Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Saying Goodbye (and Good Riddance) to Hurricane Season

MSNBC has an interesting story on the 2005 Atlantic Hurricane Season - Historic hurricane season end. . .sort of

It has certainly been a bumpy ride this year. Thankfully we weren't really affected here in Troy, but it has been a memorable, and nerve racking year.
It has seen the most storms on record, beating the previous record of 21 named storms set in 1933. It has scored the most hurricanes at 13, beating the previous record of 12 set in 1969.

It has also seen the most Category 5 hurricanes, the top-ranked storms on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale of hurricane activity.

With TS Epsilon still brewing in the Atlantic (and not expected to make landfall), we can only hope that the season ends here. Let's hope next year is better, but I'm not holding my breath.

MSN Hotmail - Message from the Democrats

This morning I received an e-mail message from the Democratic Party (I'm voluntarily on their mailing list) about freshman Congresswoman Jean Schmidt and her comments on Democratic Congressman Jack Murtha. Apparently many Democratic supporter had suggested reprimanding Schmidt by putting up billboards in her home district. The Democrats liked the idea
From this day forward, the Democratic Party will commit to putting up a "Shame on You" billboard in the home district of any Republican who attacks a veteran's service in order to score political points.

The actual billboard for Schmidt is intended to read as follows:
The first billboard will go up near Jean Schmidt's district office in Portsmouth, Ohio. The message: "Shame on You, Jean Schmidt: Stop Attacking Veterans. Keep Your Eye on the Ball -- We Need a Real Plan for Iraq."

I really don't know if this is such a good idea. I know it's all politics, but, to me, it just seems like tit for tat: political posturing to attack political posturing. Obviously the people of her home district should know that she "had the audacity to call Jack Murtha a coward on the floor of the United States House of Representatives" if that is how it actually happened, but I'm not sure a smear campaign is really in the Democrats best interest. I just hope it doesn't back fire on us.

Update: If you like the idea, you can donate here (it also has some of the information I quote from the e-mail message).

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Being Thankful at Thanksgiving

Today is more than just a day to eat turkey and dressing, it is a day to think about the things we are thankful for. I often get depressed and think that there is nothing in my life that is worth being thankful for, but I know that is not really true. There are many things in my life that are wonderful and that I am lucky to have.

I'm thankful to have a wonderful husband who loves me and is always willing to put up with my mood swings and outbursts, and always tries to encourage me in everything I do.

I'm thankful that I have three terrific sons. At times, when they are driving me nuts, I may loose sight of just how wonderful they are, but when I think about the world that we live in today, I realize just how lucky I am and just how good they really are.

I'm also thankful for the love of my extended family. My parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and sister who are always willing to help me when I need them.

I'm thankful, too, for my friends. I may not have many, but the one's I have really care about me and I care about them, and that's the most important thing.

I love you all. Thanks for being there for me and for letting me be there for you. You're the best.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Favorite Quotes

Last FFM from Poliblog, which I never got around to over the weekend, was to name at least five lines from TV/Movies that you always find amusing–maybe not laugh-out-loud funny, but that always amuse you.

Here's my list (but I can't do the neat "below the fold" thingy):

1. "We were up to our elbows in your underwear drawer. It was like touching the Shroud of Turin"

2. "We thought you was a toad"

3. "Would you go to my front door, bend down, look through the letter box... and if you can see my pussy, would you drop a sardine on the mat?"

4. "We named the dog Indiana"

5. "Taking pictures of it and showing it to your mates? No, that's not normal!"

Now, where they are from:

1. The 1995 version of Sabrina. The Harrison Ford character has just found out that his secretary has packed an over night bag for him. The quote is the secretary's response.

2. O Brother Where Art Thou?. Scene when Delmar and Everett see Pete in the movie theater after Pete had been turned in to the police.

3. Are You Being Served? (British Comedy) Mrs. Slocombe asking her neighbor to feed her cat.

4. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Indiana's father explaining why he calls Indiana "Junior".

5. Red Dwarf (British Comedy) Kryton, who has temporarily become human, takes pictures of his newly aquired male anatomy and shows them to Lister, asking if it is normal.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Super Hero Quiz

You scored as Batman, the Dark Knight. As the Dark Knight of Gotham, Batman is a vigilante who deals out his own brand of justice to the criminals and corrupt of the city. He follows his own code and is often misunderstood. He has few friends or allies, but finds comfort in his cause.

