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Posted at 7:20 AM ET, 01/26/2011

Obama: compete; GOP: be afraid.

By Joel Achenbach

If I'm a GOP strategist, I'm worried this morning. The official Republican response (by Paul Ryan) to the SOTU was followed by the official Tea Party response (by Michele Bachmann). Huh? I thought ideological factionalism was a Democratic specialty. Is Paul Ryan too liberal for the Tea Party? Didn't he faithfully invoke the sacredness of the Constitution, as mandated by Tea Party ideological requirements? True, only CNN carried the Bachmann response (um, remind me why), but it highlighted the internecine (someday I'll learn to pronounce it) battles of the GOP.

The bigger problem for the hypothetical GOP strategist is that Obama is running on Reaganesque optimism (tempered by stern talk about turning off the TV and starting to freakin' compete, people!), while Ryan basically told people to be afraid. I've mentioned this before: The rhetoric of some people on the right these days strongly implies that we live in the Soviet Union circa 1936, or China circa 1966, or North Korea circa 2011 -- a totalitarian state that crushes the spirit of the individual. (Or is that overstated on my part? Sorry, it's like a twitch.)

Ryan didn't go quite that far, but he did paint a picture of a country on the brink of a fiscal calamity that could forever diminish our aspirations and make our grandkids hate us and whatnot. Also, people will choose to live the easy life on a government welfare check rather than get a job:

We are at a moment, where if government's growth is left unchecked and unchallenged, America's best century will be considered our past century. This is a future in which we will transform our social safety net into a hammock, which lulls able-bodied people into lives of complacency and dependency.

Depending on bureaucracy to foster innovation, competitiveness, and wise consumer choices has never worked -- and it won't work now.

We need to chart a new course.

Speaking candidly, as one citizen to another: We still have time ... but not much time. If we continue down our current path, we know what our future will be.

Just take a look at what's happening to Greece, Ireland, the United Kingdom and other nations in Europe. They didn't act soon enough; and now their governments have been forced to impose painful austerity measures: large benefit cuts to seniors and huge tax increases on everybody.

Their day of reckoning has arrived. Ours is around the corner. That is why we must act now.

The hammock line gave me such a flashback! Not since the Bee Gees topped the charts has that been the Republican pitch. Who wrote that line, Ted Nugent??

So much of politics is tone. Ryan looked deeply worried -- furrows on the forehead, etc. It's not a sunny message to say the least. Regardless of where you stand on the debt issue, from a purely political standpoint I'm not sure that its a winning strategy to appeal to people's fears that we're about to go down the tubes as a nation.

Bachmann, for her part, airbrushed George W. Bush out of the recent economic history of the country. She showed graphs of the unemployment rate and the deficit that distorted the record. The graphs showed the deficit jumping enormously, suddenly, when Obama took office, and they showed a simultaneous spike in the unemployment rate. This tactic will succeed only with people who were asleep or in sensory deprivation chambers throughout 2008 and do not recall the country's descent into recession, including the free-fall of September 2008.

Bachmann:

Two years ago, when Barack Obama became our president, unemployment was 7.8 percent and our national debt stood at what seemed like a staggering $10.6 trillion dollars. We wondered whether the president would cut spending, reduce the deficit and implement real job-creating policies. Unfortunately, the president's strategy for recovery was to spend a trillion dollars on a failed stimulus program, fueled by borrowed money.

"The White House promised us that all the spending would keep unemployment under 8 percent. Well not only did that plan fail to deliver, but within three months the national jobless rate spiked to 9.4 percent. It hasn't been lower for 20 straight months. While the government grew, we lost more than 2 million jobs."

By the way, Paul Ryan had said just minutes earlier, "There is no doubt the President came into office facing a severe fiscal and economic situation."

Obama says the future is ours to win. We still have the biggest economy, the best universities. We invented Facebook and Google.

It was, transparently, a campaign speech, aimed directly at the TV audience. It was short on legislative proposals, compared to past SOTU addresses. And by the way, he didn't bring up foreign policy -- war, stuff like that -- until 9:57 p.m. in a speech scheduled for 9 p.m. (but of course delayed by the annual Festival of Clapping).

By Joel Achenbach  | January 26, 2011; 7:20 AM ET
 
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Comments

http://www.sinfest.net/archive_page.php?comicID=2992

Posted by: DNA_Girl | January 26, 2011 8:34 AM | Report abuse

JA-a typo
Regardless if where you stand on the debt issue

Should be "Regardless of..."

Posted by: frostbitten1 | January 26, 2011 8:35 AM | Report abuse

"Internecine" is pronounced just like it is spelled, "shah-den-froid."

'Morning, Boodle.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 26, 2011 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Actually, Republicans should be very relieved today. Obama gave them a way to avoid their Unilateral Assured Destruction policies, and save face while doing it. Now we get to see if they are smart enough to realize it or dumb enough to fight it. Okay, we know which one Bachmann is. But it will be fun to see who follows her over the cliff.

Posted by: NomoStew | January 26, 2011 8:52 AM | Report abuse

WaPo editorial today seems to be a bit sniffy. Apparently, Obama wasn't good enough last night, because if he were good enough, all of the country's problems (not to mention the world's problems) would be solved.

Or something like that.

Like I opined in the last kit, I think Obama expertly and quite subtly (not to mention elegantly) delivered a bunch of "eff-u" things up to the Rethugs and spoke directly to the "real" Americans to get off their (our) backsides and go innovate.

Or something like that.

Keep warm, Cassandra. And kick that pneumonia to the curb, eh?

Posted by: ftb3 | January 26, 2011 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Cassandra-Princess Sparkle Pony is Michelle Bachmann.

ftb-I believe your analysis of the SOTU is spot on.

I wonder if Sparkle Pony realized the POTUS had stolen her thunder on medical malpractice reform. Probably did, but realized most people who tuned in for her wouldn't watch the SOTU.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | January 26, 2011 9:06 AM | Report abuse

You are absolutely correct, of course, about the stupidity of Bachmann's approach. Unfortunately, it will doubtless prove popular.

The reason why arguments like Bachmann's often work is that charts like hers imply a narrative that appeal to an inner bias. In this case, clearly, it is that big spendin' Obama kills jobs. And because her target audience is so primed to believe this, they have no motivation to dig more deeply into the matter.

One of the annoying things educated people do that makes them a bore at parties is to point out that correlation isn't causation. Just because two things change in tandem doesn't mean one directly causes the other. Sometimes two trends just happen to coincide.

But more often, what happens is that there is a third variable that drives the other two. In this case, as Joel points out, the thing that drove both the surging deficit and high unemployment is the collapse of economy which predates them both.

The recognition of the common cause for both of these effects implies that the correct thing to do is to focus on the structural problems and regulatory lapses that caused the original collapse. Which is exactly what Obama is doing. But to the far right this doesn't make a good narrative and so can be conveniently ignored.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | January 26, 2011 9:07 AM | Report abuse

"Win the future." Kinda catchy slogan. It's definitely more noble than our nation's historical policy: "Take the future, by treaty or by force."

Posted by: GomerGross | January 26, 2011 9:11 AM | Report abuse

'morning all. -15C and snowing thisd morning, it's getting better and better.

Princess Sparkle Pony's deconnection with reality is a little frightening to be. BTW this "government grew" meme is a blatant lie. With police officers, teachers and other state and city employee being laid off all over the place government is actually on a crash diet that isn't good for the economy. The "growth" in government referred to by the Tea Party is limited to the 10-year Census spike. Me think that looking at a single slice of time to see a "growth" in government is more than a little disingenuous, it is dishonest.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | January 26, 2011 9:14 AM | Report abuse

I want the documentation on Bachman's claim that Obama 'promised' an unemployment rate of 8%. Her own chart showed that unemployment has peaked and is starting to decline. She looked very uncomfortable spouting numbers. She clearly had no concept what they meant.

As for "aimed directly at the TV audience", more like aimed slightly to the right of the camera doing the broadcast.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Ms. Bachmann has a pretty tenuous grasp on history of any distance. Here is Anderson Cooper calling her out on some pretty outlandish assertions about our founding fathers:

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/keeping-them-honest-anderson-cooper-ridicules-michele-bachmann-for-flunking-history/

Count the inaccuracies in just this one sentence:

"But we also know that the very founders that wrote those documents worked tirelessly until slavery was no more in the United States and I think it is high time that we recognize the contribution of our fore-bearers who worked tirelessly, men like John Quincy Adams, who would not rest until slavery was extinguished in the country."

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, y'all.

Warm muffins, assorted hot beverages and chilled pineapple juice on the table.

yello, there were two cameras at the Bachman speech, the TV camera and the Tea Party website's camera. She chose to look into the lens of the latter while speaking.

As to Obama's 'promise' of 8 percent unemployment, the reference is a January 2009 document called "The Job Impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan" from Christina Romer, chairwoman of the president's Council of Economic Advisers, and Jared Bernstein, the vice president's top economic adviser. In it the authors gave their assessments of unemployment rates with and without the then-proposed economic stimulus package. And they indeed projected a peak unemployment rate of about 8 percent if the stimulus package were enacted.

Posted by: MsJS | January 26, 2011 9:36 AM | Report abuse

Watched the SOTU & Ryan's response; didn't watch Bachmann - was too depressed watching Purdue get slaughtered by tOSU at that point. :-(

Joel's actually got it spot on. Obama's speech was a Reaganesque campaign opener, full of positive vision and "morning in America." Ryan gets stuck being Walter Mondale, reminding people of Carter's "malaise" and promising to raise taxes with both hands. :-)

We've seen THAT movie and know how it ends.

As to the substance of Obama's speech - frankly, I didn't see any. No concrete proposals (except his bizarre backtrack on malpractice reform; guess he figured the trial lawyers are already in his pocket) and a promise to veto any bill containing earmarks (yeah, right! He'll either claim he had no choice but to sign it; or he'll come up with a new name for them.)

I worked for the Feds for 17 years, and the President reminded me of way too many senior managers who had gotten promoted on their ability to say what their bosses wanted to hear. I kept waiting for "work smarter, not harder" and "embrace change;" both of them would have given me the win in buzzword bingo. :-)

I think the C+ grade somebody gave was about right.

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 26, 2011 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Slavery was on fire???

Here's the cute story of the day. Vladimir Nabokov, lepidopterist extraordinaire and sometimes writer, got his observation-backed hunch vindicated by DNA analysis, 65 years after he wrote the paper and 33 years after his death.
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/01/science/01butterfly.html?src=me&ref=general

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | January 26, 2011 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Nabokov was shrewd enough to dismiss theories of 'land bridges" that had been contrived to explain geographic distributions of animals and plants. There were never any geological data to explain such land bridges.

I take it that Nabokov's comparative morphology must have been top notch. I am guessing that someone reviewing his work today can see why he thought serial migrations from Asia were more likely than convergent evolution--with New World blue butterflies evolving into near-replicas of Asian ones.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 26, 2011 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Michelle Bachman is the new torch carrier for the politics of stupid. It warms my heart that stupid people have enduring representation in Congress. No one is left owt. This iz gud.

Warmest Regards,


CowTown

Posted by: jp1954 | January 26, 2011 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Howdy y'all. There was one specific proposal slipped in there I guarantee was heard by everyone in Oklahoma and Texas: to pay for sustainable energy advances, stop subsidizing oil companies. Oklahoma might be okay with that, as long as natural gas companies are separate. That's where the big momentum is now, in fossil fuels.

Another was to freeze domestic spending for five years.

Posted by: Ivansmom | January 26, 2011 9:58 AM | Report abuse

AB,
The formula for the SOTU for too many years has been a laundry list of half-baked policy initiatives punctuated by red meat applause lines. This one was the lite version of that formula. The initiatives were a little fuzzier and the pitches had a few curveballs. He linked repeal of DADT with requiring college campuses to allow military recruiters. Some seemed designed to make moderates and some conservatives nod their heads in agreement even if it wasn't a policy they would normally support 100%. And he stayed completely away from some polarizing issues like gun control.

I would give it a C+, maybe a B-.

Ryan on the other hand went into full Jindal babytalk mode with buzzwords and dog whistles throughout.

Two lines in particular are gallingly disingenous:

"On this current path, when my three children — who are now 6, 7, and 8 years old — are raising their own children, the federal government will double in size, and so will the taxes they pay."

Nobody anywhere is predicting a doubling of inflation adjusted net taxation rates.

"If we act soon, and if we act responsibly, people in and near retirement will be protected."

Social Security is solvent for at least another 25 years. It's not the people near retirement that should be worrying, but I'd warn them to keep their hands on their wallets. A major dismantling of benefits seems to be some guarded goal of the GOP.

This one only merits a D+.

As for Princess Sparkle Pony, they don't give letter grades to the kids in Special Ed.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 10:08 AM | Report abuse

If Bachmann just showed us her hoo-haa, all the interest in her would cease.

Posted by: motogp46 | January 26, 2011 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I-mom - it's going to be interesting to see how this works. This was Obama's line, according to the text version:

"We need to get behind this innovation. And to help pay for it, I'm asking Congress to eliminate the billions in taxpayer dollars we currently give to oil companies. I don't know if you've noticed, but they're doing just fine on their own. So instead of subsidizing yesterday's energy, let's invest in tomorrow's."

Problem - most large oil companies are also big (by some definition) in "alternative energy" innovation and are getting huge subsidies for that. So, are you going to stop subsidizing BP Solar because their parent can fund the innovation out of profits? (That would be new, if it happened.) And are you going to subsidize other solar power research that don't happen to be owned by an oil company?

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 26, 2011 10:21 AM | Report abuse

The butterflies may be cute, but how do they taste?

http://news.discovery.com/human/insects-food-worms-environment-110123.html

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 10:33 AM | Report abuse

If we're really good little boys and girls and close our eyes real tight and cross our fingers and toes and spin around three times and wish with all our might, Princess Horse's Azz, I mean Sparkle Pony, will make a senate run in 2012 and get her head handed to her by Amy Klobuchar and become a commentator of Faux Nuz.

Posted by: kguy1 | January 26, 2011 10:40 AM | Report abuse

I think Stuever's take on the culture in which this SOTU was given is pretty fascinating.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/26/AR2011012600072.html

Posted by: RD_Padouk | January 26, 2011 10:47 AM | Report abuse

K-guy-please let's wish for her to run for president. Then the pain will be spread around. (there's a manure analogy in there somewhere)

Posted by: frostbitten1 | January 26, 2011 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Indeed, RD_P, although I disagree with Hank on the salmon joke -- that went over quite well, even with the delayed reaction.

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 26, 2011 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the answer concerning Princess Sparkle Pony, but why that name? Bear with me, I don't get it. Probably because I haven't read much about this person in the media or anywhere else for that matter, or it could be just natural for me, a little slow on the uptake.

