Friday, April 30, 2004

Happy May Day (a day early) ...

Despite the fact that May Day started here, I'm willing to bet that 9 out of 10 Americans have no idea what it is (aside from a distress signal). Since it falls on a Saturday this year, which is already a holiday for this worker, I've done a little goofing off today in the name of the international working class.

Using an e-mailed question from a fellow WXDU dj ("what are some good songs to play for a world music show on May Day?") as an excuse to engage in purposeful time-wasting, I encountered a web page packed with links to audio files of The Internationale in various languages. What fun! Check out the Chinese rock version by the Tang Dynasty Band.

Also, something I learned that will probably never do me a bit of good: apparently the Italians always sing the song twice. It didn't say why.

It's interesting to note the difference in lyrics between this 1935(?) English version (RealAudio) and the "modern" Billy Bragg version (lyrics to both versions can be found here). Obviously Billy Bragg wants to make a bold left-wing statement ... he just doesn't want that statement to give anyone the impression that he actually supports a workers' revolution. So he rips off the communist anthem and changes the words to make it safe for commercial radio. Really radical, dude. That's stickin' it to the man.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

A less monotonous day than usual ...

I'm helping the web geek with some graphics, and I realized that I could make my job easier by going out and taking a few useful photos. I specifically wanted an inspection sticker on a gas pump, and an inspection sticker on a supermarket scale. Don't ask why--it's boring. So I went out at lunch and drove over the the nearest gas station and took a bunch of digital photos of the inspection sticker. For the scale, I decided that since Fresh Market was just up the street, I could probably get a photo of the scale there and then grab one of their overpriced sandwiches for lunch.

Once at Fresh Market I couldn't just walk behind the checkout and take a photo of their scale--that would have been strange and I'm certainly not strange. So I nicely asked the cashier for permission ... but I didn't realize that the guy standing next to her was the manager until he started shaking his head before all the words had exited my mouth. "No photos in the store." He looked almost frightened when he said it, as if he was sure that I was a shill sent in by corporate headquarters to test him on his knowledge and enforcement of corporate policy. Of course they have a no-photo policy--what if I was to find something not-so-fresh at Fresh Market and plaster the photo all over the web? But the fact that stores have this policy makes me all the more determined to flout it. So now that toady-boy at Fresh Market has informed me that it's not allowed, you know I'm going to be back there with my camera one of these days, furtively snapping away. Today, however, I just turned and walked out, without buying one of their overpriced sandwiches. I wanted to say horrible things about Fresh Market, but at the time I had no one to say them to. Things like: "Fresh Market tortures kittens and baby bunnies." But seriously, I can in all honesy say that Fresh Market has perhaps the most atrociously awful and unambitious web site I have ever seen. I was about to say it looks like a 10-year-old had designed it, but then I realized if that were true the site would probably kick ass.

Anyway, for the photo I decided to head up Capital Blvd. to the Capital City Market, which is very uncorporate and would probably let me take a photo of their scale and its inspection sticker. Sure enough, not only was the woman at the meat counter wonderfully nice, but she actually used to work here and knows a lot of my co-workers. Her family owns the market, she pointed out her dad to me at one point. So now I want to say wonderful things about the Capital City Market, like: "Capital City Market saves kittens and baby bunnies from being tortured by Fresh Market!"
I just hopped over to Daypop to see what the rest of the blogging world is up to--I swear my intention was not to find what was popular and link to it because I'm too lazy to come up with an original post. Honest. But I did find something I want to link to because it's worth linking to: Some Picture a friend brought back from Iraq (sic). It's not for the squeamish ... but I think it should be required viewing for pretty much everyone.

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Awesome!

We now have Roller Derby here in NC's Research Triangle area! If I were still in my 20s I'd be there, because I used to be a decent roller skater. When I was a kid I watched Roller Derby every week and one of my dreams was to be a Roller Derby girl. But at this point I'm sure that I'd be the first one to break a wrist, so I'll confine myself to watching.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Hello, I'm back.

