April 2010


Happy Tax Day.

The NY Times has a front-page story about Tea Partiers and it’s shocking.  Shocking in that they are forced to admit that Tea Partiers are “wealthier and more well-educated than the general public…”  The Times does make sure to point out that participants are also “Republican, white, male, married and older than 45.”

Well, I’m female and single, but I still agree with most of what the Tea Partiers stand for, which is lower taxes, more fiscal responsibility, more personal responsibility and attention paid to the Constitution.  I’m sure there’s a Tea Party in Sarasota over by the Marina downtown, and I’ll try to stop by if I have time after work.

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What is the President thinking, dropping manned space exploration?  Neil Armstrong, James Lovell and Eugene Cernan wrote to him and asked him not to do it.  The ever-prescient Charles Krauthammer wrote about it last summer.  This is actually something the government SHOULD be involved with.

For someone who is supposedly so smart, he demonstrates a shocking lack of intellectual curiosity.  But, if you think about it, maybe it’s not so shocking.  We know he believes the universe revolves around him, so I guess he thinks there’s no point visiting any of it.  It’s pretty sad (and scary) that we’ll have to rely on the Russians to get our people into space.

Badly done, Mr. President.  Badly done.

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To say that this is not the way the team (and the fans) wanted to start the season is an understatement.  I’m not going to slam a rookie like Jenrry Mejia for giving up a home run in the 10th, but I will slam the veterans in the lineup for going 1-for-12 with runners in scoring position.  David Wright had another home run, but in a losing cause.

The Mets head to St. Louis after today’s day game.  Luckily, I’ll be at McKechnie Field all weekend, to see the St. Lucie Mets (3-3) play the Bradenton Marauders (5-1) and will miss most of  will most assuredly be a debacle at Busch Stadium. I work with a Cardinals fan who has been taunting me all week, and I’m not looking forward to hearing him on Monday.  *sigh*

Both Jerry Manuel and Omar Minaya are on the hot seat and, to be honest, good riddance to both of them.

Back on March 24, I posted editorials from the NY Post and the Washington Times stating that Congress had exempted itself from Obamacare.  Well, it appears  a) that the Post and the Times may have been a bit hasty and b) that Her Highness, Nancy Pelosi, was right in telling us that we’d know what was in it when they passed it.  Somehow I don’t think this is what she meant. Hmmmmmmmm……

I don’t normally pay much attention to anything the NY Times has to say, but this is interesting, to say the least.   I think it’s positively Schadenfreudelicious.  

Hat tip to Hot Air’s Allahpundit:

…theoretically the law kicks them out of the federal health plan now in order to force them to join insurance exchanges … that don’t exist yet. Looking forward to tomorrow, when we’re inevitably told that they meant to do that. Exit question for lawyers: Who would have standing to sue to force the federal health plan to drop Congress now? Any citizen, or is it more refined than that?

At this point, I really don’t care who would have standing to sue.  I just want this thing gone.

Nunspeak has a terrific take on the situation, one that is naturally less snarky than mine.  Thank you, Sister Lisa.

This was on sale at Herrschner’s and, since I’ve been eying it longingly for a while in their catalog, I took advantage of the sale price and added it to the countless boxes of stash:

It’s called “Hoopla” and comes from Design Works Crafts (click on the picture to make it larger).  Unfortunately, it’s on Aida so I’ll visit Joann or Michael’s to pick up some white evenweave.  I think it looks like it’ll be fun to stitch.

Stitching this would probably drive me insane, but I just love the colors:

Thanks to my weird-looking magnifying glasses (similar to these), I can stitch again.  Life is good.

Of course, this number is based on the assumption that I got it right here.

The downtown Sarasota Whole Foods is located just about exactly one-half mile from the office, meaning that I can usually get there, pick up something from the buffet and get back to work within my alloted half hour lunch break.

Not today.

