Look, 51% of polled folks in California say they are against Same-Sex Marriage, 44% say they are FOR it, and the rest are indifferent.
I really don't believe it's that low for votes of support.
Who's being polled in California? Certainly not me, my friends, my family, my coworkers, or my blogging acquaintances. They must be polling older folks and people in Fresno. I think they are expressly avoiding SF and LA.
Anyway, I'm guessing the results are skewed by land line owners, since way too many of my friends have unlisted cell phones. We also all hang up when the familiar click of a sales/survey/telemarketer occurs. So. We are not being polled proper-like.
In any case, Bill Lockyer, our Attorney General, has very little power over this matter (and I think it's one of those "pick your battles" quandaries for him, otherwise he'd be trying harder, non?) He recently tried to go to the highest court in the state to "block" these marriages from happening. But the courts, being the bureaucratic nightmare that they are, have blown him off (because the justices are snooty enough to say "we only see the cases that have worked their ways up, f*ck you very much.")
However, I especially loved this little SSA comment from this article:
"In another development related to the weddings, the Social Security Administration has told its offices nationwide not to accept marriage certificates from San Francisco as proof of identification for newlyweds looking to make name changes on Social Security cards."
First of all, aren't you glad the DMV doesn't care what you call yourself? That's a-right-a, you can claim ANY name on your DMV records and license, and it is valid ID; all you do is list any names you've had a state license with (like listing your maiden name, or the year you went by "SunMoon Starrs".) Mindboggling simple, non? Plus, no one is actually allowed to require your Social Security Number/Card as "identification". Why, that would be illegal. Fancy schmancy.
And aren't you happy that if'n you ever get into a pickle with a basic CID, you can change your name for $150 bucks? So, that was a mightily powerless low blow from the SSA, again, f*ck you very much.
Thursday, February 26, 2004 All Gay, All The Time Okay, this is great.
And THIS is insanity. Why? Because what the hell were they thinking? If someone cuts a living baby out of a woman and the kid breathes before it is murdered, that is murder of a BORN BABY. Laci's baby had AIR in it's lungs, poor darling thing. It was a WANTED baby. What is to stop these idiots from amending this law to include abortions? Nothing, I say. It's ridiculous to have passed it. I wonder who was bought off, and who on earth thought this was a good idea.
If a pregnant woman is caused to lose a baby because she is murdered, then you know what? FOCUS ON HER MURDER. I mean, if the vessel is killed, the pregnancy does not continue, non? Doesn't it make more sense to protect WOMEN then? Adult, breathing, lovely, people that they are? Doesn't it make sense to make it a crime to attack a pregnant WOMAN, much less her wanted fetus that wouldn't survive in the first place if she was murdered?
This just fucking blows my mind:
"It passed 254-163 after the House rejected a Democratic-led alternative that would have increased penalties for attacks on pregnant women in which the fetus is injured or killed without conferring new rights on fetuses."
Why? Because abortion is being threatened. You don't reject strong laws for women unless you have an ulterior motive. Give me a fucking break.
Are they that stupid? Fuck this.
All I have to say is, Please Let The Senate be Sane. Please let them reject this horrendously stupid law.
Okay, nothing makes me want to see The Passion Of The Christ more than knowing some lady had a heart attack during the cruxificion scene and died.
If that's not marketing, I don't know what is.
I'm going to get cherry coke, hot tamales, popcorn with parmesan, and settle into it.
But not till next week. This weekend I'm in LA for work. I brought my dog. My coworker's dogs think he's sexy or something, because I spent the last 3 hours clicker training them to "no hump" my poor dog. It's so bad, I brought him to the office.
Poor Seamas! Dermatitis and still sexy.
~Amelie, tired from driving down the 5 listening to the only radio station that would come in, Rush Limbaugh. I forgot how crazy he is. Good to know.
Wednesday, February 25, 2004
Do you have a dog with sensitive skin?
Basically, it's the end of Jesus' life, all the way up to his dying on a cross.
The cross is a bizarre thing. You don't die by being NAILED to the cross. No, it's a torturous death by suffocation. See, you lean forward with the nails in your wrist and ankle bones. You do okay for the first few hours, but after awhile, you back bending/arching will cause it to be painful to breathe. Your chest will eventually stop laboring to move, and you will die. Painfully.
