Thursday, October 30, 2008


I have this great area of my heart and sympathies which I reserve especially for old people. And when you combine that with people truly believe in their convictions and go forth to fight for them and are lambasted left and right by ...well, everyone, it creates this awful feeling inside me.

This is how I have come to feel immensely sorry for John McCain. He and I would probably never be friends, considering his lack of respect for women, but then again Larry David and I would probably never hit it off because our outlandish, oft-voiced insecurities and odd opinions would never allow it.

Starting back when he conceded to Bush in the primaries of 2004, McCain has morphed into this uber-Republican, only to be forsaken by the GOP. It's almost like they actually have a democrat running the group, and that's why all these terrible decisions and campaign maneuvers are actually happening.

It wouldn't have taken a genius to realize Palin would have been a mere firecracker to ignite the party, it just required some foresight. And despite all of her hot air, she can't keep the enthusiasm of Americans afloat. His campaign has stoked the coals of racism, anti-commie BS, and more of the old classic --- fear among the American people. Things have gotten out of control, and I truly believe this non-politician, whatever personality flaws he may have, is probably ready for it to be over.

Someone as matter of fact and...well...lacking composure as John McCain is not suited for the circus of Political America. And for that...I feel sorry for him.

Not sorry enough to vote for him, of course.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

All Functions in Life Have a Cutoff Point

The other day I went to the Lane County Elections office to give them my updated address, because we vote by mail here (weird, huh?). As I walked in, an older man was rushing into the office and made a beeline for the first attendant.

"I need to register to vote!" He exlaimed.

The calm, burly man behind the counter explained that the last day to register was October 4th, but perhaps he had registered before and could simply update his address.

"No. I've never registered to vote. I need to vote!"

The two went back and forth a bit, and finally I heard the attendant say, "All functions in life have a cut off point."

This statement sent me soaring into my own thoughts, and I didn't hear the wannabe voter's response. First I was struck by the truth that this election is bringing people out of the woodwork. This man had NEVER registered to vote, an idea completely foreign to me. He was at least sixty years old. But something about this election was sending him into a frenzy. He acted like people do in the ER when their child's head is bleeding out, as though this was a matter of life or death.

The election attendant is right. There is a cutoff point, but not just for registering to vote. For all functions in life. This has been a year filled with both exciting new beginnings and very sad, difficult goodbyes. The old cliche is true.. as one door closes, another opens. You can't hang in the rafters forever gazing at a bunch of doors left slightly ajar. It's often hard to identify the cutoff point. When do I say "ok, I'm going to end this now" or "This is the time to start something new." It's a difficult course to chart, but making those definitive decisions is what allows us to change and grow.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

autumn night

Tonight was a great Autumn night. The moon was full, the air was crisp, and the mood was calm.

Friday, October 10, 2008


I just got back from seeing the movie Religulous, directed by Larry Charles (Curb and Seinfeld fans might know him) and starring Bill Maher. This movie was extremely thought provoking. I left feeling a paradoxical combination of discouragement and the need to act.

Without going into too much detail about my own religious beliefs (most of you don't care, and none of you have that kind of time) and how the world should turn according to those beliefs, I can say that this movie adequately highlights my reasons for breaking with organized religion. However, I'm not totally sure I agree with or appreciate the approach.

Bill Maher is the arrogant pessimist visiting high-ranking church, state and media evangelical officials (but wait, aren't those usually one in the same?). He also interviews individuals you might find in your book club, across the cubicle, serving your food, teaching your children, or... sitting in your pew. In each of these encounters, he seeks a soapbox. My parents raised me in a fashion, and I have learned they were right through my own blunders in life, to maintain a certain level of respect when you're on someone else's turf. Not only would you expect the same of them, but in doing so it is easier to participate in a dialogue with as unemotional answers as possible. He throws this caution to the wind as he blatantly tells people there is no proof of their religion, their book was written by ordinary men, and basically the fortress around which they've developed their beliefs and lived their life is actually made of imagination. Now whether or not I agree with this isn't the point. This stance never elicited a proper conversation, it only makes him look like the embodiment of pragmatism. And in the end, he implied that by going to church, temple, or whatever you are contributing to all the evil in the world. This struck me as the same as my belief that people that shop at Wal-Mart are encouraging a damaged economy. So I guess I'm a bit hypocritical in my anger towards him on this subject.

The movie was a serious one. The terrifying truths exposed by his impish questioning of these people were softened with comic reliefs of clips from old films, current videos, and audio clips mocking whatever it was they were discussing. I laughed a LOT in this movie. But I walked away feeling incredibly, incredibly discouraged by humanity.
However, all that aside... I completely agree the movie's overall point. These religions, which purport to be so different, so right and so condemning, are drawing the world in sketches of black and white, while we all know there is a spectrum of color in our lives. Such a division of "us and them" is naturally going to create animosity and the need to correct "them." It's all relative. My experiences are so vastly different from yours. The decisions I make shape my destiny in a different form than yours. But in the end, you and I will both die, and the end doesn't justify the means.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

MFFL....I swear

Let me begin this post by affirming that I AM a Mavs Fan For Life. Dirk is my homeboy, and even when Mavs players leave our team to fight the good fight elsewhere, I still cheer them on. If Finley scores a 3-pointer against us, I still yell "DOOOWWWNNTTOOWWN."

Having said this, I have adopted the TrailBlazers as my team to watch this season. Such a drastic shift in support is due to a combination of circumstances.....and...sheer "entusiasmada" ('ll understand the Spanish in a bit). It is mostly due to the fact that I only get local channels and can only watch local games. Also, my boss gave me 2 tickets to tonight's game against the Golden State Warriors. His season tickets are literally four rows up. It was crazy, and of course I forgot my camera. I LOVE watching basketball, and to be so close was beyond exhilirating.