I walked up to Whole Foods, listening to Pandora’s Beatles Radio on my Droid, got lunch at the buffet and headed to the checkout line.  I got into the “express” line and was maybe #7.  The woman who was #1 couldn’t seem to figure out the credit card machine and kept dropping her card.  I scooted over to a regular line that had considerably fewer people and was right behind a very Distinguished-Looking Man (whose tasteful hoop earring did not detract one bit from his distinguished-looking-ness).  At the head of this line, as it turns out, was a woman who apparently had been drinking since before breakfast (yesterday) and was having a lot of trouble paying the cashier.  She’d already spilled her plate of food (hey, lady, that’s why they have those convenient little Chinese food cartons!) and was still apologizing while trying to figure out the money.  Finally, Distinguished-Looking Man leaned over the conveyor, sighed deeply, and said in a rather loud voice, “I’ll pay for it!!!”   I could not help but laugh, and then said I thought that people here in Florida were supposed to be laid back — he looked at me, rolled his eyes, and said “Hey, even Paradise has its share of lunatics.”

Yes sir, it most certainly does.

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On a happier note, I had $5 in Borders Bucks and a 25% coupon so I headed over to my local Borders, as is my wont on Fridays.  I picked up a copy of Nanny Returns by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus.  I’d read the duo’s earlier book, The Nanny Diaries, which made me laugh so hard I cried.  Yes, I know it’s a novel, but I have known so many people over the years who could have been members of the X family that I really could be forgiven for thinking it’s non-fiction.

Borders also had a $5.99-and-under table and I took advantage of some bargains.  I bought several books at $3.99 each, including Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher: A Political Marriage, by Nicholas Wapshott and Rosalind Franklin: The Dark Lady of DNA by Brenda Maddox.  And the TBR pile continues to grow…

When I first visited France back in the late 70s, I learned that everyone used fountain pens.  They even had disposable fountain pens and some sort of thingy that erased fountain pen ink.  I was in awe.  When I went back 2 years later to attend university, I did what all of the French students did and bought some of those cheapie pens when I bought the rest of my school supplies.  I loved them.  My handwriting had never looked so good.  Unfortunately, there were no disposable fountain pens yet when I came back to the US to finish my studies (and I certainly couldn’t afford a real one) so I used ballpoints again.

A few years later, I stumbled across disposable fountain pens in New York and picked some up.  Once again, my handwriting looked good, and I used them for pretty much everything, despite the fact that people thought I was a tad eccentric.  Then, in August of 1989, in honor of my 30th birthday, I went to Sam Flax on Park Avenue and bought this:

A marbleized blue Waterman Apostrophe.  I loved that pen.  I lost it a couple of times over the years, used disposables, tried roller balls, bought a Waterman Harmonie that leaked, etc.  But I always came back to my Apostrophe.

Until this past Tuesday.

I got to school, reached into my purse for my Apostrophe to take notes for my Probate class, and realized immediately that something was wrong.  My beloved pen had snapped in two and was irreparable.

So I visited ebay and Amazon and learned that the Apostrophe had been discontinued ages ago.  The only ones I could find were either in green or black or, if in blue, they came with a medium nib.   There is nothing like Joon or Sam Flax here in Sarasota, so I had to be daring and go through the Internet to buy my new pen.   So I went on to ebay and bought this from Montgomery Pens (based on Grand Street in New York’s Lower East Side — I probably passed it a zillion times over the years without knowing it):

It’s a silver-plated Waterman Allure with a fine nib.  I am very excited about it.   If I like this pen even half as much as my Apostrophe, it’s going to be a beautiful relationship.

Like a lot of readers who have more books on their TBR list than money with which to buy them, I am a big fan of the public library.  I have 2 local library systems from which to take out books, and I definitely take advantage of them.  I check my accounts every week or so to see where I am in the queue for holds.  This week, I had 2 books to take home: Unfinished Desires, a novel by Gail Godwin, and No Apology by Mitt Romney.  Unfinished Desires came highly recommended, and No Apology interests me primarily because of my love of politics.  I still haven’t finished Lost Moon (I talked about it back on the 31st), but am now about a third of the way through, and am finding it thoroughly engrossing.  Lovell, Haise and Swigert are in space, they’ve just finished the broadcast that wasn’t, and are just about to stir the tanks.  Even though I know how it ends, I still want to see how they get home.

Oh, and at some point, I really will start Pride and Prejudice. Honest.

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