In my opinion, the dog days of summer have arrived early this year. I blame the cicadas. They are all dead now, so they can't refute me. It's quiet here. They took the "Summer of Death" moniker with them too.
Now it's the summer of boredom.
I'm not complaining. Usually my life is a bit of a cluster-fudge (I hate being noble) because there is always something else to distract me (Hey! Fudgesicles!) and I spend way too much time on things that exemplify my ADD. But lately I've been much better about keeping track of what I am doing and finishing it before I move on to the next. I've been writing a lot, and my thesis is coming together, even though I am starting to feel like I will never finish it (irrational, I know, because I will finish it, or I'm going to get every bone in my body broken...) but it is almost oppressive, just because I am writing the same things over and over. My advisor tells me that an essay (my thesis is a series of nonfiction pieces) is not thesis-worthy until it has been revised more than ten times. I do not believe her, but I have been revising. A lot.
All the work that I have been doing on my writing has made me stop checking the billion web sites or so that I used to every day. I'm hopelessly behind in a lot of blogs that I used to read. I don't really miss it, actually, which tells me that I should have simplified this whole Internet thing a long time ago. I still run across some interesting stuff though.
I love pointing out hypocrites. It's one of my most favorite things to do. I don't follow a lot of Washington scandals, but I love the one that broke earlier this year, about a supposed Madame busted for running a prostitution ring, because you know that her client list has to include a selection of Holier-than-thou public servants.
Now batting: Louisiana Senator David Vitter. This article has the details of what his last week has been like. Eh. He's going to spin it like anyone else would, I guess. But I remember Sen. Vitter for something he said in 2006, well before the mid-term elections, when people actually still cared about W's agenda. Two really pointless parts of his agenda were creating Constitutional amendments that would ban burning an American flag and gay marriage.
(What if two burning, gay American flags wanted to get married? That might be the dumbest question I've ever asked.)
I'm not sure what Vitter's point of view was on the flag thing (he is a Republican, so he probably wanted it) but I know what his POV was on the gay marriage issue. Now remember that he represents Louisiana, which includes New Orleans, which was devastated by a Hurricane Katrina in 2005, because in the discussion of whether gay marriage should be banned constitutionally, David Vitter stood in front of the camera and said that the issue of gay marriage was by far the most important issue to the people that he represents.
I for one can picture the thousands of people displaced from Katrina sitting in their FEMA trailers waiting for the Army Corps of Engineers to repair the rest of the levees so that they might make it back into their homes by, say, 2020 look skyward and praise the Lord because David Vitter is looking out for their best interests.
Ah, the smell of hypocrisy. There's nothing like it. Here's a guy championing good ol' fashioned heterosexual marriage who tears down his own like it was a Category 5 moving over the bayou.
Which leads me to my next feature: I'm late in reporting this, but apparently on Sunday July 8th the San Diego Padres had the audacity to sponsor a Gay Pride Day at Petco Park for their game with the Atlanta Braves. Predictably, several "Christian" organizations had full blown aneurysms.
My favorite part of that rant:
"Not even an afternoon at a baseball game apparently is going to be safe for parents who want to protect their children from advocates for homosexuality, with the San Diego Padres' confirmation their July 8 game will simultaneously offer free caps to attract children, and a formal recognition of the area's homosexual organization."
Because, as anyone well knows, you recruit kids to become homosexuals by first offering them floppy hats. Once the kids see how absolutely FABULOUS they look, they're hooked.
Forgive me, I can't resist including more:
"This action by the San Diego Padres management has greatly tarnished their record as being a family friendly organization. They have truly offended the moral and religious sensibilities of literally thousands of fans. I will never look at the Padres the same way that I have over the past 40 plus years here in San Diego, enjoying its image as being pro family. It is really sad," said Phil Magnan, the director for Biblical Family Advocates."
Hmm, Phil says that he's never going to look at the Padres the same way again. Sounds like he's already coming around. Hope he got a floppy hat. Have any of these "outraged citizens" ever been to San Diego? If so, they don't pay much attention. There's more in the article about a certain group of vendors threatening to walk off the job during the game, and I will make the obligatory crack about them being uncomfortable placing a whole lot of foot-long hot dogs in buns...thank you very much.
Actually, I have it from sources that what really honked off these wonks is that they heard that the Padres were going to recreate the infamous "Sausage Race" that the Milwaukee Brewers feature at every home game,and well, when they heard "sausage," they panicked.
It wasn't that kind of race, folks!
And a random 11 for those who made it this far:
1. "Ride My See Saw"-The Moody Blues. I couldn't make this up, could I? I hear this was sung before the Padres game on 7/8 in place of the National Anthem.
2. "Amnesia"-Chumbawamba. Whenever I hear a Chumbawamba song I am reminded of a tale told to me shortly after Christmas lo a few years ago. My nephew wanted this CD for Christmas and my mother (his grandmother) decided to buy it but when she went to the store she had difficulty locating it. Finally she had to ask for help. The idea of Mom asking someone "Where's the Chumbawamba?" is a gift from the Heavens. I love this band because of it.
3. "Monty Got a Raw Deal"-REM. I'm not chummy with the band, but if I were I'd demand to know that the guy's name being Monty is not just a coincidence, right? Monty Hall, Let's Make a Deal, c'mon, it's a clever ruse, no?
4. "Pets"-Porno for Pyros. Some songs are forever altered by a situation where you find yourself listening to it. This is an example: last August I drove all the way from Chicago to LA to visit some good friends and as I was getting off the Freeway at twilight trying to navigate the directions I was given, this song came on. If I live to be 123, I will always think about looking for the Monrovia Fire Station and then making a right turn whenever I hear this song.
5. "Bass Trap"-U2. An obscure B-sides composition that, like above, will always resonate with me because of coincidental opportunity. It's too long of a story to hash here but I was once in an airplane listening to this song when we flew over a Wind Farm, and the tempo of the song fit the movement of the turbines perfectly. I had what I can only describe as a harmonic moment. Sounds moronic, yes, but it was one of the most amazing moments of my life.
6. "Ain't So Easy"-David + David. These guys put out a killer CD in the mid-80s and then absolutely disappeared. Boggles my mind, like it was a remake of "Eddie and The Cruisers" or something.
7. "Wake Me Up On Judgement Day"-Steve Winwood. In the fall of 1987 I was a newly arrived freshman at the University of Iowa, placed randomly into a bizarre living situation. This CD ("Back in the High Life") saved me from going insane about fifteen thousand times over.
8. "Buffalo River Home"-John Hiatt. I had never heard this song until last summer (on the same trip where I had the "Pets" moment) when I was driving through the Santa Fe area and heard it on a radio station which played two straight hours of great music (something sorely lacking in Chicago). It was 98.7 KBAC "Radio Free Santa Fe" and when I got home I became a religious listener via their Internet streaming. Alas, they stopped the streaming in the spring. They won't respond to my e-mails begging them to start it up again. My life may never recover. This song makes me sob now, endlessly.
9. "What's My Scene?"-The Hoo Doo Gurus. Don't have much to say here, other than it's fun to type Hoo Doo at 2 AM.
10. "Rafters"-Moby. As far as I can tell, the woman who hums throughout this song is eating a big ol' chocolate cake. Perhaps it was her birthday.
11. "Down In the Bottom"-Walter Becker. The less-cool half of Steely Dan, but this song has some of the best lyrics ever. I'm glad he saved it for himself, because Donald Fagan would sound foolish singing this song.