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Sunday, November 30, 2003

Between a rock and a hard place

Conservatives are so mad, they're ready to spit. Oh, Tucker's bowtie was all bundled in a knot this morning on the Chris Matthews' show and boy oh boy, Trent Lott was not happy. Why? Well, Lott made some mention of not wanting to cast aspersions on drunken sailors, but it has something to do with Congress writing checks and the White House happily signing off. 400 million here, 2.2 trillion there, fight AIDS in Africa, yessir, that's a roger.
But what does that mean for me?
The Simpsons long ago coined the term "tax and spend-o-crat" in reference to Springfield's long serving Democrat Mayor Quimby, but of course, it was eagerly adopted to include the Democratic Tip Oneill Congress, as well. And Democrats didn't mind the label. Walter Mondale bravely saying "Let's tell the truth. It must be done, it must be done. Mr. Reagan will raise taxes, and so will I. He won't tell you. I just did." Taxes -- to me they always seemed a small price to pay for services (like the East Coco Beach library being open for blogging on a Sunday!) and programs (like the educational loans and grants that paid for not one, but two Ivy League degrees. But now, the Republicans want in on the action ("if you want to win like FDR, you've got to spend like FDR").
I don't mind the government giving old people prescription drugs even though it has to deficit spend to do it -- but neither does the Republican party.
I look around and now I am standing on the side of Dennis Hastert, Zell Miller and *gulp* George W. Bush. Over there --- across the street with picket signs and rotten eggs are Ted Kennedy, Nancy Pelosi, Dennis Kucinich!
How did this happen? I'm fairly certain, I didn't move an inch. So are the Republicans moving to the left? What next? Support for the ERA? National health care system? Equal Opportunity for all...
I don't know, but suddenly the big elephant in the room that no one is talking about, isn't the growing deficit -- it's the entire Republican party.
Sure, from a political standpoint it bites to high heaven that they are pulling a Clinton when it comes to coopting traditional Democratic stances, but it's got to bring a smile to your face when the man that said that the U.S. government should not be nation-building or growing the government -- closes out the month with a speech from a U.S. military base in Iraq and tooting his horn for passing the largest expansion of Medicare in U.S. history.
:) Yup, makes me feel good inside.

Saturday, November 29, 2003


Brian Williams thinks it’s funny.

“President Bush is enjoying the rest of the Thanksgiving holiday at his family ranch in Crawford. As far as we know, that is,” he chuckled as he uttered that last line.
White House press corps has no idea what President Bush is up to, ha ha ha. We reported completely false stories all Thanksgiving morning, heee heee. What a chuckle.
The only joke is the modern-day media.
I don’t have a problem with the President and his staff’s cloak and dagger routine so that the President could safely travel to Iraq. That’s their job. Keep the President safe, keep the troops upbeat and get good footage for the 2004 campaign trail.
However, for the media (in my case the Good Morning America broadcast) to report, as fact, that the President was having dinner in Crawford…. Indeed, periodically updating me on the particular course being enjoyed by Bush at that very moment --- when in fact, no such meal was taking place --- is nothing short of disgraceful. Have our national reporters gotten so lazy that reading press releases from a teleprompter, passes for reporting?
If Woodward and Bernstein were dead, they’d roll over in their grave.
The press has such an important role to play in safeguarding our democracy. We would never have known about the Pentagon papers or the atrocities happening to the Civil Rights Freedom Riders without the unyielding persistence of the journalist’s pen and camera.
In this age of non-stop spin – the press is supposed to ask the hard questions, then do the grunt work and research to find answers. It’s not enough to sit still while Rumsfeld manhandles you at press conferences --- asking and then, answering, his own questions. No doubt, it’s hard and people in power are not going to be happy. But you have a public trust, not one that you were elected to, but one you voluntarily accepted.
Reporting fictional events is not just humiliating, (Dewey Defeats Truman) it’s appalling. What happened to the basic who, what, where when? Heads roll when reporters like Jayson Blair and Stephen Glass fabricate sources and invent details to add color to the fiction that they try to pass as fact, but what happens when every station, paper and newsmagazine report the same fantastical tale? Do we let them off with a wink and nod as we laugh off their culpability?
I don’t think so.
Nothing changes policy like shining the bright light of public opinion behind the closed doors of decision-making. But the people holding the flashlights have to be curious, bold and honorable. They have to be willing to work.
And if they aren’t, there are journalism schools filled to the brim with students eager to do the job.
Hopefully, the press corps has learned a valuable lesson from eating Thanksgiving Day crow and will now take their responsibility to the viewing public far more seriously.
Because right now, the White House isn’t laughing with you, it’s most definitely laughing at you.

Friday, November 28, 2003

No wall of shame for Clareified this week!
From The Truth Laid Bear's New Webblog Showcase:

Damage: Global Warming Catastrophe - New Evidence

Psyche's Knot: Black & Decker® - You're Scaring Me!

It's Ten p.m. Do you know where the President of the United States Is?

Too bad the rest of the troops can't fly out after lunch.

Thursday, November 27, 2003

Tomato, Tomahto, let's call the whole thing off

One of my closest friends from law school, was a feisty chick from Viva Las Vegas. She would constantly correct my Brooklyn pronunciation of her home state -- Nevada.
I'd say Nevada, rhymes with "baby father", she'd say Nevada, rhymes with "baby daddy."

I wonder if she'll read President Bush the riot act, too?

Actually, a partner at a New York law firm told me that he tried a case in Nevada and kept pronouncing it the Brooklyn (and apparently, D.C.) way and the judge corrected him twice, before threatening him with contempt fines, if he mispronounced the state's name again... trippy.

Oh, he got it right after that.

Nevada should just change the state's name to Las Vegas. Everyone can pronounce that.


(and heartfelt apologies to the Native Americans for the small pox blankets.)

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

The Vietcong killed him, too

I'm hoping this Drudge story isn't true.

