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Wednesday, June 30, 2004

We are trying to get caught up after a splendid time in Chicago. Visited Amy and her new kitten in her spacious digs...enjoyed the free Lincoln Park Zoo and a garlic-laden feast of Spanish tapas at Emilio's. Sunday we went to the University of Chicago with its splendid lush campus of tall trees and towering limestone. Their Mesopotamian Gallery was stunning to view. I approached the 40 ton winged bull as astonishment washed over me- its mass combines with its delicate artistry in an unlikely union that left me speechless.
We saw the Magnetic Fields play at the Old Town School of Folk Music. I cannot think of the last concert I went to that made me laugh as much. Stephin Merrit's lyrics are droll and wry as well as poignent. "The Book of Love" is my favorite love song now, and Merrit said people are always asking to perform it at weddings...
While we ate plenty of tasty things in Chicago I did miss out on two items of wonderful caloric gluttony: hot dogs and deep dish pizza. No town does either quite like Chicago. The hotdogs are festooned with relish, peppers, tomato slices, celery seed, onions and mustard, served on poppy seed rolls. Of course, deep-dish pizza is served all over now but I think it's best in its hometown.

Thursday, June 24, 2004

Indiana Dirtier Than Most 

When you think about Indiana you think farms. But we have a lot of industry, or maybe just some very dirty industry. Toxic pollutants from Indiana industry rose 7% in 2002. Even while many Indiana factories were shuttered because of the poor economy.

"This is good news for all Hoosiers," state environmental Commissioner Lori Kaplan said in a written statement. Lori was speaking about the 5% decrease in cancer-causing pollutants. Lori Kaplan is currently looking for a post-public sector job where she can take her talent for glossing over the facts to the next level, corporate lobbyist.

Indiana ranks in the top for mercury hotspots. Indiana's coal plant emmissions went up in 2002.

"Driving Indiana's increase was AK Steel Rockport Works in Spencer County, which released an additional 7.9 million pounds of nitrates into the Ohio River in 2002. The steel-rolling mill quickly became one of the state's top polluters after opening in 1998 and has pushed Spencer County's rank to No. 1 in the state for pollution discharges -- followed by Lake County in northwest Indiana."

Read the Star's article

Monday, June 21, 2004

Left Foot, 5th Metatarsal 

The dancer will do a jig slamming his converse allstars into the ground to the weighty sounds of Solomon Burke.

SEE THE XRAYS under Photos and Video to the left.

So we dancing to Solomon Burke, and my dancing feet got away from themselves.
I snapped my 5th metatarsal like a twig.
The x-ray shows it plainly. Stress fracture.
Also known as a "march fracture" because recruits doing forced march sometimes crack it. Then the drill seargent runs over and starts slamming the dude for joking around and has him shot.

No, it is untrue that, as suggested by some, that Solomon Burke stepped on my foot.

Ouch.

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Bonnaroo : I did not go, but it sounded fun 

unless you were one of the two concertgoers who died.

Some Bonnaroo statistics compiled locally:

More than 1,000 employees on staff; 1,500 volunteers expected to raise more than $76,000 for local non-profits; 6,441,000 total wattage of electrical power generated; 50,000 gallons of fuel used; 39 miles of electrical cable; 217 telephone lines; 570 walkie- talkies; one million pounds of ice; catering kitchens feeding more than 15,000 meals to artists, crew and staff; 1,250 portable restrooms; millions of gallons of water given away free; 500 water stations; 10,000 feet of water pipe; 16,200 square feet of mist tents; 9,500 feet of plywood wall; 15,000 tons of rock laid for roads; more than 200 tons of recyclables to be collected.

Friday, June 11, 2004

"Greg's in the backseat. He's carsick." "That's a Pop-tart with Applejacks" 

All these years I thought I had a sinus headache.

Reuters says an Arizona neurology specialist says 9 of 10 suspected sinus headaches are actually migraines.

This jives with two headache and pain seminars I have sat in with.
Next time I start to go through my headache pattern of more than 3 headaches a week (not including those from drink) i am heading for the doctor for a script.

This certainly ties in with those gosh dangit headaches I get with motion sickness.

"In the IHS system, migraine without aura replaces common migraine. Four out of five people with migraine experience migraine without aura. This type of migraine consists of periodic headaches that are usually throbbing and one-sided, made worse by activity, and associated with nausea, and increased sensitivity to light and noise. Patients often refer to these headaches as "sick" headaches because of the nausea. The headache builds slowly in intensity and usually lasts from several hours up to a whole day. Patients usually prefer to lie down in a quiet dark room during the headache and often feel better after sleep. "

Thursday, June 10, 2004

oh ya he really stuck it to the poor those years 

ya reagan
boy he loved the rich too
too bad he really stuck it to the other folks somewhat

oops how could i have forgotten the gettin rid of the soviets in afgahnastan and boomerang back in form of al queda.

yep he was the gipper and wasnt perfect but after all he was part of hollywood.

