Friday, April 30, 2010

"Drill baby, drill."

Remember that obnoxious republican campaign mantra? I wonder if they can feel it biting them in the ass yet?

Watching the coverage of this is making me sick. It's just horrific to think of the destruction this spill is going to bring to the gulf coast and its wildlife.

At least President Obama has put on hold any plans to open up more offshore drilling. I have to give him credit for that, even though the decision was probably the biggest no-brainer of all time. I didn't agree with his decision to open up more drilling in the first place, so maybe this will show him that doing so would be heading in the wrong direction and he'll put it on hold, indefinitely.

I admit, I may lean toward the conservative side of the aisle when it comes to certain aspects of the economy and national security, but never where the environment is concerned. I may not be convinced that all the global warming hysteria is founded, but this environmental disaster is happening right here, right now and it's because of our dependence on oil. If this, and the recent mining tragedies, aren't an argument for investing in alternative energy, particularly wind and solar, I don't know what is.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

This made me smile

PORTLAND, Maine— A former teacher who founded the Dead Poets Society of America and traveled 15,000 miles to document the graves of poets has a new mission to create a Dead Poets Remembrance Day on Oct. 7, the date master of the macabre Edgar Allan Poe died.

Amateur poet Walter Skold of Freeport launched his new endeavor Friday, beginning a 22-state tour of the graves of fallen bards. He's enlisted 13 current and former state poets laureate to help drum up support.

His "Dead Poets Grand Tour 2010" kicks off on what's believed to be the anniversary of William Shakespeare's birth in 1564 with a poetry reading at Portland's Eastern Cemetery, the burial place of British and American sea captains cited in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's poem "My Lost Youth."

"Of course, it takes a little chutzpah to say we're starting a holiday," said Skold, who left his job as a public school technology teacher to pursue his passions of poetry and photography. "But we believe it's a really good idea, and we hope it catches on nationwide."

As in last year's tour, Skold will drive a boxy cargo van, dubbed the Poemobile, to graveyards. But this year, the 49-year-old Skold will be accompanied by a couple from Georgia who will film the journey for a documentary they hope to make.

Having learned from past mistakes, Skold sought permission from cemeteries ahead of time so there's no suspicion about satanic rituals or disrespectful behavior.

The idea of a day of remembrance was inspired by Skold's discovery that the nation's literary forebears have been neglected. Communities have readings at the graves of Poe, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Anne Sexton and other famous poets, but many others are in danger of being forgotten, he said.

Wisconsin's poet laureate, Marilyn L. Taylor, said Dead Poets Remembrance Day is a wonderful idea.

"There's all kinds of commemorative dates for things like National Potato Week or something like that," she said. "And I think it's time that the poets got some recognition."

Tennessee's poet laureate, Margaret Vaughn, noted that April is National Poetry Month. She said it would be nice to have a day set aside to honor poets, as well.

"When people write speeches, it's poets that they quote most of the time," she said. "I think to take one day to really recognize them would be great."

Since founding the Dead Poets Society of America in 2008, Skold and others have documented the final resting places of hundreds of poets. All told, he has a list of the graves of more than 600 American poets.

To drum up interest in documenting poets' graves, a photo and video contest will offer $4,000 in prize money, said Skold, whose society's name was partly inspired by the 1989 Robin Williams movie "Dead Poets Society," about an unconventional English teacher who inspires his boarding school students to love poetry.

For the trip, Skold has printed T-shirts with a rock tour-style list of stops, including Abraham Lincoln's tomb in Springfield, Ill., the Poe Museum in Richmond, Va., and the Swan Point Cemetery in Providence, R.I., where Poe courted poet Sarah Helen Whitman. The farthest west he'll go is Iowa City, Iowa. Eventually, he hopes his travels reach West Coast cities.

Skold insists the graveyard events are about history and celebrating the lives of the poets, but he's not above a little graveyard humor. The society's motto is: "We Dig Dead Poets ... You Dig?"

Modern poets dig the attention he's generating.

"Dead or alive," Taylor said, "I think that Walter is seeing to it that we gain a little higher profile through this and also give our sincere respects to these people who have gone before us and on whose shoulders we're all standing as we write our 20th- and 21st-century poems."

Friday, April 23, 2010

The Daily Rant

This is one of those things that annoys me enough to post about.

So help me god, if I see one more person scoop up their little yappy dog and cling to it for dear life when I walk by with Gunner, I'm going to scream. I'm sick to death of having to say "He's friendly." or "Don't worry about him - he won't bother you." It's ridiculous. There are so many other big dogs here who are completely untrained and out-of-control; barking and growling at other dogs, pulling their owners all over the damned place. But these are Labs, Boxers, Puggles, etc., so no one thinks anything of it. They see a well-trained, well-mannerd German Shepherd coming their way and they act as if they're in fear for their very lives. Idiots.

It's all I can do not to say something along the lines of, "Yes, good idea. Scoop up that little squeaky toy because my dog would love nothing more than to eat it." If I didn't think they'd run right up to the management office and report that I have a vicious dog, I would.

It's bad enough when the owners of these other big, untrained dogs avoid us. But when these women practically go into a panic, scoop up their Toy Whatever-It's-Supposed-To-Be (all wearing little outfits, by the way) and I hear them cooing things like "Mommy's little baby..." I want to vomit. Then I feel bad for the little dog because it has to live with such a moron and probably doesn't have much of a life.

I suppose that's one of the trade-offs of living in a complex like this, in the center of Yuppieville.
~End Rant~

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Some photos of the new place

This is a shot of the kitchen that I very much love. I thought it would take some time, getting used to a much smaller kitchen than we had at the old house, but I love it! It's much more efficient.

This is our view. (Took this one from the living room.) Just beyond those two trees in the foreground is a deep ravine and a big creek.

Living room. (Taken from the kitchen.) I love that it's open and I can see the TV and talk to mom while I'm cooking.

This is one of our pool, taken last year. (It's not open yet this year. Can't wait till it is!)

A shot of the creek that winds through the property. There are walking trails all through the area, too.

Mom has the camera out. That can only mean one thing: Time for a wrestling match! (lol)

No photos of the bedrooms or bathrooms. We don't have them "done" quite to our liking, yet. I'm waiting for some new bedroom furniture to be delivered for my room and mom's bathroom needs some serious decorating help. We're planning to take our time and find things that we really like, so we're not wanting to re-do everything again, six months from now!

Deni, in the 21st Century

Okay, so it seems like everyone in the world, with the exception of yours truly, has a bliggety-blog, or a facey spacy, or a tweetie page. (My apologies to Dennis Leary for borrowing his humor, there.)

So here it is: My very own blog. Don't get too excited. You won't read anything deep or profound here. (Well, on occasion you might.) Mostly it will be mundane, day-to-day stuff, more photos of my boys than anyone really cares to see and things that either interest, amuse or annoy me enough to post about.
This blog is still under construction and probably will be for some time, so bear with me when it comes to layout and things of that nature.