Friday, October 28, 2005

Friday Night Wine Blogging - the return edition

Pinot Noir - Mueller 2001
Russian River Valley

You can smell the oak now - Ginger Haired Yank

I can taste the cola - taryl

Truly a fine bottle - taryl

It was all-right. It wasn't as full bodied as the bottle we tasted at the Hollywood was good - Ginger Haired Yank

Thursday, October 20, 2005

9 down - 39 to go

Bush's lame duckism continues to amaze. The best line I've read recently was in today's WSJ in an article concerning Bush's failure at "reforming" Social Security from a GOP Senator - what would it take to restart the Social Security reform effort? "Get our troops out of Iraq and rebuild New Orleans".

What's funny though, is the real 1-2 punch that put Bush down were Hurricane Katrina and his nomination of Miers - certainly items that could never have been predicted when he took office. Personally no strong feelings about Miers, but the conservatives have some fantasy that if they just get one more Supreme Court nominee, then somehow....Roe v. Wade would go away? That Brown v. Board of Education would be repealed? I'm really not sure what conservatives expect beyond some vague belief that all might be right with the world. Still not sure how much of that belief is just GOP manipulation of their core supporters; but you'd think after having the presidency for 7 of the last 10 terms, they'd know that the judiciary just can't go that much farther right. 7 of 9 Supremes are GOP nominees. Read that 2/3 of appellate judges are GOP nominees, so I'm gobsmacked when reading that the left is afraid of losing control of the judicial branch. Sorry guys, but that "control" was & is just a fiction.

Back to metrics:


Thursday, October 13, 2005

Losing interest in the blogosphere

Probably just a sign of the cooled off political climate, but notice that I spend far less time in the blogosphere & have blogged very little myself. Makes sense given that pre-election I was reading 8 a day & have backed way off from there.

Am happily surprised how much the political climate has cooled off since the passions of last fall. Too much noise - too much steam that has now slowly seeped out of the system.

Like all liberals, I'm thoroughly enjoying the implosion of the GOP. I guess Miers nomination must fall in the tipping point category. Now conservatives are accusing Bush of cronyism, while it used to be liberals & the mythical MSM who used to use the term "crony capitalism". Good to see that mainstream USA wants good government not Brownies - no one could argue that he had any business having a position of any responsibility.

Also believe that most Americans don't want the rancor of the election season, do understand that we are all Americans and wanting to succeed from 51% of the nation or wishing that 48% would love the country. Don't care so much about the culture wars or accusation of liberal bias - they just want a healthy country, with a robust economy, and soldiers not dying overseas for some nebulous aims.

Well no Friday Night Wine Blogging tomorrow night, since I'll be rooting on the Angels, but will return to posting after riding the Palm Springs tram.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Ginger Haired Yank examines Muscat clarity

Friday Night Wine Blogging - sideways edition

Blogspot just improved their photo software & I've just downed my first rusty nail of the evening, so viewers will have to excuse the sideways posting.

Oh, Chateau St. Michelle Riesling 2004.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Stop dissin' my Alma Mater

After all the harangues of elitism that i've heard or read or watched from conservatives, after all the put downs of the Ivy League, what chutzpah to be putting down SMU, and implying that Miers isn't fit for SCOTUS because she earned her J.D. from my alma mater.

Just out of curiosity, decided to go through the vitaes of the rest of the court:

Roberts: Harvard; Harvard
Breyer: Stanford & Oxford; Harvard
Ginsburg: Cornell; Columbia
Thomas: College of the Holy Cross; Yale
Souter: Harvard & Oxford; Harvard
Kennedy: Stanford & London; Harvard
Scalia: Georgetown; Harvard
O'Connor: Stanford; Stanford
Stevens: Chicago; Northwestern

Hmmm, 5 from Harvard and 7 from the Ivy League. Guess elitism still rules on the Supreme Court.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Why I don't like Wolfe, James, Wharton, Hawthorne & Proust

After seeing The Hours, I decided to listen to Mrs. Dalloway on tape even though I didn't care for Wolfe's To the lighthouse or orlando. Alas, the book was boring with a bunch of whiners for characters. Still I decided to give the movie a chance since i enjoyed the films The Golden Bowl and The Wings of the Dove - alas once again, as the film was just as unsatisfyingly dull as the book. Bunch of semi-lost characters wondering if maybe they'd made the wrong decisions in their lives.

In the modern age, it's too hard to have any sympathy for victimhood, so when Isabel Archer marries some S.O.B. and then returns to him, when Ethan Frome fails at suicide, when Hester Prynne hangs around ostracized while her ex-husband makes her misery his life devotion, when Proust autobiographical character can't go to bed without a kiss from his mother, there's little beyond pity for the characters. Why should we care Lily Bart makes repeated self-destructive errors? Why shouldn't we scream at Hester & the Reverend to go make a new life for themselves in a different part of the colonies - that's why settlers came to America to make a new life?

Thinking back through the various films & books makes me wonder at these authours' continued reputation. Disliked the novel Ethan Frome, the movie house of mirth & despised the film the age of innocence - the only work by Wharton I could stand was miniseries The Buccaneers and that was largely because the scriptwriters could change the ending of an unfinished novel to deviate from Wharton's typical "tragic" ending.

Guess that I've beaten my point into the ground, so I'll make one more attempt at Proust if I can find the Madeline section, but will eschew the others from now on.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Perfect days these days

These trends don't last, but past few days have been as good as life provides. Serenity & French dinner with friends. Lunch with old workmate of the Ginger Haired Yank. Victory finally in fantasy football, albeit with an incredible nail biter as his kicker scored 20-frickin' points last night to make me nervous. Tonight victory secured while watching the very fine A Long Engagement.

There good times can't last, but are so sweet when lasting even a few days in a row.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Serenity Rocks!

Spoiler alert - don't know how to create a "fold" on a blog so can't hide plot details off-screen.

Guessed that Book would be one of the characters to die - least necessary to the major plot line - but figured that Jayne would be the most likely to get killed given how he wasn't that integral to the crew, so Wash's death did catch me by surprise. Will they pick up a new love interest for Zoe if there's a sequel?

Overall the film totally kicked ass - as did Summer Glau. Oh, final plot spoiler, Kaylee finally has sex with Simon, albeit with his sister voyeuristically looking on.

Really miss having a Joss's program on TV, so here's hoping that Serenity makes enough $$$$ to generate a sequel.

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