Wednesday, July 28, 2004


Illinois State Senator Barrack Obama (who is runing for a seat in the U.S. Senate) gave one of the best speeches I have heard in a very long time last night at the Democratric National Conventiont. So good, in fact, I would vote for him for President if he were on the ticket. I can't believe though, that none of the networks broadcast the convention last night. Is this not news, people? Would you really rather watch reruns of "Will and Grace" or whatever other garbage was most likely on? Sadly, probably so, and that is why you could only watch it on PBS or cable news stations. Anyway, you can read the transcript of the speech here but here is an excerpt:

If there's a child on the South Side of Chicago who can't read, that matters to me, even if it's not my child.

If there's a senior citizen somewhere who can't pay for their prescription and has to choose between medicine and the rent, that makes my life poorer, even if it's not my grandparent.

If there's an Arab-American family being rounded up without benefit of an attorney or due process, that threatens my civil liberties.

It is that fundamental belief -- it is that fundamental belief -- I am my brother's keeper, I am my sister's keeper -- that makes this country work.

It's what allows us to pursue our individual dreams, yet still come together as a single American family. "E pluribus unum." Out of many, one.

Now even as we speak, there are those who are preparing to divide us, the spin masters and negative ad peddlers who embrace the politics of anything goes.

Well, I say to them tonight, there's not a liberal America and a conservative America -- there is the United States of America.

There's not a black America and white America and Latino America and Asian America -- there is the United States of America.

The pundits, the pundits like to slice and dice our country into red states and blue states; red states for Republicans, blue states for Democrats. But I've got news for them, too. We worship an awesome God in the blue states, and we don't like federal agents poking around our libraries in the red states.

We coach Little League in the blue states and have gay friends in the red states.

There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq and patriots who supported it.

We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America.

In the end, that's what this election is about. Do we participate in a politics of cynicism or do we participate in a politics of hope?

I am very excited to have this man as our next U.S. Senator. Yay for good, honest, exciting politicians!

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Potter Withdrawal and More Crazy Talk From the Succubus

I don't know what to do with myself now. Over the past week I read both "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" and "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix." That's 1622 pages of fantastic, magical adventures consumed, leaving me to now join the ranks of millions of readers anxiously waiting for J.K. Rowling to hurry up and FINISH WRITING BOOK 6 ALREADY!! I seriously could not stop reading those books until I had read every last word. I think I read for about 6 hours last night as I finished up the last book and it left me feeling depressed afterwards that I had no more to read. I had the same feeling upon finishing reading Mists of Avalon and the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Luckily Jason had the Democratic convention to watch so I didn't have to feel too guilty for burying my face in a book all night. I'm planning on watching tonight although I'm bummed that I missed Clinton's speech yesterday. I will have to download it from the convention website and watch it later. Of course, according to Ann Coulter, my doing this is a sure sign of my unattractiveness- seeing that as a liberal I can never be as pretty as her.

Just an Ambulance Chaser?

This article was posted on a while back and I thought it was just unbelievable. I am posting an excerpt of it here but you can also read the full article here if you are a Salon member (otherwise you have to watch a short ad to get a day pass.)

On a summer evening in 1993, David Lakey took his little girl swimming at a recreation center in Raleigh, N.C. Valerie Lakey was 5 years old, a good swimmer, and she and her friends liked to splash around in the children's wading pool that stayed open a little later than the big pool where they usually swam.

That's what Valerie was doing when a nearby mom heard her call out for help. Valerie was sitting on the bottom of the shallow pool, and the suction from the drain was holding her down. David Lakey raced to free his daughter but couldn't. Other parents jumped in the water to help, but they couldn't get Valerie loose. Valerie was scared, and she began to say that her stomach hurt.

Time passed, and somebody figured out how to turn off the pool's pump. The suction broke, and Valerie was released from its grip. But as David Lakey pulled his daughter from the water, blood and tissue filled the pool. Valerie's intestines had been sucked out.

David Lakey slumped to the ground on the side of the pool. He held his daughter on his chest, praying as they waited for an ambulance. Over and over, he told Valerie, "Daddy loves you. Daddy loves you. Daddy loves you."

