Friday, September 30, 2005

These Dreams

I want to live by the sea, to wake up to the scent of sea water that permeates the air. I want to sit on the beach and watch the sun go down, the stars shining on an endless expanse of night and gently rolling water. To feel the sand between my toes as I walk, hearing only the waves as they crash on the shore and know that until the hurricane hits, this peace will remain.

And I want to see history. I want to walk through the streets of Europe, surrounded by people yet alone with my thoughts, knowing that this soil was trod by countless others for centuries before me. Know that many mistakes were made here, yes, and maybe still are. But I have known some of Europe's people, and I want to soak it all in, soak in the places and events that happened not so many years ago. And maybe discover that despite of and because of its culture, we will always have so much to learn.

And maybe most of all- I want my words to be heard. If we let them, words can heal, words can make a difference. I want what I say to reach out to those who are hurting, who have lost their way, for them to know they aren't the only ones there. Ambitious, I know, but I believe I'll make it. Cause we can all do so much more with our own words if we only know we aren't alone.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005


"Oh, it's nice to see you again!" Frantically racks brain. DeMint? Wilson? Victory 2004? South Carolina Republicans? Oh forget it I worked way too many campaigns last year..."Uh-huh, yeah!" Sorry, Sandra. I have no idea who you are beyond a current Campbell supporter.

Lindsay, though, I probably stood on the opposite lines of pickets several times. "When I was working for Beasley..." Of course now that DeMint is elected we're all friends again and all that. No, really, I mean it. Cause if we weren't I couldn't work with half the people I do. Just like it'll be when Mike Campbell wins and all the cocky Andre people come over to us.

I make it sound like it's this big bloodbath, Republicans versus Republicans preparing for the even bigger bloodbath of party versus party. But you've gotta have levity in there somewhere, usually at other peoples' expenses. After all, making the same blah-blah-blah invite phone call gets boring. Until you get the really enthusiastic, bored-woman-in-bed-with-vertigo, "Running against Andre Bauer??" "Yes, ma'am, and if you'll hang on a sec I'll get someone to tell you more about you can help." So I then make J.K. deal with "Crazy Woman" and laugh at him as I check my blogs.

I probably laugh too much, though, and definitely talk too fast. I know what I'm saying, as it's the same thing over and over, so I expect everyone else to know it too. Blah-blah- oh-ho, a live person, yes thank you Mr. Bullwinkel- blah blah blah... "Why are you laughing? I'm the one who had to call Pooser." "Maybe the machine didn't record that." "Don't call that one back, we'll redo it in the morning..."

Monday, September 26, 2005

Word Check

I'm a lousy typer, always have been. When they taught us in elementary school I was always the one that when I finished typing the letters on the lily pad the frog would jump up and say, "Yay! You have 28 words per minute!" while everyone else's frogs were chiming fifty and sixty and seventy. I'm guessing it has something to do with my hand-eye coordination problem. Namely I don't have any. I type every day now though, either blogging, or personal writing, as my handwriting is also so lousy sometimes I can't read it. You'd think my typing speed and accuracy would have improved.

But I still end up with sentences like, "We''e all seen teh devastiion wrought by KAtrina, called the worst naturzl diosaster to ever hit teh U.S.". I still look at my fingers, and I have no idea what my wpm is but it's probably not much better. It's irritating because I consider myself reasonably computer proficient, enough to do most of what I want to do anyway, but also something of a perfectionist at that. It drives me nuts to see comments with typos that I've made and can't fix. I know how to spell, the problem is just getting that knowledge down to my fingers. Maybe I need to get better fingers.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Fun Experiments

Do you cut your legs more using a regular razor versus a disposable one? The disposable doesn't have the wires, but maybe that makes you more careful. I can see lots of variables in this.

How long would it take to go insane watching nothing but a steady diet of informercials- "And for just $14.95, you, too can have the body you've always wanted...." "No. NOOOOOOOO!"

Learning how a simple box of detergent can become a deadly weapon. There's a reason they say wearing contacts plus getting a foreign substance in your eyes is a recipe for disaster. Trust me on this one.

How do they know the dog food really tastes good? Is there any testing that goes on, or do we have to take their word for it?

Parades- a military turns civilian experiment gone very, very wrong. Why on earth is it fun to sit on a sweltering road and watch a bunch of dancing idiots go by with a few sparring candidates thrown in? Better, why do I keep doing it to myself?