Is it the dress?

Posted by: cmyth4u | January 26, 2011 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Hmm. Well, I see that when I previously reacted to Cooper's critique of PSP (Princess Sparkle Pony), I was incorrect in thinking that she had restricted herself to Jamestown -- she really, truly, seems to have believed some amazing things about the founding of the country. No surprise that she should be such a total ignoramus, I guess -- and that the Tea Party is just the audience to buy it.

Posted by: ScienceTim | January 26, 2011 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Concerning the speech..

I like the idea of innovation. I've always thought we needed to get back to that in a big way. For me, it seems we lost the lead in that. Perhaps that isn't true, but making things and being the leader in new technology and anything is the way to go. Of course, education needs to be at the forefront for this to happen, and yes, get the kids off televison.

And I've never waivered in my belief that we as Americans can do this, and do it in a big way. The Republicans are talking fear, but fear can be used to sort of steer people into doing good things. Not sitting on your hands. Not hiding, not retreating, but moving forward with everything you got, and hey, people, we got a lot. God is good.

Posted by: cmyth4u | January 26, 2011 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Cassandra-perhaps others will have more detail on the Sparkle Pony origins but originally Princess Sparkle Pony was a reference to the My Little Pony line of toys popular in the 80s (if I remember correctly). Then you add the punch line "there must be a pony in there somewhere" when a lot of manure is being shoveled and you have Bachmann. Blogger Andrew Sullivan is often credited with fitting the name to her. There is an "artist formerly known as Princess Sparkle Pony" but I believe he had to give up on the PSP identity when referring to Bachmann by that name gained currency.
Take all of that with a grain of salt. I have but a passing acquaintance with popular culture.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | January 26, 2011 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Feds can leave 2 hours early to avoid dangerous travel conditions this afternoon, per OPM:

http://www.opm.gov/status/

Of course, some of us were home anyway...

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 26, 2011 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Feds can leave 2 hours early to avoid dangerous travel conditions this afternoon, per OPM:

http://www.opm.gov/status/

Of course, some of us were home anyway...

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 26, 2011 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Most industrialized nations of the world are socialist and as a result are thriving. The US cannot shake the capitalism mantle and as a result we are sinking....and fast.

Posted by: Maddogg | January 26, 2011 11:55 AM | Report abuse

The 'artist formerly known as Princess Sparkle Pony' aka Peteykins still updates his blog.

http://sparklepony.blogspot.com/

Here is a website that uses the appellation for Bachmann:

http://www.mnprogressiveproject.com/page/Michele_Bachmann_BIZARRO_WORLD

I do love the phrase I found on a DailyKos diary that Bachmann relies on her "her own math and special Princess Sparkle Pony World of Imagination Fact Set" for most of her historical, economic, and political claims.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Well, it was worth repeating, but I only hit "Submit" once, I swear! *L*

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 26, 2011 11:57 AM | Report abuse

There is no way out of the debt dilemma except by increasing taxes and creating millions millions millions of new well-paying jobs. Until then its a race to the bottom.

The one gleaming ray of hope is that the defense budget can be halved and that will really begin to delete the debt. Defense and related expense is $1.4 Trillion Dollars. Cut it by half and that's like $750 Billion smackers.

Posted by: Maddogg | January 26, 2011 12:07 PM | Report abuse

"Ryan basically told people to be afraid." That tactic is bad enough, but worse when Ryan combines it with racial euphemisms like "able-bodied people lulled into lives of complacency and dependency."

Posted by: Carstonio | January 26, 2011 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Good one, Joel

Posted by: teddymzuri | January 26, 2011 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Ryan has often shown himself to know nothing about economics and he does it again, as it fits his purpose. Ireland situation has nothing to do with Greece's problems. The UK situation is largely self-imposed on ideological grounds. Spain's credit crisis is entirely private, the Government was essentially debt-free and wasn't running a deficit before its economy imploded in the credit crunch. That Ryan put them all in the same bag shows either how ignorant he is or haw crass he is he willing to be.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | January 26, 2011 12:23 PM | Report abuse

The GOP gives an obvious solution to all our problems: cutting corporate taxes.

Have you heard that ours are the second-highest? I have, about 55 times in the last three days.

Seems they have their talking point down. That retreat a week or so ago done good.

No mention that our corporate taxes are higher because our personal taxes are lower. No mention that maybe we could cut corporate taxes and raise taxes on the wealthy to offset them.

Just cut baby!

Posted by: baldinho | January 26, 2011 12:32 PM | Report abuse

This from Wiki-
*****************
Bachmann had grown up in a Democratic family, but says she became a Republican during her senior year at Winona State. She told the (Minneapolis) Star Tribune that she was reading Gore Vidal's 1973 novel, Burr: "He was kind of mocking the Founding Fathers and I just thought, 'I just remember reading the book, putting it in my lap, looking out the window and thinking, 'You know what? I don't think I am a Democrat. I must be a Republican.'"
******************
This woman aspires to be president?

After Winona State she went on to law school at Oral Roberts, which law school eventually moved east and morphed into (wait for it) Regent University, alma mater of such distinguished folks as Monica Goodling (remember her, the other Monica) and Virginia Guv Bob McDonnell.

Posted by: kguy1 | January 26, 2011 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Diminish aspirations of our young people, says the Republican Party?

Their tax cuts have succeeded already.

When I went to college in the 1970s my tuition cost about 7 times the minimum wage. I could use the money from a day's labor to pay for my tuition.

Today, tuition at the same schools I attended cost 45 times the minimum wage. You have to work an entire semester to earn a semester's tuition. That doesn't include books, rent, heat, food, transportation or clothing.

Neither does either example includes taxes, which only reinforces my point: As a young man hard work and sacrifice lead to success. Today, the Republican Party has put that out of reach.

It's sickening.

Posted by: colonelpanic | January 26, 2011 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Whoever did Bauchman's make up should be strung up. The scariest thing about her response was her Halloween witchy make-up. Distracting and frankly made her look 'not-ready-for-prime-time" or the national stage.

Yes, I know it's awful that women are still judged by these things but clearly she hasn't been groomed in more than one way for the big leagues.

At least it was past ten when small children were in bed...

Posted by: k4man123 | January 26, 2011 12:46 PM | Report abuse

NASA has this spectacular imagery-based map of the Arctic Oscillation in full swing. It was nice and balmy in the Gulag.

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=48882&src=eoa-iotd

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 26, 2011 1:08 PM | Report abuse

A really splendid bit of local news: Rockville has its own Death Ray.

http://rockvillecentral.com/2011/01/its-curtains-for-the-death-ray.html/comment-page-1/#comment-8053

Posted by: ScienceTim | January 26, 2011 1:20 PM | Report abuse

k4man123 - Umm... you offered no judgment upon "Bauchman". You were, however, a little harsh toward her make-up applier.

Posted by: bobsewell | January 26, 2011 1:35 PM | Report abuse

With respect to the austerity moves the GOP is proposing I found it interesting how few commentes there were on the fact that the Euro countries who eschewed the keynsian approach and choose austerity are now double dipping.

Posted by: bob29 | January 26, 2011 1:40 PM | Report abuse

kguy, as a Marylander and a Democrat, given the choice between McDonnell and Martin O'Malley, I'd take McDonnell any day of the week. O'Malley's far too interested in his higher-level aspirations; e.g., HE won't raise taxes in the budget he submits, but if the General Assembly chooses to raise taxes to close the gaping hole he left, well then, that can't be counted against him, can it?

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 26, 2011 1:42 PM | Report abuse

colonelpanic - college tuition is near and dear to my heart, since I currently have three kids in college at the same time. So, I'll ask - what, precisely, did Republican tax cuts have to do with the rising cost of college education? What could have been done differently?

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 26, 2011 1:45 PM | Report abuse

ArmyBrat, as a Virginian and a Democrat, please do feel free to take McDonnell any day of the week. Just make it soon. And take Cuccinelli with him.

Posted by: kguy1 | January 26, 2011 1:51 PM | Report abuse

shrieking, I suspect that Ryan was just doing what so many other people do and conflating the countries as "PIIGS" (Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, Spain) - see e.g. http://www.economist.com/node/15838029

Yes, every country's situation is slightly different, but conflating partially-related ones is common on all sides of a debate.

The UK was, as you point out, self-imposed; when "UPIIGS" and "RUPIIGS" (Romania being the R) came into vogue, Cameron decided it was time to act. (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PIIGS )

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 26, 2011 1:52 PM | Report abuse

What "The Tea Party" Doesn't GET is that the liberal politics they are remonstrating against IS the TRUE Tea Party; in the old-fashioned sense of seeking liberation from oppressive politics which promulgated our current economy and hate divisive politics.
ALL CONSERVATISM is rooted in INSECURITY; fear that the other guy is as bad as you see-yourself as being.
Thus the need to distrust the motives of others, the need to Control politics and business; and to self-reassure by projecting an insecure interpretation of what you think "God" Thinks.
The socially insecure are unhappy, and selfish.
Loosen-up, and Feel-Safe.

Posted by: Arjuna1 | January 26, 2011 1:55 PM | Report abuse

The SOTU address was nice, but not much more than a pep rally. And the Republican response was a bigger buzz-kill than Buzz Killington.

And Michelle Bachmann is Apocalypse Death Pony.

Posted by: enogabal | January 26, 2011 2:04 PM | Report abuse

kguy - Cuccinelli is an entirely different story! :-)

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 26, 2011 2:10 PM | Report abuse

As a Marylander and a Democrat, I *don't* want McDonnell and *especially* Cuccinelli over here!

Bleah!

Obviously, we're on the front page, but -- so far at least -- there doesn't appear to be any reason to open the Bunker. Interesting, eh? Nevertheless, should we have to duck in, I suspect we would surprise Mudge dusting the Kinkeads. That wouldn't be a pretty sight .... (the Kinkeads, not the Mudge).

Posted by: ftb3 | January 26, 2011 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Ryan had his Jimmy Carter sweater moment: 'Be Very Scared!!" Bachmann was just ... wierd and scary. Obama was magisterial and Presidential. Isn't 2008 - 2010 looking more like era of GOP implosion than ever??

Posted by: jbh3 | January 26, 2011 2:21 PM | Report abuse

I was just thinking that too, ftb, about the relative calm in the responses here - nice change!

It's snowing like crazy here and it's not even the start of the storm yet. Just got back from the post office, very slippery out there. Happy I don't have to go anywhere today or tomorrow. I can play with the snow blower tomorrow morning.

Posted by: badsneakers | January 26, 2011 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, in much more important news, Jimmy fell off the stage.

http://www.tmz.com/2011/01/26/jimmy-buffett-falls-off-stage-video-flashing-lights-australia-concert-hospitalized-unconscious/

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 26, 2011 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, in much more important news, Jimmy fell off the stage.

http://www.tmz.com/2011/01/26/jimmy-buffett-falls-off-stage-video-flashing-lights-australia-concert-hospitalized-unconscious/

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 26, 2011 2:45 PM | Report abuse

I'll go and turn the heat up in the bunker and check the beverage supplies, just in case anyone needs refuge from the storm. Remember to leave the boots on the back porch, folks! The shop steward does get a bit testy when we track mud on the carpets. He doesn't like to pay for cleaning more than once a year. Since we had it done the week before Thanksgiving, we need to be careful.

Yes, very nice to have visitors who aren't spouting nonsense.

Posted by: slyness | January 26, 2011 3:00 PM | Report abuse

*&^%#*&^$% Movable Type. Movable my *&^%#^%

Aaaaaaaaaand this just in from Borowitz:

"JANUARY 26, 2011

Michele Bachmann Proposes “Don’t Add, Don’t Spell”

Reflects Core Tea Party Values, Says Minn. Lawmaker

"MINNEAPOLIS (The Borowitz Report) – In her official Tea Party response to President Obama’s State of the Union Address, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) offered a bold new policy initiative she called “Don’t Add, Don’t Spell.”

Rep. Bachmann called the proposal “a reflection of core Tea Party values” and said it would “deliver the American people from the tyranny of arithmetic, spelling, and punctuation.”

In addition to “Don’t Add, Don’t Spell,” Rep. Bachmann suggested slashing the Federal budget by eliminating nine of the first ten Amendments to the Constitution.

“I think you know which one I’d keep,” she chuckled, miming a Western gunslinger with her index fingers.

Rep. Bachmann’s odd onscreen appearance, in which she seemed to be staring off-camera for the duration of her speech, was initially blamed on “a squirrel that got into the studio and distracted her,” said one Tea Party official.

But the Minnesota congresswoman offered her own explanation: “I was looking off to one side because I was trying to read off Sarah Palin’s hand.”

In Washington, House Speaker John Boehner held a press conference after the President’s speech to declare, “This infernal week of civility is officially over.”

“The American people owe its representatives a huge debt of thanks,” Mr. Boehner added. “Tonight, each of us made the ultimate sacrifice any American can ever be called upon to make: sitting next to a person we despise.”

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 26, 2011 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I don't know, slyness. I think this bit from Maddog was nonsense:

"Most industrialized nations of the world are socialist and as a result are thriving. The US cannot shake the capitalism mantle and as a result we are sinking....and fast"

Really?

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 26, 2011 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Well, something's coming down that looks kind of sleetish at pretty good clip. Glad I'm not out in it, although I wish I had a fireplace and some cognac.

What can I tell ya?

Posted by: ftb3 | January 26, 2011 3:24 PM | Report abuse

I smiled at that one as well ArmyBrat, I could only think of China as being what he referred to, a brief look at the G20 reveals the vast majority are democracies.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G-20_major_economies

Posted by: dmd3 | January 26, 2011 3:25 PM | Report abuse

...and also this is pretty nonsensical:

"The one gleaming ray of hope is that the defense budget can be halved and that will really begin to delete the debt. Defense and related expense is $1.4 Trillion Dollars. Cut it by half and that's like $750 Billion smackers. "

Gee - according to this http://www.defense.gov/releases/release.aspx?releaseid=13281 the Defense budget request was $708 billion, which included $549 billion for the Department and another $159 billion for Iraq/Afghanistan.

The only 1.4 trillion number is the value of the DoD's assets - that is, that's the value of all the military bases, the ships, the planes, humvees, etc. Not really related to the budget.

Okay, (s)he's not being personally insulting, but nonsensical? Off by 700 billion dollars - I'd say so.

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 26, 2011 3:30 PM | Report abuse

ftb, I can fax you cognac, but not the fireplace.

However....
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsD1zoI7NYo

Posted by: MsJS | January 26, 2011 3:32 PM | Report abuse

MsJS, send in the requisition form and I'll get you one of the heavy-duty faxes that can handle a fireplace. :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 26, 2011 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Is it time to go off kit yet?
I vote Mr. Vincent Lonij "Most Adorable Man of the Day"

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110125172422.htm

Posted by: DNA_Girl | January 26, 2011 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Mmmmmmm. Big Fat Furry Flakes Fallin' Now.

