Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Grieving in the digital age

So it's 10 p.m. and I should really go to bed, given that I have to work tomorrow. But I decide to jump online to check e-mail. "Bad news," the subject line reads. The sister of a dear, dear friend (one of my bridesmaids in fact) who I've known, oh, what feels like forever, has been in a car accident with her husband and son, who is 7, or maybe by now had turned 8. Some idiot, or maybe a drunk, plowed into them on a Pennsylvania highway.

The little boy didn't make it. My friend's sister, who I also think of as a dear friend, is in critical condition. The husband has a broken pelvis, but will survive.

Physically, at least.

To say these people are the salt of the earth is both a cliche and a gross understatement. They are intelligent and unfailingly kind. They were the most loving parents to their son, whom they adopted from South Korea as a baby. They were so proud to be his parents--true parents, even though he was born half a world away. Now he is gone, and his adoptive mother might not make it, and I am filled with sadness and rage.

I hadn't talked to this couple for many years, but then everybody on earth (or so it seems) started getting on Facebook. So for the last little while, I've been chatting with them regularly. Getting updates on their little boy. Hearing about their lives.

And now, tonight, as news of the horrible accident spread, a bunch of us who were friends together in New Jersey, and later in Boston, many, many moons ago now, mutual friends, gathered in cyberspace to discuss what happened and to grieve. I had four Facebook chats going at once at one point. This, I guess, is how we gather now to process such shattering events, especially when we are separated by hundreds of miles.

I only wish there was something I could do for my friends, but I know there is nothing. There are no words you can say to parents who have lost a child. To a man who might lose his wife. God willing she will make it. But what they are going through, I wouldn't wish on anybody.

I'm not sure how I will sleep now.

MONDAY UPDATE: The little boy's mom died, too, over the weekend. Heaven has two more angels now.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

"Our Awesome Post--Racial Society"

The amazing Tom Tomorrow hits the nail on the head re: right wing racial hypocricy. I would love to re-post the cartoon here but I suspect there are copyright issues with that. As with all his cartoons, it's a must-read. (Notice the Obama "African" photo in the third panel -- this is an actual teabagger poster that's been making the rounds.)

Monday, September 21, 2009

Quote of the Day

Posted by Broadway Carl
"We figured Fox would rather show 'So You Think You Can Dance' than broadcast an honest discussion about health insurance reform," - White House spokesman Josh Earnest on the omission of Fox during the current Presidential media blitz

Of course, imbeciles like Chris Wallace don't get it. They don't understand why President Obama wouldn't use his time to go on their network to promote health care reform after the network decided not to air his joint session of Congress on the very same topic.
"They are the biggest bunch of crybabies I have dealt with in my 30 years in Washington," Wallace said on the Fox News program "The O'Reilly Factor."

Well, somebody's crying, but it sounds like Chris Wallace.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Things people have forgotten about

(Cross-posted at Broadway Carl's Blog-O-Mania)

Remember Hurricane Katrina? It's had some jaw-dropping lasting effects. That no one will talk about. Because they concern mostly black people.

But it's not like people are still racist in America, right? Just avert your eyes and carry on...

Personally I still recall the raw horror, the literal nausea, I felt watching the Katrina disaster unfold on TV while King George the Inept ate birthday cake with John McCain. I vividly remember thinking: "We've lost an entire American city due to the Bush administration's ineptitude. NOW, now he's going to get impeached for sure."

So much for that. And today, all these years later, large swaths of New Orleans are evidently still a giant hellhole, and this NEVER makes it on the news. Awesome.

Immune To Irony

Posted by Broadway Carl

How do these people get elected into office? Did they stop drooling on themselves long enough to convince the rubes they call their constituents that they would be of use in Congress? ANY USE?

