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Enterprising chemistry majors at Georgetown

I know i'm getting old because when I read about the freshmen busted for running a drug lab in a dorm at Georgetown University, I don't automatically and instinctively side with the students on account of their being enterprising young people with an interest in chemistry. Instead I side with their parents, who must be stricken at the thought that not only will the kids be kicked out of school and thrown in the slammer but the tuition for first semester is probably not refundable.

I'd be thinking: If I knew you were going to turn your dorm room into a drug lab, I would have sent you to a California school where students can minor in that sort of thing.

I'd be thinking: Your mother and I worked so hard to teach you right from wrong, and to raise you as an ethical person, and to send you off to an expensive boarding school jammed to the rafters with druggies as soon as that was legally permissible, and this is how you repay us!!!

Can I just say that when I was in college, we thought it was pretty racy and amazing to have a mini-fridge with a six-pack in it?

Sure, there was marijuana on campus, but I promise you that it did not actually get anyone high. It was a different era. People would have to smoke 15 joints to catch even the semblance of a buzz, possibly because, in many cases, the substance involved was actually oregano. (I always found the Italian oregan to be particularly harsh on the throat.)

But now, these kids today, they have to fool around with drugs like dimethyltryptamine, the very name of which is making my eyeballs hurt. These were Andover honor-roll kids, one at Georgetown, one at the very swank University of Richmond (great business school -- maybe our boy is the future CEO of a big pharmaceutical corporation?).

Maybe they were manufacturing this stuff to serve an academic interest in chemistry, neurobiology, metabolic pathways, etc. Because when you look it up, DMT is a very interesting molecule. From Wikipedia:

"Dimethyltryptamine is an indole-alkaloid derived from the shikimate pathway...In plants, the tryptophan is produced endogenously where in animals the tryptophan used comes from diet. No matter the source of tryptophan, the biosynthesis begins with the decarboxylation of L-tryptophan (step 1). Once decarboxylated, tryptamine (step 2) is dimethylated by S-adenosyl-methionine (SAM) via nucleophilic attack. This reaction is mediated by tryptamine-N-methyltransferase enzyme."

There will be a test.

I suspect that this is a case ripe for politicization for all the obvious reasons involving class and privilege and prep schools and elite colleges and drug laws that normally sweep up the poor and disadvantaged. In fact, I don't think that requires a lot of imagination, seeing that scenario unfold. But every situation like this deserves to be judged on its own merits. They're young. They're freshmen! Practically juveniles. Everyone gets a mulligan, don't they?

By Joel Achenbach  | October 26, 2010; 8:25 AM ET
 
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Comments

Better dorm living through chemistry.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

I'm oddly relieved that the Georgetown boys were merely manufacturing DMT. My first glance at the headlines made me think they were fixin' crank - methamphetamine - which is a different color of fish entirely. This is probably because in my job "drug lab" is virtually synonymous with "meth lab". As I've mentioned, meth is the devil. DMT, by contrast, appears to be merely an infernal handmaiden.

I'm with Joel. Legality, morality, common sense aside, one of my first reactions might be "Not on my dime, you don't."

I know people paying for college who say their kids won't share information about things like grades or hours completed, or whose kids insist on attending expensive schools to be with their friends when they could be on scholarship elsewhere. If anyone's kids have been running a drug lab they haven't mentioned it. I always wonder when "paying for college" became "blank check". I suppose this is yet another area in which I'll provide rich material for the Boy's future adult psychiatric sessions.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 26, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

It seems the Man was tipped off by someone smoking "fake" pot outside the dorm who, when asked, said he'd obtained the fauxijuana from the dorm room that was eventually raided.

I guess that means these kids were adhering to the just-in-time supply chain theory, hm?

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 26, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

College chem labs were a matter of intense pre-lab review, intense concentration while doing the stuff, then intense frustration at getting a C. I was overwhelmed once, when the prof in charge said I'd just missed an A.

What I didn't realize at the time was that the university had a pretty hot chem department, including a bright young assistant prof whose psychedelic-era poster collection from Berkeley was put on exhibit in the university gallery ca. 1970.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 26, 2010 9:29 AM | Report abuse

I prefer the headline "Nucleophilic Attack on Georgetown Campus".

Posted by: veritasinmedium | October 26, 2010 9:29 AM | Report abuse

I blame the parents for not properly supervising their kids dorm room during parents weekend. I did a very thorough inspection of my son's room and these were the mind operating substances I found in his room:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/yellojkt/5085306032/in/set-72157625172250848/

Note the very sophisticated concealment methods he was using. We also found some evidence of homemade apple brandy in a mason jar in his refrigerator. I couldn't take it away because o would have confiscated it if I had it in my carry-on baggage. I did attempt to consume as much of the evidence as possible while on location.

I did warn him that if there were more in November when we drove down for Thanksgiving up to two more bottles would be confiscated.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 9:33 AM | Report abuse

[Off-topic, the NY Times has a fine obituary for prolific New Yorker cartoonist and former airline pilot Leo Cullum. He will be missed].

Chicken soup for unhappy college students:
http://www.cup.columbia.edu/book/978-0-231-15174-0/what-to-do-when-college-is-not-the-best-time-of-your-life

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 26, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

I don't care if the kids were making asprin in their dorms. There was a clear line drawn, and they crossed it. Rules is rules, and all that. Go directly to jail, do not pass "Go", do not get tution refund.

I'll bet the boss would sing a different tune if this had occurred in the room next to his daughter's dorm room.

Good thing that I'm not a judge; every criminal would be hung at high noon.

Posted by: Don_from_I-270 | October 26, 2010 9:39 AM | Report abuse

SCC: mind-altering. I shouldn't be taking tequila shots so early in the morning.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 9:39 AM | Report abuse

http://www.ucop.edu/ucophome/coordrev/policy/12-10-90guide.html

Chancellors and Laboratory Directors are responsible for developing and implementing on-going substance abuse awareness programs for employees, supervisors, and students. Those programs shall include annual* distribution of information regarding the following:


1.
the University of California Policy on Substance Abuse which prohibits the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensing, possession, use or sale of controlled substances or legal substances, and the abuse of legal substances in the workplace, on University premises, at official University functions, or on University business; ...

Students

Students found to be in violation of the University of California Policy on Substance Abuse may be disciplined as set forth in Section 52.130 of the University of California Policies Applying to Campus Activities, Organization, and Students (Part A), and campus implementing regulations. Types of student disciplinary action include: warning, censure, loss of privileges and exclusion from activities, restitution, suspension, and dismissal. Section 52.124 provides that the loss of University employment shall not be a form of corrective action for students, unless the conduct giving rise to the discipline is related to the employment.

In addition to, or in lieu of disciplinary action, students may, as a condition of continued enrollment, be required to participate in a substance abuse assistance or rehabilitation program.

Posted by: laloomis | October 26, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Boys, you have stepped in it. With both feet. It is ugly, it is smelly, and it will stick to you for a very, very long time. Were I the judge I would give these guys a choice- Army, Navy, Marine Corps, jail- you pick.

Posted by: kguy1 | October 26, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Maybe they weren't making the kind of DMT that makes you see aliens, but were trying to make a synthetic version of the kind that regulates sleep patterns (you know, to survive the rigors of an elite college).

Posted by: LostInThought | October 26, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

kguy,
Because we need some guys with a working knowledge of drug chemistry to set up shop in Afghanistan?

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

And why couldn't they have just cadged Adderall prescriptions like normal college kids?

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 10:29 AM | Report abuse

What the fract was I doing in college?
Oh yeah, dancing on clouds.

Good morning, y'all! Since I'd only learned of this "story" early this morning and then read the kit ... well, I'll keep my mouth out of it for now except to say --- what the fract were they thinking?

And I'll skip the test, boss. I'd only bring down the score curve.

Posted by: talitha1 | October 26, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

My high school Chemistry AP textbook had a full chapter in the back on brain chemistry drugs. When I was bored in class but didn't want to fall asleep (which was often), I read up on tetrahydrocannabinol and lysergic acid diethylamide (the S is for saure, the German word for acid). Both are fascinating chemicals. Our teacher kept promising that we would make aspirin as a lab experiment, but we never did.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 10:42 AM | Report abuse

I think we need some more details. Was this the equivalent of kids raising a couple of "personal use" pot-plants with grow lights in an aluminum-foil lined closet? Or were they planning on getting into distribution? Also, just how nasty is this chemical? As Ivansmom points out, not everything is Crystal Meth.