Now, Jews? Belive suicide is a grave sin. A Jewish person following judaic law would not commit suicide, not even to assist in suicide for someone dying from disease.
Christians believe you will be forgiven. I'm not sure why it's a mortal sin in the Catholic church, but your standard basic christian believes in salvation. Because christ died on a cross. But if Jesus was a good Jew, wouldn't that have had some serious issues for him? How is that salvation, when someone who doesn't believe in suicide, lets himself die, if he is divine enough to knock himself off that suffocating cross? Nor do I understand the rationale. If you die on a cross for the good of mankind, how is it good? What does that kind of suffering do for the rest of us? If it helps, why do people die even WORSE kinds of deaths? And why aren't they called special for enduring that kind of pain? For example, all the women who were killed as witches? Or the heretics during the Spanish Inquisition? Or the way that the crusaders killed and violated the moors? Or the Native Americans who died of small pox, painfully, entire communities, wiped out forever?
Which brings me to Buddhism. Buddhism believes that an ascetic holy person, enlightened enough to know better, who lets himself or herself die, is still beautiful. They are the Noble Ones who have completed their task and don't need to be born again.
Which makes me wonder, was Jesus actually a buddhist? Many people think so. In fact, there have been scholars claiming that between his teenage years and age 33 (when it all went down for Jesus), he was in India. Not sure why. But ascetism is common in India, and Buddhist monks are known (in all the stories and legends) for doing nutty things. Even when I was little, I remember reading the loaves and fishes story in CCD when I was 7, and thinking "Hey! that sounds like the pear tree story." What's the pear tree story, you ask?
2 poor monks traveling through a small village during market day asked a pear seller for a pear. They asked for a blemished pear, but he yelled at them to chase them off, and wouldn't give it to them. Instead, he threw it behind him into dog crap behind his cart. A blacksmith took pity on the monks, who immediately went into lotus position and started humming or something. He bought them one pear.
They shared it. And took the core, dug a hole, planted the core with the seeds, begged for a drink of water, sprinkled it on the little mound of dirt, knelt beside it, running their fingers over prayer beads and praying. Soon, a little plant sprouted. And it grew very fast. And magically, it became a pear tree. And it covered itself with buds, flowers, and soon fruits began to ripen. This happened quickly, within a few hours. Everyone helped themselves to the fruit, it was delicious.
The pear seller even had one, and was amazed at the quality.
Soon, the monks picked themselves up, dusted off, and went on their way and the crowds dispersed.
The tree died.
And what was left was broken wood from the cart of the pear seller.
Yes indeedy, the monks had pulled a fast one on the rotten pear merchant, and ruined his cart to boot.
Magic, or hypnosis?
Anyway, I think Jesus was a Buddhist.
And no one can kill a suicide.
~Amelie, who's going to see the movie because I just read it was likened to Kill Bill, which I loved.
Monday, February 23, 2004
So, Nader. He's going to have to work really hard to get on the ballot. I think he will do it, but it will take its toll like it has the last 3 or so elections he's entered. Does no one remember his concession speech where he looked like a hunger striker? Hasn't he survived cancer or something quite painful? While this makes me WANT someone like him, a survivor, a truly honorable man, to be our president, I also feel like he's had enough to fight for.
I can't say that I blame him for Gore losing. I blame Florida entirely. And I think it wouldn't have been so close had Gore been more charismatic. No, t'weren't the Nader's fault. But then, every "green" vote IS probably a vote away from the dems.
Anyway, this is one election he should probably stay out of. I think Mr. Nader would be better suited as an appointment to the head of the US EPA, or Dept. of Justice or something. At least this round.
I don't think I'm too off-base on this one...
In other news,
I'm feeling pretty tired lately. New medications, new weird things happening to this poor body o'mine. Working on some new and fun stuff at work, but it's so draining. At least it's something besides 'reception'.
Saturday, February 21, 2004
Okay then. Two cute things.
Under The Sun or Under Solen. See, I went to Blockbuster on Friday night feeling menstrual and anti-social. And I grabbed The Order (no don't do it, it's awful), Bend It Like Beckham (Fabulous, I watched it twice it made me so happy) and Under the Tuscan Sun.
