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Posted at 8:06 AM ET, 12/27/2010

Delegating resolutions

By Joel Achenbach

This is the time of year when we assemble our annual list of resolutions for how we are going to become leaner and smarter and younger and better listeners and whatnot, and in my case I want to keep it simple this time and not try to get too ambitious or delusional. So my only resolution is to be a completely different person. Brain transplant, basically. Only the fingerprints will be the same.

It occurs to me that the big mistake I've made over the years is the failure to delegate my resolutions. Outsource them. Like that old standby, "Drop 15 pounds." That should be staffed. That's arguably below my pay grade, even worrying about stuff like that. I want it to be on someone else's annual evaluation: HIS problem, ya dig? Yes, technically it's my body, but as I've gotten older, there are just too many individual body parts, organs, processes, systems, etc., for me to keep track of personally. I doubt Petraeus knows what every front-line division in Afghanistan is having for breakfast.

Another favorite, "Read more serious literature," screams for delegation. Someone just tell me what this Proust fellow is yammering about. What's the upshot of "Bleak House"? This "War and Peace" book, what's there more of, war or peace? And who wins? [Yes, yes, that Woody Allen joke is still funny after all these years: "It's about Russia."]

There will soon be technological delegation options. You resolve to learn a new language? They'll just have an implant for that. The Rosetta Stone in your head. You won't have to learn it, you'll just know it, hear it, speak it, as though it were a native tongue. (I also need an implant so that I can understand all the rules in hockey.)

People will tell you to be realistic with your resolutions. I think that's crazy. If the goal isn't completely unattainable, then it's not really much of a resolution, is it? It's just something you DO. A resolution by definition is something you won't do but would do if you weren't the person you actually are. Don't be taking the fun out of the resolutions by making these things simple and easy. Reach for the stars, I say. But make no mistake, they're trillions of miles away and separated by a hostile medium shot through with deadly radiation.

I'm glad I'm here to talk sense to everyone.

By Joel Achenbach  | December 27, 2010; 8:06 AM ET
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I lost 15 pounds once, but I found them later. They had just slipped around to the back out of sight.

Posted by: kguy1 | December 27, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

The other nice thing about working with the unattainable resolution is that coming up with it doesn't really force a person to take truly adequate stock of his shortcomings. Which is nice. The holiday blahs are bad enough without evenings of crushing introspection.

My problem is I keep losing the same 10 pounds every year.

Posted by: cowhand214 | December 27, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

I gave up making resolutions for Lent many years ago and have been much happier ever since.

Oh Mr. Aaaaaaaaaaay, 4 days and counting tick tock tick tock.

Good morning, y'all.

Warm bananana bread, coffee and pineapple juice on the table.

Posted by: MsJS | December 27, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

I made a vow not to mudge myself. So far it's working. I'm 1 for 1. However, the New Year hasn't even started yet, so I'm not sure this new kit counts.

On the other hand, I think for the first time I now understand the failure of my weight loss program: Very poor staff work. I'm going to have to speak to them about this. (But after the holidays, I think.)

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

The problem with resolutions is you have to make them easy to accomplish.

I vow to not watch either Olbermann or Beck's programs all year. I also will not drink any Meister Brau or eat any deep-fried twinkies.

I will not read any Op-eds by Katrina Vanden Heuvel or care if I just misspelled her name.

Done and done.

Posted by: baldinho | December 27, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Mine are just continuing resolutions like we fund the government with. They are just stop gap platitudes (eat more, exercise less (or is that vice versa?)) to keep things going until I come up with a real plan.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

This NYT piece argues convincingly that we have Jon Stewart to thank (almost alone) for passage of the 9/11 bill.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

I resolve to never again attempt to read a book by Richard North Patterson.

Posted by: Jumper1 | December 27, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

There's been talk of Congress being too busy and far too important to continue to produce all those resolutions congratulating and recognizing various people and organizations, as well as designating special days, weeks, and months.

To avoid disappointing many thousands of fine Americans, Congress needs to delegate these resolutions. I suggest that a contractor should be found to coordinate a staff of volunteers who are aligned with the majority party. Congress will then vote on the staff's recommendations en masse, once a month.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | December 27, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

How about a likeness of Jon Stewart on Mt. Rushmore (which should be renamed to Mt. Rushless)? That was a good article, Mudge.

Posted by: ftb3 | December 27, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Can't wait to outsource "take 2 minutes off my 5k record." It will free up a lot of time that would have been spent running, and solve that sore knee problem at the same time.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 27, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Interesting to note that the NYT has not enabled comments on that article about Jon Stewart. Also, I noted their choice to say that he "ordered" the show's staff not to talk about the subject. Just as a guess, I would suspect that he *advised* them not talk on the subject, and explained to them why he thought it would be a bad idea to do so.

Posted by: ScienceTim | December 27, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Mudge-thanks for that link. I have become one of those people whose only regular commercial TV news viewing is the Daily Show.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 27, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

It could be much worse, Frosti: you could be a Fox viewer:

Front page alert.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Dopey, doped-up, little rag doll.
Peaceful slumber overtakes all.
Barely aware of dusk or dawn.
Adrift amidst dreamless oblivion.

Posted by: laloomis | December 27, 2010 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Yep, in my experience people who watch Fox News are fairly unbalanced.

Posted by: kguy1 | December 27, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

IMHO, I also think they don't know that they are being played, kguy.

Posted by: ftb3 | December 27, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Agreed, ftb.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Howdy y'all. I am glad Joel is here to talk sense to us. He has also provided the best resolution I may yet have made: try not to get too ambitious or delusional. That's a year's work right there.

No snow here. There comes a point when a strong south wind is every bit as cold as a strong north wind.

Culinary report: I combined bits of Yoki's recipe with the one pj offered, and others I read. The pork butt roast was browned, then braised in a bottle of Leinenkugel's Creamy Dark beer, with ground sage and thyme and fresh rosemary, a leek and six cloves of garlic. It was very tasty. The Le Creuset pot is Awesome.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 27, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

ftb and kguy. I was really interested in a conversation between Frank Schaeffer and Mike Papantonio (Ring of Fire) -- Big Business Dupes Evangelicals Into Voting Republican -- Schaeffer's discussion of the Evangelicals' influence/role in this whole Republican sell-out mess is pretty stark and clear.

(about 9 minutes)

Check it out. I like Schaeffer's reference to the fact that these folks pretty much take a pass on the 10 commandments, but are still much more focused on the end of the world. They can easily demonize the President and are totally ready for dog whistle politics and the like.

Git out yur assault weapon, boy!

Posted by: russianthistle | December 27, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

I covet Le Creuset products. However, I have looked at the price and I have weighed some of those puppies -- neither my bank account nor my shelving could support the burden.

Posted by: ScienceTim | December 27, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

ScienceTim, that's why it was a Christmas gift. Just before the holiday there were some significant sales which brought it into "present" range, and allow me to cook with joy and without guilt. It lives on top of the oven cabinet - if that can't hold it, we're in trouble.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 27, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

People are struggling just to keep their heads above water and Mr. Achenbach is talking about Proust?? Under what rock, in what alternate, rose-colored, 50's sit-com universe, does he live?

Posted by: Itzajob | December 27, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

This one.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Would you like a madelaine?

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Oh Itza, give it time. There'll be another disaster somewhere to make you happy. But in response to your question,
I'm think it's I Dream of Jeanie. Could be Bewitched, but JA's more of a Major Nelson than a Darren Stevens, don't you think?

Posted by: LostInThought | December 27, 2010 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Is there something wrong with Proust? Aside of the time it takes to read, I mean, and the difficulty of finding a really good translation for those of us whose French is idiosyncratic at best.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 27, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

There are any number of ways I might characterize this blog post, but I'd hardly lump it into the category of "Proust discussions".

Posted by: bobsewell | December 27, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

As far as which rock, I'm going to have to go with Led Zeppelin. Final Answer.

Posted by: LostInThought | December 27, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

My favorite holiday gift so far is "The Big Short" by Michael Lewis.

I urge anyone who thinks that Fannie Mae was the reason we almost collapsed to read it.

Posted by: baldinho | December 27, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

SciTim, in Leviticus 28:17-22 we find:

“Yea; neither shall ye covet of thy neighbor’s Le Creusat, nor his Calphalon nor his All-Clad d5 griddle pan, for it may be found in the pages of Williams-Sonoma, and yea, there wickness dwells. Lust not in your heart after his Demeyere John Pawson stainless-steel Dutch oven, for it is sore expensive though it shines and gleams. Neither the Staub Round Cocotte, 9-quart shall ye hold in your heart, neither in red, sapphire blue, graphite nor basil color, for these are wicked hues thou shalt abstauin from, and do not allow them to encompass your loins, pork or otherwise. The copper-bottoms of the Mauviel ye shall shun, for that way surely madness lies. And surely thou must not entertain even the remotest carnal thoughts about the La Cornue CornuFé stove,* either in burgundy or the hunter green, lest ye be devoured by thine own passion, for it is written thus: *This item cannot be gift-wrapped.”

Thus endeth the lesson.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Pssst, LiT...

With where JA comes from and all, I'd be hard-pressed to not say Lynyrd Skynyrd.

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 27, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

I like "The Big Shorts" by Fruit of the Loom better.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Talking about Proust is free. Plus Itzajob has triggered the Mandatory Boodle Monty Python call-out:

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Of course it wasn't Fannie Mae. It was Barney Frank. Just ask my father. He will tell you. At great length. Several times.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

"Well ladies and gentlemen, I don't think any of our contestants this evening have succeeded in encapsulating the intricacies of Proust's masterwork, so I'm going to award the first prize this evening to the girl with the biggest t!ts."