Batman, the Dark Knight


Neo, the "One"


Lara Croft


Indiana Jones




The Terminator


William Wallace


Captain Jack Sparrow


El Zorro


The Amazing Spider-Man


James Bond, Agent 007


Which Action Hero Would You Be? v. 2.0
created with

Obviously Dr. Taylor has more of an affinity for gadgets than I do, but we are both predominantly Batman. How odd.

h/t: Poliblog

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Oddly Enough, This Song Reminds Me

The first time I heard the song Doesn't Remind Me by Audioslave, it reminded me of something. (Ironic isn't it?) Over the summer we took a trip north, through Tennessee and Virginia, to visit my mother-in-law in New Jersey. We went through the Shenandoah Valley and went up on the Blue Ridge Parkway for a while. While on the parkway, we stopped and walked on some trails. The kids were looking around and commenting on how the things they were seeing reminded them of things in the video games that they play. My husband commented on what a shame it was that the kids couldn't just enjoy the natural beauty around them without having it remind them of something imaginary and electronic. When I heard the Audioslave song later, it made me think about his comment and how nice it is, at times, to experience something that is truly new and doesn't remind you of anything else.

Also the last line of the song was particularly striking to me.
what's mine is ours
If it doesn't remind me of anything
It does seem true that it is hard to form a shared memory of something and make it really "ours" unless it is a new experience that doesn't hark back to a previous individual experience or memory that is shared with someone else.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Did Rick Berman Read Le Bon?

While working on my paper (comparing Le Bon's The Crowd to Rudé's The Crowd), a question came to mind. Did Rick Berman read Le Bon's The Crowd before writing Star Trek: First Contact? In The Crowd, Le Bon tells us that the crowd acts with one collective mind and is incapable of individual thought. Okay, that sounds a lot like the Borg to me. Then he tells us that the crowd must have a leader and that leader is often a member of the crowd. Sounds somewhat contradictory, but okay. Then Berman tells us that the Borg also has a leader that is a Borg (The Queen). Coincidence? I think not.

Well, maybe we met the Borg Queen before First Contact, but I must admit that I didn't watch TNG religiously.

Looking at Site Meter

Occasionally I take some time and look at site meter to see where my traffic is coming from. When Dr. Taylor is kind enough to give me a link from Poliblog my traffic increases considerably. I also get traffic from Alabama-Democrat, A Glass of Sheri, and Unlocked Wordhoard. Thanks guys, I really appreciate the links and the blogroll listings.

However, the majority of my traffic that comes from search engines seems to most go to one post called Hogeboom on Survivor. I watched the first episode of Survivor and thought it was interesting that a former Dallas Cowboy was now playing on Survivor. I wrote a quick entry about it on my blog, but considered not even posting it because I didn't feel like it said very much (because, of course, it didn't). I received so many hits because of it, I went back and updated it with a little more information. It's amazing what one quick post can do. So, anyway, I just feel like I should say a big "Thank You" to Gary Hogeboom for being on Survivor so that I could comment on it. Thanks Gary!

Friday, November 04, 2005

Am I An Average American?

Well, yep, I guess I probably am.

Today's Friday Fun Meme from Poliblog asks if you do the things that average Americans do and provides a list to go by. So here goes my addition to today's fun:

Eats peanut butter at least once a week (I don't but my husband and middle son do)
Prefers smooth peanut butter over chunky (most definitely)
Can name all Three Stooges (yep, even though I've never even really watched them)
Lives within a 20-minute drive of a Wal-Mart (what would Troy be without Wal-Mart?)
Eats at McDonald’s at least once a year (Closer to once a month!)
Takes a shower for approximately 10.4 minutes a day (Could be, I'm not sure how long I'm in the shower)
Never sings in the shower (I sing outside the shower often, but not in it)
Lives in a house, not an apartment or condominium. (House)
Has a home valued between $100,000 and $300,000 (I wish!)
Has fired a gun (yep, but it was probably over 15 years ago)
Is between 5 feet and 6 feet tall (5' 6")
Weighs 135 to 205 pounds (usually sometimes I drop below 135)
Is between the ages of 18 and 53 (34)
Believes gambling is an acceptable entertainment option (sure)
Grew up within 50 miles of current home (yep)

I would be hard for me to be more average. How sad.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

On Democracy and Political Issues

I have often wondered what would happen if this country were actually a democracy. We all hear the word democracy thrown about, but of course, we are not truly a democracy; we are a republic. The people vote for representatives to make laws and govern the nation on their behalf. So, what would happen if we were truly a democracy and people actually voted on the issue, not for politicians? It might be chaos, it might run smoothly, but apparently it would be more liberal than what we have right now. The Nation reports:
More than 30 percent of Americans happily answer to the appellation "conservative," while 18 percent call themselves "liberal." And yet when questioned by pollsters, a super-majority of more than 60 percent take positions liberal in everything but name. Indeed, on many if not most issues, Americans hold views well to the left of those espoused by almost any national Democratic politician.
I'm aware that The Nation is a liberal magazine, but they were not the ones conducting the poll. The poll was conducted by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press. It found that
65 percent of respondents said they favor providing health insurance to all Americans, even if it means raising taxes, and 86 percent said they favor raising the minimum wage. Seventy-seven percent said they believe the country "should do whatever it takes to protect the environment."
Interesting statistics for such a "red" nation. Maybe democracy is not such a bad idea after all.