Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Let's Look at this Trump Presidency in a Different Way

I understand that this whole Trump as President thing seems huge.  Really, really yuuuuuuge.  Perhaps to get some folks to understand why there is so much opposition to Donald Trump, we need to reframe this whole picture.  We need a smaller frame.
Let’s make it a local school district and Trump is the Superintendent.  What is a school superintendent?  Here’s what I found on the blog of Anne Martens, the former Marketing & Communications Director for Stand for Children Washington:

The superintendent is the top executive ("CEO") in the school district.
The superintendent implements the school board’s vision by making day-to-day decisions about educational programs, spending, staff, and facilities. The superintendent hires, supervises, and manages the central staff and principals. 
Superintendents must work with school leaders -- principals -- to serve the needs of students and meet the district goals.
The superintendent must also respond to the demands of all the other constituencies and interest groups in the district: teachers, students, parents, staff, advocates, and the community at large. She or he must consider how to use the financial and human resources of the district in order to achieve the best results. While being mindful of competing demands, a great superintendent will be guided by what is best for all students.

That’s pretty much what we expect from the President of the United States, right?
So, say we have some disgruntled constituents of a particular school district.  They think their taxes are too high and being used for quiche and arugula in the school cafeteria, art classes, drama clubs, and other non-necessities.  They don’t think they should pay for school nurses and gym equipment.  They’ve had enough.  They’re putting their feet down.  They are going to vote out the school board and get a new school district superintendent.
Most folks are sure that a certain female superintendent will be elected, so many don’t vote.  Also, the school district has been gerrymandered to represent only certain views on education.  A new, and surprising, leader is coming to the fore.  While campaigning, the disgruntled residents of the school district learn that this man does not want “undesirables’ to move into his district and attend his schools. He incites violence against them during campaign meetings.  He promises to build a wall around the school and have another school district pay for it.  His followers chant, “build the wall.”  He also has been overheard talking about grabbing the genitals of female students.  Once he stated he could shoot a kid in the middle of the school cafeteria and he would still be elected.  He makes fun of the special-ed teacher and her students.  He comments on the size of his genitals while speaking during a school assembly.
Sure enough, this man becomes school superintendent.   He vows to remove mulch and rubber padding on the playgrounds and pave all play areas with asphalt.  The schools’  boilers are all old and belch out toxic fumes.  None of the schools’ windows open so the rooms get hotter and hotter.  Crayons melt.  All of the school pets die.  He doesn’t feel there is a problem, even though the equipment can be fixed.  Bullying has been encouraged, and the school counselors have been fired so the children have no one to help them.  He appoints school principals that are racists.  Female students are rated on a scale of 1-10 and are ignored if they report they are groped.  The new superintendent might even sue these girls over their complaints.  Subsidized tampon dispensers are removed from all girls’ restrooms.  The school nurse has been fired.  He praises the leader of Russian schools even though he is known for horrible human rights abuses.
Would you want this man as leader of your child’s school?

Then why would you want him as leader of your country?

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Nine Little Words

Build A Wall
Lock Her Up
Drain the Swamp

Nine little words brayed repeatedly by the President-Elect while campaigning.  Nine little words chanted by the Trump disciples.  Over and over and over.  What do these nine little words have in common?  Other than they are monosyllabic (short, easy) words?  Any guesses?  They are meaningless.  All meaningless. 
I’m pretty much glad that six of those words have no meaning.  Build a wall – useless and expensive.  Lock her up – imagine the resources that would take.  Also useless and expensive.  Drain the swamp – Trump is busy filling the swamp.  Perhaps he meant to drain the brackish water from the swamp so we could clearly see the mass of writhing reptiles.
These nine little words swarmed around the heads of the Trump disciples like torpid mosquitoes.  Somewhat bothersome, but not worth the effort to swat away.  Actually energizing to many.  Often invigorating.  Easy to say.  Fun to chant.  “I’ll vote for that,” many said.  “Trump rallies are fun,” they stated.  “We’ll put Trump in the White House with these fine ideas,” they swore.
Nine little words.  Three massive wishes.  These three wishes will never be granted by the Trump genie.  What now, Trump supporters?  With the tarnishing brass lamp lying at your feet, useless, what will you do?  Gloat?  Seems to still be happening by the viral videos I see of shouting Trump voters?  Sneer?  Sneering at Liberals is all-consuming fun.  Hate?  Ongoing.   Those are three more little words.  Gloat, sneer, hate.  Actually, not so little.
What is left for us all now?  Watching the rapid dismantling of our country.  Removal of health care for those who could lose everything with one major illness.   Gutting of free education.  Removal of any regulations that could keep your water safe and your air clean.  Why would any of these things be beneficial to our country?  Did any Trump voters actually stop to think about this?  Do any research?  Think about the future of their children and grandchildren? 