This account of what happened to Valerie Lakey comes from "Four Trials," the book John Edwards wrote last year as he prepared to run for the presidency. Edwards represented Valerie in a lawsuit against the company that made the drain cover in that swimming pool. A jury awarded her $25 million, compensation for a life of intravenous feedings and colostomy bags.

Tucker Carlson has heard about Valerie's case. It's the one, apparently, that causes him to dismiss John Edwards as a "personal-injury lawyer specializing in Jacuzzi cases."

For six years now, Republicans have tried to minimize and demonize John Edwards as the worst kind of societal parasite: a personal-injury lawyer. North Carolina Sen. Lauch Faircloth ran anti-lawyer TV spots when Edwards ran against him in 1998. When Edwards began pondering a presidential campaign, then-White House spokesman Ari Fleischer was quoted as saying, "Bring on the ambulance chaser."

But there's a problem for the Republicans: Lawyers like John Edwards, and clients like Valerie Lakey. The GOP and its allies in business and the media can articulate broad economic policy reasons for tort reform, for cracking down on lawyers who file frivolous lawsuits, for reining in the forum shopping and other abuses that sometimes accompany big class-action lawsuits. But it's tough to pin any of those problems on Edwards -- no one has charged that he filed frivolous lawsuits -- and it's hard to trump stories like Valerie Lakey's with statistics about what Republicans call the "tort tax."

Edwards practiced law in North Carolina for nearly two decades. He spent the first two years of his legal career as a junior associate in a law firm that represented corporate defendants, then moved on to the plaintiff's work for which he became famous. He represented children who developed cerebral palsy in lawsuits against their mothers' doctors and hospitals; a woman who underwent a double mastectomy based on a false diagnosis of cancer; he represented a child whose parents were killed when their car was smashed by a big rig; he represented Valerie Lakey.

"The Republicans want to put Edwards out there as a 'trial lawyer,' but I don't think it cuts deeply as an issue because he's not your stereotypical, caricaturable ambulance chaser," says Ferrel Guillory, director of the University of North Carolina's Program on Southern Politics, Media and Public Life." The kind of clients that Edwards represented are everyday folks, folks like you and me, people who feel aggrieved by powerful forces out there, whether it's an HMO or a hospital or something else."

Thursday, July 22, 2004

A Bit Extreme?

I took a couple of silly quizzes this morning to see which classic movie and world leader I am most like. I think my results are a little bit over the top!

Friday, July 16, 2004

Ok, Back to Ranting

Well, it seems now that I have finally discovered that I live right by one of the remaining drive-in movie theaters in Illinois, they have insisted on showing the double-feature of Spiderman and WHITE CHICKS for the past three weeks. What gives, guys??


I am following Billy's suggestion and offering up photographic evidence that I am not always whiny/complaining/frustrated/rage-filled or all of the above. So here it is: Me! In hot tub! Having- what is that? FUN! (Plus, note the weird, glowing cyborg eyeball I seem to have.)

Imagine that.

Why, CBS? WHY???

As it has been previously stated, I enjoy my TV. I realize that sometimes I can be a bit of a TV snob, with my indulgence in HBO and healthy obsession with so-called "cult" shows like Buffy and Angel. But I have to admit, I enjoy what you might call "fluff" television as well. First of all, I am severly addicted to the Survivor series and have watched every season from start to finish. But my second guilty pleasure has got to be the witty, well-dressed, Las Vegas crime scene investigators on, well, C.S.I. So imagine my dismay when I read today that CBS has fired two member of the cast- Jorja Fox and George Eads- over a salary dispute. Not fair! How can they bag evidence without the gap-toothed cynicism of sassy Sara Sidle?? How can they process hair and clothing fibers without the rugged good looks of Nick Stokes?? Are they going to up the number of shirtless Warrick scenes to make up for this?? Soon we will be left with nothing but Grissom's saucy one-liners and Marg Helgenberger's skimpy tank top collection. What will we do then?

