Tuesday, May 01, 2007

It was graduation weekend for The Youngest, although he still has some work to complete before he'll be really finished. I'm guessing that means the fine folks who run his alternative high school think he's going to get it all done. The graduation was actually wonderful and it was great for The Oldest to see so many familiar faces from his alma mater, particularly with his freshly minted dual undergraduate degree. The speaker, Emory professor Jonathan Prude, gave an exceptionally wonderful commencement address about the importance of being open to change even though it might sometimes mean accepting our own imperfections to the point of embracing the fact that one's being or one's actions actually need to change. If I could pick a number one life lesson that would be it, to get up every single day remembering to be open to change, perhaps especially if it has to include looking really hard for and at what I'm doing wrong, as difficult as that can be, as shrouded in fog as we sometimes are to ourselves.

The graduation celebration included a fairly unorthodox and extremely long "baccalaureate" Friday evening and was bookended by the opening games of our spring baseball season, so I'm headed into the work week invigorated (read: beat up ten ways to Sunday) by such a busy stretch. The baseball was excellent. We scored twenty-six runs in two games. The good news is that we won both of them. I seem to remember last spring (or was it spring before last?) starting out by scoring sixty something runs in four games and being 1-3 (not easy to do). I like my players. Only a handful of them are returning from previous seasons as most of my regular guys have graduated, but we've got a pretty good dugout vibe, even with the two that the league gave to me out of the rec pool (I think... well, at least one of them). We have three games in four days starting Wednesday, so we'll get to find out just how deep we are in pitchers, right out of the box.

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So, y'all, what was Alec Baldwin thinking? The voicemail message was bad enough. I mean, most of us can relate to completely losing it on occasion, although, in my mind, I hope we all reach a point in our personal evolution (by the time we're his age?) when we cease to interact with anyone in that manner. Calling names is pretty immature, if you ask me, whether it was directed at his daughter or his ex. The fact is that when you start calling names, in my humble opinion, you've lost and you're the one who looks like a jerk. Still, he had to go and make it worse in the spin cycle, by saying he wants to quit 30 Rock (from MSN.com):
According to the transcript from "The View," Baldwin said he intended to take "three years or five years, it doesn't matter," and focus on the problem of divorced parents and their children. He has a book coming out about divorce litigation, possibly this fall, he said.

"There were bills that were proposed in (by California lawmakers) that were killed which were about equality and co-parenting and divorce litigation and ... this is work that I've been creeping up on, but I've been busy," he said.

Acting has lost its importance to him, he said.

"I've had enough of this quite frankly to last me a lifetime, especially in the modern tabloid world and ... there's a bigger thing I want to do, there's a more important thing I want to do," Baldwin said.

Sophmom to Alec: Don't quit your day job, darlin'. It is that which provides you with the platform from which to do this other, "bigger" work.

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The Supreme Court of the United States, in a controversial ruling, recently upheld a ban on partial birth abortions, sending a chill up the spines of those of us who are old enough to remember the bad old days of coat hangers in dirty back rooms. Now, I'm not what I would call pro-abortion. I was pregnant six times in seven years resulting in my three magnificent sons and three terribly difficult miscarriages (as if there's another kind). The first miscarriage resulted in my passing the fetal tissue at home, an event that was painful both physically and emotionally. One that I found friends and family reluctant to discuss with me, causing continued emotional distress. I was a bit more experienced for the next two failed pregnancies and, with my doctors, was able to choose to have a procedure to remove the pregnancy after it was determined to be unviable but before my body rejected it, a much more humane and medically safer way to experience this loss, and, at least technically, considered an abortion. Partial birth abortions are not "birth control" abortions. It's a horrid medical procedure that is virtually always an extension of an agonizing medical problem. There's a great post over at Firedoglake about how a partial birth abortion can save the life of a (viable twin) fetus, or could have, had it been allowed, about the unintended consequences of this ban. Go. Now. Read. What I'm trying to say here, although I'm going the long way around the point (and keep revising trying to get it right), is that it seems to me that the anti-abortion forces are cruelly self-serving (if not downright selfish) to use the tragic and painful health care decisions of women making impossibly difficult choices about their pregnancies as a platform, a springboard from which to try to overturn Roe v. Wade and that I am frightened about any legislation that limits the decision making of women dealing with unviable pregnancies. *sophmom ducks*

