help the local police to solve the occasional homicide.

History will prove me correct.

Posted by: Fifty | September 8, 2008 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Personalities win elections. Always? No! I never said that. But personality does play a small role in the election process. And if the race is close, personality may affect the outcome with a very small segment of swing voters opting for the more personable candidate - or the candidate with more compelling characteristics than an incumbent administration. Very few elections are won on personality, but it has played a role and has been a popular enough belief to warrant this 2003 study:

Leaders' Personalities and the Outcomes of Democratic Elections
King, Anthony (Editor), Department of Government, University of Essex

Abstract: A widely held belief concerning democratic elections is that the votes of many individuals are influenced by their assessments of the competing candidates’ personalities and other personal characteristics and that, as a consequence, the outcomes of entire democratic elections are often decided by ‘personality factors’ of this type. Experts on the electoral politics of six countries – the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Canada and Russia – set out to assess how far this emphasis on personality and personal characteristics is actually warranted by the available empirical evidence. Using a variety of methodologies, the authors seek to isolate and weigh the role played by personality both in influencing individual voters’ behaviour and in deciding election outcomes. They conclude that, even with regard to the United States, the impact of personality on individual voters’ decisions is usually quite small and that, more often than not, it cancels out. They also conclude that, largely for those reasons, the number of elections whose outcomes have been determined by voters’ assessments of the candidates is likewise quite small : much smaller than is usually supposed. Moreover, there are no signs that the importance of personality factors in determining election outcomes is increasing over time.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

I'm willing to grant that personalities have always played a part in the election process. What I find absolutely fascinating is the McCain campaign's explicit avowed intention to make this election about personalities, not issues. This is interesting to me because (a) many voters have expressed unusual attention to policies, etc., demanding to know how the candidates would handle the economy and housing messes, the health care crisis, the Iraq war and immigration; and (b) the McCain announcement came after Obama explicitly said this would be an election about issues, not personalities.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Just for the record, William J Clinton cannot be Vice President. According to the 12th amendment, "... no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States."

Since Clinton is not eligible to be President, because of the term limits, he is not eligible to be Vice President.

Posted by: DouglasG | September 8, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

No, no, Fifty,

The plan is for the Trig-Track Wasilla PAC to throw the base a bone, and for this old man to come rolling home.

Posted by: SonofCarl | September 8, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

This old MOOSE, Soc...

Posted by: Scottynuke | September 8, 2008 2:17 PM | Report abuse

Fifty... that is an excellent analysis. I'm glad you're showing moderate alien that we're not all just a bunch of wingnuts.

Posted by: TBG | September 8, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

ac in sj,
I envy you. I suffered a bad outbreak of missing Yellowstone (and Thermopolis) when I checked out the hot spring just outside of Taipei. Steamy hot water, the scent of sulfur.

Watch Great Fountain Geyser for me.

Then again, in the morning fog swirling below the Old Faithful outlook, there was a ranger's amplified voice, "I wouldn't do that if I were you . . . " A tourist was getting too close to a bison.

Posted by: Dave of the Coonties | September 8, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

SoC, very funny.

And for websites never to visit:

There's one link that looks like the Wall Street Journal in technicolor with tiny icons all over.. about politics, natch. It's blinding and may provoke seizures.

Just thought I'd provide an url that nobody will feel compelled to click on, ever.

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 8, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps we should leave the election of the President and Vice-President to the media?
Why even bother to go to the polls and vote. I mean the media knows the issues, knows the candidates, and pretty much puts the questions and the answers out there, so let them decide?

Most of us vote against our own best interest, so why not leave it to an institution that much more savvy at this kind of thing? After the media has decided who wil be the leader of the free world, we can all sit back and relax and enjoy life.

Everyone wins. The media has done the populace a huge favor by taking the work(thinking) out of the process, and the people can just work and do what they're told to do. If a problem should arise, the media can enroll the help of one of the three government departments (President, Supreme Court, Congress) to clear up any dissent.

We will all sleep better at night, and the country will prosper so much we will not recognize it or ourselves.

Posted by: cassandra s | September 8, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

This is all a big moosetake. The candidates are moosing-in-action. Mooset I go on.

Posted by: Kerric | September 8, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Let me start by saying that I did not read MoDo, and may not get to it.

Fifty, consider the idea that young Mr. Palin might be running against Chelsea Clinton for the Presidency.

I suspect that there's no one her age better prepared to serve in any of the branches of government, and I think that will continue to be the case for a long time. Having said that, I would not be at all surprised if she Knew Too Much, and would not seriously consider executive political office.

Mudge, I'd place the Atlanta Falcons in that list of First NFL Weekend surprises. Course, I'd add Oakland rising up and smiting Denver in the late MNF game tonight as another huge shocker, should it happen. The early game - Minn vs. GB - should be a goodie.

Now, as for the all-important MNF "Are You Ready for Some Football?" bits, I suspect you'll see someone from the GOP ticket doing the Minnesota game and someone from the Dem ticket doing the Denver game, maybe recorded at some point over the last couple of weeks...

But that's pure speculation on my part.


Posted by: bc | September 8, 2008 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Just heard from a cousin in Alaska who is voting for Obama.

Posted by: TBG | September 8, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

*whew* So at least it won't be a shut-out.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Cassandra, you crack me up. But you're right, it would be much easier for us regular folks if the media did the job for us.

Posted by: slyness | September 8, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

TBG: Did I post that? Or did I just think that? Eeeek!!

bc: I'd have woven the Clinton family into that tale, but I've exhausted my pop culture knowledge already!

Posted by: Fifty | September 8, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Fifty... were you around these parts when Cow Town was spinning his fanciful yarns? Where's he been lately, anyway?

Posted by: TBG | September 8, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

You guys are all forgetting the official Clinton-Bush Tag Team Dynasty:

Hillary not getting nominated is going to make it tougher to implement but she'll find a way. If she were elected president pro tempore of the Senate, where would that place her in the line of succession?

I don't see a Palin Dynasty happening anytime soon. Track isn't eligible until 2028, which is five terms away. Besides, once Alaska secedes and joins OPEC, he won't qualify as a citizen.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Cassandra, I think your idea is very reasonable. We've already had the Supreme Court decide one election, and a lot of people got unhappy. The media is much larger, offers a wider spectrum of perspectives, and has more to lose if we think they're wrong. [After all, what were we going to do, boycott the Supreme Court?]