And I decided to watch the RomCom first. But it wasn't UTTS, it was Under Solen. And it was in Swedish. Which completely confused me at first. However, I think (g)odd wanted me to watch a better movie and secretly tricked me into getting the misfiled Under The Sun (Swedish movie). It was so good! You should go rent it immediately and bypass the tuscan sun crap completely. First of all, it's a cute story. About an illiterate farmer/bachelor. Who has a pelvis-impersonator "friend". And he puts an ad in the local rag to lure a woman to his digs. And he gets this amazing woman, who has fabulous clothes, to his farm. And the story is lovely, if a little dated. It is set in the 1950's, and is liberally spattered with good ol' American Rock and Roll. Plus, the cinematography is brilliant. It's Sweden in midsummer. It will make you want to go there.
But even if tests currently underway confirmed the Thai scientists' findings, it was highly unlikely that cats would prove to be easily infected and such cases would remain rare, WHO added.
Please remember, gentle readers, the influenza group is quite possibly the most dangerous virus groups out their. Far less fragile than HIV, far more deadly than cold retroviruses, it's a no good very bad thing. Especially for older folks, kid folks, and lowered immunity already folks.
Please try not to get it. If you didn't get vaccinated this year, that's probably not a big deal (this icky flu was not covered in the strains predicted), but you can keep yourself safer by:
reminding coworkers to stay home if sick washing your hands like amelie-the-anal (once you have the water running, don't touch anything. Pump your towel, soap up, rinse, tear towel, dry hands, pump more towel, turn off water, use towel to open bathroom door. You will likely notice lots of towels thrown down by the door because this method is finally catching on, and you know a safe restaurant will have 1) plenty o' paper towels, 2)soap, and 3) a can by the door to collect the damp paper leavings of the sufficiently fearful masses). And this is not because I think germs are that scary. I just don't want mass quantities of some infected person's lung, bowel, or snot somehow entering my "zone". I can handle a handshake. I ain't Larry David.
The other things you can do are:
try not to get a cold. Colds (and certain allergies that cause postnasal drip) lower your immune system until they are completely gone; and then you are ramped up (so, basically, try not to get ANOTHER cold if you already had one. Colds and flus are mostly spread by coughing, so stay about 5 feet away from people who are coughing. If you are married or a parent to one, take them tea and sleep on the couch for about 5 days, don't share their utensils/eating implements. And wash your hands a lot.)
drink plenty of water. Water and other hydrating fluids help you make mucus. Mucus, while a yucky word, is actually good. It helps clean you out.
take a good multivitamin. No matter what, this can help boost your system. Microdoses of minerals and vitamins that you might not be getting from your regular diet can help sustain your systems, and even help you weather a cold better. For women especially I think prenatals are important all the time, year round, even when not pregnant.
Get Exercise. No matter what the weather is like, move a little. It will make your blood pump. If you have something yucky brewing, it might help you metabolize it faster. If you are sick and achey already, nevermind, just get into bed with some tea and some nice music. But if you ain't already sick, move.
Things that do not cause colds or flus, but make you uncomfortable and irritated (which breaks down your immunity)
~Being Out In The Rain And Getting Soaked And Staying That Way
Things that might help and you should have stocked and on hand since the flu season is ramping up (November-April):
~Camphor/menthol ointment (for chest/sinuses--it doesn't do anything except help dry up the nose with mentolatum)
~Cold meds like theraflu (can be very hot and soothing), and tylenol cold/flu. DO NOT TAKE ASPIRIN/IBUPROFEN BASED STUFF WITH THE FLU. Even adults and older kids can come down with Reyes syndrome, which is a bad reaction to aspirin while fighting a flu.
~Zicam zinc gel spray (I swear by this stuff, I usually only need three doses before I feel much better, AND, I always get a new bottle for every cold/flu)
~Cozy fleecy throw blanket for being on the couch when you are too miserable to stay in bed
~Chicken Soup (it really helps, but if you are veggie, you can just take the vitamin e capsules knock them back with a hot savory herbal soup and get most of what's beneficial anyway.)
~Your favorite sour hard candy (for sore throat), or your favorite lozenges
~Tissues with lotion
Soy Mohair. Funny, because I don't own any mohair at all. Not one thing.
You are Mohair.
You are a warm and fuzzy type who works well with others, doing your share without being too weighty. You can be stubborn and absolutely refuse to change your position once it is set, but that's okay since you are good at covering up your mistakes.
