Coming Out of Left Field

Friday, January 30, 2004

A Friday Five


You have just won one million dollars:

1. Who do you call first?

That's easy -- my SO.

2. What is the first thing you buy for yourself?

A house, for me and SO.

3. What is the first thing you buy for someone else?

See answer to #3.

4. Do you give any away? If yes, to whom?

Yes, to an organization that fights cancer (not sure which one).

5. Do you invest any? If so, how?

Yes, most likely in a S&P 500 fund (risk-averse, that's me).

After that, I'd probably get stuff for said house, stash some away for tuition, and get some goodies we've had our eye on (digital camcorder, digital camera, CD burner, etc.) Too bad you have to actually buy a lottery ticket to win the jackpot ...

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Thursday, January 29, 2004


I love Catie Curtis, even though (as a friend of mine says) she's "such a dork!" That's a large part of her appeal, actually. She's not some diva who never forgets up a lyric or hits a wrong note; I think she's messed up the words at least once during every concert I've heard. And, Catie being Catie, she can even write a song about it:

Oops I'm Sorry

Maybe the new mayor here should study up on the lyrics. Or maybe the next time he decides to declare a snow emergency, he should wait for some snow first.

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Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Speaking of unions ...

... one kind of union (labor) is backing the other (civil):

Unions lend voice, might to back gay marriage

The quid pro quo aspect ("We support them, we support us") makes me a little uncomfortable, but the unions do seem to have their members' best interests at heart. Kudos to them. *thumbs up*

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Monday, January 26, 2004

"If I only had a brain ..."

Recently I read two sobering postmortems on Bush's State of the Union speech. The first, from the New Yorker, points up the small details (unemployment, environment, etc.) that Bush must not have had time to mention:

Unsteady State

The second, from my good friend Psychovant, provides a handy list of translations for those who might've had trouble deciphering what Shrub did say:

The State of Who's Union?

It's pretty sad when the president of your country reminds you of a song called Hollow Man (requires Real Player):

they picked another one off the vine
scooped out the seeds in the back of his mind
filled up his head with half-truths and lies
and put the finishing touch on the perfect disguise

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Thursday, January 22, 2004

Happy Chinese New Year!

Today kicks off the Year of the Monkey, by most accounts a clever, willful and unpredictable creature. My dad tells me that in some places people even made offerings to the Monkey King, a spell-casting simian in Journey to the West. Although he's cast as the sidekick -- the putative hero is a monk whom the Monkey King is compelled to protect -- anyone will tell you that the monkey steals the show. :)


Wednesday, January 21, 2004

Rebel yell?

If Howard Dean wins the Democratic nomination, it won't be because he owes it all to Ioway ... particularly after his post-caucus performance:

Yell in Iowa may haunt Dean camp

I didn't hear said yell itself, but I did hear the list of states (and had to check the TV to make sure it was Howard Dean, not one of those late-night informercials). I have to admit the moment gave me pause; I've been giving Dean the benefit of the doubt when it came to his rhetoric, but displays like this make him look like a loose cannon. Kerry looks very statesmanlike in comparison, though I'm not convinced he can dethrone Bush, and I know next to nothing about Edwards.

Of course, though I'd hate to see Dave Barry leave his current job, he does offer another option.

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Sunday, January 18, 2004

Go Pats!

EOM :)

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Thursday, January 15, 2004


Things like this make me wonder if anyone up there is paying attention:

Rose book will top best-seller list

Rose seems to think that now that he's confessed to betting on baseball, all will be forgiven. My idea of poetic justice sounds a little more like this:

An Iowa farmer, heeding strange voices, builds a baseball diamond in his cornfield. One by one, baseball players of times past -- from legends to one-at-bat wonders -- appear in the field. These players spend their days practicing and playing ball, at night vanishing into the cornfield. Word spreads -- via the Internet, radio, TV, what have you -- and fans come from far and wide to fill the stands.

Rose is signing books when someone asks him, "Hey, have you heard about the Field of Dreams?" Excited, he drops his pen and hops the first plane to Iowa. When he arrives, a game is already in full swing. Rose strides up to the plate, shoving Shoeless Joe Jackson out of the way, and snatches away the other man's bat.

The umpire calls time and motions Rose over. "Son," he says, "I've just got one question for you. Are you sorry?"

Rose stares at the ump. "Hell, no."

The ump stares back, then jerks a thumb over his shoulder. Rose doesn't move.

"Excuse me." Rose turns, to find Shoeless Joe holding out a hand. "I'd like that back, please."

Rose glares at him, then thrusts the bat at him and stalks off. As he steps off the diamond, he turns back to yell at the ump ... and sees nothing but dirt and a few lonely stalks of corn.

(Apologies to the folks behind Field of Dreams for my plot borrowing/embellishing.)

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Wednesday, January 14, 2004


You know it's winter when you're wishing for 40-degree weather ... the forecast says the low tonight will be 2, the high today only 6. There's an interesting story in today's Globe about how the chilly temperature makes people want to splurge on themselves:

Cold heats up comfort industry

The intro in particular caught my eye (and, for reasons which I can't explain with a straight face, cracked me up):

"Athan's European Bakery in Washington Square, Brookline, is a sinful land of chocolate and creme-covered desserts. But when the temperature dipped below freezing this weekend, the comfort food people turned to most was, of all things, ice cream.

'We were selling a lot of gelato,' said co-owner Angela Divaris."

Speaking of gelato, the votes at is now 32.13% against gay marriage/civil unions, 59.97% for gay marriage, and 7.90% for civil unions. Take that, AFA!

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Tuesday, January 13, 2004

"Poultry in motion, it's a beautiful thing!"

Whenever I get around to writing reviews again, I'll have to do one for Philadelphia Chickens, easily the funniest thing I've heard in a long, long time. I find myself singing or humming snatches at odd moments ("Pig Island" while doing the dishes, "Snoozers" under my breath at work). Maybe it's silly, considering that I'm not exactly in this book/CD's target audience, but what the hey ... if my little ones ever want to hear a song about swing-dancing chickens, I'll be all set.


Monday, January 12, 2004

Welcome to the 21st century, part 2

After years of passive but unyielding resistance, I finally got a cell phone the other day. I don't expect to use it all that much -- I probably won't call anyone other than my SO, and usually just when I get out of class late, need a ride from here to there, or leave the grocery list at home -- but having a phone does make me feel a bit more secure. Plus, it's fun having a new toy to play with. :)


Friday, January 09, 2004

Welcome to the 21st century

A good friend of mine forwarded me a link to a poll run by the anti-gay American Family Association (which, for some misguided reason, has yet to realize that the fact that someone was born gay doesn't automatically disqualify him/her from being a good person). To ensure that all of us are represented, I encourage you to make your views known:

I voted for instituting homosexual marriage, though to be honest I don't care if, for instance, Massachusetts does civil unions instead ... I just want my commitment to be recognized, legally and otherwise.

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Monday, January 05, 2004

Au revoir, Monsieur Chips

Caught a charming French flick the other night, Être et avoir (To Be and To Have), a documentary about a one-room schoolhouse in rural France. It was very well-made, the teacher (Georges Lopez, in his last year before retirement) ran his hodgepodge class firmly but with a great sense of fun, and the kids were cute without being sickening or playing to the camera.

The film was just one of the fun things from last New Year's Eve weekend ... first and foremost was a trip to N.H. I was happy to be inside, warm and dry, for the actual dropping of the ball, especially since I could probably see it better than most of the people in Times Square and didn't have to deal with trying to get home afterwards. And yesterday was the perfect end -- I wore PJs the entire time and didn't venture outside once. I live for lazy Sundays ...