Thursday, December 27, 2007

The CrimiNoles do it again

As a FANatic of college football, in general, and the University of Florida, specifically, the Florida State University is way down on my list of loveable teams. When friends have told me that I am to NEVER cheer against an in-state team, I say, "Eff You." I am so sick and twisted that there are very few things that tickle me more than to see FSU players and coaches get themselves in a little trouble. (That does not count illness or injury, that whole Sexton, lyme disease, poor kid thought he was Jesus was heart-breaking). So, it was with a tremendous amount of glee that I saw the news story that 36 FSU players would not be attending the Music City Bowl. There are numerous reasons listed, but the main one is cheating. On an exam for an online class. In Art History. How stupid could you be?

It never even crossed my mind that FSU would beat Kentucky in this bowl game. Kentucky has one of the best teams in the history of that school (during the last 20 years anyway) and FSU, well, they stink. But I am not even sure they will SCORE on the Wildcats. And the game should be over in the first half, because they have no replacements if their starters get tired.

This is a team who went from mediocrity to National Champions (much like my beloved Gators) in the 90's. The new milleniumm, however, has not been great for the 'Noles and it does not appear to be getting better. Is it possible that it is time for Bobby Bowden to retire? Does 2 pretty bad seasons in a row mean that he has lost it? Is this a younger man's game? (Some say yes, some say no.)

I certainly don't have the answers. All I know, for sure, is that FSU has managed to embarrass itself once again. And I am tickled by that. Tickled blue & orange.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Apparently, I Rock!

Your Blogging Type Is Thoughtful and Considerate
You're a well liked, though underrated, blogger.You have a heart of gold, and are likely to blog for a cause.You're a peaceful blogger - no drama for you!A good listener and friend, you tend to leave thoughtful comments for others.

Book Review: Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials"

Before I write on this book, I need to explain a few things about myself.

#1, The fastest way to get me to do something is to tell me not to. I am contrary that way. Unless I can see how it will cause pain to me or anyone else, I am most likely not going to take your advice. So when I recieved an Email (at work, no less) telling me to help protect the children by NOT taking them to see "The Golden Compass," of course, I was intrigued. I had never heard of the books until that Email and am not even sure I had seen any movie trailers. Then I found the entire trilogy for a measly $12.97, well, really, what choice did I have but to buy it and read it?

#2, I am an avid reader. I do not go anywhere without a book in my hands. I have been that way as far back as I can remember. Sometimes I think that is a commentary on my inability to be alone with my thoughts, because I am never alone if I have another world to sink into, but that is an entirely different post. Having said that, please understand, that I LIKE pulp fiction. Mindless and entertaining is what I look for in most of the books I read no matter which genre they can be filed under. While I do read biographies, autobiographies, histories and true crime, I have to be in a certain mood to do so. I read to be entertained, not depressed, and I learned a long time ago to stay away from any book with a big O in the corner.

#3, I don't get the "underlying" meaning in most literature. I read the words and assume (a lot of times wrongly) that the author was trying to say exactly what he/she said. In a recent American Lit class, I spoke very little during class discussion. I sat quietly and listened to the thoughts and feelings of others and then decided if I agreed with them or not, and managed to get an A that way. But, while actually reading the short story or novella, all I got was the words/the story/ the overlaying meaning (if that makes sense at all). Maybe that makes me a moron, but that is the way I was built.

Having said all of that, let me first state that any child who reads "His Dark Materials" is a very impressive child indeed. This was not an easy read. I spent the entire first book "The Golden Compass" fairly lost and confused. It wasn't until the first couple of chapters of "The Subtle Knife" that it all came together for me. I experienced that lovely hook of a great and interesting book, that "Ah-ha!" and fell completely into the world inhabited by Will. Of course, Will's world was my world and not confusing at all and when he wandered into another world, well, that was interesting, powerful and wonderful.

According to Snopes, Philip Pullman is an atheist, but his official website does not say that. And I did not get any sense of atheism out of this trilogy. The entire set concerns the Authority (God, YahWah, a Higher Being, etc) and I don't know how a true atheist could have written this compelling story of what is going on in Heaven and on Earth. Or, at least, I don't know why an atheist would want to .

The books were wordy (is that a word?) and I don't know how to explain what I mean by that. It seems to me that a good editor would have cut the couple hundred pages of extraneous B.S. that bored me and did not seem to bring anything to the story. The stories themselves, however, were so full of love and compassion and hope that I do not even have the words to express how awesome that was. By the end I truly cared for each of the characters and hoped for the best out of life for them. And I don't want to give away any of the story to anyone reading it, but I do have to say that no one kills God. No one, no two, no group. If you haven't heard that, then I apologize for bringing it up, but DSD's X has told the little man that she will not take him to see the movie because God is killed in it. (This is the woman who takes him to see almost every movie available, including movies rated R, and has for years. He is only just 13 now!). I read the whole 3rd book waiting for this HUGE apocolyptic battle.. and it just didn't happen.