-Both Peerless and Priceless

Posted by: kguy1 | December 27, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

I think I'd like a madelaine, now that I mention it.

Perhaps after lunch.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Best summary of Proust I found on the web:

"Mmmm...cookies" — Doug Hill

Not to be confused with:

"Mmmm...doughnuts" - Homer Simpson

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Oh, sure, you probably think it's EASY runing an entire federal agency all by yourself btween Christmas and New Years, and with a staff of six (two security guards, and IT intern, two statisticians and a train conductor subject expert). But there are subtleties, I tell you, subtleties. Nuances. FSM is in the details.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Upshot of "Bleak House": The justice system ain't just, and delay is the deadliest form of denial.

Proust: cookies, sex, and being a kid, technology and time, although not necessarily all at once.

""An hour is not merely an hour," Proust wrote, "it is a vase full of scents and sounds and projects and climates."

He'd have liked the science, weather, and discovery channels if he could watch cable today. Also, Playgirl.

A man for our times, indeed.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | December 27, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Oh, you guys are so funny. Dontchoo know there are wars, plagues and pestilence out "there"??? Dontchoo know there are bonuses to give out to guys who steal our money most effectively??? WassamattaU???

May one dip one's madeleine into melted dark chocolate and still be, well, cool and cultured? I think Mudge might have the right of first refusal on that one.

As for pans, I do like Scanpan, which is also über-heavy. I have a Scanpan skillet that I do like. I have priced the Dutch Ovens and those prices, too, are in the nose-bleed tier.

And, alas, it looks like I must miss the BPH later on today. *expletive in triplicate form (yet no carbon paper)* Do miss me, will ya? Or if you don't, a mere pretense that you will so do, will suffice.

Posted by: ftb3 | December 27, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

I don't buy cookware unless it has a Food Network chef's signature on the box. And for purposes of this rule only, Rachel Ray counts as a chef.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Is Nigella Lawson a Food Network chef? I think that she might be able to sell me anything. Even British dental-care products.

Posted by: ScienceTim | December 27, 2010 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Her, and Olivia Judson:

Posted by: ScienceTim | December 27, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

I think coveting Rachel Ray is covered someplace other than the cookware section of Leviticus.

ftb, have I ever denied you chocolate-dipping rights? I am just soooo not that guy.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse


Quit linking to smut. I got a 'Reason for Restriction: Forbidden Category "Sex Education"' error when I clicked on it. How am I going to explain that to the IT department?

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Zoology study?

Posted by: ScienceTim | December 27, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Tell them Dr. Tatiana's heat pump needs more freon.

Yeash, yeah, *I* know and you know. But the IT guys won't.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Freon (a trademark of the RamJac Corporation), what until you get a bang over the new 'green' refrigerators:

And for those of you who aren't up on their chemistry, when they say 'hydrocarbon refrigerant', they mean 'stuff that explodes if you aren't very careful and sometimes even if you are.'

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

SCC: ...wait until...

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, I wish you'd found that passage from Leviticus earlier. It is a timely and dire warning and one I clearly needed.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 27, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

The only thing from Rachael Ray I lust for is a non-stick frying pan to replace my Emeril Lagasse one which lasted me over four years.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 3:04 PM | Report abuse

The Emerilware one got donated to worthy Atlanta-based fraternity.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

Bestestestest kit ever, Mr.A!

My resolution is to say No when I need to say No
And Yes to everything else.

Posted by: talitha1 | December 27, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

More Proust, please.

And, would somebody announce the Metro Locale of the last BHP hour of 2010....



Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | December 27, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

oh, yeah ... and to remember to backboodle.

Posted by: talitha1 | December 27, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Regarding Food Network chef cookware, I got me some Paula Dean bakeware from Niece#1 yesterday. Niece#3 and I will bake scrumptious delights with them sometime after the new year.

Probably with less butter than Paula would use, though.

Posted by: MsJS | December 27, 2010 3:14 PM | Report abuse

"As far as which rock, I'm going to have to go with Led Zeppelin. Final Answer.

Posted by: LostInThought | December 27, 2010 12:55 PM"

While Led Zeppelin will be hard to beat, may I point out the qualifications of Steely Dan? They are my favorite if you have to get tune cooties (Bad sneakers and a pine colada my friend...).


Posted by: wiccan | December 27, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Don't go non-stick, yello. Get a really good (meaning "heavy") stainless steel pan, and a cheap bottle of Two-Buck Chuck or similar to de-glaze (clean) it. Works like a miracle. And a box of brillo pads, and yer good to go. After switching over several years ago, I'd never touch another non-stick pan again.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Here is some product copy from the Nigella Lawson website:

"I have always felt that anything in my kitchen has to be beautiful as well as useful, and this new range of almost-matt, softly gleaming black flameware is a seductive case in point. I love their shapes,…"

And that is as far as I got before I had to go take a cold shower.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

BPH tonight is at 5 pm at...

McCormick & Schmick's
1652 K St NW

which is between Farragut North on the Red Line and Farragut West on the Orange/Blue Line.

We'll be late. Son of G is stuck in traffic on 95 around Kings Dominion. Look for us closer to 6:30.

Posted by: -TBG- | December 27, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

CqP ... I know you will appreciate this. My momhead sent me the linsey-woolsey coverlet that my great-great grandmother wove back in mid-1800s. It's black and cream, with faint threads of pale gold, rose and olive, hand-dyed ... an overshot plaid pattern ... woven in three panels (the capacity width of her loom) and seamed together and hemmed by hand.

I'd been saving some of my presents from mother to open when I knew she and I could speak by phone together. This morning she called and I opened the package containing this incredible piece of my heritage. She said it had 'belonged' to me all these years and she'd been saving it .....

My knees are still shaking and my eyes and heart are full of wonder.

Posted by: talitha1 | December 27, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

BPH @ M&S on K St., 5-7 p.m. this very evening, CquaP! :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 27, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Is there a volume discount if you buy Two-Buck Chuck by the case?

Posted by: ScienceTim | December 27, 2010 3:33 PM | Report abuse

And if you can't make the BPH, there is a bowl game at 5 p.m. worth watching. Keep your eye out for the saxophone player with a mohawk.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

So instead of searching for lost time, we're searching for kitchen goddesses?

Speaking of new years' resolutions, I believe in starting 'em a week early to quit them all the sooner.

A light 1.5 mile trudge over snow and ice will make sure I'm not too out of shape when I get back to my daily routine-- if I don't break any limbs first.

Wilbrodog should have his worryingly high cabin fever burnt out for the day, too.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | December 27, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Who's leaving at 7:00?

Posted by: -TBG- | December 27, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Well, that's "happy hour" time, TBG. I don't know of anyone that has a curfew... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 27, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

What color is that mohawk, yello?

and, since y'all reminded me ...

Posted by: talitha1 | December 27, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Oh, talitha -- what a lovely gift. It sounds simply breathtaking, part of which has to be your own personal heritage.

*taking deep breaths myself*

Posted by: ftb3 | December 27, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Just plain black. It was his traditional 'T-cut' for the UGA game, but rather than shave it all down afterwards, he just trimmed the sides as a holiday present for his mother. At least it's not a tattoo or a piercing. It actually doesn't look bad.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Someone should write an essay on the dual dangers of either putting one's head in the sand, or the far alternative, causing a self-fulfilling doomster prophecy. I supposed Itzajob should do it.

Posted by: Jumper1 | December 27, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry I'm going to have to miss the BPH and the Birthday Boy after all.

I blame the boot. (Remember that I still am wearing the damned boot since I'm still post-surgery since August 30th.)

Yesterday when I attempted to leave the house, I (and the boot) slipped across the porch and landed on my hip.

Thank the FSM that I didn't break anything, but boy am I sore today.

I don't think I'll leave the house again until Spring!

Posted by: rickoshea11 | December 27, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Ouch, here's hoping the best for you until things thaw out, Maggie.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | December 27, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

yello, the local ice plant guy put in a modern ammonia system about 9 years ago. I was surprised but he said it was not so primitive. He has no trouble knowing when the system is leaking; that's for sure.

Posted by: Jumper1 | December 27, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

LaVar Arrington thinks there's a double standard, and I think I agree...

"...Instead of making decisions that would pull this team together, Shanahan continues to create double standards -- between coaches and players, between players and players -- that ultimately destroy the chemistry of a team.

"If a coach wishes to build a team, he must first understand that he is a part of it. A coach who thinks he is bigger than the team will find it very difficult to build a winner. So far, it would appear that Mike Shanahan thinks exactly that.

"In my opinion, McNabb has accomplished more than enough as a professional quarterback to be given a fair opportunity to evaluate, assess, adapt and adjust to a new team -- the same courtesy that Mike Shanahan's reputation has earned him."

Posted by: -TBG- | December 27, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

ftb, thanks! I wish I could wrap it around your shoulders ... all of our shoulders ... then we'd boodle and backporch all night long together!

Faxing hugs and drinks-of-choice to all
with a big grin included ... t.

Posted by: talitha1 | December 27, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Mojo to rickoshea ... take it easy, friend!

Posted by: talitha1 | December 27, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

*faxing a buncha slip-free karma to Maggie*

TBG -- I fully agree, too. I think that McNabb and many of the other players have been treated abominably.