According the report "unnamed servicemen" are angry because the remains of Howard Dean's younger brother were identified and repatriated with full military honors. The anger supposedly stems from the fact that he was a civilian and the remains of many dead servicemen are still unaccounted for. Of course, the younger Dean and his companion were reportedly killed by the Vietcong because they were thought to have been working for the American government. Thus, they ended up dying for their country in the same way enlisted men were killed, by the enemy fighting the United States. Draping a flag over the coffins seems appropriate. Why begrudge the family such a gesture?

President Bush said it best: "‘Fool me Once...shame on...shame on you...Folmuah can’t get fooled again’"

But this woman lived it!

Who knew you could get exemptions from federal laws?

The fat cats paying Senator Utah, that's who!
via Len

More Fun With Haikus

My shoes are too big
Other than that, I love them
But, still, it's a flaw


This is supposed to be one of the heaviest travel-by-car days of the year. Traffic accidents are the number one cause of spinal cord injury and one of the leading causes of death amoung people 25-50. So be careful on the road remember, it's better to get there late than to be "late" when you get there, if you know what I mean.

Helpful hints:

Go Slow -- posted speed limits are the outer limit, not a suggestion!
Hold Your Lane -- zig zags are for crossword puzzles
No flipping the bird or pulling out your glock on the highway -- self-explanatory

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Because I will do anything for a hit (and Rick says Haikus are in)

So Here's one:


Dawn is a bad friend
I should have returned her call
But I had Netflix


Remember the first Batman? Not the Adam West TV Show -- the cool, sleek, 1990s movie with Jack "wait'll they get a load of me" Nicholson and Michael Keaton? It had that Prince song "Vi-vi-vicky vale" and the Seal song.

Man, that movie rocked.
I had a Batman T-Shirt with the Joker on it (always love the bad guy, I do) and Batman sunglasses. I saw the movie, like three times, in its first weekend in release.
But now, as if Alicia Silverstone was not insult enough to the franchise, they've put Patrick Bateman into the codpiece.

For shame.

What has he done besides that horrible chainsaw movie, anyway?


I know it's wrong to laugh...

No, really. Wrong. It's really wrong. Stop it.

Givin' As Good As We Get

I WON AGAIN! I WON AGAIN! I WON AGAIN! My now exactly as-good-as-it-is-bad, team is now 6-6.

Monday, November 24, 2003


Patriot Paradox's kicks off the first ever Blog jousting tournament!

Monday Funday

All weekend I've been watching the talking heads debate the merits and dangers of allowing gay marriage. Personally, I don't see why the conservative right is so up at arms on this issue. From what I know about married couples, allowing gay marriage is probably the best bet for decreasing gay sex.

Sunday, November 23, 2003

President Bush makes a funny

In a speech during his visit to England...
"Known for his humorous one liners, President Bush could not resist making reference to the protesters in his speech. “It was pointed out to me that the last noted American to visit London stayed in a glass box dangling over the Thames,” said the president, making reference to the illusionist David Blaine. “A few might have been happy to provide similar arrangements for me. I thank Her Majesty the Queen for interceding.”"

Saturday, November 22, 2003

Brooklyn Nets

Boston has its "1918," Brooklyn has 1957. The year the Brooklyn Bums were uprooted and transplanted to LA LA land to become the L.A. Dodgers. I wouldn't be born for about another twenty years to parents who hadn't moved to Brooklyn yet, but still I was raised to mourn the loss. "That's Ebbet's Field," my mom says everytime we pass the housing complex built on athletic hallowed ground.

"Bastards," she predictably adds.

Well, according to newsletters from the Brooklyn borough President Marty Markowitz, the Mayor and the Governor of New York are trying to lure the Nets to Brooklyn!
I don't know if it'll heal the broken hearts of the Brooklyn Dodger fans, but I'm so psyched that we might be getting a pro Sports team of Brooklyn's very own!
If they sold shirts, I'd already have two!

Friday, November 21, 2003

Oh, yeah, I'm weird.

Via Annika

Are you a Woman of Color? Are you a Lawyer?

Do you like walks in the sunset?

Just kidding about the last one. But the ABA is looking for female attorneys of color to participate in its survey about women of color and the law. So sign up.

If you are a male attorney of color who likes walks in the sunset, e-mail me. :-)

I'm really having to resist those Pedro Martinez feelings....

I also can't help but feel like this mocks a time-honored act of liberation. Usually a statue that gets knocked down is one that some tryannical dictator put in the middle of town square to celebrate himself and intimidate the little people. It is usually a glorious moment -- a "ha, take that Mr. I'm all made of bronze and think I'm so great. I'm not afraid of you anymore." Would anyone think it cool to replace famous flag raising moments, like Iwo Jima or India's liberation, with made up, fake flags ... sheesh...

But seriously, why build a statue to tear it down? That's what effigies are for, easy-to-make, stuffed sheets with black magic marker saying who it's supposed be. No muss, no fuss. What do they do with that statue now?


Tell it to this guy.


I caught a bit of that Peter Jennings "beyond the conspiracy" special about JFK assasination last night. Did you know that whole Oliver Stone "to the back and to the left"stuff was made up? "Dramatic License," I think he called it.

I've been citing that whole Kevin Costner speech for years -- in middle school, I even had a visual redramatization of it all --- Damn you, Oliver Stone!

Next thing you know, I'll find out that Mel Gibson didn't really save the Allied troops at Gallipoli by running the message through the battlefield.

"Now let's see you do it!"


Then skip this post! No, I mean it! Read this post after you've watched it. Fine, keep reading, just don't send me your pissed off comments when the episode is all spoiled for you.

