October 15, 2005

WEIRD HEADLINE CHOICE

I should've said this a few days ago, but it didn't seem that important at the time. But now that everyone is carrying on about how the conference between President Bush and the soldiers was "staged", I just wanted to say that I thought the weirdest thing was the link from the MSN homepage (now gone, of course): Bush tries to boost morale. I clicked on it out of sheer curiosity, because I thought that it was such a strange headline. It made me imagine President Bush dressed up in Will Ferrell's cheerleader suit, trying to get soldiers to cheer up and stick with the mission. I don't think the actual interview had anything to do with cheerleading, so it was bizarre that they said he was trying to boost morale.

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JUMPED THE SHARK

A sad day has come: my husband no longer wants to watch The Simpsons.

We hadn't seen any new episodes since spring 2003, so we were excited when they started showing them on AFN Korea. But after four weeks, my husband shut off the TV and said that he was through. A global warming joke every week is a bit too much.

I started getting skeptical when I heard Michael Moore was going to be a guest last year, but it honestly feels like every episode is peppered with Democratic Underground memes. The Simpsons used to be about timeless plots: starting a barbershop quartet, going off to summer camp, writing an Itchy & Scratchy episode. The last episode we watched was a glimpse ten years into the future, complete with global warming turning Alaska into a beach, a military draft for Gulf War Five, and the 51st state being Saudi Israelia (I still don't understand what they were getting at there.) And this garbage is from the same genius minds that made Futurama?

Bart and Lisa go on a field trip to Springfield Glacier...which is the size of an ice cube now. Hardy har har. Give me "I Love Lisa" over this crap any day.

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October 13, 2005

DONE

In a way, I'm a little sad that Charlie won't be able to father any puppies. He's so darn cute himself that I know his offspring would be adorable as well. But what's done is done now.

neuter.JPG

Poor fella.

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October 12, 2005

DEJA VU

Lately the husband and I have been discussing the possibility of another deployment. I keep assuring him that it really wasn't that bad for me and that I could easily handle another. But today when we woke up at 0415 and I drove him to his unit for a three-day field exercise, I got a little misty-eyed as I drove away. All of a sudden I got that Deployment Feeling again, and I remembered that although I could do another deployment, I really would prefer to have him around.

I was looking forward to today because Charlie is at the vet getting neutered. I thought that with him out of the house for the first time since we got him, I might be able to get some work done without his little golden paws all over everything. Just a few moments ago, I realized how much I love that silly little dog. I miss him already, and I just realized I'd rather have him around too, even if he would be barking at the vacuum cleaner and trying to drink the mop water.

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October 11, 2005

BORN

Last night I got to participate in The Miracle of Life: my friend's dog had puppies. My husband and I had never seen anything get born before, so we raced over to her house as soon as she called. One pup was on the way out, and three more were to come.

The whole thing was amazing, gross, beautiful, and eerie all at the same time. I got to see animals come to life! We all held our breath when one of them was stuck in his placenta for way too long, and we cheered when he finally broke through. We felt helpless when the pups couldn't find mom's tummy to nurse; it would've been so easy to just pick one up and position him! We laughed, we gagged, and we oohed and aahed.

It was remarkable.

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October 09, 2005

CRASH

We watched the movie Crash last night. It was horrifying.

I went into this movie blind: the only thing I knew about it was that people thought it was good. I didn't realize that the entire thing was about race. And boy do I mean it was about race. Everything the characters say and do is racially motivated. Every scene is about race. The bottom line in this movie is that we're all racists.

Am I really too naive? I thought this movie was completely unrealistic. I'm sorry, but the DA's advisor is simply not going to mutter "f-ing black people" to a black detective. No way, no how. I'm not denying that we haven't all felt ourselves in these characters' shoes at one point or another, but the downright racist things they utter in every scene are over the top; people just don't talk openly like that. A white man might inwardly grumble about affirmative action, but he's not going to openly belittle the black woman working for the HMO.

I was disappointed with this movie because I had high hopes, and we don't rent movies that often. But I just can't enjoy a program where I hate all the characters, and the only guy I could stand in this movie was the locksmith.

I've never been to LA -- maybe LA is from Mars and the Midwest is from Venus -- but this can't be real life. People just don't think about race every waking second.

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October 08, 2005

DALLAS

I was too young to watch Dallas, but thanks to the magic of DVDs, I've been enjoying that bit of TV history. I mentioned to my husband that it's interesting how simple the plotlines are. To a generation raised on M. Night Shyamalan and CSI, the thought that you could base an hour of TV around "Jock has a heart attack" seems amazing. Dallas is not boring by any means, but it's sure not fast-paced TV like we're used to.

