November Untranslatable Rambling

I lead with some heavy stuff; it gets lighter after the pic.

Read the sad tale of Bill Mantlo, former comic book writer and attorney, until a hit-and-run accident wrecked his life. Mark Evanier, linking to the article, writes: “Those who still fear government ‘death panels’ should take note of the portions of Mantlo’s story where his private insurer keeps trying to cut off all payments to him because, after all, their primary duty is to their stockholders.” Here’s the direct link to the article, and here’s Evanier’s correction to the article about the comic book process, which does not negate the insane way Mantlo has been warehoused.

But for sheer devastation, few things I’ve read actually made me weep like Jaquandor’s recollection of a particular day.

Joe Paterno and Jerry Sandusky’s Next Coaching Gig
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George Harrison: 10 Years Gone

Unless I am misremembering, the first TIME magazine cover after September 11, 2001 that was not about 9/11 or the subsequent war in Afghanistan was the one announcing the death of George Harrison. I was sad that George died, of course, but I knew he was sick and not likely to get better. The top cover was the US version; the bottom one, the UK take.

This is obvious, I imagine, but one deals differently when someone dies expectedly or unexpectedly, by disease or by murder. John Lennon’s death a couple decades earlier was a jolt; George’s was just sad.

In fact, George’s passing made me melancholy the more I thought about his contribution to the world Continue reading

T is for Tipos Typos

In one of my favorite websites, Regret the Error, there is a lengthy column about how copy editing errors take place, in this case, the Washington Post, and what to do about it. One quote from the Post: “Mistakes occur more frequently online than in print, generally, because online copy goes through fewer editors…But online errors are easier and faster to correct.”

I am a rather good speller. I remember that I was so proud to get 100 in my 5th grade spelling final. Though I was no good at spelling bees; I need to write it down in order to ascertain that it looks wrong. But spellcheck has made me lazy. Add to that the fact that I’m a lousy typist and one will discover typos in this blog. Continue reading

MOVIE REVIEW: The Muppets

With all the big, Oscar-bait movies coming out in the fall, what is the one movie I wanted to see most of all this week? If you’ve read the title of this piece, you already know. I think it’s in no small part to a very clever campaign of faux trailers online – Green with Envy is still my favorite – that kept up the interest, and bringing the Muppets back in the limelight.

The movie is about two big Muppet fans, Walter, and his brother Gary (Jason Segal). They and Gary’s long-time girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams) take a trip to Los Angeles and discover, though, that lots of people HAVE forgotten Kermit the Frog and his cohorts. Worse, there is an unfortunate contractual provision which will make things worse.
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The Lydster, Part 92: Homework

When Lydia had homework in first grade, it was manageable. She would get a packet of eight sheets on Monday, and they were due on Friday. It became easy to pace the work. If Lydia had something going on one night, we could work around it.

But in second grade, she gets homework each of the first four weeknights of the week, PLUS a weekly spelling assignment. Monday night in particular, is a real pain. Continue reading

Human Metrics QUESTION


One of my sisters sent me a link to this website www.humanmetrics.com, which has a series of Human Metrics tests. For instance:

Carl Jung classified people using three criteria:
Extraversion – Introversion
Sensing – Intuition
Thinking – Feeling
Isabel Briggs Myers added a fourth criterion, Judging-Perceiving.
The first letters of the different combinations of the four criteria denote a type formula. For example:
ISTJ – Introvert Sensing Thinking Judging
Upon completing Jung Typology Test you will obtain your type formula, strengths of the preferences and the type description. It may help you to identify your life style in general and with respect to the specific areas of activity. You will also obtain the list of the most suitable career choices based on your personality, along with some educational institutions where you can receive a relevant degree or a training.

Well, I’ve taken these tests before, but I gave it another shot.

Your Type is Continue reading

Thanksgiving 2011

I think Thanksgiving is my happiest and saddest holiday. I have spent it, dumped at the last minute, home eating Chinese food and watching football, alone. I have spent it with 20+ people, only two of whom I knew before that day. I’ve gathered with a handful of other “orphans”. I’ve hosted family meals. But I haven’t celebrated it with my birth family since 1972.

I have no Thanksgiving tradition. Continue reading

Altruism? Bah!

I went to a party last month, and the hostess and I were kvetching about the pain of home ownership. She will be getting her bathroom redone and would be without bath or shower for some unclear period of time. Meanwhile, her next-door neighbor, who is a friend, has TWO bathrooms. “How,” she mused, “can I get my neighbor to invite me over to shower?” She thought that maybe she should be particularly nice.

I joked that she had to appeal to the neighbor’s enlightened self-interest. Continue reading

S is for Sesame Street

Back in the early 1970s, I used to watch Sesame Street. I don’t think I really have to explain Sesame Street, do I? It’s this kids’ show started in 1969, broadcast on public television in the United States, ostensibly to educate children, with the extensive use of puppets, or, specifically, Muppet characters designed by the late Jim Henson. The program has spread to a couple dozens of countries, in a number of languages.

The “trouble” was that I didn’t have any children to give me cover; I just liked watching it, even though I was in my early twenties. I wished that there was a show so cool when I was growing up. and I liked the songs, such as Rubber Duckie, and, naturally, Bein’ Green. I even own the 10th anniversary album from 1979, though I had pretty much stopped watching by then.

Skip ahead a few decades Continue reading

Of Anger, Polyester and other things

This is a combination of two Sunday Stealing posts from here and here, but I decided to answer only the questions I felt like answering. Besides, I don’t HAVE a favorite mall store.

1. What has been your longest love relationship?

Actually, my current one. We started going out -again – in late 1998. And I’m not even counting the 1.5 years we went out earlier in the 1990s.

4. If you could live anywhere would you live?

I seem to be fine where I am. I fantasize that Madison, WI or Portland, OR might be a mecca for me, and I did like Madison the one time I was there in 1987 or 1988, but I’m unmotivated to change at this time.

7. What’s the longest job that you’ve had?

That would be the current one, where I started October 19, 1992, three work addresses ago. Second longest was FantaCo (8.5 years). Third place was 13 months.

8. If you won the lottery, who’d you call first?

My wife.

9. If you won, how would you spend your money after investments?
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