And, of course, I think there must be some flexibility shown because of their youth. Freshman are not, strictly speaking, fully sentient. Indeed, I suspect the decision-making portions of the brain actually regress during the first two semesters of college.

All of which just means that this isn't a one size fits all "Judge Dredd" kind of situation. Of course, such things seldom are.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | October 26, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

The dottirs, God bless them, knew the limits and knew not to cross them. They realized that serious transgressions would result in my killing them and then their father killing them, resulting in double death. Sometimes fear is a very good thing.

That said, the young men at Georgetown will live with the consequences of their actions for a long, long time. I hope they understand the whys and hows of the situation and do right from this time forward.

Posted by: slyness | October 26, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

They were not Chem majors...was the work of Smith, a freshman in the School of Foreign Service, and his high school classmate Perrone, a liberal arts freshman at the University of Richmond.

Posted by: at0165 | October 26, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

One wonders how many science & engineering majors speculate about the possibilities of making a little something, just to see whether they can. And for fun of course. However, given that they were busted because another student was using their product, I can't help but suspect a teeny profit motive here as well. And remember, they don't have to sell it to be guilty of distribution - giving it away counts.

I'd bet these kids were absolutely not thinking of consequences here. Whether they were doing this for fun, for themselves and their friends, or for profit, it must have seemed relatively harmless. If they were a particular type of kid the possibility of explosion would not seem (a) real or (b) particularly alarming.

Generally speaking I think many freshmen in student housing forget that it is not "theirs", so to speak. I remember several illegal things involving far less expensive and complicated drugs (it was a simpler time)happening in my college's dorms, and I'm sure it wasn't unusual. Common sense and a moment's thought would say, don't start a drug lab in your room. Uh-huh.

Or, as Joel, says, at least go to a school where such science-based shenanigans might be viewed more lightly. MIT, maybe.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 26, 2010 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Smith & Perrone...can't decide if that sounds like a high-end restaurant, an accounting firm, or a publishing house. They'd need a third student for a good pharmaceutical company name, like Glaxo-SmithKline or Bristol-Myers Squibb.

Posted by: LostInThought | October 26, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

'Mudge, please join with me in a *faceplam* over this front page headline:

Iran injects fuel into first nuclear reactor

*SIGHHHHHHHHHHHHHH*

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 26, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

at0165 brings up a good point. It may seem more natural to the Boodle that sciencey types would be manufacturing drugs, but the overwhelming evidence is otherwise. Most meth labs - pure simple chemistry - are run by folks who may have finished high school but almost certainly never took a chemistry class. That is, anyone can do it. You just need access to the raw materials and some simple tools, and the desire.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 26, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Oh yeah...congrats to Mudge and bc for winning the tiara in such a tight race. Way to go. (Please....don't leave it lying around for any Joe Shmoe to try on...it is NOT a toy!)

Posted by: LostInThought | October 26, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Like yeah, it'd be a real bummer if the tuition isn't refundable.

Congratulations, Mudge!

Posted by: MsJS | October 26, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

This Kit is just too much of a jolt to the mind after hearing the impressive and accomplished sociobiologist Edward O. Wilson, formerly of Harvard, speak at our local Trinity University last night.

Full of humor and wise cracks, the soft-spoken 81-year-old. This professor emeritus spoke by satellite to a meeting of the United Nations on the topic of biodiversity just two days ago; Wilson plans international travel in the near future.

Wilson did show a slide of himself as a 13-year-old in Mobile, Ala., about the time he discovered the first colony of "far ain'ts" in the United States in a vacant lot in Mobile, near the docks. As Wilson explained it, "They came from far; ain't nothing much you can do to get rid of 'em."
I Googled a little this morning to learn that Wilson had been reading an article in National Grographic as a 9-year-old about ants, which stirred his interest.

Current research in rain forest canopies turned up 45 species of new ants on one gigantic limb, according to Wilson. If truth be told, Wilson cracked, Tarzan wouldn't last 15 minutes swinging from tree to tree, from vine to vine, there. But that's what graduate students are for?

These asides tempered the serious message of his talk: the very real threat of loss of biodiversity. He engaged in a lively Q&A and didn't have nearly enough time to tell more personal--and what promised to be interesting--stories.

http://www.achievement.org/autodoc/page/wil2bio-1

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/20/science/20antbook.html?ref=edward_o_wilson

Posted by: laloomis | October 26, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

from Fractalpedia:

"Dimethyltryptafractalase is a fractal-alkaloid derived from the shiitake pathway...In plants, the tryptophan is produced erogenously in turkey meat. No matter the source of tryptophan, the biosynthesis begins with the defractalation of L-tryptophan (step 1) following a pleasant nap. Once defractalated, tryptamine fractate (step 2) is dimethylated by S-adenosyl-fractionine (SAF) via nucleophilic fractal attack. This reaction is mediated by tryptafrac-N-methylfracferase hypotenuse enzyme."

Which is so commonly known by everyone I have no idea why I even bothered to spell it out, it was so obvious.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

You so fraaaaaaaaaactal, 'Mudge... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 26, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Scotty, methinks those wily Iranians used a hypodermic needle with a VERY large bore. Kind of 12-guage catheter, maybe. The one made out of corrugated pipe.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 11:38 AM | Report abuse

MsJS, how is the weather in your area, just saw a weather advisory for this evening here. It mentioned that the storm is currently in your area, stay safe.

Scotty, how big a syringe would Iran have required to inject the reactor?

Posted by: dmd3 | October 26, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Isn't tryptophan the stuff in Thanksgiving turkey which makes you sleepy? Let's hope they never criminalize possession of a drumstick with intent to distribute. They are going to have to start locking up cold cuts behind the counter with the Sudafed.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 11:44 AM | Report abuse

yello, "tetrahydrocannabinol and lysergic acid diethylamide"? You were sleeping in chem class while I was doing the research!

I doubt that these young folks are going to be lynched on the great oak tree of public opinion once this news cycle runs its course. Their legal and family troubles will be ongoing. Still, it seems to me that they are scapegoats here on the WaPo, and at Georgetown, for what is surely occuring on campuses (and in suburban McMansions and trailer parks) everywhere.

Posted by: talitha1 | October 26, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

scc: delete "?" I knew the chemical names, even then.

Posted by: talitha1 | October 26, 2010 11:56 AM | Report abuse

I don't know anything about this case, obviously. I must admit that I don't particularly tend to think of students caught in an apparently criminal action as scapegoats. To me, a scapegoat is one who is essentially like everyone else, but is chosen to take the blame and opprobrium for the bad acts of a society or group. That is, everyone else gets a free pass while the scapegoat gets the punishment. I'd only consider these guys scapegoats if it were convincingly shown that they wind up in trouble while authority turns a blind eye towards other students engaged in similar bad stuff. Otherwise, they're just guys doing what lots of other people do, who had the bad luck to be caught.

of course, that's just the pedant in me. Sorry.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 26, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Rosemary Clooney sings the
Woblin' Goblin

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eh3cF0h7KM4&feature=player_embedded

And, just waiting for the recording of Fractal the Knife......

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | October 26, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

I think they need to rethink some weather related terms, I mean really..."Weather bomb"

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/toronto/story/2010/10/26/toronto-weather.html?ref=rss

Posted by: dmd3 | October 26, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

I'm thinking the syringe would have to be at least as large as what they used on The Amazing Colossal Man...

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 26, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

WaPo has a nice headline in sports this morning,

"Will Kobe start of decline?"

I think the answer is "yes, sometime."

Posted by: nellie4 | October 26, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Past-kit I know, but I wanted to note that thanks to NPR's story this morning on Tamil pulp fiction, I know the definitive line between p0rn and erotica,
"exposing a navel is sexy. Spinning a top on it is vulgar."

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=130332973

Posted by: DNA_Girl | October 26, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

And in case you're having a fucitol day:

http://www.chm.bris.ac.uk/sillymolecules/sillymols.htm

Posted by: DNA_Girl | October 26, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to start using the phrase "they're as close as copulating serpents" as often as possible.