This will leave citizens free to concentrate on the important things in life. Didn't someone say football season has started? I'm sure curling is just around the corner.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse


It's official, Brady's knee goes under the knife and he's out for the season.


Posted by: Scottynuke | September 8, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

two kits and two and a half boodles behind.

How about them Eagles. Didn't watch the game, but now wish I had.

Posted by: omni | September 8, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Those Boston College Eagles fell to the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets.

What's that?

You mean there's a different set of Eagles?


Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

mebee I should have said Iggles to avoid confusion...sorry yello

Philly beat St. Louis Rams 38-3

Posted by: omni | September 8, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Here's James Carroll's, author of Constantine's Sword, take on John McCain. Remember that his father was a general.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 8, 2008 3:43 PM | Report abuse

omni, I always use "Iggles" myself to avoid exactly that confusion. Helluva game, BTW. I don't think McNabb ever looked better--clearly fully healthy, relaxed, confident.

I didn't watch the Dallas game, but have a suspicion the division is gonna be a fight between the Iggles and Dallas. (At least, you-know-who won't be a contendah.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

I forgot to add the article!

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 8, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

I'm surprised that nobody has yet mentioned that UofF Gator Alumnus Camilo Villegas won his first PGA tour event yesterday. But then again maybe I'm the only person here who would rather watch golf than football.

Posted by: Kerric | September 8, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Ummph. That column had a pretty devastating punchline, Maggie. And I didn't see it coming because for the first half of the column I had no idea where Carroll was going. But I think he got the psychology exactly right.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Kerric, we can arrange an intervention, if necessary.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 4:11 PM | Report abuse

LA Lurker,
Howard Wolfson with TNR agrees with you about the use of "cat fight":

Consider it scratched from my politically correct boodle approved vocabulary.

Posted by: Mo MoDo | September 8, 2008 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Kerric: Villegas is not just a UF alumnus, but, although born in Colombia, counts Gainesville as his home town - he now lives in Jupiter,Fl, but regularly returns to his home town-also Joel's. Many Gators are not avid golf watchers.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Kerric, I saw Villegas' victory yesterday. It was impressive how he went for it on the 18th vs. playing conservatively. And he seemed to be in one of those Tiger-esque zones of pure concentration and nerves of steel.

We were doing the ADHDTV thing golf, tennis, and NASCAR yesterday (watching the football scores on the crawlers).

Posted by: Raysmom | September 8, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Next on Mythbusters: Do tinfoil hats REALLY keep those mind-control rays out of Buster's simulacrum head? Tune in!

Posted by: Jumper | September 8, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Jumper, one of my nephew's fishing buddies asked for some tinfoil Saturday. I asked him if he was going to make a hat. He looked puzzled and said they needed it because they were going fishing and would use it to cook the fish. I didn't bother to explain the hat.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 8, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Kerris I watched the golf as well.

Posted by: dmd | September 8, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

I should add to Cassandra's suggestion that media should relieve us from the burden of voting.

Let's also follow the Comoros example ca 1980. Allow only people the age bellow 18 to run the government.

Posted by: Brag | September 8, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

I wanted everyone with their hats in place first.

Posted by: Jumper | September 8, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Will need to backboodle to catch up but from the last kit:

Eidrib -- boolya on the job.

To all celebrating the Holy Gridiron faith, good for you but I adhere lightly to the real football world, AKA the beautiful game. But I love your joy at this. So go commune often and keep all the sacred rituals. Invite me over for good food.

About Fanny Mae I have a friend who is a chef in one of the dining rooms. She is relieved at the emerging clarity in the chaos. She has been cooking up comfort book there.

The bison butt is priceless. I have seen them in the wild. Best occasions were winter in Yellowstone.

Glad for those here who care about golf and tennis and etc. ModAlien -- watch out for dr, because she may convert you into watching curling. Better still, she will teach you how to play. I swear, we will have a Western Canada boodle event on ice yet.

Perhaps for Capt. Chuckles and ModAlien and fifty we could have a roll call. AND JA, how about some science relief from the national stage stuff?

Posted by: College Parkian | September 8, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Chelsea Clinton' rise to the presidency would have a compelling background story: growing up in public housing in Arkansas and the District of Columbia. Coming of age in a household rife with strangers and rummors of strangers. Surrounded by booze-swilling, womenizing musicians. And raised by an unemployed working mother.
Her ascension would epitomise the American Dream.
What's not to like?

Posted by: Nitrophillia | September 8, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

College Parkian

Mom of 3; two over 18

One poodle-doggy of heart and unclipped cuteness;

Addicted to gardening, reading, fabric and yarn.

Last fiction book read: George Pelecanos' The Turnaround. I recommend this local fave.

Three favorite series, which I reread each year: Larry McMurtry's Lonesome Dove, Sigrid Unset's Kristen Lavransdottir and Axe series, and Mario Puzzo's Godfather in any format, including all three movies.

Am related to F.S. Fitzgerald, dead guy, and Colm Toibin, living guy. Bet you have read Scotty. Do read Colm. The Blackwater Lighthouse is quite good.

I teach composition at UMCP. I am a perpetual graduate student with interests in science and environmental rhetoric.

Bike commuter, which is possible weatherwise in MD. Miss the starry skies and Northern lights of my Montana childhood. Hope to play passable accordion someday.

Posted by: College Parkian ROLL CALL | September 8, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

I am so sorry for your loss, Scottynuke. Poor thing.

Kerric--my husband watches golf matches during football commercials. I can't win. So I either watch, read or go to another TV...or blog.

Posted by: eidrib | September 8, 2008 6:13 PM | Report abuse

But that Camilo is a cutie I must say.

Posted by: eidrib | September 8, 2008 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Okay fine.

RD Padouk

Married with daughter 14 and son 17. I have no idea what a normal child is like.

I have a yippy Cairn Terrier and two psychotic bunnies who live in my basement. They are my special friends.

I am a compulsive reader. I also like to make little wooden art boxes despite a conspicuous lack of talent.

I tend to remember every film I have seen but not what I had for dinner.

I work for a government agency with three initials. I do mysterious secret science stuff so secret that I must keep the truth even from myself. I have, at last count, 5 computers in my cubical that I keep busy at all times. They are my special friends.

I am related to nobody famous. Outside of my children I have no blood relatives this side of the Cascade Mountains.

I used to be very good at playing the piano despite having never really learned to sightread music.