The books are very spiritual (did I say that already) and VERY anti-religion. Let me ensure you understand, NOT anti-God, but anti-religion. Against the Baptists, the Methodists, the Catholics, every other Protestant church and Judaism. That may offend some, but since I believe most religions are pure BS, it didn't bother me a bit.

To sum it up, I enjoyed the books and am glad I read them, although it wasn't the easiest trilogy I have ever read. I would certainly encourage any parent considering allowing their child to read them to read them first to ensure that they don't conflict with the way you are raising your child. I also request that those who HAVE NOT read the book, keep your damned mouth shut, you don't know what you are talking about. But that is wishful thinking I know.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Feeling Better, but Guilty

DSD and I went grocery shopping yesterday and spent a small fortune. I was shocked when we got home to realize that the money we spent was not on meat (the most expensive portion of our grocery bill normally), but on drugs! Legal, over-the-counter drugs, and, yet, drugs. I needed an expectorant to move this crud, plus Nyquil gel caps (generic version) plus he is paranoid about catching this mess, so he bought Nyquil liquid (2 bottles). I slept beautifully last night thanks to the generic Nyquil and barely coughed all day today thanks to the non-generic Mucinex. I have never been one to live on pharmacueticals, but at this point, I will do whatever is necessary to feel human. (I did promise that if I spent another night like Saturday night, I will go to the doctor. I work with real medical doctors and I have had them advise me, and look in my ears to ensure that I do not have an infection, but that is not good enough for DSD. Hopefully it does not come to that).


The guilt I am feeling is because my son is miserable at his father's. I do not want my son to be miserable EVER, but especially at Christmas. However, there is a part of me (not, necessarily, a tiny part) that does not want him to have a better time at his dad's than he would have here with me, DSD and the rest of the family. He has been there for 8 days and is extremely ready to come home and that makes me happy... and yet guilty.


To all of Blogland:
Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays
Hope you enjoy your day off.
Whichever pertains to you and your beliefs.


I got my parents the board game "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader" for Christmas". I am hoping we will have time to play tomorrow and that I make it to, at least, 2nd grade.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

I am Sick and Tired...

Of being sick and tired!

I think I managed to pick something up during the Boston trip. I am not OCD about germs, normally, but when I travel, I really am. I washed my hands so many times I am shocked they didn't crack from the cold and soap. Sadly, though, it didn't help. Who knows what I picked up or where. All I know is that I have been under the weather for over 2 weeks now. I think I slept a total of 4 hours last night because I was coughing so much (and out of Nyquil). I think I just get to let this run it course, but I am tired, coughing, tired and fairly miserable. Hopefully, I will feel better soon!


On a side note, I did talk to someone at the local watering hole about the child drinking on premises. The person I talked to tends bar on Fridays, but is assistant manager. She was completely offended that there was the possibility of an underage drinker consuming bar alcohol there. She saw the girl drinking from the styrofoam cup and thought they were bringing it in. That is still unaccepatable in my book, but this person was not as angry about that. She vowed to get to the bottom of it and swore there would be no more of it in the future.


My son is at his father's for the holidays. He left last Sunday and tonight is the first time I have really talked to him since he left. He is not having a good time. He, too, is sick and tired, but only of the fact that his father and stepmother are morons (his words, not mine). He is a very compasionate person and does not understand the fact that his dad talks about Christianity and clearly doesn't like certain groups of people. I wish I had known this last night, I would have driven to pick him up today. (He is about 6 hours away.) Hey, Pete, if you are paying attention out there in Blogland, if you could bring him home (he is in your neck of the woods), I would be happy to put you up and feed you Christmas dinner!

I am working on Christmas Eve, as most people do. I may have another post up between now and Christmas, but if I don't, I hope all of you have a wonderful day!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Don't I Have a Responsibility?

Let me see if I can get this all down in something resembling a coherant thought.

DSD and I (mostly him) have a friend, although he isn't really MY friend, I just kind of put up with him. Does that make any sense at all? We don't even really have the same circle of friends, except this guy, whom we will call Brad, because that is his name, likes to drink at the same place we do. I am not positive how long he has been drinking there; it feels like forever. For a time, I thought he was just a smartass, and since I, too, have a certain smartassishness about me, he was, sort of, amusing. I would say horrible things to him and he would say horrible things to me and this was fun. (Yes, in my family that was always considered a good time).

Then, several months ago now, he started flirting with a girl who worked at this bar/restaurant. She was a hostess. A 17 year old, will be 18 soon, supposedly graduating high school in December (yes, this week) hostess. He is a past 35 year old single father of a 15 or 16 year old son with a decent salary and plenty of toys. (Boats, jeeps, etc). He kept saying (this was some time ago) that he was bringing this girl to my wedding, because she would be 18 then. (She turned 18 nine days before the wedding.) I, of course, laughed aloud. What would a past 35 year old man see in such a child? What would they talk about? And, he is such a FUNNY guy! And, I told DSD, I bet he is going to bring Jen (an ex-gf whom I adored) and this whole "I am almost a pedophile" is just a joke! HA.

Or, I am a complete and total moron. Hmmmm, let's not vote on this one, ok?