I also kinda love the running riff on the very long names. I had an Indian TA in college who offered ten bonus points on the exam for anyone who spelled his last name correctly. Needless to say, I didn't get it.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Ten Not Quite Completely True Weird Physics Facts:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/6546462/The-10-weirdest-physics-facts-from-relativity-to-quantum-physics.html

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Someone tell me what Anne Applebaum is mumbling about today?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/25/AR2010102504313.html?wprss=rss_opinions

Normally I wouldn't care but this seems to be another missive in the anti-Stewart crusade.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

If these guys were running a successful drug lab, they might not have needed their parents' money for tuition.

"Dad, you're the one who told me that I was going to have to work my way through college!"

Posted by: tomtildrum | October 26, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Good afternoon, all.

I did plenty of chemical experiments in my youth, and was even unconcerned about consequences enough to fiddle with brewing rocket fuels and fireworks *indoors.*

We were stupid, stupid, stupid and lucky we didn't blow ourselves to smithereens and the houses right off their foundations.

Other chemical experimentation, manufacture or processing, I disavow any knowledge.

Glad to share the tiara with Mudge this week (thanks for the congrats, folks) - I'll take the first half, and Mudge, you can wear it late (yeah, you can wear it to the Rally). I have no doubt it will end up with one of the ladies next week. LiT and TBG seem to have an affinity for it (plus it looks great on them).

Scottynuke, I'm glad I wasn't drinking anything when I read "The Fractal Must Convey." Thanks for that.

If the Iranians are injecting fuel into a nuclear reactor, I say let 'em go ahead and do so. [am wondering if the Russians actually sold them a diesel generator rather than a reactor, and that "nuclear fuel" is nothing more than diesel fuel (and probably high-sulfur diesel, at that)].

bc

Posted by: -bc- | October 26, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

First chem labs in dorms, and now this, what is the world coming to?

http://www.thestar.com/living/article/881162--real-life-prosecutors-to-press-charges-in-virtual-house-robbery?bn=1

Posted by: dmd3 | October 26, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

yello, I believe Ms. Applebaum is concerned there might be a slight liberal bias to the Rally.

Then again, that would match reality, no?

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 26, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Frankly, I don't understand what's wrong with a slight liberal bias.

Posted by: slyness | October 26, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

And where was Ms. Applebaum's concern about the conservative bias at the Beck rally?

And doesn't it all pale in comparison to this sad news: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/26/AR2010102601405.html

Posted by: Raysmom | October 26, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

I'm scheduled to teach Serotonin synthesis in my metabolic biochemistry class in a couple of weeks. That lecture now includes a DMT synthesis (side) trip with a slide entitled "Nucleophilic Attack on Georgetown Campus" (your permission, Veritas?)

And sorry to be nit-picky, 'mudge, but Dimethyltryptafractalase is the common name of the 'tryptafrac-N-methylfracferase hypotenuse' enzyme. The fractal-alkaloid is Dimethyltryptafractalamine

Posted by: DNA_Girl | October 26, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

*sigh* I seem to make that mistake all the time, DNA_Girl. Thanks for the correction.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

dmd, we have much wind here today but very little rain. Thank you for asking.

Batten down the hatches and bring in the lightweight lawn furniture. The wind's incredible.

Posted by: MsJS | October 26, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

The fractal abides...
The fractal also rises
The once and future fractal
The invisible fractal
The fractal who would be king

(Sorry for any repeats)

Posted by: rickoshea11 | October 26, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

DNA_Girl, I'm curious:

Did NPR mention anything about doing shots of liquor out of said navel?

[Feel free to discuss the antiseptic qualities of alcohol in reference to the above.]

bc

P.S. Thousands of college kids' Spring Break activities may hinge on that answer, DNA_Girl.

Posted by: -bc- | October 26, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Applebaum is a mare's patootie.

Ivansmom, I thought our definitions of "scapegoat" coincided rather well. But I've no legal training so I'm thinking harder and considering your perspective on things. Thanks!

Posted by: talitha1 | October 26, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

talitha - I think the problem with using the term scapegoat is that it implies that these fellows are being held responsible for something they didn't do. This, at least so far, is clearly not the case. Nobody is suggesting anything, like, that they are somehow personally and uniquely responsible for the drug problems on college campuses nationwide.

From the context of your earlier post, it seems as what you are really suggesting is that some selective enforcement is going on. Your concern seems to be that these young men might be punished for doing something that it routinely and flagrantly done elsewhere.

One can argue that this is unfair and, perhaps, culturally hypocritical, but this, to me at least, implies something much different than being a scapegoat.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | October 26, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

A "mulligan" is what I'd give a high school girl for carrying a Midol in a school with a "zero tolerance" drug policy. These guys? Not so much.

Posted by: Raysmom | October 26, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

RICKOSHEA!!!!! How ya been? Have been thinking about you and your recovery. How's it going? You doin' OK? Need me to fax you anything? Food, booze, snack food, movies, books?

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Less than 4 1/2 hours until the Rocky Horror Glee show.

Just sayin'.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

How cool would it be for a cameo appearance by Meatloaf!

Posted by: dmd3 | October 26, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Happy Halloglee!

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

SPOILER WARNING:

Don't count on Meatloaf tonight, but the episode will feature the vocal stylings of Uncle Jesse.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Wouldn't it be cool if both Mr. Loaf AND Barry Bostwick were going to be on Glee tonight??? (Hint, hint, hint.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

I knew John Perrone and Charlie Smith. I walked with them at Graduation last June. This story is shocking and disturbing because both Charlie and John were borderline genius. I sat with them every day at lunch. I'd pass them both in the hall. I never suspected this.
I remember in middle school, when John was my best friend, I'd walk up the street to his house and hang out with him almost every day.

After graduation, I remember seeing John and thinking to myself "This kid is going to do something great someday." I didn't expect this at all.

Posted by: connorhagan | October 26, 2010 5:20 PM | Report abuse

RD, my judgement, and choices of words lately, has been clouded by some keen personal despair. I thank you, and everyone, for your gentle kindness in steering my thoughts into clearer waters.

Posted by: talitha1 | October 26, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

scc: judgment, no "e". We all have our spelling bugaboos ... that's one of mine.

Posted by: talitha1 | October 26, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Judg(e)ment is one of my son's favorite examples of the complete idiocy of English spelling. At least we don't have a 'g' in jail.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

connorhagan,
Welcome. At 18, it's pretty easy to think you're smarter than the people who are setting rules and blabbering advice. Especially if you actually are smarter.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 26, 2010 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Judgement is a perfectly fine way to spell that word.

Posted by: Yoki | October 26, 2010 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Indeed, Yoki. Something about our common language ...

I may be entirely alone in this thought, but I would really love to get a Siberian Express cold front, along with a buncha snow, if only to kill all the pollen.

*misable*

Posted by: ftb3 | October 26, 2010 6:07 PM | Report abuse

"Judgment" without the stoopid "e" was a freakin' typo. I even TOLD Webster, but would he listen? "Noah," I sez, "look, boss, when Sam and Boswell and I were putting together Sam's first dictionary, we had the 'e' in it.
You can take my word for it."
"Mudge," he says, "it's silent. Nobody hears it. We can dispense with it, just this once."

"Well, you're the boss," I sez, reluctant-like and thinking maybe Funk or maybe Wagnall needs some help. "But next thing you know, you'll be takin' out that 'u' in colour and honour and valour and terminatour."

"Psst," says one of the other editours, "Mudge, check the memou in your In Boux."

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, you've had quite the sick day, haven't you?

Posted by: slyness | October 26, 2010 6:46 PM | Report abuse

*cough, cough*

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

connorhagan, welcome. I am sorry you are shocked and disturbed. Even very smart people sometimes do things we do not expect - sometimes, because they are very smart people. It is always very difficult for those who knew them well, and find themselves wondering if they knew them well enough.

Take heart. John Perrone may yet do something great one day. Very smart people, as well as those who are not so smart, sometimes make bad choices. We are, all of us, resoundingly human. This is a hard and early way for you to come to that realization, but it is a good thing to know.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 26, 2010 7:04 PM | Report abuse

Laughing my "e" off!

ftb, I wouldn't mind seeing some snow myself, though I 'spect some (millions?) rallygoers would rather wait until Monday. *ducking*

Posted by: talitha1 | October 26, 2010 7:05 PM | Report abuse

connorhagen, I just saw your post.
Welcome, and beg pardon for my frivolity.
I'm truly sorry for the hit you've taken and for your friends ..... otherwise

Ivansmom said it all.