My husband told me about the pending movie plans for Dallas. I had no idea this was in the works, but now that I know the characters, I certainly can't see Brad Pitt as Ray Krebbs! My friend and I were talking the other day about how the idea of beauty shifts over time. We remarked that Charlene Tilton would never have been cast as Lucy today, because by today's standards she's fat. Even though she's not fat at all; she's voluptuous and womanly. I was grossed out to find that they're thinking of casting Lindsey Lohan as Lucy for the movie. Maybe Lohan circa 2004, but not now. There's just no way I'd choose this

lohan.jpg

when Lucy's supposed to look like this

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Give me a curvy, thicky-thick Lucy any day. And a JR who looks like Travolta.

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STORIES

Raven1 got some great advice from his chaplain before returning from Iraq. One paragraph won't do it justice; you have to read the whole thing.

When my husband was home on R&R, he had a bit much to drink and accidentally told me a story he hadn't intended to repeat. He was genuinely surprised that the story didn't freak me out, and it opened the door to telling me a bit more. When he got home at the end of the year, he told me some of the worst things that happened in his time in Iraq. I'm glad that he thinks I'm strong enough to hear them.

I think stories after the fact aren't nearly as frightening as what we wives imagined on our own while they were gone. His reality was no match for my creativity! We who stand and wait read blog posts and news reports about everyone's most exciting days in Iraq, so it's easy to forget that not every day is a battle.

My husband is quiet with his stories though. He and Red6 have talked, but for the most part, his year is his own. He doesn't want to try to explain his experience to anyone, for the only ones who can truly understand it are his platoon sergeant and the other three men in his tank. Sometimes I feel sad that he doesn't get to see any of those guys anymore; it would be nice for him to spend time with people who didn't need to hear the stories because they were there with him.

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October 07, 2005

CHECK SIX

Doc Foglesong is retiring?! Man, that's gonna cut the number of TV commercials in half around here!

(This joke is dedicated to The Girl)

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October 06, 2005

OU

For God's sake, with a system like this, if the country came under enemy attack, the only people who'd know it would be bloggers!

My mom went to Oklahoma University, so she noticed when the crawl at the bottom of the TV said that someone had blown himself up there. But she searched and searched for additional information: nothing else that night on the TV nor in the local paper in the morning. She told me about it, and I found some info on blogs. But why did we have to turn to blogs for reporting of such an event?

Eric of Classical Values has a post with lots of details about what the media is and is not reporting. Funny how a Muslim convert who tries to enter a sports arena and blow himself up isn't news...

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EXPO

I didn't get to attend the Land Combat Expo here in Germany, but a part of me was apparently there...

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I still can't believe that they chose to showcase my blog along with more notable milblogs. What an honor.

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October 05, 2005

WHEW

When Red6 got home from Iraq, the furthest thing from his mind was his blog. He had been home a few days before I gently suggested to him that he put up a post saying that he was home safe. I knew, given my own nature, that many people were worried about him and just wanted reassurance that he was safe and sound. He thought it was funny that people might get that attached to him, but he put up a short post anyway (about how he couldn't wait to hang out with Bogg -- I'm chopped liver, apparently!)

I was reminded of that today when we finally heard from Jack Army, evacuated because of Hurricane Rita. I'm sure he was busy and blogging was far from his priorities, but for those of us who waited 11 days to hear from him, his safety was definitely a priority. His life may have kept moving, but his silent blog kept us at a standstill.

Glad to see you're safe, Jack.

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1985?

Longtime readers know I think that our popular entertainment is a result of our collective value system; it's the reason I blog so often about Rocky. The American Geek found an interesting article about this very phenomenon: How Hollywood needs to stop worrying and love the flag. It's a very interesting take on why Hollywood is in a slump.

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REBIRTH

I started a blog in the first place because I was tired of emailing link after link to my mother. I needed a place where I could compile all of the articles I wanted her to read. Over time, I realized that I'm not that original and that better thinking and analysis was being done elsewhere. I gradually stopped posting things that I knew all the other blogs were already talking about.

The thing is, I have two types of readers. I suspect the majority are blog-heads, those who read several other blogs in addition to mine and know exactly what I'm talking about when I say Turkeygate, superscript th, and "screw 'em". But I'm slowly realizing that I have a growing faction of readers who only read my blog, usually because they know me personally (my neighbor loves to recruit readers for me!) And those readers don't read LGF or RWN and thus miss out on some big stories because I figure no one wants to read another comment about how ridiculous it is that some Kos writer said that we need "streets running awash in rivers of blood" of right-wingers. But if this is the only blog you read, as it is for some of my friends, then I suppose it's my duty again, as it was with my mother, to expose you to a sampler plate from the blogosphere. Thus begins a rejuvenation here, a renewed reason to blog.