Do y'all remember the movie "Hook?" Spielberg, Dustin Hoffman, Mork? OK, well for those of you who don't --it was an early nineties Peter Pan movie imagining what would happen if Peter Pan grew up and left Neverland. (Basically, Captain Hook gets lonely without his nemesis and then sends goons to kidnap Peter's kids.) Anyway, one the recurring themes is that Peter Pan had this fight with Captain Hook where Hook was thrown into the water and a Crocodile bit off his hand (and then it swallowed a clock or something, that part I didn't get).
Anyway, Hook's totally afraid of this crocodile coming back for the rest him, I assume because the hand tasted so good. He then has the crocodile killed and stuffed, to make sure that it can't eat anymore of him.
Of course, at the end, through some calamitous twist of fate, the stuffed crocodile, it shaken loose and falls (mouth open, teeth baring) right onto Captain Hook's surprised body. The jaws snap shut and Hook is swallowed hole. The stuffed croc then burps in satisfaction....

Well, ladies and gentlemen, in last night's ER, the role of the good Captain was played by none other than the grumpy Dr. Romano, while stepping into the role of the crocodile: a crashing helicopter, come to finish the job of its hand chopping comrade in aviation.
Truly bizarre.
R.I.P. Dr. Romano...
Actually, given the circumstances of his demise and mutiliation, he's probably had enough of ripping...


I'm back! Oh, my beautiful blog, I will never leave you again. I was at a two day legal training conference on Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23. That's right people: two days, eight hours each day about a rule. Not just any rule, a civil procedure rule. A Federal Civil Procedure Rule. OK, I'll stop...mostly because there isn't much more to say. Although, an awful number of the panelists would begin their talk with the words "now, I could talk about Rule 23 (b)(2)(c) for days and we wouldn't hit the tip of the iceberg."
My favorite moment was when one of the audience members -- unnamed here for job security reasons -- fell asleep, only to be awoken when her coffee cup spilled hot, percolated liquid on her lap. Oh, I mean her or his.
The other thing I learned, besides a boatload about Rule 23 (and believe me I could blog about Rule 23 for...well, for like 2 more seconds before I'm going to have to gouge my own eyes out), is that blogging using dial-up blows.

Thursday, November 20, 2003

- Kashei

- Dawn

Apparently, the flipside is also true.

Wednesday, November 19, 2003


Every now and then, when I'm at my desk into the wee hours of the morning, proofing documents or wading through a morass of paper searching for the illusive needle in the haystack, I wonder: geez if I slumped over dead, would I want this to be the last thing I do? (A colleague of mine, who I shared this thought with once, quickly responded "as if doing this work weren't depressing enough, now you've got us dying of a heart attack.")
But, I do wonder how many people can say "if I died working, that'd be ok because I was doing something I loved or that made the world better." And don't think it'll never happen, because it does. These women died recruiting for their employer. Their colleagues had nice words to say about them, so I guess that's something.

Eh, what do I know? I didn't want a yearbook picture taken because I thought, for sure, it would inevitably be flashed on the 6 o'clock news alongside the story about my death in a drunk driving accident "just days before her high school graduation."

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Dear Gray,

Chin up!

I know how hard it is to lose your home state. Screw Arnold, no way is he going to be able to close the budget deficit or govern as well as you could have, had the voters given you a chance. He's so stupid too; he can't even pronounce simple English words. I don't believe the voters didn't jump all over the scandal that broke in the final weeks before the election.

You can't second guess yourself about how you used Bill Clinton -- spilled milk and all that. Try not to blame yourself too much, you did the best you could. (Those damn Bustamante voters are another story... just kidding its not their fault either.)
You'll be fine, oh the pity lovin' you're gonna get from the wife, ooh boy.
And let out your pantwaists. Believe me, the weight gain is going to happen, you might as well have clothes to wear.

Anyway, take care, if you need anything give me a buzz.

Your friend, Al

P.S. Do not, I repeat, do not grow a beard. The food particles from your depression-driven pig out sessions gets all tangled up in the hairs and it starts to smell after awhile. Plus, it burns like the Dickens when you finally shave it off.

Man stuck in phone, calls someone who cares

I don't know, but there is a cellphone commercial in here somewhere.

Jonestown Anniversary

"I don't think we have really learned anything from the massacre of Jonestown," she said, "because the Wacos are still happening. Heaven's Gate is still happening, September 11th is still happening."

I never knew that the Jones' followers murdered a U.S. Congressman and then forced people to drink the "kool-aid" at gunpoint. I grew up believing they were just wackos who wanted to die. No wonder the government takes such a hardline on the cults of today.

Random Thought # 6, 019

Transitcheks can't buy food. Not even in your office building cafeteria.


I WON AGAIN! I WON AGAIN! I WON AGAIN! My lowly team is now 5-6.

Monday, November 17, 2003


Lately, it seems that I can't surf the web without reading some blogger claiming that Democrats want "the terrorists" to win (Jake's comment here is fairly representative: "Democrats are praying that Terrorists all over the world win. They feel that it is their only chance to survive.").

Or likening Alabama Judge Moore's removal, to the first step in the ACLU's "final solution" for religion in the U.S. (This post is fairly typical).

