Wednesday, September 30, 2009

asshat of the day: National Review’s John Derbyshire

When you think the congenitally stupid nostalgia these people indulge in couldn't be any more ... well, stupid, there's this:

DERBYSHIRE: Among the hopes that I do not realistically nurse is the hope that female suffrage will be repealed. But I’ll say this – if it were to be, I wouldn’t lose a minute’s sleep.
COLMES: We’d be a better country if women didn’t vote?
DERBYSHIRE: Probably. Don’t you think so?
COLMES: No, I do not think so whatsoever.
DERBYSHIRE: Come on Alan. Come clean here [laughing].
COLMES: We would be a better country? John Derbyshire making the statement, we would be a better country if women did not vote.
DERBYSHIRE: Yeah, probably.

In addition to repealing women's suffrage, he wants to get rid of the Civil Rights Act because, well, you can't force people to be good. (So, let's just indulge everyone's self-interest and see what kind of country we have then, right? Frakking idiot.)

What year do these people want to live in? Someone should ask them.

And they'd probably say the 18th or early 19th century.

Think Progress » National Review’s John Derbyshire: Women Should Not Have The Right To Vote:

Monday, September 28, 2009

pork belly for everyone

what an exhausting weekend. (oh, listen to me complain about all the fun i had.) so here's a list instead of a perfectly tuned out post:

1. i keep walking past the card from M- and opening it to hear it blare 'Brick House' and i can't stop giggling. (he wrote inside that he hoped he'd be with me for all the rest of my birthdays and every time i read it, my underarms itch a little.)

2. if you're in chicago, you really need to eat at Perennial. order the pork belly. or the halibut. you must.

3. for a woman w/o cable or the intewebs, is getting a wii really that prudent? (even though said woman is now hooked on wii bowling? and loves sweating during the Super Slice? maybe a Wii Fit?)

4. it's scary how well my friends know me. how did they know that the perfect topper for my cake would be a teeny microwave with some scorched panties inside?

5. birthday resolution #1: this is the year i will rework my tattoo.

6. birthday resolution #2: this is the year i will (cough) get my drivers license.

7. birthday resolution #3: this is the year i will really, really eat better and exercise more. really.

8. i think i have the nicest AND dirtiest boyfriend ever. i mean, DIRTY. let your imaginations run amok. that's all i'm saying.

9. the art is beautiful.

10. i need a new couch.

Friday, September 25, 2009

40 is cool

the cool things that have happened to me on my birthday, so far:

M- sent me a Song of the Day just for me! (The Best of Altered Images, 'Happy Birthday')
XRoomie sent me a few JibJab cards featuring my face that are preventing me from working.
FB friends have covered my Wall with well-wishes.
My coworkers are doing Indian lunch with me.
I paid a couple of bills.
M- said my present arrived and he needs to wrap it. (See? No ring!)

And my dad said that he's changed his mind about the whole Israel-Palestine thing. (My dad is thisclose to becoming a radical in his later age.)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

NewGuy or...NewMan?

The other night, the young kids next door decided it was time to rehash all their roommate issues at 5 am. My first-floor bedroom window was open to let in the heavy late summer air so it was as if the two of them were standing at the foot of my bed arguing about who was going to be the one to move out.

Next to me, M- turned from his back to his front. He put the pillow over his head. He snorted. He grumbled. I rubbed his back, drifting in and out of my own dream state. I wished that a flaming meteorite would land on these kids and incinerate them both.

M- got up, climbed over me, shuffled into the living room. For a minute, I thought he was going to charge outside in his underwear and yell at the kids. But he came back with a glass of water, drank some, handed it to me, went back into the kitchen and came back.

The arguing continued and it was clear that our sleep was irrevocably broken. I could tell the sky was going to lighten soon. We'd both have to go to work. I tossed. M- tossed.

Then M- sat up, wrenched off the comforter and boomed out the window in his Chicago guy voice, 'Take it inside or we're calling the police!'

