Jesus wept

I want you to be aware of this story, to read it and understand what lurks behind that smiling, affable face of his. At a recent Christian supremacist conference he was captured on a live feed saying: “I almost wish that there would be, like, a simultaneous telecast, and all Americans would be forced–forced at gunpoint no less–to listen to every David Barton message, and I think our country would be better for it.” The video was edited later to remove that “joke” but it’s been captured and put on YouTube so that the people of this country can see Huckabee’s true colors.






So who is this David Barton?  He is the leading promoter of a brand of falsified American history altered to support the claim that America was founded as a Christian, rather than a secular, nation.  I’m serious when I say that this is a threat to all of us, Christians included because the kind of Christianity these people are pushing will know no dogma save their own narrow and fanciful interpretations.  Please watch the video and read the articles cited, and then, if you are as concerned as I am, pass this along.  This country needs to know what it’s facing if we allow men like Mike Huckabee to have any sort of power at all.




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Oh no she didn’t!

Image by State Library and Archives of Florida via Flickr

Author trainwreck alert!!

Every author knows the feeling.  You get a so-so review and you think “Well that reviewer didn’t get it at all!”  But of course if you have even two working brain cells, you pretty much know that the most you should ever do is correct any factual errors without anger or sarcasm.  Just be cool, always be cool.  Arguing with the reviewer is a bad idea because even if you’re right, you’re the one who ends up looking like a horse’s ass.

Someone should have explained this to Jacqueline Howett before she got into it with BigAl’s Books and Pals over his review of her book “The Greek Seaman” which was given two stars mostly for the amount of typos and mistakes.  Ms. Howett’s response is to blame the reviewer for not downloading the “right” version of her novel, implies that he didn’t like her book because she’s English (OMG, my English ancestors are spinning in their graves right now.) and says she’ll stick with all the many good reviews from places like, three of which she proceeds to post in the comments section!

Reviewer proceeds to explain that yes, in fact he did download the file she told him to download and it’s still a mess, and no, it’s not her Englishness that’s turning him off it’s the crappy quality.  Author replies that her writing is just fine and (forgive me, but I must quote this because I couldn’t begin to do it justice by paraphrasing):

“And please follow up now from e-mail.
This is not only discusting and unprofessional on your part, but you really don’t fool me AL.

“Who are you any way? Really who are you?
What do we know about you?

“You never downloaded another copy you liar!
You never ever returned to me an e-mail

“Besides if you want to throw crap at authors you should first ask their permission if they want it stuck up on the internet via e-mail. That debate is high among authors.

“Your the target not me!
Now get this review off here!”

Oh no she didn’t just tell a reviewer to remove his review from his blog!   *headdesk*  BTW, the mistakes?  Hers, not mine.

She makes me embarrassed to call myself an author.  You’ve got to read the thread to really appreciate the scope of Ms. Howett’s unpleasantness.  Not only does she say that her writing is “great” she tells commenters to “Fuck off.”  Yeah, really.


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I am such a technology victim…

Kilroy was here

Image via Wikipedia

This is me doing my Kilroy impersonation over one of my inspiration notebooks.  Why?  Because I’m bored stupid.  I can’t watch TV or sit in my living room, and my laptop is running hot and shutting down a lot so I’m being utterly irrational and deciding my life is over.  I could read, but I’m feeling restless and dissatisfied.  Wilson didn’t get very far with my walls.  The furniture is moved and the curtain rods are down, but that’s as far as it’s gone, which means this is not going to be a two-day job the way I’d hoped but a three-day one and three days really taxes my emotional limits.  At the three day mark I start being sullen and snappish, and not nice to know.  So here I am trying to amuse myself by showing you the color I chose yet again.

I’m also refining my rule of tasty groceries because it’s something to do, and the mango sitting here in front of me supports the rule:  If you buy a particular sort of  meat, produce or deli item and it’s absolutely delicious, you will buy more the next time and it will be crap, you’ll hate it, and will have to force yourself to eat it or let it sit in the fridge until it rots and you have to throw it out.  I don’t know why this is except that nature is capricious and cruel and so are fresh markets.

My mango is flavorless and fibrous.   I can deal with the former but the latter makes me want to yak.  I bought a case of them last week.  Figures, right?  The ones the previous week were little tastes of heaven.  I’m choking this down but I still have two more.  Ugh.  And now I can’t even leave it out for Holi-bunny because of the rats who decided my yard was an all-you-can-eat buffet.

Yes, I’m rambling.  I did end up taking a nap and now I’m stupid.  I baked some pierogies for supper, sprinkling the tops with parmesan, chili powder and a bit of salt.  Nice but no cigar, really.

Why do you always want to do the things you have no access to?  The human brain is an incredibly perverse organ.  At least mine is.


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Displaced and fantastically tired

Displaced and fantastically tired, originally uploaded by dargie.

I’ve been displaced to the sun porch (Note sun) while I listen to my living room be dismantled. The terrifying sounds are about the only think keeping me awake right now.

Charles and I went to Benny Moore around noon, and got a gallon of the teal, and a gallon of a slightly blued gray for the ceiling. The city came and pronounced our back yard rat burrow free, and Israel came and took my old sofa and a load of other stuff to sell or give to needy people, so things are coming along.

