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Booze Or Alien Abduction?

Last week I heard Al Michaels on Sunday Night Football plug the new alien-abduction movie "The Fourth Kind" with some remark about it being based on real events. Seems to me that, no matter whether NBC is getting paid to promote a movie, a journalist shouldn't give cover to what is quite simply a hoax. The moviemakers want people to think that this is essentially a documentary. The abductions took place in a remote Alaskan town where alcoholism runs rampant and, according to a local paper, people sometimes just wander off into the night and are never seen again. The bottle, mixed with despair, seems to me a more likely explanation than midnight abduction by beings from another

But maybe I'm just saying that because I'm under orders from my master, Zartoog of Eta Carina.



The GOP makes a big fuss about the size of the House health care bill and whether anyone will have time to read it. But this bill was introduced in draft form in July. This is now Halloween Eve. There have been changes along the way, but by Hill standards this is a very familiar piece of legislation at this point. It looks like some form of health care reform will actually be signed by the president before the end of the year -- a remarkable achievement for a do-nothing institution. Lots of people will be unhappy about various aspects of it, but check out the Dingell interview by Ezra Klein: Here's a guy whose Dad started pushing for health care reform in 1943 or something like that. He says this is the farthest that reform has ever gotten.

Check out this great old-school line from Dingell: "The insurance companies will hate it like the devil hates holy water."


Got lots of feedback on my narrative story -- mostly from writer-types. Some readers, too. A few complained that the story was too long to read on their cellphones. Anyway, here's a message from the legendary Joel Garreau, late of the Post's Style section, now another journalistic entrepreneur:

"i've asked myself, do you think that in 20 years people will be paying good money to have stories told to them by professionals. i think the answer almost has to be yes. professional story tellers have been getting the best piece of meat around the campfire for a very long time. if the answer were no, it would be a profound shift in human nature, as you point out.

"the problem is, how do we manage this valley between the collapse of the current business model, and the rise of the next one. it could be a long 10 years. and as bad as that could be for us individually, the real problem is, how do you hold together the clans of professional
truth-tellers, with their expertise, methods, ethics, morals and lore. i sometimes wonder what we could learn from the irish monks of yore."

By Joel Achenbach  |  October 30, 2009; 10:35 AM ET
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Next: My Office, Which Is Mine


the 'pubes are not the sharpest marbles in the bag (have you already forgotten John "senator senility" McCain and that idiot running mate of his?) so having not read the draft that was available since this past July should come as no surprise.

Posted by: spike591011 | October 30, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

There is the old cliche about how law and sausage are made. I'm not particularly squeamish, being a mother, but I would probably avert my eyes, given the chance. However, it would be fun to master the bill so that I could spout expert knowledge at the clueless.

Posted by: slyness | October 30, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

*sigh* Mudged myself, yet again. LiT, I answer your question about how I dressed back in the day. (Not the back back in the day day, just the 1960s and onward. Back in the back-backs days, I did the usual: toga, hairshirt, armor, rags, leotards, whatever we were wearing in the Dark Ages and the Renaissance.

Am sure glad to be out of those *&^%$ leotards, I gotta tell ya that much. Ditto codpieces.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

I didn't realize Hubble had found the FSM so easily...

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 30, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

And I'm not sure if this news validates 'Mudge's "plan for the future" or not...

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 30, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, I read your posts, both here and there. Oddly, it's sort of comforting to know that no matter how things change, you don't. (A catchy slogan...The more things change, the more Mudge stays the same?)

And while back in the day you must have looked quite studly in the armor, I'm guessing the leotard and tunic look didn't really do all that much for ya.

About the business model for newspapers...I was thinking (I know, a big uh-oh), and here's what I came up with. If The Post got together with some of the smaller papers (like Hagerstown's...I forget what it's called) and printed/delivered together as a single paper (no Post delivery in those areas), even if only once a week (Sunday?) they'd have a larger circulation area, larger potential subscription base, and therefore a more attractive advertising base. Problem is, I think both large and small papers would need to hit rock bottom before those suit-types recognized the incentive to hammer out such an agreement. But I was just letting my mind travel while folding laundry, so there's no telling the pitfalls of this plan.

Posted by: LostInThought | October 30, 2009 12:30 PM | Report abuse

if the republicans had written the health care bill they would be falling all over themselves to call it the greatest thing since the ten commandments.

regarding stories, mr. joel, i hope you will keep telling them. stretchers, even. even long ones, if you must.

in my work life we have become inundated with 'templates', which are essentially checklists to ensure that all the important information is included. trouble is, NO ONE reads them. everyone skips through the template desperately looking for some narrative they can make sense of. we need narrative to make sense of our experience and to have any chance to relate to each other.

Posted by: butlerguy | October 30, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

p.s. based on what i read in today's column, i think maybe aliens abducted krautwhammer and sucked his brains out.

