Cheers & Jeers subsitute hosting on Daily Kos

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Because I promised I would share (though I did also write a Netroots Nation auction solicitation diary on Saturday, I didn’t necessarily want to to document that one for posterity). Posted at DailyKos at 6am pst since the kiddie pool dwellers start twitching if they don’t have their morning playground by 9am est. Bill usually posts at 8am so I couldn’t keep ’em waiting too long!

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From a laptop in a modest duplex in the lower left corner of the US (kitty-corner from Portland Maine!), I bring you a little taste of Spring to brighten your morning and provide hope to those of you in somewhat colder climates.

Disclaimer: I’m not Bill & could never BE Bill (though I might want to be him right now since he’s sipping umbrella drinks on the warm sand in Key West with Michael). ‘nuff said.

Now, who has the hammer for the gong? It was supposed to left right here…..shoot..well…maybe if I just whack it with my fist…Cheers & Jeers starts in There’s Moreville..[whoosh]RIGHT NOW![thud! OWOWOWOW!]

Cheers to the signs of spring in my backyard:
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Leaf sprigs that just started showing this week on my peach tree.

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Star jasmine blooming just this week making my yard smell so glorious!

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Calla lily.

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Color starting to pop.

Jeers to the horrible timing of each El Nino rain storm we are getting this winter. 7 of the last 9 weekends – specifically Saturdays – have been wet. And not just sprinkles wet, but steady rain/downpours all day bringing an inch of water or more every weekend. My son’s baseball team hasn’t played a game since early December – and in this part of country where they can normally play year ‘round, this is really frustrating!

Jeers to the utter lack of journalistic standards just about everywhere you look. Forget the obvious such as Faux News, I’m talking about a political writer at the supposedly grand old New York Times. Rumor and innuendo much sir?

Cheers to The Daily Show and this fabulous segment on Chat Roulette. Double Cheers to the folks who played along so hilariously: Katie Couric, Diane Sawyer, Brian Williams and Keith Olbermann. I laughed so hard watching this bit the first time that I scared the cats and woke up my son.

Speaking of cats and sources of laughter – Cheers – to the most Interesting Cat in the World! A cat who apparently goes by many names according to his human. He sucks fingers, trips up unwary owners, saunters around the house adorned in underwear headgear and has recently taken up fetching loose change around the house. Hence his most recent moniker #moneycat. Said pootie belongs to a must follow on twitter: @socratic – also his username here on DK. Seriously the funniest damn cat I’ve had the pleasure to meet on the innertubes.

Cheers to Keith Olbermann not only for his heart felt comments about health care and his father, but also for the other side of Keith that I’ve always loved: his baseball blog. His knowledge of the history of the game is probably only matched by the proprietors of the Hall of Fame. Speaking of which, his postings from this past summer when he got to pick through the archives of memorabilia were fantastic. I swear I could sit down with Keith and talk to him for literally hours and not once would we mention politics!

Cheers to safe flights bringing our two cabana boys home safely to us. While it’s an honor to step in for Bill so that he can enjoy some vacation time and still yet we can all splash around, there is nothing like the man himself. Gotta admit though, that 5 years ago when I started reading I would never have imagined I’d have the nerve to volunteer for this monumental task! I still remember those first round of subs in 2005 who bravely keep the pool open and thinking to myself “better you than me my friends!” Well, here I am now with the keys to sub-pool and I gotta say – it was fun!

So here you go all you Wankers, Spankers & Pervs – pools open – splash around and tell us – what you cheering and jeering about today?

Happy Cinco de Drinko de Adoption Day!

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I could also throw in Happy Gay Marriage in Maine Day since the Maine house voted to support a gay marraige initiative, but they still need the Governor to sign to make that Official so I’ll hold off the true celebration just yet.

No, what REALLY has my heart filled with joy is the arrival of Adoption Day for a wonderful Fmaily in Wisconsin. I’ve known Dan and Jen online since 2005.  Pastordan and Mrs P. The only church services I’ve attended the last few years are PD’s Interfaith Service gatherings on the Sunday of Yearlykos/Netroots Nation. They were blessed with their children two years ago. Read all about it here and here (with pics). Of course they have been a family from the start. But much like gay couples who have been ‘married’ forever, that validation from a judge and signing those official, legal papers has made it all seem that much more real and permanent. So Cheers to the Schultz Family on Adoption Day!