I live in the heartland of Suburbia where I keep busy with yardwork and a modest garden. The yard has two Concord grape vines clinging to a trellis I built after having been inspired by the flying buttresses of the Cathedral of Notre Dame. Few others see the resemblance. I also grow tomatoes because it is a genetic imperative that I do so. They are my special friends.

I don't get out much.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 8, 2008 6:39 PM | Report abuse

I don't understand why the Democrats always seem to allow the opposition to define themselves. Kerry and the Swiftboaters. McCain is always saying Obama will raise taxes. Sebatian Mallaby makes some excellent points in his column today. And I quote:

"Obama is not proposing to raise taxes for most Americans. To the contrary, he would triple the earned-income tax credit for low-wage earners, increasing work incentives at the bottom. He would cut taxes on people in the middle -- indeed, he would do so more aggressively than McCain would. It is only the wealthiest Americans who would face higher tax bills under Obama."

Why isn't there a campaign manager out there who can see how that would resonate in a 30-second spot? It's extremely frustrating to sit back and watch the incompetency of message.

Kristen Lavrensdattir is an awesome read. Won the 1928 Nobel Prize in literature. One walks away from it somewhat stricken, dazed and astonished.

Posted by: rhy | September 8, 2008 6:43 PM | Report abuse

This explains oh so much.

rhy - I think you are spot on.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 8, 2008 6:48 PM | Report abuse

RHY -- Son of Carl the Canadian and parodian here read KL after hearing about her on the blog. A friend who hoped to spent her sabbatical in Norway studying Sigrid Undset did not get the fellowship. For consolation, we will read parts of the novels out load with other fans. We will have glog and other Nordic comestibles!

And, if RDP the well-tempered wiseman of the A-blog agrees with you, then huzzah.

Posted by: College Parkian ROLL CALL | September 8, 2008 6:55 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Wile E Coyote | September 8, 2008 7:08 PM | Report abuse

Great school registration form in today's NY Times. I especially love the "Note to new PTA parents" at the bottom...

Posted by: TBG | September 8, 2008 7:25 PM | Report abuse

A lot of special friends there, RD! I wouldn't get out much either with all that to keep me busy.

Posted by: Wilbrodog | September 8, 2008 7:42 PM | Report abuse

All righty.

Ivansmom. Married to Ivansdad, mom to the Boy, 12, who sometimes posts here under his own handle ("the Boy"). Collectively we are the Ivansclan.

We have a black Lab who lives in his own 2-acre paradise outside, and a sweet and curious bunny, Beatrice, who lives inside. She helps me. She also chews on things.

I read a lot. I am addicted to mysteries, but will read almost anything, including manga. I have found several good books from Boodle recommendations.

I like to cook. I am passionately fond of tomatoes in season and, in October, freeze fresh roasted green chilies for use year-round. I help Ivansdad manage an ecosystem which is tolerant of our efforts to keep it reasonably presentable. I attempt a vegetable garden every year with pitiful results, but I am stubborn.

I am a lawyer and work for a court. I am very familiar with criminal law, but never as a defendant. I also sing a lot. I do way too much civic work. I play the piano reasonably well and the guitar badly. Like college parkian, I hope to learn accordion someday. The remainder of the Ivansclan fervently discourages this hope.

I refer to the Boodle as my Imaginary Friends, to the vast amusement of real people.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 7:55 PM | Report abuse

Wilbroddog, cover your eyes when you read this Wikipedia entry on


I want YOU to jack up the wimpy loldogs phenom.

Readers of the blog who are FSM-minded my especially chuckle at the section about the Ceiling Cat (all seeing, all knowing uber cat aka GOD) and the Basement Cat, who is a Lucifer-kitty, 'natch.

RDP -- you can market the lolbunny version to a select few and perhaps earn enough money to retire in the Cascades.

TBG -- thanks for NYTimes link. Very funny and more true that we would care for....

Posted by: College Parkian | September 8, 2008 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom, you too? Oh my. But, actually the accordion is the piano of cowboys. So we western gals would like this instruments of our childhoods. But, I do not feel like I need a jacket with red leather fringe...yet.

Here is an image for you:

Posted by: College Parkian | September 8, 2008 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Reattempting this post - last one disappeared into cyber space.


Married - 3 children, 13, 7, 4 (one of which is a step child).

One very large over active mutt (shepherd/collie/husky), sheds year round with heavy shedding in the summer.

Love to read but find it hard to get the time to do so right now, I like long uninterupted time to read - that doesn't happen much right now.

Last two books I really enjoyed, A Spot of Bother - Mark Haddon, rather odd tale of a disfunctional British family and Carl Haisen (sp) A Downhill Lie - a great book for golfers. Currently about 3-4 books on the go - comedy/death and disfunctional families are my current themes although I love history books as well.

Love gardening.

Work for a not-for-profit association.

Hockey Mom

Goal in life - to figure out a goal in life.

Posted by: dmd | September 8, 2008 8:09 PM | Report abuse

Pardon, oh dear boodlers, the accordian thingie between Ivansmom and me:

Posted by: College Parkian | September 8, 2008 8:10 PM | Report abuse

RD and Ivansmom

I certainly hope you consider me as one of your dear friends. I love reading your comments, although I may have to distance myself if you seriously start playing the accordion(smile).

Just finish helping a kid read better. Time to turn in. Have a good evening, folks. Night, boodle. Sweet dreams.

Posted by: cassandra s | September 8, 2008 8:12 PM | Report abuse

Thank you college parkian for the accordion encouragement. I swear for my 50th birthday (getting closer all the time) I'm going to learn to play and provide concertinas for party guests. The Ivansclan scoff.

Cassandra, you are definitely among my dear friends - not even very imaginary. I look forward to your blessings and your comments. If you've helped a child learn to read better today, you've done more for society than I did.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 8:28 PM | Report abuse

I have a feeling on most days Cassandra does more for society than most of the rest of us. Me for sure.

If you two ever get your accordion mad skilz together, I think we ought to have you audition in front of Wilbrod, and have her report to the rest of us how it went.

(I got ten bucks sez one of 'em plays "There Is a Tavern in the Town.")

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 8:34 PM | Report abuse

Meant to say earlier - that's a shame about the season-ending injury to Pats QB Tom Brady.

To him, his family, friends, fans and team; my sympathies.

I'm sure that he'll be back next year as good as ever...