No post yesterday because I was still exhausted from the flyball tournament weekend in Charleston. I should probably say a little something about flyball since most people don't know anything at all about it. So I'll put that on my list of things I could possibly write about one of these days. Right now, I'm going to participate in yet another meme from Mala. The deal is that she answered three questions from someone else, and then she had to make up three for others to answer. Then the others make up three for more others to answer. Sure it's rather pointless, but so's my whole blog, so I'm all for it. Here are Mala's questions ... and my answers:

1. If you could spend one year in perfect happiness, but then remember nothing of it, would you do so? Why or why not?
No, just as I wouldn't want to completely erase the memory of a perfectly horrible year. I think memory is a very important part of consciousness, intelligence and self-awareness. Without memory people would be like slugs, just groping along looking for the next bit of pansy to munch on until the day some bastard pours salt on them. I realize that I've just implied that slugs have no memory when in fact they could actually have fantastic memories. For all I know every bit of their little slimy slug bodies, apart from the part that eats the pansies and the eye stalks or antennae or whatever they are, could be dedicated to preserving memory and nothing else. The truth is I don't really know anything at all about slugs except that my preferred methods for keeping them away from my pansies are: Sluggo and in the cases of severe infestation, going out just after dark with a container of soapy water, picking up the slugs (with gloved hands) and dropping them into the soapy water.

2. You are given the opportunity to become a superhero. What powers would you have and what would you be called?
I'm fond of saying that I'd like to have the ability to smite people. But that might not be good because I'd probably just use it on some of the annoying people here at work to amuse myself and not for the greater good of the world. The only powers that come to mind are vague abilities to enforce fairness and justice, like perhaps I could give nightmares and crippling acid reflux to the CEOs of companies who lay off thousands just to give a temporary boost to their stock prices ... or maybe I'd be like the ghosts that visit Ebenezer Scrooge at Christmas, showing the people who grow fat off the misery of others exactly what their luxuries cost the world. I'd also like to be able to converse with dogs. I have no idea what I'd call myself, but it would have to be something that reflected my vast range of powers without sounding like the title of an action movie. Honestly I think "Lisa" is a perfectly good thing to be called, so maybe I'll stick with it.

3. How do you react when people in a restaurant sing "Happy Birthday" to you?
With a combination of happiness and embarrassment. On one hand I'm happy that people not only remember my birthday but actually go to the trouble of doing something about it--especially considering that outside of my immediate family I never remember anyone's birthday and I'm not known for my abilities to organize a big birthday blowout. On the other hand, when people sing happy birthday in a restaurant it calls attention to the table and disrupts everyone else's nice lunch or dinner and that's just embarrassing. I don't like being the cause of such foolishness. It's only worth it if there is some sort of free dessert involved.

Now I am making up three questions for others to answer. I suppose I need three people. If you want to play just e-mail me.

Thursday, April 22, 2004

Entry Part A:
An article in the Washington Post (registration required) just reminded me of an extremely cool transportation phenomenton that exists in the Washington, DC, area: slug-lines. The concept is really just fascinating to me--an efficient ride-sharing system that evolved on its own, with absolutely no government intervention. The whole system is like a work of art to me.

Entry Part B:
Tomorrow my dog and I are heading to South Carolina, where it appears to be state law that you have to display a Confederate flag sticker on your pickup truck (black folks seem to be exempted from this rule). We'll be going to Myrtle Beach early Friday to spend the day with my mother and then moving on to Charleston later in the evening because we have a flyball tournament there Saturday and Sunday. The highlight of the weekend will be the ceremonial purchasing of the lottery tickets. I may splurge and spend a whole three dollars on them. At any rate, no new posts until Monday.

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

I fooled the gender genie ...

Just for fun, I submitted two of my recent posts to the Gender Genie. Both times it answered that the author of the text is probably male.