Silence. A screen door slammed. Silence.

'Thanks, sweetie,' I mumbled, patting his arm as he got back in bed. Grumbling, he pulled me close and said, 'Well, now I can't go back to sleep.' And we waited for 6.15 am (when he had to leave) and spent the dawn talking and complaining about how frakking rude 20-somethings are in this neighborhood.

At the door, he said he appreciated how I didn't get mad at him for yelling out the window.

'Why would I get mad at you for yelling at them? I call the cops on those damn kids all the time.'
'Just...thanks for letting me take care of that.'
'Uh, ok.'

I get the feeling that these things are important to him - taking care of things, being the Guy. Or is it being the Man? I don't know.

According to this Modern Love, M- looks like a Guy but acts like a Man. Or is it the other way around?
Because it's all over the place.

Modern Love - Forget the Men. Pick a Guy. -

my friends are silly

last night:

T- : so what if M- proposes over dinner on Friday?
Ding: what??
XRoomie: come on. you know there's a possibility.
Ding: no way. i already know what he's getting me. art.

T- : really?
Ding: yeah. i mentioned i liked this guy at the craft fair, he asked for his website and later he mentioned that he ordered something for me online. so it's art.
XRoomie: you are so bad at reading these things. reading everything.
Ding: he's not going to propose. it's - what - month #5, 6? don't be crazy.

XRoomie: what are you going to do if he does? you'll have to tell him to back off.
Ding: SIGH. he's NOT going to propose! he's getting me art for my birthday! hiroshi akiyama!
T- : what if he gives you a promise ring.
Ding: i'm going home.

We are in our blasted 40s (or at least late 30s) but you wouldn't think it to hear us. If folks want to see a ring, they better look in H-'s direction.

But to clear the air, how do I know M- won't suddenly go insane and pull a Bill the Vampire on Friday over dinner at Perennial?

Because he's not that type of guy. He'd want to do things traditionally: meet the family, ask permission. We haven't even exchanged keys (though that, lately, has crept into conversation); we don't even have personal drawers or closet space at the other person's house (though he left a white t-shirt the other day and where am I supposed to put that?)

Maybe this is something my friends haven't considered, but we've actually talked about this. We're not at the ring-popping stage. Saying 'Love you!' at the end of phone conversations? Sure. Ring-popping? No.

If romantic comedies are useful, they provide a handy guide to relationship progression. (Just think of every montage in every movie you've ever seen.) There's the shopping together, cooking together, hanging out with each others' friends, long walks through trees, the weekend away, the road trip, the real vacation together, the visit to the family, the holidays with the family, the crisis, the big fight, the big reconciliation, THEN the velvet box comes out.

See? We're not even close to that.

(However, we are now publicly 'out' as a couple on Facebook. We are no longer 'dating.' We are in a 'relationship.' I guess movies haven't caught up to that, yet.)

Has a corner been turned? Yes. Things have settled into...something and it feels nice. I like it. I'm struggling with my schedule (and he gets that) but, so far, what's not to enjoy about this? I really don't need the specter of some bullshit, hetero-coercive ring messing up my head.

Whatever. He's getting me art for my birthday.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

um, frak YOU, lane bryant!

dear lord,
thank you for my blog friend Sid who posted this on her blog which led to me seeing it and which will become my future destination for plushy girl fabulosity.


All hail, Igigi.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I'm taking a break from some painful work writing so indulge me an M- story.

He and I spent the entire Labor Day weekend together while I house-sat for a couple I know. It was like a mini-test. Could I spend a whole freaking weekend with a guy and not want to run away?


I learned a few useful things. He loves grilling. He does not mind a little terrier sleeping on his head in bed. (If we lived in an alternate universe where children suddenly became part of the picture, I have a feeling he'd be the indulgent parent.) He will reluctantly leave my side to give a jump to a friend who's stranded on the side of the road at midnight. His desire to do things for me encompasses everything and will eventually exhaust him.