And hopefully Cheers and a wedding invite soon from a certain couple in Maine.

Oh yeah – Happy Cinco de Mayo too 🙂

In the news

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What started out as a reply to a Facebook thread has evolved into a blog post 🙂 But first, BREAKING NEWS for all of my LGBT friends. IOWA….freaking IOWA just broke through as the first non-New England state to stand for marriage equality. As I said on twitter – cheering the state with a generous helping of corn today! Woot! Like I said after the election, the backlash of Prop 8 in CA is that gay marriage became a national topic of conversation. I firmly believe that the smaller states one by one are going to tip the scales towards equality and lead the way on this issue.

Now on to my original topic. GOP insanity. Sigh….here’s what I wrote on Facebook:

“Lunch hour perusal of blog sites reveals that conservative media bypassed being good opposition reporting right to Loonville. Not shocked.”

and the longer follow up:

“Here’s the thing – I absolutely gladly listen to their take on issues because I love understanding all sides of things. But when the major spokespeople from the party cannot even make an *attempt* to make sense? That is just sad. I have some quite articulate *reasonable* conservative friends who should be the ones on TV/Radio/politicians – not this current crop of buffoons. Fox News is more of a joke than ever. Rush/Bill/Sean & Glen – oh especially Glen – are leading the way into insanity and ridiculousness. For heaven’s sake my sane GOP friends – take your party BACK! Please!”

I ran out of space to even get into how ridiculous the GOP *politicians* have been! The budget/not really a budget announcement? A joke! Seriously, if I was a Republican, I would be utterly ashamed at the leadership right now. I love our two party system – it is *supposed* to spurn healthy debate on all issues. Only right now the GOP is decidedly UN healthy.

Here is what I would love – a REAL debate show. Not that piece of crap Crossfire which was thankfully put to rest just after Jon Stewart tore it a new one. I hate the programs that feature blowhards from both sides just trying to shout louder over the other. Throwing out lies and straw men and personal attacks and playing the fear card at every turn. No, I was serious, knowledgable, respectful debaters. Here – I will even nominate someone from the left: Rachel Maddow – no one smarter, quicker on her feet or classier on our side.

Now, conservatives – tell me who YOU would want to see. No Big Egos only in it for the face time (Ann Coulter, Bill Maher and their phony touring debate come to mind).  Do you have a Rachel Maddow out there? Because I have yet to see/hear one. But I really would LOVE to.

And because all of this really started with my dear friend Bill in Portland Maine rounding up the recent mess of GOP insanity – I shall copy/paste it here as evidence of why I think they are in serious need of assistance:

Party leader Joe the Plumber doesn’t like the Employee Free Choice Act but he doesn’t feel like explaining why. Mainly because he hasn’t bothered to read it. He’s a busy boy, you see, and it’s very time-consuming to travel around the country explaining why he doesn’t like things he doesn’t know anything about.

Party leader Sarah Palin was invited and then uninvited to be the headliner at a national GOP dinner and was replaced by Newt Gingrich. Even though the Alaska governor claimed it was an innocent communication error, organizers refused to re-invite her because, of course, they only have two more months until the event and have already moved on to the blowing-up-balloons stage. But at least now Palin can devote more time to not accepting federal funds for wasteful things like schools and help for the unemployed.

Party leader Rush Limbaugh is using the flooding in North Dakota to make “dyke” jokes as residents of Fargo cope with the possibility that their town could be wiped out. Levity is important in times of crisis, especially jokes that makes fun of minorities. LOL, ladies and gentlemen!

Party leader Governor Mark Sanford of South Carolina says that accepting federal money for schools is a form of child abuse. And party leader Bill O’Reilly says people who use the internet are child molesters. Just a hunch, but I bet the dedicated medical and mental health professionals who deal with actual child abuse and molestation cases every day might beg to differ. Probably with their middle finger.

Party leader Rep. John Boehner approved a GOP budget proposal that basically says, “Let’s give the Bush plan another 50 years to work.” He was too embarrassed to unveil it himself, so he sent out his second-stringers to twist in the wind.

Party leader Senator John Cornyn hopes that Minnesota continues to suffer the consequences of having only one sitting senator, and threatens to launch World War III if Al Franken is seated. He’ll need a declaration of war from Congress for that, but I’m sure he’s got the clout to push it through. The tricky part will be drawing the rest of the world into a global fisticuffs over a U.S. Senate seat.