Partially alliterative, which I think is just loverly.

Thanks for the fireplace on youtube, MsJS. Nice to see that the cognac is VSOP, too. Nice touch.

Posted by: ftb3 | January 26, 2011 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Buckets of rain and thunder booms in Annapolis. I hope the rain turns to snow. I need some drama around here.

Why do I have to register and sign in and then be rejected time after time when I've been commenting for years and years?

Posted by: rickoshea12 | January 26, 2011 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Not everybody is getting on board with Ignore Sarah Palin Month.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/thefix/eye-on-2012/on-sarah-palin.html

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 4:11 PM | Report abuse

5 minutes.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Far enough, Armybrat. I was thinking that the unknown commenters weren't spewing the normal crap we get when there's a Rovestorm. Yes, THAT was an interesting day on Achenblog.

Posted by: slyness | January 26, 2011 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for that link, DNA_Girl, fascinating stuff. They mentioned that there are no everyday examples of the van der Waals force, but I thought I read somewhere that that's how they think geckos stick to ceilings and walls. The skin of their feet scrunches into so many fractal folds, increasing the surface area , and the van der Waals force allows them to stick to surfaces.

Posted by: GomerGross | January 26, 2011 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Understand, slyness, and people spouting random incorrect stuff are generally more tolerable than people spouting intentionally insulting incorrect stuff - whatever the heck that means. :-)

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 26, 2011 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Looks like the 'Merkican color-coded threat system is on its way out:
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/sns-ap-us-color-coded-threats,0,3115181.story

What level are we at these days, anyway? Olive? Sage? Mocha?

Posted by: MsJS | January 26, 2011 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Thundersnow here in Suthen Merlin, rickofshea. Just got hom after the gummint early-out. Line was about 25-30 people for the first bus at 3, and most didn't get on. The second bus at 3:15 took the remainder. I went out for the 3:20 bus, stood in the rain for 10 minutes, and just now got home. It turned to snow here a while ago, and I got home just in the nick of whatever. It's turning right nasty out there, and there's gonna be a nice crunchy layer of frozen slush underneath a couple inches of snow. Methinks I will telecommute tomorrow. Meanwhile, a nice roaring fire and a memory stick full of work I brought home. (You citizens of the republic are such demanding taskmasters.)

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 26, 2011 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Clay acts clayey because of Van der Walles forces.
BTW, nothing about "socialism" necessitates non-democratic government.
The "black budget" might be considered part of defense. Granted, the best estimates I have looked at won't exceed $100 B/yr. And by definition, we regular people aren't qualified to judge what's needed and what's not.

"Hyperbole is such a squawky bird.
Everyone is so untrue.
Honesty is hardly ever heard.
And mostly what I need from you.

"I can always find someone
who will not sympathize.
If I wear my heart out on my sleeve.
But I don't want some pretty face
to tell me pretty lies.
All I want is someone to believe."

Posted by: Jumper1 | January 26, 2011 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Glad you made it home safe, Mudge, even if a bit wet.

All of you in the storm's path, stay safe.

Posted by: MsJS | January 26, 2011 5:25 PM | Report abuse

http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencenow/2011/01/carnivorous-plant-feasts-on-bat-.html?etoc

No, it's not eating bats, just providing a comfortable bed and toilet, and keeping the nutritious bat droppings. I'm not making this up.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 26, 2011 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Drat! That color-coded terror-alert system was great for our family's travel budget. Every time they'd raise the alert, we'd head up to NYC for a cheap vacation. We were getting great hotel rooms for as little as $70 a night right in midtown and the theatre district whenever the alert was raised.

It served two purposes: saving money and teaching our children about hyperbole.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 5:32 PM | Report abuse

Sending warm and safe wishes to all the DC area boodlers. Post pics of the snow!

Posted by: MiddleofthePacific | January 26, 2011 5:32 PM | Report abuse

We've got almost three inches of snow already on our deck.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Yes TBG, but did the lower rates in NYC also correlate with the increase in bed bug infestations?

Posted by: MiddleofthePacific | January 26, 2011 5:37 PM | Report abuse

TBG,

I know what you mean. October of 2001 was the only time I have been able to afford the Waldorf Astoria. Not terror related, but a lot of luxury hotels (all of which are still out of my price range) are offering Stay 2 Nights, 3rd Night Is Free offers in February. That is assuming you can get there and back.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Yes, that was a rather silly/lazy statement, especially since hydrogen bonds are dipole-dipole interactions and thus part of the van der Waals' family. And "everyday examples" of hydrogen bonding are everywhere.

leaves drink on tree tops
and fishes drink under ice
italian dressing

Posted by: DNA_Girl | January 26, 2011 6:09 PM | Report abuse

"leaves drink on tree tops
and fishes drink under ice
italian dressing"

This is one of your better poems, DNA girl!

Posted by: nellie4 | January 26, 2011 6:13 PM | Report abuse

For our trip to NYC this weekend, I went onto Quikbook.com again yesterday to see if I could find a rate cheaper than our Pod Hotel reservations. I did!

We are now staying at the Desmond Tutu Center instead. The room that would cost $329 a night in mid-June (I just checked) is costing me only $91 a night this weekend. (This hotel comes highly recommended by my sister, who pays closer to the full price there herself).

I love New York in the winter!

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Eight inches of the white stuff in the Shenandoah and still accumulating.

Posted by: talitha1 | January 26, 2011 6:33 PM | Report abuse

Since we're off-topic, early this morning

Me: No school today.
DC: Yay! I'll slice the brownies.
Me: Babydoll, you can't have brownies for breakfast. That one's *specifically* mentioned in the Mommy Handbook.
DC: Okay. I'll wait until you get in the shower.

There are just so many ways to look at this.

Posted by: LostInThought | January 26, 2011 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Thundersnow here in Suthen Merlin, rickofshea. Just got hom after the gummint early-out. Line was about 25-30 people for the first bus at 3, and most didn't get on. The second bus at 3:15 took the remainder. I went out for the 3:20 bus, stood in the rain for 10 minutes, and just now got home. It turned to snow here a while ago, and I got home just in the nick of whatever. It's turning right nasty out there, and there's gonna be a nice crunchy layer of frozen slush underneath a couple inches of snow. Methinks I will telecommute tomorrow. Meanwhile, a nice roaring fire and a memory stick full of work I brought home. (You citizens of the republic are such demanding taskmasters.)

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 26, 2011 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Uh oh. Lights have flickered a couple of times. This may not be a good sign.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Yikes. Movable type strikes again.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 26, 2011 6:45 PM | Report abuse

I checked the Tutu. Nice website.

My only visit to NYC as an adult was on a cold, snowless weekend. Got to watch the Gates unfurled in Central Park. Mahler's 7th. Met (the art one). MOMA. Enjoyed a vast hotel room with walk-in closet at the Fitzgerald, which was full of happy Irish tourists plundering Bloomingdales. That was back when Ireland was rich.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 26, 2011 7:07 PM | Report abuse

The snow started here about an hour ago. I think we may get half a foot. I am running out of places to shovel it to at the end of the drive.

Posted by: baldinho | January 26, 2011 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Re yello's link:

All aboard the ignorewagon!
Remember, don't feed the wildlife!
No lap trolls allowed! All aboard!

Punch your tickets!
Punch your tickets!

All aboard the ignorewagon!

de la la la dah dah

Hunt adorable science guys

de la la dah dah

Allll aboaaaard!

No lap trolls allowed

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 26, 2011 7:33 PM | Report abuse

After an inch or two this afternoon, we are in a lull. Fortunately, we haven't had as much snow as areas further north so have room left to throw the new accumulation which is forecast to be about ten inches.

I'm getting a kick out of the reactions to Princess Sparkle Pony's address last night. I do think that the Tea Party movement is doomed. It may take a while, but I can't see a long term future for them.

Posted by: badsneakers | January 26, 2011 7:42 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I can confirm this is the dreaded "wet, heavy" snow that's wrenched many a back.

Including mine, perhaps. *SIGH*

And yes, it's falling fast enough to obscure one's shoveling progress after only 5-10 minutes.

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 26, 2011 7:43 PM | Report abuse

'sneaks... that's what happened here. A dusting of snow/sleet this morning, then a lull until 3:30 or so. But when it started (as sleet) it came fast and was slush then snow in no time. Our deck table looks like it's got about 6 inches on it already.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 7:45 PM | Report abuse

DotC,

I remember The Gates. We saw them on a trip to NYC in February of 2005. I was on crutches having broken my ankle earlier that winter by slipping on the ice walking my dog.

The night before we had to leave, it had snowed and turned Central Park a beautiful combination of white and saffron.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/yellojkt/5391194749/

As for this snow, I followed my next door neighbor's lead and shoveled off all the sleet so the work will be a little lighter in the morning.

We had an enormous thundersnow clap this afternoon and the boss actually sent us home a half hour early because of the ice.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 7:55 PM | Report abuse

Dreaded heavy snow indeed. It is encasing everything like a spider does its prey. The result is indeed beautiful, but I fear for the electrical grid.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | January 26, 2011 8:00 PM | Report abuse

We are possibly planning to spend Easter in NYC, making a mental note to check the site TBG used.

No snow here, but it has warmed nicely and what little snow we had (4" or so) is nicely melting.

Posted by: dmd3 | January 26, 2011 8:02 PM | Report abuse

We are possibly planning to spend Easter in NYC, making a mental note to check the site TBG used.

No snow here, but it has warmed nicely and what little snow we had (4" or so) is nicely melting.

Posted by: dmd3 | January 26, 2011 8:03 PM | Report abuse

LiT, I hope you are writing all these things down. Geekdottir and I fell out laughing.

Did you hide the brownies before you took your shower?

Stay warm and safe, all my snowbound friends!

Posted by: slyness | January 26, 2011 8:20 PM | Report abuse

Apropos of kb's link yesterday to an article written by Joel (remember him? flyaway hair, used to write a blog) in 1989 about how unless the budget was balanced there would be Hades to pay.

The article was terrifying in its prescience and even more so when you consider that two decades later we are in the exact same place. Only now all the numbers which were mind-bogglingly frightening then have an extra digit in them now.

Here is the link again in case you missed it:

http://tinyurl.com/4qcy2md

And thanks again to kbertocci, the greatest non-stalker fan any writer could ever hope to have.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 8:46 PM | Report abuse

I know it's late, but I have the need to demonstrate my superior knowledge of the German language. Mudge (8.45am), internecine is pronounced "shah-den-froidah.

This has been enjoyable kit and kaboodle day, as always. Good night.

Posted by: gmbka | January 26, 2011 9:01 PM | Report abuse

My fellow Virginians can see realtime outage info from Dominion Power...

http://outagemap.dom.com/DomComFlexOutageViewer/index.html

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Good evening, all.

Glad to know my thoughts about the SotU and Representative Sparkle Pony were shared by others... Can the GOP and the TP wipe away their differences and pinch the Senate and WH in 2012, completing a conservative flush?

A crazy day for me driving Ye Olde German Sedan around the DC area for several meetings in the District and a couple of sites in VA before heading back home about 30 miles NW of DC as the crow flies.

Managed to get home just as the freezing rain hit (on top of the couple of inches of heavy slush remaining from the morning).

Just measured 9 inches of snow on my deck - and I've noticed those electrical power fluctuations this evening, too. Snow's still coming down.

One of the neighbor kids is riding his dirt bike (OK, a motorcycle) around the 'hood in the snow -- I am very tempted to ask if I can ride it for a bit. When I was a teenager I used to love riding dirt bikes in the snow with my brothers, and joyriding around the traffic-free neigborhood streets in our old cars, too, pausing only to engage in some bumper-riding (Chucks do slide pretty well on snowpacked streets) and impromptu vehicular hillclimb competitons at the local Junior High school.

Was always up for a nighttime snowball fight when the opportunity presented itself (such as when one of my brothers turned his back to me), or moonlight sledding and tackle football games.

Followed by chocolate - hot and cold (LiT, DC's jones for chocolate is snow-day normal to me.)

Now I'm more apt to help shovel neighbors' sidewalks and driveways and help liberate the occasional stuck vehicle (did a little of that this evening).

Followed by mulled wine.

Geez, what happened to me?

bc

Posted by: -bc- | January 26, 2011 9:05 PM | Report abuse

RoS, where do you live in Annapolis? I went to St. John's College there. Stop by Galway Bay and Harry Browne's for me, would ya? Also, I owe the SJC bookstore a visit *sigh*. This small world syndrome is getting weird considering where I'm currently abiding . . .

Snowing again here. I took off early from work and am now playing a little catch up. Or perhaps just playing around. I haven't really decided. I'm thinking of retiring with a book.

Everyone stay warm out there.

Posted by: cowhand214 | January 26, 2011 9:05 PM | Report abuse

I got this (I think) hilarious email from my daughter's school today, through the automated "Keep in Touch" system...

"The IB Information Night for High School students and parents has been rescheduled for Wednesday, February 16 at :7:30 p.m.

"It was originally tonight and some people don't see the connection between no school during the day and no events at night."


I wonder if those people should even be considering the IB program for their kids.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 9:07 PM | Report abuse

TBG,

Was the IB Info Night being held at Midvale?

http://vividlife.me/ultimate/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/school-fo-gifted.jpg

Still one of my favorite Far Sides. I have a tee shirt with that comic on it but my wife never let me wear it to back to school night.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 9:14 PM | Report abuse

The power went out here twice about 2 hours ago -- off and on, off and on -- making me go around fixing the blinking clocks again. Since then, though, it's been fine.

I hope by now evening rush hour has meant that most people are home and warm and dry and getting relaxed. So glad I don't commute. Honestly.

TBG, what does IB mean? I can only think of "ibble-bibble" and I have a sense that isn't it.

Posted by: ftb3 | January 26, 2011 9:15 PM | Report abuse

One more bit of boodle hogging if you don't mind: Will Ferrell will step in for Steve Carell on The Office (well... kind of).

http://insidetv.ew.com/2011/01/26/will-ferrell-the-office/

“We found Steve Carell when he was nothing but a movie star and we turned him into a television star,” says executive producer Paul Lieberstein. “We are proud to continue The Office‘s tradition of discovering famous talent, and we hope that once America gets a good look at Will, they’ll see what we see: tremendous raw sexuality.”

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 9:16 PM | Report abuse

Gates in snow. Perfect. Chisto and Jeanne-Claude had given a presentation at the local art museum, so the project was familiar.

By the way, I haven't been to the haystack hills above Arecibo since I was a kid. Need to revisit.

