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Pretty sure I know what’s emptying the bird feeders

March 23, 2015

Now that I am commenting on blogs written by people I know through Being a Professor, I figure I should post here now and again. I’m sitting at my dining table, listening to the music I will be performing in April with the Arts Chorale of Winchester at the end of April. My seat gives me an excellent view of the bird feeders, which are at the moment plagued by starlings and grackles. Pictures to come.

A political note to the people I know

November 4, 2012

I posted this to my facebook page, and am counting it as a NaBloPoMo post. Most of those are on other blogs, but this one is tied to the real me, so here it is:

As the election gets nearer, and I note that more than a few people that I’ve filtered out of my political posts have nevertheless allowed me to see theirs, I am going to post this message:

Friends, I absolutely support your rights to vote as you think fit. That’s at the heart of our democracy. But also at the heart of our democracy is the idea of being a responsible and informed citizen. At the heart of our democracy is voting to support the rights enumerated in the Constitution, and the ideas on which they are based. Understanding the historical events that caused the founders to make their decisions, understanding the context of their times, and understanding the values of our own times is vital to being an informed voter. For example, the people who wrote and enacted the Constitution had a different definition of ‘equality’ than we do today; I don’t think any of us would agree that women or people who are not of 100% European heritage should not be allowed to vote, but they didn’t in 1789! So in addition to being informed, be honest with yourself: if you are reading this, you might always not have been entitled to all of the things you have today.

This is especially true for the women reading this. The things you take for granted, like:

* access to education (especially higher ed)

* the ability to make your own medical choices, including whether or not you are using some form of birth control (when I was born, b/c was not available in many states to unmarried women or to married women without their husband’s permission)

* the ability to work at pretty much any job you can handle physically

* the ability to keep a child conceived and/or born out of wedlock without being seen as ‘ruined’

*the ability to apply for a divorce on grounds other than infidelity — including the right to leave an abusive marriage

*the ability to own or sell property, or run a business, without a male relative’s permission

are only available to you today because we have allowed the Constitution to reflect social change. So again, be honest with yourself: will your vote deny to someone else an opportunity that you might not have had 50 or 100 years ago? What makes it all right for you to benefit and then deny someone else?

And speaking of honesty…

Yes, this is a horribly dishonest time in our political history. None of the candidates are blameless. But again, be honest, and be informed. Think about splinters and planks, and don’t claim to be voting one way or the other because of things that may not be true. For the record, here is what Politifact’s numbers say:

Overall, this is the breakdown of truthfulness for the candidates for President —


Romney 15% vs Obama 22%
Ryan 9% vs Biden 19%


Romney 16% vs Obama 23%
Ryan 18% vs Biden 22%


Romney 28% vs Obama 27%
Ryan 21% vs Biden 27%


Romney 16% vs Obama 11%
Ryan 36% vs Biden 16%


Romney 16% vs Obama 14%
Ryan 9% vs Biden 13%*


Romney 9% vs Obama 2%
Ryan 6% vs Biden 5%

If we leave out the HALF TRUE category, which is pretty much a wash (it’s a narrow Dem lead), it’s abundantly clear that what the Democratic party candidates have said has been consistently closer to the truth. If you don’t agree with the policies, then you shouldn’t vote for them. But I am really tired of people saying they are voting for or against policies and programs because they believe and repeat things that have little basis in truth. If you can honestly say that you are voting for a candidate because his *actual, factual policies* are most in your interests and your belief in the direction the country should take, then we may or may not disagree. But I am THOROUGHLY SICK AND TIRED of people telling me that they are strong supporters of values similar to mine, but nevertheless are voting against the evidence.

Soooo behind.

September 17, 2011
tags: ,

Marking. Writing group deadline. Prep. House that looks like it got hit by a tornado. And unpleasant medical test/procedure Wednesday.

Remember — high fiber diet, plenty of liquids, and exercise are important!

Aha! And now, the students may see me!

