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Thursday, November 13, 2008

Life begins at conception? I very much doubt it.

This last election saw, in several states, a proposal by anti-abortion factions to legally declare life to begin at conception. I'm sure they saw this as a means to prevent what they see as a great evil.

Here's why declaring life to legally begin at conception is a really bad idea.

First off, with all the new technology available, a woman can find out she's pregnant very, very early. And with this has come the discovery that an estimated half of all fertilized eggs (which would legally be equal to babies under the above proposal) simply don't implant, and pass out of the woman's body unnoticed. If God puts a soul into every fertilized egg, that's an awful waste of souls. I don't think God would be that wasteful.

Now: with a fertilized egg the equivalent of a full term baby, women who are having sex could easily be required to test once a week to make sure they aren't pregnant. Women who miscarry or have a stillborn baby would be under investigation for murder, adding to the terrible grief and guilt they already feel. Proposals have already been under way to equate smoking, drinking, and not eating properly while pregant to child abuse. How long before pregnant women are locked up and monitored for the entire nine months, if this amendment comes to pass?

If a fertilized egg is given equal rights with the woman who must allow it to grow inside her until birth, women will be reduced to walking wombs with no rights at all. Think this over, please! I don't want to be a slave.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Book review: "To Pleasure a Lady" by Nicole Jordan

Sometimes I'm in the mood for a real trashy novel. So I picked up "To Pleasure a Lady" by Nicole Jordan. Man, be careful what you wish for!

Nothing was wrong with the plot: Aristocrat Marcus Pierce becomes the guardian of three sisters, though all three women are over twenty-one. They're all marriage-wary because their parents hated each other, and their mom created a reputation-destroying scandal by running off with a commoner. They have started a finishing school for wealthy tradesmen's daughters, who are being snapped up by impoverished aristocracy for their money, but shunned in Society for their lack of the intricate manners. Marcus falls in love at first sight for the oldest daughter, Arabella, and sets out to convince her to marry him.

Then it starts getting a bit extreme. They set up a bargain. Marcus gets two weeks to woo her, and if Arabella turns him down at the end of the two weeks, the sisters have their freedom. She agrees. But rather than Regency-style wooing (yep, this is supposed to be set in the Regency) he sets about seducing her. And it's easy! One touch from the super-stud and she's a quivering pile of lust at his feet. They go at it like monkeys, in her home, at her school, out in the countryside where anyone could chance upon them. So much for being worried about scandal! Not to mention pregnancy. For someone who's very concerned about the reputation of her school, which of course is completely dependent on her reputation, she seems quite a little slut.

And then the descriptions of the sex scenes! They are so completely over the top they made me laugh, rather than turning me on. Rather than "ooh, that's good," and I read it to my husband, my reaction was, "oh, geez, you're kidding!" and laughter.

There are, of course, two sequels. Arabella has two sisters, and Marcus has two friends. Will I read them? Maybe, but I'll have to read some other books in between. Too much marshmallow fluff just isn't appetizing.

I still can't believe this woman best-sells. Yikes.

Thursday, September 25, 2008


I have a simple solution to who should pay for the bailout. All those CEOs whose bad decisions caused this mess should do their own damn bailout of the companies they ruined. And, if they have more than one home apiece (are you listening, McBushCain?) they should give them to people whose homes were foreclosed because of their bad management.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Republican Lie Machine Grinds On

There are no less than two books on the bestseller list that are nothing but long anti-Obama rants. The Republican Lie Machine is working its butt off. They had to really crank those suckers out, considering it usually takes a year from the time a book is accepted for publication and the time it's actually available.

In fact, the Republicans are beginning to go far enough in their dirt-slinging that they're actually turning off other Republicans! Locally, the chairman of the Bernalillo County Republican Party, Fernando C de Baca, said this: "The truth is that Hispanics came here as conquerors. African-Americans came here as slaves. Hispanics consider themselves above blacks. They won't vote for a black president."

He's been asked to step down as chair. Of course he's telling everyone that the remark was taken out of context. Can anyone give me an example of a context in which thost last two sentences aren't monstrously offensive? He claims he was speaking about the past. But note: "consider themselves" isn't past tense. Neither is "They won't vote." That's indicating the future.