I also learned he thinks Vick's VapoRub can cure almost anything and he has no idea what 'expectorant' is.

We were both fighting off a cold/flu/whatever and I was having a devil of a time sleeping because I would be wracked with the kind of cough that's so hard, tears would pop out my eyes and I'd almost vomit. (Yeah, classy.) He was going to CVS to pick up some things for his upset stomach and asked if I needed anything.

'i need an expectorant or something.'
‘expectorant?? What are you expecting?’
‘it’s to help with my phlegm!’
‘expectorant. ha ha. that's what vick's is for. expectorant.’ And he walked off, shaking his head like, 'you crazy kid with your weird words.'

And, sure enough, when he came back, no Mucinex. But I slept that night smelling like menthol.

We’re not talking about some wacky sci fi invention like a molecular transporter, here; we’re talking about Mucinex. It’s prolly a sign of our book learning differences but that’s ok. I’m learning that when you care about someone, you learn to ignore things.
No, that’s not accurate. You don’t ignore it (you know it’s there) but you choose not to draw attention to it.

When you care about someone you learn discretion.

(and, yes. a growth area is definitely the 'listening' thing. it's uncanny how like my dad he is.)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

our current political moment is like a bad bible study flashback

For those of you who go to church, grew up in a fundamentalist church, or was dragged to an evangelical campus bible study group once (once is all it takes, frankly) then I want you to think of the WORST bible study group you ever encountered.

You know what I'm talking about. Maybe it was the lay leader. Maybe s/he chose an obscure passage from....crap. One of the little Old Testament books or, god forbid, Hebrews. And then this lay leader, who didn't go to seminary but sure had a lot of tabs in their bible, decided to do a little lay-exigesis.


Or maybe you were up really late one night and you stumbled upon the late night ramblings of Gene Scott's daughter, standing there, spitting out random Greek and Hebrew translations, making bizarre diagrams and then connecting all dots leading to the Rapture.

THAT is what this video triggers.

And it is what scares the CRAP out of me if 'their side' wins.

Monday, September 14, 2009

where cognitive dissonance rears its confused head

like every other morning, i'm watching GMA while i get dressed.
and, like every other morning, they are covering the latest happening in PObama's healthcare reform push. and, like every other morning, their coverage makes my head explode.

first, there's Stephanopoulous reviewing PObama's poll numbers; an ABC poll finds that folks are just about evenly split. 48% for; 48% against the way PObama has been handling this. (which i find a stupid question, anyway.) then george notices that the poll numbers get slightly worse when the dreaded Public Option is mentioned and that if PObama just dropped the Public Option then maybe his numbers would jump a couple of points, rightly or wrongly.

and this is when my head exploded.

rightly or wrongly?

why are we still acting like this healthcare reform fight is like who's running for senior class president in high school? rightly or wrongly, this isn't a popularity contest. rightly or wrongly, we seem to be in danger of caving into the demands of people whose demands have no bearing on reality or fact. rightly or wrongly, we are illogically ceding this fight to the really stupid masses who think that making their healthcare affordable will make their healthcare worse than it is now. rightly or wrongly, there is nothing worse than now.

i mean, rightly or wrongly, i CANNOT afford my healthcare.

rightly or wrongly, i have hobo mouth and will need an oral surgeon (who will be charging to my medical insurance) to extract two problematic teeth and, rightly or wrongly, the cost (nearly $6000) will almost certainly bankrupt me if i cannot think of some way to pay for it. rightly or wrongly, the bacterial infection in one tooth could spread if left untreated and could lead to nerve damage or worse.

you know, rightly or wrongly.

rightly or wrongly, without a public option, healthcare reform will be negligible.