September 9, 2011

So I’m starting a blog for my students here on WP, and this means they know all about this not-so-sekrit identity. Huzzah for a semi-public blog presence. This also means I may have to blog here more often, which is likely a good thing, as this blog connects to family and friend blogs. So, hi to my students, and you may see me here.

I hate the week after break

March 16, 2011

It always feels like there’s even more to do than there should be, and no one wants to work. Or none of the tired faculty. Students seem refreshed.

It may not be a GCP, but it *is* the OBX

March 12, 2011

So while some of my colleagues and students are off to Amazing!Places with our uni’s Global Citizenship Project trips, three of us decided to go to the beach. For somebody from the Left Coast, the Outer Banks might as well be a foreign country in some ways. On the way down, A reminded me that people still smoke here — in restaurants, too. Not surprising, considering that King Tobacco is still royalty. The weather has been cold, but for me, a beach is a beach — at UCSB, we’d sit on the beach and study even when it was down in the 50s, so yesterday, when it was in the high 50s, it seemed perfect.

Look! next stop, Africa!

Sand! Dunes! Not like at home, but still …


March 7, 2011

you might be a teabagger if...

Have you ever wondered why “tea bagger” is an insult, yet “tea bagging” as an insult is entirely contextual? Although it is still weird to have it happen to my avatar when she dies in the fashion of a clumsy n00b because someone took BR and made her use the stupid needler. There are many unexplored ideas of gender assumption and construction there. Does the color of one’s body armor signify gender? Or are all Halo warriors male by nature, even when women are playing? Is there a difference to how gender plays out in MMORPGs?

Should I teach a class on gender and video gaming?

Spring Break?

March 7, 2011
tags: , ,

Argh. And again, I haven’t posted in forever. But now that I am commenting on other people’s blogs, I suppose I need to post, too. HA!
And also, HA!
Spring Break so far has been:

One evening of very good Belgian ale with two colleagues discussing the current batch of GCP trips and why I would or wouldn’t like to be on them: Paraguay — would be ok; Sweden — totally cool and fun, and has the advantage of not being too many time zones; Ethiopia — dude, it’s on the Horn of Africa, so kinda too far away, otoh, at least it’s with someone who knows the place, but did I mention it’s too many time zones?; Bahamas — not interested unless there’s a cricket match involved; Australia — would love to go some day, but again, way too many time zones to cross. Oz has the added temptation of being the right place to catch The Waifs on tour, but even that seems a poor payoff for the jet lag that would be involved. That, and honestly, if I were to travel that far, I’d try to fit in a trip to the Outback, a visit with a sf-writer friend and a couple of fen-friends in Melbourne and Canberra, and maybe time over to NZ to see old ex-pat friends in Christchurch (currently cleaning up post-earthquake).

What I really want is a trip to a place that has Roman or barbarian ruins and stuff (Spain would have those plus Muslim things — I could get behind that, ETA or no). Or maybe Aztec, Mayan, or Inca ruins. I could manage a week of ruins and football.

According to my friend who knows about these things (and agrees that this year’s Gouden Carolus Cuvée Van de Keizer Blauw was especially nice), I should be thinking about a GEL trip. Hmmm. möglicherweise…

Break has also been about grading and about taxes and about using one to procrastinate over the other.

Meanwhile, the misogynist Tea Party wars still rage on.

What? I haven’t posted since April??

November 9, 2010

Clearly, I need to post more. Because I don’t spend enough time on line already. But just in case the family decides to show up, here’s what I did today — found out that grand-niece Autumn has a blog! Went to my therapist — a new thing. She kept asking me if maybe I was feeling overwhelmed because I’m actually busy, rather than simply being a big failure at keeping up with things. She also asked if I thought I was hard on myself. Um. Is that a trick question?

Gaaaah. Conservatives in Power

May 7, 2010

Apparently people believed that the Tories would be better. What. The. Hell.