Here's another thing predictiing the future: If McBush is elected, we'll get four more years of the erosion 0f our rights, the robbing of the poor to make the rich richer, and yet more Supreme Court justices who ignore the Constitution to support their lobbyists' agendas.

Vote Obama!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Parent's rights versus child abuse

In some beliefs I’m quite liberal, in others quite conservative. I support a woman’s right to choose to terminate an unwanted pregnancy, but I believe teenage girls ought to give their babies up for adoption, since they are unable to support themselves, let alone a child. That’s what birth control’s for, girls. Can’t feed ‘em, don’t breed ‘em. High school dropouts make lousy mothers and even worse breadwinners.

I support gay marriage, but my philosophy on marriage is “for better or for worse, till death do us part.” With a few exception clauses, such as physical or emotional abuse or chronic infidelity (if infidelity bothers the other party). Choose your partner carefully and then work at making your marriage into what you both want it to be, whether it‘s traditional or not.

I could see multiple marriage, trios or quartets, as long as women have equal rights to have more than one husband. What I can’t wrap my brain around is the rash of polygamous sects that seem to be organized very much like lions’ prides. In both cases, the Master Male basically fucks every female around, and drives out most of the young males. Since the gender ratio of babies born is only slightly more female than male, they have to push out most of their own sons to keep the female-to-male ratio high so they can have twenty teenage brides.

And that’s another argument against polygamy the way it is currently practiced in America: teenage girls, underage in fact, being told It’s God’s Will that they marry men old enough to be their father or grandfather. I guess the polygamists’ god really LOVES pedophiles. Of course the girls born into these sects think that’s perfectly natural, and evidently just can’t wait to Fulfill Their Destiny by popping out a baby a year.

This brings the argument around to a real hard one. Few people would argue that parents have an absolute right to bring their children up as they see fit, teaching them the values they hold dear. And everyone’s against child abuse. So where’s the line? Bringing up daughters with the value that their only purpose is to serve men and pop out kids is their family value. To me, that value equals child abuse. They also believe the biblical line of “spare the rod and spoil the child” and therefore beat their kids as punishment. Few would argue that beating a child is child abuse. But if your family value says that every word in the Bible is true?

Of course, atheists bring their children up to believe Jesus is as mythological as Santa and the Easter Bunny, and Christians think that’s child abuse. Christians teach their children to love/fear Jesus (depending on their denomination), and the atheists think THAT’s child abuse. Muslims bring their daughters up to believe their femininity is inherently sinful, and their body isn’t their own but belongs to the husband they will one day have, and Westerners think that’s abuse. We bring up our daughters to be independent and own their own bodies, teaching them how to be attractive, and the Muslims think we’re abusing them.

So, where do we draw the line between parent’s rights over their children, and child abuse? Hey, don’t even get me started on cutting up little girls’ vulvas to “prove they can stand childbirth” and “keep them pure.” Again, family values versus abuse. An accepted custom and traditional rite of passage to millions, the very thought it horrifies everyone else.

Even practices that were once common in America now sound abusive, such as putting children in “stays” (corsets) to keep their posture good. I can’t help wondering how, a couple hundred years down the line, what our descendents will think about some of our current beautification customs? For example, having bags of plastic poked inside the skin of our chests to turn our lovely soft breasts into giant hard globes, or injecting poison into our faces to reduce our laugh lines? At least we don’t do that to children. Yet. So far, we just let them have nose jobs.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Hair color and identity

Like most women, I've always had a love-hate relationship with my hair. I hated the natural curl for a long time. When I was little, older women always gushed over my hair and usually mentioned Shirley Temple at some point, despite the fact that my hair was dark brown and I didn't have dimples. I always wanted to kick them in the knee when they did that, but I was brought up to be polite.

Then when I got older, the sixties hit. All of us with curly hair had years of bad hair days as we fought to get it straight enough, in an era when straight-haired people were ironing theirs to make it even straighter. I discovered chemical straighteners at the age of twelve, and straightened my hair until my last year of college. By then, Afros had come into style for African Americans, and I rebelled. If they could wear theirs natural, why couldn't I? So I grew it out, cut off the straightened part, and had the best damn white-girl Afro you ever saw.

Then, two weeks after my twenty-first birthday, I found my first white hair. Coarse and stick-straight, I thought it was some foreign object that had wound its way into my curls, and yanked it. To my total shock, it was attached. I looked at this white, straight hair in my hand, and thought, "My God, I'm going to look like a dandelion." Fortunately after the first couple of dozen - all of which I pulled - they began coming in the same texture and curl as the brown hair.