But then there's the Austin Blog, and that really is fun.

Fünf Monate

*Originally Austin Has A Blog*

I turn five months old today. I'm not sure why this is supposed to be significant. I'm supposed to have discovered my feet by now, which I have. I think my toes are fun and I like to put them in my mouth. And indeed I am a natural early riser, as seen by the frog story.

Apparently all the big milestones come at six months. I'm supposed to start being fun at six months. But I think I'm fun already. I can eat oatmeal, and cereal, and I like squash. Unlike my parents I actually like my vegetables. Maybe there's hope I'll be a normal kid yet.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Two-Second News Reactions

Mexico upset church takes drug money donations. It's against the Catholic church's policy? Well, duh!

Silicone breast implants OK'd. You think when someone has hers taken out, her chest still looks like it did before she had them? Does it change permanently, or do they just deflate back the way they were?

Sixteenth anniversary of Hurricane Hugo. You aren't a true South Carolinian if you don't have a Hugo story.

Yogurt cup activity fun. And I need to get a life? I mean, yogurt cups?

Rita will put gas above $3 again. They say the prices "should be back to $2.50 by November or December." Well, merry Christmas to you then.

Strippers return to New Orleans. That'll boost the volunteers' spirits! In fact, I could see an increase in men signing up to work certain sections of the French Quarter...

And as a special bonus, kids, I'll throw in a moral: Don't speed.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Hey, I'm Having Fun

Hmmm, shall I show you what I did today? Or should I be cruel like Darlene and drag it out? It's not that dramatic, really. But there are lots of other things I could talk about. I could talk about how I got lost on the way there, since they have half the streets blocked off downtown. But more because I halfway forgot how to get there and which street you had to park from and hair guy Keith had to call and guide me in like a homing pigeon. Or the particularly humiliating story of how I flipped a particular U-turn and then noticed the cop coming up the street behind me. After that I saw cops every street I went on; I swear it was the same one following me. Probably laughing at me.

Or I could talk about my day at work. I thought I was going to be late but I wasn't really. I am so proud of Limited Brands, they've instituted a matching program for employees to donate for the hurricane relief. My colleagues kept talking to me for a little bit and then double-taking, "Did you dye your hair?" Plus Tammy told me at the end of my four hours manhandling boxes that I did a "Good job today, Nettie, a great job."

Are you still reading this? I'm very good at talking about nothing. Everyone tells me I never shut up. Maybe you should just scroll down and look at the picture. But then, maybe there isn't one. Maybe it is just a cruel joke and I'm making you hunt for it. Why do you want to see my hair, anyway? It's subtle. It's not blaringly red, it just looks darker until you catch the right light. And I just got a little off, really. It had grown, obviously, but it's just above my shoulders now. If I describe it enough, will that satisfy you? OK, OK, I know it won't. You're going, "Shut up, Nettie, and show us the picture already." I am getting tired of writing like this; I feel like I'm slipping into Austin's voice. So here you go. Now tell me how cute I am.

Monday, September 19, 2005

It's John Sununu

Don't feel bad, I didn't know who he was either until I made fifty million phone calls inviting people to RSVP for the reception he had with my candidate Mike Campbell. I don't know why I like to go to these things- even though they're free for me, the food's never that great and I'm not really a mingler. But hey, I get to meet famous-y people- I got a picture with Governor Sununu, but I look really horrible and I am not putting it up. How bout some pictures of pretty things instead?

For those of you who haven't figured out from your Site Meters where I live yet- this isn't it. We were in historic Charleston, first capital of the state, where the first shots of the Civil War were fired, and all that. I had a hard time framing this pink building, but the mist was just right at that moment.

I was wandering around for a good hour before the function officially started, looking at stuff. That's Fort Sumter off in the distance.

After the speeches, my friends and I were exploring the huge old house. I wish we'd discovered the roof earlier, with more light, cause the pictures don't do the view justice. It was amazing up there.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Super Wal-Mart Man

"We're sorry, you have activated Wal-Mart's inventory control system. Please step back, and an associate will help you. Thank you." But as the guy with the stereo under his arm continues towards the outer doors and freedom, to the rescue comes our hero- a white-haired man with a Wal-Mart vest. Power-walking from his place by the carts, "I am Super Wal-Mart Man! I am going to catch you, you evil young blond-headed shoplifter person! Only, could you slow down a little first?" Stereo guy disappears into the night, as Super Wal-Mart Man waddles dejectedly back into the store and is comforted by his vested sidekick, Tiny Green Man. "It's OK, Super Wal-Mart Man, you'll get him next time..."