So, to start it all off, here's the latest Mark Steyn article. Did you hear that they're banning pigs in the UK (I heard it first via Hud)? The PC-meter just went to eleven. Since pigs are offensive to Muslims, you can't display any pigs in your cubicle at Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council, not even Piglet. And Burger King bent over backwards because someone complained that their new ice cream logo looked like the word jihad. I wish I were making these things up. Mark Steyn tackles the hypocrisy nicely in his article, saying:

Likewise, Piglet is deeply offensive and so's your chocolate ice-cream, but if a West End play opens with a gay Jesus, Christians just need to stop being so doctrinaire and uptight.

Some may say that the pig thing is only one officeplace in the UK, that we're blowing this all out of proportion. But this general pandering to Muslims has got to stop. When the villian in movies is the flight attendant instead of the Muslim passengers, when the memorial for Flight 93 is made to look like a red crescent, and when you can't have a Piglet kleenex box without someone crapping a brick, we're headed for serious trouble.

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October 04, 2005

CARDS ARE ON

Reggie Sanders + grand slam = very happy husband

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BAD SHOWER

My neighbor called because her hot water wasn't working. Mine seems to be just fine, but who knows how these screwy buildings work. I've lived here two and a half years and I still don't understand how to work the heater.

Anyway, as I was getting into the shower this morning, I remembered the strangest shower I've ever taken.

When we lived in France, my friend had a bizarre bathroom setup. Imagine a cross between a stand-up shower and a bathtub, and not in a good way. Her bathing apparatus was the dimensions of a stand-up shower but with the porcelain sides of a tub, reaching about three feet off the floor. So if you're standing in the tub/shower, the side of the tub reaches mid-thigh. And then there's nothing -- no curtain or door -- but there's a nozzle for a shower. There's a seat in the thing, kind of like a jacuzzi-style shelf. Oh, and in the middle, at about belly button height, there's a series of strings for drying laundry. Seriously. I wish I had a picture.

So one day I decide that my curiousity is too great, and I ask my pal to use her shower. I just have to see this for myself. And I proceed to take the most miserable shower of my life.

In my own apartment, the shower had exactly three and a half minutes of hot water, so I was not unaccustomed to misery. But the moment I turned on the water in my friend's shower, ice water sprayed all over me...and all over most of the bathroom too, since there's no curtain to control it. But since I'm an idiot, I didn't just shut it off and get out, oh no. I took the whole danged shower.

When I got back to my friend's room -- did I mention that she shared this monstrosity at the end of the hall with two strangers? -- I asked her if her water was always that cold. She said that it was never pleasant, and I could tell that she thought I was being overly critical. That afternoon she learned that the hot water had been shut off in the whole building, and I had indeed taken a shower that was worse than usual.

As if things could get any worse than that hybrid shower-tub.

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October 03, 2005

BIRTHDAY

Charlie turned six months old today. He celebrated by losing two more canine teeth. Only one more to go and then I'm free from puppy bites.

It's not fair that I expect him to be perfect already. I get so frustrated when he grabs the end of the toilet paper and runs under the bed with it, or when he eats a hole through the carpet, or when he barks at 0600 because he wants to play. It's easy to forget that he's made lots of progress: he can ring a bell to let us know when he wants to go outside, and he gets in his crate at night all by himself.

And he's always good for a laugh. The other day we were chasing each other around the house and he tried to jump out a window. A closed window.

He's a keeper...

sixmonths.JPG

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October 01, 2005

HEH

My husband got a real laugh out of this interview with R. Lee Ermey, G. Gordon Liddy, Evel Knievel, Merle Haggard, and Jack La Lanne. (But don't read it unless you can appreciate a man's man.)

MORE TO GROK:

Speaking of Liddy, CavX got interviewed by G. Gordon Liddy! Wow!

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SAME OLD SAME OLD

Sometimes I just get so frustrated that I don't know why I bother caring.

I was interested in reading this blog entry dubunking the recruiting slump, but as I dove deeper into the comments section, I found we're still arguing over whether Iraq had any ties to al Qaeda. My comments section recently went through a fight over whether Iraq had any WMDs. Everywhere I look, we're still arguing over the same fundamental differences in common ground that we've been arguing over for three years.

The straw that broke my back this morning was one quote from Kersten's article:

"The more play the press gives Cindy Sheehan," [Lt. Col. James] MacVarish concludes, "the better the terrorists' chances are of ultimately succeeding here."

We've heard this before, with CPT Powell being the most famous to point out the difference between the Iraq soldiers see and the Iraq the media sees. But this is nothing new; we've been having these fights with the press since the Tet Offensive. It's extremely infuriating to know that we learned nothing from the last time around. Negative press can lose wars, even if the military is winning. The thing is, I've heard this statement made in just about every letter to the editor and article written by people in the military, yet the media keeps ramming bad news down our throats. They completely ignore the men they're interviewing and continue doing whatever they want.

I'm just tired of seeing the same things played out on the internet over and over. Tired of every discussion turing into WMDs and Bush lied. Tired of reading scores of ignored soldier complaints that the media is being too pessimistic. Tired of nothing changing.

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