Oh, let's not forget that cultural traitor, Michael Moore, (courtesy Jeff Jarvis) and now, I can add Strom Thurmond, er, I mean, Zell Miller, calling the non-confirmation of Judge Rogers Brown a lynching.
(I hope Justice Clarence Thomas is getting residuals on that one!).
Holy hyberole batman, has the Right lost it?
Democrats don't want the terrorists to win --- for the love of Mary, all but one of the Democratic Senators voted for the "Patriot Act" (Save us, Superman... I mean Russ), Sen-Ergizer bunny Schumer (seriously, he is everywhere at all times, doing everything) constantly calls for the Bush Administration to pony-up the cash to protect the nation's harbor and nuclear plants, not to mention deliver money to shore up our first-responders.
And even the Dems and liberals who want to see the Act repealed, do not favor repeal, so "terrorists win," but so that Americans don't lose -- liberties and rights and freedoms. I thought that living our American life was the best way to fight terrorism anyway?
The "doves" who oppose war, do so because they think that there are other ways to win the peace. (Interestingly, American blacks fighting injustice and terror, in the form of burnings and lynchings, (not the high-tech Zell Miller kind, but the dead body in a tree kind) in 1960s America, had the choice between winning through violence or nonviolence. I think we can all agree that the nonviolent, legal routes won the day and history and the judicial system have been merciless toward the ones that chose guns and bombs.)
Do we wish that the Bush Administration had finished the job in Afghanistan before leading the charge into Iraq? Yessir, indeedy. Again, not to score one for the terrorists, just so we're clear.
Fact is, there is nothing that will cement the President Bush re-election like another attack on American soil. The pols know how to play the fear card in elections like nobody's business (Willie Horton, white hands...boo! Osama's under your bed).
So, no, the Dems don't want the terrorists to win. We don't want them to win in the physical sense of blowing apart our people and infrastructure. We also don't want them to succeed in the erosion of our philosophy, principles and culture, either.
Speaking of which, "cultural treason?"
I don't have anymore than a layman's expertise in treason, but doesn't it involve playing both sides? Pretending to work for one side and then selling or giving away that information to that side's enemy? How on earth can that word, with any modifier, be applied to Michael Moore?
He says exactly the same things wherever he goes: Germany, London, Hollywood.
"Bush stole the election. Please help us, this banana republic is going to destroy the world, oh and give poor people a living wage."
Rinse, repeat.
Whether or not you agree with him, and just so Kashei (come to think of it, I've been defending Moore, to Not Geniuses' Ezra, as well) doesn't have to wonder: President Bush is our constitutionally elected President, I don't think the United States is on a quest for empire and I don't hate corporate America, Michael Moore is and always has been clear about his views - whether at home or abroad. And if he calls you stupid again just say what your mama taught you "I'm rubber you're glue, I graduated from college, did you?"
Besides, poor people should have a living wage.
Oh, and how come no one shouts about how Michael Moore, a Jewish member of the NRA, by the way, advises the Palestinians to adopt non-violent means in their conflict?
Now, I'm sure many critics will say: what about George Soros saying that President Bush and America are like Hitler and the rise of the nazis? Good, now, you're understanding me.
That talk is on exactly the same level as the hysterical ACLU=Nazis comparisons.
Do I even have to point out the lunacy of the "gal you're going to get lynched" talk from Zell?
Fine, look at the nominees that we're talking about: an african-american woman, a latino man, two white women and two white guys ( Only Estrada and Rogers Brown get any play nowadays, but I seem to remember Pickering is white and I assume we'd have heard if the others were judges of color -- if I'm wrong, let me know) It's a virtual Benetton Ad -- this has nothing to do with racial or gender bias.
Now, people weren't really blogging back then: but does anybody remember when President Clinton seemed to blame Newt Gingrich and Rush Limbaugh for the Oklahoma City bombing?
Silly, right? (Unless that needle in McVeigh's arm on June 11, 2001 really should have taken down the former speaker and current drug addict...)
So, let's all calmly step away from Ted Rall column (on behalf of victims of domestic violence, I've got to say that comparing him to a wife beater was terribly flip and inappropriate.)
These are serious disputes that a relatively young and powerful nation needs to have: what is the role of religion in our government, what is our place on the world stage, should politics be a factor in choosing judges, how do we protect ourselves from killers -- but if we are going to advance the discourse, we have to start from a place of mutual respect or at least one of calm reason.
Otherwise, we've just got Hitler's nazis lynching wife-beaters, so that the terrorists win.

Sunday, November 16, 2003

Random Thought # 5, 999

How many grams of carbs are in the body of Christ?

Dear Couple Making Out in the Second Pew at Sunday Mass Today,
Get a room.
Wait, sorry: get a room that isn't filled with parishioners, crucifixes, statues of the Virgin Mother, an altar and a priest.

Or sit in the back. Geez.



Blanco wins Lousiana Governor's Race

Now, Jindal can't even cry if he wants to

What ever happened to...

K-Ci & Jo-Jo?

Saturday, November 15, 2003

China's just always got to outdo the U.S.

We have a 48-people-serial killer, so they've got to have a 68-people serial killer.

Votes for The Truth Laid Bear's New Webblog Showcase:

Open eyes, open ears, open mind: Let's See Some OUTRAGE!!!

And Then...: Late Night With Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist

Bawstin Tech Pundits: TV On Cell Phones?


Last night, I watched the 20/20 Special on Teflon. They reported that the fumes from teflon coated pans on the stove can kill birds, give humans a two-day ailment which mimics the flu and that a chemical from the coating is measurably present in all of our blood! Now, as the Kennedy assasination anniversary approach, I know my conspiracy theory levels are probably elevated, but how can the Federal Government say that we shouldn't throw away our pans, carpets and Gore-Tex clothing, while at the same time admitting that they are undergoing intense, expedited investigations into the potential hazards of these chemicals?
More on Teflon here:

Random Thought # 5, 918

Maybe we should have national elections on Saturdays. Or on a range of days like Thursday - Saturday. Let's see how it works out in Louisiana.

Friday, November 14, 2003


Open Source Politics named Clareified in its "Best of Blogs" feature, here!


Lileks on the Senate:

" In short: is the world’s greatest deliberative body really filled with this many dim bulbs, card sharps and overstroked dolts who confuse a leaden pause with great rhetoric?"

Lileks on Americans: "Michael Moore went to Germany and slammed America up and down for all the usual reasons – we don’t have passports! We only speak English! Our stupid minds! Stupid, stupid! We’re not like the cultured Europeans, who – aside from their occasional continent-shattering spasms of facism – are the epp-ee-tomay of culture and enlightenment."

Is it me or should he stick to bounty towels and stories about firing kung fu ninja stars at tourists?


Before I had a blog of my own, I used to guest blog here and here. But my editor was a right-wing hater of everything good and pure (for instance, On Jesus: So you're telling me after all that, nailing to a cross and resurrection, he just up and flies away? And now you're waiting for him to come back?), so I decided to get my own show. But I liked the idea of guest bloggers and so, without further adieu, my first guest blogger!