You are Kathleen Hanna! Poster child of the riot grrls, you've grown up a little in the last few years. You've brought rape, feminism, sexuality, and wymyn surviving hard shit into the mainstream through art, music, and spokenword. You're PUNKROCK! But, like, for real.
Wednesday, February 18, 2004 Just In Case You Were Wondering...
"It is wrong to discriminate against any federal employee, or any employee, based on discrimination," Bloch said.
That sounds like a line out of The Lost Skeleton Of Cadavra. Or a GWB speech. Which makes sense, since he's a GWB appointee.
Bloch removed all reference to sexual orientation discrimination from a federal agency website that described the rights of federal employees.
Nice going, jackass.
I ain't the only one who is irritated:
Colleen M. Kelley, president of the National Treasury Employees Union, said she was especially concerned because Bloch removed an agency news release posted last year describing an investigation at the Internal Revenue Service that found an IRS supervisor denied a job to an applicant because he was gay.
"Removal of this press release, in particular, seems to signal a deliberate decision to obscure the history of OSC's enforcement actions," Kelley said. Her union represents about 98,000 IRS workers
In other news, I met a relative today. He is related because I have a great great great grandfather, Fortunato Arriola, in common with him. FA died onboard a ship (I thought he died near Tierra Del Fuego, but other biographies say he died in the Bahamas, my new cousin says he died "clinging to a red floating box".) Anyway, my GGGF was a painter, with 12 daughters by a woman with a pretty name that I've forgotten (Isobel somethingorother). He lived on Telegraph Hill and he died in 1872. I am related to Alexandra Arriola, one of the daughters who lived to maturity through my paternal grandmother. He's related similarly to another one. 2 of the other daughters, Hermina and Virginia, were painters as well. GGGF can be seen sometimes in the Crocker Art Museum's California Room. He is also featured every so often by the Oakland Museum. Interesting art, too. My grandmother's cousin has a big 14' painting in her living room, it's Adam and Eve standing in front of a giant Mexican volcano spilling lava.
~Amelie, who had a nice lunch with a 15th cousin 12 times removed or something.
This weekend was wonderful. I went hiking on Valentine's day with Erica and all the dogs. We went to Redwood, part of the East Bay Regional Parks District up in the Oakland Hills. Later that evening, Seamas and I drove across the SF Bay to visit the PF. PF? Bought me lovely pink mum flowers that were super cute. It's the first time he ever bought a girl who wasn't his mom flowers, so I am getting weepy eyed just thinking about it.
We had a good weekend. Saw The Lost Skeleton Of Cadavra (and loved it. I've been saying "Tip Tip Tip" and "Always Agree." ever since) and we drove up to Twin Peaks on Sunday evening with friends (and Seamas, who managed to get a tick up there somehow). The city was a miracle of lights. So beautiful.
Last night, (after Agility, wear Seamas decided the wind was nice and distracting, so he took off to visit and chase dogs in an embarrassing way every time he was off leash), PF and I watched The Fog Of War. It broke my hear, the dispassionate way warfare is approached. I learned a few things. And I'd be one of the ones saying equitive proportionality in war is immoral. What we did to Japan during WWII, dropping waves of bombs and then the 2 big H bombs, that? Immoral. IMMORAL. War is complex, and wrong, and necessary, and heartbreaking. I am not sure if I liked Robert McNamara, but I surely respected him. Even his detachedness. He was a rather frightening personage, and PF reminded me that McNamara, while discussing his years with the Ford Motor Co., neglected to mention that Henry Ford was a big anti-semite who was proud of his silver nazi cross (Hitler presented it himself) and Ford profitted quite a bit from making and selling tanks to both the Americans AND the Germans during WWII. Scary-interesting, non? I'd heard this before, and probably blogged about it, but I forget.
Next, the not so fun:
Today I spent at the doctors. I literally got up at 6 AM and then headed out to a fertility clinic thanks to the PF and his trusty Ford. For the first time, I actually saw how messed up I am inside (uterus/ovaries-wise), on an ultrasound that made sense to me. It was actually a calming thing; I've been dreading this for a long time, and yet knew I needed it. I knew that what was happening to me, all these years, was not normal, and yet I still hoped beyond hope that I wouldn't be diagnosed with something bad. The doctor prescribed some tests, some medications, and discussed some of my options.