I got nearly no sleep last night so I’m feeling pretty fried. I don’t really have a place to sit or a TV to watch, but I’d prolly fall asleep if I did, so this is just as well. Early night tonight, I think.

Those rotten little squirrels seem to have eaten all our bulbs in front, but left most of the ones in the back. I guess the ones in front were riper. Little shitheads. Next year they’re getting sprinkled with cayenne. The bulbs, not the squirrels. And poor Buddha needs a paint job. Ah the work never ends, does it? But one of my mini roses is going to bloom under the new grow light so that’s a good thing.

I hurt

But it’s worth it.  I’m getting my living room painted tomorrow which means I spent most of the weekend moving furniture, books and tchotchkes.  What color is it going to be? you ask.  Please to look at the photo to the left.  It’s going to be a beautiful, gem-like teal.  My accent colors are warm colors from cranberry to orange.  And I’m finally moving my secretary from my bedroom to the living room because I need the desk space.  The secretary?  Here it is in my old place. I really need a makeover.

And yes, I do have a fondness for color.  My kitchen is “smoldering red” which is a deep, ever-so-slightly blued red (just enough to keep it from leaping off the wall and throttling my guests) and the dining room is going to be a deep violet.  Bedroom, French blue again because I love the way it looks at different times of the day, nearly purple at night, warm lavender blue in the morning and during the brightest part of the day it shows its true color.  I was going to paint the office the same green I had on my dining room walls at the old place, but it’s such a dark room that I think I’m going to go with an acid yellow because it’ll reflect light better than any other color I could use.  It’s my most hopeless room, filled with cast off furniture, my desktop, and the cheap, flowery curtains that were on the windows when I moved in along with filthy blinds because I have a bookcase up against the window.  I never open it, it’s only a few feet from a wall, and no air ever comes in.  It’s also directly over the furnace, consequently it’s the hottest room in the house.

I did, however, manage to cull almost six boxes of books, and have already given away about a box worth.  I have a sofa, a desk chair (maybe) and a pile of boxes and bags filled with stuff to go to the Salvation Army.  I also have a blistering sinus headache from all the dust.  Such fun!  But my new sofa will be here maybe this week, and the living room at least should look terrific.  Go me!

How to fix a sinkhole in Chicago

An excavator-mounted hydraulic jackhammer bein...

Image via Wikipedia

Because you just might need to know this.

  1. Ignore hole.  Continue to ignore until irate residents threaten to storm alderman’s office with torches and pitchforks.
  2. Put sawhorses up around hole.
  3. Ignore hole and sawhorses for at least six more months or until local child falls into hole and has to be rescued by firemen.
  4. Send a truck out to break up street with ginormous jackhammers, enlarging hole for necessary below-street repairs and proving to residents that the alderman is doing his job.  Put up more sawhorses with blinking lights, and surround area with yellow caution tape.
  5. Ignore hole for at least six more months, or until sawhorses disappear and a truck accidentally drives into hole and ends up in China.
  6. Send another guy out with another machine to make the edges of the hole perfectly straight.  Leave remnants of yellow tape tied to tree.
  7. Wait several weeks.  Send a crew out to stand around, discuss and point vaguely into hole while one guy works.
  8. Fill hole with gravel.
  9. Remove gravel.
  10. Send another guy into the hole to work while a crew watches and uses walkie-talkies.
  11. Fill hole with gravel.  Put boards over hole, erect more sawhorses with flashing lights and wrap entire area in more yellow tape.
  12. Ignore calls from irate residents about children playing on boards.
  13. As elections approach, send four cement trucks to hole.  Have them block the street while at least six workers mill around.  Fill hole with concrete and put sawhorses and tape back.  Cover fresh concrete with tarps.
  14. Remove tarps, sawhorses and tape. Hold elections.
  15. Send crew out to break up street directly across from the previous hole.
  16. Go to #5, above.  Repeat.
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Bookshelf Porn


Image by dargie via Flickr

It may seem ironic that on a day when I’m  culling my books yet again, I ran across this Tumblr site:  Bookshelf Porn and it literally made me feel all weak at the knees.  I am a book hound, a lover of the small packages of knowledge, adventure, romance; of whatever is contained between the covers.  I even — when the spirit moves me — make altered books like the one pictured here.  So why am I culling instead of finding little spaces to tuck yet another book?  Because I love reading even more than the physical book, and sometimes the latter gets in the way of the former.  I tend to be acquisitive, even obsessive about things I love and sometimes instead of appreciating the things I have, I collect more and more of the same until I’m overwhelmed and I end up unable to use or even appreciate any of it.


A second issue is space.  I just don’t have the space to indulge anymore.  I can pile books onto my Kindle, but actual physical shelf space?  Sadly, I’ll never be one of those people posting photos at Bookshelf Porn, not anymore at least.

And the third reason is that I no longer keep books I’ve read unless I am utterly in love with them.  I just turned 59 and I am aware of how many more reading years I might still have and how much there is left to read.  I asked myself if I really wanted to waste the time left to me re-reading books unless they’re somehow special to me.  When I think of it that way, the answer is obvious.

Meanwhile I browse photos of other people’s libraries the way some folks browse porn sites.  Bookshelf Porn… I’ll be in my bunk.

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