Party leader Rep. Michelle Bachman puts words in the Treasury Secretary’s mouth and then warns that America will cease to exist if he is allowed to do what he never considered doing in the first place. Got that?

And party leader Glenn Beck—who famously said, “[W]hen I see 9/11 victim’s family, you know, on television, or whatever, I’m just like, ‘Oh, shut up.’ I’m so sick of them. Because they’re always complaining”—continues to flog his “9/12” campaign which, as Stephen Colbert notes, “…is not for families directly affected by 9/11. Just people building their careers on it.”

I used to wonder what a political party would be like if it consisted of all the crazy aunts and uncles people keep locked away in their basements and attics. Mystery solved.


The thankful list + paintings

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  1. Family – though scattered around today, all are healthy and happy and safe
  2. A good man – hard to find and harder to hold onto, but I’ve managed it for another year 😉
  3. Friends – local and scattered, August moms, C&Jers, MTers, and bloggy types.
  4. My kitties – purr babies spreading fur and love every day.
  5. Insurance settlements – oh yeah.
  6. A secure job – double oh yeah these days.
  7. Twitter and facebook and texting and email keeping me connected to my scattered friends.
  8. This blog for providing a dumping ground for my thoughts and for inspiring me to express myself differently and to look at everyday events with a new eye.
  9. Finally finding something to hang on my red wall:

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And yeah, the next project on the list is replacing that ugly 80s style hanging stairway light.

Final pics from Austin

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From the last night on the town. Bill with a carriage pulling horse. He was so funny all weekend getting completely distracted by any and all furry objects!! It was really quite sweet. Then Bill with Kid Oakland. We met KO at a party being hosted by Jim Hightower who was very sweet and friendly though we clearly spaced on the whole picture opportunity with him!! Bill did get a signature in his Tip Jar book. The other picture I should have taken was of Sam Seder at the same party. Most particularly – Sam’s Gams 🙂 The next pic was from the hotel lobby later on when someone brought a case of red wine. That is Terry Pinder, Vicki, and Jerome a Paris enjoying the vino. Next is a photo from the Sunday interfaith service. It is the wall of names of the soldiers who have died in Iraq. A lovely tribute which they had displayed in the main convention area during the weekend. Then a photo of Bill with Grammy winner John Hobbs. At the end of the service, he sang this song for us and there was not a dry eye in the room:

Finally – a picture with me in it! As the day wound down yesterday and we all gathered in the hotel restaurant for a final meal before boarding shuttles or taxis (or in our case, Pastor Dan’s chauffeur service) to the airport, Bill and I spotted our blogfather, Markos (the kos in DailyKos) just hanging out at one table so we wandered over to bend his ear and yap about the convention and newspaper coverage of it, Bill’s employment contract, Bill’s idea to add an ‘ass’ button to ratings system (!!!), and my request that he come to San Diego to do a book signing on his next book coming out in August. Hey, what can I say? I don’t want to wait until Pittsburgh in Aug ’09 (next NN conference)!! So that is a pretty nice picture that Bill took of Markos and I and was a really nice way to wrap up the time in Austin.

I also lucked out by sharing my flight home with Jill (orangeclouds115). We had somehow not seen each other once in Austin, but then had the whole flight to compare notes of the event. THAT was fun. We may plan that again for next time since we clearly move in different circles and attend different sessions and it was fun exchanging gossip..err..notes!

*Yawn*

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Ok, I know it is the boys who are working hard, but I am wiped OUT! 5 days a week, 2.5 hours a day. I have to leave so early from work that I only have about 6-7 hours at my desk and combined with the year end audit and I have to focus extra sharp on my tasks. So I feel like I am on a mental sharpness marathon all day, then off to the races to get him to practice on time with everything he needs. I’ve come home to work more, or nap, cook dinner and just catch up on chores here the last three nights, but I stayed out there tonight to watch since they started with full pads this week and are now hitting at full speed. Coach and his wife bought pizza for the team and another mom brought cupcakes since it is her son’s birthday. Two boys had birthdays today and Sportboy’s is tomorrow. Speaking of – I have done nothing!! Usually I have presents bought and wrapped and a treasure hunt created. Hah! At least he understands. Part of it is that he wants a couple of new games for his PS2, but cannot remember the exact names. Since his birthday is on a Saturday, we will just go on a shopping spree together tomorrow after the hike at Torrey Pines. MusicMan has the early shift so he and my parents and Sportsboy’s dad will join us for a birthday dinner at Red Robin tomorrow night. He had an early party with family in Sweden while he was there. Plus, his dad and brother will plot a paint ball outing for him later. Either that or Dave & Busters. I told them to just take over since I really haven’t the time or creative energy to throw anything together. Poor deprived boy has not had a regular party with friends since he turned 9. But, it’s hard given the August date – so many are out of town. Combine that with his heavier sports schedule once he started football and it’s just really a challenge to throw anything together. He’s cool with it though. I’ve never been one who believed that you had to have a party every year anyway. I don’t really like it if kids *expect* it – it should be a treat.