First I put a henna rinse on. It gave my blue-brown hair a lovely chestnut cast, and disguised the white hairs. For a while. Then one day, someone asked, "What are all those orange hairs on your head?" I took a good look in the mirror under fluorescent lights, and my jaw hit the bathroom sink. It looked like a halloween wig.

So I washed out the henna and began having it professionally dyed back to brown. This was good for ten years. At that point, watching the white roots come in was very depressing, as well as unsightly. My hair grew very fast still, and it only took 2 weeks for the roots to show.

Being a low-maintenance kind of woman anyway, and having a mom whose hair has been pure white since she was 50, I decided I'd grow it out and have a look at it. When I couldn' stand the roots, I went and had the rest bleached, figuring blonde wouldn't look so extreme.

Yikes. It looked ghastly. Doggedly I left it, until I noticed that the bleached part had turned ORANGE. Ugh!!! By then I had a good bit of root, so I picked up a pair of scissors and cut off all the orange hair. It came out shorter than I usually wear my hair, but looked pretty good. Now I had a salt-and-pepper Afro. By then I was 38.

I left it alone for over ten years. And then I had a midlife crisis of sorts. And one cute man too many told me in a bar that I looked like 35 from the front and 65 from the back.

"Hmmm," I says to myself, "I've never been a blonde." Again, I figured the light color wouldn't show the roots so badly, and this time I wouldn't have to bleach it. So for the last four years I've been just about every shade of blonde offered in home coloring kits. I wanted Marilyn, but that color didn't look good on me. Actually, none of them really did, but I persevered. Now, I'm very tired of the upkeep, and tired of the color. I'M A BRUNETTE, DAMN IT!

And there's the rub. In my heart, and in my dreams, I still have dark brown hair. Since I can't have that any more, I'll go with the natural silver. Even if I do double-takes in the mirror for the rest of my life.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Sarah Palin Hates Native Americans

This is just to show you, this woman is just a typical republican who wants to stomp on the poor to make the rich richer.

