Monday, June 30, 2008

Saturday, June 28, 2008

"Frankly, I'm getting a little sick of being labeled with these kind of destructive stereotypes."

It's still bad out there.

Now, as the waters recede, some Iowans are finding themselves victimized again -- by their state's self-destructive work ethic. Blogger / flood victim Dave Burge reports from the scene.

But fear not; the Turkeys' stupid pink locker room was unharmed.

On a serious note, the Iowa City animal shelter needs help feeding and caring for pets whose humans can't keep them in their temporary/new housing. If I don't stop looking at pictures of kittens who need my help, I won't be able to make rent next week. *sigh* I've been encouraged to head out to Waukesha and adopt a refugee from Iowa, but I'm already outnumbered here, four legs to two.

Shhh! I'm on the phone with Jaber al-Banna!

Feingold fights for your right to plot with known terrorists. The article also contains an entertaining quote from Dick Durbin where he claims to believe the Constitution grants rights. C'mon, comedy has to be plausible...

I marvel at the narcissm of people who seriously believe their phone calls are so completely fascinating the Bush administration--if not the Chimpy himself!!--wants to listen in. Like he doesn't have better things to care about the sawbuck you're putting on the F-Pats or the contents of your baby's diapers or that you're ordering the lo mein instead of your usual General Tso. And the conversations you're having with the Izzadeen al-Qassam Brigades about that ammunition? Those are private, dammit. I'm glad I can count on Mr. Feingold to make sure no one finds out.

Anyway. Who's running against this clown in 2010? I'll be happy to volunteer. It will be futile, but it might be therapeutic.

(Who's Jaber al-Banna, you say?)

Friday, June 27, 2008

Oh, look. Nannies for grown-ups.

The DNC thinks its members shouldn't be allowed to choose tasty, familiar foods. Is this an admission that DNC members are too stupid to be trusted to make decisions?
In promoting healthy eating habits, the Democratic guidelines say every meal should be nutritious and include “at least three of the following colors: red, green, yellow, purple/blue and white.”

Looks like a bag of M&Ms is a perfect meal!

I don't know if I want to be the guy with the bar/fast-food joint across the street from the convention. On one hand, people are gonna be sneaking out for snacks. On the other, too many smelly hippies trying to use the bathroom without paying.

What I really want to know: Is there going to be a smoking area for the Big O! to get a hit of nicotine before his big speech?!?! Smoking! That's a form of aggravated assault!! *snort*

RELATED: A commenter at Tim Blair calls these guys "the four doofuses of the Apocolypse." Note the wrongly-installed helmets.

I have wasted my life.

Mother of missing kid has 5 kids at the age of 21.
Never should have bought that home computer when I was 13, Ma...

I know I'm not allowed to have any opinions about child-raising, but I like to think I'd least learn the baby-sitter's real name before sending my kid out with her.

(Unrelated: Leinie's Summer Shandy is a poor substitute for an actual Radler.)


What has been seen cannot be unseen

This is gonna haunt my nightmares tonight.

I prefer to think of myself as a thistle.

I am an

What Flower
Are You?

Or a Pustenblume. They're really my favorite flower...

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Can't-do Society

Victor Davis Hanson has a really good essay up at National Review pointing out that even though the physical means of accomplishing large infrastructure in America have never been easier--and we have so much more knowledge to make them better than before--we've lost the mental/emotional capacity to do so. For good reason (well...prudent on the part of the bridge designers; lousy on the parts of the protestors and litigants):
Action entails risks and consequences. Mere thinking doesn’t. In our litigious society, as soon as someone finally does something, someone else can become wealthy by finding some fault in it. Meanwhile, a less fussy and more confident world abroad drills and builds nuclear plants, refineries, dams, and canals to feed and fuel millions who want what we take for granted.

And bad:
Finally, high technology and the good life have turned us into utopians, fussy perfectionists who demand heaven on earth. Anytime a sound proposal seems short of perfect, we consider it not good, rather than good enough.

I've noticed this myself--I have zero power to affect a refinery or anything useful, but I've been putting off small projects because I doubt my skills.