No thinking involved.  Just chanting.  The repetition of those nine little words.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Annual Christmas Card Bitching Post

The first Christmas Card arrived over the weekend from a former student of my husband.  Three photos on a card.  Children.  Lovely girls.  No personal greeting.  No signature.  

Why the hell bother.  


so . . .

Again.  Word for word, is last years post.

If I am on your Christmas Card list, I'm delighted.  Whether you are a friend, an acquaintance, or merely someone who has repaired my furnace or cleaned my teeth, it doesn't matter.  I love a card.  I like those cards to be cute, glittery, gorgeous, filled with confetti, festooned with ribbon, city stylized, kissing kousin kountry, red and green, blue and white, black and yellow, and decorated with Jesus, snowmen, zebras, angels, trees, RVs, balls, bells, and whistles.

I also will read your newsletter.  If you care to send me the long form, I will happily read it because, chances are, I care.  And I really like it when you tuck in a photo of your kids, your dogs or your vacation home.   Especially the kid.   If I like you, then I probably like your kid.  I even want to know if they've made the honor roll or graduated from braces and headgear.

Just please, please, please don't send that one-sided, unsigned, undecorated photo of your dog, kid, or vacation home that poses as a complete holiday card.  And when you print out the envelope on your computer and your housekeeper then stuffs all of the envelopes, I'm going to want to tell you to stuff it.   Put a bit of ink on the damn thing or don't send it.  I'd rather you send me a picture on facebook of your middle finger.  At least that's personal.

Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas
Happy Kwanzaa
Happy Chanukah
and so on

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Rides of the Republican Candidates Revisited

Once again, I did some Republican debate watching.  Wine involved of, course.  I felt I had to do just a bit of tweaking to my original Rides of the Republican candidates post.   What mode of transporation would your favorite candidate use:

Once again:

Chris Christie – Tony Soprano’s last trade-in.   Unpleasant air freshener.  Trunkful of unmatched DNA.

Marco Rubio – Luxurious, somewhat understated.  Seatbelt, rear view mirror and sideview mirrors well-used.  Bluetooth enabled.  Small posse in backseat Googling statistics to be distorted for future use.  Pleasing air freshener.   Oral hygiene kits from flying first class in glove compartment.

Dr. Ben Carson – Also luxurious and understated.  Amazing shock absorbers but restrictive speedometer.  Lacking GPS, yet pointed in the direction of home for a good brandy.

Walter Scott, uh, Tim Scott, um, Scott Walker (can never remember his name) – Non-union-built golf cart with steering disabled, heading for a water trap.  Cart decorated with photographs of aborted fetuses.

Donald Trump – Atop a rocket launcher or loose cannon.  Backs of poor people or Mexicans.  Oh hell, he’ll ride anything to get to the top.  Except Carly Fiorina.

Jeb Bush – Same as George W. only a newer model.  Small Mexican flag hidden in glove compartent.

Mike Huckabee – Empty refrigerator box in back yard, decorated as a time machine.  Four drawn-on control buttons inside box dated 29c, 1450s, 1633,  last Sunday 9:00 am.  (I wasn’t going to mention those from the ‘other’ debate, but Rick Santorum and Huckabee are having a little-girl hair pulling fight to see who’s turn it is in the box.)