This film about surfing photographer Mickey Kennedy by Allan Wilson, set among western Irish cliffs, came back to attention today. Good for contemplating cold, albeit without snow. The sponsor is an energy drink outfit owned by Coca-Cola. So it's highbrow advertising. Also somewhat in keeping with a much-publicized surfing accident in California the other day at a spot that doesn't allow carelessness. To the best of my knowledge, serious accidents have happened at Mavericks only during competitions.

Anyway, here's the gorgeous Irish film available in 720p

http://www.relentlessenergy.com/films/view/dark-side-of-the-lens

I'd like to put this Mickey Smith in the same room as Aron Ralston, he of the movie '127 Hours' and a shortened right arm.
__________________________

I need to provide a dandelion photo. Florida tomatoes are in the supermarkets. Some mango trees are flowering, the neighbor lady's lawn is emerald where, a month ago, it was frozen brown.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 26, 2011 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, ftb... International Baccalaureate. See http://www.ibo.org/

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 9:21 PM | Report abuse

That was my second choice, TBG.

Really.

*hee hee hee*

Posted by: ftb3 | January 26, 2011 9:24 PM | Report abuse

Having owned a DC of my own way back there in the past, I would bet that LiT didn't just hide those brownies, she took them into the shower with her!

Posted by: nellie4 | January 26, 2011 9:29 PM | Report abuse

I must be a terrible mom. I would have told her to make sure to save some brownies for me.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 26, 2011 9:37 PM | Report abuse

DotC,
That was an amazing movie. Making me very eager for my summer vacation and I don't even surf.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Up until last Monday the brownies were safer with my kids than they were with me, now I am just dreaming of brownies, and a snow day.

Posted by: dmd3 | January 26, 2011 9:44 PM | Report abuse

Well DC's honesty was disarming, so I might have suggested a brownie *after* breakfast. All of this would have happened after I stopped laughing and had taken a moment to write it down.

I would love to meet that child :-)

Posted by: badsneakers | January 26, 2011 9:45 PM | Report abuse

And locked the bathroom door, too! Yep, been there myself.

Geekdottir went to the local pre-IB magnet in middle school and refused to consider the program in high school. She said it was make-work and a waste of time. I couldn't argue with her, so I didn't.

Then she decided she would apply to the North Carolina School of Science and Math and got in. I tell her those two years ruined her for life, because she'll never again be in a group consisting of her peers and only her peers. She loved it and did well.

While she was there, the administration decided they had to calculate GPA's for the students, but they didn't do a class ranking. Imagine trying to rank the 260 top students in the state.

Posted by: slyness | January 26, 2011 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Cowhand, I think you and I are changing lives (although not generations: I'm just a week younger than Mudge).

Yes, I do live in Naptown, between the ClockTower and Truxton Park,if that means anything to you.

I have attended a seminar or two at St. John's with Anita Kronenberg(SP?), and loved every minute of them. St. John's is the real deal.

Right now, I'm sitting in front of the fire, enjoying a glass of wine and reading The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver, after a lovely dinner cooked by a cousin of mine who loves to cook and does it so very well.

The snow is barreling down, but the lights haven't flickered, and I'm utterly content.

Posted by: rickoshea12 | January 26, 2011 9:57 PM | Report abuse

Thank you for the schwa on the end of schadenfreude, gmbka. I tend to drop them on the end of my Deutsche nouns. Mozart used to mock my accent all der time. "Du bist ein lousy Deutsche schprecker, Mudgchen," he used to say.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 26, 2011 10:06 PM | Report abuse

yello, those Irish cliffs were of course famous long before surfing came along. I have no idea how those surfers (and their videographers and photographers) get to those waves, much less ride them. Mickey Kennedy's rather mumbled litany of injuries says a lot about the risks.

Thanks to a bargain price, I picked up "A Line in the Water", smudgy, minimalist etchings by Norman Ackroyd with poetry by Douglas Dunn.

Thinking of Geekdottir, I learned at some point that, although I was never the smartest person in the room, it paid to look for such persons or the books/journal articles they write. More good stuff, less muddle, less misinformation.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 26, 2011 10:08 PM | Report abuse

For anybody who is interested in the Tropic magazine issue that Weingarten referenced in his chat this week, here it is in PDF files--sorry the files are so big--I didn't have control over the file size going from microfilm to PDF. Also, the pages are numbered but not in order in the list. Go by the numbers, not by the order. Does that make sense? Oh, well, it's late. G'night.

http://www.mediafire.com/?sy2v0vy5d5gn5

Posted by: kbertocci | January 26, 2011 10:16 PM | Report abuse

kb,

That Orlando article is every bit as funny as I remember. And page 4 has a truly fantastic picture of Weingarten.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 26, 2011 10:23 PM | Report abuse

The Post's editorial condemning President Obama for not mentioning gun control seems clueless. Unless I'm badly mistaken, no legislation would be considered by the House. Any statement by Mr. Obama in favor of even the most sensible measures would set off an NRA fundraising campaign, not to mention unending Facebook stuff about "Obama's Taking Your Guns Away". Remember the firearms sales boom when he was elected? He'd be better off setting up a training center for United Nations helicopter pilots in northern Idaho.

Florida novel: Swamplandia! by Karen Russell. She'll be in town a month from now. What with the state having been developed super-fast, it's strange to think that people cohabited with mastodons and giant beavers within walking distance of my house.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 26, 2011 10:34 PM | Report abuse

RoS, I do indeed know Clock Tower. I had an apartment off Chesapeake Ave (on Americana Dr.) in Eastport for a summer. I can't remember the name of the development at the moment but most assuredly you've driven by. Used to show up at the shopping center up your way from time to time. I'm not sure but I think I also went to a few gatherings at a retired Naval officer's house in your neighborhood too. I had a couple friends who were Midshipman and he was one of their sponsors. Man was crazy but a lot of fun and used to let us kids come over and watch football and drink Bloody Mary's on weekends.

I know the name Ms. Kronenberg but I never had her as a tutor though I'm sure friends of mine did.

Posted by: cowhand214 | January 26, 2011 10:42 PM | Report abuse

Cowhand, my next-door neighbor is a retired Navy Submariner, but I can't imagine that he's the man you mentioned. He used to coach lacrosse, and he's too straight an arrow to allow mids to imbibe. I, on the other hand, ...

I don't know when you left the area, but now Eastport is the place to be. The People's Republic of Eastport may have turned the place around (i.e. gentrified).

Posted by: rickoshea12 | January 26, 2011 10:52 PM | Report abuse

While you Wish Upon a Star,
We'll Be Burning Up Your Car
(Weingarten)

It brings to mind that the basketball palace in Overtown, Miami (not a nice neighborhood) has been, or will be demolished. Obsolete, just like the former home of the Heat. The new one seats as many people as football stadiums once did.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 26, 2011 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Sneaks I did laugh. And she's brutally honest (once told me that sometimes my hair looks like, um, a witch).

I thought it was sweet she didn't want me to get in trouble with the Mommy Society and smart that she identified a way around the problem, so while she pushed her breakfast around the plate (ate some bacon) I got out a plastic knife and took the lid off the brownies, got a cup of coffee and went upstairs for half an hour. A fair amount of her breakfast was eaten, but I'm a pushover and she knows it.

Sounds like a bunch of us will be moving snow around tomorrow. Throw some snowballs while you're at it. Have a happy night all.

Posted by: LostInThought | January 26, 2011 11:06 PM | Report abuse

You are a wise mommy, LiT. I hope I have snow to throw around in the am. So far, we have wind and a bit of rain, I'd much prefer snow (I have never truly grown up, thank goodness!)

Posted by: badsneakers | January 26, 2011 11:26 PM | Report abuse

Wanted to point out that Obama mentioned gummint reorgs last night - great time to be the lowest on the Fed totem pole, eh?
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/26/obama-salmon-regulation-fishy-history_n_814263.html
I was surprised the other day to see that NOAA is part of the Commerce Dept. I liked the salmon joke, even if it was kind of corny. Apparently it got people's attention, if nothing else (my morning bus buddy mentioned it), and there's this from NPR:
http://www.npr.org/2011/01/26/133211131/the-state-of-the-union-in-your-words

In tennis news, Rafa is out of the Australian Open with an injured hamstring. Li Na of China just beat the Dane Caroline Wozniacki to get into the women's final.

Posted by: seasea1 | January 27, 2011 12:33 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and Justine Henin is retiring again - this time because of an elbow injury. I enjoyed watching her play.

Posted by: seasea1 | January 27, 2011 12:37 AM | Report abuse

Power off for an hour or so. Back on. Looked out back to see what that "Crash" was... 30 feet of tree and assisting snow and ice crunched into the deck and grill. The tree took out a railing.

I suppose we will have to have a chain saw experience in the next day or so.

There really isn't that much snow, but it is very heavy. So, I guess, technically, there is a lot of it, but it is dense.

Sad to read about Charlie Louvin.

Posted by: russianthistle | January 27, 2011 4:43 AM | Report abuse

seasea got me looking at the tennis article and the photos. Here is a description listed with one of the photos:

"Spain's David Ferrer celebrates after beating compatriot David Ferrer during their quarterfinal match at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. (AP Photo/Shuji Kajiyama) (Shuji Kajiyama - AP)"

I guess this is just like buying multiple lottery tickets. You just increase your chances of winning. Of course, in sports, that can introduce certain difficulties.

Posted by: russianthistle | January 27, 2011 4:54 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 don't think we have snow outside, although, I haven't checked yet. The weather person is calling for lots of sunshine, but cold temps. Be careful those of you with snow, and don't forget to check on the elderly.

I'm thinking seriously of going back to bed. I told my daughter last night, I'm having withdrawls symptoms from not seeing the baby. I've got it bad, and don't know how I got to this point.

Slyness, hope you get a chance to do the walk, but the weather person is talking about the possibility of ice. I miss the morning walks to the lake. Sometimes I drive to the lake and just sit in the car and watch the ducks. People started throwing food out their cars to the ducks, and at one point, every time a car pulled up, the ducks would surround the car. Scary.

Have a restful day, for those of you staying in because of the weather, and love to all.

Posted by: cmyth4u | January 27, 2011 6:10 AM | Report abuse

Looks like our power outage (at least a half-hour's worth for the last one, based on digital clock resetting) was due to 10 inches out here in Dawn Patrol land, although the snow's self-compacting and tough to measure. Not so tough to make the decision to telecommute when the Dawn Patrol's not running, though. :-)

Saw this WaPo home page headline:

"44: Dennis Kucinich sues House cafeteria"

And I couldn't help myself, I thought: "Not enough booster seats?"

Turns out the suit's over an olive pit.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/44/2011/01/dennis-kucinich-sues-house-caf.html

From these rabbis' mouths to God's ear, eh 'Mudge?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/26/AR2011012607540.html

*preparing-for-at-least-a-couple-rounds-of-shoveling Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 27, 2011 6:42 AM | Report abuse

It seems we got a glancing blow of the latest storm here. I am one shoveling wave done, and we received about 5 inches? Light powdery stuff. I'll have to keep my eye on the end of the drive, as the locals will undoubtedly plow us in a couple times this morning.

We have scheduled to have a company come in and set up new propane tanks on the side of our house this morning. They will have to get through the 3' of snow to reach them. Good luck.

Posted by: baldinho | January 27, 2011 6:50 AM | Report abuse

bc, glad you made it home without the sort of downtown debacle described in the WaPo article:

"One of the worst traffic jams was on 16th Street NW, where drivers were in bumper-to-bumper gridlock from the White House to the Maryland state line. It took one Washington Post editor 5 hours 20 minutes to make a six-mile trip home along that route."

:-O

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 27, 2011 6:55 AM | Report abuse

seasea1,
I think the Forest Service is in the Agriculture Department because Theodore Roosevelt wanted forester Gifford Pinchot to be Agriculture secretary. Or something like that.

NOAA's in Commerce because of a Nixon snit, or something equally trivial. So fresh fish belong to Interior, salt ones to Commerce.

Carter tried to unify them with Interior's land management agencies (Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service's National Wildlife Refuges, Bureau of Land Management). Nothing happened.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 27, 2011 7:32 AM | Report abuse

This "essay" is somewhat self-serving, but it's a fascinating account of dealing with a (not-so) nascent megalomaniac such as Assange:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/30/magazine/30Wikileaks-t.html?_r=1&hp=&pagewanted=all

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 27, 2011 7:35 AM | Report abuse

DotC, if they unified everything, it would be in the Department of Homeland Fish

Posted by: russianthistle | January 27, 2011 8:28 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle. Wow, Scotty, looks like you guys north and west got hammered. We only got about 3 inches here in SoMD. I just finished shoveling the bottom of the back driveway so my wife could go to work (only a mile away). Me, I'm telecommuting, per OPM instructions. So I got my 'puter, my Keurig, my toasty fireplace, so I'm a happy camper.

One of my work mates, who drives a mini Cooper e-mailed us last night to say it took him four hours to get home--he was one of the ones caught in that gridlock. And he got stuck three times and had to have people on the street help get him free and going again. I made it home just in the nick of time.

OK then! Wife's at work. Time to draw up my schedule.

8:30-9 a.m.: Coffee, breakfast.
9-10 a.m. Post-breakfast nap
10-11 a.m.: Check e-mail, Boodle, Facebook.
11-noon: Contemplate lunch, do some work, watch TIVO'd show.
Noon: 1 p.m. Lunch. Am reading the new Michael Connelly, "The Reversal," which so far (half way) is very good.
1:1:15 p.m. Wish for arrival of UPS man with Amazon delivery of "The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest."
1:15-3:30: Watch movie. Fallback: Work, Boodle, etc.
3:30-5: Nap.
5 p.m.: Sign off work.
5:05-5:30 p.m. Hendricks gin-and-tonic.
5:30-6 p.m. Dinner.
6:10 p.m.: TV, write.
10-11 p.m.: Watch "Fairly Legal."
11 p.m.--? Check e-mail, Boodle, Facebook, etc. Perhaps more writing. Then bed.

I'm not normally a schedule kinda person, but sometimes it's nice to know what's on deck for the day. Of course, somewhere in my busy day I've got to do some menu planning.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 27, 2011 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, Mozart of all people had no reason to criticise other people's accent: his heavily Austrian coloured speech caused Nannerl and me to giggle whenever he tried to hide his origin and speak German. I still remember how good it felt to laugh at a genius once in a while.

Posted by: gmbka | January 27, 2011 8:41 AM | Report abuse

Morning all, hi Cassandra! I hope all our DC area boodlers are safe and warm, hopefully at home. May the snow melt quickly!

Cassandra, I do hope you went back to bed. That's a good place to be. No walk yet, but Mr. T's cold seems to be receding so maybe we can get out tomorrow. We'll be in the mountains, though, and they had plenty of snow as well. I'll take a walk later this morning. Maybe Geekdottir will go with me.