You've gotta be kidding me.

The next time I spend hours lying in wait to kill someone I've been threatening to kill for years, please engage Dahmer's lawyer to pretend I didn't really know it was wrong.


We keep voting the wrong way because our brains are “physically affected by stress” and “neurally shaped by past conservative framing.”

"past conservative framing" seems to be code for what used to be called "good upbringing." You know--treat everyone the same regardless of superficialities like skin, work hard to support yourself and your family instead of sucking up handouts, make your own choices and accept consequences thereof--can't have that now, can we??

(Aside: Lately I've been noticing a lot of leftist/eco-whacko womyn with multiple children living in ZIP codes with low population densities--you know, the stuff they think us "wrong-way" types shouldn't be allowed to choose. Regulating lives and fighting "incorrect behavior" begins at home, ladies...fight the hypocrisy!! And stop buying so damn many shoes, it's Bad For the Teh Planet.)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Do not feed the cows.

Beware of Cows

In which I wonder why I'm still here

Glass in the bus shelter outside work was shot out again. I thought it was twice in ten days, but the security guard assured me it was the fourth time in three weeks.

Could be worse, I suppose. I could live in Madison. I think I've eaten drive-through fast food twice in the last calendar year--but suddenly I'm craving a Whopper with cheese.

Yeah, all those people who think government should shut down businesses and regulate other people's food intake based on their personal preferences get to vote, too.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Good news, everyone!

This refinery is one of two or three (I can't remember exactly) that produces the odd formulation for SE Wisconsin.
WHITING, Ind. -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has approved the final state permit that BP needed to start work on the expansion of its oil refinery along Lake Michigan.

Wackos' efforts to derail the much-needed expansion remain undeterred.

(Read that title in a Professor Farnsworth voice for best effect.)

Monday, June 23, 2008

Useless historical fact of the day.

You can learn a whole lot of useless stuff by hitting the "Random article" button on Wikipedia.
By the start of the 20th century, eight out of ten Americans could not buy yellow margarine, and those that could had to pay a hefty tax on it. Bootleg colored margarine became common

Bootleg. Margarine. I guess it's not silly when you realize I'll be bootlegging lightbulbs in the not-distant future...

And look at all the people trying to regulate people's consumption of margarine and shortening in the 21st century.
Post-war, the margarine lobby gained power and, little by little, the main margarine restrictions were lifted, the last state to do so being Wisconsin in 1967.

The ISU library has six boxes of material--records, newspaper clippings, etc--about the 1943 "Oleomargarine Controversy" in which a professor resigned after dairy farmers tried to get the U to rescind a pamphlet recommending margarine be used in wartime. I miss academic libraries; if I didn't have to earn a living I'd hang out in academic libraries all day and eventually write books.

Haven't seen this around the blogosphere...

Sweden's Parliament just passed a bill that will allow "Sweden's National Defense Radio Establishment to monitor citizens' phone calls, text messages, e-mails, and Internet use without a court order." It sounds like the old FISA thing all the liberals hate, except it's more than phone calls and it's ALL communications, not just those directed toward known terrorist-related phone numbers overseas.

Remember this the next time some doped-up "progressive" thinks the U.S. should be more like Europe or touts Sweden as example of progressive government to emulate...

Sunday, June 22, 2008

That explains how I slept through yesterday...

While the rest of the species is descended from apes, redheads are descended from cats.

Mark Twain

The other explanation is "salmonella." Long night Friday--serves me right for eating a salad.

If you're at the Brewers game today and you're seated by a fat woman with a SpongeBob lunchbox taking too many pictures of outfielders, say hi, 'cause that's me.

Friday, June 20, 2008


The Big O! has a new Seal of the United States of America with an O logo instead of the American flag and the motto "VERO POSSUMUS."

Here I thought lefties loved Canada and PBS...surely someone in his campaign staff or supporters should have made the connection between "possumus" and a fine CBC show aired weekly on PBS stations around the nation, but especially in Iowa, for years:

Quando omni flunkus moritati!

Happy Solstice.

Today's Wizard of Id (click to enlarge):

No kidding.