Posted by: bc | September 8, 2008 8:51 PM | Report abuse

Funny, Mudge. Very funny.

You ever heard tangos on an accordion? Or, in a different realm, Woody Guthrie? great stuff, I say.

When I was about seven, my mom brought home a slightly used accordion which was donated to a charity sale. Though it was really too big for me to lift, much less play, I loved it. One day it disappeared, leaving me unrequited (though much quieter). So, for me, learning the accordion will assuage that yearning planted in me so young and helpless.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Tejano accordian, a Mexican staple, along with Conjunto
is amazing:
(riffs off of Johhny Cash's ring of fire)

And Cajun by Charles Thibodeaux

Posted by: College Parkian | September 8, 2008 9:06 PM | Report abuse

Billy McComiskey, of the once great and now late Irish Tradition (Baltimore)

And the Italian classic, Funiculi, Funicula

Posted by: College Parkian | September 8, 2008 9:10 PM | Report abuse

We kid because we love, Ivansmom.

Actually, IIRC there's some good accordion on Dylan's "Desire" album, and on some (dare I say it?) Billy Joel (Storm Front?).

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 9:11 PM | Report abuse

Yes indeedy Mudge. Thanks college parkian for the other accordion examples. We'll convert these heathen yet.

Time to take the ailing Boy off to an early bed. Fondue. Vaya con queso. Buenos gnocchis.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 8, 2008 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Nanci Griffith covers Bob Dylan's Boots of Spanish Leather, with nice piano accordian by Donnie Shaw

Posted by: College Parkian | September 8, 2008 9:17 PM | Report abuse

Button box or concertina by Ernestine Healy

Shall stop now. Sigh. What do we call it when you find on the boodle one other who shares your odd little box canyon of joy?

Sleep tight and may angels play softly on the accordion genre of your choice.

Posted by: College Parkian | September 8, 2008 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Ahem. I have you both beat, CP and Ivansmom. I have actually played accordion. My older half-brother was a gifted musician as well as a wonderful teacher, and I took lessons from him, when I was in the second and third grades. He had a quartet of little girls and we used to go around and play simple melodies.

I'm sure I couldn't do it today, but that's where I got my start with music.

Darn it, I read all the time, and I never can remember what new books I've consumed. Dorothy Sayers and a biography of C.S. Lewis are on the nightstand right now, but they are rereads.

Posted by: slyness | September 8, 2008 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Not that anybody asked but here are my vital stats:

Married for 22 years and 2 days to my high-school sweetheart.

My eighteen-year-old son is attending my alma mater.

My English cocker-spaniel died in November and I still miss him.

My hobbies included bicycling, book collecting, photography and anything you can do with a computer that strikes my fancy.

I've lived in HoCo, MD for twelve years but as an Air Force brat I have lived in Virginia, the Philippines, and Florida (more times than I cared to).

I'm an engineer by training and temperament, just not particularly mechanically inclined.

I have a blog with over 600 posts where you can learn more about me than anybody really should know.

Oh, and I'm a natural redhead. Just to make sure this spills over into the TMI territory.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 9:32 PM | Report abuse

Ah yes. The accordion. A musical instrument that will always be associated with my childhood in the Pacific Northwest and that timeless showman, Stan Boreson.

And his two cute little basset hounds.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 8, 2008 9:33 PM | Report abuse

A torn ACL is about the only thing Tom Brady and I will ever have in common. I wish him a speedy recovery. I'm sure he's going to get a lot more attention paid to his than I got to mine. Not that I'm complaining, but mine still doesn't feel the same. I call it the zombie knee.

See, I told you that blog had more info than anyone needed to know.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 9:40 PM | Report abuse

Weird Al plays a pretty mean rock accordion solo.

And his first television appearance:

That pretty much exhausts my accordion expertise.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 8, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Fifty: increasingly inaccurate age approximation

Long-time married. We have no kids but we do like them.

Quantity one: six year old Border Terrier.

Software developer for a small company.

We live in a small town that's part of the large, indistinguishable wash of suburbia on the San Francisco peninsula. Our town excels in hair and nail salons.

Interested in piano, photography, absurdism (I will keep that to a minimum here), good writing, and evaluation of information. I use too many prepositional phrases.

I can't explain why but the LOLcat thing tickles me. There was a project to translate the entire Bible into LOLcat.

NPR ran a piece last weekend that explained why English spelling reform is doomed: we use phonetic spelling to mock uneducated folks and cats without the gift of language.

Posted by: Fifty | September 8, 2008 9:50 PM | Report abuse

"What do we call it when you find on the boodle one other who shares your odd little box canyon of joy?"


Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 9:52 PM | Report abuse

I sure picked the right year to emotionally distance myself from Patriots football. After the game that will not be mentioned last year I swore that I would never let a ‘game’ get to me like that again. I wasn’t even watching yesterday but “S” told me about it. It’s all over our local news, they’re showing people actually crying, jeepers.

yello, my daughter is feeling that zombie thing too. She calls it her alien knee. I’ve got my fingers crossed that she’s walking ok by the wedding.

Accordions! There is no end to the suprises here. I’d love to learn the banjo, but I suppose I should get back to piano lessons first. Maybe when I retire.

Cassandra, I concure with what others have said, you do so much good for others, I am in awe of you.

Posted by: Bad Sneakers | September 8, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Banjo!! Bad, I took banjo lessons for a year or two, in my mid-teens. Used to play along with Kingston Trio albums (I was awful).

Do *not* want to discuss 6th grade, when I caused myself some serious brain damage (oxygen deprivation) playing the trumpet. Had a whopping headache after every single stinkin' lesson. (And the velvet-lined trumpet case had this funky, equally headache-inducing new-trumpet-case smell. Anybody else remember that smell?)

I'm even mediocre (on my best day) on the air guitar, alas.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 10:25 PM | Report abuse

If they give ME accordion lessons, I'll give them all the thumbs-up needed, Mudge.

I've always wanted to do the hurdy-gurdy, even if it's hardy-hurty on people's ears.

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 8, 2008 10:32 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, I DO know that squeaky-new smell of trumpet cases filled with stale resin and brass sweat.

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 8, 2008 10:35 PM | Report abuse

The Kingston Trio Mudge! That’s where I learned to love the banjo! One of my first dates with “S” involved sitting on my sofa singing along with the boys. I’m not sure which one of us was more impressed that the other knew all the lyrics.

