Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas to all - 2010

Twas the night before Christmas
And just like a louse,
I sneak open my laptop
and grab for the mouse.

A merry hot fire is
crackling and popping
on the screen of my TV
so it won’t be stopping

As I ponder the evening
with tired brain and eyes
I think of my folks
that are spread far and wide

So here’s cheers to you all
on a night merry and bright
Happy Christmas to all
and (YAWN) good night!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Everything and the kitchen sink

I was recently reading some personality typing materials related to a test I had taken and was struck by a statement characterizing one personality type as becoming very focused on a project to the exclusion of all else.  Reminded me of a time when I was fully immersed in an art design project - thinking back on the time I think of it more as being in an eccentric artist space or an absent minded professor. 

Still pondering the execution of the next part of my design I decided to start dinner, and, upon encountering a suspicious jar of sauerkraut absentmindedly dumped it into the garbage disposal.  I was merrily grinding it away when I, again absentmindedly, wondered if I should have been better off putting it in the compost.  Duh...yeah.  The sink plugged and I was rudely awakened from my Artiste mode to a kitchen sink filling with totally skanky (that's a technical term, mind you) water.  There’s really nothing like the mundane-ness of a plugged sink to exorcize the airhead in you.

I am relatively handy, and was somewhat motivated to try to fix the gaff before Resident Spouse returned, so I dutifully wielded both plunger and plumber’s snake, but to no avail.  I woefully washed the dishes in the bathtub that night when Resident Spouse took over. I think I saw a black cloud forming over the kitchen and tried to maintain a respectful distance.  We finally resorted to the dreaded Drano and held our breath to see what the reaction would do to 80 year old pipes. 

Long story short, the Drano finally worked, the pipes held, and the kitchen sink drains better than it has for the entire 16 years we’d lived with the thing.  The drains probably were due for a routing out, but the compost worms were much more deserving and I’m sure there’s a less intense way to complete a home maintenance project.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The aftermath

I've clearly listened to too much news radio today as I went around my business but it kept bringing to mind a comment I received during election season.  I am still somewhat chuckling that I was accused of being anti-Republican.  I can understand why someone would assume that I'm not a registered Republican but I think about what spurred the comment and I'm a bit surprised at the implicit assumption.

I received this characterization of my character after I suggested that someone might want to think twice about voting for a particular candidate because of their ties to the local Tea Party movement.  My reason was that I have had personal interactions with some of these folks and found that they turned to lies, threats, slander (yes, it was verbal, to my face) and libel (accusations about me in writing) when they weren't getting their way over a politically charged issue. 

So why do I find it so interesting that I should be charged with being anti-Republican?  It's because of the implicit assumption that because I'm anti-Tea Party (yes, I'll fully admit that) that I am also anti-Republican.  But how was this person to know that the very first folks that I met who were active in the Tea Party, in fact just as the Tea Party was becoming a "thing," were registered Democrats?  I think they were actually Libertarians, but didn't have the wherewithal to register as such.  Even funnier, not long earlier, these "Democrats" had accused me of being a Republican.

My characterizer also may not know that the very first candidate fielded by the Tea Party in my county, before they knew to call themselves Tea Partiers, was a registered Democrat.  He tried to run as a Republican before he found out he couldn't (because he was a registered Democrat (duh)).  So, if anything, my commentator should have an issue with the Tea Party rather than me for any damages to the Republican party's image.

But all this gets away from what I think is interesting, which is the assumptions people make.  I didn't ask, but I do wonder if the person who assumed I'm anti-Republican would believe that I've voted for Republican candidates on more than one occasion and have been happy to do so.  And of course, in return, I made my own assumptions, that this person is a registered Republican, but I actually don't know that either.

I made as many assumptions as my commentator and it's interesting that we weren't able to have enough of a substantive conversation to really understand each other's perspectives.  It's like those ships that pass in the night where you can just see the lights in the dimness, but the waves in their wake keep rippling through the mind to make us think about what the passage truly meant.