Posted by: ftb3 | December 27, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse

I love the idea of outsourcing resolutions. It takes the notion of a personal assistant to a whole new level. And I also enthusiastically embrace the practice of making outrageously extravagant resolutions. That way when you break them you won't be quite so hard on yourself.

I mean, the only thing worse than making a simple resolution that normal people do as a matter of course, like say, resolving to only wear clothing that match, is breaking it before the end of the week.

This year I will be making the same resolution I always do: pay attention. My goal for 2011 is simply to live in the present a bit more. Not to do amazing things, but simply to really notice those ordinary events to which I am a witness. To create better memories - especially since memories are all we can ever truly call our own.

And maybe, if the fates are kind, I resolve to occasionally wear clothes that match.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | December 27, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Quick healing mojo and rest to ros!

OK yello, the GT band members are wearing hats. I tried to pick out the guy w/ the mohawk by yelling at my TV for everyone to take off his/her hat. Really. I'd have you ask MrJS how hard I tried, but for some reason he's put in earplugs and probably wouldn't hear you.

Posted by: MsJS | December 27, 2010 7:29 PM | Report abuse

It would be nice to have minions ready to lose the pounds I need to lose. But it ain't so again this year.

Funny that Mudge mentions Staub pots, I got the heaviest Christmas gift this year: the 26cm casserole by Staub, in blue. Left to my own devious devices I would have picked the 28cm but it leaves me room for further acquisitions in later years...

I drove 340km to meet the Storm (and also drop the Fungi at his apartment) and drive 60 km through It. The drive back the first 60km was also in the Storm, with the added benefit of icy roads and the occasional white out. I was within spitting distance of Vermont. I cana assure you that the skiing out there will be gorgeous tomorrow.
Most fellow drivers were idiots. Between the large bunches of twits driving one car length away at 100km/h on icy roads and the agressive glassbowls climbing over your bumper at 110km/h in zero visibility I wasn't impressed. I was happy to see a few pay for their sins.
Glassbowl of the year award: the guy who cut the top of a black pine planted by the NCC (most likely to make a Christmas tree) at the entrance of the Ottawa river rivershore linear park. This moron needs reeducation, NK style.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | December 27, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Maggie, my fax machine is on half power. You can either have mojo, or mojito, take your pick.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 7:32 PM | Report abuse

RD, do what I do ... wear black all the time and accessorize with color. ;~)

Posted by: talitha1 | December 27, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

When did they install kilometers in Canada?

*scrambling to find an online distance translator thingamagiggy*

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 27, 2010 7:39 PM | Report abuse

Mercy, shriek! Glad to hear to survived all that.

Posted by: talitha1 | December 27, 2010 7:43 PM | Report abuse

scc: 'you' survived

Posted by: talitha1 | December 27, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Oh, T -- a handwoven linsey-woolsey coverlet.....I am so deeply happy for you. Treasure.

And, if you take to the Smithsonian, they might enjoy documenting this piece of personal history and really, something of all our heritage.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | December 27, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

I would have been much better off going to the BPH.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 27, 2010 9:18 PM | Report abuse

We missed you, yello. The BPH was fun... it was practically empty in M&S... In fact, I think we were about 50% of the patrons.

In attendance and in happy holiday spirits...

Scotty and Mrs. Nuke (aka Nukespouse)
Raysmom and Raysdad
TBG (that's me)
Son of G
Friend of Son of G

Who'd I forget?

Posted by: -TBG- | December 27, 2010 9:47 PM | Report abuse

howdy Boodle! I am trying out my new surprise gift iPad. I think I have it somewhat figured out. This will be a fun animal to wrangle. The BPH sounds like great fun. I swear, one of these days. . . .

I enjoyed RD's resolution. No, not the matching clothes aspiration; what I haven't learned by now will probably elude me forever. I appreciate his reminder to pay attention and be present. Some years ago I began a conscious effort to do this, but remembering is sometimes hard work.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 27, 2010 10:24 PM | Report abuse

Glad SonofG made it safely home. And sounds like another successful BPH! Only where was mo? (Ruh-roh, hope someone told her about it.) Details, people, details. Not to mention pictures.

Posted by: seasea1 | December 27, 2010 11:56 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom, some years ago I discovered lecithin capsules seem to improve my memory. Unfortunately, if I skip even a day I have trouble remembering to take them.

Posted by: Jumper1 | December 28, 2010 6:16 AM | Report abuse

Good morninkkzz, Boodleros!

Congratulating the fearless BPHers. Well done.

Meanwhile in Valparaiso:
31 metric tons of explosives loaded on 18 barges will be deployed along a ten mile front of Valparaiso Bay to greet the new year. This makes New Year by the sea the largest fireworks display in the Western Hemisphere. Over one million visitors are expected to attend. Room with sea view and dinner is USD 2,000 per head at the Sheraton.

My check is in the mail :)

Posted by: Braguine | December 28, 2010 7:11 AM | Report abuse

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

Good morning,friends. Beautiful kit, JA. I second the delusional part. I'm not going there this year, not doing that. Just one more thing to fail, no thank you!

RD, matching clothes is boring, wearing whatever is clean, now that's the ticket. Just think of all the surprises one gets with that system. And it makes for endless conversation, albeit, sometimes not pleasant to the ear. But oh, the excitement, and there's not much work in it, all and all, a good thing!

Slyness, it is soooo cold here this morning! If you're walking this morning, you need a lot of layers. Be careful.

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

Posted by: cmyth4u | December 28, 2010 7:42 AM | Report abuse

Yes indeed, a fine BPH last night, and I'm sure the AchenWaiter realized his good fortune almost immediately... Pictures to follow this evening, I promise -- although there was an oddly-placed Xmas tree that kept blocking the view of certain Boodlers. :-)

*faxin' rickoshea a few square miles of traction-friendly tread to use as she will*

Just enough clouds on the eastern horizon this morning to produce a delightfully ruddy display. Let us hope the rest of the day follows suit.

*resolving-to-keep-up-just-as-long-as-humanly-(Muppetly?)-possible-with-the Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 28, 2010 7:53 AM | Report abuse

Good morning everyone, just checking in to say I am glad everyone had a fun time at the BPH and I am glad RoS is OK - be careful!

Have had a very nice few days with my family and my uncle yesterday, my uncle's visits are always great he gets us caught up on what all my cousins are doing, and now what my cousins children are doing - he is amazing for 84/85 drove over to our house in my aunts Mini Cooper - very cool.

Off today to see the Terra Cotta Warriers (sp) at the ROM and if we have time view the Ontario Art Gallery, with my sister, eldest and her friend, my brother and my neices. One neice is studying for a degree in classic archeology so we will have a budding expert to guide us through the treasures.

Laughed at this probably no surprise to boodlers.

Posted by: dmd3 | December 28, 2010 8:36 AM | Report abuse

I saw my first terra cotta warriors in Montreal while on my honeymoon back in 1987. I don't remember what museum they were at, but it was a big deal since it was one of the first times they had ever been out of China.

And then I got to see the whole site a few years back. They are always impressive.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 28, 2010 8:45 AM | Report abuse

'Morning everybody. Glad you're okay rickoshea but for heaven's sake, be more careful! Serious envy about the BPH last night. Glad you all had a good time and that SonofG got home okay. Belated happy birthday to him!

My driveway is a sheet of ice. Luckily, I don't have to walk on it as the car is in the garage. Last night "S" had to snow blow chunks of frozen snow in order to clear a space for his car.

I'm looking forward to a rare day off tomorrow with nothing planned except one gift exchange. Maybe I'll go visit the granddaughters!

Posted by: badsneakers | December 28, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle.

Why do I feel a bit skittish at the idea of having New Year's Eve midnight dinner at a waterfront restaurant in Valparaiso when 31 tons of gunpowder are detonated out in the harbor? The only thing that comes to mind is being in the first row or two of a Gallagher show. What's the over/under on the number of barges still floating at dawn? Brag, be sure to take a raincoat with you.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 9:06 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, y'all.

Warm banananana bread, coffee and OJ on the table.

Brag, that New Year's Eve celebration sounds fabulous! I be frenvious!

Our neighbor's German shepherd is having a blast in the snow this morning.

yello, ya shoulda been at the BPH.

Stay warm, Cassandra. And everyone else too for that matter.

Mr. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaay, three days and counting tick tick tick.

Posted by: MsJS | December 28, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of weather, today's Borowitz Report:

Pat Robertson: Snow Is God's Way of Punishing Americans Who Were Planning to Drive to Do Something Gay

Treacherous Roads Part of Almighty’s Strategy, Says Televangelist

VIRGINIA BEACH (The Borowitz Report) - Rev. Pat Robertson sparked controversy in today's broadcast of his 700 Club program when he claimed that God created the blizzard currently battering the Northeast "to punish Americans who were planning to drive to do something gay."

Explaining his theory, Rev. Robertson said, "Because of the bad road conditions the Almighty has made, any gay activities that people were planning on doing will have to be postponed by a day or two."

Additionally, he argued, God shut down major airports in the New York area "so that people who were hoping to fly to do something of a gay nature would have to take a train or a bus, so it might be days before the gay thing they were going to do could occur."

As for the millions of straight people in New York City who were also grounded by the bad weather, the televangelist said, "I think God probably wonders, if these people are really straight, then what are they doing in New York?"

In other blizzard-related news, the National Weather Service offered this update: "It's as white as a Glenn Beck rally out there."