Friday, September 11, 2009


Unmarried Women Hit Hard by Poverty

sometimes, being right is a burden.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

in the weeds

I am a Bruin from the early 90s. I went to UCLA at the apotheosis of Derrida, the battles for ethnic studies, Bloomian debates about the value of multiculturalism, the identity wars, the canon wars, and the LA Riots/Uprising.

Two events stood out for me during that time: my introduction to semiotics and becoming a AAP tutor for first generation students of color. (If there are old Bruins of color out there from the 90s, give a shout out if you were AAP, too.) The two events stand out because they reinforced each other.

I remember reading some text, about Saussure, explaining the signifier, the signified, the sign and how this can be a lens through which to create meaning, or interpret meaning, in the world and it was like that moment in The Matrix, when Neo could finally see the code running behind everything. It was the concept of systems of meaning, of 'hidden' ideologies and values that fascinated me. It was glorious play to break down the semiotic system of the Western, for instance; or to disassemble the semiotic system of a Vogue magazine. Lay over this a growing gendered and racial politicization through hanging out with feminist and proud brown undergrad and grad student tutors in AAP (who could even politicize math) and suddenly my way of looking at the world changed.

Like Paul on Damascus, my scales had fallen away.

There are no accidents, my reading taught me. There is no 'But, it's just a monkey!' Because the chain of signification doesn't end with the word or image 'monkey.' Every piece of the sign has its own signifier and signified, and these bits have cultural histories and meanings of their own. The words and images are fraught with ideological, culturally hegemonic meaning; for something to be without value or meaning, its conception would need never to happen.

It is sheer mental laziness that people cannot ask simple critical questions about what is going on around them:

What does this mean (both literally and ideologically?)
Where is this coming from?
What is the value system manifested by this event/image/language, etc.?
Where do I meet these values?
Where do these values come from? (what is the context?)
Who wants me to agree with these values and meanings?
Who benefits from my agreement?
Who doesn't?

From my Tweets, you can probably tell I've been taking a look at the Van Jones resignation and the rhetoric that led to his resignation.

What does this resignation mean? It means several things. It
means that we lost an important policy maker and progressive on the frontline of
green economies and policy; it means that it will be that much harder to bring
green economic empowerment to urban (i.e., of color) communities; it means that,
once again, a smart man was brought low (however temporarily) by mediocre minds
beneath him.

From the opposing side, it means that the Big Black Buck stereotype

It also means that the progressive movement is wearing a target on its

Where did this come from? It came from Glenn Beck who has lost all
his major advertising sponsors because of the petition campaign waged by
ColorofChange (of which Jones was a founder) in protest to his white supremacist
remarks about President Obama. He, and other conservative hosts, drew a
target on Jones and went for it.

What is being valued? In the action against Jones, racial
stereotypes, racialized anxiety about communists and militants and 'un-American'
behavior is in play. In the larger political drama, the values of the
status quo are firmly supported.

Where do I meet these values? They bother me, deeply. Beck's
campaign was as big an example of race-baiting that I've ever seen.

(Let's pause here: what distinguishes the campaign that ColorofChange
launched against Beck and the one Beck ran against Jones? Ideological
honesty. ColorofChange is an anti-racism and racial justice organization;
Beck's language was identified as supporting the ideas of white supremacy and
they petitioned sponsors to distance themselves. Were Beck's words white
supremacist? Yes. In contrast, Beck's campaign was fabricated out of whole cloth
- both the rationale for it and the claims made in it. Would he admit his attack was racially motivated? No. But it is, because no other explanation has merit.)

Where do these values come from? They come from long-standing white
supremacist history and practice of demonizing people of color who threaten the
perceived status quo or current power structure.

Who wants me to agree with these values? The side Beck fights
for. Those whose interests would not be met by a green economy benefitting
poor communities and communities of color. Those whose interests would not be met by a successful Obama administration.

Who benefits from my agreement? The side Beck fights for. Those
whose interests would not be met by a green economy benefitting poor communities
and communities of color. Those who have an interest in a failed Obama administration.