I am so sick of dealing with general practitioners, the way they look at you and your tests and declare you normal but hypochondriacal (even though all observable symptoms point to "NOT".) I am sick of hormone pills that are supposed to "fix" you. I'm sick of fighting for the right care. I'm sick of people (doctors who should know better) telling me to lose weight, as if that would stop the deranged motion of my estrogen (in someone like me, it wouldn't). I'm sick of people telling me to try harder to fix things, when I know I'm doing everything I can, and that I do more than them. I am so glad I forced the issue. I'm so glad I am going to get the right treatment. It might even work. Hopefully.
In two days I will start to take insulin sensitizers, something I have been asking for for 2 whole years, and will work up to a pretty high dose. Insulin is a really tricky hormone, if you make too much. It messes with your cholesterol and your fat proportions. It causes horrible things to happen to your ovaries and your uterus, if you are insensitive to it. That's because your body will make more and more in a vicious cycle, until you have diabetes II, or in my possible case, clog your arteries so much that your heart pumps itself out. Not to mention all the other hellish little things. Like standing up to walk across a room and feeling a deep cramp, and then you pretty much bleed to death right there. Except that you don't. You just complain, and some people (like your mom) will tell you you're overreacting. I have news for women with embarrassing period issues: if you bleed a lot, as in more than a box of supers/heavy for more than 7 days/start stop all month/bleed 3 months straight etc. etc. etc., you are not normal. Other normal women are not having heavy periods like that. Call your doc on it, or switch until you are noticed by one who cares. And if your hip to waist ratio is not around .7 and have extremely high cholesterol, get thee to a specialist. You might have an insulin/androgen hormone disorder, and no one noticed because you aren't presenting like other women with the disorder. And while you might get SOME help from birth control pills, they ain't the panacea doctors have been told to promote them as, not even "yasmin", which triggered terrifying sweat inducing migraines in me. I speak as someone who has desperately tried the brands of no less than 12 pharmaceutical companies (only yasmin caused me migraines). If you don't experience relief, if you develop side effects, if you gain absurd amounts of weight for your exercise and diet regimen: find another doctor. Keep chanting "something is wrong with me and I want it fixed." It's infuriating to be told you are a hypochondriac, even though at some point, you start to believe it. Expecially if blood test after blood test comes back normal.
Until someone with an eyeball for abnormal things takes a look and says "Oh. The ratios are WAY off."
And I always sort of knew.
So, I'm pretty angry at the world still, as I've been treated like a hypochondriac for complaining about lots of things that are a direct consequence of insulin resistance. It turns out, all my walking? Brings my insulin levels during fasting down to a high normal. Great. Except, if I were some slug? I'd have been on the right medications years ago. Instead, they tell me to lose weight. Which is virtually impossible traditional ways. It doesn't even matter if you take prescribed speed, you won't lose weight. Although you might vacuum your house at 2 AM.
No, you won't lose weight, because your body doesn't recognize blood sugar. So. Until you normalize your insulin, nothing you do will help. Good to know, you know?
Anyway. The good news is, I have a confirmed, irrefutable diagnosis. Complete with photos of the whole mess. And I have some coverage for treatment.
Friday, February 13, 2004
It's getting more and more beautiful.
I'm thinking either Gavin Newsom is brilliant, savvy, and fabulous, or that he's just a lovely person.
In any case, it looks like the conservatives will have to challenge EACH and EVERY marriage instead of "cleaning" up the law. I'd love to see it happen with Del and Phyllis. Can you imagine them in court? Or at the state legislature defending their marriage status to the appropriate committees, WITH THE AARP RIGHT BEHIND THEM??? Not to mention the various liberal and gay/lesbian groups?
And I'm not spilling the beans, but I got more good news about the "anti gay marriage" crud that California voters asspassed a couple of years ago. Suffice it to say: loophole 101. And I ain't saying what it is, or who is playing with it, but it's good.
There's no doubt about it. There is nothing pleasant worth noting about the actual procedure, except than when it's over, you are done. However, it's one of the most pressing issues today because EVERYTHING about abortion relates to women's issues of privacy, self, humanity and freedom. To personhood, I say. And I decree, the person who gets to decide what lives and dies is the pregnant person who is already breathing air. An embryo, although many people seem to think I'm wrong, is not a person. Yet. That embryo? Survives only if wanted (or forced, which makes me think of false imprisonment, but that's another entry another day). And I personally do not care what month of the pregnancy a woman determines is the time to abort, although I think the last couple of months is a little bit extreme. I definitely do not want a "mom" created who won't take care of her kid. I definitely like the idea of adoption, but it ain't for everyone.