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, I've sent that last line about the Glenn Beck rally to several people now. It's been making me grin all morning.

badsneakers, be careful out there! On my way home from the watering hole (two beers) I did a standing slide down my building's driveway. It was quite impressive if I do say so myself. Especially the way I alternated between high pitched squeaks of panic and laughing like a maniac.

Posted by: cowhand214 | December 28, 2010 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Good morning boodle! Sorry to see ROS was sidelined by injury for the BPH. ROS, and everyone, be careful.

Off to enjoy the unusually warm weather (high of 30 today) and avoid all the "Vikings playing on Tues. night" talk.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 28, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

cowhand -- I was just finishing up a conference call (I had finished my part, so I was multitasking), when I read your last paragraph. It made me burst out laughing (not at your expense, btw). You were lucky you didn't fall, but in my capacity as a, well, whatever I am ... I will give you bonus points for staying upright on your slide, and probably even more bonus points for "presentation."

Sorry I couldn't make it to the BPH last night. I'm sure a tremendous time was had by all.

As for the calendar quandries, I was absolutely right, in that if I PDFed the selected calendar pages (both picture and dates all on one page), I could then print them out, presumably with no problem.

*However* even working with an Apple guy on the phone yesterday, we couldn't get my photo printer (a Canon) to show up in the Printers & Faxes part of my System Preferences. We downloaded the drivers (twice) off the Canon website and even downloaded some recent software and *crickets* -- the Canon does *not* show up. Disconnected and reconnected the USB cable (from the back of the Mac, not a hub) and still nuttin'.

*fearing a cosmic conspiracy*

Posted by: ftb3 | December 28, 2010 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, at least the fish for dinner will be fresh.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

"Waiter, I'll have the Chilean Sea Bass con Shrapnel."

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Hi all, sorry to miss the BPH last night. Glad a good time was had by all. Sending healing thoughts to ROS.

talitha, that coverlet sounds lovely. My grandmother has recently given me some heirloom embroidered dresser scarves and I'm torn between using them (as she intended) and keeping them out of the sun, away from stains, etc...

Posted by: MoftheMountain | December 28, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Whatever you do, MotM, don't bring those scarves to the Bunker!!!

I still shudder when I think of the antimacassar's fate... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 28, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

*major-league jaw droppage*

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 28, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

ftb, I realize there are many who are devoted to Apple. In some cases this devotion stems from anti-Microsoft roots.

I won't go into the details, but a recent personal experience with Apple has led me to conclude Apple's hubris is fundamentally no different from Microsoft's. Apple could have had about $2,000 in holiday business from me and they blew it with arrogance and carppy customer service.

The attention I got from competitive vendors, however, was exceptional. So it all worked out, at least for me.

Posted by: MsJS | December 28, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

On a more supportive front, was the printer connected to the computer while you were downloading the software?

If it was, try it again with the printer disconnected.

In theory, once the software is downloaded and the software installation process is underway, you *should* be prompted as to when to connect the printer.

Posted by: MsJS | December 28, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

I just finished a letter to be taken to the newest member of my African family. I wrote a letter to his older brother and sent it over in a box with a bunch of clothes I bought for him about 3 years ago. Now, it's his brother's turn. It was a bit more difficult to write, as I didn't want to repeat exactly what I wrote in the first one. But I did want to impart the same thoughts. I emailed it to another auntie in the UK, where the youngest sibling (an attorney in private practice down in Zambia) is visiting during the holidays. They will print it out on nice bond paper (in accordance with my instructions) and she will take it back down with her when she goes back home.

I figure it's the very least I can do. I'm the one who's furthest away, and I love them all so much. This is a connection that will never break. What a joy!

And, now, on that sentimental note, it's time for lunch ... at least in my time zone.


Posted by: ftb3 | December 28, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Transcontinental dirigibles didn't make the cut, but flying cars came in at #1:

Top 10 Things Science Fiction Promised Us That Didn’t Happen in 2010

Posted by: yellojkt | December 28, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

ftb, glad you got a laugh! Especially on a conference call.

Posted by: cowhand214 | December 28, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Faxing Mudge a helmet for dinner :)

Posted by: Braguine | December 28, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

I believe we may have kilt it, Brag. Daid. El morto.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

SCC: el muerto

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Beautiful plum... (ahem) fireworks, though.


Posted by: Scottynuke | December 28, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

The orchids will be leaving the dining room for their normal homes tomorrow.

I like that New Jersey's Gov. Christie is in Orlando, contributing to Florida's economy.

The Orlando tourist business is looking a bit healthier, but possibly not healthy enough for a large increase in hotel capacity. One of the expansions was a huge one at the Peabody, across from the super-massive Orange County Convention Center.

The Convention Center was slated to have its own high speed rail station, but the incoming governor is almost certain to cancel the project. It seems he'll also try to privatize the state's remaining public hospitals and encourage parents to abandon socialized schools for the private variety.

Brag makes me wonder whether Florida should celebrate the Fourth of July by blowing up empty houses in new subdivisions. There's be plenty of parking on vacant lots, accessed by nice new paved streets. Some even have street lights.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | December 28, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Vientre para arriba

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Glad to hear Sugarloaf's Ski Patrol was well-prepared for the chair lift accident:

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 28, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

*Palm of Hand Slapped to Forehead Alert*

So I get on the phone with Canon and tell a very lovely young and patient woman my sob story. We try a few things, take out all the USB cables from the back of the Mac, try a few more things, and then she says: "Okay, unplug the power cord from the Canon while we're restarting the system, and then plug it in again ....


She did not shout that, but that's what it sounded like in my head. So, both printers are "automatically" connected, and Bob is most definitely your Uncle.


*at least the palm of the hand to the forehead shtick doesn't happen too often, but when it happens, I deserve bonus points, methinks*

So, it looks like I close this year with enough embarrassment to drag that feeling out at least a decade.

But *now* I can start printing calendars, starting tomorrow, I think.

Posted by: ftb3 | December 28, 2010 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Yay, ftb! Print away!
*cuing the noisemakers and confetti*

Posted by: MsJS | December 28, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Went to vet today.
Still alive, but still dying
for some Tim Horton's...


Fast food on real plates.
Quaint. Classy. Recyclable.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | December 28, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

An interesting and complex (and admiring) review of "True Grit2":

I think CqP would like it.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

I wanted to see that "True Grit" anyway, but the Fish review has made me certain. I liked Maddie's observations in the book that the first movie left out, and it sounds like the Coen brothers captured some of that spirit.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

I am back we got to the first museum at 10:00 this morning then left there are 2:30 to go to the Art Gallery. Saw the Terra Cotta exhibit which was fantastic, but unfortunately no photos allowed, then wandered through the Greek area of the museum, a great display by an artist from Ghana and the dinosaurs and probably a few things I am forgetting (yes textile display). At the Art Gallery we viewed the Maharajah Exhibit which was very impressive so incredible jewels and the silver carriage were most spectacular, as well as touring the Canadian and European Art collections.

I am so tired but will have a quick coffee and then go out for dinner with my sister.

Posted by: dmd3 | December 28, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse


I just got a new work laptop and I am having to break it in by adding all my plug-ins and settings.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 28, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

cowhand, I could picture your graceful slide complete with audio - very very funny (glad you stayed upright). And don't worry about me, since my hip replacement I have become a true wimp about falling so am super careful. A lot of the ice has melted but not all, my car, which was in shade today, still has ice trimmings.

Posted by: badsneakers | December 28, 2010 5:50 PM | Report abuse

I'm told by my gun-toting friends that the gun work in True Grit is accurate and historically right. Something that happens extremely rarely in Hollywood, the land where good guys shoot bad guys half a mile away with a .22 LR pump rifle while running away from half-naked vixen on motorbikes. The first TG was a John Wayne vehicle, not a movie. He had a couple of memorable lines and that's about it.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | December 28, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

John Wayne was in the first True Grit movie? I was so smitten with Glenn Campbell at the time I didn't notice.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 28, 2010 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Denis Dutton, the founder of Arts and Letters Daily, has died. This is sad news. Let's hope his successors can keep the site running!

Posted by: -pj- | December 28, 2010 7:05 PM | Report abuse

*Howls of frustration* I don't get any of the channels showing the Montreal/Washington game!

Posted by: Yoki | December 28, 2010 7:29 PM | Report abuse

RIP. This brought a real tear to my eye. *sniff, sniff*

Time, gentlemen

An elegy on the British pub, by our obituaries editor

Public houses

Dec 16th 2010 | from PRINT EDITION

THE Hand & Racquet sits in Whitcomb Street, just behind the National Gallery in London. A good position, you might think, with tourists passing. A good name, too, recalling a now-vanished tennis court from Charles II’s day. It was painted a fashionable dark navy some years ago, and acquired hanging baskets of petunias. Those have gone now, as have the windows, eclipsed by plates of steel. The painted sign is fading. The brass windowsills, which once promised “Superior Salads” and “Homely Fare” are turning a patinated green. Nothing fresh, animal, vegetable or mineral, has featured here in half a decade.

The fate of the Hand & Racquet can be multiplied across Britain. Since 2005 more than 6,000 pubs have closed. Drive through the cities, and the once-proud Victorian keystones on every corner are likely to be shuttered and dead. Roam the suburbs, and the neat brick housing estates are haunted by mock-Tudor ghosts. Search the countryside, and increasingly only the strange, too-large front windows in a cottage, or an ornate iron sign-holder projecting from a wall, will tell you that a pub once stood here. More than half the villages in Britain now have no pub at all.