Who doesn't? Those outside the power structure Beck supports.
(meaning: the rest of us)

Systems are systems. But they aren't impersonal systems. They come from us and we, whether we're talking about race or gender or sexuality or class, have a choice to support the system, to critique the system and/or to dismantle it. (If that's even possible.)

The Van Jones action, and others planned by men like Dobbs, Beck and Limbaugh, has made me look closely at the continuing activities of the GOP and their operators against this administration. It's hard to find what's redeeming about them, anymore.

Do they really want to become (in the words of Tim Wise) the Afrikaner party of the United States? Do they want that? Do they really want to hang a sign on this country that says 'For Whites Only'?

Because if that's what they want, we should call it what it is.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

people are freaking idjits

Below, the evil, propagandizing speech Pres. Obama will use to bring your children to the dark side of...higher test scores and matriculation (if someone could pull out the evil bits and show them to me, that would be great):

Prepared Remarks of President Barack Obama
Back to School Event
Arlington, VirginiaSeptember 8, 2009

The President: Hello everyone – how’s everybody doing today? I’m here with students at Wakefield High School in Arlington, Virginia. And we’ve got students tuning in from all across America, kindergarten through twelfth grade. I’m glad you all could join us today.

I know that for many of you, today is the first day of school. And for those of you in kindergarten, or starting middle or high school, it’s your first day in a new school, so it’s understandable if you’re a little nervous. I imagine there are some seniors out there who are feeling pretty good right now, with just one more year to go. And no matter what grade you’re in, some of you are probably wishing it were still summer, and you could’ve stayed in bed just a little longer this morning.

I know that feeling. When I was young, my family lived in Indonesia for a few years, and my mother didn’t have the money to send me where all the American kids went to school. So she decided to teach me extra lessons herself, Monday through Friday – at 4:30 in the morning.

Now I wasn’t too happy about getting up that early. A lot of times, I’d fall asleep right there at the kitchen table. But whenever I’d complain, my mother would just give me one of those looks and say, "This is no picnic for me either, buster."

So I know some of you are still adjusting to being back at school. But I’m here today because I have something important to discuss with you. I’m here because I want to talk with you about your education and what’s expected of all of you in this new school year.

Now I’ve given a lot of speeches about education. And I’ve talked a lot about responsibility.
I’ve talked about your teachers’ responsibility for inspiring you, and pushing you to learn.
I’ve talked about your parents’ responsibility for making sure you stay on track, and get your homework done, and don’t spend every waking hour in front of the TV or with that Xbox.

I’ve talked a lot about your government’s responsibility for setting high standards, supporting teachers and principals, and turning around schools that aren’t working where students aren’t getting the opportunities they deserve.

But at the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities. Unless you show up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed.

And that’s what I want to focus on today: the responsibility each of you has for your education. I want to start with the responsibility you have to yourself.

Every single one of you has something you’re good at. Every single one of you has something to offer. And you have a responsibility to yourself to discover what that is. That’s the opportunity an education can provide.

Maybe you could be a good writer – maybe even good enough to write a book or articles in a newspaper – but you might not know it until you write a paper for your English class. Maybe you could be an innovator or an inventor – maybe even good enough to come up with the next iPhone or a new medicine or vaccine – but you might not know it until you do a project for your science class. Maybe you could be a mayor or a Senator or a Supreme Court Justice, but you might not know that until you join student government or the debate team.

And no matter what you want to do with your life – I guarantee that you’ll need an education to do it. You want to be a doctor, or a teacher, or a police officer? You want to be a nurse or an architect, a lawyer or a member of our military? You’re going to need a good education for every single one of those careers. You can’t drop out of school and just drop into a good job. You’ve got to work for it and train for it and learn for it.

And this isn’t just important for your own life and your own future. What you make of your education will decide nothing less than the future of this country. What you’re learning in school today will determine whether we as a nation can meet our greatest challenges in the future.