Apparently he is NOT a funny guy. Apparently he has the maturity of a 10 year old and all the smartass comments we were exchanging was his way of communicating. And he did bring this CHILD to my wedding. Where he provided her with alcohol, although I did not know about this until later.

So, to make a long post even longer, last Friday DSD and I were having a lovely alcoholic beverage at ye olde watering hole and Brad arrived with Tootsie (not her real name!). I wasn't paying a lot of attention, but did notice that Brad received a glass of wine and a beer. He said that the wine was for him. The bartender said she thought the wine was for Tootsie and the beer was for him; so what did Tootsie want? I said, "She wants a soda; she is 18 years old," and went about my business. Later, I noticed that she was drinking from a styrofoam cup with a lid and a straw. This is not a styrofoam kind of place, they use real utensils there and the plates are not thrown away after dining is complete. So, of course, I ASSUME she is consuming alcohol. And it was my plan to go this afternoon for a drink (a sacrifice, because I normally go on Friday) and, well, to be blunt, rat out the bartender that was serving her.

Just for the record I have now corresponded with a fellow consumer of alchoholic beverage who works with Brad and she says Tootsie was a wee bit sickly later in the evening ('worshiping the porcelain god').

My problem.. yes, I did work my way around to it.. is that DSD thinks I am being a trouble-maker. Stirring the pot, causing hate and discontent. And, maybe, I am. Frankly the entire relationship creeps me out. I have an 18 year old son and I would kill a 35 year old woman who tried to 'date' him. Can't imagine how parents of girls feel.

So, what would YOU do?

Friday, December 14, 2007

Help hold contractors accountable

Jamie Leigh Jones was working in Iraq for a subsidiary of Halliburton when she was drugged and brutally gang-raped by several coworkers.For the last two years, she's been asking the US government to hold the perpetrators accountable, but the men who raped her may never be brought to justice because Halliburton and other contractors in Iraq aren't subject to US or Iraqi laws.

I just signed a petition urging Congress to investigate the rape of Jamie Leigh Jones, hold those involved accountable, and bring US contractors under the jurisdiction of US law. Can you join me at the link below?


Thursday, December 13, 2007

An Open Letter to My Representative

Mr. Boyd,
I am frankly appalled that you (and all of the House of Representatives) wasted MY time and MY tax dollars debating and voting on a bill that recognizes and respects Christians and Christianity. Isn't that why we have a Constitution and a Bill of Rights? Doesn't this completely go against the Bill of Rights? What happened to "the government shall not make or establish a religion?" Isn't that what you just did? And then you voted AYE to postpone consideration of the veto message: H R 3963 Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act. So let's acknowledge Christianity but leave the children without healthcare? Who exactly are you supposed to be representing again? Because you are NOT representing me.
Thank you,
[name removed]
Registered Democrat

Yes, this is the letter I sent to my representative. What a waste of time and money. If you don't know what I am talking about, you can read about it here and here. You can find out how your Rep voted here. Please write your representative and tell them that you are appalled or, if by some luck, your rep voted Nay or abstained, please congratulate them on a job well done.

Please excuse me now, I have to go hang my head in shame!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

By the way..

I am home safe and sound from Boston. It was a great trip, although there was a lot more conference than I wanted there to be. I learned a lot (and have a lot of work to do to ensure that we are doing things correctly at work), but so much conference cut into my sight-seeing time. Bummer!

Here I am outside of Cheers for lunch on Sunday. Sadly, I had to go back to the conference, so I ate lunch there, but was unable to partake of the libations. :-(
Most of the sightseeing had to be squeezed in during lunch (it gets dark early in December), but, aside from Cheers, I managed Bunker's Hill and the Old North Church. I would love to go back in the summer when there is no threat of snow and the warmest day is above 40F. Especially now that I have figured out the subway system.
Maybe one day.
Thank you to everyone for the good wishes. I hope to catch up on all the blogs over the next few days!

The Legend Continues..

While little kids are wearing Superman pajamas, Superman is wearing Tim Tebow pajamas.

Tim Tebow sleeps with a night light, not because he is afraid of the dark, because the dark is afraid of Tim Tebow.

When Tim Tebow does push ups, he is not pushing himself up, he is pushing Earth down.

These are just a few of the Tebowisms that can be found running rampant in Email and throughout the internet. Here is a new one...

Tim Tebow is the first sophomore in the history of the award to win the Heisman Trophy.

Oh, that is not a Tebowism, that is a fact.

The kid who wasn't supposed to be born (the doctor advised his mother to have an abortion) who was born premature, who was home-schooled, who has a deep belief in Jesus Christ and who, allegedly, can not sing, has won the most prestigious award in college football in only his second season, his first as a starter. He says he will not leave early for the NFL. First, he has to move beyond the Heisman curse (does a Michigan team who lost to App St have a chance against this offense?) and then, Watch out! Watch out SEC! Watch out NCAA! Watch out world!

Congrats, Tim, you deserved this award and Gator Nation is happy to have you. We love you, too!