Posted by: Bad Sneakers | September 8, 2008 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Fifty, thanks for bringing up that spelling reform story. I found the longer article it was based on:

I may have to use it in my linguistics class. Good for talking about phonetics, and about sociolinguistics, and about psycholinguistics (specifically, dyslexia). Good stuff!

Posted by: bia | September 8, 2008 10:40 PM | Report abuse

I didn't back-boodle too far but enough to comment that my aunt plays the accordian (or did--she is now 87) and used to play a tune or two when we had family gatherings while we sang along. I played the violon in grade school following the steps of my mother and grandnmother. Played the piano too.

I just finished The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch--very good advice. I'm also reading In The Land of Invisible Women by Qanta A. Ahmed, MD. Very eye-opening about the life of women in Saudi Arabia. The abaya is deceiving.

Posted by: eidrib | September 8, 2008 10:43 PM | Report abuse

married: to Mr. F mom to Frostdottir soon to be 19 and Frostson 31
Small town mayor with international experience, have alerted townsfolk that being honest about the teen pregnancy and "oft married" part of the bio is ok when the vetting calls come.
Live with Frostcats 2-4, #1 died recently, #4's real life name is Kuching (named by rainforest, right here on the boodle). Also have a guinea pig named Kisses II.
Reading: Caro's volume III on LBJ _Master of the Senate_
Spend every June fully celebrating Accordion Appreciation Month

Posted by: frostbitten | September 8, 2008 10:47 PM | Report abuse

Two things I know about the accordion: There is a group (or was) in San Francisco called "Those Darned Accordions," who interrupted civic meetings with accordion serenades; and the book, Accordion Crimes, by Annie Proulx, which I enjoyed very much.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 8, 2008 10:48 PM | Report abuse

In my fifties, sci/tech/IT geek, married, no children, a reluctant Christian of some sort, an even more reluctant Redskins fan. Taken as a whole, these things probably say it all... Now back to lurking... poof!

Posted by: Woofin | September 8, 2008 10:50 PM | Report abuse

bia: thanks for the link!

Curmudgeon: "they" made me play the trombone at that age. I sure do remember that awful smell and having no aptitude for it.

TBG: yes! now I remember Cow Town. I had forgotten about him until your mention.

Posted by: Fifty | September 8, 2008 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Which songs? My all-time pickin' favorite was the "Shady Grove/Lonesome Traveler" medley from the "From the Hungry i" album, followed by South Coast and New York Girls. (Love their "They Call the Wind Mariah" but it ain't much for the banjo.) And of course "When the Saints Go Marching In" from that album is pure banjo-pickin' ecstasy. "Billy Goat Hill" and "Hard, Ain't It Hard" were also good banjo tunes.

To this day I know every lyric from every song. Makes my wife nuts, cuz I sing 'em when I put the double album CD in the car player when we're on long road trips. But I figure 90 minutes of me singing the Kingstons is perfectly fair revenge for her making me listen to two or three hours of effing Trace Adkins, or Randy "Deviated Septum" Travis, or whichever whiny, nasal C&W tenor she's made me listen to.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 8, 2008 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Hello, my name is mostlylurking and I am an Achenaddict. I am also an accordion-phobe. Who knew there were so many accordion lovers here?!? I have mentioned before my childhood next door to the Sons of Italy club, where they played polkas non-stop. I once took saxophone lessons from a guy who also taught accordion (shudder). Not to mention Lawrence Welk (Please! I grew up with one TV and 3 channels! I had to watch!). Zydeco is ok, bits where I can't tell if it's an accordion or something else, fine. Otherwise, let's move on to the banjo...Thank you.

Fifty, nice to have another left-coaster here (I'm in Seattle, my kid is in Oakland now).

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 8, 2008 10:58 PM | Report abuse

woofin..."a reluctant Christian of some sort..." Me too!

Posted by: eidrib | September 8, 2008 11:01 PM | Report abuse

Hi, mostlylurking!

Posted by: Fifty | September 8, 2008 11:05 PM | Report abuse

Actually, as mentioned, the accordian always reminds me of growing up with Lawrence Welk and his bubbles. Are we old or what. Don't answer that.

Mostly, my parents bought a small second TV for their bedroom (rare in the early 60's) and we kids (the 4 of us) would sneak in to their room after bedtime to very quietly watch one of the three B&W of course.

Posted by: eidrib | September 8, 2008 11:10 PM | Report abuse

51, to my amazement.
HS science teacher, Dead Head.
Married for 16 years, three children, daughters aged 16 and 13, son, 8. All are fortunate to not have inherited my nose.
2nd gen "Merican, grandfathers from 'Derry (Irish Protesant), and Trier, Luxembourg (Catholic).
8 dogs: 2 show, 4 bark, 2 guard the house.
Restoring our house, competent carpenter, electrician and marginal at plumbing, coach soccer, serve on the City Historic preservation committee. Drink too much coffee, owned too many VW's. Almost voted for Gus Hall and Angela Davis in 1980. Reconsidered when I thought I might have my very own file. Cubs fan. Indians fan. Browns fan. Orange fan. Perennial disappointment.

Posted by: jack | September 8, 2008 11:22 PM | Report abuse

Why am I thinking of CP and Ivansmom serenading a BPH with "Dueling Accordions?"

Tail of the Tape (ahem)
Age: younger than Curmudgeon
Height: too much for my weight
Weight: not enough for my height
Reach: typically beyond my grasp
Hair: in places, some of them I even want
Eyes: Still seem to be working reasonably well. Have not been gouged out yet, by myself or anyone else.
Experience: Three daughters, and several evenings that have firmly convinced me to stay away from tequila
Employment: Preferable to not
Last Seen Wearing: Skimpy leather strappy Gladiator outfit with 4" heeled sandals, and a liberal coating of olive oil. And a goofy smile.


Posted by: bc | September 8, 2008 11:30 PM | Report abuse

You neglected to mention your affection for the automobile, bc.

Posted by: jack | September 8, 2008 11:46 PM | Report abuse

*So that's who that well-oiled man was...*

I'm a gnome and all out of the cupboard, but that was just to move up to a roomy walk-in closet.

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 8, 2008 11:47 PM | Report abuse

Thank you for linking to that Spelling Bee article. It was fascinating.

A word new to me: kakistocracy, “which means government by the worst people possible.

Remind you of anything?