Mudge, don't overwork yourself today. That's an impressive schedule you've got there.

Posted by: slyness | January 27, 2011 8:43 AM | Report abuse

I think Forest Service, National Parks, and Fish and Wildlife might thrive in Commerce, which seems a more popular (and maybe better-funded) brand than Interior. BLM is always going to be unpopular, so it's worth retaining Interior as a repository for unpopular agencies.

The snow situation in the Northeast looks absolutely crazy. I wonder whether NYC will have Tunisia-style crowds demanding the ouster of Mayor Bloomberg.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 27, 2011 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Boodle rules frown severely on SCCing someone else's post, but I think I need to amend weed's. It's Department of Homeland Fish Traffic Safety.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 27, 2011 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Good morning everyone hope everyone is safe after the storm, and is warm and cozy.

I did a particularly stupid thing this morning (and that is say a lot for me), backed the car out of the garage and noted ice on the driveway when I went to step out of the car. A reasonable person would probably have been more cautious, but for some reason I decided to test how slippery that black ice was, it was super slider slippery. Embarrassing fall, bending my knee in a manner I don't think it is supposed to go and banging my wrist and *ss. Fortunately all that was hurt was my dignity.

As a public service reminder, salt your driveway walkway especially if you are in an area like ours with constant melting and freezing. No salt, kitty litter works, sand. I shall be restocking at lunch.

Posted by: dmd3 | January 27, 2011 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Thought for the day: Why do they call it the deopartment of Interior? Everything they do is outside. Shouldn't it be Exterior? Fish? Wildlife? Forests?

Why do forests get rangers, but deserts don't why aren't there desert rangers? Or Suburb Rangers? C'mon, jeez. There's coyotes running loose in suburbs and cities, people. Bears prowling around the edges of major suburbs. I got deer all over the place here in Waldorf, eating people's gardens and getting hit by cars, but can't find a forest ranger anywhere.

We suburbans got it rough. Nobody writes or sings songs about us. You can't spin a cit without running into some durn country-and-western ballad about how freaking great it is to be a country boy redneck pekkarwood with country values (like voting for the Tea Party, tipping harmless cows and driving yer pick-em-up into a ditch on Saturday night) and how manly, honest and superior that lifestyle is compared to effete, elitist, Harvard-educated oncologists. So where is the heartfelt plaint to us bedroom community telecommuters like me and Scotty and Padouk and bc and SciTim? (Used to be TBG, too, until she went all country-club on us.)

It ain't fair, I tell ya.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 27, 2011 8:59 AM | Report abuse

But there is a song Mudge,

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XAitZuh4ueg

Posted by: dmd3 | January 27, 2011 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Hi everybody. Wow is it pretty outside. Everything is coated in a thick frosting of snow. The shrubs and trees are bowing down to the great snow goddess and little flakes are still floating in the air. The wind howled all night and we lost power momentarily at least once. I can't tell how much snow we got, maybe 6 to 8? Because I have no place to go today, I am taking my time getting ready to blow the snow. I think it will be a good day for photos.

I skimmed that article about Assange, Scotty. Not having followed the whole story very closely, I don't have a strong opinion but I didn't feel any surprise regarding the author's take on Assange's personality.

Posted by: badsneakers | January 27, 2011 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Someone has to supervise travelling salmon, which have to put up with bears, dams, overly warm water, all sorts of indignities.

If memory serves me, the original Department of State got tired of handling relations with Indians and sale of public lands, so Interior was set up to take care of everything within US boundaries. And maybe guano islands? The early US seems to have had a policy of seizing guano islands.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 27, 2011 9:15 AM | Report abuse

We got 18 inches. Happiness. Especially since university's closed. 3 hours of shoveling and I was only half way done, but then the neighbor came by with his snowblower. More happiness. And to think I was at 89 oF in Bombay just a few days ago. But I lovelovelove the snow. Off for a walk in the sunshine later. After tea and ibuprofen.

Posted by: DNA_Girl | January 27, 2011 9:31 AM | Report abuse

We got about 18mm in the past 3 days. !&*%XXX#!

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | January 27, 2011 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Power's out at the office! If it's not on by noon, the place is closed for the day.

Everyone please focus your good-luck finger-crossing on our boodlers without power and keep my place of employment out of it.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 27, 2011 9:53 AM | Report abuse


Greetings from the land of mid 60's for highs.

When do I start worrying about drought?

Posted by: edbyronadams | January 27, 2011 10:05 AM | Report abuse

I think we got about 10 inches here. Not too bad and they just finished plowing our lot. The question is where it's strictly necessary to go into the office or just pick up on Mudge's schedule after my conference call.

Posted by: cowhand214 | January 27, 2011 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Driveway is cleared. We also got about 10" but a lot of drifting. Already blue sky above. Using the snow blower is my new fun thing to do, except when it clogs up with slushy stuff that collects at the end of the driveway. The trowel I've been using to clear the clogs fell out of my pocket and I apparently ran over it. The handle is a bit bent, but it's still usable!

Posted by: badsneakers | January 27, 2011 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Good day, y'all.

I posted the usual breakfast to the boodle a while back, but apparently it didn't take.

As residents of TWC await the Ill-In-Oy Supremes ruling on Rahm's residency, the local paper has published an interesting article about how enmeshed into the political system the 7 of them are.
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/elections/ct-met-illinois-supreme-court-20110126,0,1272948.story

In particular, one of them is married to a Chicago alderman who is backing a different candidate and one pretty much owes his seat on the court to the Ill-In-Oy House Speaker, who is from TWC and reportedly dislikes Rahm.

Posted by: MsJS | January 27, 2011 11:14 AM | Report abuse

We didn't have a great deal of snow at my house (less than six inches) but it froze up nicely overnight. Alas, we lost power around 11:00 last night, and it was still out when I left the house this morning. Our office is closed today, but sitting around in a dark, silent house all day didn't appeal to me, so I came in anyway.

Posted by: bobsewell | January 27, 2011 11:15 AM | Report abuse

The snow tree.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/yellojkt/5392764421/

Posted by: yellojkt | January 27, 2011 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Beautiful shot, yello.

BobS, you can hunker down here. Power's on, computer's available, lots of goodies in the fridge.

Posted by: MsJS | January 27, 2011 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Might as well have the office pay for the dark and silence, eh Bob? :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 27, 2011 11:34 AM | Report abuse

A college kid from the townhouses around the corner just came by to negotiate on shoveling the driveway. He doesn't know that we found an old birthday card with $50 cash in it last night.

I'm sure he wondered why I said, "Sounds great!" to his offer to do it and the walk for $40 (a steal, really). He also has no idea he's probably going to get the entire $50.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 27, 2011 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Hey! Top o' the Bay (NE MD) got about 6 inches, with 1.5 of that being slush. Remind me again why I bought a corner lot? That's a lot of sidewalk.

This is culled from hours of hubby's research discussions, so while it comes from a good source, it is filtered through my less-knowledgeable memories and I'm summarizing and glossing a bit. Pinchot was a scientific forester, meaning he saw forests and trees as crops that needed to be managed. This is in contrast to Muir, who was more of a traditional conservationist/preservationist that wanted to preserve areas for recreation and intrinsic value. NPS is more Muir, US Forest Service is more Pinchot. Hence, USFS was put under agriculture.

BTW, DotC, thanks for the bat article. That sort of symbiotic relationship is so cool.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | January 27, 2011 12:14 PM | Report abuse

I've been informed by reliable sources that today is National Chocolate Cake Day.

Please celebrate responsibly.

:-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 27, 2011 12:18 PM | Report abuse

I read the "Snow gridlock trap commuters for 13 hours" article and I laughed. Does it mean I'm a bad person?

I needed more laugh, so I read Michael Gerson who is besides himself that, after TWO years in power, Obama is still a Democrat. LOL.

OK. Got to find those French articles, from early January, about commuters trapped until the early morning hours on the Périphérique, waiting for the snow to melt. That was really funny.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | January 27, 2011 12:26 PM | Report abuse

I shoveled the drive. Dug my car out of the street, went to work, and found the office closed from loss of power. I had missed the voicemail message they had left me. That means I can't even telecommute since even though I have the laptop at home the servers are down.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 27, 2011 12:54 PM | Report abuse

I hope that you left a cone in your spot, Jkt.

Posted by: russianthistle | January 27, 2011 1:05 PM | Report abuse

This might make you laugh Shriek,.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/video/smugglers-caught-catapulting-marijuana/article1884680/?cmpid=rss1&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TheGlobeAndMail-Front+%28The+Globe+and+Mail+-+Latest+News%29&utm_content=Google+International

Posted by: dmd3 | January 27, 2011 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Just when I thought my addiction was waning. Oregon Trail and Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? are coming to facebook.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/comic-riffs/2011/01/game_animation_oregon_trail_ca.html

http://icanhascheezburger.com/2007/07/28/kitteh-has-broken-an-axle/

http://www.slatev.com/video/the-nfl-hits-the-oregon-trail/

Posted by: MoftheMountain | January 27, 2011 1:12 PM | Report abuse

weed,
Our neighborhood has generally respected spots. On days where snow is expected I park in 'my' space in the lot instead of the driveway to make it easy to shovel. After the driveway is clear I shovel out the car and move it back to the driveway.

Today we only got one pass of the plow, so I had to dig from the driveway to the clear path as well as from the car as well. Way too much digging.

And more snowday pictures:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/yellojkt/sets/72157625793339681/

Posted by: yellojkt | January 27, 2011 1:26 PM | Report abuse

shrieking... now THIS should make you laugh...

http://www.27bslash6.com/f4s.html (small, but visible-by-boss-over-your-shoulder NSFW language enclosed)

Posted by: -TBG- | January 27, 2011 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Great snowman in yello's pix ... but he deserves a more dignified hat!

We ended up with about 10" of all heavy wet snow. I managed to clear the car and to get out before dark yesterday for a quick errand but the build-up in my wheelwells and on the brakes made it very perilous. After years in the Rockies I'm more than competent driving on snow, but this stuff was the opposite of powder.

Gorgeous morning! I live on a private dirt road and the guy we neighbors hire to plow just came through destroying my clear passage out of the drive. *sigh*

Glad to read that Boodlers are safe and sound for the most part and I sure hope power is restored soon to those without it. Nothing is worse!

Posted by: talitha1 | January 27, 2011 1:46 PM | Report abuse

I kinda like the snowman's green fez, talitha. Do you think a red Solo® cup would be more dignified?

Posted by: -TBG- | January 27, 2011 1:59 PM | Report abuse

The Department of Homeland Fish has raised its Tartar Sauce Alert level to code Orange Roughy from code Yellowtail Snapper

Posted by: russianthistle | January 27, 2011 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Only if the red Solocup has white fuzzy ball-fringe hotglued on for added interest, TBG! lol.

By the way, your snowboard shop link was a hoot ... and the E. Market Street commercial corridor in Harrisonburg VA is well known to me. I may have to drop by sometime to meet Shorty, Fuzzy, Tattooey and Fattie.

Posted by: talitha1 | January 27, 2011 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Only if the red Solocup has white fuzzy ball-fringe hotglued on for added interest, TBG! lol.

By the way, your snowboard shop link was a hoot ... and the E. Market Street commercial corridor in Harrisonburg VA is well known to me. I may have to drop by sometime to meet Shorty, Fuzzy, Tattooey and Fattie.

Posted by: talitha1 | January 27, 2011 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Only if the red Solocup has white fuzzy ball-fringe hotglued on for added interest, TBG! lol.

By the way, your snowboard shop link was a hoot ... and the E. Market Street commercial corridor in Harrisonburg VA is well known to me. I may have to drop by sometime to meet Shorty, Fuzzy, Tattooey and Fattie.

Posted by: talitha1 | January 27, 2011 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Power went out at my house 9:30 last night, came back on at 5:00 a.m., then went back out at 9:00 a.m. I was planning to telework, but with the power out...

At 11:00 I decided that, rather than sitting around freezing and waiting for the power company, I would go in to work. Mmmm...hot tea and internet access. What's not to love?

Posted by: Raysmom | January 27, 2011 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Huh? I received a "Cannot deliver. Go back - Reload" message when I posted that. I blame Virginia Dominion Power.

Posted by: talitha1 | January 27, 2011 2:17 PM | Report abuse

If you do happen to speak to Ol' Anton, talitha, you might advise him to check out the return policies of L.L. Bean, REI, Nordstrom, etc. While these enterprises are not on the same scale as Function 4 Sports in Harrisonburg, they have historically enjoyed a good deal of success.

"Our products are guaranteed to give 100% satisfaction in every way. Return anything purchased from us at any time is it proves otherwise. We do not want you to have anything from L.L. Bean that is not completely satisfactory."

Bean's annual sales were $1,780,000,000 in 2006.

Posted by: kguy1 | January 27, 2011 2:21 PM | Report abuse

No school tomorrow. But Daughter says that "kind of sucks" because it was the last day of the quarter/semester and she had some work to turn in.

Could it be that maturity is arriving at the G house?

Posted by: -TBG- | January 27, 2011 2:26 PM | Report abuse

If you do happen to speak to Ol' Anton, talitha, you might advise him to check out the return policies of L.L. Bean, REI, Nordstrom, etc. While these enterprises are not on the same scale as Function 4 Sports in Harrisonburg, they have historically enjoyed a good deal of success.

"Our products are guaranteed to give 100% satisfaction in every way. Return anything purchased from us at any time is it proves otherwise. We do not want you to have anything from L.L. Bean that is not completely satisfactory."

Bean's annual sales were $1,780,000,000 in 2006.

Posted by: kguy1 | January 27, 2011 2:28 PM | Report abuse

This 27b/6 Aussie guy has a funny schtick TBG. I'll keep it near the The Oatmeal link for comic relief on dark days. This work week has been a PITA 'til now. Only good thing about this week is that it's coming to an end soon.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | January 27, 2011 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Glad to see some things are nearly universal. When I was in grad school in what they referred to as "mid-North Indiana", a snowstorm would result in a mass stampede towards the dining hall, from whence usable sleds in the form of trays could be obtained.

Middle daughter informs me that the dining halls at EnorMouse State University have removed all of the trays, after a mini-run at breakfast Wednesday. Reduces the size of your meal, since you have to figure out how to balance everything you take. :-)

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | January 27, 2011 2:37 PM | Report abuse

I'll bet our army can't do THIS-

http://www.spiegel.de/international/0,1518,741835,00.html

Posted by: kguy1 | January 27, 2011 2:58 PM | Report abuse

kguy, your point about LLBean and others' return policies is well-taken. My primary source for beads and other jewelry-making supplies (Fire Mountain Gems) has a return- for-refund, anytime*, no-questions-asked policy. They're one of the largest and most successful in their field.