all that glitters is surely not gold

the man was human lets remember him this way
not for the glitz of the spin for the republican party for the rich


yeah lets remember reagan 

the man who would ignore the little thing in the eighties which started as grid, which we know today as aids.
yes the same heads of chief that refused medical funding to prevent one of if not the most devistating diseases in our life time. yep the very man that gave arms and power to sadam .....
maybe i should stop old george might actual read this ...ha
what a joke who is he kidding
are americans really this ignorant

geeez

i am scared if only people would remember history and not for the catchy jingles
dang this whole thing is to try and re elect the most pathetic , self centered, mind dead man alive
what the hell lets just go and bomb italy for wine and france for cheese

does any of this really make sense

bombing for oil
lets take it hey if we remember correctly is sort of the american thing to do
wipe out whole race of people steal land

enslave other people
is sort of the american way
i guess take what ya want throw out the rest
geez

k am stepping off
the helicopters are outside for sure

people really think long and hard before u vote
that is if u really can cast your vote
yep thats right

they want to make it electronic cool
but hey lets recap a few novels
...
see
www.blackboxvoting.com
i think that we know the titles

451 for a hint


it is all so surreal

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

My brush with the Gipper 

• November 2, 1980 -- Visit just days before Election Day highlights Cincinnati's importance to the race. Reagan is flanked by Gerald Ford, Bob Hope, Charlton Heston and Hugh O'Brian. Gov. James A. Rhodes told the 5,000 well-wishers, "As Ohio goes, so goes the nation." He was right.

I was fourteen. My dad, a hardcore Republican, got us tickets to this event at the Cincinnati Convention Center. We drove over from Indiana to see Ron Reagan speak. It was one nutty excited crowd. These folks were excited. Heck, I was excited. This was the closest I had come to a rock concert, until the next year when I saw Men at Work with my sisters a couple of years later. And this rock concert had no rock.

Just Charleton Heston and Bob Hope. And a screaming crowd of older pre-baby boomers who thought these guys rocked. Especially Reagan. He rocked the most. He had these people in a frenzy. I got shoved up front where the featured guests walked onto the stage. Surrounded by several big screaming senior citizen women, I joined in trying to shake hands with Hope, Heston, Jerry Ford and Ron Reagan as they walked to the podium.'

With air horns blasting in my ears, I got several hard jabs at the guests along with the women that were jumping up and down like Beatles fans. It was fun. I didn't know what these people stood for. Well at least they said they were for America. And who could argue with Bob Hope and Moses?

Of course, if they were for America, did that mean Jimmy Carter was against America.
Cincinnati has always been the most solid Republican strong holds. The rest of Ohio was a bit more blue-collar Democrat.

---

This week as we remember President Reagan we will get to hear about his accomplishments, and some of his failures. We also get to hear about how overwhelming the support was for Reagan when he got elected. But if we look back at the actual numbers, we see it wasn't as overwhelming as it appeared. Of course, Reagan got a whopping majority of the electoral vote. 489 out of 538. That is a lot of electoral college votes.

But if you look at the popular vote, it is more interesting. Reagan got just 50.8% of the vote. Carter still got 41.1% of the popular vote, but that aint to good for an incumbent. Also of note is that John Anderson, the Independent candidate grabbed 6.6% of the vote.

--

In 1984, I am not a Reagan fan at all. But the nation sure is. That year Reagan grabbed a massive 58.8% of the popular vote, and 525 of the 538 electoral college votes. Mondale got 40.5 of the popular vote. But less 1% of voters chose an independent or other candidate.

I don't know where I am going with this. One thing I do believe is that the electoral college should be scrapped. In 1980 68% of citizens eligible to vote were registered. If you look at voter turnout in the 1980 presidential election, it was just 52%. 48% did not vote. I would not call that a mandate. Voter turnout for presidential elections are still low compared to the 1960s.

--

Currently with the electoral college, if you live in a state that votes with a majority in one direction (mostly Democrat or mostly Republican) and you don't vote with the majority, your vote is worth absolutely nothing on a national scale. In Indiana which has voted Republican in presidential elections for ages, my vote for Kerry in the fall will have no effect on the national total. I might as well not vote. It is a vote cast to the ground. The same would hold true if I would vote for Nader.

I will still vote. But many people will not vote. With the electoral college if you get the majority of votes, you basically get all the votes of that state, including those of the people who did not vote for you, or vote at all. That clearly gives a mandate where no mandate is due.

Many people bashed the electoral college in the 2000 election, because while Gore won the popular vote, he still lost the election. One good arguement for canning the electoral college is that it counts some peoples votes more important than others. "One person, one vote" is a nice model. But my biggest problem with the electoral college doesn't have to do with the 2000 election specifically. It has to do with the fact that this 'winner take all' electoral college system devalues the votes of all of the minority voters in each state. People who believe their vote is worthless on a national level do not vote. It is a national election. We should have a national vote not dependent on what state you live in. This is one important way to get more citizens to vote.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

I watched a robin chasing a fox squirrel with all of its might. That robin was mad.

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