The Hand & Racquet, like the others, died by a dozen cuts. The 2007 smoking ban drove regulars onto chilly backless benches in hastily improvised beer gardens, or into the street, or simply home (1,409 pubs closed in 2007; 1,973, post-ban, in 2008). Around 24,000 pubs, roughly 40% of the total, are tied to giant “pubcos”, hooked to one particular brewer, and must buy their beer from them at premium prices. Pubs, selling pints for £3.50 ($4.50) must compete with sixpacks of beer in the supermarket, or cheap plonk at £3.50 a bottle; they must also pay a swingeing government duty on beer, now ten times as high as Germany’s.

the rest here:

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

Washington just scored, Yoki. Late in the 1st it's 1-0 Caps.

I don't know if it works on a Canuckistani computer, but I just went to and clicked the "watch now" button under the game's score at the top of the page.

Posted by: MsJS | December 28, 2010 7:40 PM | Report abuse

Thanks MsJs! I tried the Watch Now on, but it didn't work for me.

Posted by: Yoki | December 28, 2010 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Make that 2-0 Caps.

Posted by: MsJS | December 28, 2010 7:44 PM | Report abuse

It is working now. Yay! I can see I'm going to need my crying towel.

Posted by: Yoki | December 28, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

Resolved: in 2011, the first year of the 112th Congress, to never let a day go by without posting something about what offends the very memory of decent journalism by the very inadequacy of the craft, in these days of infamy, visited upon US daily by the loudest dissembling ever in the history of the free press.

"Evercore's Altman on Capitalism"

[The chairman of Evercore Partners, Roger Altman, just told a conference that the financial crisis has put has put the "Anglo-Saxon model of free-market capitalism out of favor," and that "a new period of state intervention, re-regulation and creeping protectionism has begun," the Wall Street Journal reports. Mr. Altman ought to know that firsthand; Bloomberg reports that the Obama administration is in court challenging Evercore's fees leading up to the General Motors bankruptcy as "staggering," arguing, in essence, that the bankers don't deserve to be paid an additional $18 million to $54 million because the Treasury Department did a lot of the work that would have ordinarily been handled by bankers.]






"The New White House (they just couldn't ever call him Obama's) Economic Advisor Cheese Head"

The Fox is in the Wood Pile...

He came to the world in the usual way...

All the sweet, green icing flowing down...

And the cat's in the cradle...(with)...the silver spoon...

And...(they)'ll never have that recipe again
Oh, no!

You know...(they)'ll have a good time then


Imagine, if GWB had appointed this guy to the let's reform Wall Street, Main Street, and Morgage Imbalanced Lending?


Posted by: RichNomore | December 28, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

I spent the last couple of hours pondering the problems that this country will face come January with a bunch of idiots taking control of the house and just not having a grasp on basic economics. But, then, I come back to the boodle and read that stuff.

All that came to mind...

Posted by: russianthistle | December 28, 2010 8:26 PM | Report abuse

Good evening, all. I'm still backboodling but must check in to say hi. The family is visiting, we're having a great time. I'm glad to hear last night's BPH was a great success. Cassandra, we're staying warm!

Later, friends!

Posted by: slyness | December 28, 2010 8:27 PM | Report abuse

So, can one refresh an Internet screen on an iPad? It's a learning process.
I am on page 717 of Neal Stephenson's "Quicksilver". Can I finish in time to start Just Read More Novels month anew? Or, since I began it this fall, will it count in my tally if I finish in January? Yello?

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

May I mention that RichNoMore has five links, and we STILL DON't HAVE ITALICS?

sorry for yelling...

Posted by: rickoshea11 | December 28, 2010 9:15 PM | Report abuse

Watching KC honors. Caroline Kennedy - nice dress. Julia Roberts - nice heels.
This makes me appreciate Oprah even though I used to say her
show would rot the brain. Of course I had to approve of the book club whether or not I thought much of the books she chose. Anyone who makes people want to read deserves some kind of award.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 9:16 PM | Report abuse

Jennifer Hudson - good. Song from The Color Purple - deeply uninteresting. addition of choir - better. What, they couldn't get the Morehouse choir?

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Cannot watch because football is on but watch for my friend jazzist Chis Vadala who is playing.....

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | December 28, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

I keep turning this over in my mind, Ivansmom, and I've not resolved it. Is it true that any reading is better none. If not a Newberry winner in childhood, then Archie comics or a juvenile series churned out by a factory? Of course, I never had to make the choice; my girls read both comics and churned-out and fine childrens' literature, so I've put my head where it doesn't belong, once again.

But for adults who are literate, is reading Oprah's deeply personal, almost solipsistic choices, better than going out into the world not reading at all? Surely Literature teaches us nothing that life does not, except that it gives us insight into lives we'll never live. That's what I use it for, moving from my particular to the human general. It seems to me (and I'm going back a few years here) that she brings the general back down to her particular in her choices. I exempt R. Mistry and J. Franzen, but all her lists I've ever been (unwillingly) exposed to tell me that unless I can mirror her, I haven't really *lived.*

And you know, I watched two or three of her shows this last year, when I was home, and she is such an egotist. She talks over her guests; it is all about her insights.

Sorry, I just don't like or admire her.

Posted by: Yoki | December 28, 2010 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Clare Danes forgot part of her dress.

That's some amazing dance work.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 9:36 PM | Report abuse

She did? *switching channels really fast*

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 9:39 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 9:40 PM | Report abuse

Is that like Bridget Jones' missing skirt? vvg

Posted by: Yoki | December 28, 2010 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, I still think watching Oprah will rot the brain, and I agree her choice appear mostly to be about her. On balance, though, I still think an enormously popular public figure who encourages general reading is performing a public service. The overall selection of books available at both target and the wal-marts is both larger and better since she started her club.

I met Dolly Parton a few years ago. Her real passion is a Tennessee project she started, and primarily funds, which gives every child born there a new book. For some kids, without this book it wouldn't occur to parents to buy them one. I think the program gives them more throughout toddler years, or links with others that do.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 9:52 PM | Report abuse

Yoki -- I share your views on goodness, does not media power turn us into something huge and important and insightful. HUGE IRONY VOICE HERE.... Dianne Rehm comes to mind also.

As much as I adore literature, I am not sure it must be in the same place in all lives.... and your query is more nuanced that this....still, the essential humanity of making sense of life still takes place with words, stories, metaphors, images and archetypes....just that now, we have so many short venues for this, including the storylets of commercials even, and music videos clearly...movies, clearly.

I am sad, though, that our shared culture of the book is not what it was....I think that books permit the richest and most personalised stories to unfold within the mind's eye....

And, Oprah's pushing of the abomination of the The Secret and the Law of Attraction -- she oughta know better about the distribution of poverty, ill-health, trauma, war, disease, think that people can simply ENVISION the world of abundance, etc.


And, vvb in Oprah's column, btw.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | December 28, 2010 10:01 PM | Report abuse

I-mom- that's Parton's "Imagination Library" and it's available lots of places besides Tennessee. Children from birth to age 5 can have a free book mailed to them each month. Her foundation partners with local nonprofits that recruit families and keep track of addresses etc. It's a great program.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 28, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

I may have to embark on a new career as an economist. I'll set up the MaBHABian school of economic theory. It shouldn't be hard to get converts nowadays.

My theory will be that if you dig a big enough fiscal hole, you will eventually uncover a Magical Buried Hot-Air Balloon, which will allow you to effortlessly float back to the surface and prosperity.

I bet I get a bipartisan first class of students.

Posted by: baldinho | December 28, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

It was unexpectedly touching to see Carol Channing performing.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 10:08 PM | Report abuse

Had the same reaction I-mom. Wiki tells me she's 89. Wow.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 28, 2010 10:11 PM | Report abuse

I have been, tonight, gently and kindly educated about the good that Oprah Winfrey does in her basic charity, and also Dolly Parton (whom I always loved, after I heard her say in 1972, "Of course I look like an 'arlot. I always wanted to be pretty, and the **ores were the only people in town who did!"). Thank you, sisters.

Posted by: Yoki | December 28, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

Oh no, Silver Wings always precipitates a Youtube tear fest. Whew, Gill and Paisley with an antidote.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 28, 2010 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, still with you on the Oprafication thing...reminds me of how, over time, increasingly difficult and unreadable Iris Murdoch's books became. She would not endure editing. Editing is a writer's friend!

Let us never become to big for reasonable britches...and in my case, shall be spared the becoming big. Wouda happened by now.... (smiling).

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | December 28, 2010 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Yoki-I like Dolly's saying "it takes a lot of money to look this cheap."

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 28, 2010 10:25 PM | Report abuse

That was a great tribute to Merle Haggard. I was touchy about being from Oklahoma for so many years that I had a hard time listening to him. Finally I was able to relax and recognize his real artistry.

So far they've done a good job finding the right performers to honor each artist.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Why, CqP, I too would have been small, shrived, but was not spared! I must take me as I find me. I am thankful for the two men who have cradled me close, cherished me as though I were a wee soft fledgling in early spring in the snow (if a falcon-child who dives and rips).

Posted by: Yoki | December 28, 2010 10:45 PM | Report abuse

I think people who read Oprah's choices also read other books, but want to read books they can discuss with their friends.

Yoki, of course comic books are worthy literature. Nuture the habit of reading and diversify it, and chances are people just may try that new book once in a while.

I haven't watched Oprah very much or often (the last time may have been nearly 20 years ago), but haven't found anything to engender intense loathing equivalent to a thousand burning suns like some have.

As far as I am concerned, she's similar to but somewhat better than a lot of talk show hosts who only promote hatred as entertainment.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | December 28, 2010 10:46 PM | Report abuse

No Doubt's lead singer has pants cut like a poufy skirt.