Posted by: butlerguy | October 30, 2009 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, I wasn't quite the sartorial stud muffin in the leos and codpiece as I was later in my sailor-boy togs, my frontier bucksins, or my 1920s blazer and skimmer.

LiT, I spent about 3/4 of my newspaper career in smalltown newspapers as opposed to big city papers, and the economics are quite different. One thing to always keep in mind is that whenver people are talking the collapse of newspapers and journalism, yadda yadda, they are talking about the bigger papers, of whom there may be only a hundred or so, nationwide. Last I saw any good numbers, there were maybe 1,600 small-town papers, and that's a whole different ballgame--they seem to be reasonably healthy, although they, too, have been hurt by withdrawal of major advertisers. Smalltown papers survive pretty much on supermarket and car dealer ads, and although they, too carry a lot of classifieds, they aren't as dependent on loosing/keeping them as the big papers are.

I worked for papers where the classified ad section was a page and a half, and the content was so small and specifi even craigslist wouldn't hurt it.

Car dealership stuff doesn't work all that well on the Internet, because it is 99.98 percent a local neighborhood market. People almost always buy cars within a few miles of where they live; it's quite rare for people to travel very far to buy a car (especially a used car). So that ad market is pretty stable and reliable--but very local. Antique cars and the exotic stuff bc gets into is somewhat different, and more national--but that's a very tiny market segment.

To some extent the housing market tends to be the same, a very local market and not very susceptible to major Internet influence. Perhaps unfortunately, I know waaaaaay more about housing marketing advertising than I ever dreamed I wanted to, and basically it is pretty diverse, but still very local and not very subject to national Internet influence.

In a nutshell, the Internet is never going to have much affect on strictly local news, because no Internet service is ever going to cover the St. Francis-St. Aloyius JV lacrosse match, but there are 97 people in Lower Podunk who want to know, and the Internet will never do that for them nearly as efficiently as the local rag will.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

The aliens ONLY abduct drunks. It muddies the water and provides cover. They aren't stupid. The aliens, that is.

Posted by: Jumper1 | October 30, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Oh, hell, butlerguy, that happened a long time ago. Back around the time of the Roswell Incident would be my guess.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

LiT, all my changes have been internal. Although I guess not all that many of them, either.

Scotty, wouldn't it have been nice if that WaPo financials article broke out the dead-tyree versus the online numbers? (It wasn't my "plan" for the future; I wasn't advocating it, merely predicting it. At somwe point, companies cut their losses, that's all.)

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Interesting idea, LiT.

Would that be a Washington Post franchise model? Hmmm. Perhaps the Editorial offices in any given city or town operate like a franchised store, paying a fee and receiving product and access to resources, and selling the coprorate products with additional local content as you suggest. A step up from the news services like AP, but leveraging the branding of the WaPo name and the product/content and resources of the internationally recognized news and Editorial staffs.

Lotsa possibilites there, I think. Once the revenue streams, fees, and resources can all be balanced out, it could work.

Oh, Mudge -- ironic indeed. Do we need to air up the tires and pull the chocks away the old Panama Red Baron, and Light That Candle?

The GTP 'Space Cowboys' fly again?


Posted by: -bc- | October 30, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, I'd read that article, especially if they referred to the schools as Frank and Louie.

Our local paper here has seen a pretty big shift in advertisers over the past year in that dealership ads are virtually gone (as are the dealerships themselves), and now it's covered with Jimmy's Plumbing Service and Cleatis's Back Hoe Service. What used to be full page ads is now chopped up into probably 40 to a page. I would note, though, that a lot of the national stories (as usual) have either AP bylines or a national paper. Seems to me though that a Washington Post/St. Louis Dispatch team-up might work, or a NYT/Atlanta-Journal Constitution might fly. So maybe it's big and medium papers who need to team up, and not big and small.

About the clothes...I'm thinking you could pull off a powdered wig and tri-cornered hat no problem. But you probably went the Ben Franklin coonskin cap route, didn't you?

Posted by: LostInThought | October 30, 2009 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of stories, I was looking up the lengths of the novel, the novella, the novelette. So proscribed in the world of publishing profits that the terms seem mostly defined by fringe genre literature. That, and the completely unnecessary dearth of 38-minute films which can be commercially successful, are two things the internet ought to fix. Authors who write wonderful 90 page stories and filmakers who make brilliant 38 minute films ought to be rewarded.

Posted by: Jumper1 | October 30, 2009 1:08 PM | Report abuse

The trouble with that Post franchise model, bc, is that it is a basic variation of one of the "big box" companies coming into town and using its economic muscle to wipe out the little mom-and-pops. For good or ill (probably some of each).