Ted Cruz – giant lizard Dewback thing from Star Wars.  Saddle bags full of rocks, a couple of ninja throwing stars,  and a leather pouch containing a guide to correct middle eastern pronunciations, an asshole license and Canadian registration.

Rand Paul – Black horse in full jousting gear.  Worried that horse is more interested in grazing.

John Kasich – Late model Oldsmobile.  Those stick-figure family thingies on rear window.  Glove compartment containing tattered maps, ill-fitting driving gloves, partially used bottle of Old Spice.  Remnants of ‘coexist’ and rainbow flag bumper stickers.

Carly Fiorina.  Something sleek and blue.  Burns a great deal of fossil fuels.  Has fins.

And I just have to add one other.  Can’t help it.  Even though he’s moved on to better things.  He will be sorely missed.

Rick Perry – Clampet family truck.  Every time it hits a pothole, shit falls off – pots, pans, granny, luggage, lamps, rakes, and now Rick Perry himself.  Glove compartment filled with dark-rimmed glasses and upside down maps.

I have to admit I only watched 40 minutes.  Next time, I will persevere.


Friday, August 7, 2015

Rides of the Republican Candidates


Yes, there was enough wine in the house to take me to the 10:30 mark of the (main) debate last night.  Bed was calling and I knew what the answers would be and I just couldn’t yell anymore.  But once in bed, when I tried to imagine the country with one of them as a leader, I found it helped to imagine what kind of vehicle they would drive.  Sometimes I don’t sleep well.

Chris Christie – Tony Soprano’s last trade-in.  Trunkful of unmatched DNA.

Marco Rubio – Luxurious, somewhat understated.  Seatbelt, rear view mirror and side view mirrors well-used.  Bluetooth enabled.  Small posse in backseat Googling statistics to be distorted for future use.  Pleasing air freshener.

Dr. Ben Carson – Also luxurious and understated.  Pointed in the direction of home for a good brandy.

Walter Scott, uh, Tim Scott, um, Scott Walker (can never remember his name) – golf cart with steering disabled, heading for a water trap.  Cart decorated with photographs of aborted fetuses.

Donald Trump – Atop a rocket launcher or loose cannon.  Backs of poor people or Mexicans.  Oh hell, he’ll ride anything to get to the top.

Jeb Bush – Same as George W. only a newer model.  Small Mexican flag hidden in glove compartment.  

Mike Huckabee – Empty refrigerator box in back yard, decorated as a time machine.  Four drawn-on control buttons inside box dated 29c, 1450s, 1633,  last Sunday 9:00 am.  (I wasn’t going to mention those from the ‘other’ debate, but Rick Santorum and Huckabee are having a little-girl hair pulling fight to see who’s turn it is in the box.)

Ted Cruz – giant lizard Dewback thing from Star Wars.  Saddle bags full of rocks, a couple of ninja throwing stars and an asshole license and Canadian registration.

Rand Paul – Black horse in full jousting gear.

John Kasich – Late model Oldsmobile.  Those stick-figure family thingies on rear window.  Glove compartment containing tattered maps, ill-fitting driving gloves, partially used bottle of Old Spice.  Remnants of ‘coexist’ and rainbow flag bumper stickers.


Rides of the Moderators should be included:

Megyn Kelly – something small, red, fitted.  Car prepared to eat slower cars in front.

Chris Wallace – Suburu Outback.

Bret Baier – Oh. My. God.  I can’t see past the reflection off of the grill!


And I just have to add one other.  Can’t help it.


Rick Perry – Clampet family truck.  Every time it hits a pothole, shit falls off – pots, pans, granny, luggage, lamps, women voters, rakes, etc.  Glove compartment filled with dark-rimmed glasses and upside down maps.


Now I have to catch up on the debate of those that didn't make the top ten.  After I open the next bottle of wine.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Annual Christmas Card Bitching Post

Yes.   I have posted this before.  Many times.  I shall not give up.  As long as I have a glimmer of hope, there is a chance of my mailbox once again being filled with gorgeous, stunning, glittery, Christmas cards.