After receiving a complaint from a rube/constituent of their inconvenience during their recent travel, Republican Texas Rep. Kevin Brady decided to write a letter on their behalf, which would be a nice gesture if it weren't for the purpose of the trip and the specific travel complaint, as the Wall Street Journal so aptly describes:
Protesters who attended Saturday’s Tea Party rally in Washington found a new reason to be upset: Apparently they are unhappy with the level of service provided by the subway system.

Rep. Kevin Brady asked for an explanation of why the government-run subway system didn’t, in his view, adequately prepare for this past weekend’s rally to protest government spending and government services.


This would be funny if it weren't so pathetic. But what do you expect? These people who, as Brady writes in his letter of complaint to DC's Metro system, "came all the way from Southeast Texas to protest the excessive spending and growing government intrusion by the 111th Congress and the new Obama administration" complained that said government's transit system did not spend extra money to provide extra service for the teabagger event.


And the newest Republican MENSA member to step into that dubious Spotlight of Superstupid decides to write a letter on the behalf of an 80-year old woman, who is most likely in that evil, socialized Medicare program, with absolutely no conception of the irony of the situation.


And the kicker of this whole affront to the teabagging community? In July, the House voted on a resolution for appropriations for the Departments of Transportation, HUD, and related agencies including emergency funding for the Metro DC subway system. Brady voted against the resolution.


Texas Republican Rep. Kevin Brady: SUPERGENIUS.

(H/T Wonkette)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Classic Stupidity

Posted by Broadway Carl

These are the boneheads we are dealing with.

(Photo via Bob Cesca)

These are the imbeciles that "want their country back" as if it was taken away from them in the first place. I wonder how morons like these get by day to day without being killed by walking into traffic? Or walking off a cliff? Or having an anvil fall on their head?

UPDATE (2:30pm): Update on The Stupid.

Via Wonkette:
Would-be teabaggers and and other easily duped dingbats are proudly emailing each other wonderful pictures of a million teabaggers crowding the National Mall, but these pictures are actually from the Million Man March of 1997, an event attended by, ahem, colored people.


Yes, yes, yes and yes

Atrios hits the nail on the head:

Obviously the recession has much to do with it, but I do wish it would occur to our great captains of the airline industry that one reason people are flying less is that the experience has become so incredibly shitty. Some of this is not the fault of the individual airlines, such as stupid security theater, but plenty of it is. I mean bag fees, what the fuck? And it isn't simply the money, it's the extra hassle and just general sense of being screwed and harassed throughout the entire process.

When ARE the airlines (to say nothing of the people in charge of Homeland Security) going to realize that the more they crap all over people, the less people will fly? Why am I still taking my damn shoes off, for example? Why must we take our 4-year-old's shoes off? Why is it that when we finally get on the plane, we barely fit in the seats? How tall and heavy do the airlines think the average person is, anyway? My husband, around 5"8 and still as skinny as he was in his 20s -- he barely fits. Me, 5"3 and certainly overweight but nowhere near obese -- I barely fit. My knees practically hit the seat in front of me. Do the airlines think most adults are not over 5"3? I weep for these poor 6"4 guys, folding their entire bodies, origami-like, in a vain attempt to fit in the coach seats. Deep vein thrombosis, here we come!

And then, say you're going from Boston to Los Angeles. Would you like to have a drink of water over the next 6-plus hours? Well, good luck with that, if you lacked the foresight to bring your own bottle of water.

Anyway. None of these are new complaints. It's just amazing how, even in this economy when you think they'd want to encourage people to fly, the whole experience just gets worse and worse.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


This poor blog has been sadly neglected lately, for which I must apologize. You think your life is going to get less crazy, and somehow it only gets crazier. I now realize this is the permanent state of things, so I might as well get used to it!

With that, I would like to declare a reboot on my blogging activities. I'm going to start over with new posts on all things personal as well as political, because there's a ton going on on both fronts. As always, I must thank the highly talented Broadway Carl for his insightful contributions here, and you'll see my posts over at his place as well.

So stay tuned for more updates, and as always, thanks for reading!