Or a segment I'd like to call "Roam If you Want To" by J-Roam:

Think about the names of military operations.
"Desert Storm", "Desert Strike", "Iron Hammer".
Is a name implying and connoting such force really necessary? I mean, it's the U.S. military after all, creators of "shock and awe". Does a juggernaut operation name give them any more power or more of an advantage? And, does it, in the long run, hamper our public relations efforts or our invincible image if such an operation-to-end-all-operations doesn't work?
So I propose new methods for naming U.S. military operations:

Rhyming: Operation kitten's mittens, Operation Eddie Spaghetti, Operation Shmoperation

American Icons: Operation Oscar Meyer Weiner, Operation Have a Coke and a Smile, Operation Can You Smell What the Rock is Cookin'?

Children's Songs: Operation Knick Knack Paddy Whack Give a Dog a Bone, Operation Mares Eat Oats and Does Eat Oats and Little Lambs Eat Ivy, Operation There Was an Old Woman Who Swallowed a Fly

Pop Music: Operation Tiny Bubbles, Operation I'm F***in You Tonight, Operation Cry Me a River [Editor adds: Operation Ignition (the Remix)]


Yesterday, the wind in NY was so strong, that when I opened the car door to exit, it richocheted close slamming into my head and pushing me back into the seat. After one or two more rounds of this, I finally had to crawl out the other side of the car.
I still feel like I have a black eye. (No, really no one is beating me, officer. It was just really windy. Thanks, I will call this number when I'm ready to get out of my abusive relationship.)
Just two weeks ago it was 70 seventy degrees and sunny. Now there's bitter wind and upstate has got snow!

Well, at least we aren't getting the California fires and floods or suffering the rain of frogs that visited Connecticut.
Yup: wind, freeze, fire,flood, frogs.... what the hell is going on?
Oops... I mean, heck... what the heck is going on...
um.... I've got to get out of the way of the lightening now.

Thursday, November 13, 2003

Stella Ritter Can't Catch a Break.

Now the poor kid's lost her Gammy.


OH NO ... not my comment section

Bloggers beware... spam is coming and I'm not talking about a yummy pork treat.

Recently, his site has been getting remarks like "Thanks for the information!" and "Sounds great!" They're not from supporters, but from people — or machines — who leave names like "Generic Viagra," "Online Gambling" and "Free Poker" and links to unsavory sites.

Spammers are flocking to new communications tools like moths to light, threatening to cripple these tools just as they are beginning to take off.

Thanks to frequent lurker, Number One Mets Fan for the link!



A 7-year-old boy accused of molesting a 5-year-old girl earlier this year will go on trial next week.
The Morris County Prosecutor's Office accused the Kinnelon boy and a 15-year-old neighbor of improperly touching the girl on May 8. The teen pleaded guilty to a disorderly persons charge of harassment by offensive touching and is now serving a year on probation, but the boy rejected the same plea offer.

In other news, a Pennsylvania judge will treat the alleged sodomy acts of some NY high teens during a football hazing, as juveniles.

I don't remember when the war against crime began its march into the high schools and junior high schools, in law school I worked on an appeals case for a teenager on death row in Louisiana, but I certainly never imagined imprisoning children would become as widespread as it has -- New Jersey for goodness sakes? (Exit ramps and big hair jokes aside.)
Lionel Tate(killed a playmate with WWF wrestling moves, Mitchell Johnson and Andrew Goldman (Arkansas middle -schoolers who killed a teacher and four classmates), the six-year-old accused of killing his grandfather this week. It's hard to say what justice is when terrible crimes are committed by children, but we certainly can't keep jamming them into the square holes usually reserved for adult offenders.


I hate when people call when I'm watching TV, though. Registration is required, so I'll give you an excerpt of the good news:

By way of mobile technologies and agreements forged by Idetic, a Berkeley, Calif., wireless content developer, live television broadcasts can be watched on the tiny full-color screens of handsets like the Samsung VGA 1000, A600 and Sanyo 8100. Called MobiTV, the live steaming service offers a dozen channels, including MSNBC, CNBC, Discovery Channel, ToonWorld and the Learning Channel.

Courtesy of AND THEN...
This morning I watched Jake Tapper do a segment on GMA about this. The funniest was Sen. "Homosexuality = Incest" Santorum, commenting that 1) Coffee makes him "yyiiiee" (as he twirls his head all around and shakes his hands, just in case 'yiieee' wasn't clear enough) and 2) The springy cots wheeled in for the yakfest are really "bad."

Yup, government at work, people. Government at work.
"Yyyiiiieee," indeed.



Random Thought #5,768

Have you ever been in the middle of a conversation with someone and, as your mind wanders away from whatever they are jabbering on about, you realize: hey, if he suddenly burst into flames, putting him out wouldn't even cross my mind. I mean, there he'd be, all engulfed in a blazing inferno, and I would be thinking, 'better get outta here before I catch.'

E-mail I received yesterday

REF NUMBER: OSL/653/029/003
Email: swisslottery2003@tiscalil.co.uk
We are pleased to inform you, THAT AS A RESULT OF OUR
RECENT LotterY DRAWS HELD on the 13th of OCTOBER 2003.
Your e-mail address attached to ticket number
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First, I'm going to buy a Hummer.... no TWO HUMMERS.... no, TWO HUMMER TWOS!

Remember This?

I ran across this story about President Bush's first visit to New York. He had already visited about three quarters of the other states in the Union, as well as some Eastern European nations, before making his way to the small, eastern seaboard state of New York.
Oh, the promises he made!
As South Park's Stan would so say: So September 10th.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

So there is no misunderstanding who the audience was 2

In Arabic, Arafat declared:

"We do not deny the right of the Israeli people to live in security side-by-side with the Palestinian people that is also living in their own independent state," Arafat said in an address to parliament.

"The time has come for us to get out of this spiral, this destructive war, that will not bring security to you or us."

Well, it's a start anyway.