Wednesday, July 14, 2004


��I would argue that the future of our country hangs in the balance because the future of marriage hangs in the balance," said Sen. Rick Santorum, a leader in the fight to approve the measure. ��Isn't that the ultimate homeland security, standing up and defending marriage?"

Seriously. Shut up. Please.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

I Am A Nice Person! At Least I Think I Am?

Geez, reading through my last month of post I think I seem like a cranky, frustrated, super-annoyed person. I think maybe I come across this way since I've always tried to keep my girls' blog more upbeat and happy and this page is maybe used to balance that out? It seems like I'm more likely to post here when something really makes me upset (like say all of this talk of possibly postponing the election in case of a terrorist attack? Come on people. When would that seriously be necessary on a national rather than state level??) But I'm getting off the point already. I actually am enjoying myself lately. I finally got "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" from the library after obsessively checking it's availability on the Bartlett Library's website every day. Yay for persistence! I also scored an entire afternoon to myself- with no kids!- when Jason took the girls to a family get-together in Rockford this past Saturday. I spent the entire five hours or so parked in front of Jason's computer working on Juliana's birthday video. This year I am using the song's "We Got the Beat" by the Go-Go's, as well as Elvis Presley's "Little Sister" and Nat King Cole's "Unforgettable". It took me forever to find and download a version of "Unforgettable" that did not have Cole's daughter Natalie singing along with him. Sorry girl, but the original is just so much better.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Oh No You Didn't

Ok, so would you have a right to be mad at someone if your camera's LCD screen got scratched after asking said person to carry the camera free-floating in their purse filled with baby toys, car keys, sunglasses and god-knows-what-else nearly every time you went someplace together??

Sorry, not taking the blame for this one. Get a camera bag.

Sick and Tired

If I have to hear the phrase "defense of marriage" one more time..... Seriously, the complete disrespect and bigotry directed at gay people by the president is enough alone for me to want him out of there.

"If courts create their own arbitrary definition of marriage as a mere legal contract and cut marriage off from its cultural, religious and natural roots, then the meaning of marriage is lost, and the institution is weakened,"

Yeah, and that J. Lo is really a shining example of what that institution is all about.

Wednesday, July 7, 2004

Congrats to Jon-Boy!

Jon Stewart a Daddy!

How about that oh-so-normal-non-celebrity-baby name? No Pilot, Rocco, or Scout for little Nathan Thomas. Love it.

Tuesday, July 6, 2004

Darn Kids and Their Book Readin'

So I finished the third Harry Potter book on Saturday night and since the library was closed on Sunday and Monday for the holiday, I had to wait until today to rush over and get a copy of the fourth book in the series, "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire". Imagine my dismay upon discovering that all nine copies of the book were CHECKED OUT ALREADY and there was only a lonely audio cassette copy left on the shelf! Kids, I know school is out, but shouldn't you be hanging out in front of convenience stores, playing violent video games or partaking in various summertine shenanigans and tomfoolery instead of reading my Harry Potter book??!!!

Monday, July 5, 2004


John Kerry cited in Catholic heresy case

Question: Why is Kerry a heretic for receiving communion and being pro-choice while Bush can be pro-death penalty and receive communion with no fuss whatsoever?


Friday, July 2, 2004

Real Patriotism in Action

NY Daily News: "A soaring display of American patriotism">

Be Afraid


The FBI bulletin repeated for local authorities a previously released list of indicators often associated with suicide bomber attacks overseas. These include:

- Irregular, loose-fitting clothing not appropriate for warm weather, possibly with "protruding bulges or exposed wires" or a noticeable chemical odor

- "Sweating, mumbling (prayers) or unusually calm and detached behavior." In addition, people who refuse to show their hands, possibly to conceal a detonator

- Disguises, including military, police, medical or firefighter uniforms or someone posing as a pregnant woman

- Large or heavy baggage not appropriate for the location, such as a big duffel bag carried into a restaurant

But go about your usual holiday weekend business! And don't forget to buy stuff.

Thursday, July 1, 2004

I Take It Back

Ok, I officially remove the afore-mentioned title of "Poop-Head" from Greg Steffke. For now.