Anyway, I'm coming out. As pro-abortion. Not even a little sorry about it. And not because abortion is "fun, thrilling, and exciting!" In fact, I want a kid pretty badly. But I ain't about to stomp all over my own rights to make sure there's plenty available in the orphanages (or, you know, the garbage cans of america's high school prom nights.)
What baffles me is that so many pro-lifers treat pro-choicers as if women get pregnant on purpose JUST to be able to have abortions, early, mid and late term. Like they give you a popsicle,a vibrator and a set of designer bookends if you allow yourself to submit to the procedure.
As if the idea of abortion isn't the hardest, most soul wracking thing a women who is pregnant and doesn't want to have a kid right now has to face. As if it's an easy way out of a situation. Or as they say, "A Permanent Solution To A Temporary Problem". I don't get that comment, by the way. Pregnancy: it lasts 40 WEEKS in the human female. We are then required to raise a child to age 18. Probably, we will then be saddled with the grandkids. How is that temporary? I have no idea. But that's what the NRL says.
Abortion: not fun for anyone. But you do what you gotta do.
Anyway, this got sparked up in me because I just read Am Persand's post on why the Republican Party does not actually want to ban late term abortions (yes, written in October, but I haven't been reading a lot of blogs lately). Mel got me there, and I plowed through it all between 12 PM and 1 this afternoon. Good stuff.
And from what I can recall, late term abortions happen because 1) women are denied basic health care to get them done earlier and 2) many very young, sexually active women are in denial that they are pregnant in the first place, because of their conservative religious upbringing and 3) many birth defects cannot be determined early enough to do an abortion in the first trimester (an amnioscentesis, if I am correct, is done at 4 months). There are probably plenty of other resolute reasons to ensure the procedure is kept safe, legal, and widely available.
And to anyone who thinks a woman should keep a problem pregnancy going because god only gives you what you can handle: see the easter bunny/god discussion in the comments of Alas, A Blog.
Thursday, February 12, 2004 Two Old Biddies Do The Deed.
Or maybe it should be called
"The Old Wives Club"
Precious, I say. And why shouldn't they? It breaks my heart to read about Gay couples that have been monogamous and dedicated to each other since WWII, and yet, they are denied the basics. Like being considered a "REAL" couple by the vast majority of society.
I think it's brilliant that Del and Phyllis got married. I met them at a California NOW convention in 2001 and had a fun time at the table with them. They are both teeny and cute, and everyone clapped when they said they were "engaged" even back then.
Not sure why anybody would take an issue with this sort of thing. It made my day.
This Gavin Newsome character is quite a character. He's like the Jerry Brown of the new century.
By Mark Taylor
A move by U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft to subpoena the medical records of 40 patients who received so-called partial-birth abortions at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago was halted?at least temporarily?when a Chicago federal judge quashed the information request.
Okay, they are subpoenaing private medical records? What the FUCK??? Is this fucking THE HANDMAID'S TALE or WHAT!?
I want to subpoena Asscroft's PSYCH records, he's obviously one o'them high functioning psychopaths I used to hear about, the ones who get off on power.
Make a note:
Don't vote for people who can't mind their own damned business. They appoint assholes who have nothing better to do than harrass women by trying to get into their medical records.
And what would they do with it? Get the reasons for abortion to see if it was medically necessary? For women they will eventually want to prosecute for murder?
Like I said. Nothing better to fucking do.
~Amelie, freaking out. I am seriously freaking out. Why is no one talking about this???
Or Civil Union or Domestic Partnership. Whatever your state wants to employ to ensure that your chosen loved one has the right to be with you when you're sick, adopt kids with you, buy a house with you, or be covered by your insurance. There is nothing wrong with it. We should all be so lucky that we find someone who will be with us till death do we part. I wish these churchies would just simmer down. They act like they have nothing better to do on a Sunday. I mean, really. Shouldn't they be in church, or doing something useful? Like donating their time in the local battered women's shelter babysitting the toddlers so the escaped-from-violence residents can read the paper unmolested, looking for apartments and jobs?