I'll admit, I have always been a bit tomboyish and I'm not really into girl stuff like makeup, shoes and jewelry, but I'm not usually mistaken for a man. Except of course back when I lived in Tennessee. I had very short hair then and it really confused the locals, who often called me "sir." Once when a male friend came to visit, we went for a drive and ended up in a little diner in Gate City, VA, just across the border. We were talking about which corners of the world our college friends were inhabiting, and the waitress asked, "So where are you boys from, anyway?" I managed to stutter that I wasn't a boy and then told her where I was from. She said "Oh, my son's 21 and I still call him a boy."

So now I feel like kicking some ass just to prove I'm a man...

Onece again: Awwwww!

A friend of mine is a veterinarian, so she always has a heartbreaking story or two to tell, usually about dogs and cats who are abandoned at the vet's office after they're severely injured. This week it was Abu, a 10-year-old Pomeranian, who had lived with the same family her whole life, but they decided they didn't want her anymore after she got attacked by the neighbor's German Shepherd.




The purple thing the dog is wearing is a bandage--the German Shepherd partially ripped the skin off her thigh. It will heal well, according to my friend. The family said that they didn't want her because she was nippy with their 3-year-old kids (they probably deserved it), but my friend said that Abu is missing her canine and incisor teeth, so her bite is really just ceremonial at this point. I hope that when the people who abandoned her are old and toothless their children dump them in a nursing home and never come visit. (See, another reason not to add commenting ability to this site ... that remark would probably get me torched by people howling "It's just a dog, for chrissakes!"

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Read Empire notes ...

I repeat: read Empire Notes! I had added it to the blogroll last week, but after stopping by there again I felt compelled to evangelize it. He's in Baghdad, and he was one of the only western reporters in Fallujah during the U.S. siege.

I may not be a Grammar God after all ...

Earlier this month I had announced that I was a Grammar God based on the results of one of those silly little online quizzes that one takes instead of actually harnessing the power of cyberspace for anything productive (I'd link to the post but the permalink doesn't actually seem to be permalinking.) Anyway, I was just looking over an entry from yesterday, and I think the following sentence is grammatically fucked:
This was in the early 70s, and popular lore at the time was that drug dealers sold hits of LSD on sugar cubes, so my mother was afraid people were going to think she was running a drug lab when she got to the checkout with boxes and boxes of them.

The problem is with "boxes and boxes of them." It's unclear what "them" refers to, isn't it? The proper thing to do would be to fix it, but them I'd have to come up with a grammatically correct sentence to put in its place. Alas, can one be a Grammar God if one is too lazy to correct one's grammatical mistakes? Or is it an exercise of my godlike powers that I choose to leave the poor sentence writhing in ungrammatical agony? I feel a maniacal laugh coming on ...

Monday, April 19, 2004

This just in ...

Here's a brilliant little flash animation of the IBM corporate anthem. They don't still sing it, do they? Anyway, the animation was done by a guy named Tim, who used to work for IBM (or maybe stil does?). The link reached me via e-mail.

Kids, Kids! It's a Meme! And Don't Talk to Cops!

Yeah, as I've mentioned before, I hate the word "meme," but whatever ... here's a meme I stumbled across at Thoroughly Modern Monyca:
1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 23.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the sentence in your journal along with these instructions.

OK, since I do happen to have a book handy, I'll play along:
"As the carabineros  began to abandon the palace, Allende told his ministers and friends that regardless of the outcome of La Moneda, Chile's war against fascism would have to continue."
From The Murder of Chile  by Samuel Chavkin.