Fortunately, it's all downhill from here.

...and the answer is "Duh."

Everyone's blogging about the girls in Massachusetts who made a pact to get knocked up simultaneously. An editorial on Boston WBZ asks Is Shame Gone From Pop Culture? And I say, "Duh...".

In the sidebar of that very editorial is a link to a slideshow of "Celebrity Bump Watch." No, I have no idea how these girls thought our culture glorifies illegitimate births and measures a woman's worth by her reproductive status. Dumbasses.

Bizarre as it is, I'm jealous. These stupid gits get free baby-sitting at school so it all seems normal and even though they're parents, they'll still get to go to prom and cheerlead and happy crap like that. They're being feted by every subculture but the feminazis--young mothers! Free to exert their sexuality as they saw fit! Meanwhile, I've spent the past 15 years being marginalized, ridiculed, ostracized...if only there had been homeless guys in the pre-industrial village where I reached puberty. *mutter*

I was reading a little Phyllis Chesler this afternoon, and a quote about how she respects women with the "courage to resist the marriage and motherhood mandate" stuck out because it takes no courage at all to *not* join a club that wouldn't accept your application. Really., how 'bout those Brewers relievers?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

It's only four hours to Cedar Falls...

And although auction items are still being collected, the list to date includes a basketball signed by the 2008 Kansas University national championship team, a Brett Favre autographed jersey, a Peyton Manning autographed jersey, an autographed Kampman Pro Bowl jersey and a football signed by 2008 Super Bowl champions Tom Coughlin (head coach) and Eli Manning (quarterback), as well as dozens of other jerseys and items from the A-P graduates' pro teams.


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Off-season Schadenfreude

Kirk Ferentz is as bad at covering up rape as he is at coaching against Iowa State. There's not as much "joy" in this one as most Hawkeye schadenfreude because you know it's going to be the latter that gets him fired--who cares about rape as long as they win? Hawkeyes. *spit*

Good baseball last night
but I'm ready for some football already. I coaxed a co-worker into coming out to the game with me tonight; I hope they've got a long ball or two left. :P

Citizens of Milwaukee!

Do our work for us!

I like amateur pictures of weather disasters. But I've mostly been looking at those on Flickr.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Third biggest hailstone!

Always click on the NOAA Public Information Statements. You never know what will be there.

Statement as of 5:00 PM CDT on June 17, 2008

... 3rd largest hailstone in state history occurred on June 7 2008...

This information is slightly delayed... and is from the severe
weather outbreak on June 7th of this year that affected much of
southern Wisconsin.

It has been determined that a 5 inch diameter hailstone fell
approximately 2 miles east-northeast of Delafield at about 435 PM on
June 7 2008. This was measured... and then confirmed by a photo
submission. The precise location was just west of Pewaukee
Lake... and just to the east of Highway 83 to the north of
naga-Waukee Gold course.

This hail report corresponds with other large hail reports from
Waukesha County that day... with a fair number of golfball... to just
shy of softball... sized reports being received.

The hardest hit area by large hail appears to be anywhere from
Oconomowoc to Delafield and Pewaukee... and then south to the west
side of Waukesha. This is approximated by the northwest quadrant of
Waukesha County.

The 5-inch diameter hailstone ranks as the 3rd largest in Wisconsin
history... based on available records. The largest was a 5.7 inch
diameter hailstone that fell on may 22 1921 on the north side of
Wausau /Marathon County/. The second largest was a 5.5 inch diameter
hailstone that fell... coincidentally... one year ago to the date of
the Delafield event on June 7 2007. This hailstone fell in Port
Edwards /Wood County/.

Here is a ranking of the top hail events... in terms of largest
diameters... on record in Wisconsin.