But in general I am supportive of the little mom-and-pops versus the big guys: local hardware stores and lumber yards, local groceries, local bookstores, local restaurants instead Applebees and Olive Gardens. I realize there are pros and cons on both sides, but I just hate seeing the little guys get wiped out. The notion of the "free marketplace" wasn't supposed to hurt people, it's supposed to help them. But lately it doesn't. Always has been the one big flaw in Adam Smith's Invisble Hand.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 1:12 PM | Report abuse

"Wheat jeans, wheat jeans... nothing but wheat jeans." That's what the visiting students told Dr G when he was recent HS grad (Class of '64) asking what the kids were wearing on his soon-to-be-college campus.

That phrase always set his mom and him off into pure laughter whenever it was said. But I'll tell you one thing... he still wears wheat jeans.

Posted by: -TBG- | October 30, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Anybody thought of looking for a tipsy but suspiciously fat grizzly bear around Nome, Alaska?

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 30, 2009 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Hey Mudge....I'm just back from picking up my new glasses, and I gotta tell's clear I picked them out when I couldn't see very well. I look like I belong in the control room scenes on Apollo 13 wearing a starched white short-sleeve shirt while leaning over paper, pencil and slide rule. So while you may stay the same, apparently, I'm heading backwards.

I have a free couple of days coming up, and I'm so tickled I'm downright giddy. I think 5 pm is going to come around 3 today. Have the happiest of days all.

Posted by: LostInThought | October 30, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Nome, Nome on the range
Where the bear and the aliens play
Where never is heard
An incredulous word
And the movies are goofy all day

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 30, 2009 1:24 PM | Report abuse

No, no coonskin cap. Too many fleas. I did cut quite the figure in my 'scraper, though (tricorned naval officer's hat).

True, car ads have dried up--but that's a function of the economy, not the Internet, by and large. Methinks they'll be back in a year or two. Ditto housing.

Yes, I agree completely: the big papers can/should link. I could never understand why the St. L pD or the RMT, or LAT or whoever needed a "washington correspondent"; the Post does a perfectly good job, and the LAT (or whomever) ought to just pick up their reportage (as, lately, they do). Could never figure out why a space launch required a thousand journalists (other than ego and boondoggle). Any space launch or similar NASA activity could be covered perfectly well by a couple dozen skilled beat people. The common media notion of the importance of having "our guy/gal" travel a thousand miles to cover an event he/she knows nothing about has always mystified me. After all, that's why/how AP, UPI, Reuters, etc., were created.

But I always thought any time 400 reporters showed up, at least 300 of them ought to go home. (Wars excepted.)

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse
Some are good

Posted by: Jumper1 | October 30, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

First the red bandana get up and now you have me picturing you as an extra in the all-girl remake of Apollo 13. My heart can't take much more of this teasing.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 30, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Jumper, sometimes those 90 page novels are marketed as twofers-- one cover, one novella, flip it over, different cover, different novella.

I like those, I do wish they did that more often.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | October 30, 2009 1:34 PM | Report abuse

About the only two things that have stayed more or less the same with me from way back when are my weight (not enough) and my hair (way too much).

Well, check that last -- over the years there has been some follicular migration from my scalp to my back.

Being a silverback is no knucklewalk in the park.


Posted by: -bc- | October 30, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

HA! Mudge wrote "bucksins" early up there in a post. I suspect that if viewed in particular depth, that weren't a typo. . . .


(truth be known, I was hiding behind a tree in my own, um, "bucksins")

Posted by: -ftb- | October 30, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Wasn't the naval "scraper" a bicorned hat, worn "fore and aft" or "amidships"?

Posted by: kguy1 | October 30, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

If you tell me you have ever played soccer in a nun's habit, my head would explode. That goes double for you, mudge.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 30, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Re: Scrapers

Posted by: kguy1 | October 30, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Ace quit printing their double novels in the tête-bêche format in 1973 although Tor did do some in the late 80s as well. Many of those Aces are highly collectible nowadays.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 30, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Re: Health care plan - It wouldn't matter if the health care plan were perfect. The Repiglicans would oppose it simply because their only goal is to bring down the president. The good of the country is not in the equation. BTW, speaking of the GOP'ers did you see the editorial about Cuccinelli and his bigoted remarks about gays? And this guy could be VA's AG? Him and McDonnell will get along just fine. Women/gays/minorities/immigrants, not so much.

Posted by: ebtnut | October 30, 2009 1:54 PM | Report abuse

I have a graduate student from Nome who had a 5 minute tirade when asked about this movie. My favorite quibble he had was that there are no trees in Nome.

Posted by: mskidz | October 30, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

An all-girl version of Apollo 13? The mind boggles (well, not quite). Let's see:

Jamie Lovell: Kathleen Quinlan
Fredrika "Freddie" Haise: Diane Lane
Jean Krantz: Tina Fey
Barbie Mattingly: Reese Witherspoon
Pat Conrad: Mary McCormack
Jackie Swigert: Sanaa Lathan
CapComm !: Sandra Oh
EECOM Gold: Pauley Perrette
FIDO Gold: Emily Deschanel
RETRO Gold: Tamara Taylor
GUIDO WHite: Sarah Shahi
TELMU Gold: Christine Cox
Nell Armstrong: Beth Armstrong
Bev Aldrin: Sally Field
Science reporter #1: Paris Achenbach
Science Reporter #2: SciKid#1
Jewels Bergeman: Bette Midler
Wally Cronkite: Sela Ward
Dake Slayton: Mary Tyler Moore

and Evangeline Lilly as Kate.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

yello, I think it was I-mom in the red bandana.