My friend Dan is the manliest man that I know.
I'm not talking burly, hairy tough guy- manly. But of my friends, he possesses the greatest concentration of traits most often associated with the male of the species: he has a mastery of every sports statistic ever collected, will eat/drink anything, has ate/drank everything, has a moneyclip, doesn't do musicals or movies starring Meg Ryan.
Get togethers at his place involve Mike Tyson or some equivalent pounding the stuffing out of some other guy on the tube.
Birthday party = bowling alley. (By the way, I'll be there if I'm not working!)
I often think of him when watching the Queer Eyes transform the weekly Straight Guy.
Ha! Carson would never get Dan in that store or to that hair salon, or doing whatever that culture guy is supposed to do for them.
No sirree bob, Dan's a full-on guy.
And in case I wasn't absolutely certain of that before, the fine gentlemen at Men's Journal have given me the proof.
In discussing their Top 50 guy movies, the editor says
"A lot of people thought "Caddyshack," [a] Bill Murray movie, should have been No. 1. We argued that. "
No way.
Not "a lot of people"* ...guys, not just guys, guy-guys...Dan.
Check out the rest of the article here.

*I feel like I should put some disclaimer or caveat about being pretty tom-boyish myself and knowing that there are women out there who probably love this movie, just so I don't get slaughtered with comments to that effect ... but then I think of how gross that damn 'chocolate bar at the bottom of the pool' scene is and decide against it.
Besides, I love comments.


McDonald's may come after this blogger next!

Tuesday, November 11, 2003


I have friends who are convinced they are never going to get married because everyone is already taken. Not so!

Although now that Buddy's gone, maybe it is true. OK, back to Plan B.


Art Carney Dead at 85


Gas prices in East Coco Beach: $1.89

Thanks to J-Roam for the Reminder.


Durst is not guilty.


(Please insert a bathroom mirror and a hairbrush to get the full effect)

First and foremost, I'd like to thank God for the opportunity to blog, this award would not have been possible without him.
I would like to thank my mom for all her support and of course, my friend Pandavox and his girlfriend for naming and maintaining Clareified in its early days (and yesterday).
Of course, I have to give a big shout out to everyone who has Permalinked to me, especially the juggernaut that is the League of Liberals -- wow, if registered Democrats voted with this kind of solidarity we'd all be wondering if Vice President Lieberman will remain on the ticket in '04.
But above all, I thank my readers, without you all, blogging would be no more than ranting out loud in the streets and I promised the N.Y.P.D. that I wouldn't do that anymore.

Can stand up, Will stand up

Television puts me to sleep most nights and wakes me up in the morning. My own personal Everybody loves Raymond lullaby and Good Morning America alarm clock. Television timers are a Godsend.
This morning, in honor of Veteran's day, I suppose, the morning shows highlighted the Glamour awards presentation featuring Shoshanna Johnson and Jessica Lynch. Lynch glowed in a formal, gown, while Johnson beamed from beneath her military uniform. Both stood side by side representing women in the military and calling girls to become the future women in military.
Oddly, enough I also caught the last twenty minutes of the Buffy series finale, on F/X.
If you haven't yet seen it and planned to, close your eyes.
In her final battle against the evils of the Sunnydale hellmouth, Buffy turned the 'one girl, in all the world' prophecy on its head.
"My power will be our power ... any girl who might be a slayer, will be a slayer...can stand up, will stand up!" she voicedover as Willow magicly distrubuted the Slayer's essence to girls all around the world.
"Are you ready to be strong?" The series asked one last time.
Hell yeah!
So it's cool to see that it's not just babes being strong on television, there they are standing tall in all facets of American and international life.
Yesterday, without comment I posted the photo of the winner of the "beauty for a cause award, Miss Afghanistan, as I worked through my ambivalence about its meaning.
Well, this morning as I rewatched Buffy save the world again, in her stylish, yet not- so-sensible boots, I realize that Miss Afhganistan is showing her own brand of courage.
Can stand up, will stand up: in heels, combat boots, high tops on the basketball court or pink sneakers in the office.
"What are we going to do now?" My namesake asks our heroine at the episode's end.
Whatever, the hell we want to Dawn, whatever we want to.
Aw crap, it's 9, I better go brush my teeth.
Yeah, I'm bad.

P.S. Did anyone else notice that Buffy's last word on air was "Spike?"

Monday, November 10, 2003

Governor Lieberman?

Felonious Elephant has a great post about Connecticut's Governor and his ties to Enron. More pressure should be brought to bear on Rowland to resign and then maybe Senator Joe can finally realize his dream of being a governing executive!


I WON AGAIN! I WON AGAIN! I WON AGAIN! My lowly team is now 4-6. Uh-oh, I still have the Eagles Def and Thrash to play ... could they possibly lose me 10 points? Yikes!

Advancing Women's Rights, One High Heel At a Time


Is Al Gore planning to get in this race after all? Starting to look like it....

Sunday, November 09, 2003


He may not win the Democratic Party nomination, but Dennis Kucinich may find his first lady. Here's the first presidential personals:

"As a bachelor, I get a chance to fantasize about my first lady," Kucinich said. "I would definitely want someone who would not just be there by my side, but be a working partner because I think we're in a day and age when partnerships are imperative to making anything happening in the world."

"And I certainly want a dynamic, outspoken woman who was fearless in her desire for peace in the world and for universal single-payer health care and a full employment economy," the four-term congressman told the forum. "If you are out there call me."

Saturday, November 08, 2003

I learned something very valuable about myself today.
Given the choice between "a man, rich and stupid" and a "good man, one of those is hard to find" for my ideal mate, I chose the former.
Now, what's important is not the choice, but the fact that it took me a full minute of going back and forth between the two and then with a cavalier "who am I kidding?" I clicked on rich and stupid.
Yup. Very important lesson for Dawn Summers.
Now, I've got to go find some Flannery O' Connor literature to read.
Flannery O'Connor
Flannery O'Connor wrote your book. Not much escapes
your notice.