The reason I was at Thoroughly Modern Monyca to begin with was that Frograbbitmonkey sent me there to read Don't Talk To Cops. Y'all should read it as well. (Of course, if you're visiting my blog from outside of the US, you may have to talk to cops after all ...)
A few days ago when I mentioned the Alamo, I forgot to mention that the phrase "Remember the Alamo" doesn't make me think about the actual building itself, but the scale model of the Alamo my brother built out of sugar cubes when he was in junior high. He did a good job. This was in the early 70s, and popular lore at the time was that drug dealers sold hits of LSD on sugar cubes, so my mother was afraid people were going to think she was running a drug lab when she got to the checkout with boxes and boxes of them. My brother's Alamo was such a hit that later, for another project, he built one of the Pyramids of Giza out of sugar cubes as well.

Anyway, yesterday's Raleigh News & Disturber had an article called "Remember A Different Alamo".

Sunday, April 18, 2004

Heat!

Finally, I'm getting what I moved to NC for--it's nice and hot outside. It's something like 84 right now, and it even seems a little cooler than it was earlier. I was beginning to worry that I was going to have to move to Miami because this spring has been so chilly. I've been a gardening fiend this weekend. It's an addiction. Some women can't help but buy shoes; I wear ratty old shoes and buy plants instead. If I were to have a job interview tomorrow I'd be hard-pressed to find my one pair of high heels, but my gardens kick ass.

It's supposed to reach 88 tomorrow. I can't wait.

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Danger! Splenetic geyser of vitriol ahead!

I have a lot of pet peeves. More than you, I'm sure. No, I mean it--my pet peeves could kick your pet peeves' asses. I don't spout off or write about them all the time because a) people who are always spouting off about their pet peeves are pains in the ass; and b) I'm too lazy. Also, many of my pet peeves involve the existence of children, and I'm not always in the mood to piss off pretty much everyone I come in contact with (unless they make the mistake of asking me "Why don't you want children? Don't you like children?" in which case I feel compelled to make a joke involving fava beans and a good chianti).

So I love it when I stumble across something someone else has written about one of my pet peeves. It usually makes me feel a bit vindicated about my (usually) minority and unpopular (but entirely correct, of course) opinion. So today I'm happy to know that I'm not the only person who hates and fears those giant-ass strollers that people with kids are always pushing around. Honestly, I wouldn't feel so hostile toward the very idea of children if if weren't for the behemoth contraptions in which their parents parade them around, expecting the rest of us to part like the Red Sea to let them pass.

Nothing ruins a nice restaurant meal like having to get up and pull your chair aside so that someone who never got the message that yes, your lifestyle must change when you have children, decides that they must eat at a tiny, trendy bistro with their spawn-mobile instead of at Red Lobster or Chili's where they belong. OK actually, one thing is far worse: when parents of ambulatory kids decide that it's perfectly OK to let their kids roam about the restaurant at will, going up to other diners' and grabbing parmesan cheese or dinner rolls off of their tables. That happens to us regularly. Whatever happened to babysitters, anyway? Yeah, they're expensive, but so's the dinner your kids are ruining for everyone else.

See, this is one reason I don't have comments. I know people may very well disagree with me vehemently and think I'm a monster or want to spout off about their god-given "rights" as Americans to eat at tiny, trendy bistros with their squalling, slobbery issue in tow. But having commenting ability here might give the mistaken impression that I actually want to hear about it. Besides, they can always e-mail me, although I know these days that's considered just way too much trouble. Oh well.

Have a swell day, y'all!

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Enjoying my perks ...

I think I mentioned before that one of the cool things about my dj gig at WXDU is that I get to review cds so we can figure out what we want to put on playlist. Occasionally this means listening to a lot of mediocre stuff or downright crap, but often something brilliant comes through my headphones.

Like right now I'm listening to Taking Things Apart by Decomposure (21-year old Canadian Caleb Mueller). I guess technically this would fall into the "experimental electronic" category which ordinarily wouldn't get my attention. I usually don't get too excited about experimental music because its appreciation often requires more cognitive effort than I care to put forth on a regular basis. Maybe it's the organic origin of Mueller's sounds that makes this captivating; all the songs are made of everyday sounds that he's broken down and reassembled using basic sound editing software. Each song is made of exactly what the title says: the track "Scrabble" is from a tape Mueller had made of he and his wife playing Scrabble; "Matches" is all sounds made by matches; "Speech" is one of Dubya's early post-9/11 speeches, with backing percussive sounds and effects made entirely from bits of speech and extraneous background noises like claps and microphone noise (for example he used the "s" sound from "it's" to make a high-hat cymbal sound ... quite cool).