I'd guess LiT would go with the dark-blue-almost-black bandana, though not as a TOBB.

Mudge in the brown bandana, with the love beads.

The all-female remake of Apollo 13 could only be your idea, dude. Leave it you to come up with a scenario with three women trapped in a confined space for days on end, having to huddle for warmth.


Posted by: -bc- | October 30, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

What? No Olivia Wilde?

Posted by: kguy1 | October 30, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

We have Ace Double #D-1, yello. Dr. G found it in a used bookstore a few years ago. We sent this guy scans of the covers for his online gallery...

Posted by: -TBG- | October 30, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

SCC: Sorta guessing at the gender of SciKid #1. Hope I got it right. If not, apologies and will try SciKid #2.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Milla Jovovich (and why wouldn't we?), that was a great Fifth Element costume somebody was wearing in last night's episode of The Office.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 30, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Olivia Wilde plays Chuck Yeager in "The Right Stuff."

But good catch, kguy.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

kguy, a scraper could be either a bicorn or a tricorn. Naval officers wore both at one time or another. I think they may even have worn them cotemporaneously, and I think you had your choice.

yello, here's a picture of me in my nun's habit during one of the time-outs at a soccer game taking an important call from Pope Urban VI.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

ftb, if you ever saw me in my bucksins your heart would stop.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Hubba, hubba. That picture is going straight to the password protected secret directory on my hard-drive.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 30, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

um, what makes you think it hasn't? (*charge* *clear* *yikes*)

Posted by: -ftb- | October 30, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Did the aliens abduct a word from the end of the first paragraph? Or is it just me.

Posted by: kbertocci | October 30, 2009 2:53 PM | Report abuse

After I posted this a.m., I checked the Friday entertainment section before heading out the door, moments later. Guess what? It IS the Doobie brothers who'll appear here. (Steely Dan? What WAS I thinking? Thoughts more wrapped up with Sir Harold Evans this morning I'm afraid.)

Thanks to all for the correction. The music scene was never a big interest of mine, I admit.

Was listening to NPR's Ira Flatow's Science Friday on the way home and one of his segments was about the 40th anniversary this week of the Arpanet/Internet, with UCLA computer science prof, Leonard Kleinrock, who was on scene two score years ago.

The first "word" sent from one computer to another? "lo"--as in "Lo and behold." It's because the "g" never went throught, the last letter of the word for "log"--only those three characters necessary for login that first time.

Interesting about the China and West Texas four-county wind project--they're going forward while T. Boone is now pulling out of his project in the Panhandle.

Posted by: laloomis | October 30, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

"planet" was last seen, drunk as a skunk, generally heading toward the grizzly infested and very rough backcountry of Nome. So yes it was most likeky abducted by aliens.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 30, 2009 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Well, fer crying out loud, nobody tell Lou Dobbs or we'll never hear the end of it.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

No no, PLEASE tell Lou and point out the exact patch of woods he should investigate...

And tell him the aliens love the smell of honey...

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 30, 2009 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of lots of feeback to Joel on his narative story...comments at the end of Joel's four-jump feature was one by Martin Fletcher about the Bible. Made me laugh, but it also made me wonder if it's NBC's Middle East bureau chief and correspondent Martin Fletcher?

One day, in response to one of the kits about Obama, there was a post by a Tony Harris. Similar to my curiosity about Martin Fletcher, made me wonder if it was CNN's morning anchorman Tony Harris who was posting at that time?

Posted by: laloomis | October 30, 2009 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Was 'planet' blond and under thirty? If so, we can get Nancy Grace on the case.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 30, 2009 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Polyester doubleknit. I actually MADE and wore two pairs of bellbottoms, one baby girl pink, the other baby boy blue. I have happily blanked out the tops I wore with them. I do remember, though, the white pleasant blouse I had at about the same time. IIRC, I made that one too.

It's no wonder I gave up on sewing at a young age!

Posted by: slyness | October 30, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Back to the Kit for a moment, I saw the ads for "The Fourth Kind" and thought it simply a Mockumentary of slasher/monster movies, spiced with a little Exorcist-style possession. Something for the classic teenage- date audience.

I have no idea what events took place, how real or unreal they were, or if it's just something cooked up to rationalize why one's backside hurts after a long cold night of drinking.

Speaking of which -- Joel, if you are in contact with your masters, can you ask them what's their fascination with the human @nus, anyway?

I suspect that they'll suggest that they thought it the most direct route to some people's brains. In fact, I'll be disappointed if there *is* any other answer.