And then.... I fell in love. The Blazers signed a new player from Spain named Rudy Fernandez. I was struck by his heartwrenching good looks. But once I moved past the love at first sight phase, I quickly realized...he's QUITE the ballplayer. Constantly keeping the communication lines open with his teammates, NOT hogging the ball, shooting...and shooting well, and having a GREAT attitude on the court (unlike the Warriors). He's incredible. What a great addition to the NBA. I AM SO EXCITED. I feel that he will be a key player in the hopeful success (but not tooooo successful - I've got my boys back home to think about) of this year's team.

Bienvenido Rudy!! Oh, did I mention the best part? He's got a blog!! I hope you can read Spanish :-)

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Welcome to the Goondocks

NOTE: Turn up your speakers to hear "The Goonies R Good Enough" by Cyndi Lauper... And if you want to see a larger version of any of the pictures, just click on it.

For those of you who don't know, the cult classic The Goonies was mostly filmed in Astoria, Oregon. As a huge fan of this movie, I cannot possibly reside in Oregon without sojourning to this Mecca for children of the 1980s. So today I hauled Luna on what I thought would be a 8 hour day trip to Astoria and Cannon Beach in Northwest Oregon to see the sites. You may be thinking "Why in Buddha's name would she waste all that gas driving to see something so lame?" Well, part of the fun IS the drive and seeing everything along the way. Also, if you're asking yourself that question, you just don't get the Goonies.

First of all, Luna was not happy on the first leg of the trip. I think she figured we were just going to the dog park, and when we hit the highway, she let it be known this was NOT what she had in mind for her Saturday.

After four hours of driving, we arrived in Astoria. It is an ADORABLE town. Right on the Columbia River, the houses are all uniquely painted and scattered throughout the hillside. I loved it!

I easily found the Goonies house. To get to it, I had to park my car on the street and walk up a small hill of a driveway that led to several houses. I was disappointed to discover they had someone there working on their house, and the van was blocking the perfect picture angle! So I had to be a gawking tourist and stand directly in front of the house and surreptitiously take pictures. These are the best I could do!

And a view of the Goondocks from the house!

The school from Kindergarten Cop:

Then I headed to Ecola State Park outside of Cannon Beach. This is also where part of the movie was filmed, along with the ending of Point Break (Keanu Reeves...). Most of the bike scene (where Brand gets pushed off of Data's sisters bike) was filmed in the entrance drive to the State Park. Probably one of the windiest, tree-heavy roads I've ever been on...but very cool! I really, really enjoyed this state park. I look forward to going again to go whale watching (apparently a prime spot), sea lion watching, and more beach exploration! From the awesome vantage point, I could see the Tillamook Rock Lighthouse, the Sea Lion Rock (a natural arch rock where a myriad of animal life thrives), Haystock Rock (see below) and plenty of fun trails to hike :-).

A view from the driftwood. It was very misty.

Seagulls on the Sea Lion Rock

Luna was not interested in having her Sea Portrait taken.

A great place to soak up some rays....when the sun is out.

The next stop was Cannon Beach, an absolutely ADORABLE town. It was definitely a tourist type place, with tons of little shops and cafes. It kind of made me wish I hadn't spent all of my money on gas to get there! But I can always go back. The houses were cute. It was in a Tsunami Hazard Zone (as much of Hwy 101 is). Despite that, I would definitely love to vacation there some time in the future.

I was able to get a photo of Haystack Rock. This rock is famous from the movie when Mikey holds up the coin and determines they are in the right spot for treasure hunting.

After that I was pretty much Goonie-d out. But I still had about a 4.5 hour drive home. Sadly, when I went into Walgreens to buy batteries for my camera, I came back to discover Luna had eaten the drumstick bone and chicken wing bone from my lunch that I forgot to throw away. As of yet there haven't been any problems... So she was pretty lazy for the rest of the trip and just laid in her bed in the backseat.

I stopped at a viewpoint and got a couple of pretty snapshots of the sun filtering through some clouds and shedding some light on the ocean. As dark and gray as it was, it really brightened up those spots.

The rest of the drive home went smoothly, with some patches of rain, lots of dark, curvy oceanside roads, and great Sirius radio music. A road trip to people traveling through Oregon...instead of counting out-of-state license plates or slug bugs, count the number of drive-thru espresso shops. You WILL be astounded. I didn't...I might be dorky enough to go on this daylong venture, but I'm not dorky enough to have a espresso shop counting contest with myself...

Now...I might watch The coworker lent me her copy!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

A Year Ago Today...

Last year on October 3rd (that's what it is in Central time!), everyone's favorite new family member was born! Callie B! That day was the happiest day our family had in a long time, and Callie continues to be everyone's pride and joy. At the risk of sounding really corny, she is our little light of hope and desire to be good. Happy FIRST Birthday Callie B...Thanks Ruth and Chad for giving me the most adorable niece ever! Pictures, in her case, say it best...

Autumn Has Colors?

Even though Autumn has just begun in Eugene, the colors are already turning spectacular. I'm excited to see what it looks like in a couple of weeks. I'll have to make another trip out to Silver Falls and take the "Autumn Falls" pictures.

I think I might make my road trip to Astoria/Cannon Beach this weekend to check out the LAND OF THE GOONIES! It'll definitely be an all day trip...

I'll take some Autumn pictures next week and post them ;0)

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Me, Today.

On Nov. 5th I will either have no hair left due to my constantly pulling it out, OR all of my hair will be gray.

On the bright side, one of the trees outside of my office window has turned a delightful Autumn yellow.

I have courtside tickets to a Blazers game next week.

I might eat a mooseburger tomorrow as I watch Sarah Palin divebomb her way out of the election.