I agree with all of us on the Oprah comments. Thanks to frosti for the Dolly clarification. I have always admired her, for her performing but mainly for her honesty. She's something else.

With the other honorees they could get iconic singers and dancers to perform for the honorees. It is harder for McCartney, who is the icon. The choices have worked out well and instrumentalists are great. Steven Tyler is inspired.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 10:50 PM | Report abuse

Okay. I'm verklempt.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 10:55 PM | Report abuse

Me, too. IM. Of course, I'm watching the Iggles game.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 28, 2010 10:58 PM | Report abuse

This was fun. Buenos gnocchis to all. Vaya con queso and fondue.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 28, 2010 11:01 PM | Report abuse

Yes that was fun.

Toodles boodle and sweet dreams.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 28, 2010 11:11 PM | Report abuse

I watch Oprah occasionally, and I agree that she is a terrible interviewer, and egotistical, and pushing The Secret was beyond the pale. But her book club picks, especially once she started going with dead authors, are not bad. I can't argue with Anna Karenina or East of Eden or Great Expectations. And getting a bunch of upper middle class white women to read Toni Morrison is fine by me.

I like Oprah when she's poking fun at herself, which she does quite a bit. I'll miss that.

Posted by: seasea1 | December 28, 2010 11:19 PM | Report abuse

Good evening, all.

Vikings over the Iggles tonight - I did not see that one coming.

Personally, I take my book recommentations from friends or from professional critics/reviwers who don't have a stake in the financial success of said publication.

When I see "As featured on the xx yy Show,"
or "On xx yy's Book Club," on the dust cover, this makes me think there's a business arrangement - and a less objective critique of the work.

But, that's just me.

And I'mom, I'm glad you stuck with Quicksilver - the next book's my fave in the series and quite a bit of fun.

G'night, all.

- Bill C

Posted by: -bc- | December 28, 2010 11:39 PM | Report abuse

But isn't it true, that anyone inclined to read Tolstoy's Karinin (even in English, either good translation) will have done it? Garnett, or Peaver and Volohonsky? Carmichael sucked.

Posted by: Yoki | December 28, 2010 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Actually I hadn't heard of Anna Karinina until a few years ago, and I haven't heard of those other authors you just mentioned. I've only recently read some Dostosovesky.

Oprah's audience tends to be more about my age (and slightly older) than baby boomer age, I believe, so that may factor in.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | December 29, 2010 12:38 AM | Report abuse

The New York Times and Time Magazine both say Oprah doesn't profit from her book club selections. The publishers certainly do, but I don't think there's an "arrangement". I really can't fault her for the book club. I'm sure she has encouraged people to read more, and that's a good thing.

Wish I could read on my commute - can't handle juggling glasses and bags and a book. Usually too tired to read when I get home these days too.

Posted by: seasea1 | December 29, 2010 12:57 AM | Report abuse

Thanks, Wilbrod, sweet yeanling. Yes, I'm very very old. Prolly I listen to like, Bing Crosby.

Posted by: Yoki | December 29, 2010 1:12 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: Yoki | December 29, 2010 1:19 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Yoki | December 29, 2010 1:31 AM | Report abuse

A little delayed (and without benefit of backBoodling), but here's the photographic proof we had a BPH:

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 29, 2010 5:32 AM | Report abuse

As always, great pictures Scotty.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 29, 2010 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Glad I didn't backBoodle, since almost everything I have to say regarding Ms. Winfrey is unprintable in a genteel setting. Along the lines of CquaP's "abomination" comments, but doubled, redoubled and then cubed.

And isn't this supposed to be the "slowest" week of the year? I can't recall an instance where so much stuff has landed on my desk around the holidays. *shrug*

*no-I'm-not-in-the-best-of-moods-but-gimme-a-few-minutes Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 29, 2010 8:14 AM | Report abuse

Morning all! The workers primed most of the basement walls yesterday and today we may see some color! It's been a long process, but these guys are very good and making sure everything is plumb and straight and smooth.

The man we hired is the kind of guy who doesn't want his name attached to sloppy work. Besides... it's the basement, so it doesn't really matter how long it takes, although Daughter is looking forward to having a teenage cave again.

Son of G is enjoying his time home, especially since a good friend is visiting from California. They are having fun being adults in their high school town and catching up with friends and other HS acquaintances they were afraid to talk to just a few years ago. It's a whole new ballgame when you're all in a bar, isn't it?

And now the big question... what are y'all doing for New Year's Eve? We've been roped into a gathering with old friends. It will be fun, especially since the Irish bar we're going to rings in the New Year on Dublin time. We'll be in bed asleep by 10:00. Yay!

Posted by: -TBG- | December 29, 2010 8:20 AM | Report abuse

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

Good morning, friends. I used to watch Oprah, but fell off after a couple of years. I agree with Ivansmom, getting people to read is a good thing. I admire Oprah Winfrey for doing that.

I went to the doctor with mother and baby. The baby got a good report, the mother, we're working on that.

Slyness, I believe warmer days are in sight. I'm so ready for them! We still have some of the white stuff.

Glad you folks enjoyed the BPH, and hope you're not too sore Ricosh.

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

Posted by: cmyth4u | December 29, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

'Morning everybody. I go with the majority on Oprah - I can't get past her ego but encouraging reading is good, even if some of the reading matter isn't that great.

Cassandra, glad the baby is doing well and sending good thoughts to your daughter.

TBG, your New Year's Eve sounds great, especially the part about celebrating early. We're staying home and I'm going to make lobster mac and cheese for "S". I haven't told him yet as I want to sort of surprise him (he'll see me making it, altho' he might not pay attention to the ingredients).

I've got to get moving and get out to exchange a gift and find a good warm snow shoveling hat and mittens.

Posted by: badsneakers | December 29, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Hello friends!

Listening to a song that one of my friends wrote and recorded that included the words/names/phrases Proust, Fortune Magazine, Shoveling snow, chaos, Sorry about the mess, and I'm down in Miami... in one song.

Posted by: russianthistle | December 29, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, y'all.

Warm banana bread, coffee and OJ on the table.

Oh Mr. Aaaaaaaaaaay, two more days tick tock.

Oprah is something of an institution here in TWC. What I admire about her is that she achieved the American Dream big-time doing *eggs-ackly* what she loves. What I don't like about her I can ignore.

Congrats to LiT and bc for sharing week 16 tiara bragging rites.

Cassandra, here's to vibrant health for all in your family.

I'm a great New Year's Eve party fan. Alas, my caregiver will put me to bed at 7pm Friday just as she always does. Can someone toot a horn or throw confetti for me at the appropriate moment? Merci bien!

Many thanks to the Vikes. Their win last night gives Da Bears a bye in the first week of the playoffs. Since I had 'em tagged for a 7-9 season, I most definitely didn't see that coming. But I'll take it.

Posted by: MsJS | December 29, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Hiya -- I, too, watched the KenCen program last night, and I, too, agree with many of the Boodlers' comments.

I do *adore* watching Bill T. Jones dance -- no matter how old he is. The dancers who danced in tribute to him were fabulous. *If only my body could **ever** do that*

And I absolutely loved seeing Carol Channing! She's 89 now? Wowie-Zowie! Angela Lansbury is up there, too, and she's always been a knockout. Anybody remember her as the maid in "Gaslight"? Or the older sister in "National Velvet"? She's tremendous. Chita Rivera (whom I don't think is "quite" that up there in years, but may be closing in on 80 soon) was a remarkable dancer -- wasn't she the first Maria on Broadway in West Side Story?

As for Winfrey, I suspect that she ought to be given some chops for making something of her life (gross understatement), considering from whence she came. I've looked at her program once or twice (at the gym, while on the treadmill), and got bored very, very quickly. I do like Dolly Parton, though. She's terrific, and very, very smart. And, I do believe, she and I are the same age. (why can't I look like that?)

I shall pass on commenting about Merle Haggard, as his genre of music is not one of which I'm particularly fond.

But I *knew* they would save Paul McCartney for last. When I was a screaming teenager (well, I didn't scream out loud -- just within), I was more enamored of George Harrison, as I liked his looks. But I really did like McCartney a whole lot, too. I was intrigued by how he played left-handed. Strange, but true, how my mind worked in those far gone days (and probably still does, I'm sure).

Mudge -- for you in particular, go to and scroll down towards the bottom, where you will find articles and, most importantly, pictures of Noomi Rapace. Click on "bilder" (which means "pictures" in Swedish). You will see her face above the headline of the story. 'Tis my gift to you, Your Royal Mudgeness.

Posted by: ftb3 | December 29, 2010 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the pictures, Scotty.

Trying to picture you in a bad mood. Failing.


Posted by: kbertocci | December 29, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

ftb, Chita Rivera was the first Anita, not Maria (that was Carol Lawrence). Chita was born and raised in DC; her mom was a gummint worker and her dad played clarinet and sax for the Navy band. When he died (Chita was 7), her mom went to work in the Pentagon. When she was 15 she studied ballet with the legendary George Ballanchine.

She had bit parts on Broadway in Call Me Madam, Guys and Dolls, and Can-Can before West Side Story, which earned her reputation and stardom. She turns 78 on Jan. 23. She was married to Tony Mordente, who played "Action" in the movie.

She was the original Velma in "Chicago" (I saw her on Broadway in it in 1976).

Obama gave her the Presidential Medal of Freedom in August 2009.