Tiny Green Man hates the boring night shift. So he reaches into his tiny green brain for a vestige of creativity..."What the hey! How did twelve birthday cards get lined up in chronological order in the ice cream aisle?" Tiny Green Man giggles madly to himself until Super Wal-Mart Man discovers him and thunders, "Stop messing with the customers' heads and get back to the lair!"

"All right, T.G.M., you know the drill. You stand there and check out items realllly slowly so I can come up to all the pretty girls standing in line and say, My register's open! I'll be their HERO!" Ever the sycophant, Tiny Green Man complies. He adores Super Wal-Mart Man. For he believes, with all his tiny green heart, that Super Wal-Mart Man will one day rule the world...

Friday, September 16, 2005

How Short Can This Post Be

Rather than subjecting you to my intensely cranky mood. And if you wonder why, it's called slam-dropping a box of Wallflowers on my bad knee. Thus ending up with, as my PT Karen put it, "Yeah, it is kinda swollen, probably got a contusion." Or according to the assistant Amber, "You don't look so hot, you know." Yeah, thanks. But luckily Melissa emailed me Austin pictures today, so you have something happy to look at. Cheers.

Tell Me How Cute I Am

Auntie Nettie says that if she had taken this picture, I wouldn't have red-eye...

Belle likes to chill on the couch like this too, until Mommy catches her.

Can we invest in some sunglasses for my gorgeous blue eyes please?

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Let's Get Shallow

I'm stealing from everybody these days, but since Darlene does it so well... who thinks I should get highlights? No, really, I mean it. I already went with the drastic change in March when I cut off two years' worth of hair. It's grown out a bit by now, obviously, and I like the length it is, about at my shoulders. I need better pictures, after I've spent an hour blowing it out, but it'd be stupid to get them just so I could put them on the Internet. After all, everyone else knows what I look like.

The layers are driving me crazy, though, because the front pieces aren't long enough to make it into the ponytail, I have to do two when I'm at PT or something. Which only serves to make me look even more like a twelve-year-old. So the long-range plan is to get it cut off to one length, and then maintain it as is, maybe a little longer.

That's a few months off though, since I want to give the front time to be long enough for a ponytail. I'm notorious for taking forever to make decisions about my hair (trust me, the one spur-of-the-moment haircut I ever got was not a pretty picture). And after all, if you're going to take two years to grow your hair for Locks of Love- twice- you have to be patient. So let the discussion begin. As I said, I'm a chicken. I've never done anything more than a semipermanent, although I did look good as a redhead for a month. I don't want a perm, but other than that- red? blond? Ideas to add life to my what-color-is-this-hair?

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

It'll Make You Happy

A cute baby blog always makes you happy, right? Since I loved Paula's and Darlene's progenys' blogs so much, and my only child is inanimate, I decided that Austin needed his very own blog. So what if he's not even five months old yet- he'll get an early start and have a ready-made adoring public. Besides me.

It does have a practical purpose, though. I set a chronology of links to all the Austin posts, and pictures, categorized by actual day taken. And if I have a cute story that absolutely must be shared, up it goes and I can still post about beautiful Neanderthals. I'm not so sure my sister would find this amusing, but hey, who am I kidding? You know it's all cause I love that little guy. And now, with Austin Has A Blog, y'all can share the love!

Jumpin' Jumpin'

*Originally Austin Has A Blog*

I got up early this morning to nurse and afterwards Mommy went to the bathroom. Luckily she looked first because in the toilet there was a pair of eyes looking back at her. She made Daddy get up and "Get that frog!" He seemed to be enjoying himself where he was so Daddy went to the garage and got the barbecue tongs. And Mommy got one of Belle's bowls to put Mr. Froggy in. But when they got back- where was Mister Froggy? Peering out from the part of the toilet where the water goes down. Only he wouldn't flush.

At this point my daddy went back to bed for twenty minutes. But when he got back up he was informed that he was not leaving for work until He Got That Frog. Well, my mommy and daddy went to do battle again with that frog. Mommy got him in the bowl at one point but couldn't clap the paper plate on top fast enough. Mister Froggy jumped on the wall. Finally, they turned the trash can sideways and got him in the plastic bag liner. Poor Mister Froggy was too much trouble and had to go out in the garbage until Monday. Hopefully.