Mueller's liner notes are as interesting as the music itself. (I was nowhere near as articualate when I was 21 ... In fact I'm probably not that articulate now. At least I don't refer to myself with a lower-case "i," though. That gets annoying.) Anyway, even if experimental electronica isn't your thing, the stories behind each song are worth reading.

In other news, I came across another one of those little generators that's amusing for a few minutes at Rum and Monkey. It's Gregor's Semi-Automatic Live Journal Updater. This is what it helped me create:

Today was really bewildering.

I got out of bed just before breakfast because the smell of cooking bacon woke me up.

I feel a bit strange because we've just moved to Idaho and there's a weird smell in the house.

I'm so hardcore. Me and Buzz went to the mall today, and I stole a whole heap of stuff. I got a Good Charlotte CD, a couple of DVDs and some new boots. Buzz got caught, but he fought his way out, and then we stole some lady's car and smashed it into a phone booth.

Last night I had to go and pay Joshua's bail. He's such a jerk. He got arrested for punching the Walmart clerk in the face for refusing to sell him beer. He's only 16!

I want to tell the world to get fucked.

I am really annoyed with those assholes at _are_you_hotter_than_us_?, because I am so much cuter than them, and those photos don't do me justice. They can't reject me, so I'm starting my own rating community. Click here to join (the first five applicants are automatically accepted).

Today, I got a digital camera! Yes! I'm so ugly. Don't look at my photos pleeeeeze.

I want to say thanks to the world for absolutely fucking nothing! You all suck. I feel so alone, no one ever reads this journal, or even comments to let me know that I'm not suffering alone. It's cold here, and I want to die, but I cannot figure out how many of you to take with me when I go.

I went to the doctor yesterday, and he said I have bipolar disorder, which makes me different enough to be interesting, but the same as all the other cool people with bipolar disorder.

You should all do this quiz! It's amazingly accurate. You just put in your name and birthday, and it will tell you YOUR IQ.

I like SweetTarts.

That's enough for now. But I'll leave you with this thought - sharing your life with strangers on the internet is the cheapest form of therapy available. Leave a comment and tell me I'm beautiful.

Created with the Gregor's Semi-Automatic LiveJournal Updater™. Update your journal today!
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Now I don't believe I've ever read a Live Journal, but they tell me it's where all the teen types go to blog and therefore it can get rather silly over there. But honestly if the kids over there are writing about crashing stolen cars and punching Wal-Mart clerks, it sounds a lot more interesting than some of the so-called "A-list" bloggers everyone links to.

Monday, April 12, 2004

F*** the Alamo!

Despite spending almost eight of my formative childhood years in Texas, where you're taught that the Alamo is a shrine and that Travis, Bowie, Crockett et al. are some kind of saints, I have no plans to see The Alamo. Fortunately, because it didn't do so well this weekend there won't be much social pressure for me to see the film (believe me, it gets really tiring to hear everyone tell you that you absolutely HAVE to go see Forrest Gump or The English Patient repeatedly day after day for weeks). And I really appreciated this column by Oscar Villalon in the SF Chronicle: Remember the Alamo, sure, as long as we remember it for what it really is: a symbol, for many, of something sinister.

Death!

Two years ago today, well, not exactly today but two years ago the day after Easter, whichever day that was, I came to work to discover that a co-worker had been killed the day before. The small plane she and her husband were flying had fallen from the sky for some reason during its approach to RDU airport. That particular co-worker drove me up the wall and I had wished several times that she would just disappear from my life, so of course I felt like crap when she died. I vowed never again to think ill of anyone in such a way. Of course the thing that reminded me of the whole incident today was that I happened to think very ill of someone here at work ...