The more they protest and say there is a sanctity issue, the more inclined I am to think that marriage is for the birds. Not that I don't know fabulous married people. Not that I would reject it if it were offered to me. It's just that the more people who say it's not okay for women to marry other women, the more I think it sounds like the exclusionary acts that made it illegal for a Chinese man to marry a white gal. It's about keeping people from having full rights and responsibilities. From making choices for themselves.
Plus, I don't know how "sanctified" marriage really is, if (is it 50%?) a high number of all straight marriages end in divorce within the first 10 years.
Why fight so hard for that particular rite of passage? I'd trust them more if they were carrying signs that said "We just don't want you to get divorced and lose everything important. Like we did."
~Amelie, yes on wedded bliss for the Gays. And higher pay for the never married folks who subsidize the married folk's insurance coverage at work. Amen.
Friday, February 06, 2004
The Carlie Brucia case is so sad. It's really hard for me to watch news casts about abducted women and children, but I kept up with this since I found out about it. The tape of her just gave me the chills. I mean, the heebie jeebies. That is the last thing her parents get to see? Oh my god. I wish they'd had a birthday party the day before so that she was on videotape smiling. Not on some security tape scared to death and being led away to some form of torturous hell. Poor baby.
I'm glad they found the little girl's body for her family's sake (anyone read the Alice Siebold The Lovely Bones?) Sometimes they are never found. I know that kidnapping and murder (and rape) is not exactly a "new" kind of crime, and I'm sure we hear about these things happening in a speedier manner due to media attention. But it always freaks me out. Especially since 2001, when a classmate/pal of mine was kidnapped and found the next year.
I swear. I remember being 11 and riding my bike in the field near my house and building ground forts and hanging tire swings and catching bullfrogs in the creek...pretty far away from parental supervision. And nothing happened.
Yet every day it seems there's a new missing girl or boy, taken by a stranger.
What do parents do nowadays? I remember being told to never talk to strangers, but I always did anyway because people were so nice when I was little. Now, in my 30s, I'm far more distrusting.
If you're a parent, what measures do you take to protect your kids? Or do you feel this hopeless "if it happens, it happens"? OR, do you think it won't happen to your kid (because in all honesty, kidnap victims are statistically pretty rare)?
Thursday, February 05, 2004
Very depressing news today. I may not be able to even afford the treatments I need. According to my insurance, what I thought was just a "specialist" visit is actually a "special specialist" and therefore, they only cover 50% of my treatment and visits. Visits to this particular doctor average 400 bucks a visit, making my copay $200. That does not include non-routine examinations and medications or bloodwork, all of which I will have to pay for out of pocket if they are ordered, which they will be. The only thing I can say is "some people don't even have %50 coverage" which makes me slightly less unlucky than them. Fantastic.
In other news, Martha Stewart may be going down after all. This makes me sad. But I'm also irritated that rich people think they can get away with cheating others. Some things I have noticed (just generalizations):
When asked, men my age usually say, "Serves her right, I hope she goes to PRISON!" and women my age say, "that is so stupid. I can't believe Martha Stewart is on trial for $51,000 saved when so many other, more horrifying, white collar crimes go unnoticed." And I quote. Pretty much perfectly, from every mouth asked that ever uttered a thought on the subject. Edit: except for Moe. Who thinks Martha would make the perfect caterer for all the who's who prison parties.
Life has too many ups and downs. I just need some sort of stable "yes, that works perfectly" for a month or two.
~Amelie, who can knock it out there 301.5 ft.
I should update my map of the states to include Nevada (since I'm so often there and forget it's not California) and Minnesota, where my cousins live and I've been to one time.
I could live in Minneapolis. My cousin got married in January '98 and it was only 45 degrees and sunny. That ain't normal for Minneapolis, let me tell ya. But then, what do I know? That's the only time I was there and I only spent 4 days in their weather.
I could probably like Arizona and Utah as well, I've been through both states; however I avoid religiousity. There is a lot o' that there.
I like the cold. Portland is still my favorite western city because I haven't been to Seattle. But if Seattle is anything like Vancouver, BC? I will love it. I loved British Columbia. I think I would love all of Canada, actually.
