Thursday, March 25, 2010

Blog rethink

Having reviewed carefully my writings of the past year or so, I've decided it's time to take a "leave" and rethink whether I might be able to make this thing better, and what, if anything, I might write that would accomplish that. I expect, therefore, that I will write nothing here until I have a plan, a new design and a better focus. The mundane things in my day to day existence have been pretty well worked over and over worked.

Maybe in time a new design and a new purpose - or maybe a realization that the time has come for me to keep my thoughts to myself. We shall see.

Now I have something to think about on my long drive home.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Barney Frank, quoted yesterday by Andy Birkey in the Minnesota Independent:

"Frank told the Hill this weekend, 'Any movement in which the intellectual leader is Michele Bachmann is obviously going to be problematic.'"

Understatement indeed!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Spring Training Game Two - 2010

"Who does he think he is? I've been in this line of traffic for half an hour and he thinks I'm going to let him in ahead of me? No Way!" said I as I sped up to close the gap to prevent his ugly rotten orange colored Pontiac Vibe from getting ahead of my much more worthy and attractive blue Subaru Outback. As we inched our joint and mutual ways through the lugubriously creeping line of cars to the far, far, extremely far away back 40 - called the west lot (or, more accurately, the bordering on California lot), we kept track of the orange Vibe and saw it zip ahead of us to park nearby in the pack of baseball fans who, like us, had been fobbed off into the wild, dusty nether fields of Glendale, Arizona.

We reached our seats in time for the beginning of the third inning and watched as the Cubby's kept the White Sox at bay almost effortlessly. I'm guessing there were about an equal number of fans for both teams in this, the first sell-out ever for a spring training game. Warm - very warm - sunshine and little breeze. A couple of beers for both of us, and a cheesy chili dog for me added to our experience, and Sue and I had quite a nice time cheering for the Cubs. We experienced a moment of incredulity when someone near us was overheard expounding that A.J. Pierzinski should eventually become a manager because he really knows the rules and loves the game. It occurred to us that A.J. might also need some people skills to become a successful manager, but then what do we know?

The game was played in the beautiful new White Sox spring training stadium at Camelback Ranch. I actually like White Sox fans. They seemed pleased about our new ball park, although there was some feeling that the team should reserve the right to play at the Metrodome in April and September.

We left in the eighth inning to get a jump on the traffic - which, as it happened, was a pretty meaningless gesture. Where our arrival at the game was accomplished by creeping along for many, many minutes, our departure from the game was marked by a gridlocked sea of vehicles, out of which no one was allowed to depart. During the seemingly endless period of our mutual forced immobility, we began chatting with our fellow prisoners, and particularly with the man in the orange Vibe, who was, as it happens, idling beside us in the "exit hopefuls" line. I hoped he had forgotten my unfortunate rudeness on the way into the game. Another driver encouraged me to follow through on my suggestion to cut the string barrier and take off across the field, assuring me he would certainly follow. I could envision doing this, then falling back and letting the followers take the lead and the consequences. Suddenly our line began to move and kept moving until we were out the gate and onto the road and, surprisingly, motoring rather expeditiously out of the area. I did, however, feel a pang of what might have been guilt, but somehow came out as glee, when I looked back across the field towards whence we had come and there still sat the ugly orange Vibe. As I recall, it is said that retribution belongeth to the Lord, (or something similar) and I'll be doing heavy penance for a time until this injustice has faded from memory or been repaid by my future good deeds.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Of course, I'm not complaining

But today has been as miserable a day in the desert as I would ever expect. Dark rolling clouds dumping heavy rain followed by gusty cold winds - I might as well be home in Minnesota. In fact I soon will be.

Yesterday, my cousin and I attended a spring training game between the Chicago Cubs and the Oakland A's. The game began with a rendition of the Star Spangled Banner that was breathtaking - sung by a girl who could not have been more than five or six years' old. Singing A Capella in perfect tune, she added an awesome octave jump on the word "free" that brought a gasp from audience, including me. As I recall, her name was something like Athena Cleeve, but don't quote me on that.

The 7th Inning stretch produced a crowd of loud Cubs fans singing "root, root, root for the 'Cubbies'" - Oakland was the home team, and the fans could just as well have sung "rout, rout, rout for the home team", as that is what the Cubbies did. We left in the middle of the 8th Inning with the score at 10 to 1 for Chicago. As we walked to the car, someone from the A's hit a two run homer, but it was still a rout.

Cloudy day with a chilly breeze, but the rain held off until later out of consideration, I'm sure, for my cousin from Cedar Rapids. A cool day, with a chilly breeze, a somewhat ominous precursor to the Twins playing in April and September at our new outdoor field. Baseball as it was meant to be played in all kinds of weather. Actually, I think I won't hurry to go "out to the ball game" in Minnesota. But I am happy to be hurrying home soon nevertheless.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

My Himalayan Salt Lamp

It emits a pleasant glow and is an interesting gadget to talk about. Of course, I didn't believe it would remove all dust and pollutants and alleviate allergies, asthma, etc. Nor is it credible that it would boost my immune system, speed the heeling of my wounds, increase my alertness, improve my sleep and cognitive abilities or help reduce my anxiety. All those supposed benefits were clearly exaggerations or, more credibly, total fantasy.

Still, one can't rule out the possibilities until one tries it out. Thus, the first night it glowed pleasantly in my bedroom all night long, and I slept peacefully, looking forward to a morning when I would be transformed from groggy old lady to alert, productive and highly focused old lady. Morning arrived, and there was no perceptible improvement in any of these areas.

Within a short time after retiring the next night to my room full of negative ions, I developed a stomach ache, which by midnight evolved into a solid bout of stomach flu. Afraid these lamp ions might have been a bit too negative, I turned off my new salt lamp and slept the better part of the next day and night with whatever positive or neutral ions might yet remain. Sleep, as we know, has great restorative powers, even in an atmosphere of positive ions.

People who have heretofore respected my level of common sense and intelligence are, I'm sure, asking themselves, "What was she thinking?" Actually, I thought it would be a good joke, which in fact it is. Now that I've tested it, I have thought it would be sensible not to tell anyone about it. Ridicule is such a hurtful thing. Yet, my innate habit of candor and openness has prevailed.

Now you realize the lengths to which I will go to have something to write on my blog. I don't recommend that you rush out and buy one for yourself. Perhaps, that goes without saying.