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 9, 2008 12:05 AM | Report abuse

Seconding Maggie O'D-- dat spelin be artiikl wuz kwiit interestinj an colorful.

But as I don't have to speak the bludy tung, I like English orthography "as is".

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 9, 2008 12:11 AM | Report abuse

Vitae: Florida native, retired community organizer, semi-active consultant (planning, management, development), widower, son 40, B.A. Fairfield, M.A. YDS, (former SJ, Trappist and Zen adherent), lived in AZ, CA, CT, DC, FL, GA, KY, NY and Korea (US Army), 2nd Generation American: 2 Russian, 1 Italian via Argentine, and 1 Polish immigrant grandparents, 6 cats, 1 resident nephew + his 20-something friends, enjoy cooking, gardening, friends and day trading on PC. Social liberal, fiscal conservative, political anti-fascist. Capricorn, share Alexander Hamilton's birthday (day, not year), prefer classical piano, opera and Haydn symphonies, enjoy Janis Joplin, Stevie Nicks, Eagles and "classical" country music, abhor heavy metal, rap and that other crap nephew and friends listen to endlessly, tolerate accordion, remember Lawrence Welk, Kate Smith and Dinah Shore from TV, but have not watched TV at home for over 25 years. Avocation: perfecting 50 year art/antique collection by disposing of collection through gifts to family, friends, etc. Provided for final self-disposal by cremation and provided funds in will for post-termination party, date TBA, at Annie's Cafe' Cedar Key, FL or such other place as may be determined by administrator of estate. Presently in fairly good health, considering age, so don't hold your breath waiting, I'm younger than McCain. Ars longa, vita brevis.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 9, 2008 2:37 AM | Report abuse

Feeling mysterious today, so I won't add to the roll call.

But can I get one of those jobs where I get a per diem for staying home?

Posted by: dbG | September 9, 2008 2:59 AM | Report abuse

I played the accordion (poorly) for a few years. Switched to larger (piano/organ) and smaller (harmonica) canvasses at some point. Fun stuff!

Posted by: Bob S. | September 9, 2008 3:15 AM | Report abuse

Congrats on the new job, eidrib.

Welcome to all the new boodlers.

If I go to a certain part of the country, I’d come across a lot of buffalo backsides. I always make sure to avoid those areas at night. They don’t like it if you ram into their backsides.

Our deputy PM (veep equivalent) don’t have very much to do so he was made Defence Minister. A small percentage of any hardware purchase made by the defence department is quite a lot. But that is commission, of course, not corruption. A defence minister's job is pretty relaxing cuz the country is not under attack. That leaves plenty of time to womanize.

Posted by: rainforest | September 9, 2008 3:19 AM | Report abuse

Oh, were we doing bio's? I missed that part.

I'm a self-involved pushing-fifty Georgia redneck, been around a little.

I think that covers it, yes?

Posted by: Bob S. | September 9, 2008 3:20 AM | Report abuse

rainforest... Sounds like great work if you can get it! But those jobs often end up being more complicated than was promised.

Posted by: Bob S. | September 9, 2008 3:22 AM | Report abuse

First the LOLcats, then the accordionphiles. But the smell of a trumpet case made it all worthwhile. I laughed, I cried, I blew out the spit valve.

Posted by: Jumper | September 9, 2008 3:51 AM | Report abuse

Vit B12 helps memory. I’m going to load myself with it.

Posted by: rainforest | September 9, 2008 4:02 AM | Report abuse

I forgot the notes
The smell of a trumpet case.
your fingers still know

Posted by: Anonymous | September 9, 2008 4:05 AM | Report abuse

Hi, Anonymous. Love your all your haiku.

Posted by: rainforest | September 9, 2008 4:22 AM | Report abuse

That was my haiku. I would hate to make the real Anonymous look bad.

Posted by: Jumper | September 9, 2008 4:31 AM | Report abuse

Good night Rainforest. I hardly ever am here when you are. :)

Posted by: Jumper | September 9, 2008 4:34 AM | Report abuse

Goodmorning! I'm DandyLion. I've never milked a cow. I've got 4 kids attending 3 different schools and never have a problem falling asleep anytime, anywhere. Lived in darkness for the last 18 years. Played viola and electric guitar through HS. After I hit Submit, I'll pick up my Les Paul, play for a few minutes, water the tomato plants on the deck and get ready to take a bus and 2 Metro trains to work.

I'm also looking forward to the MBPH in less than a month.

Posted by: DandyLion | September 9, 2008 5:17 AM | Report abuse

Dawn Patrol duty is getting easier and easier. I've been going on 7.5 mile rides in the morning as soon as the first ray of light hits. I may have to jump the gun for a couple of weeks. I may put on my reflective construction site safety vest for good measure.

There's a great line in Zodiac about biking in the dark that goes to the effect of this:

"You can't assume they see you."

"Oh, I assume they can and they're aiming for me."

Posted by: yellojkt | September 9, 2008 5:51 AM | Report abuse

Alo les Boodleurs!
Early take off this morning. Pretty decent article by Ignatius.

Seems like the American media is beginning to accept notion that Saakashvili is a thug.

But I doubt that the knee jerk demonizing of Medvedev & Putin is over.

Posted by: Brag | September 9, 2008 5:56 AM | Report abuse

Bob S, you made me laugh out loud.

Posted by: dbG | September 9, 2008 6:09 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle. Pretty good Packers game last night; could barely catch the start of the Denver game.

Very good Robinson column this morning, good Dionne and good Cohen (critical of Obama).

Palin's got herself involved in a financial scandal, but it seems it was legal (if unseemly). Don't know yet whether it will pick up traction. It seems the response is gonna be: she was less irresponsible than most other Republican governors, who were worse. Not exactly a ringing endorsement.

The Woodward series has been excellent (if not heading-shaking, but that part isn't Bob's fault).

Gotta run. yellow's already up (and doing disgusting things with his bicycle). C'mon, Scotty, Cassandra, Brag.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 9, 2008 6:13 AM | Report abuse

Ooops, Brag snuck in while I was composing. Sorry, Brag.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 9, 2008 6:14 AM | Report abuse

'morning all. Hannah's here. Wet Puppy. Wet Ancient Old Lab. Wet Shriek. All that water we could fax to someone who really needs it. *sigh*

Posted by: shrieking denizen | September 9, 2008 6:19 AM | Report abuse

The scariest part of my ride was before I got on the bike. Usually I open the garage, set my bike outside and then take my water bottle inside to fill it. This morning when I opened the garage door there was a trio of thuggish looking teenagers wandering the neighborhood a good hour before the school bus. Instead of taking my bike out, I closed the garage door behind me.