Me and Belle slept through the whole thing. I was in my crib with a full belly and Belle took advantage and napped on the couch. But my mommy had to spend the rest of the morning cleaning up the frog slime.

Monday, September 12, 2005

This Is Beauty

4000 B.C. "Yurgh a booga. Hey wifey, that girl in next cave, she hooooot. She no have hair on legs like woolly mammoth. Why you got hair on legs like woolly mammoth?" "Blegda, you look at hot girl in next cave ONE MORE TIME and you be SLEEPING with wooly mammoths." "But Nagda, see, she take sharp flint and make legs so smooooth." RAWRRRRR!!! Blegda learns to sleep with wooly mammoths.

1590 A.D. "Prithee, Blain, why doest thee body stinketh so bad? Thee shouldst throw thyself in the river." "Pray tell, Naomi, why shouldst I smell like the fishes? "I cannae stand thy smell, so clean up or thou shalt SLEEP with the fishes!"

1870. "Gosh dern it, Nancy, you look so perty when you've been runnin' from all them outlaws. Your cheeks are jest as red as the sun in the west." "No ya dumb Bucky, tain't from all that runnin'. It's a newfangled thing called rouge!" "Well, you just keep at it darlin', you just keep at it, cause I wouldn't trade you for all the gold in California. "Why thank you, Bucky, but you're still SLEEPING with the coyotes tonight!"

1920 A.D. "Aren't my curls pretty, honey?" "Where did you get those curls? Have you been drinking too much bootleg whisky and it made your hair curl?" "Why no, honey, it's the latest thing!" "Woman, you been drinking my whiskey?" "No, I haven't. But if you love your whiskey so much you can just go out to the horse-barn and SLEEP with it!"

1965 A.D. "Get a haircut, John." "Haircuts are for the birds, man. I just let it all hang out and then it's all natural and groovy, man. You dig it?" "Well until you get rid of that stinky mess on top of your head, you can just go SLEEP with those birds you like so much!" "Hey, man, you don't have to persecute me, I'm just doing my thing..."

2005 A.D. Women all over the world are subjected to relentless peddlers, selling and promoting this thing they call beauty, and wonder as they sleep alone what Neanderthal ever came up with this stuff...

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Do You Remember?

Do you remember where you were that day four years ago? I remember. I remember our administrators calling us all into the gym, telling us that a plane had hit one of the towers. And then another plane hit another tower. And we all sat there not comprehending until we knew, knew that America was under attack.

Do you remember what happened that day? I remember we sat in our English teacher's room, lessons forgotten, and watched the towers fall, never taking our eyes off the horror on the screen. I remember girls crying together in the halls. I remember going from room to room, huddle to huddle, praying in small groups and wondering what would the next minute, the next hour bring?

Do you remember the fear? I remember being so scared for my grandparents, mere miles from one of the biggest military bases on the East Coast. They wouldn't care about South Carolina, we would be safe. Unless they hit the Savannah River Site. Or our sleepy little capital. But they wouldn't do that, would they? But nobody knew. Nobody knew where they might go next.

Do you remember the questions? "Will the towers fall?" "Will the President be safe?" "Will they attack again?" "And when they do, where will it be?" "Did they choose 9/11 on purpose, a cruel play on our emergency system?" "How many are dead, and how many more will follow?" "How could this have happened? This wasn't supposed to happen."

Do you remember the patriotism? The flag the seniors painted on the front doors and windows- for Homecoming, that stayed till after Christmas. The outpouring of blood, so much that the Red Cross couldn't use it all. And God Bless America, everywhere God Bless America as people searched for answers.

Do you remember the impact? For everyone, it was personal. They did this to every one of us. Nothing else seemed to matter that day. And for a day, partisanship didn't matter as all of America united in their grief. And we stood strong together, strong in our mission to help the survivors, try to stop the pain, and strong to get those who did this to us. For we are America, and on that day, we were one.

Will you ever forget?

Friday, September 09, 2005

I Admit It

OK, so I spent today talking about personal responsibility with my Republican cronies, that people should be allowed to stay and die if they choose, that most of them could have prepared better. And it's not that I didn't, and don't, mean it. But I'd started crying by the time I was alone and just watching the promos for the "Shelter from the Storm" concert currently playing on seventeen channels.