Sarah Palin’s Record on
Alaska Native and Tribal Issues
1. Palin has attacked Alaska Native Subsistence Fishing
Perhaps no issue is of greater importance to Alaska Native peoples as the right to hunt
and fish according to ancient customary and traditional practices, and to carry on the subsistence
way of life for future generations.
Governor Sarah Palin has consistently opposed those rights.
Once in office, Governor Palin decided to continue litigation that seeks to overturn every
subsistence fishing determination the federal government has ever made in Alaska. (State of
Alaska v. Norton, 3:05-cv-0158-HRH (D. Ak).) In pressing this case, Palin decided against
using the Attorney General (which usually handles State litigation) and instead continued
contracting with Senator Ted Stevens’ brother-in-law’s law firm (Birch, Horton, Bittner &
The goal of Palin’s law suit is to invalidate all the subsistence fishing regulations the
federal government has issued to date to protect Native fishing, and to force the courts instead to
take over the roll of setting subsistence regulations. Palin’s law suit seeks to diminish
subsistence fishing rights in order to expand sport and commercial fishing.
In May 2007, the federal court rejected the State’s main challenge, holding that Congress
in 1980 had expressly granted the U.S. Interior and Agriculture Departments the authority to
regulate and protect Native and rural subsistence fishing activities in Alaska. (Decision entered
May 15, 2007 (Dkt. No. 110).)
Notwithstanding this ruling, Palin continues to argue in the litigation that the federal
subsistence protections are too broad, and should be narrowed to exclude vast areas from
subsistence fishing, in favor of sport and commercial fishing. Palin opposes subsistence
protections in marine waters, on many of the lands that Natives selected under their 1971 land
claims settlement with the state and federal governments, and in many of the rivers where Alaska
Natives customarily fish. (Alaska Complaint at 15-18.) Palin also opposes subsistence fishing
protections on Alaska Native federal allotments that were deeded to individuals purposely to
foster Native subsistence activities. All these issues are now pending before the federal district
2. Palin has attacked Alaska Native Subsistence Hunting
Palin has also sought to invalidate critical determinations the Federal Subsistence Board
has made regarding customary and traditional uses of game, specifically to take hunting
opportunities away from Native subsistence villagers and thereby enhance sport hunting.
Palin’s attack here on subsistence has focused on the Ahtna Indian people in Chistochina.
Although the federal district court has rejected Palin’s challenge, she has carried on an appeal
that was argued in August 2008. (State of Alaska v. Fleagle, No. 07-35723 (9th Cir.).)
In both hunting and fishing matters, Palin has continued uninterrupted the policies
initiated by the former Governor Frank Murkowski Administration, challenging hunting and
fishing protections that Native people depend upon for their subsistence way of life in order to
enhance sport fishing and hunting opportunities. Palin’s lawsuits are a direct attack on the core
way of life of Native Tribes in rural Alaska.
3. Palin has attacked Alaska Tribal Sovereignty
Governor Palin opposes Alaska tribal sovereignty.
Given past court rulings affirming the federally recognized tribal status of Alaska Native
villages, Palin does not technically challenge that status. But Palin argues that Alaska Tribes
have no authority to act as sovereigns, despite their recognition.
So extreme is Palin on tribal sovereignty issues that she has sought to block tribes from
exercising any authority whatsoever even over the welfare of Native children, adhering to a 2004
legal opinion issued by the former Murkowski Administration that no such jurisdiction exists
(except when a state court transfers a matter to a tribal court).
Both the state courts and the federal courts have struck down Palin’s policy of refusing to
recognize the sovereign authority of Alaska Tribes to address issues involving Alaska Native
children. Native Village of Tanana v. State of Alaska, 3AN-04-12194 CI (judgment entered
Aug. 26, 2008) (Ak. Super. Ct.); Native Kaltag Tribal Council v. DHHS, No. 3:06-cv-00211-
TMB (D. Ak.), pending on appeal No 08-35343 (9th Cir.)). Nonetheless, Palin’s policy of
refusing to recognize Alaska tribal sovereignty remains unchanged.
4. Palin has attacked Alaska Native Languages
Palin has refused to accord proper respect to Alaska Native languages and voters by
refusing to provide language assistance to Yup'ik speaking Alaska Native voters. As a result,
Palin was just ordered by a special three-judge panel of federal judges to provide various forms
of voter assistance to Yup'ik voters residing in southwest Alaska. Nick v. Bethel, No. 3:07-cv-
0098-TMB (D. Ak.) (Order entered July 30, 2008). Citing years of State neglect, Palin was
ordered to provide trained poll workers who are bilingual in English and Yup'ik; sample ballots
in written Yup'ik; a written Yup'ik glossary of election terms; consultation with local Tribes to
ensure the accuracy of Yup'ik translations; a Yup'ik language coordinator; and pre-election and
post-election reports to the court to track the State's efforts.
In sum, measured against some the rights that are most fundamental to Alaska Native Tribes –
the subsistence way of life, tribal sovereignty and voting rights – Palin’s record is a failure.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Lipstick on a pig

For anyone to take that elderly slang phrase personally is flat-out stupid. First off, the entire statement was as follows:
'We're really gonna shake things up in Washington,'" Obama said, mocking McCain's claim to offer change. "That's not change. That's just calling something the same thing, something different. But you know you can put lipstick on a pig, but it's still a pig.
"You can wrap an old fish in a piece of paper called change. It's still going to stink after eight years. We've had enough of the same old thing! It's time to bring about real change to Washington. And that's the choice you've got in this election," Obama said.

A direct slam to Palin, calling her a pig? Gee, does that mean McCain is the old fish? Get real.

This is just more Bushite b.s., drawing attention away from the real issues. The economy, for one. And that's a biggie. Anyone with a fourth-grade education in history should be shocked and disgusted about that.

Mind you, I'm not advocating war. But war, like it or not, stimulates the economy. Every single time in history, except this one. Gee, I wonder why? How can we have a war and a recession at the same time? Do tell us, McBush.

VOTE OBAMA! In the words of Hillary Clinton, "No way, No how, No McCain." He didn't fool me by appointing a woman, because he picked one who's against every woman's issue I'm for, and for every issue I'm against. Eight years of this drek is enough. We want REAL change, not just lip-service to fool the republican/conservative sheep.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Here is new kitty, Renee. Will you look at that tail? Her nickname is squirrel.

Here's sweetie Kira.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

What price youth?