Posted by: talitha1 | October 26, 2010 7:11 PM | Report abuse

I am and have always been a dork. With that out of the way, it does seem that a transformation has taken place in the last 10 or so years.... in that there are a LOT of people who have ready access to the directions to cook up some good drugs.

There are also a LOT of people who see no issue at all with making, using and selling illicit drugs... likely more people now than ever.

I don't have a problem with legalization or at least lowering penalties for drug usage, etc. Different strokes for different folks.

Whenever I think about what a widespread legalization/decriminalization would/could cause, I take pause and think maybe we should keep things the way they are.

NH has a vocal group wanting to legalize most drugs. I see how they talk, what they look like. My impression is not good. I think: who wants a bunch more people like THAT to move into the state? Not me.

Posted by: baldinho | October 26, 2010 7:12 PM | Report abuse

Yes, baldinho. The problem is that, particularly in this age of better living through chemistry, not all drugs are created equal. Legalize and tax marijuana? Maybe. That's nothing like methamphetamine (did I mention crank is the devil?) or even crack cocaine. You might function in society, for a few months or years, as a crack addict. You might even, depending on your body chemistry, be a casual user, as it is possible to do with marijuana. Methamphetamine just doesn't work that way - one try and you're toast.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 26, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

I remember, as a college junior, strolling down the main thoroughfare of a city that shall not be named, with some friends and out-of-town buddies, on a fine and exhilarating spring evening, on the way to consume beer and shishkebab, eighteen being then the drinking age, and thinking the following thought: for guys like us, unoccupied, fancy-free, out farting around in the reddening sunshine, this is the absolute pinnacle of freedom; we can do almost anything we want.

I wasn't the first young man to think this, nor the last. Fortunately the thought subsided back into a haze of grilled meat, with lager in moderation, and the consequences were far from fatal.

Sometimes this is not the outcome, particularly if the thoughts result in a plan. Nothing else generates illusions as well as a really fine plan does. A plan can make you believe not only that you have a virtual infinity of wonderful freedom, but also that you have all the angles covered.

Posted by: woofin | October 26, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

In case you haven't had enough of funny chemical names for the day, here's some exciting news about fulvalene diruthenium:

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101025161219.htm

Posted by: DNA_Girl | October 26, 2010 8:03 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for asking, Mudge. I'm doing well, due to family and friends who are taking such good care of me.

I have only one week to go under house arrest. When I go to the doctor on November 2, I'm hoping he's going to tell me that I can put some weight on my foot. Then life will return to normal, albeit with lots of physical therapy.

I'm so so sad that I won't be able to attend the rally against sanity and fear on the mall next Saturday.

Posted by: rickoshea11 | October 26, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

connor... you drove home the fact these could have easily been OUR kids doing this. We think they know better, but, like woofin points out... young men have the world by the tail (or so they think).

Posted by: -TBG- | October 26, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

We're in that weird season now: MLB, NFL, NBA and NHL are all happening.

Posted by: -TBG- | October 26, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Tornado warning! Can the flying monkeys be far behind?

Posted by: RD_Padouk | October 26, 2010 8:20 PM | Report abuse

Tornado warning! Can the flying monkeys be far behind?

Posted by: RD_Padouk | October 26, 2010 8:21 PM | Report abuse

rickoshea... so good to see you here. Nice to know you're still surviving. :-)

Posted by: -TBG- | October 26, 2010 8:27 PM | Report abuse

I didn't know they could talk about "nocturnal tornadoes" in the paper.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/capitalweathergang/2010/10/tornado_watch_until_3_am_for_m.html

Posted by: -TBG- | October 26, 2010 8:30 PM | Report abuse

I voted by absentee ballot today. The wife is due next Thursday. If it was up to her, the arrival would have happened about 2 weeks ago. She had a regularly scheduled appointment, and heard what we knew already... no real signs that the baby wants out yet. They scheduled another appointment for a week from today.

That is a sign they don't think anything is imminent.

The new drug advocates in NH seem to be overwhelmingly male, and overwhelmingly libertarian/antiestablishment/badacres. There was a whole movement created to move to NH to enfreedomate us. I think this is what showed up.

Their solution to life's problems is legalize drugs. Everything would just be great, they say. I dunno.

Posted by: baldinho | October 26, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

baldhino... I know we won't be the first folks you think of, but please make sure to keep us posted about the baby!

Posted by: -TBG- | October 26, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Okay, verdict on "Glee." I thought it was great.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 9:09 PM | Report abuse

Enjoyed it, but they need to focus on more than just Finn, his voice is quite weak.

Posted by: dmd3 | October 26, 2010 9:29 PM | Report abuse

On Kit for a moment, if one of those boys was mine, he would find himself living at home and going to a community college, assuming he wasn't doing jail time.

Spent the evening baking cookies. It's almost too hot to be using the oven.

Posted by: badsneakers | October 26, 2010 9:37 PM | Report abuse

Baldinho, tell your wife to remember sometimes things happen fast. I was one of those who started dilating early - walked around at two centimeters for weeks with the first, four centimeters for two weeks with the second. Didn't mean I was imminently going into labor. On the other hand, I just read a birth story the other day about a woman (first birth) who literally left the midwife's office one day at term after having been told she wasn't even effaced yet, and she went into hard labor in the subway going home and delivered 1-1/2 hours later.

Good luck. Tell her to break a leg.

Speaking of something similar, glad to see you back again, Rickoshea!

Posted by: Wheezy11 | October 26, 2010 10:12 PM | Report abuse

Fortunately, TBG, only NHL really matters. This narrows down the must see TV to a manageably few hours a week.

Posted by: Yoki | October 26, 2010 10:31 PM | Report abuse

*snort*

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 10:43 PM | Report abuse

They show hockey on TV? When did this start?

Posted by: yellojkt | October 26, 2010 10:47 PM | Report abuse

It might be some sort of public access channel thing, yello.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 26, 2010 11:11 PM | Report abuse

H O C K E Y (m o u s e)!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

*couldn't help it*

Too warm in the bedroom. Came in here to get the fan, and, well, stayed. . . .

Seems the Redskins are meeting up with the Lions this weekend and, according to the WaPo, the Lions are favored. I don't know whether to *laugh* or *snort*.

I may do both. . .

Posted by: ftb3 | October 26, 2010 11:20 PM | Report abuse

SCC (sorta): shoulda been hyphens between the letters of h-o-c-k-e-y and m-o-u-s-e

But you all knew that, right?

Posted by: ftb3 | October 26, 2010 11:23 PM | Report abuse

I did know that! Hello, dear ftb. We can miss the Rally together.

Posted by: Yoki | October 26, 2010 11:33 PM | Report abuse

Lemmings. The infamous Disney film (staged):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMZlr5Gf9yY

The current version:
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn19644-zoologger-lemmings-swap-suicide-for-infanticide.html

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 27, 2010 12:05 AM | Report abuse

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

Good morning, friends. Glad to hear your house arrest is almost over, rickoshea. I hope you get good news on your return to the doctor.

As for the kit...

It seems such a waste of young lives and parent's money to do such a thing. It would seem these young men need exposure to the "real" world, and not the padded soft existence they live in. Perhaps they might appreciate the opportunties their parents have provided for them with such an introduction.

Everyday I see wasted lives because of drug use, and it's so sad. It hurts, not only the individual that's using, but the families of said persons, and the community as a whole. Yet drug use, speaks to a much deeper problem, and I'm not justifying the use of drugs with this statement, but there are many layers to this problem. As for legalization, I don't know about that.

Why is the NYC Library getting Maya Angelou's papers? Is it a money thing? Was it a bid or a personal gift? I need to go back and read that. Never mind.

Slyness, bad weather near your neck of the woods. Hope none of it hit your area? One lady they interviewed last night said she thought it was a train near their house, the tornado that is. Everyone gives that description of the sound.

Have a great day, folks, and love to all.

Posted by: cmyth4u | October 27, 2010 6:35 AM | Report abuse

Maya Angelou
I've read the story, and this is where many of the great African-American writers left their papers. It's an honor, of course, details were not given concerning how all of this took place. It is so backwards and country to talk about money! Alas, I'm doomed because that's the part I want to know!