I've already blogged several times about Katrina. But it's time to make it personal. It's time to admit that all of us, Republican, Democrat, independent, whatever, have been shaken by this. And that it's OK to believe much of it could have been prevented, yet still be heartbroken by the sight of victims who have nothing. It's OK to criticize the officials who could have done better, yes, and yet still be so proud of the American people who are reaching into their pockets in the hopes of making a difference.

So I admit it. I'm having trouble reconciling my heart and my head on this one. As my head screams about screwups, my heart cries that it's breaking. You'll have time to sort out how to feel or what to believe about faults and prevention and responsibility. But think of the children, without homes, some never knowing if they'll see their families again. Pray, give if you can, money or whatever you can spare. And remember this, too: no matter what you believe, it's still okay to cry.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

We're Republican Dorks

October 2002. Somewhere in South Carolina. A moderately politically-minded seventeen year old named Nettie and a bunch of her friends, living life at a small evangelical school when they hear...."The President's coming! The President is freaking coming here! And Mr. Keefer the insanely politically-minded history teacher snagged us the day OFF! Now, we just have to find tickets..." Enter the College Republicans: "Sure, you can have tickets, you just have to volunteer a few hours for the Victory 2002 campaign." We made it through the mishaps and saw en masse the leader of our country. But that was only the beginning.

I got hooked. For the rest of the Republicans-in-SC campaign, I made signs, put up signs, tore down signs, stuffed envelopes, rang doorbells, got on TV three times, and got caught up in the headiness of politics "Oh why Do I have to be too young to vote?!" But the next time around...

Fall 2003. Let the five-way Senate race begin. I had now become a member of those same College Republicans and was volunteering for one of the five, Jim DeMint. Until the five became six, with the late addition of David Beasley, former governor and all-time sleazeball. Cue desertion of College Republicans: "Oh we don't endorse candidates until after the primaries but hey Sleazy why dontcha come speak at our last meeting for the year?" And then the six became two, and the dominoes all fell in favor of Jim DeMint, first and last standing. And somehow all the Beasleyites licked their wounds and we came back together in time for...

Fall 2004. My first presidential election, a Senate race- it's Victory 2004. Let the fun begin again. "Hey, don't you have a Spanish test?" "Who cares, let's go stuff mailboxes in the boonies until midnight!" It's the camaraderie that makes it fun- in the final stretch, we had S.C. people, D.C. people, random Ohio people, all for Bush and DeMint. And the heady night of November second: "It's two A.M., time to call all your Democrat friends and rub it in their faces!" So we were a little premature, but it panned out in the end. The aftermath just reemphasized it.

Late Summer 2005. This time, for me, it's Mike Campbell for Lieutenant Governor, and my old friend Wes from 2002 as campaign manager. Afternoons of the euphemism 'data entry': sitting at computers typing in donor names in databases. "Do you enjoy this stuff?" "I have no life." Or, alternately, sitting and watching Wes tear his hair out rebooting said computers while I scratch my head and wonder, when'd I get that dent?

But it'll all be worth it in the end. This is my game, my passion. I am a fierce competitor, and maybe a little cocky too. But you have to be to win this game. And we will. We will win this race, just as we have won before, and all the blood and tears and sweat will make the victory so sweet.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

We Don't Have to Be Perfect

So what is it that makes us try? Why are we convinced that the world will end if we screw up? It won't. And yet still, we push ourselves to be perfect friends, perfect workers, perfect Christians, perfect, perfect, perfect. And then the downfall, when we inevitably screw things up and prove ourselves decidedly not perfect. Again.

So what? Show me a human who never made a mistake and I'll show you Jesus. The rest of us can never hope to live up to Him. I'm not saying we shouldn't try to be as Christlike as possible. Just ease up a bit. The world will still go around if there's a few typos in your blog or a few stray meals in your car. Easier said than done, I know. But we're only human after all.

And you know what? God still loves us even when we get things wrong. Cause if He didn't, He wouldn't have anyone that He could. Fix your mistakes when you can, but after you've done that, let go of it. What's the point of making yourself miserable, there are so many more fun things you can do with your life!

Monday, September 05, 2005


Your Brain's Pattern

Your mind is a multi dimensional wonderland, with many layers.
You're the type that always has multiple streams of though going.
And you can keep these thoughts going at any time.
You're very likely to be engaged in deep thought - and deep conversation.