You’ll need the knowledge and problem-solving skills you learn in science and math to cure diseases like cancer and AIDS, and to develop new energy technologies and protect our environment. You’ll need the insights and critical thinking skills you gain in history and social studies to fight poverty and homelessness, crime and discrimination, and make our nation more fair and more free. You’ll need the creativity and ingenuity you develop in all your classes to build new companies that will create new jobs and boost our economy.

We need every single one of you to develop your talents, skills and intellect so you can help solve our most difficult problems. If you don’t do that – if you quit on school – you’re not just quitting on yourself, you’re quitting on your country.

Now I know it’s not always easy to do well in school. I know a lot of you have challenges in your lives right now that can make it hard to focus on your schoolwork.

I get it. I know what that’s like. My father left my family when I was two years old, and I was raised by a single mother who struggled at times to pay the bills and wasn’t always able to give us things the other kids had. There were times when I missed having a father in my life. There were times when I was lonely and felt like I didn’t fit in.

So I wasn’t always as focused as I should have been. I did some things I’m not proud of, and got in more trouble than I should have. And my life could have easily taken a turn for the worse.
But I was fortunate. I got a lot of second chances and had the opportunity to go to college, and law school, and follow my dreams. My wife, our First Lady Michelle Obama, has a similar story. Neither of her parents had gone to college, and they didn’t have much. But they worked hard, and she worked hard, so that she could go to the best schools in this country.

Some of you might not have those advantages. Maybe you don’t have adults in your life who give you the support that you need. Maybe someone in your family has lost their job, and there’s not enough money to go around. Maybe you live in a neighborhood where you don’t feel safe, or have friends who are pressuring you to do things you know aren’t right.

But at the end of the day, the circumstances of your life – what you look like, where you come from, how much money you have, what you’ve got going on at home – that’s no excuse for neglecting your homework or having a bad attitude. That’s no excuse for talking back to your teacher, or cutting class, or dropping out of school. That’s no excuse for not trying.

Where you are right now doesn’t have to determine where you’ll end up. No one’s written your destiny for you. Here in America, you write your own destiny. You make your own future.

That’s what young people like you are doing every day, all across America.

Young people like Jazmin Perez, from Roma, Texas. Jazmin didn’t speak English when she first started school. Hardly anyone in her hometown went to college, and neither of her parents had gone either. But she worked hard, earned good grades, got a scholarship to Brown University, and is now in graduate school, studying public health, on her way to being Dr. Jazmin Perez.

I’m thinking about Andoni Schultz, from Los Altos, California, who’s fought brain cancer since he was three. He’s endured all sorts of treatments and surgeries, one of which affected his memory, so it took him much longer – hundreds of extra hours – to do his schoolwork. But he never fell behind, and he’s headed to college this fall.

And then there’s Shantell Steve, from my hometown of Chicago, Illinois. Even when bouncing from foster home to foster home in the toughest neighborhoods, she managed to get a job at a local health center; start a program to keep young people out of gangs; and she’s on track to graduate high school with honors and go on to college.

Jazmin, Andoni and Shantell aren’t any different from any of you. They faced challenges in their lives just like you do. But they refused to give up. They chose to take responsibility for their education and set goals for themselves. And I expect all of you to do the same.

That’s why today, I’m calling on each of you to set your own goals for your education – and to do everything you can to meet them. Your goal can be something as simple as doing all your homework, paying attention in class, or spending time each day reading a book. Maybe you’ll decide to get involved in an extracurricular activity, or volunteer in your community. Maybe you’ll decide to stand up for kids who are being teased or bullied because of who they are or how they look, because you believe, like I do, that all kids deserve a safe environment to study and learn. Maybe you’ll decide to take better care of yourself so you can be more ready to learn. And along those lines, I hope you’ll all wash your hands a lot, and stay home from school when you don’t feel well, so we can keep people from getting the flu this fall and winter.