When I opened the garage door again, they were on the other side of the road leaning against some cars. I went back in, again closing the garage door. I went to the kitchen to get my phone (which I should have had on me anyways). I turned off the kitchen light and watched them. They stood around for another minute and then wandered off.

At the end of my ride a half hour later, one of them was lounging in the grass with a girl. The other two were still wandering aimlessly.

I assume they go to the local school, but I don't go pass the bus stop at the right time anymore to know who the regulars are.

I guess CP's tale of having her bike stolen off her car has made me paranoid. Perhaps justifiably so.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 9, 2008 7:08 AM | Report abuse

SCC: past

Posted by: yellojkt | September 9, 2008 7:11 AM | Report abuse

Good morning you all. I read Cohen, that's it so far, Woodward's series is on my listofthingstoreadbeforeitgoesaway. After first light, we are treated to a warm, soft little breeze, forecast for something stronger later on. Shriek, we can use your rain, thanks.

I'm on a library waiting list for The Shack, last nonfiction was Dreams From My Father, not too big on political biographies, unless they are actually written by the person.

A few books I reread periodically, To Kill A Mocking Bird is a good example. Always note any books recommended by boodlers, Dorothy L. Sayers via slyness was a real find for me.

Oh, almost forgot, I played french horn in jr. high & high school band, the only girl, seven boys on that noble instrument. Spit valve was yucky, tho. :-)

Posted by: VintageLady | September 9, 2008 7:12 AM | Report abuse

Morning folks...

Fifty years old, married for 25 of those, two kids 15 and 19. Live two miles from where I grew up but in a completely different world from what it was back then.

Very close to my three sisters, one of whom lives on my street (I also named my daughter after her).

Current reading passion is then-popular novels from the 1920s; favorite such writer is Ruby M Ayres. Books acquired cheaply from antique malls and used-book stores.

Work for a publishing company, putting out two newsletters named for a man who died two and a half years ago. Have had this perfect part-time job for 16 years now and love pretty much every minute of it (and the people I work with).

Enjoy roadtripping with the family, eschewing interstate highways and even four-lanes if we can help it. Have visited 30 states and two provinces this way and hope to see more.

Have met Boodlers in Florida, Philadelphia, Charlotte, California, Va Beach and Calgary--not to mention here in the DC area. Count many Boodlers among my closest friends.

Posted by: TBG | September 9, 2008 7:37 AM | Report abuse

Age: menopause looms
Kids: all 4-legged. 6 dogs, 3 cats, 1 horse, 1 foster dog (which is #99, I think)
Work: recovering bankruptcy lawyer (11 years sane!), now doing various bank-related stuff (which I leave daily at the door)
Last book: Don Winslow's "Dawn Patrol"
Fave book most recently re-read: "The Plague"
Secret shame: addicted to "House"
Misc: once took my pants off on Main St after a city council meeting upon (painfully) discovering a scorpion in my pocket; travel as often as possible to Philly and NYC to see my fave band, Marah, and the fun crowd that is similarly devoted; former eventer, now agility hopeful; grateful member of an 80-person Lutheran church; currently sweltering in TX, and looking forward to returning to my beloved Minnesota, one day, preferably in the suburbs, not the sticks.

Thanks for the bios, y'all. Sorry about your dog, Yello. I've got 2 on their way out.

Posted by: KPage | September 9, 2008 7:38 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all. Do I really need to introduce myself? Oh, okay.

Eighth generation North Carolinian, Christian of moderate Baptist persuasion. English major, MPA, retired from the local fire department. Well past the half century mark (How the he11 did that happen?). Two grown-up daughters, and I claim the elder's best friend as my third. This allows me to claim to be grandmother to her twin boys, born in April. Married to Mr. T, who still works for the fire department, bless his poor little heart. Currently have two full-time jobs: to keep fresh water in the birdbath and to keep the weeds and sticks picked and out of the yard. Did I mention that I loved being retired? I love to read and am an Achenaddict.

Posted by: slyness | September 9, 2008 7:39 AM | Report abuse

Mornin' all...

Yello... I like mornings and all, but that kind of physical activity is a wee bit too ambitious for me.

As for those thugs, you could practice your John McCain impersonation and yell at them to get the hell off your lawn (or your neighbor's lawn, if that's the case). Heck... they don't even need to be standing on grass.

It's wet here this morning, too. Which means paint and lacquer is going to take forever to dry. I so need a climate-controlled workshop. At least the roof doesn't leak.

I was flipping through some CDs last night and came across Frank Zappa's "Strictly Commercial" and immediately thought of Joel: "Moving to Montana..."

He's not investigating Bigfoot. He's gonna raise him up a crop of dental floss.

Back to watching the paint not dry... and more coffee.

Peace out :-)

Posted by: martooni | September 9, 2008 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Hi, I'm Scottynuke.
Age (chronological): 41
Age (actual): 3.1415
Occupation: Former tank driver, currently being Terminally Misquoted on behalf of a Federal agency
Party Affiliation: See backBoodle
Married to NukeSpouse (why she asked me, I still don't know)
NukeSpawn is 13 (Lawd hep me), NukeQuasiStepSpawn is 22
Three NukeFelines -- PITA, Trouble and RoundCat, all aged somewhere around 6 with varying odds on reaching 7
Last read (non-Boodle): "The Grand Idea" by some obscure WaPo staffer
Last listened to: MP3 player chock full o'rock (& pop & metal & even a little rap & country)

*sorta-out-of-breath Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | September 9, 2008 7:53 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and I, too, love The Kingston Trio. Also The Limelighters!

Posted by: KPage | September 9, 2008 7:54 AM | Report abuse

Canadian, living in the tri-state area.
Forty-five next week.
Married; one stepdaughter; three cats.
Left wing politically, philosophically and socially.
Right wing, defence and goaltender on the ice.
Distrusts Authority, dislikes Big Business, calls Mother too infrequently.
Enjoys physics as described by Chuck Jones.

Posted by: byoolin | September 9, 2008 8:13 AM | Report abuse

Good morning all.