But then that reminded me of something that I always wonder about: there seems to be a general taboo against speaking ill of the dead, even if the dead had been a general shit his or her entire life. Why? Does it have something to do with the fact that since the dead aren't here to defend themselves you have to be nice? Or maybe their spirit will swoop down and strangle you in the night if you're not careful? (Maybe this taboo is a cultural thing--for all I know somewhere in the world speaking ill of the dead is considered an important part of the mourning ritual. Maybe entire communities get toasted on whatever the local spirit is and try to top each other heaping scorn upon the departed: "He was a no-good bum!" "He was a pain in the ass and I'm glad he's finally gone!")

So now when Jesse Helms finally kicks the bucket, people will generally think I'm some kind of satanist if I say "Hooray, there's one fewer evil racist death-squad lover in the world! If I believed in hell I'd hope he was rotting or burning or freezing there!" Just because a bastard dies he stops being a bastard? What a bunch of silliness.

Darn, I prefer Harp ...

Thanks to Frograbbitmonkey for pointing me toward this: Guinness really is good for you.

So now when I have my guilty pleasure meal of fish & chips in Durham's very own Irish Pub (called the James Joyce, of course), I can justify it dietarily by washing it down with a Guinness.

Apropos of nothing ...

Looks like mash-ups are going mersh ... David Bowie wants you to mash up his music, and to get you to do so he's dangling an Audi as a prize. The thing is, you've got to mash Bowie (something from his latest album) with Bowie (anything), which to me is like inbreeding. I want mash-ups with hybrid vigor.

But I don't suppose Bowie & Audi could encourage you to mash up anything but Bowie--they wouldn't be able to use anything else because they don't own the rights. Which is why I think mash-ups really have limited mersh value--you're limited to what you can get the rights to. Although it seems like all the old farts are ready and willing to cash in these days. (My use of the term "old fart" is not meant to disparage David Bowie, whom I like. Nonetheless he's an old fart.)

Thursday, April 08, 2004

More promiscuous bloghopping ...

Responding last week to the killing and mutilation of the American contractors in Fallujah, Billmon at Whiskey Bar uses photos of lynchings here in the US to point out that "the destruction and, yes, savage mutilation of other human beings isn't a uniquely Iraqi, or Arab or Islamic spectator sport." (I reached Whiskey Bar via Barefoot and Naked. Whiskey Bar also provides a link to Without Sanctuary, an exhibit of lynching photographs.)

Wednesday, April 07, 2004

Ack, Ack, Ack

I was catching up over at This Modern World earlier, and he had a link to this bit that appeared at The Onion right around this time last year. I remember reading it last year and thinking it was hilarious, but it's even funnier now--in a sad and scary way.

Anywho, back to the war here at home: cheating employees out of overtime isn't just a game Wal-Mart likes to play. if you missed the NY Times article Sunday about companies shaving hours off of employees time reports to avoid paying overtime (or just to save a few bucks), you should check it out. I followed a link from Tom Tomorrow to South Knox Bubba to Newsrack, whose proprietor, Thomas, is having a contest for the best letter of outrage to any of the companies mentioned in the article. Now that's a great way to blow off some steam and make the companies' PR people work a little overtime of their own, but it's not the way the workers are going to get what they are due once and for all. It starts with a U ...

... Which just made me dredge up an old memory. Several years ago (1995? '96?) I had an opportunity to spend an entire night on the picket lines of the Detroit News/Free Press strike (the papers go out in the wee hours, so that's the time to picket). Some of the strikers had spelled out a word on the ground (I think they used planks, but I've forgotten details) designed to be seen by news helicopters. I walked over to see what it was, and I was a little puzzled ... "ONION?" Why did they go to all that trouble to spell out "ONION?" (apparently a couple of the planks had gotten knocked out of alignment a bit).