*I once discovered, months after receiving it, that a carved ivory amulet I got from them wasn't satisfactory to my client's initial desires. I couldn't believe their genuine goodwill and cheerful customer service and they've gotten all my business since then.

Posted by: talitha1 | January 27, 2011 3:05 PM | Report abuse

Kguy--

What, faint on a motorcycle without falling off? I rather hope they wouldn't need to learn that skill-- nor archery, as that would indicate they're out of bullets.

I'm pretty sure our army personnel could master the actual motorcycle driving as shown, though.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 27, 2011 3:20 PM | Report abuse

talitha, I love FMG and order most of my supplies from them as well. They are a bit pricey on precious metal wire, so I get that elsewhere, but they are hands-down the first place I look for beads and findings.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | January 27, 2011 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Talitha and MoM, I too love FMG!

Their customer service is top notch! I also like Accents Beads in Rockville for semi-precious stone beads. I always find soemthing there I didn't know I needed.

I'm working from home, but there's not much work to be found. Sigh.

Posted by: Moose13 | January 27, 2011 3:28 PM | Report abuse

What a day. And, I'm losing my mind. (Others might know this already.)

My truck wouldn't budge. Last summer, my right front brake locked up on the road. I limped to a place nearby (heating up that brake dangerously) and the guy took pity on me and fixed it for the same price as the "inspection." So yesterday I became convinced the left brake had now done the same. The truck would barely move; dragging.

So I went out today, backed it out onto the driveway, and noticed a completely flat rear tire. I fired up the compressor. I repaired my jack which had quit working. I found a nail in the tire.

Okay. I spent the next 3 hours trying to ram the plug tool into the hole. I bent the plug tool 90°. I used a carpenter's clamp to try to force it in. I drilled the hole with a small drill bit. I used my karate yell. I beat the plug rig with a hammer. I violated the hole with my chainsaw round file. I cut the rubber plug in half lengthwise. I called my mechanic, my nephew, and my youngest strongest friend. No luck. I finally succeeded.

Not only did I convince myself of a completely wrong scenario when the obvious problem was plainly visible, all this time I never thought of using the spare.

I'm going to the store now for liquid refreshment.

Posted by: Jumper1 | January 27, 2011 3:35 PM | Report abuse

I had a customer service related email today, my husband decided to call a travel agent today to get information for our trip to NYC, this is the email I received,

"Ah ha moment. I phoned a travel agent. She told me to drive and to stop asking her questions"

I just got off the phone with him and he said "she basically hung up on me, asked "Sir do you know what you want to do?"

I am still laughing, I did mention I was surprised he didn't conference me into the call - as that has happened many times in the past.

Posted by: dmd3 | January 27, 2011 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Wow I killed it good.

Posted by: dmd3 | January 27, 2011 5:24 PM | Report abuse

No more than I did with my ignorewagon song.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 27, 2011 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Just returned from a supply run. Can report that the Shenandoah Valley is breathtaking with the setting sun on the vast fields of pristine snow, the mountains glowing. Though there's been very little melting the roads are plowed and dry. Not only was the gummit on top of their end of things but the farmers with their snowplows had all the farmroads plowed down to the pavement or gravel/dirt, too.

Posted by: talitha1 | January 27, 2011 5:46 PM | Report abuse

Maybe everybody went with Jumper for liquid refreshment

Posted by: Moose13 | January 27, 2011 5:47 PM | Report abuse

I made a small grocery store run today including the mini-cans of Coke for my Puerto Rican rum. There is a bottle of Don Q Limon calling my name.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 27, 2011 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Andy Borowitz has just invented an anti-social network where you un-friend people called TwoFaceBook.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Andy-Borowitz/38423635680

Posted by: yellojkt | January 27, 2011 5:58 PM | Report abuse

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/thefix/white-house/rahm-emanuel-ruled-eligible-fo.html?hpid=topnews

Looks like Rahm's on the ballot.

Posted by: MsJS | January 27, 2011 6:20 PM | Report abuse

I'm not surprised by the Illinois Supreme Court ruling, and not because I think they may have been influenced by connections to Chicago politicians. The lower appellate court used a very restrictive definition of "residence". I suspect it is not unusual to define "residence" as having a place to live, voting registration, driver's license, church attendance - intention to permanently live, even if you don't live there full-time at the moment. That's how a lot of places do it. I know if people had to live full-time in their district before elections here it would complicate quite a few political aspirations.

Posted by: Ivansmom | January 27, 2011 7:04 PM | Report abuse

Also, that'd be an instant one-term limit for congressmen.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 27, 2011 7:12 PM | Report abuse

Happy to have power back. Backpeddling, etc.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | January 27, 2011 7:14 PM | Report abuse

"If only there were a way to read the Borowitz Report every day without making some poor person cut and paste each and every article into the comments section of someone else's blog. Perhaps a method to allow people to go directly to The Borowitz Report website with just the click of a mouse. Or a service that would deliver it straight to your e-mail. Pshaw, I'm just dreaming.

"But I am sure Andy is grateful for the load being taken off of his servers."

Posted by: yellojkt | December 13, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 27, 2011 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Happy to have power back. Backpeddling, etc.

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | January 27, 2011 7:19 PM | Report abuse

I meant to send my sympathies to Jumper. I can certainly relate to forgetting the obvious and attempting the futile when it comes to keeping the wheels humming.

Liquid refreshment and a carton of eggs and some cream for my tea were my ostensible reasons for going out late in the day ... but I'm sure glad I did. The glory of snow's quiet message, the sights and sounds of children sledding in screaming laughter and joy, the Appalachian peace! Those, at least for me, are dividends without a price tag.

Posted by: talitha1 | January 27, 2011 7:20 PM | Report abuse

Darn that Movable Type. Picked up a whole post from 44 days ago. And posted CqP's backpeddling twice.

Joel, ya gotta take that thing into the shop for a checkup. Get somebody to look under the hood. the hood. the hood. the hood. the hood.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 27, 2011 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, CqP--you inspired me to define thus.

Backpeddle: (v.) When strangers ask you to buy something from their backpack.
Example: "Did you see that guy backpeddling rotgut outside that AA meeting?"

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 27, 2011 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Not sure what my 'dividends without a price tag' meant exactly, except that I'm glad for my life these days, simple though it is. Ah, tis well.

CqP, you Ok? TBG, Raysmom, BobS, got power yet? I've got quilts and warm beverages I can fax .....

Posted by: talitha1 | January 27, 2011 7:34 PM | Report abuse

Hope this does not end too badly, not looking that great right now,

http://www.jpost.com/Headlines/Article.aspx?id=205585

Posted by: dmd3 | January 27, 2011 7:40 PM | Report abuse

Tweet tonight from Dave Barry (@rayadverb):

Am I the last person to find out that there is an actual place called "University of Maryland University College?"

Posted by: -TBG- | January 27, 2011 7:45 PM | Report abuse

Those people are so brave, dmd. We take our freedoms for granted.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 27, 2011 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Mudge "If only there were a way to read the Borowitz Report every day..." If you go to this link:

http://borowitzreport.us1.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=49de3335c30245ecd0fa291aa&id=743947b930

you should be able to subscribe to the Borowitz Report and get it in your Inbox every day. At least that is what they say. I haven't tried it because I already get too much mail.

Posted by: orawh | January 27, 2011 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Jalapeno corn bread. Shoutout to the snowbound.

Posted by: Jumper1 | January 27, 2011 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, orawh. You've stumbled into the middle of a bit of paybacks-are-hell. I already subscribe to the Borowitz report. Every now and then, when I felt there was an especially good one, I would report it here. Since they are often pretty brief -- and because i get irritated at too many posts with links without explanation what they are-- I would simply post the entire piee, rather than simply a link to it.

However, 44 days ago, yello must have woken up especially snarky, and so posted the sarcastic comment I referenced above at 7:14. Seems he had some sort of problem with people posting Borowitz bon mots here...unless of course he is the one who does it, as he did today at 5:58. In many circles this would be considered hypocrisy.

So I wasn't really asking about how to get Borowitz reports. I was merely offering up his own crow for him to eat in case he felt hungry.

Sorry you stumbled into it. I would post a link to a relevant Maureen Dowd column, but I don't own that particular franchise shtick. I'm told one can read her column in the NYT, but it gets linked here with regularity, for the enjoyment of her many fan.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 27, 2011 8:23 PM | Report abuse

Good evening, all.

Did my fair share of shoveling 10" of heavy wet snow today - my driveway, sidewalk, some of the alleyway behind the house, the street out front... speaking of which, I intervened in a squabble across the street where a lady was yelling at a guy for parking in front of her house (right next door to his) yesterday before the snow fell. Street parking can be like that sometimes. Anyway, the guy was working to dig his vehicle out, but wasn't doing so very quickly - he's on crutches because he only has one full leg - the other ends at the knee.

So, here's this lady shrieking at this man to move his car one space backwards in the street, while he's struggling to dig 10" of heavy snow (and a nice berm of packed stuff from what little plowing there had been) one crutches and one leg, apparently not fast enough to suit her.

I saw - and heard - this from across the street while I was shoveling my front walk, so I crossed the street to help shovel the guy's car out, had a few quiet words with the, ahem, *lady* (e.g. "Do you know how this would read in the [name of local newspaper]?"), and proceeded to start digging the car out. A couple of teenage ladies arrived at nearly the same time, offering to help, and we got it knocked out in about 30 minutes. While we were digging, the *lady* asked for help digging her car out around the corner (all of 50 ft. away), and was carrying a broom, and gesturing meaningfully. Her other next door neighbor (who'd also arrived on the scene with a shovel) quickly offered to help her and they walked over to her car.

I held my tongue from wondering aloud why she needed her car to get around, seeing as she had that broom...

Anyway, the guy was very thankful, the young ladies quite nice. As always, snowstorms, as troublesome as they can be, are always good for spending quality time with neighbors.

And that's something.

And yeah, I threw some snowballs today. But not at my neighbors.

yello -- speaking of trees, I was dismayed to find my big front evergreen lying on the ground, bent all the way over from the weight of the snow. I think I can save it, but I'm probably going to have to cable it to something - after the snow's gone, of course.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | January 27, 2011 8:33 PM | Report abuse

bc, good for you for helping, and so impressed at how calmly you handled that.

Posted by: dmd3 | January 27, 2011 8:41 PM | Report abuse

But first a musical interlude for those of us over 55: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HzSaoN2LdfU

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 27, 2011 8:48 PM | Report abuse

bc,
Snow can bring out the best in people and the worst. Your story gives a wonderful example of both.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 27, 2011 8:54 PM | Report abuse

I feel bad about telling all you under snow conditions about how nice it has been here on the left coast. Clear skies at night with the temp at 28F and just before dawn a fog develops and freezes and shortly thereafter the sun comes up over the mountain so we get a silvery white morning. Then it warms and brite globes form on the ends of all the tree limbs and power lines and drop one by one like olde english fireworks. It gets up to almost 60F in the afternoon. Yesterday we had a sky of orange sherbet orange with long patches of bright pale blue in between. Over on the coast at Brookings it was 70F yesterday.
About now the covey of twenty quail will be showing up for their evening feed to keep their craws warm over night. They eat until it is almost pitch black A splinter group has been showing up in the afternoon. One male and five females. We are trying to figure out if he is the bigamist that was here last summer with three wives and their chicks.
It must be warming. One mourning dove stayed around all winter. Then over the past week there was three sitting out there in the dark in the morning waiting to feed. Then the were five, six, seven. Yesterday there were nine. Number nine was a horny male.

Posted by: bh72 | January 27, 2011 8:57 PM | Report abuse

An ahh story
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/01/27/BAP01HEK9S.DTL

Posted by: bh72 | January 27, 2011 9:13 PM | Report abuse

That's a great link, bh72. Thanks for sharing it.

Posted by: -TBG- | January 27, 2011 9:22 PM | Report abuse

bh72, interesting that you brought doves up - a white-winged dove showed up in this area (NW of DC) recently. My daughters and I were wondering why folks had set up cameras and whatnot at an intersection nearby, aiming their gear at a birdfeeder at sunrise and sunset in January. We found out later that those were very dedicated birders, and that such a critter was Cause For a Great Excitement for area birdwatchers; unusual in the NE US, much less in 20 deg F. weather.

I haven't seen it myself, but I'm keeping Buffalo wing sauce in the car, just in case.

bc

Posted by: -bc- | January 27, 2011 9:51 PM | Report abuse

I bet they tweeted the sighting, too.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 27, 2011 10:06 PM | Report abuse

That's really cool, bh! What a wonderful gift for the children.

We made it up the mountain, no snow on the road till we got to our street. Thank heavens for four wheel drive, Mr. T had to use it to get up the street and then out of the driveway. We enjoyed Winterfeast, lotsa good food from all the fine dining establishments in the area.

Posted by: slyness | January 27, 2011 10:09 PM | Report abuse

The local weather guy, Ray Russell, has a great website and is now on Facebook. He commented today about the weather in North America and this applies to all of us:

This image of the Northern Hemisphere shows temperature anomalies (the difference from normal) from Dec 1, 2010 to Jan 24, 2011. Notice that average temperatures in Eastern Canada have been 26 degrees above normal (unheard of warmth) while temperatures in the Southeastern US have been 10 degrees below normal. That’s a ...result of a persistently negatively NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation) and a persistently negative AO (Arctic Oscillation).

The NAO is the difference in barometric pressure between Iceland and the Azores. A negative NAO indicates the weakening of the typical "Icelandic Low" and the "Azores high". As a result, the normal westerly flow across Canada decreases resulting a buildup of colder air over Western Canada. Ridging forms in the North Atlantic creating a “blocking pattern”. The net effect drives cold air from Western Canada to the Southeast U. S. (instead of west to east across Canada). We get cold while Eastern Canada is warmer than normal.

Combine that with lows moving through the Southern Jet Stream, and we gets lots of snow. The same thing happened in January and February last year. The difference being that last year was an El Nino year; so, those lows in the Southern Jet were strong and more moist. Believe it or not, we have received less than half of normal precipitation in January (here in western North Carolina). This year's systems have had relatively little moisture, but because of the cold, they have been very efficient in producing lots of snow from that limited moisture. Have you noticed how much more quickly this year’s snows have disappeared compared to last year. That’s because they have much less water in them.

This Negative NAO that persisted from late November to mid-January is diminishing. Eventually, that will spell more normal weather for North America.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Rays-Weather-Center/167617589938698

http://www.booneweather.com/snowforecast.shtml

Posted by: slyness | January 27, 2011 10:15 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, that was wonderful! bh72, that was very interesting and sweet.