... size... ... location... ... County... ... date...
5.70 N side of Wausau Marathon may 22 1921
5.50 Port Edwards wood Jun 07 2007
5.00 2ene Delafield Waukesha Jun 07 2008
4.50 8ne Merrill Lincoln Jul 16 1997
4.50 4se Oakdale Monroe Jun 01 2000
4.50 1ne River Falls St. Croix Jun 19 1988
4.25 3nw Lake Mills Jefferson Apr 13 2006

4.00 multiple events listed in storm reports database

If anybody has video or pictures of hail stones equal to... or
greater than baseball size /2.75 inches in diameter/... they are
encouraged to relay them to the National Weather Service in
Sullivan. You can contact the webmaster account at:

W-mkx.Webmaster@noaa.Gov /all lowercase/

Now you can impress at your next cocktail party. Or something.


This might get Hollywood and the multicultural grievance industry to notice there was a natural disaster in Redneckloserland...
The flood waters that devastated much of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, also have damaged historic records and artifacts in the Mother Mosque of America, one of the first permanent structures in the United States that was designed and built to serve as a mosque.

Sean Penn and Louis Farrakhan in 5...4...3...

Eh. Seems like a lot of collateral damage from the Rove-Bush weather machine just to get one building.

Rush seems to think no one cares because most of the victims were white. From the maps, I'm thinking there are probably quite a few undocumented Iowans illegal aliens who didn't bother to stick around and file claims for government assistance. They just haven't reached critical mass yet (and now they're reaching it somewhere else...probably Wisconsin).

Monday, June 16, 2008

Aw, crap.

I'd just managed to forget about this.
When I got to work this morning, there were three new bullet holes in the bus shelter out front.

But the bullet hole in the front window on the second floor has been fixed, so.

More music for pressing the same button over and over and over and over for eight hours

Don Henley - "Boys of Summer"

The Ataris - "Boys of Summer"

The Bangles - "Hazy Shade of Winter"

I hate summer.

It's going to be a long summer.


Meanwhile, O's channeling Bill Cosby:
“Don’t get carried away with that eighth-grade graduation,” he said, bringing many members of the congregation to their feet, applauding. “You’re supposed to graduate from eighth grade.”
No arguments from me--I had that conversation at work on Friday, albeit about us cracker kids from Nowheresville. And today the same people who wanted the Coz drawn and quartered for daring to criticize the "black community" are swooning over the honeyed truths dripping from the sensuous lips of the Big O, with no sense of irony. Or shame.

I envy those without the ability to think critically, they seem to be a lot happier than I am. Except the envirowhackos, but they get off on being miserable because they CARE so much.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Celebrate diversity and tolerance!

Get the airbrush and insert Trotsky joke here.
On Friday, Wisconsin Democrats unanimously passed a resolution asking that national Democratic Party leaders refuse to seat one Clinton delegate, Debra Bartoshevich of Waterford, at the convention because she said she will vote for McCain.


Should have kept her mouth shut and just quietly done the nasty deed behind the corrugated "privacy" panel...

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Happy Flag Day

I just now noticed that the EU seems to have copied Betsy Ross. *blink*

Friday, June 13, 2008

Still fascinated by Flood '08

The Cedar Rapids Gazette has the best coverage of any Iowa outlet.

Checks earmarked for flood relief can be mailed to The Salvation Army at P.O. Box 8056, Cedar Rapids, 52406.

Updates: 83 of the state's 99 counties have been declared disaster areas, and my brother's National Guard unit has been activated. Crazy.

Hey, Barack!

You claim you can "slow the oceans from rising"--how about waving your hands over a couple of rivers in some states that gave you more convention delegates than Hillary? Either you're a pretty impotent Messiah, or you're an ungrateful brat. Or both.

I'm disturbed that there's a major disaster going on in the heartland, and a) neither candidate appears to notice (this headline says O "may discuss it" and then doesn't mention it anywhere in the article) and b) no one in the MSM has bothered to ask them about it. Maybe the Electoral College doesn't really keep us from being slaves/pawns of CA, NY, TX, and FL.

Good grief.

Music for pressing the same button over and over and over and over for eight hours

PM Dawn - "Set Adrift on Memory Bliss"

Smashing Pumpkins - "Perfect"*

Traveling Wilburys - "Handle With Care"

*Billy Corgan: "Billy Corgan, Smashing Pumpkins."
Homer Simpson: [shakes hands] "Homer Simpson, smiling politely."