I tells ya, if'n GWB wins again, I'm begging them to take me and Seamas in. I scored a 78, so I think they would take me if I applied.
~Amelie, "il est jusqu'aux électeurs", La Bonne
Tuesday, February 03, 2004
I went on the drudge report to see what everyone is still hemming and hawing over at my office. Not much, really. It's a boob with a big areola covering pastie that looks like a star. But since I don't normally want to see JJ's Nunus, then it's gives me YET ANOTHER reason to boycott The Superbowl. If the FCC removes Safe Harbor Hours, though, I'll be really upset. I like my punk rock midnights.
I frankly do not understand the fascination with boring sports.
How can people sit and watch a boring thing like American Football? The only exciting thing about it is the commercials, and from what I've heard, even THOSE weren't any good.
Nope. My Sunday was infinitely better. I watched an old horror movie (The Night Of The Hunter) with Alice and Maya and tried to replicate Zachary's spinach and muchroom pizza pie.
Boring sports in Alphatbetical Order:
3) Tennis (can be exciting actually, but it seriously depends depends depends)
Everything else I'm able to watch without nodding off. Even the hammerthrow and ice dancing. But boy, Football As We Know It? It is hell.
Of course, actually PLAYING football is hilarious fun. Although golf is not.
I'm so tired! I thought I was tired last night after Agility (Seamas was FANTASTIC for his first try at a class!) but I think I may be getting sick.
I'm hovering between sleep and frenzy.
And then, of course, I read this article and got pissed off again.
So now it's sleepy, frenzied, pissed off.
My dog, however, is fabulous. The teachers kept asking me if he could do any of the equipment and I kept saying "I think so..." and then I would set him in front of it and he would shoot over it so fast they raised eyebrows at him. One teacher even remembered me from previously meeting me (minus Seamas) because I had arrived one day with Erica to bug her at a just-for-fun tournament. She asked me if this was the dog I was so excited about, and I said "Of COURSE!"
What he cannot do yet: weave poles. However, he will enter the cages and weave if I run ahead. So long as I don't look like I'm running away, because then he will jump over the cages. After about 3 months, they only have guides on the poles. After about 1 year, they take the guides off, and the dogs weave alone. It's pretty amazing to watch a dog fly through the poles really fast, slalom like.
That Seamas. He amazes me so much. He made me look like I've been doing this forever. I love him.
~Amelie, who loves her dog and despises the current political regime all in one thought.
Monday, February 02, 2004
Today was groundhog day. And Phil saw his shadow. Which means more winter than you can stand to bear.
Personally, I like wind. And I like rain. But I don't like them together, a la my flimsy umbrella shifting and wafting around my head letting me get wet and cold.
I saw some old lady with a sesame street umbrella, the plastic kind that you literally pull down over yourself, and I was jealous. Meanwhile, mine managed to pull out a hunk of my hair and blam into my ear while I hunkered under it and marched through puddles.
Tonight is Agility. And I don't even care that it's raining. I spent months on the waiting list, and over a year finding the most perfect program.
I am wayyyy too excited for this. I packed 4 lbs of treats and my dog's toothbrush. Last night we saw an ad for the AKC agility trials again once everyone went home after Curb Your Enthusiasm, and Seamas and I were jumping around the living room High Fiving because we can totally do that. I'm a bit ridiculous, but my dog is freaking brill and I don't mind saying so. I spent the entire weekend practicing jumps, weaves, and tunnels, and then we practiced "targeting", which is when you send your dog off to touch something far away from you on command.
So, I packed his bag for class. Then I stayed up reading my "Dog Tricks" book until 2 AM.
Sunday, February 01, 2004
I've gone practically NOWHERE compared to Maya. The PF is also well traveled in the USofA and abroad. My mom and uncle Bill drove us out to meet my dad in Biloxi, Mississippi when I was 4. I lived there for a year. I remember driving through Texas and asking over and over if we were "there yet?" and getting the answer "Not even close". Also, there is one city on the way that smells like pennies in your hand. I was in the back seat of the car and saw smokestacks. I was also coloring with a silver crayola, and to this day I cannot abide that crayon, it's smell, or the smell of coins held in my hand too long. I also apparently rode a goat in Annapolis (I have seen pictures) when I was 3 or something. That trip is completely wiped out of my memory, so I guess the goat ride wasn't so much fun.