Posted by: cmyth4u | October 27, 2010 6:50 AM | Report abuse

So sari.

http://tinyurl.com/24xgfs4

Posted by: yellojkt | October 27, 2010 6:57 AM | Report abuse

Lions and tigers and..., well, just lions.

http://tinyurl.com/2ga3vu9

But very cute baby ones.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 27, 2010 6:59 AM | Report abuse

G'morning all, hi Cassandra! No bad weather here, just hot and humid. It's the end of October, fercryingoutloud! My glasses were falling off my nose during the walk, it was so warm at 6:30 in the morning...I'm ready for more seasonal temperatures.

I'll be thinking about my dad today. It's his birthday, he would be 115. Hard to take in that, come December, he will have been gone 30 years.

Busy day ahead. I seem to have many of these. Today's major task is to prepare refreshments for visitation after tomorrow's funeral for my best friend's father-in-law. We have three funerals at my church in the next two days. It's been a rough week.

Posted by: slyness | October 27, 2010 7:37 AM | Report abuse

Indeed, yello, quite the squee picture on the dead tree front page of one of the cubs learning to swim.

I'm so sad (NOT) that the Miami Heat won't go 82-0. :-)

*warming-up-for-a-wacky-Wednesday Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 27, 2010 7:39 AM | Report abuse

Mega-hugs fur slyness. Hang in there.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 27, 2010 7:42 AM | Report abuse

Hang in there, Slyness. The world always needs people like you. Caring folks, we can't have too many of them!

Posted by: cmyth4u | October 27, 2010 8:17 AM | Report abuse

*HUGSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS* for Slyness, of course.

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 27, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

This kit reminds me of the days when, not much older than the Georgetown students, some friends and I would end the day with a few beers and concoct grand schemes to liberate a a military helicopter and head to a tropical island. Even sober, and older, some of the plans seem quite promising-if one never wants to return to friends and family. Discussion always ended with the same two pronouncements- "Why don't we?" "Because it would be wrong."

Glee was great, but I'm such a Gleek you can't trust my judgment (or judgement as the case may be).

Hugs to Slyness, and all.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | October 27, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Slyness, good luck to you today, no matter how much time passes those anniversaries are hard aren't they.

Woke this morning to a notice from our internet service provider that one of our computers is probably infected and is sending out spam, virus checks have been begun and will continue after work.

Saw a beautiful sight this morning, it is gloriously sunny, and the fall leaves are beautiful. While stopped at a stoplight I notice a flock of Canada geese flying in a V-formation - nothing unusual there, although pretty in the golden light but trailing the V in the middle was one lone goose, which was whitish, couldn't tell if it was another type of goose or perhaps an albino? Seem to light to be an immature goose and too large as well. Reminded me of the Ugly Duckling story.

Follow up our weather bomb turn out to be more like a weather scud, really didn't amount to much a little wind and rain, storm used all its energy in the US midwest.

Posted by: dmd3 | October 27, 2010 8:50 AM | Report abuse

Hate to be pessimistic (moi?), but dmd & dbG, care to bet on how long it'll take spammers, et al to spoof the ISP's "your computer has been infected" messages? *SIGH*

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 27, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, y'all.

Warm muffins, coffee and OJ on the table.

Keep up the healing, ROS. Here's to putting weight on that foot next week.

Sending love and strength to slyness.

dmd, glad the weather bomb wasn't a big deal for you.

sneaks, applause to you for all the cookie baking.

May you all find richness in your day.

Posted by: MsJS | October 27, 2010 9:05 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle.

I'm kinda afraid to read the story behind this minor WaPo headline: "Study: Global extinction crisis looms."

I expect at some point in my life to become dead, but I didn't know extinction was on the horizon. I always assumed at least some of you would survive, as would the species.

In one of WaPo's possibly more justifiable question heds, we find: "What has Nat Geo taught you?" I'm not sure all of us should answer that.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 27, 2010 9:17 AM | Report abuse

My thoughts are with you Slyness.

One more batch of cookies to make and I'll be done. Hope to bake tonight but it is so warm here that the thought of turning on the oven gives me the vapors. I guess we shouldn't have put all the storm windows down so soon.

Posted by: badsneakers | October 27, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Well, the morning started badly - pouring rain, an unfortunate early a.m. phone call, dealing with the neighbor's mooching cat, five minutes on the road and I realized in the press I forgot to shave. Had to unload the car here from last night's training session, and found out part of the building's circulation system was on the fritz. Good thing I have an opening window. And the sun just broke through. Maybe extiinction is not quite on the horizon yet.

Posted by: ebtnut | October 27, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse

Meyerson's op-ed today is really, really good (not that he's ever really, really bad), so do take a gander: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/26/AR2010102605216_pf.html

So warm and so humid without A/C even if it is the end of October. Didn't get much quality sleep last night, I tell ya.

Posted by: ftb3 | October 27, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

OK, folks... time to get serious here. Have we solidified our plans for Saturday?

Here's what I propose (with the help of others' ideas)...

Meet up at 11 am at the Archives/Navy Memorial Metro station (green and yellow lines), which is just a short walk away from the rally area. Things will be crazy, but if you want to send an email to me at boodler [at] mac [dot] com I'll be happy to collect cell phone numbers so we can coordinate.

http://www.wmata.com/rail/station_detail.cfm?station_id=81

After the rally, I think we should gather at our regular spot, McCormick & Schmick's at 1652 K Street, NW. It means taking the Metro over there, but it shouldn't be too full of rally goers and they do have a Saturday "Game Day" menu that's almost as good as the Happy Hour one:

http://www.mccormickandschmicks.com/menus/0038-McCormick-Schmicks-Seafood-Washington-DC-K-St/Gameday.pdf

The only problem is what does "after the rally" mean? The rally organizers say it will go from noon to 3 pm, so maybe "after" is 3:30? M&S doesn't open on Saturdays until 2 pm, so we can't meet any earlier than that.

What do you say?

Posted by: -TBG- | October 27, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I'm fine with all of that, TBG, although NukeSpouse and I may have to forego the M&S fun. :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 27, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Will there be live boodling from the rally? I will be able to read but not comment from my lonely exile at a robotics event in Our Fair City.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | October 27, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Don't know if I'll be able to be at the BPH mid-afternoon, as I would have to drive down and I suspect that it would not be a seamlessly pleasant drive with all the wunnerful folk at the rally. I'll play it by ear, tho.

For all the boodlers who shall rally, I am indeed frenvious and wish you all well.

Posted by: ftb3 | October 27, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

"I expect at some point in my life to become dead, but I didn't know extinction was on the horizon. I always assumed at least some of you would survive, as would the species."

Sure, go ahead, make light and fun of it. What else is new? If Eilperin's reporting doesn't get you to thinking, maybe these will...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/oct/26/iucn-vertebrates-extinction-nagoya

http://www.rferl.org/content/UN_Conference_Confronts_Dramatic_Loss_Of_Biodiversity/2193667.html


Posted by: laloomis | October 27, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Hey, Rally Boodlers, Please Take Photos. This will be a historic event and it would be completely cool to see Boodlers taking part in it. I wish I could be there, but I'm not due to arrive until NEXT week (counting the hours).

Cheers.

CowTown

Posted by: jp1954 | October 27, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

baldinho,

Just a comment in response to your mention of Burlington's Church Street this past week. How could one miss Church Street?

It's Burlington's main shopping lane. Crow Books is resident at 14 Church Street; Borders at 29 Church Street. And there are the wonderful shops on the other three blocks that comprise Church Street's shopping district, several with exceptional items handcrafted in Vermont. One store is full of higher-priced goods, including a lot of art depicting Vermont scenes. And I shouldn't mention Danforth Pewter until I take one more peek at the family tree.

Restaurants, too. However, that Saturday in Burlington the treat was the farmer's market and street fair. The food offerings--and the fresh produce's visual riot of color! I believe I've never eaten or sampled a delicately hued breakfast radish before. Plenty of local folk color--lots of dogs on leashes, cute kids, entertainment, more arts and crafts. Artist Doug Nap and his brightly colored whimsical art made me laugh!

http://www.dugnap.com/

I do see that our tour guide on Sunday at the Ethan Allen house, a volunteer, is also a colorful Burlington resident. An article about Mr. Normandin in Burlington's local press, 2008. My interest in Jon, who claims Capetian descent, is that I believe we may have the same rare genetic diosorder, but I'll have to send him an email to get the specifics.:

http://www.7dvt.com/2008/quot-permaculture-quot-takes-root-burlington

Posted by: laloomis | October 27, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Another probing question on the front page:
"Right quarterback for Redskins: Donovan McNabb or Rex Grossman?"