Oh yes, and in case anyone wonders, this may be the only blog I am on for the next month. Work and football make it rather impossible to even read most of my usual sites, let alone participate. Take no offense, I’ll be back!

While I was gone, SweetPrince took care of my car (his brother gave it a full tuneup) and he brought home a kittie condo/climber. As you can see, the cats love it:

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This was a rare time when Chip came out on top in a battle. At the moment, it is Amber who is up there resting. I swear with these high ceilings that I could create kitty climbing heaven….but that might be a bit much :->

Sigh…it’s nice to be home and settling into the Football season (see post on My Current Seasons for an explanation). Tuesday’s after practice at Pat & Oscars with the team. Football gear bag out. Weekend laundry routine increased with the practice gear and taking pads out and then putting them back in. Scrimmages coming up. It’s awesome. BUT…I still have a sense of being in Chicago with my buddies. I swear I can close my eyes and be out on that patio with all of those awesome people. Wine glass in hand, hugs and laughter all around. I miss them!!! I am so bummed that they all otherwise live so damn far away from me the rest of the year. I swear between my August mom roommate and my sweet buddy from C&J that a large piece of my heart lives in Portland Maine. Good thing I happen to love it there! Good thing too that as the nearness of the C&J encounter fades, the August mom gathering approaches in less than two months.

Chicago bound

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The shuttle will be here in about 90 mins. It’s been a manic 48 hours of course. Work is blowing up. Talk about a horrid time to be gone. The auditors arrive on the 20th. They want schedules done one week before and yesterday my staff member who is pregnant was told they would do a csec either today or tomorrow!! She was counting on another week to get her reports done. Really, she should have been done by yesterday, but other departments just did NOT listen to deadlines and were still posting into her accounts yesterday!! We were pissed, and now I am going to really be pissed when I get back because I have to cover all of hers as well as my own. HELP!!!!!!!!!! I’ve been working from home all day today just to keep afloat. However, all that really matters is that her baby will be here very soon. Poor girl was so damn ready. Baby is breech which is why they are doing a csec.

Meanwhile, I had to get last minute checks out for the baseball club. One of the managers came by today to get those. I’ve had to scramble to arrange transportation to the hotel tonight. I land too late to catch any of the regular hotel shuttles, and much too late to try public transport which would require walking between train to bus and then 3 blocks to the hotel. NOT! So, I reserved a limo which is $$ but I would rather be sure of a safe ride! Besides, the flights are free thanks to FF miles so I am still doing well for this trip.

Sportsboy is dropped off at a friends for the day. He’s with the coach’s family so they will take him to practice and then his dad will get him from there. I dropped off all the necessary gear to his dad this am. Musicman has received his house and cat instructions for the weekend and SP will provide back up on those.

I’ve packed. Then re-packed when I got news from someone already there that the hotel conference rooms are frigid!

Mostly though, I am so JAZZED about this whole event!! So many wonderful friends from DailyKos will be there. The event calendar is packed with things I want to attend and it all starts tomorrow morning full speed. The site and the event have survived the attacks by Faux News and Bill O’Reilly 😉 All the Democratic Presidential candidates will be there for a forum on Sat night and THEN breakout sessions individually. I signed up to see Hillary. I want to figure out how to reconcile my doubts about her with the real possibility that she will gain the nomination. Plus – it’s Hillary Clinton! Love her or hate her – a VERY famous/infamous politician, a former First Lady and just seeing her in a hallway a few months ago gave me chills.  Some other members of the group will attend the sessions with Edwards and Obama so those will be covered for me too. Anyway, lots of fun I know. Look for us on the news! All the major outlets will be there this year. Thanks to Bill O for that! Wait until they see that we are all just a bunch of normal people. Ooooh…scary….!!!