Thursday, June 12, 2008

God has a sense of humor.

A casualty of powerful storms that hit the Kansas State University campus on Wednesday was the Wind Erosion Lab, which the university said was destroyed by an apparent tornado.

Heh heh.

I guess it's 1993 now.

File this under "holy crap."
The only thing missing in this picture of DSM is the trees banging into the spillway...

My family's all safe on a bluff in western Iowa, except the ones who are safe in Omaha and Oregon.

It seems like floods are slowly cutting Milwaukee off from the rest of the state, but I've got a two-month supply of cat food and a fridge full of beer, so bring it on!

UPDATE: Roundup of Iowa blogger flood coverage.

Now I'm craving Chick-Fil-A


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

George Bush hates white people?

This cracked me up. Except for Rush getting Cedar Rapids and Cedar Falls mixed up--but if Obama can get a pass for mixing up Sioux City and Sioux Falls, which are in different STATES, Rush can get one for confusing two cities in the same state along the same river (dunno why Cedar Falls ever changed its name from "Sturgis Falls").

RUSH: Have you been watching the television and seeing pictures of this flooding in Illinois and in Cedar Rapids, Iowa? Levees have broken in Lawrenceville, Illinois. The town is flooded. Where is FEMA? Where's the president? Cedar Rapids is on the verge of the same thing happening. They got sandbags out there protecting their levees. Where's FEMA? Where's the president? Where are all the people that care? We care. The president's in Europe, that's right. Where's Cheney? Where's Colin Powell? Where's somebody to go out there and hug some people?

Like I said before, the worst part of the Flood of '93 was the footage of Bill Clinton groping victims and pretending to care...

Meanwhile, Gary Varvel salutes Indiana's flood-relief volunteers:

Well. This will clear out my Netflix queue.

He's got a Constitutional right to spew crap and I've got a Constitutional right to refuse to contribute to his care and feeding. I guess it works out.
Why has John Cusack jumped into the political arena with a video saying John McCain is a war-profiteering clone of President George W. Bush?

I was unaware beer distributorships made money off of national defense... *blink*

I have the usual list of reasons I'm not looking forward to President McCain, but keeping Iraq out of the hands of Iran and Syria is not on it.

And this, this is just ignorant: "keeping our troops in harm's way in Iraq..." They're soldiers. Their job description is "going into harm's way." They know it when they sign up, and God bless 'em, I'm glad they do. But I've never figured out how keeping them fenced up where it's safe and refusing to let them do their job because they might get hurt isn't condescending bullshit.

That's a lot of water.

I read a single sentence in the middle of an AP "Midwest floods" story yesterday about the Cedar River at Cedar Falls, Iowa, and I shrugged...I lived there for three springs and the area on the bottom left of this picture, as well as the left between the cloverleaf and the river, was covered in water for at least two of them.

But it seems much worse this year. The bridge never collapsed before...

(Also, there are no falls in the Cedar River near Cedar Falls. No one told me this until after I'd spent most of a summer hiking up and down the paved trail along the river looking for them.)

Cute town--good local arts scene, good locally-owned restaurants, three quilt shops, beautiful library, airport ten minutes from my apartment, could do my grocery shopping within walking distance, miles and miles of woods to walk through without a long drive--if I hadn't been the only unmarried childless woman over 23 in the entire county, I might have stayed. (Advice to funny-looking 28-year-old women with intimidating job titles: don't move to a small town in the middle of nowhere if it has a state college with 75% female undergraduates, or you will never go on a date with a man younger than 70 without driving two hours to get there...)

Actually, Cedar Falls would be a good place to retire.

The AP is also throwing around 1993 references:
Rising waters also threatened Palo to the south. City officials there urged residents to evacuate, predicting flood levels as much as 2 feet higher than 1993 levels, which left much of the state under water.
There's a nuclear power plant (build more!) in Palo. I'm sure they've planned for this. I'm surprised the AP didn't pick up on that, to spread more enviro-FUD.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Bavaria Part VI: Landshut/Burg Trausnitz

Nice shoes

After Schleißheim we went to Landshut, which is on the Isar like München and Freising. We parked a short distance from the Burg and walked through a wooded area with flowers. There was time to kill before the guided tour, so we had a Radler (beer and lemonade--better than it sounds, like a Leinie's Summer Shandy) in the courtyard and looked out over the river.