Sunday, September 04, 2005


I've said this all over the 'sphere, but I really am impressed by the turnout of bloggers. N.Z. Bear, the ecosystem guy, has been logging contributions by bloggers worldwide through the Labor Day weekend. The current contributions: $763,590 donated to charities by thousands of bloggers, which I'm sure will rise. Corporations: kudos go to Wal-Mart for making it easy; you could donate at any register and several tables that I saw. Other big guys, foreign countries; even my former, insanely secular university sent out a detailed email telling students how they could help and even urging them to pray. Keep up the good work, y'all, and even if it's only five or ten bucks, lots of little dribbles will become a flood.

And as for the fallout? No one would argue that this won't change our country. And the debates on could we have prevented much of the loss, who are we going to blame, are going to continue to rage. But for now, can we please just remember the survivors? The ones who need help that is coming, the ones who lost their homes and their loved ones, the ones who maybe could've done better. But then, couldn't we all have? Remember those that lived, mourn for those that died. And before you start raging against the man, remember that it could have happened to you, too.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Break Your Heart

"I know that it will hurt, I know that it will break your heart, the way things are, and the way they've been. Don't spread the discontent, don't spread the lies, don't make the same mistakes with your own life- you never will let love survive..." Break Your Heart, Natalie Merchant.

You see the looters and the criminals, the evil ones taking advantage of anarchy and desperation. You witness the ones who have lost everything- food, shelter, pets, lives. And you just want to cry at the despair of it all, the wrath that nature has wrought upon a city of millions, killing, wounding, and yet, some survive.

So why are you sitting there doing nothing about it? "I don't have money," you say. Well, I don't either. But I found enough to give to the Red Cross. If it's five dollars or five thousand, every little bit makes a difference. You spend so much on gas anyway, what's a few bucks to help someone else do the same? Is it really so hard to say 'yes' to the cashiers when they say, will you give a dollar to help the victims of Katrina?

Yeah, there are lots of idiots who can't contain their misplaced anger at the President, feds, mayors, whoever they think is responsible. And no doubt there were things that could have been done better. But spewing hatred doesn't help anybody. So get off your righteous horses and do something. Give what cash you can. Find out how you can give of your time, now and later when the agencies have been forced to move on. Spread the word. Most of all- pray, people. Get on your knees, even if that's all you can do. And know that whatever you choose, you are making a difference.

Friday, September 02, 2005

You Know You Watch Too Much TV When...

*You can recite the entire day's lineup on Lifetime (9 A.M. Golden Girls, 9:30 The Nanny, 10 Golden Girls....)

*Not only can you sing the K-9 Advantix song on cue, it has become your "special commercial".

*There are four things that look interesting on at 7...but you've seen them all.

*There is not a single episode of the Golden Girls that you can't recite at least some of the dialogue to.

*You can't sleep without the tube on.

*You are way too amused by the Roaming Gnome.

*You could never buy a car with a TV in it: "But Officer, I wasn't watching it, I was just listening to it."

*You're convinced a set of fairy godparents would solve all your problems.

*You get scared by some of the things you see on those diet pills people...No, no, get out of my head evil Leptoprin woman!

Thursday, September 01, 2005

I Like My Random Thoughts

So the rest of you can just deal with them, eh?

*I made an amazing journey today after physical therapy. And I'm not allowed to go back to the used CD store anymore. But it's just! 6 CD's and a DVD for 30 bucks- about what I paid yesterday for gas. And hopefully I will enjoy it more. But I did manage to resist the Ricky Martin.

*There's a sign at the Food Lion that states pets aren't allowed but service animals are welcome. Well, that's all fine and dandy, but if you're using a Seeing Eye Dog, how are you supposed to find out that they're welcome? Can the dog read?

*Joy Williams is awesome. And no, she wasn't included in the six CD's, that was yesterday's Target trip along with the Beatles Yellow Submarine T-shirt. I need to cheer up soon or else I'll go broke. Although Genesis made for some good listening when I was playing find-the-gas-in-the-gas-station.

*Since there's only one, I usually listen to a certain local CCM station in the car. But the lack of diversity annoys me. They're pretty heavy on Michael W. Smith, Point of Grace, MercyMe- all of whom I love. But never Amy Grant- maybe they think she went too far astray from Christian music. Of all the songs dc Talk has, there's only one or two they play; same with Audio Adrenaline and Switchfoot. I love most of the music, but come on, there's more out there than the white fluff. Even if it doesn't meet the so-many-Jesus-mentions-per-minute quota.

*How I got started volunteering for political candidates: "I got George W. Bush tickets. You got me hooked on this for life. I think you won."