Which Author's Fiction are You?
brought to you by Quizilla



I may very well have to subscribe to Showtime now to see what all the fuss is about.

Miracle Toddler

Maybe she was a cat in a former life

Friday, November 07, 2003




My history professor in college used to wax poetic about the early American pioneers.
"These are people who would stand in the town square for hours debating tariffs. Unlike you simple-minded twits who dose off fifteen minutes into my lectures."
Ok, he never said that last part, but oh, he had a glare on him that said enough.
But I think it would warm his cuckolds -whereever those may be-- to know that in the blogsphere there are people willing to spend days debating national and international issues. I learned about the concept of open public spaces from a friend of mine who wrote a paper in law school about how they were disappearing. (Incidentally, she would like to say that while she is single, she is not a cradle robber.) Anyway, she loved watching films in NYC movie theaters because the audience was vocal and the experience quickly becomes interactive. In many ways that's also the beauty of the blogsphere, without the popped kernels thrown at the screen. Non-violent, witty, thoughtful repartee... So what do y'all think about those tariffs?

Thursday, November 06, 2003


When it comes to attracting young, single college grads, New York City is a chick - and guy - magnet, according to a new Census Bureau report.
The New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island area ranks fifth of the 20 largest metropolitan areas in the United States for having young singles with degrees, age 25 to 39, move in between 1995 and 2000, the U.S. Census Bureau said yesterday.

For more on the trend.


Second Federal Judge Lays Down The Smack


I got around to watching the "very special" episode of 8 simple rules last night. There are, oddly enough, 8 simple rules for doing a television show about death.

First, the victim is usually on the way to the store to pick up milk. See Leary, James (Dawson's Creek)
Second, the last words ever said to the victim is usually something horrible. See Silver, David to his friend Scott (90210)
Third, one of the kids is always angry at the victim for dying. See Tanners, The (Full House)
Fourth, long lost family members come in as replacements. See Mills, Stephanie (All In The Family)
Fifth, slow, tight camera shot of the victim in an old picture. See Hartman, Phil (Newsradio)
Sixth, powerful use of silence. See Summers, Joyce (BTVS)
Seventh, God or life gets a good yelling at. See Bartlet, President (The West Wing)
Eighth, the victim reaches out from beyond the grave to comfort those left behind See Chandler, Catherine (Beauty & The Beast)

They played by the rules and a TV icon got a fitting farewell. Pass the Kleenex.

Random Thought #3,474

Wouldn't it be cool if William B. Davis (Cigarette Smoking Man) was the villainous head of the new evil syndicate on Alias? He'd kill Sydney so fast, she wouldn't have time to utter "Dad, I have to know where I've been for the past two years."


Last night's Smallville featured Clark and Lana starring in a murder mystery from the past with the soundtrack playing "I only have eyes for you." I wonder if Joss Whedon will get residuals when the episode runs in syndication.

Wednesday, November 05, 2003







Rocket Penguin
: Who Da Pope?

Mr_Cranky: A Halloween Story

Trials and Travails of a Mayor: A short rational explanation of why I would do this.


The only New York City Councilman I could even name was James E. Davis. He spoke at my little cousin's 8th grade graduation. He had been a student at her Crown Heights junior high and spoke about how he made the unlikely leap into politics. Davis was eloquent and passionate, his love for his community palpable in every story he told about his youth. "This is just the first of graduations. I want you all to graduate from high school, and college and maybe graduate school ... you can be whatever your mind can imagine" He told the young graduates.
His brutal murder (is there any other kind?) this summer, just weeks after that speech, was shocking. I was glued to the television as the drama unfolded. I watched the stories about his assailant, about the heated campaign, and I watched his brother's appearances on behalf of the family. Grief stricken Geoffrey Davis went through the stages of grief in the public eye. It was heartbreaking.
But when he decided to run for his fallen brother's council seat, as part of his family's healing process, I hoped the people of Crown Heights would see that the true heir to James Davis' mission wasn't another Davis, but another James: Letitia James.
Her victory last night is a positive step for Crown Heights. She will be able to handle the intricacies of governing better than Geoffrey, who at times during the campaign already seemed over his head. Hopefully, the Davis family can take some comfort in knowing that had he lived, James Davis would have coasted to reelection, but now Crown Heights has a new leader, ready and willing to push for the needs of the Crown Heights community.
Just like James would have wanted.

Random Thought # 3,408

Wouldn't it be cool if Camrym Manheim was the new A.D.A on Law&Order SVU?


So, I totally lost my way;
Shaheen turned nineteen yesterday




Whenever I pat myself on the back for doing otherwise ordinary, expected tasks, my friend mockingly asks "So? Do you want a cookie?" The derision has never stopped me before, so here goes:
It was raining in NYC last night, not a downpour, but that hard mist that blows everywhich way making sure that, while the top of your umbrella is untouched, your body is drenched front to back and through the tips of your toes. Plus, compared to yesterday's record breaking heatwave, it was freezing; oh, and I have a horrible cold.
It was also election day.
I decided to skip it altogether... But, then signs started: campaign posters at first, then the newsstories and commercials. I went out to pick up some medicine and the pharmacist shouts after me:
"Don't forget to vote 'no' on question three!"
Damn you all to hell, I'm cold, wet and sick. Leave me alone.
I was resting comfortably until the phone rang and it was a pre recorded message reminding me to vote for Yvette Clark for city council.
I looked at the clock and realized my mom should have been home an hour ago... Finally, I hear her keys in the lock and go to open the door.
She's standing there drenched, with the mail in her mouth, her purse in her left hand and her cane in the other.
"Where've you been?" I asked accusingly. After all, she could have been well on her way to finishing up some chicken soup for me.
"I had to vote no on Question 3." says my sixty year old parental unit, who just last year had double knee replacement surgery.
I throw on my sweatpants and my old navy hoodie, shove my feet in my gym sneakers, grab my coat and umbrella and head over to my usual polling place.
If the universe wants me to get tuberculosis from the rain and die a horrible death just to derail Mayor Mike's attempt to nix citywide primaries, then so be it!
I get to the elementary school cafeteria, where I always play Giant as I make wide, stomping steps past the wee water fountains and mini tables and chairs -- but it's empty.
"Voting is in the gym, this year. "
"Okie doke," says the Giant to the security guard looking at me quizzically as I stomp through the cafeteria. He should be thanking me, I could have crushed him and his tiny village of tables and chairs with a flick of my pinkie finger.
But nevermind. I walk out, all human-like, since I can feel him staring at me as I go, and head for the gymnasium.
"No street shoes! Stop when the teacher yells 'Freeze'!" Advises the crayon written rules on the door.
I walk inside and look for District 40 (the notice mailed to my house, said I was in District 40.)
71 ... 89 ... 41... 68 ... 92... 88 ... hmmm... well, maybe it's behind 41.
"Hi, I'm here to vote. Where's District 40?"
"Ain't no District 40."
"Ok, then, where do I vote?"
"Go to that table and give her your address."
She was stern. I don't think I could have crushed her. I head over to "that table" and give my address.
"Hi. I'm here to vote."
"Do you have ID?"
I hand over my Driver's License.
"What's the last name?"
(Er... you have my Driver's License ma'am...)
"OK, you're in District 68."