Let's see...I'm old enough to know better, but often there's no sign of that. Three kids..two (Things 1 and 2) voting age, one (Dear Child) just started kindgarten today. (We moved into an unfinished home a few weeks ago in anticipation of school, but a teachers' strike postponed the actual start date to today).

Latest books read...ha! scanned, is more like it. Mostly on restoring historic homes. Recently picked up Steve Martin's autobiography because I needed a laugh. Always seem to have a half dozen books on the nightstand that I'm wading through.

Used to work in Campaigns & Elections (too old for the lifestyle now, and besides, I've been to enough rubber chicken dinners to last a lifetime), current work involves real estate, raising Dear Child, and doing my best to appear sane.

I miss the boodle, but still need to get something beyond a temporary occupancy permit. Back to the dustbin I call a home. Have a happy day all.

Posted by: LostInThought | September 9, 2008 8:13 AM | Report abuse

My paranoia was justified. These thugs car-jacked one of my neighbors as he was taking his two daughters to school. They got two blocks before abandoning the car and fleeing on foot.

I gave a statement to the cop, but since it was too dark for me to see them well, I'm not much use. Another neighbor had seen them in better light and went off with the cop to see if he could identify some kids they picked up.

The cop told me to call 911 for anything suspicious. He answers much lamer "emergencies" than early risers loitering threateningly.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 9, 2008 8:30 AM | Report abuse

HEY LiT!!! *extra-goofy Grover waves for DC*

yello, you know full well you should heed that red flag when your backbrain starts waving it. Glad you and the neighbors are OK.

Posted by: Scottynuke | September 9, 2008 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Squeeze Box (The Who):

Mama's got a squeeze box, Daddy never sleeps at night

Posted by: Anonymous | September 9, 2008 8:39 AM | Report abuse

My fave: La Vie en Rose

Posted by: omni | September 9, 2008 8:41 AM | Report abuse

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Good morning, friends.


No Saint, but love God and Christ.

Old, but not as old as Mudge, with severe hearing impairment.

One daughter, Toni, and three grandchildren, twin boys, Tavon and Traquan, and the g-girl, Jada

Love murder mysteries, and cookbooks, design books. Hardly have time to read.

Retired, but work with children in basic reading and math. Teach two Bible studies, and try to live my religion, don't always make it.

I am totally addicted to the Achenblog, and the group of friends here. I've met Slyness, and Son of G, and want to meet all.

And I am a relic from the 60's. And believe it or not, I am shy.

Morning, Slyness, Martooni, Mudge, Scotty, and all.*waving*
Have a great day, folk. Time to swim.

Posted by: cassandra s | September 9, 2008 8:42 AM | Report abuse

I'm glad to hear that you're ok, yello.

Read Dionne's column. It presents a good arguement the press to do its job.

Posted by: jack | September 9, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

EJ was good today. Richard Cohen missed the mark. He took Obama to task for not swinging at softball lobs Stephenlupagous tossed his way and really laying into McCain.

I saw that interview and came away with the exact opposite opinion. Obama was masterfully dodging and ignoring beanballs thrown at him that George was hoping would goad Barack into charging the mound.

Sorry for the tortured baseball metaphor, but Cohen started it.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 9, 2008 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Hi! I'm middle-aged. Average height, average weight with medium brown eyes. I have medium brown hair with a little gray setting in and losing a little on top.

I've drink in moderation, live in the mid-Atlantic region in middle income suburban neighborhoods with my spouse, 1 dog, 1 cat, and 2.1 children who are exceptionally average.

Posted by: moderate alien | September 9, 2008 9:06 AM | Report abuse

jack, I wouldn't call my car thang an affection as much as an affliction.

Speaking of which..

LIT, you didn't mention your passion for and addiction to quality women's footwear.

And Scottynuke, yours for Boston-area sports franchises.


Posted by: bc | September 9, 2008 9:08 AM | Report abuse

yello: Gotta go with your gut. There was a woman being interviewed recently who said she was really creeped out by a guy who came in to her shop just as it was closing. But she did the good-girl thing and made nice. Paid for it by being brutally raped. Writer was making the point, woman often ignore their inner voice in an effort to conform.

Posted by: rhy | September 9, 2008 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Lots of book talk this morning!

Me: Older than Mudge
Monarchist when not in anarchist mode.
Profession: ex this, ex that.
Present occupation: scribbler.
Part of my secret life revealed on the back cover of my book KINGMAKER, you can look it up by visiting Amazon --key words: Kingmaker Braguine

Posted by: Brag | September 9, 2008 9:14 AM | Report abuse


What is understood doesn't need to be discussed, right? :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | September 9, 2008 9:17 AM | Report abuse

New kit.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 9, 2008 9:23 AM | Report abuse

yello... may I add to those who say good for you for going with your gut. I hope no one was hurt and that the thugs are caught.

I am one who is ready for the Obama campaign to turn it on. I get emails every day from them deriding this McCain statement or that Palin claim, but I don't think they'll get far by preaching to the choir.

Posted by: TBG | September 9, 2008 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Morning boodle, nice to have a refresher on the boodle bios. Byoolin got me going with his right wing tendencies.

I did not see the Stephanopoulus interview, but after reading Cohen I think yello has it right. I think in the blinding light of Palin's celebrity the reps are missing the "you can't make stuff up" line. Two things I've learned in my brief, and micro level, experience in politics is that people don't like to hear the word "lie" or "stupid" even when applied to someone else and true. "You can't make stuff up" will go down quite pleasantly and believably. It's like Obama is using the A-11 football offense
Palin and McCain stick with the same plays to the usual receivers, while Obama makes them spread out the defense with every voter in play all the time.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 9, 2008 9:25 AM | Report abuse

TBG, for some strange reason our cable provider is piping in Detroit stations of the major TV networks, so we get the Michigan campaign ads. Obama is sponsoring one showing a series of pictures of McC and W embracing each other (John looks like the much older brother) and it concludes by McC saying “I voted with W more than 90% of the time.”
It does too thing, shows McCain age and associates him closely with W.

Posted by: shrieking denizen | September 9, 2008 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Morning All.
I was thinking along the same lines as frosti when I heard Sen Obama say, "You just can't make stuff up."
Maybe the 'boodle can help the Obama campaign by coming up with cutsie ways of saying lying.

I submit:
Having another Pinocchio moment.

Oh yeah. Avoid sighing.

Posted by: Boko999 | September 9, 2008 9:51 AM | Report abuse

you fishing out there?

Posted by: Norm | September 9, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

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