Lots of flat roof collapses today around here. One very dramatic one trapped two men in a car for a few hours, they were saved by the fire dept. and not badly hurt. The link's wording is wrong, it was a 'car barn' not an office building:

http://boston.cbslocal.com/2011/01/27/people-trapped-in-partial-collapse-of-lynn-office-building/

Posted by: badsneakers | January 27, 2011 10:15 PM | Report abuse

Yeehaw! We gotta herd the pick-ups into the used car barn for bilkin' time?

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 27, 2011 10:25 PM | Report abuse

slyness very interesting information, I think the 26F difference in Eastern Canada temps is a little easier understood, when it is explain that that area is closer to northern Central Canada, and quite far north at that. The map was small but it seems the area most affected would be from Montreal and then north and west well up into Hudson's Bay. It could quite easily be 26F warmer and yet still be cold in those parts.

Unfortunately I am south of the warm area - an increase of 5F to 26F here in the last month would have made for some great weather for us.

Posted by: dmd3 | January 27, 2011 10:48 PM | Report abuse

Why can't the people of Chicago vote for whomever they want? Why does it matter where that person lives? It's the law around here, too, but why? I can think of some people I'd be delighted to have as my representative or mayor who don't live here. Winston Churchill represented Oldham (near Manchester), Manchester North West, Dundee (Scotland!), Epping (near London) and Woodford (metro London) during his career, and also lost elections for the Leicester and Westminster Abbey seats -- while not living in any of those districts.

LTL-CA

Posted by: Jim19 | January 27, 2011 11:28 PM | Report abuse

A guy with an owl walks into a bar with an unemployed copyeditor working as bartender...

http://www.gocomics.com/features/151/feature_items/571266

Posted by: yellojkt | January 28, 2011 5:07 AM | Report abuse

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

Good morning, friends. I do hope everyone dealing with snow has power. It's just awful when the lights go out! Stay safe and indoors, and don't forget to check on the elderly.

A tad chilly here this morning, but promising to warm up later this afternoon. Ah, it's a free day, no work in sight, except that facing me in this apartment. I'll probably overlook that, as usual. I hope it warms up enough to sit on the porch, that would be nice.

Slyness, enjoy your retreat and the good food.

Instead of hearing good news about my hearing-aid, the State sent me a letter saying that it's possible someone has accessed my personal information because of a lost disk with instructions on how to protect myself! *sigh*

I hope Nelson Mandela recovers, and goes home from the hospital.

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

Posted by: cmyth4u | January 28, 2011 6:02 AM | Report abuse

It is reported on the front page of the WashPost, that Nelson Mandela is home. I wish him the best.

And on another note...should we(US)be worried about the uprisings going on in the Middle East? I know some of those props should come down, but the lack of any leadership isn't good for a country I would think, how is this going to affect us, if at all?

Posted by: cmyth4u | January 28, 2011 6:12 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, I'm embarrassed by my faux pas. I only started re-lurking here after the Giffords blog so I am not au courant about things that came before that and not up-to-date about the interactions between the Boodlers.

Posted by: orawh | January 28, 2011 6:49 AM | Report abuse

CqP, have you seen Lady Gaga on a bad project yet? :-)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fl4L4M8m4d0

Posted by: DNA_Girl | January 28, 2011 7:07 AM | Report abuse

DGirl -- you made my day. And, will use as a Friday,end-of-discussion bon mot....

Posted by: CollegeQuaParkian1 | January 28, 2011 7:34 AM | Report abuse

DNAGirl,
The costume budget for that video must have been enormous.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 28, 2011 7:35 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, you all. DNA_Girl, I clicked on your link and shortly after husband came into the room, peeking in, thought that voice was me, calling in pain...:-)).

My "most positive comment award" goes to both Bh72 (9:13 PM) and to bc (8:33 PM). From now on I may just refer to my preference as mpca. Recently I learned that it is much healthier to surround myself with positive comments, positive people. This boodle is full of both, thanks.

Oh, on your large evergreen, bc. Last winter our heavily budded, spring blooming, 15 ft. camellia had the same reaction during the blizzard here. It's twin stood firm, this one did not bounce back after the snow melted.

There is a strong, wide tape, a strong, wide fabric tape that the nurses use to hold the gauze in place on my arm/hand. After asking where I could buy this tape, as it was so strong, yet soft enough not to cut into the bark, one of the nurses brought me a whole roll of the stuff...she wore an angel pin on her white jacket, too.

Anyway, with three large stakes and the whole role of tape, husband secured said camilla and straighted it. It remains straight to this day.

Tape comes in assortment of colors, but color fades, fast. Dunno its' proper name, tho


Posted by: VintageLady | January 28, 2011 7:46 AM | Report abuse

Cassandra, on what is happening in the Mediterranean region, "chickens come home to roost." To quote an old professor of mine, "unlike many people, I actually enjoy telling you that I told you so."

Posted by: russianthistle | January 28, 2011 7:46 AM | Report abuse

scc: Only one stake, did not need three. Just one stake and tape yanked it upright. Held it there, just fine.

Posted by: VintageLady | January 28, 2011 7:51 AM | Report abuse

After a discussion last evening, we are launching a new business to sell EFC's. Clearly, there is a market for them.

Posted by: russianthistle | January 28, 2011 7:54 AM | Report abuse

Reading Krauthammer is such a joy. No clue. No conscience, either. Reality has no place in a Krauthammer piece; there is also no fear of being disingenuous.

BTW, the most evil group in the United States in some circles are the Teachers Unions. What a joke. They are the evil ones ruining the country.

I defy any normal smart person to try to talk to such an opinion holder for more than 30 minutes to try to figure out how any of that makes any sense--even to them.

Posted by: russianthistle | January 28, 2011 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Cassandra!!! *HUGSSSS*

So nice to see the electric utility crews all lined up in their staging area as I Dawn Patrolled in... NOT. Let's hope everyone gets their power back very soon.

*TFSMIF-in-a-very-compacted-sort-of-way Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 28, 2011 8:12 AM | Report abuse

And let us never forget some very solemn anniversaries:

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2011/01/27/apollo-1-challenger-columbia-and-those-who-sacrifice-for-the-stars/

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 28, 2011 8:18 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle.

orawh, you have nothing to be embarrassed about.Sometimes it takes a while around here to figure everything out and what's going on. And we do tend a lot to bounce back and forth in time, and refer to semi-obscure things from years gone by. It isn't always easy to just pop in and figure out what's going on. Anybody got that link handy to ther Boodle FAQs and errata? (One used to be up top, but it's not there any more.)

DNA_girl, loved the Gaga parody.

Now here's actually a pretty good idea, but the front page, politics page and actual story page headlines make it look like the opposite of what it is: an anti-birther solution. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/27/AR2011012705646.html

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 28, 2011 8:41 AM | Report abuse

S'nuke,

Yes. Truly a solemn anniversary. Every military base I've lived on has had a school named after Gus Grissom, much like just about every school district in Florida has a Christa McAuliffe Elementary School. It seems every generation gets its own space disaster.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 28, 2011 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Morning Al!

I am warm and toasty and internet-connected, but unfortunately I'm at our local Sometimes-Despised-Mega-Coffee_Franchise and not my own house. Power company "estimated" that our power would return 5-11 p.m. yesterday. A crew showed up at 4:30, hung around a while, and left without fixing anything. Estimate has been updated to 5-11 p.m. today. I just sent an e-mail to our Fairfax County Supervisor about it. It felt a little like sending a letter to Santa, but we've already contacted the power company numerous times, so what the hey.

Thanks for the heart-warming story, bc. And Scotty's reminder brought a tear or three to my eye.

Posted by: Raysmom | January 28, 2011 9:09 AM | Report abuse

I remember where I was when I heard about the Challenger disaster: on my way to have lunch with a friend, with an eight-week-old Geekdottir swaddled in the carseat. Mike Smith was a Charlotte native and his funeral was held in the little church on South Boulevard where he grew up.

Good morning, all. DNA_Girl, I'm going to forward that to the young man I hope Geekdottir will marry. He's in his second semester of a four year process to get a doctorate in archeology. God bless his soul.

Cassandra, I hope you are warm and comfortable! It's snowing here but we are inside and warm, such a good feeling.

bc, I hope you continue to have opportunities to have positive interactions with your new neighbors.

Posted by: slyness | January 28, 2011 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Raysmom, you should have sent that letter to the county people with the salutation: Dear Santa,...

You may get the point across.

Posted by: russianthistle | January 28, 2011 9:27 AM | Report abuse

"What's in this box?" DNA girl... thanks for the video!

Took Dr G 10 years for the PhD. We got married one month before he started. Had Daughter two weeks before he defended.

Just looked outside... it's snowing. Yikes.

I'm putting off heading into work. The electricity is on in some parts of the building, including the office. But there's no Internet. I guess that means I can do my work with no distractions, but do I really want to?

Posted by: -TBG- | January 28, 2011 9:45 AM | Report abuse

I remember what I was doing on the day of the Challenger disaster also. I was watching the news, and I remember the day being so cold, but was bright and sunny. I went to take the trash outside and I thought to myself, it's too cold for man or beast out here. When I came back in, I saw the Challenger burst and the debris flying around in the sky. I sat in front of the televison all day. I was in shock, could not believe what my eyes saw. Glued to the televison set. Just horrible.

Posted by: cmyth4u | January 28, 2011 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Okay, so where were we?

We lost power on and off all afternoon on Wednesday, and then for good at around 10:15 that night. It came back on at around 3:00 yesterday afternoon, although it took a bit of time to get the heat and hot water churning. But, alas, Comcast was down until probably sometime earlier today. I actually got to get more than 50 email messages, maybe one of which did not go into the junk file.

The lack of access to television turned out to be a blessing that I think I'll follow more often. I got several more chapters of Don Quixote read, and I love Cervantes even more -- in fact, it occurs to me that he would have made a fantastic boodler! Wow -- what a writer! Ironic, funny, intellectual, snarky -- yep, he'd fit in well.

And, now, gotta catch up on work. Cya later.

Posted by: ftb3 | January 28, 2011 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, thanks. I actually have the Achenblog FAQ copied from Mo's Den of Darkness blog the previous time I lurked. I will have to go over it again. By the way, what happened to Mo? Is she still around with a different handle? The link is

http://boodle.wetpaint.com:80/page/Achenblog+FAQ

I just clicked on that link and though it is still up, the link to Mo's Den of Darkness leads to a site in Japanese. No amount of fiddling with encoding seems to get it into English.

Posted by: orawh | January 28, 2011 10:06 AM | Report abuse

tee hee, weed.

I actually got through on the phone to the county supervisor's office and actually mentioned my letter to Santa. Felt good to talk to a genuine human being, even though I'm pretty sure there's very little she can actually do.

Still at the House O'Coffee with Raysdad. Ray's at home, totally loving the chill in the air. (orawh, Ray's a dog--no need to call CPS.)

Posted by: Raysmom | January 28, 2011 10:15 AM | Report abuse

Mo switched jobs inside her agency (she works for the feds here in town in one specific agency. Since the job change she can't Boodle from work, and I know she's very Boodle. Why she no longer Boodles at night I can't say. But she stays in loose touch off-Boodle.

Over the years a couple dozen Boodlers, some of them original founders, have dropped out or reduced participation significantly. It happens.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 28, 2011 10:21 AM | Report abuse

I was coming back from working in the motor pool at my unit in Germany when I turned on the TV and saw the Challenger...

Over and over and over.

Knowing that a N.H. teacher was on the ill-fated flight made the punch in the gut that much harder to take.

In other news: Izzit just me or does Mr. TPHD look an awwwwwwful lot like Kent Brockman?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/27/AR2011012707003.html

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 28, 2011 10:28 AM | Report abuse

I just got an email from "S" saying that he was watching one of the maintenance guys at work doing so snow blowing - on the roof of the building. I assume that after the spate of roof collapses here in the past 36 hours, this is a good idea. I'd like to know how the guy got the snow blower up to the roof.

Posted by: badsneakers | January 28, 2011 10:31 AM | Report abuse

I was in university and was watching the news when the challenger exploded - followed the story most of the day.


On a completely different topic, an new way for me to waste time, coming soon, Qwiki - being a very visual person this will be great for me.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/video/watch-a-qwiki-demonstration/article1886060/?cmpid=rss1&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+TheGlobeAndMail-Front+%28The+Globe+and+Mail+-+Latest+News%29&utm_content=Google+International

Posted by: dmd3 | January 28, 2011 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Just got the answer about the snow blower:

"They took the blower, on a dolly, to the third floor on the freight elevator and then four of them carried it up the one flight to the roof."

SCC: and of course you all knew that was 'some' snow blowing.

Posted by: badsneakers | January 28, 2011 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Morning, y'all! I collapsed with a good book and then some deep sleep last night, so will finish backboodling in a few minutes. But I wanted to give a shout-out and ROTHFL to bc for this one line from his sweet digging-out story ...

"I held my tongue from wondering aloud why she needed her car to get around, seeing as she had that broom..."

D-light-full!
_______

We've got a half-inch of frozen something (snosleetrain?) coming down. In hopes that you're all safe and warm, I wish you a great Friday.



Posted by: talitha1 | January 28, 2011 10:39 AM | Report abuse

You really can't lob a softball like "Do you have time for a Qwiki?" at me and expect me to remain functional.

The entry on Kurt Vonnegut is just awful.

http://www.qwiki.com/q/#!/Kurt_Vonnegut

This thing has a long way to go.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 28, 2011 10:46 AM | Report abuse

orawh, can you talk a little about yourself and where you live (aproximately) in Israel? Jerusalem? Elsewhere? Former occupation? When/how you made aliyah?

As you may have guessed, here on the Boodle we take inordinate pride in our internationalism. Well, not so much that sort to the north -- a wily, cunning often bi-lingual bunch with intent on invasion -- but the rest of our overseas peeps, either by birth/ethnic origin, or by actual location. We got peeps in Chile, the Far East and Malaysia, and had one in Belgium for a while.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 28, 2011 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Snowing lightly here in mid-MoCo, as predicted. I never got home Wednesday night. Finally turned around and headed back towards the office. Meanwhile, my wife was able to locate a retired colleague who lives right across from the office, who was kind enough to take a straggler in, and so I got a warm bed for the night. It was that, or see if I could get back in the building and find a couch someplace. Power came on at home at about 2 a.m. this morning.

Posted by: ebtnut | January 28, 2011 10:56 AM | Report abuse

I'm sorta, kinda wondering about the size of the bonuses Pepco executives are going to give each other this year. After all, we can't have unhappy executives, eh?

This might be a good time to get a Canuckistani invasion. At least *they* know what to do under these circumstances.

*snort*, eh? (I thrive on my multilingual capability)

Posted by: ftb3 | January 28, 2011 11:04 AM | Report abuse

If we have to invade the South to be able to live in a place that's got snow, we will by Jove.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | January 28, 2011 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Good day, y'all.