I don't want to know about the cattle craziness - I doubt I'll ever understand that - but I am rather amused by the crop circles and lines in Central and South American deserts.


Posted by: -bc- | October 30, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Sneaking out early to go down to visit #2 dottir and fam, still recovering from her operation (and last week she got the flu). Granddottir #4 (age 7) has requested to cook with granddad again, as we've done before, so we'll be baking chocolate mugcakes (q.v.) together. And my wife and I will be cooking a couple of stockpiled meals for them, too.

Then staying with friends in Williamsburg Saturday night, so won't be back on the boodle until sometime Sunday afternoon.

Everybody have a scary Halloween.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 30, 2009 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Should have added, those masters of yours have some funny ideas about First Contact.

That Fourth Kind stuff seems very personal, and I'd imagine that they wouldn't respect me if I allowed that so early in the relationship.


Posted by: -bc- | October 30, 2009 3:52 PM | Report abuse

I recall a recent news story claiming that Icelanders, faced with a bankrupt country and crushing national debt, are ready to emigrate.

Could some of them come to the US and become professional tellers of the Sagas?

A recent New Scientist notes that aliens tend to abduct when their victims are on the cusp between wakefulness and sleep.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 30, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Now, that is interesting, DotC. People also experience "ghosts" in the same state. I myself have been visited more once by my grandmother in that rising-from-sleep half-state. Just, I knew when I woke up it was a brain-thing, not a spirit-thing. Still, it has always been a lovely when it happens.

Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Off kit, maybe off-kilter... but I'm putting together some visual aids for a service dog demonstration. I have lots of great ones of Wilbrodog and a trainer consented to let me use her pictures.

But I'm still in need of some good pictures of guide dogs at work that are not copyrighted OR where the owner can grant me permission.

Any hints on how to aid my search for those pictures? I've contacted a couple guide dog organizations already, of course.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | October 30, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Do a search on Flickr for guide dogs and check to see if the picture is licensed under Creative Commons for non-commercial use. Start with these:

Posted by: yellojkt | October 30, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, only "ghost" experience I had was when I was wide awake and reading in the daylight.

To this day I cannot come up with a brain-based explanation that makes sense; there was no apparent trigger. It was not even precisely a visual hallucination. I wish I knew what caused that.

Since then I do believe people in fact do experience or see ghosts. (Whether ghosts themselves exist is another story.)

Your ghost visitations sound lovely. Too bad I can't borrow your brain.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | October 30, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, yello! I couldn't think of the special term for those "non commerical use" licenses.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | October 30, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Don't ask me how this came up, but here are the laws on marrying your cousin.,_From_Strictest_to_Loosest

I don't know how this ties into alien abductions, but it must.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 30, 2009 4:27 PM | Report abuse

How do I attribute a picture using the creative commons license?

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | October 30, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Gosh, and I let AH get away!

Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Wilbrod, attribution rules, per the Creative Commons website:

Posted by: byoolin1 | October 30, 2009 4:50 PM | Report abuse

WB -- I use CCommons all the time. Begin with clarity on your ownership of the content. Did you make it, take it, draw it? Then select the type of CC you want. Note: no teach in the in, people may not do as you ask re attribution.

Shoe trivia of last boodle: Famolare or the "get there" shoe. See them here:

Also popular were the Sbicca suede or hemp or cork sandal platforms.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | October 30, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

No to a Cheers-like snug where I play the role of Cliffie or Norm.....but pretti-ly-er, I think.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | October 30, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

The HTML was too much, so I boiled it down to: © Permission granted under Creative Commons license for non-commerical use

Hope that should be fine for academia, CqP?

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | October 30, 2009 5:00 PM | Report abuse

And speaking of shoes, whilst walking about a funky part of a western American city earlier this week, I spotted the young woman just ahead of me wearing something I had never seen before: backwards heels (though not Marc Jacobs, some sort of knock-off, these are just for illustration):

Freaky and intriguing. The person I saw was not walking gracefully in them, but I am not sure whether that was inherent in the structure of the shoe, or just that individual.

Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Much much more prettily, CquaP.

Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Re the health care bill being introduced in July and it's now late October: "...but by Hill standards..."; that's all I need to hear.

Posted by: capsfan77 | October 30, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

I've seen those, Yoki, but not being worn and walked in. I can't imagine that it would be possible to be graceful in them.

Posted by: slyness | October 30, 2009 6:07 PM | Report abuse

I can see them being moved in the same as regular high heels-- but it would just look bad because the attention is drawn to the reverse heel.

Also, it would kill any ball-toe rhythm that is left over when wearing normal high heels, because the sensitive instep would be rubbing back against the heel base.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | October 30, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Had a wonderful time at lunch with dmd, her husband and his cousin. Cousin is from Cape Breton, NS so had fun talking with her about various places up there. They were all wonderful and funny - like Canadians are. dmd is just like I expected her to be, sharp, funny and sweet. Some of the Boodler’s ears must have been burning as we discussed you - but all in a good way! The time went by very quickly as it does when you’re in such good company.