As one who watched Grossman during his years with da Bears, I can only surmise this is a joke.

Posted by: MsJS | October 27, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Making light and fun of things is appropriate on a humor blog. On the other hand, posting on the internet someone's identifying info (name, home town, volunteer gig, etc.) without their express permission and then speculating on their health is seriously inappropriate, uncool, and way out of bounds.

Posted by: LostInThought | October 27, 2010 11:09 AM | Report abuse

And this story makes me see a shade of red so deep it is off the infrared scale. They may have to create a whole new color for this one:

"Paul supporter: Stomp victim should apologize to me."

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 27, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

We just rejoiced in our yearly fire drill. This is a pointless exercise in which all the unimportant employees in various Capitol agencies take the stairs and mill about outside the building until the cops wave us in. If there were really, say, a bomb, our rendevous points would be just right to ensure we were all gravely injured by flying granite chips.

The more important people usually know it is a drill. Since they have little interest in setting a good example, they just stay put. Various other employees hang out to check up on the ones who left. The IT people go around and leave snarky notes on computers which were not locked, etc. The older people who work on the top floors, and have difficulty with stairs, also usually don't participate.

We all know that if something really bad ever happened in the building, they wouldn't have time to send an evacuation alarm. Besides, every time there has been an actual bomb threat or fire alarm, they do not use the PA and evacuate the building. They tell individual agencies (or not) who kick out their workers (or not).

It was, however, a nice morning to stand around outside. The air is cool (finally!), the wind was crisp but not unpleasant, and light gray clouds scudded across the otherwise pretty blue sky.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 27, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

It's the time of the season for big cats and pumpkins. They seem to like them so much more than watermelons.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcT4paZfflg

I'mom, best practice would be automatic screen locking kicking in after a few minutes of non-use. Now go leave your IT people a snarky note. :)

dmd, good luck. Scotty, I don't think it will even take a day. Like other environments, you've always got the thugs.

Posted by: -dbG- | October 27, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom, that sounds EXACTLY like the fire drills we have here in [redacted] federal agency.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 27, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Yes, all our computers lock up after about five or ten minutes. Snark away, IM.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 27, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

"Making light and fun of things is appropriate on a humor blog. On the other hand, posting on the internet someone's identifying info (name, home town, volunteer gig, etc.) without their express permission and then speculating on their health is seriously inappropriate, uncool, and way out of bounds."

But is it only a humor blog? I don't think so. Check the archives, Joel's byline. Do your homework.

When a person agrees to be interviewed by the print press, one gives up one's privacy. Check out my name's mention in "How the Turkey Got Its Day" in the San Antonio Express-News. If anyone in the universe linked to it, I certainly wouldn't be getting my undies in a bunch.

Calling out a volunteer? If the volunteer, male or female, does a wonderful job as tour guide, docent? Jon Normandin was one of the very best--but then again, I had a great tour of Harvard, two great tours of the Freedom Trail--one given by actress Elissa Forsythe, in character as Rachel Revere, who gave me her business card before our tour started. The tour of Plymouth Harbor was good, and there were EXCEPTIONAL tour guides, such as Mr. Normandin, for the Boston Duck Tour (fellow who commutes to his five-days-a-week job from Maine) and Leo Miller, the tour guide of the Plymouth grist mill. The actors in character at the Plymouth Plantation and Mayflower II get mixed reviews.

Is there supposed to be some shame in having a rare genetic disorder? Especially when it's as rare as mine? Why finding one other individual in the entire universe who may have it, other than my sister and nephew, and it occurs on a royal bloodline...well, that might be a bit like, and exciting as, NYT reporter Nick Wade writing about Ghenghis Khan, were Khan not so sexually prolific.

Posted by: laloomis | October 27, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

As for the kit I don't know about these kids. The War on DrugĀ® industry is making a killing processing tens of thousands of African Americans and Latinos of modest means into the judicial system for, mostly, small amounts of pot. This taxpayers-funded industry must have to throw in the occasional college kid to stay somewhat credible.

A co-worker of mine made me realized I'm heading toward Wullerton next week *spitting on the ground*. Yeh, I'm going to a village near Rouleau/Dog Leg where the Corner Gas show was shot. I got to go to all these exotic places for my work, I'm so lucky.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 27, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

No, dbG. He's justified in leaving us snarky notes because we should remember to log out in an emergency; we fought hard to avoid the quick automatic screen lock.

Best practice in our office is to not have automatic screen locking after a few minutes of non-use. This is because, to us, "best practice" is defined by our ability to efficiently function as a court rather than certainty that others cannot see our screens. Our IT guy had only been here a matter of weeks before he fully understood this. No judge or attorney computer screens are anywhere near general public or anyone else, for that matter. The way we work, we'll have a window open with a document we're writing, another window or two with research, and books and case material open on our desks. We go back and forth from actual written material to computer screen. When we're reviewing the case material, several minutes may pass before we return to the document we're writing. When our computers automatically lock quickly, it is incredibly inefficient for us and genuinely impedes our ability to get work done. It also adds little or nothing to daily security functions. Every time we change system overseers we have to explain this all over again. Fortunately, folks have understood that under particular circumstances it is appropriate to modify across-the-board industry standards.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 27, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

'Mudge, it really seems that a lot of people need a refresher course on the First Amendment:

"A friend of mine went up to three policeman before Rand got there, and told them about the girl who was standing there with that wig on and that she was getting ready to do something," Profitt [the headstomper] said. "The policemen looked at him and said that's not our job."

And somehow he's upset with the idea that the police aren't supposed to interfere with political speech? *headdesk*

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 27, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Shriek-putting Rouleau/Dog Leg on the list right after Churchill as another exotic vacation locale I must get to. My "1,000 places to see before you die" is soooo different from the best selling book of the same name. (though I have seen lots of places named therein)

Posted by: frostbitten1 | October 27, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom... that reminds me of my last office when they installed the auto-shutoff motion-detecting lights. Working at a computer didn't create enough motion to keep the lights on, so every few minutes you could see someone in their office doing the Grover wave.

Posted by: -TBG- | October 27, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

What has the world come to when a citizen warns the police of a suspicious person clearly in the act of "getting ready to do something" and the cops do nothing?

Unfortunately, the gal from Moveon was going to assault Dr. Paul with "words" and possibly even "IDEAS". If she had had the good sense to strap on a Glock and carry an AR-15, the Paulites would not have perceived her as a threat.


Posted by: kguy1 | October 27, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

I once had an interview at Vanguard, we had to stand up and wave our arms every few minutes or the meeting room lights would go off.

Posted by: -dbG- | October 27, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

You know I've done my homework, so let's toss that one out under the category of you like to hear yourself talk.

Someone agreed to talk about a specific issue with a small local newspaper 2 1/2 years ago. I didn't see anything in the article about volunteer, docent, Ethan Allen, disorder. If additional information is gleaned during a casual conversation, it's wrong to disclose that information about a private citizen (a stranger!), let alone draw the lines from one bit of info to another. Very wrong. Cough up your car keys, your phone, your tv, and your iPod Wrong. If it was done on the internet forget about going to the beach this summer Wrong, and if there was speculation about extremely personal issues Santa's going to have a pretty light load this year Wrong.

Tossing in more people comes across as a lame attempt at insolence.

On the shame about disorders....sigh. Your closing is either a twist of your opening (just listening to yourself talk) or you've lost a step and have taken to throwing out the absurd just to have something to throw out.

You know all these things, you're just choosing to be obtuse. But good job slipping in the royal thing.

Have a happy day.

Posted by: LostInThought | October 27, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

OK, all... you want live boodle updates from the Rally to Restore Sanity?

Go here on Saturday and we'll be posting reports, pictures and video...

http://twitter.com/TheBoodleReport

If you already Twitter, follow us. If you don't you can just visit that page periodically to see what we've added. (Just ignore the big box at top telling you to sign up.)

Posted by: -TBG- | October 27, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

frosti, I'll try to remember to take a picture of Dog River's (not Dog Leg...) Hiding Bush and post it. Rouleau's website points to its location. There's a restaurant serving chili cheese dogs but I won't go there. Might buy a cap for a big fan of the show; my BIL from Leaf Rapids, MB. Here's another "exotic" location. He tells the story of frozen ravens falling from the trees during cold nights.