Burg Trausnitz (my pictures on Flickr) was founded in the 13th century and expanded/redecorated over the next several hundred years by various dukes. The interior was furnished with stucco, fresco, inlaid and carved wood, Majolica stoves, and--exciting!--early 17th century tapestries commissioned by a duke to commemorate some of his military/diplomatic achievements, some of which never actually happened. (Does anyone read this stuff?) And the chapel was gorgeous. But don't take my word for it--take the virtual tour. Note the donkey.

This was quite interesting, because it was a real residence, used by real knights and dukes over time.

On the way back to Freising, Roland bought me the best ice cream bar I have ever tasted in my entire life (I'm not sure I told him why the name cracked me up, heh).

In the evening, we went to the Therme in Erding. I was initially skeptical, because hanging out in a bathing suit is not my idea of a good time, but it was very relaxing. Full of teenagers, but they were easily ignored in the warm water. Lovely warm mineral water. We soaked for hours.

Pictures!! (NOT of the Therme. No one wants to see that, least of all me :)


I've recently acquired a new nephew named "Malcom." Yes. "Malcom." I oscillate between feeling bad about spelling it "Malcolm" on postcards from Germany and wanting to ask his parents how they could hate him so much when he was only a few hours old.

An unpopular name - like Alec, Ernest, Ivan, or Malcolm - is more likely to spell trouble than favourites Michael, Matthew or Christopher, according to research presented Saturday at the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of B.C.

``There is a positive correlation between unpopular first names and juvenile delinquency,'' said Daniel Lee, an economics professor at Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania.

Using regression models, Lee and co-author David Kalist found that regardless of race, the more unique, rare and unpopular the name is, the more likely it popped up in youth crime files 10 to 18 years later.

Oops. Fortunately, correlation is not causality, although it's not difficult to imagine that a childhood spent "correcting" adults who pronounce or spell your name right would internalize an unhealthy disregard for authority and societal conventions...
However, research also showed that the PNI of a juvenile's name is also associated with other factors, such as socio-economic conditions and family structure.

``The PNI is positively associated when the kid is living with both parents and negatively associated when living only with the mother,'' said Lee, adding that juveniles with more unpopular names also tended to live in the state's more disadvantaged counties.

I think Bill Cosby said something about this a few years ago.


Silver lining

MMSD rain gauges measured totals of 9.55 inches at N. Teutonia Ave. on Milwaukee's north side near Glendale

I guess there are some advantages to renting a crappy apartment on the second floor. I'm dry and generally uninconvenienced. I took a scenic detour past the Milwaukee River on my way home from work and it's higher than I've ever seen it, but not out of control.

It's only rained for what, four days? Not quite Iowa 1993 yet--rained for six weeks. Another bonus: no one in IA, WI, or IN will have to watch Bill Clinton's lip quiver as he gropes young female flood victims and claims he's feeling their pain. *shudder*

Iowa City looks a little like 1993...

I've resembled this remark...

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Rhetorical question

Why did I ever think baseball would be a fun way to kill time until football?

The Iowa State Fair's theme this year is "U Gotta Love It", ensuring I won't be caught dead there. I've spent the past two summers being wistful and nostalgic about not being able to rationalize time off to drive to another state's fair, and one glance at the website killed it.

Although I note "The 2008 Iowa State Fair’s free stages are packed with the summer’s hottest acts ranging from Lady Antebellum and Foghat to Lou Christie and Bob the Builder." I'm pretty sure the last time Foghat was the summer's hottest act I was being potty trained...


I saw a call for entries for self-portrait dolls today that included the following statement:
The Totem exhibition recognises we live in a growing culture of alienation which results in an increasing suspicion of strangers and shame of the self.