You wouldn't know it by reading my writing, but ...

I am a GRAMMAR GOD!
How grammatically sound are you?

I don't usually do a lot of quizzes, and when I do I don't report them here, but when someone calls me a grammar god I feel compelled to herald the news. Bow down before me, y'all.

Tuesday, April 06, 2004

Just a quick comment ...

... on another of yesterday's news stories: In an NY Times article about a study suggesting that music downloading doesn't actually hurt music sales, the music industry's reply is quoted as asking "If file sharing has no negative impact on the purchasing patterns of the top selling records, how do you account for the fact that, according to SoundScan, the decrease of Top 10 selling albums in each of the last four years is: 2000, 60 million units; 2001, 40 million units; 2002, 34 million units; 2003, 33 million units?"

Um, I dunno, maybe the top 10 selling albums increasingly sucked over the last 4 years?

Soapbox time again!

I had an urge yesterday to jump up on my soapbox but my sore knee made it hard to take the step (and my aching shoulder and back would have prevented me from gesticulating wildly, which is essential on a soapbox). But I'm feeling better today, so ...

This sentence in an LA Times article yesterday made me chuckle: "The stock market is finally getting what it wanted, as the economy begins to show robust job growth." I just got tickled at the idea of "The Market" as this entity making demands, and I had this image of a huge stone statue breathing fire in a temple high above a village while guys in suits do a ritual dance outside. Soon the high priest comes out of the temple and says "He likes the new jobs but now he’s threatening to raise interest rates. We must feed him more poor people!" So the suits do the layoff dance while their henchmen drag some villagers into the temple to toss them into the flames. Soon the statue is spitting out gobs of money, which the suits gather quickly before any of it can drift down to the village below.

And apparently they've been very adept lately at snatching up the cash, according to an op-ed piece in yesterday's NY Times about a study showing that workers have crap to show for the recent "recovery." Instead, most of the gains have gone to "boost profits, lower prices, or increase C.E.O. compensation." According to the study's author: "This is the first time we've ever had a case where two years into a recovery, corporate profits got a larger share of the growth of national income than labor did. Normally labor gets about 65 percent and corporate profits about 15 to 18 percent. This time profits got 41 percent and labor [meaning all forms of employee compensation, including wages, benefits, salaries and the percentage of payroll taxes paid by employers] got 38 percent."

Meanwhile, the bosses' lies (and their thugs) are working overtime to keep workers from unionizing, which is the first step workers can take to get the wealth their labor has earned.

Monday, April 05, 2004

Navel gazing ...

I have some comments and observations rattling around in my head that would probably be actually interesting if I wrote them down, but ...

I'm consumed with petty aches and pains right now, which pretty much derails every thought and brings my mind right back to me, me, me, as in "poor me, woe is me, it sucks to be me." When one is not in pain one forgets how cranky pain can make a person. Right now I'm trying to make myself think "Life is good, life is good, life is good" to counteract the grouchifying effects of my various woes.

I was practically limping into work this morning because there was an unexplained pain in my left knee. Probably related to the fact that occasionally when I kneel down one of my knees will make a loud and painful "CRACK!" They're just bad knees. My right shoulder was also on fire with pain this morning, but I know what that is: bursitis. I've been getting it since high school. It comes and goes as it pleases and there's nothing to do but take some ibuprofen or naproxen sodium. I chose the latter (aka Alleve) because it seems to work, but then it bothers my stomach. So now I'm chomping antacids to counteract that, but it's not helping and I'm feeling a little sick. The knee and shoulder are feeling better, but because there is obviously someone sticking pins into a me voodoo doll, my back (also bad) is now starting to ache.

So if you want to read something pithy, worldly or wise you're going to have to go somewhere else right now. Check back later, OK?

Thursday, April 01, 2004

My Boy ....

I love this picture Mark took last weekend of my boy Gomey (aka Mr. Bob Gomez, First Mate on the SV Sassafrass):