My Christmas cards received list shortens each year through attrition.  It will probably grow shorter if my best, dearest, and oldest friend reads this post.  Because, yes, she has sent the unadorned, unsigned and unloved photo postcard.

so . . .

Again.  Word for word, is last years post.

If I am on your Christmas Card list, I'm delighted.  Whether you are a friend, an acquaintance, or merely someone who has repaired my furnace or cleaned my teeth, it doesn't matter.  I love a card.  I like those cards to be cute, glittery, gorgeous, filled with confetti, festooned with ribbon, city stylized, kissing kousin kountry, red and green, blue and white, black and yellow, and decorated with Jesus, snowmen, zebras, angels, trees, RVs, balls, bells, and whistles.

I also will read your newsletter.  If you care to send me the long form, I will happily read it because, chances are, I care.  And I really like it when you tuck in a photo of your kids, your dogs or your vacation home.   Especially the kid.   If I like you, then I probably like your kid.  I even want to know if they've made the honor roll or graduated from braces and headgear.

Just please, please, please don't send that one-sided, unsigned, undecorated photo of your dog, kid, or vacation home that poses as a complete holiday card.  And when you print out the envelope on your computer and your housekeeper then stuffs all of the envelopes, I'm going to want to tell you to stuff it.   Put a bit of ink on the damn thing or don't send it.  I'd rather you send me a picture on facebook of your middle finger.  At least that's personal.

Happy Holidays
Merry Christmas
Happy Kwanzaa
Happy Chanukah
and so on

Friday, October 31, 2014

Separation of Church and Halloween

The church is killing the community. Sounds wrong, doesn’t it?  We’ve been told that the church is all about community.  Somehow, though, it has replaced the real community with a faux community conjured up from a homogeneous group brought together in a vast cinderblock bunker with a steeple on top and a 20-acre parking lot.

My daughter is going trick-or-treating tonight with a friend.  Sounds easy.  Took a lot of work to get to that point.  We live in an area with poor public schools.  Most everyone goes to private school.  My daughter knows almost no children in her neighborhood.  I guess you can say that private schools are killing the community, but that is for another post.  So back in early September, I set up a trick-or-treating date with my daughter’s best friend who lives 40 minutes away.  I communicated back and forth with the mom about Halloween plans and the sleepover.  All seemed well.  Until Monday, when I was informed that the girl couldn’t come because she had to volunteer at the “Fall Festival” at her church.

Yep.  Fall Festival.  Not Halloween.  Not trick-or-treating.  Why would anyone want their kids roaming their neighborhoods in costumes?  Seeing their neighbors.  Carving scary jack o’lanterns. The church feels a need to put an end to that.  Perhaps Satan has been found residing in Smarties and mini Twix bars.

And if the “Fall Festival” replacement is annoying, could it be worse than Trunk-or-Treat?  Skittish parents drive into their church parking lot and back their cars into a circular formation.   They fill their trunks with candy, pop the door open and the kids, unaware there is a real world out there, circulate among the trunks and fill their bags with candy.  Trunks are not for kids and candy.  They are for luggage.  Bald tires.  Low-level mobsters bound for the East River.  Sigh.

In a few hours, my daughter and another friend will roam the streets.  They will get to see neighbors they know and meet new ones.  My daughter will enlarge her community each time she rings a doorbell and says “trick or treat.”  I will go with them on the more unfamiliar streets and I, too, will enlarge my community.  And I get to look into other people’s houses.  I love that!

I’m so looking forward to seeing the little, happy kids.  And the bigger happy kids.  Hopefully not the really, really big kids, but I guess that’s ok as long as they are polite.  I’ve heard that we should expect around 150 kids.  Everyone will be out in this neighborhood – the children of the elite that live in $10,000,000 houses, college students, and the kids that live in public housing 3 blocks away.  My community will grow.  And it will only cost me 300 pieces of chocolate.  And I can leave my car parked in the drive.


Come on and ring my doorbell.  Ain’t nobody going to hell.