Checked out a book from the library, "How Not to Look Old." Some of the advice it had was interesting, some of it was so unrelated to my lifestyle I had to laugh. I can see where tight, knee-length skirts and four-inch spike heels look good, but get real. I'm a librarian. I have to do a LOT of walking, plus bending and getting books from low shelves, climbing on stools to get books on high shelves. Low, stable heels and longer skirts just work better for the physical aspects of my job. Now if I worked in an office, and the most energetic thing I did all day was type and answer the phone, that look would work.

And when did pantyhose go out of style? I hate the damn things, but most office and store clerk jobs require them. Besides, what nut is going to wear a skirt and bare legs in the winter? Not this one.

Where the author lost me completely was the pantie advice. Evidently anything but thongs is "old lady."

Not gonna happen. Give up my comfy cotton granny panties for butt floss? If that's what it takes to be young and hip, then call me an old lady and give me my walker! I tried on a pair. It felt like a permanent wedgie.

Just goes to show, when reading beauty advice, use your common sense and take it all with a grain of salt.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Here goes nothing

I have been trying to sell a novel since I was twenty. I'm now 54, and my file of rejection slips is over an inch thick. I think I'll burn them. Of course, it's entirely possible that my writing just isn't good enough. I think it's just bad luck and the increasing shrinking of the publishing world.

I was going to self-publish with my income tax refund, but thanks to my husband, all that money just vanished. I'm not sure what happened to it, but I sure didn't see any.

I have 5 finished novels, and am rough-drafting a sixth. I guess I'll attempt to write synopses and get them in the mail again, though I just don't think it's going to help. And it takes half a year to hear back! What's up with that? Do all the publishers think writers are immortal? Geez.

Moving sucks

My dad wasn't in the military, yet I once figured out that by the age of 21, I had lived in 17 houses in 5 states. If you count that I lived in Kansas twice, that's six. That doesn't count the college dorm rooms. I moved from one room to another during my freshman year, and again had to switch rooms my junior year. Each year, of course, I had to pack up everything and schlep it home, then schlep it back the next year. Let's see, that's six more moves. At least they were only a roomful, not an entire household.

Then, after college but when I was still living at home, my folks moved again. Okay, 17 + 6= 23. So that was my 24th move. At the age of 23. Yikes!

Then my first apartment, move 25. Then back with my parents when my dad was dying, 26. Then to graduate school, 27. Then to El Paso: 2 apartments and one house, bringing my moves up to 30. Then to Albuquerque: 2 apartments, 1 house, and 2 duplexes: my grand total of moves at age 54 is 35.

Sweet God in heaven.

Every single move, stuff got lost, stuff got broken. Friends vanished into the past, favorite places are seen no more. But you get new stuff, new friends, and new favorite places, so it balances out.

I'm still damn sick of packing.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Able-bodied? Ever park in a handicapped spot?

There is a special place in the afterlife for able-bodied people who park in handicapped spots, and it isn’t a good one. Those of you who’ve done it know who you are, and SHAME on the lot of you! I don’t care what your excuse is. “I was only going to be a minute.” Sure, and in that minute a handicapped person got there and couldn’t use the spot. “I’ve never seen anyone park there.” So you’ve been there 24-7 since the place was built, huh? “I left my wife/husband/kids in the car so it doesn’t count.” Oh, yes, it does, and the fine is upwards of a hundred dollars. “I didn’t park in the space, just the cross-hatched area between spaces. That’s just wasted space anyway.” Not if you’re trying to deal with a wheelchair, it’s not. “Most people who use them aren’t REALLY handicapped. They sure don’t look handicapped. Why do they need the best spots?”

Many reasons. I doubt you’d argue with someone in a wheelchair or using a walker, would you? Just realize that a lot of mobility impairments are invisible. Someone with crippling arthritis wouldn’t be immediately recognizable. Someone with an artificial limb might not be able to walk far without pain. Someone with a heart condition might just be able to shop, but if they had to walk farther from their car, might not be able to manage.

At any rate, the judgement isn’t yours to make. Laziness isn’t a handicap, neither is being in a hurry. Park somewhere else, and look on the extra steps as exercise. I’ve seen some of you schmucks, and you need it.

Ignorance is not not knowin' - ignorance is knowin' what ain't so.
--Mark Twain