Bwah? I'll buy "suspicion of strangers" because it's healthy to have some for self-preservation, but "shame of the self"? Are you freaking kidding me? Our culture has all but abolished shame (the exception appears to be women who wear double-digit sizes...which is a rant for another day).

For proof I give you any "who's the baby's daddy" episode of any daytime talk show, Planned Parenthood's "I had an abortion" T-shirts, the Folsom Street fair in San Francisco, Tila Tequila (warning, vulgar), any given Saturday night on Water Street. I won't even get into the sense of entitlement to "free government money" held by corporate fat-cats as well as private citizens who prefer not to work, or the whole "Obama is my Savior" movement.

Nope, this is a culture that publicly celebrates behaviors that people would have minimized out of shame even thirty years ago. I say "minimized" because when people did them, they didn't proudly broadcast the details to total strangers non-freaking-stop.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Bavaria Part V: Neues Schloss Schleißheim


Wednesday after a traditional Bavarian breakfast (Ei, Käse, Brotchen, Kaffee, Orangensaft, Schinken, Nutella) in a cafe next to the abandoned tractor factory in Freising, we went to Schleißheim and rattled around the new palace of Maximillian II Emanuel, who planned on being a ruler of Bavaria in the 18th century but failed. The palace has been mostly restored and houses a lot of paintings from the era. I wasn't able to get pictures of the tapestries or the bedroom furnishings--light degrades textiles--so I went nuts on the paint and plasterwork (photos at Flickr, of course). There's a virtual tour on the official website that shows the paintings and furnishings, including original textiles.

Note to self: learn more about history.

Friday, June 6, 2008


I thought the Internet had everything, but I can't find Charles Schulz's 50th anniversary tribute strips. I cut them out of the Des Moines paper when they first ran, but I can't blog a shoebox of clippings...

Neither the Library of Congress nor the National Archives have anything really good, except a picture of Eisenhower addressing troops before they left England.


It's Friday night and I'm home alone browsing the LOC's collection of digitized 1887 to 1914 baseball cards. Maybe Yost should start this guy in place of Dave Bush.

Obama is not Christ.

I've always been skeptical of people who claim they can read God's mind, but I'm feeling pretty certain the real Christ is not amused by Barack or his disciples.

Obama’s apostles are hard to dismiss. Oprah simply calls him “The One,” because “we need politicians who know how to be the truth.” (Jesus says in John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth ...”) Oprah goes on to say Obama will help us “evolve to a higher plane,” which would put Obama in the role of our Intelligent Designer.

Believing that has to be an E-ticket straight to Hieronymous Bosch's worst nightmares.

After posting a link to a column explaining O! in some New Age folderol I don't understand, Jonah says, "Obama willing, my re-education facility will be somewhere in the mountains, with a nice view."

I want mine to be in Beverly Shores, Indiana, where Oprah lives (if she'll let infidels within 10 miles of her estate...). It's the only way I'll be able to afford to visit the Dunes after Obama's tax hikes.

Today's Two Lumps

The Two Lumps website. Recommended for cat people.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Change I can believe in.

Iowahawk has not suspended his campaign for POTUS. I'm particularly impressed by his environmental policy, which includes shooting down the private jets of "celebrity assholes" and "direct[ing] the Interior Department to establish wild man-eating cougar preserves in Berkeley CA, Boulder CO, Madison WI, and Park Slope, Brooklyn."

Although that does seem kind of cruel to the cougars. Not a lot of meat on your typical vegan Code Pinko or toilet-paper eschewing starlet...

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Bavaria Part IV: München Dienstag

Tuesday was foggy and damp, and we got a late start. Indian food for lunch in Freising, then we drove to the U-bahn station near Allianz Arena and took the U-bahn to the Alte Pinakothek.

There are three Pinakotheks, housing art from different periods, and since I can see art after 1800 quite readily in the Midwest I picked the Alte Pinakothek, 14th through 18th centuries. I'm not sure we even got to the 18th century before my brain gave out. Hundreds and hundreds of 14th and 15th century paintings, a room full of Rubens (including one canvas 6m high), saints and flowers, and a whole bunch of naked baby Jesuses. Germans painted skinny baby Jesuses and Italians painted fat ones. Huh.