Posted by: badsneakers | October 30, 2009 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Famolare! That's it! Bless you, CquaP. My brain can rest now. At least, that portion of it which was insistently wondering what those shoes were is now happy.

One thing I enjoy about having a tame wild animal in the house is looking over my shoulder and seeing a rabbit silhoutted against a window, or standing on her hind legs to get a better look at something, or watching me with disturbing attentiveness. IT is interesting to watch her go about her rabbit ways.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 30, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse

I think Joel's master Zartoog is very impressive. I'm sure it is a benevolent overlord bent only on guiding us humans towards good, one alien abduction at a time.

I hope these boneheaded hoax movies don't anger it. I'm afraid Zartoog's wrath might be formidable.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 30, 2009 7:19 PM | Report abuse

I think it must have been the admirable RD_Padouk who noted that the hyper-attentiveness of rabbits is, of course, an instinct in prey animals. A survival response.

EYE find it a bit disconcerting... much prefer my normal bad behaviour to fly under the radar, so to speak. It makes me nervous when anyone looks too closely at me, even a lagomorph. I feel I'm about to be caught out.

Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 7:20 PM | Report abuse

A long standing business relation with season's ticket to the Black Hawks game is telling me the singer will do a bit of the O Canada in French for tonight's game against the Canadiens. This canadophile Murrican knows the singer and made him practice his O Canada, Terre de nos aïeux, ton front est ceint de fleurons glorieux, ton bras sait porter l'épée, il sait porter la croix, bla, bla, bla. We'll see.

Yo, Badsneakers!

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 30, 2009 7:23 PM | Report abuse

I must say, my Famolares were prettier than that. For one thing, the heel was much higher - the whole thing was stacked up. Also, the sandal upper was not so thick.

I do recall that, even "prettier than that", they weren't the best-looking shoe. Kind of odd, in fact. But then, I wore Earth Shoes. No shoe could be too ugly for me then.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 30, 2009 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Cool, TBG: "Fast, slick and grisly." !

Posted by: Jumper1 | October 30, 2009 7:26 PM | Report abuse

I love the French words for O Canada. At least, they're better than the English.

Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 7:33 PM | Report abuse

This Happy Tree Friend Halloween special made me laugh.

Previous years' specials are available on the same site.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 30, 2009 7:35 PM | Report abuse

Good grief, my feet are hurting just looking at the Sbicca shoes. I wore a pair of those one day at Disneyworld back in the '70's. It was many years before the scars from the blisters went away. Most of the shoes back then were incredibly ugly and clunky - sort of like now! I liked halter tops. They were 'supportive' but kept me cool on hot summer days. I used to play tennis while wearing one.

Posted by: badsneakers | October 30, 2009 7:58 PM | Report abuse

Cool, shrieking denizen. Back when Edmonton had a minor league baseball team which played our local minor league team, I was the go-to singer for O Canada. I always wanted to sing it in French, but never could justify it to management.

I am cooking, and wonder: what did I do for extra fat & flavor before I started saving bacon grease? All the Ivansclan knows is that it tastes good. Tonight: london broil (big sale!) seared in iron skillet heated with bacon grease, soy & homemade red wine vinegar marinade for moisture; diced (cooked) potatoes & onions in Crisco oil & bacon grease; corn casserole with fresh corn kernels (last of season), butter, cream, salt & pepper; warmed-up Little Caesar breadsticks; fruit. Can you tell I'm using up stuff before grocery day?

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 30, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 8:06 PM | Report abuse

For the cook: Coppola Rosso and an amuse-bouche (hah!) of giant Kalamata olives and fresh vegetable dolma from the Mediterranean deli.

Y'all are welcome to come.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 30, 2009 8:08 PM | Report abuse

Singing some bits in French cuts on the Standing Guard on Thee. The long stretches of Standing Guard on Thee get tiring.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 30, 2009 8:16 PM | Report abuse

warming up the fax and cleaning out the intertubes so that ivansmom can fax some o' that in the westerly direction...

Posted by: LALurker | October 30, 2009 8:29 PM | Report abuse

I *know!*

We just stand on guard, stand on guard, stand on guard, stand on guard, stand on guard, For..... Thee!


Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 8:32 PM | Report abuse

Oh crap. RDS didn't show the anthems. They had the usual bloviators providing the usual clichés instead. @%!!*##@!

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 30, 2009 8:43 PM | Report abuse

Hello boodle! Read this kit and boodle thoroughly and chuckled a lot. I've missed you guys.

I'm surprised alien abduction hasn't already become a euphemism for disappearing while drunk here abouts. Usually the abductions are temporary, but once in a great while the perpetrators leave the abductees at the bottom of a lake or out in the woods.

