Monthly Archives: July 2012

Fair thee well, sweet childhood…


Last week, Donnie Wahlberg sent out this picture from his Twitter account (@DonnieWalberg). What you see above, from left to right, is Joey McIntyre, Jon Knight, Jordan Knight, Donnie Wahlberg and Danny Wood of New Kids on The Block fame. What you *see* are four shirtless men and one whitey tighty clad dude posing with facial hair in what appears to be a bathroom.

If you are a nearly 30 year old female, you see something quite different flash before you. You see the boys who used to grace your faux graffitied, Andy Warhol knock off sleeping bag you used for sleep overs and girl scout camping trips. The cotton pink liner was itchy and stifling in the summer and woefully inadequate in temperatures below 68 degrees, but it didn’t matter because it had Joey and Jordan on it. (Admit it, even then Donnie looked like the dad of the group.) It represented suburban camping at its finest and I loved it.

My seven year old self would lip sync into hairbrushes with my girlfriends to “Step by Step” and “Hanging Tough.” We played the cassette so much that when the tape popped out we calmly grabbed a pencil and rewound the tangled black mess until it was back inside the plastic casing. God love us for thinking that wearing a bandana tied around our left knee and ball caps cocked to the side made us Boston bad asses. When I heard “Please Don’t Go Girl“, I was pretty certain Joey was singing directly to me. I look at this video now and see a 13 year old boy begging a 28 year chick not to leave him. *shudder* With an over sized NKOTB t-shirt, fashionably tied to the side by a scrunchie, over neon colored bike shorts, I screamed pre-teen devotion to the 5 boys from Boston.

Flashback over, and you’re left with this picture of five men sporting Chester the Molester mustaches of varying thickness. Suddenly, the pink lined sleeping bag and over sized t shirt seem…tainted. It’s not that I don’t realize that childhood crushes age or that we all get a little wrinklier and saggier as time goes on. It’s just that I didn’t want to see these childhood crushes shirtless in a bathroom and looking like the latest suspects about to get tased by Chris Hansen’s crew on “To Catch a Predator.” I’m much happier thinking that Donnie Walhberg is out there breathing life into 2nd Lt. Carwood Lipton or beating the snot out of some punk on the streets of L.A. 

Ah, well, I’ll always have YouTube…


The Long Shadow Over Vice Presidential Politics is a Big, Bald Rat


The thing about them is that unlike dogs, you hardly ever need to give them a bath. They’re pretty good about cleaning themselves, but sometimes a good tongue bath is no match for a bad odor picked up while tromping through the outdoors. Ever try and bathe a cat? There’s something about soap and water that turns the most docile kitty into a buzz saw with fur. It’s a pain to do, but when that little critter has a foul smell clinging to it like a cockle burr on a sock, you just have to don the oven mitts, get a good grip, and plunge that howling, hissing ball of stink right into the water.

And boy, do we have a cat that has rolled in something that stinks to high heaven. The source of the smell appeared on US News’ blog, “The Ballot 2012. ” Author Rebekah Metzler wondered, per Ann Romney’s comments to CBS, whether the eventual GOP nominee would choose a woman to be his running mate. Metzler interviewed Jennifer Lawless, director of American University’s Women and Politics Institute, who squelched the idea claiming:

That’s because the long shadow of Sarah Palin still hangs over vice presidential politics.”

That’s pretty rancid, ma’am. I recall the events of late 2008 quite differently. You see, I did not vote for Sen. John McCain in November. As a candidate, he gave me no reason to. When I walked into the voting booth on election day, I scrolled to the page for Presidential candidates, found his name, covered it with my left thumb and with Sarah Palin’s name in full view, selected her with my right thumb. I never wore a McCain button, never let a McCain sticker grace the bumper of my car, and never listened to one of his speeches until August 29, 2008. Team McCain spent a lot of time and money trying to get people like me to pay attention to them, and the one thing that finally accomplished that goal was introducing to the nation a 5′ 4″ Governor from the state of Alaska. That got my attention. What earned my vote was her political background, her principles and her forceful defense of both. Gov. Sarah Palin was able to demonstrate in a little over 2 months what Team McCain’s expensive strategists were unable to do in 18 months: Give heart and purpose to a campaign.

Unfortunately, that campaign was saddled with the raw stupidity of McCain’s Campaign Manager, Steve Schmidt and his little blonde toady, Nicolle Wallace. What was initial befuddlement quickly advanced to full blown screaming episodes of obscenities at these heretofore unknown strategists who kept this vibrant, knowledgeable and best asset of the campaign locked away while the media and  Team Obama surrogates gladly filled the void Team McCain so foolishly left unprotected. Quite a bit of buck shot flew around in that election, but the one shot that proved fatal to Team McCain was one delivered by their own hand: Suspending its campaign during the 2008 financial crisis. Courtesy of Steve Schmidt. When that financial bomb dropped, Team McCain froze, and allowed an otherwise unqualified junior Senator from Illinois to appear to be the one in control. And in the waning days of this presidential campaign, did we find a campaign manager scrambling for one last play as anyone compelled by duty and honor would do? No, we found a rat desperately seeking dry sanctuary after being the one who chewed through his ship’s rigging.

That is the long shadow which still hangs over the 2008 vice presidential story. It is not cast by a petite Alaskan, but by a big, bald rat. No caption required below.

There’s more scrubbing to be had. Ms. Lawless continues:

Whoever Romney picks, if she’s a woman, would have to first demonstrate how much better than Sarah Palin she actually is.”

That’s a pretty high standard. My political sisters, Stacy Drake and Whitney Pitchercompiled an extensive amount on Gov. Palin that reveals “a record of relentless reform and fiscal leadership that goes beyond “drill, baby, drill” and is more complex than selling an expensive state jet.” It’s a substantive record while in office and since the 2010 mid term elections, it’s become a potent record outside of office. A sample list of her wins in 2010 include:

  • Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin
  • New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez
  • South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley
  • Texas Gov. Rick Perry
  • New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte
  • Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey
  • Kentucky Senator Rand Paul
  • Florida Representative Allen West
  • Washington Representaive Cathy McMorris
  • North Carolina Representative Renee Ellmers
Gov. Palin shows no signs of slowing down for the 2012 Congressional campaigns. Earlier this year, she plunged head first into three different Senate primaries, giving rise to “The Palin Effect,” which Tony Lee described in delicious detail. If we’re talking about shadows, that’s a tough one to be shaded by.
This type of dirt that’s been spread around among the rat nests of D.C. is particularly foul.
It requires constant scrubbing which will bring out some fierce resistance, but that’s what the oven mitts and a vice like grip are for.

I’m Grumpy, Coffee-less, But Damned Happy to Be Employed

Rolled over this morning and cracked open a puffy, rapidly approaching 30, eyelid to see I had awoken 2 minutes before my alarm was set to go off. It’s Friday. Two days after a mid week national holiday. Most of my colleagues are near coastal climates (hopefully getting burned) and the bosses are out of  the office.  They may not come back until September. At least that’s the vibe I get from their automated email responses.

Motivation factor: Low.

There’s no coffee to be had, and given that it’s over the 100 degree mark, I’m not sure a steaming hot beverage is a welcomed thing. I know I’m going to head to the office and pass vehicles with boats of varying sizes being dragged behind them and curse that I’m going in the opposite direction they are.

Mood: Grumpy.

But you know what? I’m damned happy to be employed.

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