Here's to everyone having a warm, cozy weekend starting now.

Nothing otherwise to add.

Posted by: MsJS | January 28, 2011 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Or maybe not, ftb. The CEO of our local electric utility resigned quickly last Friday when a news team revealed its findings in an investigation of his, quite simply put, corruption. The major player in power in Ontario has had a history of troubling executive behaviour for years. Most un-Canadian.

Posted by: Yoki | January 28, 2011 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Oh, dear, Yoki. Has he said that he's "sorry" yet? After all, if he's Canadian ... (well, you know).

Posted by: ftb3 | January 28, 2011 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, you wanted to know more about me so here goes. My real name is Ora, and actually I would prefer to be addressed that way. (The wh are the initials of my maiden name and my married name.) I was Ora even when I lived in the States. I was born in Los Angeles XX years ago, which you can probably figure out. I graduated from U.C.L.A. and soon afterwards came to Israel but not for ideological reasons. Why I moved to Israel is hard to explain. I really didn't intend to settle here. My mother was the Zionist of the family, not me. I had an aunt, my mother's sister, living in Israel, and she kept inviting me to visit. I finished my student teaching in January, 1960 and was supposed to start teaching the following month but I really needed a vacation. My decision to come to Israel on a visit was more in the spirit of adventure than anything else. In the end, I came and stayed.

I live in Tel Aviv. I used to teach English (as a second language) to high school students but later taught adults. Much more enjoyable.

I am a widow with two grown children but alas no grandchildren (though I still have hopes).I am now retired and am enjoying my retirement very much. Getting older is not nearly as bad as some people think, as long as you know how to take advantage of it.

I guess that about answers your questions so I wish you and the other Boodlers a very good week-end.


Posted by: orawh | January 28, 2011 11:43 AM | Report abuse

Haven't boddled much, as it took me SEVEN hours to get home! grrrr..... people were leaving their cars any ol' d@mmm place they feel like on I-270: six lanes to choose from, plus four shoulders, and these @sshats plunk their buggy smack dab in the middle and walk away. Notwithstanding what that does to my blood pressure, I've had this, ahem, prostate (or lack thereof) thing, and sittin for 7 hours without being able to answer natures' call is, well, ... you get the picture. Thank you for letting me vent.

Jumper, I feel your pain about trying to fix a flat yourself. Been there, done that, many, many times. I've finaly gotten the hang of it. Younger daughter's big, strong boyfriend was trying to do it a few months ago, and failed. I then gave it a try. With just the right body english, I set the plug in with what *looked* like the greatest of ease. Made me feel good.

Gotta give a big BZ to bc for his Good Samaritan acts to his one legged neighbor. I've seen @asshats like the wicked witch lady in action, and think that bc did a fine job of shutting her down. If it were me, I probably woulda slapped her upside the head with my snow shovel.

Posted by: Don_from_I-270 | January 28, 2011 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Good video of discovery of the work of extraordinary photographer Vivian Meier.
"...how much undiscovered brilliance is all around us"?

http://ttomlinson.blogspot.com/2011/01/nanny-photog-genius.html


Posted by: Jumper1 | January 28, 2011 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Hhhmmm ... less coffee, more deep breaths.

I really am a nice guy, I think.

Is it lunch time, yet?

Posted by: Don_from_I-270 | January 28, 2011 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Lunch? Someone mention lunch?

Soup and sandwich day here.
-Tomato basil soup
-Lentil soup w/ veggies
-Turkey, curried chicken salad, or tuna salad sandwiches (lettuce, tomato, carrot shavings, sliced onion, mustard and mayo available)
-assorted beverages
-fresh pineapple wedges
-ginger cookies

Posted by: MsJS | January 28, 2011 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Wow, Jumper. That's extraordinary, and what an eye she had. Simply magnificent. I've sent the link to a lot of people. Thanks!

Posted by: ftb3 | January 28, 2011 12:14 PM | Report abuse

I smell a book and movie deal in here somewhere-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12304651

Posted by: kguy1 | January 28, 2011 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Not on my TO DO list-

http://web.orange.co.uk/article/quirkies/Monk_shows_off_balls_of_steel

"The martial art is divided into hard crotch Kung Fu - and soft crotch Kung Fu."

Posted by: kguy1 | January 28, 2011 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Power's back! *Snoopy dances*

Maybe there *is* a Santa Claus.

Easy, there, Don. But good on ya' for staying with your buggy and not joining the abandoners.

Posted by: Raysmom | January 28, 2011 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Power's back! *Snoopy dances*

Maybe there *is* a Santa Claus.

Easy, there, Don. But good on ya' for staying with your buggy and not joining the abandoners.

Posted by: Raysmom | January 28, 2011 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Musta been a power surge, eh Raysmom?? *waving* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | January 28, 2011 1:14 PM | Report abuse

I *swear* I only hit Submit once. Musta been all the caffeine from the Big House O'Coffee...

Posted by: Raysmom | January 28, 2011 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Ora, thanks for the link to the FAQ. Being a newcomer myself (whatever "Blogstats" might say) I'm taking great pleasure in reading through it.

Don, I hear ya on the car abandonment thing. We had similar situation last year in the Boston area. I think the final tally was 400 cars towed by the State Police off of I90 alone. Amazing.

MsJS, lunch looks excellent. I'll take some of everything. And then if you could just hop on the rowing machine for me? Excellent.

I had drinks last night with my new upstairs neighbor. A nice conversation and I've finagled and invite to dinner with him and his girlfriend. Well done.

I'm playing hooky today. I highly recommend it.

Posted by: cowhand214 | January 28, 2011 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Many thanks for the summary, ora; sounds like an interesting life. Did you do a stint in the IDF? Musta been pretty interesting (read: scary) in '67 and '73.

Don, what I can never figure out about the @asshats who abandon their cars in the middle of I-270 or wherever is...where do they go? How do they get there? What could possbily be in their heads? What do they do/say when they get there? "Yeah, here I am hunkered down in the Exxon station while my car is a mile back, abandoned, in a blizzard, in the middle of an expressway. Please pass me another Slim-Jim." Is it I-need-a-bathroom panic? Some other kind of panic? I dunno.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 28, 2011 1:42 PM | Report abuse

How To Argue On The Internet:

http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/steven-baxter/2011/01/straight-middle-discussion

How many common boodler and/or boodle-troll tactics can you spot? No need to name names. One of these is practically my raison d'être.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 28, 2011 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Actually (ex-newspaper editor that I am) I think there might be a pretty interesting stoery there. After one of these gridlock blizzrds, a reporter should get a list of the 100 or 200 or 400 cars that are abandoned, find out where they are toyed to, and how much all this costs. How much do the owners pay to ransom their vehicles back. Then get a list of those people and try to track down and interview as many as possible. Try to get their stories and their thinking. What did they do? Why? Would they do it again in the same circumstances?

Weingarten would write a he11uva piece on this. Why, the bathroom-related aspect alone would hold him in thrall for a year.

Also, interview the people who DIDN'T abandon. What was it like for them? Don, what did you do for 11 hours in your car?

I wonder how many of those cars were abandoned because they ran out of gas. That might explain a lot of them.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 28, 2011 1:56 PM | Report abuse

I *swear* I only hit Submit once. Musta been all the caffeine from the Big House O'Coffee...

Posted by: Raysmom | January 28, 2011 2:05 PM | Report abuse

*rowing for cowhand*

Posted by: MsJS | January 28, 2011 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Searching for cars they left behind
By William Wan
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, January 28, 2011

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/27/AR2011012707700.html

Posted by: yellojkt | January 28, 2011 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Weingarten, here is the story behind why he was propositioning women on the street:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/01/21/AR2011012105347.html

You'll get a charge out of it.

Posted by: yellojkt | January 28, 2011 2:40 PM | Report abuse

No, Mudge, I was never in the army but both my son and daughter were. However they didn't serve in '67 or '73 as neither had been born yet. In '67, I was teaching high school and what I remember most was that the students were told to dig trenches and fill up sandbags in the school grounds during the 3 weeks of waiting before the outbreak of the war, as there were no shelters. When the war finally did come, it was over so quickly that we could hardly believe it. The war of '73 was another matter. Another scary time was during the First Gulf War in 1991. The homefront was subject to rocket attacks and every time the siren went we had to go into the safest room in the house, put on our gas masks and seal the doors and windows.

There were other scary times, too, when buses and restaurants were being blown up. But all in all we tried and keep trying to live our lives as normally as possible.

Now the radio and t.v. here are full of the events in Lebanon and Egypt (Tunisia affects us less). Very unsettling. We don't yet know what effect they will have on us. So I lurk on the Boodle and try not to listen to the news too much.

Posted by: orawh | January 28, 2011 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Ora, as you may have noticed, we also are fond of sharing favorite websites, gardening tips, recipes, stories about bears, and books/authors. If you have interest in those areas, we'd love you to share.

Or pick your own area, for that matter.

Posted by: MsJS | January 28, 2011 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for that link, yello. See? I knew it was a good idea for an article.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 28, 2011 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Thanks MsJS. Occasionally I go into one of the links posted here. However, I am a lousy cook and don't enjoy cooking so recipes are not for me. I also don't have a garden and would be a lousy gardener if I had one. As for books, I have a pile of unread books that I keep intending to read but things, like lurking here, keep coming up and then I have no time. I know these are just some examples, of course. However, I did appreciate the comments on the movie "The King's Speech" or Peach as some have called it and, as it has just opened here, I plan to see it.

Cats are one of my great loves--I have three felines of the alley cat breed. If there are any other ailurophiles out there, I could swap cats stories and tips with them. Like: NOTHING in the house is unbreakable. But most people prefer dogs.

Have a great week-end.

Posted by: orawh | January 28, 2011 3:58 PM | Report abuse

SCC: Cat stories, in the singular.

Posted by: orawh | January 28, 2011 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Then there's this idiot:

"GOP senator favors cutting US aid to Israel

By DONNA CASSATA
The Associated Press
Friday, January 28, 2011; 1:54 PM

WASHINGTON -- Tea party-backed Republican Sen. Rand Paul favors cutting U.S. aid to Israel as part of a deficit-driven effort to slash government spending by $500 billion this year, drawing criticism from Democrats and Republicans who argue the U.S. must be unwavering in its support for the longtime Mideast ally."

Fortunately, he'll get shot down in flames.

Posted by: curmudgeon6 | January 28, 2011 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, Rand Paul is known around here as being unfriendly towards Israel. Fortunately, I hope, he is in the minority.

Posted by: orawh | January 28, 2011 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Welcome fellow-cat-lover Ora! While I have developed a tolerance for a few of my friends' canines, I will never own one. I'm swamped at work today, but I'd love to swap kitty stories some boodle. :)

Posted by: MoftheMountain | January 28, 2011 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Ora, I think Rand Paul is not unfriendly towards aid to israel any more than he is unfriendly towards aid to Egypt, or any other place. He is very near-sighted when it comes to where the US should be acting. Arms length beyond the border is about it for Rand.

Posted by: baldinho | January 28, 2011 4:20 PM | Report abuse

The border being Kentucky or that of Louisville. I'm sure he downright hates it when folks from all over come to the Kentucky Derby.

Posted by: ftb3 | January 28, 2011 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Any time, MoftheMountain. One of my cats, the aptly named Scampy, has "written" several diary entries.

Posted by: orawh | January 28, 2011 4:26 PM | Report abuse

* interruption *
Anyone interested in some good, interesting analysis of what's happening in Tunisia, Egypt and other Middle East Arab states, go to foriegnpolicy.com and look for recent articles by my cousin Ellen Knickmeyer. She left her base in Yemen to cover the Tunisia uprising and hopes soon to go to Egypt.

* pardon the interruption *

Posted by: Ivansmom | January 28, 2011 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Rogue felines here
under sofas hiss at me.
I'm not meow-ish.

-Wilbrodog-

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 28, 2011 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Rand Paul is in favor of eliminating federal aid to poor residents of his own state, which has lots of them. Though as best I can tell, he didn't carry the poorest counties in east Kentucky.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Robertson_fix_Kentucky_Senatorial_Election_Results_by_County,_2010.svg

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 28, 2011 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Knock knock at the door
"Would you like to be saved by pets?"
Book in mouth. Pup eyes.

-Wilbrodog-

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 28, 2011 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Hey everyone. We lost power Wednesday night and, as far as I know, the house might still be in the dark. After two nights shivering we gave up and went to a hotel. We had to find one that took dogs, but that was easier than we feared.

Anyway, we are enjoying the wonders of heated water, artificial lightening, and the wonders of the electronic age.

The downside, is that we have myself, my wife, my daughter, and the dog in one room. So I am hopeful when I drive back tomorrow morning blessed electrification will have returned.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | January 28, 2011 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Aljazeera says the Speaker of the Egyptian parliament will have an important announcement shortly.

The burning ruling party headquarters is close to the Museum of Antiquities. The latter is apparently getting some protection.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | January 28, 2011 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Yello, that story was good. I'd love to have no low-end pep, especially when trying to get my car moving over chunks of snow and ice at stop signs.

My biggest question would be if the volt has all-wheel drive and how it handles in serious snow, and how the battery sustains itself in extreme (-40, 120 degree temperatures) or worse.

Also, I'd like to know if there's room for a dog as a copilot in the back.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | January 28, 2011 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, you wouldn't happen to know how to get in touch with Mo would you? She sent me a Xmas card, but I can't find it in this junk. I just wanted to send her a thank you note.

RDP, hope you get home soon.

Posted by: cmyth4u | January 28, 2011 4:56 PM | Report abuse

One of my colleagues and his wife are planning a trip to Egypt in early March (I think). I suspect that either they might want to change their plans or things will have cooled down by then. *cringe*

Posted by: ftb3 | January 28, 2011 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Welcome, ora! You are the second person so named I have known. The other is my oldest aunt, who is almost 92 and looks the same as I remember her looking when I was a kid. A great lady, she was a first grade teacher.

I liked Weingarten's story. I hope to purchase a car like that when it's time to replace the RAV. Hopefully that won't be necessary before 2016.

The unrest in Tunisia and Egypt has to concern Khaddafi. Mr. T heard a news report that the unrest may impact the Suez canal and cause gasoline prices to rocket. Hooboy, exactly what we need, with the world economy still not recovered.

Posted by: slyness | January 28, 2011 5:22 PM | Report abuse

New Kit -- and it's a guest blog by Rachel!

Posted by: ftb3 | January 28, 2011 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Boodling continues to amaze, confound and delight ... sending warmth and thanks to all, especially to RD! Get home safe, friend.

I've got a question, perhaps just rhetorical. Do any of you believe in 'karmic justice'?

Posted by: talitha1 | January 28, 2011 5:54 PM | Report abuse

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