Have been working feverishly toward moving to St. Paul. The job search isn't moving at warp speed, but taking care of loose ends is.

Earth shoes, what a blast from the past I-mom. I was never a fashion maven, but even I knew I should have refused to let my mother buy me the polyester bell bottoms in a lime green and orange horizontal stripe. Once allowed to make my own choices I did little better, the worst offense being a pair of white muffin tops (though the term muffin top was not yet coined) and the earth shoes were a close second.

Off to read a week's worth of kits, if not boodles.

Hugs and kitty lovins all around. It is snowing quite heavily here, expect to have an inch by morning. Lovely for Halloween.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | October 30, 2009 8:48 PM | Report abuse

Same here, frostbitten, although the snow has let up a little.

But the snow on fresh fallen leaves is very, very treacherous footing. I already slipped a few times tonight.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | October 30, 2009 9:09 PM | Report abuse

No snow here but it's raining cats, dogs, hallberds, nails and like a pissing cow.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 30, 2009 9:15 PM | Report abuse

OK, I think I've been in the professional services industry for too long. I just (again) looked at the hed (title) of this Kit, and instead of reading it properly, I saw "Booze Allen Hamilton."

Now they're prolly gonna sue me.

Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

That's REALLY funny, Yoki.

I mean, REALLY funny.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 30, 2009 9:25 PM | Report abuse

I did not have my reading glasses on and thought this post was about "Booze or Allen" Abduction, referring to that government contracting company w/ the funny name out in Virginie.

Posted by: axolotl | October 30, 2009 9:41 PM | Report abuse


Good luck with the move and the job search. Is the job market okay in St. Paul? I hope so...

Posted by: slyness | October 30, 2009 9:57 PM | Report abuse

Went down to the highway about an hour ago to get the mail and the rescue airedale started going crazy looking into the bush. A closer look reveled a big black bear. Looked again and it was dead. about 200 pounds. Mush have got hit by a car last night. Went back and got my kodak digital camera. Coaxed a couple of pics out of the almost dead batteries but when I tried to download them the batteries petered out. Only can get the priority batteries by mail. Damm

Posted by: bh72 | October 30, 2009 10:04 PM | Report abuse

Hi slyness- Things are shaky in St. Paul, as they are everywhere but North Dakota, but frostson isn't interested in a roomie so that's out. I'm trying to make a big career change from education to non-profit community development work. Hope growing our little nonprofit in the frozen north will get me a better than entry level position in the Twin Cities. On the bright side, we are up for a fairly significant grant that will pay me a part time salary as I make the transition out. Ironic to finally have money to pay the director,just at the time I want to move on. I should say things seem better in St. Paul than Tampa.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | October 30, 2009 10:10 PM | Report abuse

I'd be willing to bet Mudge was just as much the sartorial stud muffin in his cod piece and leos as he is in his blue bottoms. Especially to an Tudor Age wench.

Posted by: --dr-- | October 30, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse

Hee hee, Ivansmom! I can be clever about once every five years.

Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 10:52 PM | Report abuse

The WaPo Next Great Pundit contestants have been named.

Let the handicapping begin. Who will be the next Dionne, Will, or Krauthammer?

Posted by: yellojkt | October 30, 2009 11:38 PM | Report abuse

Internet: 1
All other Media: 0

I received an invitation to my cousin's son's wedding in December in Houston. I haven't seen them in 24 years.

Travelling to TX a few days prior to Christmas isn't something I'm likely to do. But guess how long it took me to find 2 gift registries? 5 minutes, maybe. I think I'll go with that Crate & Barrel place.

I could have called my cousin to ask, I found her address/phone number in less than a minute, but the other way was so much fun!

Posted by: -dbG- | October 30, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Yoki | October 30, 2009 11:50 PM | Report abuse

Well, I don't think you can blame people for wanting to read the new legislation. The fact is, they're inserting things into it that weren't discussed in committee. For example, in the Senate, they're doing this "state opt-out" thing. Huh? I don't remember that being in either Baucus' or Kennedy's committee bill. So please, cut people some slack.

Second: "Here's a guy whose Dad started pushing for health care reform in 1943 or something like that. He says this is the farthest that reform has ever gotten."

What about Medicare? Medicaid? If those don't count as reform, then I'm not sure what's being proposed now does either.

Posted by: crogers23 | October 31, 2009 12:11 AM | Report abuse
The old Cheney FBI interview finally released.

Posted by: Jumper1 | October 31, 2009 12:21 AM | Report abuse

bh72, back in another age when bears were hunted in Florida, airdales accompanied the hounds. Having found this out, I was respectful a few years later when my townhouse neighbors had a friendly and quite lovable airdale named Molly. She always barked for the password when she was out and I wandered into the back yard.

Frostbitten, best wishes in St. Paul. May there be no lutefisk tornadoes up there.

Just in time for the Season, Princeton University Press has published a book on the economics of playing Scrooge. The point seems to be that picking gifts for whoever will never work as well as sending cash.