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I watched the democratic presidential debate last Thursday night and got so into it I completely forgot to watch the new episode of Gray's Anatomy. Was it just me, or were Clinton and Obama just falling all over themselves to be sweet to and supportive of each other? I swear, by the end of the night, I'm thinking that her right arm and his left had to be sore from waving at each other in agreeable deference. It looked to me like they were already running mates. I thought Joe Biden came off looking pretty dang presidential. His debate performance, perhaps solely his historic one-word answer (when he was given 90 seconds), landed him the entire hour of Meet The Press on Sunday morning. He needs it, as his early gaffes left him way behind in raising funds. I had a dream about him over the weekend. He was standing in a pool holding a press conference with his head just barely above the water and the reporters in the bleachers asking him questions like it was all perfectly normal. I wish him well and hope the folks who can afford to do so will throw him a few dollars just to keep the race interesting. In my opinion, the other most interesting debater was Dennis Kucinich, whose self-deprecating humor and unabashedly proud pacifism landed him a key guest seat on Real Time with Bill Maher (y'all knew I wasn't going to get through a post this long without mentioning Bill). Kucinich was funny, but without there being any question about who he is and what his steadfast positions are, as he claimed the high ground, pointing out that he saw it coming, and that took the unpopular stance of opposing the war when the rest of Washington, including both the Congress and the Press Corps, were following the cooked up and half-baked machinations emanating from the White House. What could possibly be more presidential than standing up for reality amidst hysteria, than seeing the truth despite the fog, than taking an unpopular position because it was, well, right? If everyone who wasn't supporting him because they're sure he doesn't have a chance would support him, then, well, he might have a chance. JMHO.

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Once again, I've gone long (big surprise there, huh?), and if you're still reading you have both my thanks and my sympathy. I will leave you with a musical finale, Dispatch performing "The General" on the Late Late Show (thanks to YouTube):




Peace, out, y'all.

2 comments:

zen wizard said...

We had a prude speak at my high school graduation--but it was just the valedictorian.

She wasn't a prude by choice, either--bless her heart.

Anyway, on the Baldwin thing, this is why Family Law attorneys get $500 per hour: Can you imagine actually advising Basinger to leak that tape?

(And spare me the denials of the Basinger camp. Please: just because I read Star Magazine doesn't mean I'm retarded; it means I'm bored and sleazy.)

I would call that callous disregard for the tender feelings of an adolescent female--at a time when they are very sensitive about that stuff.

(Of course, if you are the well-paid suit, you rationalize it as, "agressively representing the client's legal objective [of vengance on the one male in history who had the 'nads to dump her...]")

Anyway, until I was about 40-years-old, I thought my dad was one of the biggest @$$holes I had ever met--now, as I reflect back, there was some mitigating provocation--namely, me and my sister.

I mean, Ghandi himself would have lost his temper...

Some of the things are still unforgiveable, but...I guess I see them in a perspective that allows me to cut Baldwin some slack.

Turning the mirror the other way for a minute--it's strangely voyeristic of us as a people to desire and crave a tape of a middle-aged male losing it with his teenage daughter, isn't it?

I mean, the aforementioned $500-an-hour attorney gets paid for that $h!t, and even he feels like taking a shower after listening to it. What's next, a video of his prostate exam on YouTube??

sophmom said...

Zen, you're, of course, right about a lot of this. Basinger *should* be ashamed for leaking the tape. I never really thought about it in terms of her lawyer(s) advising her to do so. Ewww. It's not okay to talk like that, though. I'm not saying it doesn't happen, but I've worked hard to learn how not to and I don't. I like Baldwin. He's smart and cute and funny and I'll continue to like him. I just know a little more about him than I wanted to know. Even when kids are impossible, the adults are still supposed to be, well, the adults. JMHO.

Thanks for stopping by. I keep forgetting this blog is over here. When I got the email notification of your comment, I couldn't at first figure out why it wasn't where it belonged, over at you-know-where: http://www.dotcalm.blog-city.com

Peace, darlin'.