Gorgeous, all of it. Roland later remarked that he has ruined the MAM for me forever, which was probably his diabolical plan.

Anyway, it was a nasty day and I only took two decent pictures.

Alte Pinakothek
Stairs, Alte Pinakothek.

Wieviel ist das Bier in die Fenster?
Wieviel ist das Bier in die Fenster? The one with the hop-pity goodness?

Note they are selling MGD for twice what good beer goes for. Windell would be most displeased.

When I woke up, I thought it was Wednesday...

According to Lileks, today is Old Maid's Day. YES! I have a DAY! Until there's a "Divorcee Day" I can finally hold my head up when being ridiculed by my bitter betters for my failure to become a Real Woman on a Special Princess Day Where Even Though He Was A Lying Cheating Bastard At Least I Had Public Proof I Wasn't Completely Worthless like every other woman over 30 who isn't a *cough* secret practitioner of the Sapphic arts (no, seriously; when did women who are not attractive to men become expected to mate with other women instead? "A is false" does not imply "B is true"!), because I have a DAY! In your face!

It's also Hug A Cat Day, which didn't go over so well at Radishhof. Choose the cat you plan to hug very carefully, and timing will also be a consideration. Hug first, THEN open the tuna. Ow.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

On my way to the baseball game

I heard on the radio that Hillary offered to be Obama's VP.

My first thought was: Will she have him killed immediately after the election, or wait until February?

C'mon, if you're old enough to remember Vince Foster, you thought it, too.

Meanwhile, Obama's speech tonight was disgusting.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Maybe I'll move to Italy with Susan Sarandon

They threw out all the Communists in their last election...

The House has approved and the Senate presently will consider legislation to provide federal insurance for $300 billion in refinanced home loans. Taxpayers will have to shell out hard cash if borrowers default on this government-guaranteed debt. This new program is expected to cover just 500,000 to 1 million homes. Thus, these taxpayer-insured mortgages would average $300,000 to $600,000. This is not exactly low-income housing.

. . .

Congress’s lavish scheme is a particularly shabby deal for renters. While politicians routinely ignore apartment-dwellers and other renters, people like us inhabit 34.7 percent of America’s 108 million households, according to the National Apartment Association. More than one third of U.S. homes are rented, yet rent payments are not tax-deductible, as are mortgages. Where is the social justice in that?

This massive bailout will suck tax money out of renters’ bank accounts and swallow savings that some are salting away for home purchases. If this plan achieves its purpose, residential prices will rise again, pushing the American Dream of home ownership back above many a renter’s reach.

Fuck you very much!

I don't mind lack of tax deductions for rent as much as I mind paying for other people (and the huge payouts to La Raza in this bill make me wonder about just who these people are...) to live large beyond their means while I live in a couple of shabby rooms in a newly crime-ridden neighborhood waiting for my credit score to improve.

If you know the government is going to pay your mortgage to keep you in your home, why bother to make a single payment? Why am I not posting this from a Colonial with a three-car garage in Cedarburg??

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Part III: Salzburg

(Note to self: learn some European history.)

Images of Salzburg include doors, the Dom, Mozart's birth house, and the Salzbach river. Also note the Pieta, which is an empty bronze shroud and caused some controversy when installed.

Food was excellent. Sunday night for dinner I had Wienerschnitzel mit Preiselbeeren, which was translated as "cranberries" but were smaller, softer, and sweeter than the Wisconsin variety. Zipfer beer. Also a Mozart ball, which is a truffle with pistachio and marzipan.

Monday's lunch was a "farmer's salad" of greens, bacon, sheep cheese, and vegetables.

I have the photographs taken at the fortress (Festung) overlooking Salzburg in a separate set.

Andrae-Kohler State Park

Nice day today. Entirely too much sun, but not too hot.

This is the first time in two years I've been there when the nature center was open. It's a nice collection of dead animals; the impressive part was the volunteer defined gregariousness. Talked to everyone who came in about everything in the room, especially the kids. Most of the time at these things the volunteers hide behind a desk and give me a hairy eyeball.