Whatever you resolve to do, I want you to commit to it. I want you to really work at it.

I know that sometimes, you get the sense from TV that you can be rich and successful without any hard work -- that your ticket to success is through rapping or basketball or being a reality TV star, when chances are, you’re not going to be any of those things.

But the truth is, being successful is hard. You won’t love every subject you study. You won’t click with every teacher. Not every homework assignment will seem completely relevant to your life right this minute. And you won’t necessarily succeed at everything the first time you try.

That’s OK. Some of the most successful people in the world are the ones who’ve had the most failures. JK Rowling’s first Harry Potter book was rejected twelve times before it was finally published. Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team, and he lost hundreds of games and missed thousands of shots during his career. But he once said, "I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed."

These people succeeded because they understand that you can’t let your failures define you – you have to let them teach you. You have to let them show you what to do differently next time. If you get in trouble, that doesn’t mean you’re a troublemaker, it means you need to try harder to behave. If you get a bad grade, that doesn’t mean you’re stupid, it just means you need to spend more time studying.

No one’s born being good at things, you become good at things through hard work. You’re not a varsity athlete the first time you play a new sport. You don’t hit every note the first time you sing a song. You’ve got to practice. It’s the same with your schoolwork. You might have to do a math problem a few times before you get it right, or read something a few times before you understand it, or do a few drafts of a paper before it’s good enough to hand in.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. I do that every day. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength. It shows you have the courage to admit when you don’t know something, and to learn something new. So find an adult you trust – a parent, grandparent or teacher; a coach or counselor – and ask them to help you stay on track to meet your goals.
And even when you’re struggling, even when you’re discouraged, and you feel like other people have given up on you – don’t ever give up on yourself. Because when you give up on yourself, you give up on your country.

The story of America isn’t about people who quit when things got tough. It’s about people who kept going, who tried harder, who loved their country too much to do anything less than their best.
It’s the story of students who sat where you sit 250 years ago, and went on to wage a revolution and found this nation. Students who sat where you sit 75 years ago who overcame a Depression and won a world war; who fought for civil rights and put a man on the moon. Students who sat where you sit 20 years ago who founded Google, Twitter and Facebook and changed the way we communicate with each other.
So today, I want to ask you, what’s your contribution going to be? What problems are you going to solve? What discoveries will you make? What will a president who comes here in twenty or fifty or one hundred years say about what all of you did for this country?

Your families, your teachers, and I are doing everything we can to make sure you have the education you need to answer these questions. I’m working hard to fix up your classrooms and get you the books, equipment and computers you need to learn. But you’ve got to do your part too. So I expect you to get serious this year. I expect you to put your best effort into everything you do. I expect great things from each of you. So don’t let us down – don’t let your family or your country or yourself down. Make us all proud. I know you can do it.

Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

girlfriends can find anything

XRoomie: Because I am utterly bored, I have been surfing MSN, which led me to surfing the recommended sponsor website—a dating sites for geeks, pet lovers, intellectuals. Fascinating. Anyhoo, M-'s is still up there from ages ago. I’m like “dude, ‘X’ looks like M-." And NO, I did not search for him. Of COURSE he’s heard of this site. Of course. Fabulous.

Ding: Wow. Of course. And you didn’t send me the link?? Pshh.
XRoomie: (sending me the link) You’re weird about shit. Didn’t want to seem exploitative. And if he’s 5’7,” then I weigh 140.

Ding: Now, now. We all have our blindnesses. Wow. I’m afraid to explore that site more.
XRoomie: Did you notice most of their pics were taken on a webcam. Heh.
Ding: I wonder when the most appropriate time is to tease him about this. I mean, are we there yet?

XRoomie: Get over it! 'Are you there, yet?' Lady, he said he loves you! You spend at least 3 days of the week together! You're there! You're there! (mumbling)
Ding: You may have a point.
XRoomie: Gah.