I finally decided not to take advantage of a super-cheap JetBlue airfare to Aguadilla, Puerto Rico. What an excuse it would have been to revisit scenes from childhood. I've done very little revisiting; the closest was to check out the street where my grandmother had lived in Manhattan. I don't think driving past the Alamo really counted.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 31, 2009 12:28 AM | Report abuse

'morning all. It's raining now and it has been raining all night. It makes a good excuse not to pick up the wet mess the fallen leaves have made but I sure hope it's going to dry before the whole thing freezes over.
I'll be going to the farmer's market for the last time this year; it usually closes at this time when the weather doesn't collaborate.
I have been unfaithful to the market this week, a local chain had 10lbs of carrots, turnips, beets, yellow onions or potatoes for $1.49. It's hard to beat so I got the onions, potatoes and carrots. I find that 10lbs of beets or turnips is way too much.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 31, 2009 8:00 AM | Report abuse

Light that candle. The Olympic doobie has started its cross country trip.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 31, 2009 8:16 AM | Report abuse

Bonjour, les Boodleurs!

Today, I’m heading for the 19th century classic Mapocho Railway Station. Not too long ago, you could get on a train here and cross the Andes to board a ship in Buenos Aires. A three hour trip would take you to Valparaiso, where you could also board a ship. Or you could change trains and head north into the driest desert on earth, where you could also board a ship.

Today, you go to the airport or one of the many bus terminals or take your own car to get anywhere and only cruise ships visit Chilean ports.

Why go to the train station then?

It is now an exhibit hall and this week it hosts the Santiago International Book Fair. It is also only one block away from La Piojera (The Lice Den), Santiago’s oldest and raunchiest bar. Barmen here are busy pouring and spilling drinks. The most popular is Vino con Chicha (3/4 white wine & ¼ not fully fermented grape juice. A slice of orange decorates the concoction.

A more powerful mix is the Terremoto (big earthquake), the lethal mix is softened by a blob of ice cream.

After books and boozing, I’ll get a fish at the Central Market and go home.

Have a good weekend, everyone.


Posted by: Braguine | October 31, 2009 8:59 AM | Report abuse

That sounds splendid, Brag. Have a Vino con Chicha for me. I don't think I'm up to the Terremoto, even by proxy.

I was momentarily discombobulated, as I am more familiar with Valparaiso, Indiana.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 31, 2009 10:15 AM | Report abuse

I have been to Valparaiso, but I still think of the very fine novel when I hear the name.

Posted by: Yoki | October 31, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

I read some of that Cheney interview and well, found pretty much what I expected -- acknwledgement of what the interviewers already knew, but no further information.

Dick Cheney seemed to me to be doing a dance of the veils, and far more artfully than Alberto Gonzales.


Posted by: -bc- | October 31, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

I read some of that Cheney interview and well, found pretty much what I expected -- acknwledgement of what the interviewers already knew, but no further information.

Dick Cheney seemed to me to be doing a dance of the veils, and far more artfully than Alberto Gonzales.


Posted by: -bc- | October 31, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

I'm thinking a pub crawl with an Irish monk could be fun. Or with anyone, for that matter. Lone pub crawls end up with aliens performing unnatural acts on you and then you make a movie and millions of $$...

Cue the George Thorogood, "I Drink Alone"

Posted by: martooni | October 31, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Morning everybody. It's 70 degrees here. Reminds me of the Halloween I made the girls bunny costumes out of fleece thinking that they would be warm for trick or treating and could be used as pajamas afterwards. It was about 70 that night too, and humid. They have never forgotten those costumes!

Posted by: badsneakers | October 31, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

White wine and pineapple ice cream. The terremoto. Further comment is pointless until I try this. Which may be a long time.

As North Carolina has a major apple operation, and also inspired by the locavore concept as well as The Paupered Chef column
I have commenced fermentation of 3/4 gallon of hard cider. Sensitive readers should cover their ears and eyes (I'm using bread yeast and reconstituted canned juice.)

Posted by: Jumper1 | October 31, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

bc, cheney and "dance of the veils" should never be combined in the same sentence.

Now I need mind bleach to get the image of pink veils out, etc.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | October 31, 2009 11:36 AM | Report abuse

It's going to get into the 70s down here, too, Sneaks. I just file it under "Mother Nature and her mood swings" -- but it's damp here, too.

My farmers market were done with Honey Crisp apples for the season, which are my absolute favorites. I have maybe 5 left in the fridge and the Fuji apples I got today. Ah, well. Next season I think I will get a bushel or two. They keep very well and are soooo juicy and crisp. Mmmmmmmmm.

Toons! Good to hear from you! How you doin? What's the Bean gonna go trick-or-treating as tonight?

Posted by: -ftb- | October 31, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

New kit!

Posted by: DNA_Girl | October 31, 2009 12:45 PM | Report abuse

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