"Hi, I'm here to vote."
Mr. District 68 alerts the rest of the table that they "have a customer." The chatter stops and all eyes look at me.
"You supposed to vote here?"
"Well, that's what 'that table' said."
I hand over the license again.
"Hmm... no, you over in the other District 68"
"Other District 68?"
Her, 17 inch long, multi-colored fingernail pointed toward the far back corner of the gym, lo and behold *another* 68 hung from the booth.
"I'm here to vote," I say for the third time and hand over the license without being asked.
She gives me the signature book to sign below my signature on record. And there it is: the signature from when I first registered to vote in East Coco Beach. I signed all carefully, so that the letters were legible, included my full middle name, and appropriately spaced out all three names.
No time for that crap tonight. I scribble my usual first initial, last name scrawl and start reading the ballot.
Huh, look at that. There are a whole bunch of questions and I have to pick judges and there's Yvette Clark... she's running unopposed. What the hell did she call me for? Geez.
I walk in the booth and suddenly I'm glad I'm there. The curtain closes behind me, I pull the lever, I look at all the choices. OK, which answer on the proposal will result in the wealthy being taxed the most to give money to public schools? (My mom used to tell me, if you don't understand the question, just vote no.)
I pull down the little black keys.
Done and done.
Hooray, I'm a good citizen.
Now, where's my cookie.

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

First Legal Victory for Clareified?

Slick Rick To Be Released From Prison


Knicks winning steak starts at 1


Ralph Maccio turns 42 today! Who can believe it?

Monday, November 03, 2003



Random Thought # 2,078

Why doesn't the spellcheck on Blogger recognize the word "blog?"


I WON! I WON! I WON! My lowly team is now 3-6. Uh oh, my opponent still has the Broncos Defense to play. Crap. Could they possibly score 8 points? Yikes. Fingers crossed.

Sunday, November 02, 2003

Death By Invitation


When George W. Bush callously uttered:

"There are some who feel like that conditions are such that they can attack us there," Bush told reporters at the White House. "My answer is 'bring them on'. We have the force necessary to deal with the situation."

I wondered what the hell he was thinking. It may be acceptable for the leader of the United States armed forces to say if you attack us, we'll respond; but to invite attack, is appalling.

This isn't "swagger" or cowboy courage, (he's saying these things from the safety of a podium during a press in conference more than 6,000 miles away from the bloodshed in Iraq) it's destructive, childish taunting. Is there any wonder 'Bring It On' is the title of a teen flick about competing cheerleading squads?

A girl I went to high school with, an unabashed "I blog for Bush"ie, once posted that she wanted the media to publish pictures of the WTC jumpers, so that the American rage and thirst for justice would remain strong -- or something like that, you can click on the link and do a control-F search for 'squeamish' to read it yourself. Anyway, needless to say she supports all current military actions and would like the United States to take out Iran, Syria, North Korea, China, Cuba (and I'm pretty sure France) as soon as possible.

Yet her blog doesn't clamor for the media to show pictures of the lives (or deaths) of our soldiers in these many battle zones that we've opened up. Where are the pages of New York Times eulogies for those kids? Where is the wall of their pictures? And those for the Iraqi policemen, U.N. workers and Muslim worshippers killed by President Bush's invitation?
It's our turn to say, 'Bring Them On.'

Saturday, November 01, 2003


According to the EEOC, more women and minorities are working in the big corporate law departments!

So, now maybe when I go to hearings and depositions, people will stop telling me "Sorry, we already have a court reporter."
My first and favorite "hey, I am the lawyer" story took place in a bankruptcy hearing three years ago. The administrator asks all the lawyers to hand up their business cards, so he could have all the names spelled correctly in the transcript. I dutifully stood in line behind all the power suits, waiting my turn. I was second to last and when I got to the front, he said --- "sorry, miss, I need the actual lawyer to give me the card -- we have to make sure that he's really here." He promptly skipped me and took the card from the woman behind and me and turned away.
Okay, not a gender thing.
"Wait, Sir. Excuse me, but I *AM* the lawyer."
"What?" (Now he was peering down at me.)
"Here's my card. I am the lawyer. I have a Driver's License if you want to see it."
{If this is a nightclub, I am way overdressed!}
"No, that's alright." (He's still peering, but now he's reaching down to take the card.)

Once he has it, he holds it up, shrugs his shoulders:
"OK, I'll take it. You just don't look like a lawyer."

"Really? What does a lawyer look like."
"Oh, I don't know.... um.... it's cool. You're cool. I'll take it. Let's get started."

And away he went.
No doubt I still don't look like a lawyer, but at least now there are more people joining the profession who don't look like lawyers either.

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