I blame Obama.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 29, 2010 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Tack, ftb. Hon är säker på en maträtt. Och hennes man Ola är en stilig karl.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 29, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

But, as you know, Mudgie, she and Ole are divorced now. How you can call her edible, however, is a story for another day ... *indeed*.


Posted by: ftb3 | December 29, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

I was SHOCKED to learn today that even after being cured of his insidious bow tie disease, Tucker Carlson is still a pekkerhed. Now, I'm not a whole hearted or even a half hearted supporter of Michael Vick, but-

Posted by: kguy1 | December 29, 2010 12:38 PM | Report abuse

"Edible"?? Is that what that translated to? I swear to god, what I plugged into Babelfish was that she was a dish.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 29, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Well, Mudge, in some circles, that may be one and the same.

Posted by: russianthistle | December 29, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Yes, weed, that's true. But there are subtleties in the language. I didn't say "edible," I said "dish." My mom wouldn't smack me for "dish."

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 29, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse


Thanks for the link. It is certainly good to hear Carlson preface his stupid statement that he is a self-anointed Christian.

Beyond being illogical and hypocritical, he is immoral and un-Christian, or at least on a basis that has been accepted by most people who have a 1st grade understanding of the Bible.

Why, by Carlson's logic, I guess we probably needed to have executed George Bush. I just wonder now why we didn't?

Posted by: russianthistle | December 29, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Should have perplexed Babelfish with "delectable," 'Mudge...

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 29, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

On and off snow showers today here on the left coast. The weather man says it could go on all day and night. Started at 7:00 AM PST and over an inch has accumulated. Temp right around freezing. But a while ago the clouds parted briefly for a blue sky and the sunshine. Back snowing again.

Posted by: bh72 | December 29, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

And I wonder how Babelfish would handle "pekkerhed"...

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 29, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Isn't "pekkerhed" Finnish?

Posted by: ScienceTim | December 29, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 29, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

No, then it'd be "pekkerfisk," wouldn't it?

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 29, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

The only words in Finnish I know, SciTim, are the swear words. Really. They're, um, "delectable."

Posted by: ftb3 | December 29, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

In a heartwarming Christmas tale:

"East Oak Cliff pastor Sandy McGill denies burglarizing congregant's house"

Posted by: bobsewell | December 29, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

I don't know if its even a word (either in Swedish, Finnish or Norwegian) but if it isn't it ought to be just based on the phonics alone: Tucker Carlson is lutesmårm.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 29, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

To be kär in Swedish is to be in love, as kär (or actually kärlek) is love (the noun) -- and kärlek translates literally into love play. The word älska (verb) also means love (in a more serious sense).

*waiting for a moment while Mudge finishes his cold shower*

Okay, then.

Here's the next lesson, which includes a word play joke:

If you are really sweet on someone, you are "förälskad".

If the two of you get engaged, you are "förlovad".

If you get married, you are then ...
(well, let me explain. The reflexive term to get married (verb) is "att gifta sig". BUT, if you leave the reflexive part off and make the word a noun (i.e., "gift"), it means "poison".

Soooooo, once you are förälskad, and then förlovad, you now become förgiftad.

It's a joke, eh? It's funnier when you don't have to explain it.

There will be a quiz tomorrow.


Posted by: ftb3 | December 29, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

The Achenblog didn't even crack the Top 25:

Posted by: yellojkt | December 29, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Bob, that heartwarming tale belongs next to this one:

Police: Man stole video game from boy's casket

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 29, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Well this is impressive,

Posted by: dmd3 | December 29, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Here's the top 25 songs of the year (so says I-Have-No-Idea_who_She-Is):

I am inordinantly proud of the fact that that only have I ever heard of NONE of these songs before this moment, I haven't even heard of 20 of the 25 performers. Go ahead, tell me you listen to that No. 1 hit all the time.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 29, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

I'm about as big a geezer as mudge on that list, but Song #1 (or at least the clean version) was featured on Glee this season.

Last night I worked my way through the the top 10 and do like the Titus Andronicus song, but the rest aren't exactly making me rush to the iTunes store.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 29, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

I would Mudge, except that I'd have to say words like [redacted] and [expletive deleted].

Posted by: MsJS | December 29, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Like Mudge, I've never knowingly listened to any of the songs. But (hipster that I am) I've actually heard of nine of the performers.

Posted by: bobsewell | December 29, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Tom Lehrer made the list, MsJS?

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 29, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

I wish, Scotty.

Who could forget such classics as:
"I Got It from Agnes"
"The Old Dope Peddler"
"I Hold Your Hand in Mine"

(if you don't know, don't ask)

Posted by: MsJS | December 29, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

To me, one of the strange things about that list is that I went on the Intertubes and found a handful of other top 25 lists, and there's almost no crossover between all those lists and this one. For instance, Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now" is on a lot of lists (as it should be; and I listen to that one a lot). And on those other lists I've heard of three-quarters or more of the performers, if not the songs: Black-Eyed Peas, Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Katy Perry, etc. (I mean, hey, c'mon, I watch Saturday Night Live, yanoo?)

The only really good thing about ANY of those lists is that Justin Bieber isn't on ANY of them. Which must say something, but I'm not sure what.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 29, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

*noting a certain theme in the pop artists 'Mudge is aware of* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 29, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Oh, *EXPLETIVE* -- Billy Taylor died of a heart attack, at the age of 89. He was a tremendous jazz pianist and artist. I met him several years ago at a fundraiser for a nonprofit (on whose Board I sat, if one may articulate is as such). He was a bit aloof, but nicely so. He has a daughter who is an attorney (prosecutor? former prosecutor?).

*Dang!* They're dropping like flies, I must say.

Posted by: ftb3 | December 29, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I have neither the time nor the technology to confirm this, but based on a quick read and a small listening sample I am familiar with either most of the artists, or the songs, or both. I blame the Boy.

Posted by: Ivansmom | December 29, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Occupational hazard, I-mom.

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 29, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

I-mom, I blame Obama.

Posted by: MsJS | December 29, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Being called yeanling makes me feel all fuzzy and about to be butchered, Yoki.

I think you were referring to translators of Tolstoy now. I thought "Carmichael sucked" was a potshot at Hoagy Carmichael, which is unfair, even if you're not a Georgia fan.

And I do know who Bing Crosby is...

Which shows that I was raised by parents of a certain generation.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | December 29, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Mudge (and Yello)-you should consider listening to her #6 band, Kings Go Forth. The track she picked is not one of my favorites, but I've been listening to them on and off for a few months since they did a show in Mpls.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 29, 2010 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Ah, the Garrett translation is available at Project Gutenberg. I have just completed Jorge Amado's "Home is the Sailor" so this day's reading has a theme.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | December 29, 2010 6:40 PM | Report abuse

The top 25-all at once

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 29, 2010 7:36 PM | Report abuse

Hey everybody, hi Cassandra! Company is gone and the holidays are almost over, I can hardly wait to have my life back!

Actually, we had a great visit with Mr. T's brother and family, but I am looking forward to rest and a return to a somewhat normal life tomorrow. I will walk! I will talk to friends! I will wash five loads of sheets and towels!

Cassandra, I hope your daughter continues to improve. This having a baby, they don't call it labor for nothing. Once upon a time I read (in Scientific American, IIRC) that it takes a million calories to bring a pregnancy to a successful end. That's a lot of energy and wear and tear on a mother's body.

I've never watched Oprah because I just don't watch television. You folks know me, I'm an internet junkie. Ours was out on Christmas evening and then a couple of more times in the next two days. Mr. T went out yesterday morning to chat with the Time Warner technicians. The problem? A squirrel chewed through the line.

Have a good evening, all!

Posted by: slyness | December 29, 2010 7:40 PM | Report abuse

ScienceKid#2 (aka "The PopCultureKid") claims to know of 7 of those songs. I am also reliably informed that I have heard "Glee" performances of two of those songs, even though I was unaware of that fact.

Posted by: ScienceTim | December 29, 2010 7:44 PM | Report abuse

ftb-I was surprised at the great sadness I felt to hear of Billy Taylor's death. We never met, but he added so much to my musical education. He is the reason at least one of the radio presets on every vehicle I've ever owned has been a jazz station.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | December 29, 2010 8:04 PM | Report abuse

Good evening, all.

I've heard most of the Post's top 25 songs, and like what I've heard well enough.

Saw Titus Andronicus at a punk festival in the summer of '09, I thought they were OK, though they have a great name (of course).

I think Ce Lo Green's album's quite good, a real throwback to late 60s/early 70s r&b, and worthy listening despite the novely hit. My oldest turned me on to Kid Cudi some time back - uneven, but he can be really good.

I've wanted to see Kylesa for some time now, I think they're really interesting in a System of a Down kinda way.

Rihanna/Drake - that's one I've heard way way too much already.

On another note, good to see the UMD football team send Fridge off with a big win in the Miltary Bowl, and --- wow, a really spectacular shoorting star (verging on a bolide) just shot past my back window. Must have been something pretty big if I could see it from in my house with the lights on.

Yes, I made a wish.

Speaking of which, MsJS, thanks for the congrats for the Tiara this week, though I think LiT should wear it over New Year's. Always ends up getting tangled up in the 16-year old boy/Harpo Marx mop I'm sporting these days, amyway. But thankfully, no full moon this week...


Posted by: -bc- | December 29, 2010 8:53 PM | Report abuse

SCC: "anyway"

A word I probably use far too often.

Fie upon me.