Being a gunmint owned&operated computer system my workstation also freezes if I'd been working non-stop for more than 5 minutes. ;)

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 27, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Thanks TBG!

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 27, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Thanks TBG!

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 27, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

So my single submission posted twice, without the sentence: "Once again I live vicariously through the Boodle."

Technology is magic.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 27, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Thunder and heavy rain just over in College Park. I am soaked from the bike ride home. So warm that my glasses were fogged to the point of danger.

LiT, how was your rain/wind quotient today? What bizzaro weather.

Baldi -- always happy to know that a wee one is on the way.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | October 27, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for letting us know TBG, since I am unable to attend I had planned on watching the livestream of the event on the Comedy Network up here, but now I will be working and not sure if I will be home in time, major frenvy going on.

Funny story for today, the school called and I had to pick up my younger daughter who had a sore tummy, I brought her to work with me for a few hours - on the way into the office she say to me, "Mom have you told everyone all the embarrassing stories about dad or do I have to do it". She just makes me laugh.

Posted by: dmd3 | October 27, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

I see news that the sunspots are beginning again. Quite vociferously. One can Google this for details.

Article on the "unwisdom of crowds":
http://www.bigquestionsonline.com/features/the-unwisdom-of-crowds

I say those smart-aleck college punks ought to get some caapi to go with their yage. Don't they know anything? Shows they should just make grappa instead.

Posted by: Jumper1 | October 27, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

AHA! My five-year beef with the boodle can now be ended. Do you remember the discussion we had about this back in the early days? While I got some support for it, many of you poo-poo'ed the idea...

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/achenblog/2006/04/return_of_the_achenbro.html#c303225

http://consumerist.com/2010/10/scott-rolls-out-tube-free-toilet-paper-to-reduce-waste.html

Posted by: -TBG- | October 27, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

re: boodler rally twitter feed-Thanks TBG! and I support you on tubeless toilet paper.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | October 27, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Anybody here use Scrivener? Am testing this and love it.
http://www.literatureandlatte.com/nanowrimo.html

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | October 27, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

But..but..TBG. Without the cardboard rolls, what will the bunny chew on?

Posted by: RD_Padouk | October 27, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

How many grade school art projects must be sacrificed so that we can save the environment? Say goodbye to macaroni art pencil holders :-)

Posted by: dmd3 | October 27, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

TBG, I am afraid that in our litigious society, your idea may prompt a lawsuit, which I suppose might be classified as a tubal litigation.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | October 27, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Schoolchildren can use the new Tang package for that, dmd...

http://lovelypackage.com/tang/

Posted by: -TBG- | October 27, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

A pumpkin purchasing guide:
http://press.princeton.edu/blog/2010/10/14/guesstimation-a-pumpkin-purchasing-guide/

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 27, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse

And honeybee democracy. If they can do it, maybe so can we.
http://press.princeton.edu/blog/2010/10/22/pgs-opinion-what-can-we-learn-about-democracy-from-honeybees/

Along those lines, there's a classic book (also from Princeton) titled "Mate Choice in Plants". Brainless critters like plants and slime molds can and do make decisions.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 27, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, DotC -- that last part is funny. Made me think of all those Rethuglicans out there, not to mention others whom I will not mention.

You know what I mean.....

I would like to think that plants have brains, but slime molds ... ewwwww

Posted by: ftb3 | October 27, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Slime molds can be employed as biocomputers to create most-efficient networks between locations. Someone recently did that by putting slime mold food in locations representing subway stations, then set a slime mold loose to design the network.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 27, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Those boys will be fine. I would imagine they'd fall into the better of two categories: today's INjustice system (one for the wealthy; the other for every unlucky one else.

Posted by: BaileyReynolds | October 27, 2010 5:53 PM | Report abuse

The idea of slime mold as biocomputers reminds me of the networks made by the Drummers in Neal Stephenon's Diamond Age. In an attenuated sort of way.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 27, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

But who wants to be asked to the big Sadie Hawkins Dance by a slime mold?

When you go out for coffee afterward, who pays, you or the slime mold?

Do you have to kiss her (it?) goodnight?

I mean, someone has to ask these questions.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 27, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm. I figured the slime mold would be male. It's all in your perspective, I guess. Mudge raises valid questions, though, whatever the slime mold gender.

I know, I know, it is both.

Posted by: Ivansmom | October 27, 2010 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Don't forget: Obama's on Jon Stewart tonight. If you can't stay up, tape/TIVO it.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 27, 2010 6:25 PM | Report abuse

Hello everyone.
Less then a week to the removal of all those stupid political ads.IT reminds me of "LOVE STINKS" by J Geils.He hates her and she hates him,he hates somebody else you just can't win.

Who does everyone like in the world serious?I gotta go with Texass,first world series and all.Although the biggest anal opening on the boodle resides in TX.So I may have to go with SF.

LOVE STINKS Yeah Yeah!!!

Posted by: greenwithenvy | October 27, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Third night in a row doing the public's work. Hopefully they won't get wrapped around the axle on what should be a couple of routine items, and get through my stuff in good order. Would like to get home in time for Criminal Minds. Also, it stinks that CBS moved CSI/NY to Friday night.

Posted by: ebtnut | October 27, 2010 6:59 PM | Report abuse

BTW, I ate at a local Italian place tonight. In the rest room was a big poster of the Rat Pack. It occurred to me that probably at least half the folks who come through there probably have no idea who those four guys (Sinatra, Martin, Lawford, and Davis) were.

Posted by: ebtnut | October 27, 2010 7:02 PM | Report abuse

Just finishing up 2 mental health days and I needed to do something to get me back into a working frame of mind, except, you know, I didn't actually want to work. So here's a brilliant xkcd and an equally brilliant suggestion from the NYT.

http://xkcd.com/792/

http://boss.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/10/25/how-a-pas5word-can-sink-your-company/

Posted by: -dbG- | October 27, 2010 7:11 PM | Report abuse

ebtnut -- don't forget Joey Bishop! He was one of them, too.

Mudge, I plan to look at The Daily Show online tomorrow. Although, it does make sense to watch it "live" -- if I am by that time.

Posted by: ftb3 | October 27, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

Hope 'Mudge has a TV in the basement -- tornado warning in southern MD! :-O

And in the ongoing "What WERE They Thinking?" saga, I present an unabashed bigot, Judson Phillips:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/27/AR2010102705118.html

*SIGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH*

Lincecum's off to a rough start -- runners on 2nd and 3rd, one out in the top of the 1st.

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 27, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

And Lincecum just failed to throw out the runner at third, who was caught in a rundown halfway to home, but gets out of the inning with a bases-loaded double play. *shaking my head*

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 27, 2010 8:12 PM | Report abuse

Scotty, that tornado warning was about 10 miles south of here. I went to my water aerobics at 7, and at about 7:15 somebody saw lightning out the window-- one lousy little bolt. But she went and told the staff, who closed the pool (even though it is indoors). They have a mandatory 30-minute waiting period, which would have been the end of the class. So we all got out and went home. So I am less than one-third water aerobicized tonight. Not only am I not pruney, I'm not even raisiny.

I guess I have to root for the Giants-- you all know my feelings about all things Texan. Anyway, SF is one nice town. Would love to live there, except for the whole earthquake thing.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 27, 2010 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Is Dubya still involved with the Rangers? That would be a deal breaker. I like the Rangers for one reason: Vlad the Impaler, an ex-Expo.
Yes, it was another one that was robbed by the NL Imperium.
SF over any Texan towns anytime.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | October 27, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Scotty,
That was the exact Tea Party Nation article I posted about a few days ago expressing my disgust. I was apalled that merely being Muslim was a sufficient reason for opposing the candidate. For people who claim to believe in the supremecy of the Constitution, they have a mighty hard time grasping the concept of "no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States."

Posted by: Mo_MoDo | October 27, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

The Texas Rangers used to be our beloved Washington Senators until Bob Frackin' Short moved them to Arlington, Texas, in 1971.

My mother's spirit would haunt me forever if I so much as thought about rooting for them.

Posted by: -TBG- | October 27, 2010 9:03 PM | Report abuse

My this is a most invigorating baseball contest.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | October 27, 2010 9:03 PM | Report abuse

laloomis, the missus and I and the boy stayed in Burlington about two years ago for a longtime friend's 40th birthday celebration.