Posted by: -bc- | December 29, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

I will second bc's recommendation of the Ce Lo Green album. Verrrry soulful. Almost Barry White caliber mood music.

And I'm sorry. I can't see Drake without thinking 'Jimmy Brooks'. Yet another Canucki export taking over our music industry. This NSFW song of his is pretty star-studded:

Posted by: yellojkt | December 29, 2010 9:12 PM | Report abuse

And I found a video by that other snowback on the Vevo Top 20 videos.

C'mon, click the link. You know you are curious.

Posted by: yellojkt | December 29, 2010 9:44 PM | Report abuse

For those trying to make calendars (hello, FTB), here is some info from Monica Hesse's chat in today's WaPo.

Counting the days
Actually, I find that shutterfly is a great site for calendar creation. For the past three years, I've made up a calendar showcasing my photos taken from the preceding year and given it out as Christmas presents. Easy to do, and a personalized gift.

* –
December 29, 2010 2:31 PM
* Permalink

Monica Hesse :

Are you still there, calendar-seeker? It's possible that you're already using the best site. Doesn't that make you feel good?
– December 29, 2010 2:36 PM

And for those of us reading Wolf Hall by Hillary Mantel (hello, Yoki), there's an article by Daniel Mendelsohn on the Vatican Library that touches on Wolf Hall and other Renaissance issues.

I'm sorry that I can't link to it, but it's the Jan. 3, 2011 issue.

Posted by: rickoshea11 | December 29, 2010 9:55 PM | Report abuse

OOPS, sorry. I forgot to mention that the article is in the New Yorker, but perhaps you knew that.

Posted by: rickoshea11 | December 29, 2010 10:02 PM | Report abuse

Okay. How about Shakira?

Posted by: yellojkt | December 29, 2010 10:04 PM | Report abuse

Remember when Mudge joked about it being a good time for Canadians to invade over the holidays - he wasn't so far off :-)

Posted by: dmd3 | December 29, 2010 11:13 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Shakira, has anyone heard from Omni lately?

I watched the Merle Haggard and Paul McCartney portions of the KC Honors last night. Thought McCartney's was well done - loved how everyone joined in with Hey Jude at the end.

Merle Haggard certainly had a tough life. I saw him open for Bob Dylan in Feb 2005. I didn't think I particularly liked his music either, but he put on a great show. He was witty and charming and played great songs. He even took a jab or 2 at Bush, in an anti-war way, which went over well in Seattle. He played part of Okie from Muskogee, which I hated when it came out, but 30 years or so made it somewhat ironic. He stopped about halfway through, saying, "You lefties don't want to hear that" - but the audience had been clapping and singing along. He made me a fan that night.

Posted by: seasea1 | December 29, 2010 11:44 PM | Report abuse

it's been kind of busy here in the belly of the beast for the last few months. little time to contribute to the goings on here.

this is just to say that i hope the boss and all the good people who visit here will have a healthy 2011 with many moments of happiness.

this place, and the folks who make it happen, remains a delight--truly a source of wit and wisdom every time i visit.

Posted by: butlerguy | December 30, 2010 5:55 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, you all.

After a lifetime of "take responsibility for your own actions", delegating resolutions would be refreshing. In the weight loss department, over the years, I have lost a whole small person, but I must like her, as I keep finding her again...

I miss Omni's comments, too, seasea, as well as some others, Kim comes to mind. Good to see Scotty's photos of the bph, everyone looks to be jolly, as it should be. Glad Cassandra has rejoined us. Hey Cassandra!

The Wapo has an article on the EPA and it's newest Chesapeake Bay plan for The District and six states, W.VA, VA, MD, DE, PA, NY. They expect compliance by 2025. Here's hoping, sure would like to be able to eat big fat Bay oysters, Lynnhaven oysters, again, some day soon.

Breakfast is Bermuda Fish, eggs benedict with asparagus on top, ambrosia, popovers and butter and cherry preserves, freshly ground coffee beans, brewed within the last 10 minutes. Happy holidays.

Posted by: VintageLady | December 30, 2010 6:07 AM | Report abuse

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

Good morning, friends. Morning, Vintage Lady, it's good to be back! I hope you are well, and your family too.

Slyness, my daughter had a really hard time during labor because of blood pressure issues, and she still hasn't gotten control of that. Young people just don't see themselves as being sick and needing medications, but that's not true. And blood pressure is called the silent killer so there aren't that many symptoms, and the person thinks they're fine. I'm on the job though, making myself a total nuisance, and trying to help too. We need your prayers.

When I was working, a couple of my co-workers and myself were sitting together for break, and the nurse came in and took our blood pressures. One of the ladies sitting with us had a blood pressure so high, the nurse sent her home with instructions to go to her doctor. Before the nurse took our pressures, that woman was laughing and talking, and did not seem to have a problem at all!

Thanks, sneaks and MsJS.

The thing about being a Christian is that one follows the teachings of Christ, and Christ is the example. In other words, not complicated as to what to do, complication arises in the doing. And not because one lacks knowledge because Christ is a great teacher and he's the example, but because we love our sins and want to keep them. And we feel we'll be losers if we follow Christ's example.

Time to go, have babysitting duties this morning. He's just a sweetie, a real sweetie.

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

Posted by: cmyth4u | December 30, 2010 7:03 AM | Report abuse

One last note on being a's an ongoing work. First there is repentance for sin, then accepting Christ as Lord and Saviour, after that the Holy Spirit leads and guides the person in all things. So we have help, not left to our own devices. We serve a good God! He thought of everything!

Just thought you might want to know!

Posted by: cmyth4u | December 30, 2010 7:14 AM | Report abuse

Good grey morning to all, and hi Cassandra! I hope your daughter is paying attention to the doctor's about her blood pressure. Does she have any idea why it's high? And therefore some idea of what to do about it, besides take the medication?

I know, questions, questions.

I hope you enjoy babysitting. He sounds like a joy. How was the granddaughter's Christmas?

Thanks for your comments on faith. You are so on target about this, as about everything!

I'll ride up the mountain when I get the laundry done. It's going to take all morning, for sure.

Posted by: slyness | December 30, 2010 7:45 AM | Report abuse

Lawyer joke for the day:

Posted by: yellojkt | December 30, 2010 7:49 AM | Report abuse

I realize I don't always pay attention, but doesn't it seem as if the early morning sky has been unusually beautiful lately? I kept staring at the Venus, Moon, Spica, Saturn alignment as if I were seeing these things for the first time.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | December 30, 2010 8:00 AM | Report abuse




Butlerguy!! *hearty handshake* :-)

I've got to tell you all, life is so much nicer when one's cable modem and wireless router are on speaking terms.

And the Dawn Patrol was more like the Ghost Patrol, but them's the breaks the day before a holiday, it would seem. I wish everyone a safe, joyous and warm NYE, and may we all have a simply incomparable 2011!!!

*no-I-haven't-had-the-usual-coffee-just-yet-but-I'm-working-on-it Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | December 30, 2010 8:02 AM | Report abuse


She gets upset when I try to talk with her about it. It never actually came down after the baby, and it was sky high then. I have it, and her father had it too, so she's got it coming from both sides. And of course, she doesn't eat right. There's a reason these fast food places stay in business, young people and old people don't feel like fixing their food!

Santa brought the g-girl what she wanted, a scooter. They're all the rage here. Hers hasn't been put together, but maybe soon. I heard from one of my grandsons, he texted me and wished me a Merry Christmas. The one that looks exactly like his father, haven't heard from the other one or my daughter-in-law. They're big guys now, so don't have much time for grandma! But that's okay, grandma still loves them to pieces, just don't get the chance to see them much.

Got to go, much to do before the babysitting job.

Posted by: cmyth4u | December 30, 2010 8:17 AM | Report abuse

'morning all. The first thing I thought when I read the list of the best 25 tunes of 2010 was: "What? Brian Eno's still alive!!!" I've been to a Peter Gabriel concert or two so I'm happy to see him receive this (dubious) award. The name of one or two other performers sounded fmiliar, that was about it. I live fiercely in the past. Although I finally got tired of the carpy radio in the Subie and changed it for a cheap aftermarket model that sounds 10 times better and has an auxiliary input for the iPod. Imagine that, listening to my music in the car, how modern.

We have achieved a winter milestone in this winter that isn't a real one, a pair pileated woodpeckers visits the feeders. I really like those big, colourful and noisy birds. Another pleasant surprise is the frequent visits of a couple of red-breasted nuthatch. I have yet to take a good picture of these skittish birds though. Speaking of skittish bird here is Mrs. Denizen's latest Christmas quilt, Skittish Bird. It's a small (16"x24") classic.

There is almost no snow on the ground and rain and warm temperature (8C/56F) are in the forecast for tomorrow. There will be no snow left in this region crazy for winter sports. I've seen the first ice fishermen on the river yesterday, that is as late as I've ever seen.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | December 30, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

The ambition of EPA's Chesapeake regulatory program is impressive. I suspect it'll be undone as compliance becomes onerous and as the House of Representatives cuts EPA's funding. For all I know, Virginia's attorney general might attack the whole thing as unconstitutional interference in the state's sovereign affairs.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | December 30, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

I resolve to continue to hope the average consumer wises up for good:


Posted by: Scottynuke | December 30, 2010 9:18 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle.

You guys really have to watch this; it's fascinating:

Hans Rosling's 200 Countries, 200 Years, 4 Minutes 48 Seconds - The Joy of Stats - BBC Four

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | December 30, 2010 9:38 AM | Report abuse

New Kit

Posted by: dmd3 | December 30, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

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