It was off season (just between Xmas and New Years) and the college kids were all on break. As a result, we stayed at the fancy schmancy hotel on the waterfront (Hilton?) for dirt cheap. We walked to Church Street both days and just wandered. The boy liked the metal deer sculpture, and we bought a run-of-the-mill Vermont-themed memento for him: a tie-died t-shirt.

He loved that thing. In the morning as I was dressing him, I'd ask him if he wanted to wear his RADICAL shirt. Of course, he did.

What a hoot.

Posted by: baldinho | October 27, 2010 9:16 PM | Report abuse

Well, Mo_MoDo the defense that I am sure would be mounted by the TeaParty types is that they are not imposing a religious test for office: rather, they have superior scholarly knowledge, garnered from their vast reading of the internet, that the candidate/office-holder has sworn to commit murder and treason, and therefore is unfit for office. The various insanities, irrelevancies, and hypocrisies involved in this attitude are perceptible only to your treasonous liberal mind.

Posted by: ScienceTim | October 27, 2010 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, ace WaPo political reporter Dan Balz, ever alert to nuance as well as perturbations within the Force, has detected a mood of anger and frustration among the electorate. And, after mionths of stories predicting Tea Party tsunamis, tidal waves, total revolutions unlike anything seen since Robespierre, etc., the WaPo's Amy Gardner detects flaws amongst some tea Party candidates. Six days before the election and they are starting to hedge their bets.

I'm telling ya, the all-new Marcus Brauchli-led WaPo is really on top of this one.

Posted by: Curmudgeon5 | October 27, 2010 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Obama is doing well on Jon Stewart, including dressing Jon down a little bit.

Posted by: dmd3 | October 27, 2010 10:13 PM | Report abuse

dmd, it kills me that you get TDS an hour before we do! I could use the extra hour of sleep, especially this week. All my baking is done. Long lists are made and ready to be checked off starting tomorrow afternoon.

Posted by: badsneakers | October 27, 2010 10:29 PM | Report abuse

The Justice Department recently pointed out, in a case in Tennessee, that Islam is indeed a religion, not merely a political/terrorist movement.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | October 27, 2010 10:38 PM | Report abuse

DotC, pretty sorry state of affairs when that fact has to be pointed out!

On Kit - I heard today the the two boy 'chemists' are home with their parents and wearing monitors on their ankles. Apparently the judge told them to either get jobs or go to school, so maybe my comment about community college wasn't as snarky as I thought.

Posted by: badsneakers | October 27, 2010 11:02 PM | Report abuse

The President on the Daily Show ---I'm loving it! Further on down the road ...

Posted by: talitha1 | October 27, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

Rally Info from Lisa De Moraes:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/tvblog/2010/10/rally-to-restore-sanity-andor.html?wprss=tvblog

And less useful, but still a good general guide to DC:

http://www.brightestyoungthings.com/articles/111359.htm

Posted by: yellojkt | October 27, 2010 11:30 PM | Report abuse

Love the Waugh reference, yello, even if it is bogus and sick-making.

Posted by: Yoki | October 27, 2010 11:35 PM | Report abuse

I guess Fine Young Cannibals was already taken.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 27, 2010 11:40 PM | Report abuse

"Work with the process ... rather than try to transform the process." That's the pragmatism we need. Thank the stars above that we've got a man in office that has the guts and the sensibility to sit down and speak his mind ... and has a mind that doesn't trip over his tongue.

I loved the "heck of a job" he used talking about Larry Summers. "Pun intended". That is one smart man, as is Stewart. Quacking up!

The talk about filibusters (and the abuse of same on both sides of the aisle) and the need for true compromise ... there's that pragmatist coming out. Even his old "keep hope alive" and the new "restoring sanity" slogans don't hold a candle to that real message.

Go ahead and shoot me down now if you want ... but that just made me smile.

Posted by: talitha1 | October 27, 2010 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Vile Bodies, I guess.

Posted by: Yoki | October 27, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

mmm, kilt the boodle with Evelyn Waugh. It seems to be in a good literary cause, but still I'm sorry.

Posted by: Yoki | October 28, 2010 2:52 AM | Report abuse

How bout this for a left handed complement?

'San Francisco takes advantage of a less-than-sharp effort by the highly regarded left-hander on a night when Tim Lincecum is not exactly crisp.'

from the LA Times

Posted by: bh72 | October 28, 2010 3:58 AM | Report abuse

How bout this for a left handed complement?

'San Francisco takes advantage of a less-than-sharp effort by the highly regarded left-hander on a night when Tim Lincecum is not exactly crisp.'

from the the LA Times

Posted by: bh72 | October 28, 2010 4:01 AM | Report abuse

Mo_mo, that was an update where the idiot tried to defend his bigotry by saying he's not one that takes the Bible literally, but he's darn certain that every single Muslim adheres to the "kill the infidel" meme. *SIGHHHHHHHHHHHHH*

Well done, Giants! It was already a slugfest by the time I had to turn in, and I think we'll have a very entertaining Series!

Stop with the "Daily Show" spoilers already -- some of us have to wait for the rerun!!! *L*

*very-happy-to-see-an-excellent-Saturday-forecast-shaping-up Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | October 28, 2010 5:19 AM | Report abuse

I'm going to go see Sara Benincasa tonight in Adams Morgan. She is a stand-up comic who did a bunch of very funny Sarah Palin impersonation videos during the election.

She also writes columns for Wonkette where she pretends to stalk Barack Obama and she makes fun of Maureen Dowd.

Posted by: Mo_MoDo | October 28, 2010 7:38 AM | Report abuse

That sounds like fun, Yello.

Morning all, hi Cassandra! Sky is gray here today, Mr. T and I encountered some raindrops on the walk but they weren't enough to deter us.

Second funeral of the week today, I'm in charge of refreshments at the visitation following. But I'm going to go and vote in the meantime.

Later...

Posted by: slyness | October 28, 2010 7:46 AM | Report abuse

That's good Slyness... vote early... and often (right, MsJS?).

This is one of those weeks that I have to get up early just to get the house in shape for the house cleaners to be able to do their job.

Of course weekend guests make the task even more important--and makes me happier doing it, too!

Have a great day, folks! To steal a line from a dear friend... I hope something wonderful happens to you today!

Posted by: -TBG- | October 28, 2010 7:56 AM | Report abuse

And for your morning entertainment... I found a particularly good toaster picture this morning...

http://toasterreflections.tumblr.com

Posted by: -TBG- | October 28, 2010 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Good morninkzz, Boodlers!
From here, American elections seem canvoluted, that means a lot of voluting in a can, with interference of the volutacanners lobby, which actually runs the cannery.

Alles klaar?

Vroom, vroom. Off to check out a cloudy sky.

Brag :)

Posted by: Braguine | October 28, 2010 8:27 AM | Report abuse

I was looking through a Facebook friend's pictures from Balticon the other day and they had a picture from the Masquerade of a person dressed as Helo carrying a toaster. No reflection though.

They also had some cool pictures of the Steampunk Ball which seemed rather lightly attended.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 28, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Brag, you may have summed up this year's election perfectly ;-)

Off to work but getting quite excited about the weekend.

Posted by: badsneakers | October 28, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

The ScienceSpouse knows that Helo guy pretty well. He's a very dedicated costumer. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Posted by: ScienceTim | October 28, 2010 8:42 AM | Report abuse

I wonder if they know they have a Cylon on the police force in Hawaii.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 28, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

New kit.

Let's talk about the weather.

Posted by: yellojkt | October 28, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

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

Good morning, friends. DMD, your daughter is precious. That made me laugh too.

Slyness,we got water, but didn't last long, still it's all good. I have a funeral today too. I haven't voted yet, but will do it soon.

The after-school program I volunteer at has been closed until they can find another director. I was told this bit of news yesterday, and I'm so down in the dumps about it. And after they hire someone, I still might not get to work there. It will be left up to that person. Imagine being told news like that on a program that she(director) and I help create. The former director met with these folks and this is what they decided and she didn't even call me to let me know. I feel hurt in so many ways.

I tried to get them to keep it open and let me volunteer while the director took her treatments hoping in fact that she could come back. Evidently I'm missing a piece of information and she's not coming back. I told the housing exective that I want the program up and running, and I don't have to be a part of it for that to happen. The kids need it, and it's not about me.

As slow as I am, I need to get started on this new day. Have a beautiful day, folks, and love to all.

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