Wednesday, August 31, 2005

We can't afford our gasoline!

Click on the site below and enjoy!

Comical musical and cartoon clip about "we can't afford the price of

President Nero guitars while New Orleans dies

Bush Interrupts Vacation to Get Away from Work

Once and for all: Crawford isn't a "vacation home," it's "the Western White House," and there is nothing that Bush can do in D.C. that he can't do there. Right, Scotty?

MR. McCLELLAN: Like I said, this is one of the most devastating storms in our nation's history, and the President, after receiving a further update this morning, made the decision that he wanted to get back to D.C. and oversee the response efforts from there.

Q What is he unable to -- what is he unable to do in Crawford he could do --

MR. McCLELLAN: We'll talk to you all later. We've got to go. Thank you.

We'll take this one: What can he do in D.C.? He can get away from actually being near the hurricane region, that's what he can do.


This is the greatest disaster to hit our nation in most of our lifetimes. Worse than 9-11. New Orleans is underwater. Biloxi is 90 percent destroyed. Who knows how many dead. Who knows how many homeless. Who knows how many jobless. We have a bona fide refugee crisis on our hands.

There will be a time for a full accounting of what went wrong, both preparing for this thing and relief efforts afterward. I don't know if the time is now or later. Honestly, I don't much care. I'm too horrified by what I'm seeing today. It's overwhelming.

I just wish that the president gave a damn about what's happenend. Unfortunately, he's too busy playing 'country rock star".

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Gonzales wants to restrict even more of our civil liberties

It's time to wake up people! Get educated about what our government is doing to us. Do you want to be subjects or citizens? The choice is going to have to be made soon or it will be too late.


Gonzales Faults Senate Version of Patriot Act Legislation

By Dan Eggen
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, August 30, 2005; A09

Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales yesterday criticized a Senate bill that would place new restrictions on law enforcement in the USA Patriot Act, saying the legislation would hamper the government's ability to prevent terrorist attacks.

Gonzales, during a meeting with editors and reporters at The Washington Post, said he favors a competing House version of the antiterrorism law that includes fewer restrictions on the government.

"I have a personal preference for the House version," Gonzales said. "There are certain provisions of the Senate version that make it more difficult to protect our country." He said he was hopeful that "at the end of the day . . . we will have a conference bill" that is closer to the House version of the legislation.

Gonzales's remarks represent the administration's sharpest criticism of the Senate legislation, which was approved by unanimous consent of the GOP-controlled Senate and co-sponsored by the influential chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.). Until now, Justice Department officials have signaled their preference for the House bill while avoiding explicit criticism of the Senate version.

A spokesman for Specter did not return a telephone call seeking comment yesterday.

Sixteen provisions of the controversial Patriot Act, which Congress voted overwhelmingly to enact weeks after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, are due to expire at the end of this year unless Congress acts. Although most of the law would become permanent under either bill, the Senate legislation includes tighter restrictions on the FBI's power to seize business records and would place a four-year time limit on two of the law's most controversial provisions.

Gonzales said yesterday that the Senate bill's tighter provisions would make it too difficult for investigators to conduct secret searches or obtain "roving wiretaps" in terrorism investigations. He also said the threshold for obtaining business records, including those held by libraries, would be set too high by the Senate bill.

Parts of the Patriot Act have come under fire from advocacy groups, lawmakers and hundreds of local governments as intrusions on civil liberties. Gonzales and other Justice officials say such fears are overblown and that no abuses have been documented.

A new poll to be released today by the University of Connecticut found that a majority of Americans support the Patriot Act, but most are not knowledgeable about the law's details when asked specific questions.

The poll also found that "the more the public knows about the Patriot Act, the less they support it," according to a summary of the findings. Less than 60 percent of those who know the intent of the law support it, compared with 70 percent who do not know its intent, the survey said.

The survey of 802 adults also found that only 14 percent of those polled supported all the major provisions of the law when asked about them in detail.

Katrina Update

Reposted from another list.

For those that have been unable to watch the news today concerning the after-effects of Hurricane Katrina. I have gathered some of the following on CNN:

1)Multiple breaches of the dikes surrounding New Orleans are allowing additional flooding. Although the French Quarter is still dry, water is rising in the city.
2)The Gov of La is considering total evac of all remaining people in New Orleans. There is no food, clean water or fuel. Of course, their is still booze in the French Quarter, so some are seen roaming the streets of that neighborhood drunk.
3)790,00 people are without power in La.
4)656,00 people are withought power in Al.
5)80% of Miss is without power
6)There is 6' of water surrounding Tulane Univ Hosp. The backup generator is reported to have failed. 200 plus of the most critical patients will need to be airlifted from the hospital.
7)Total death toll unknown. Miss. reports that deaths in their state alone will reach into the hundreds. One official said they new where some of the dead were, but they had no place to put them anyway. They will adress the problem in a few days.
8)1,200 people rescued by Coast Guard helcopters alone so far.
9)I-10 over Lake Pachatrain(sp?) has been knocked out with large spans only showing the cement pillers the roadway rested on sticking out of the lakes. This was one of the few evac routes available to New Orleans.
10)It was admitted that many of the first rescues were done by neighbors using their own fishing boats and cruising through neighborhoods.
11)What a shock!!!! Looting is going on in New Orleans.
12. Those who got out early, are better off than those who didn't.
13. Those who live above sea level have fewer problems.

There has been one GI killed for every day the Bush has been in office

This month a major Bush milestone was quietly passed, virtually unnoticed by the media.

As of this month, George W. Bush has sent a soldier to die for every day he has been in the White House.

Of course, that is only the official Pentagon-approvedĀ® body count. Other countries, where they have been quietly shipping the bodies, tell an entirely different story.

Then, of course, there is the international report of the highly-respected medical journal the Lancet, which had the temerity to publish the number of Iraqis killed in Bush's grand adventure -- though, of course everyone knows that non-white people don't actually matter -- well, at least not as much.

This must certainly be a greater honor than when he became the governor who ordered the most executions in modern US history, a task which, according to conservative cheerleader and bad-tie aficionado Tucker Carlson, he rather enjoyed.

Congratulations, Mr. Bush; I have no doubt you'll wear it proudly, as the only military decoration you legitimately earned.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Hurricane Katrina

What a mess this one is making! Our thoughts and prayers are with you in the South as you evacuate or choose to stay the course. What has upset me about the government shelters is you are not allowed pets. "Leave your pets at home" is the message. Well, if people have to leave or risk dying, why should they leave their furry family members to die alone? For me, I'd rather gnaw off my arm than go to a government shelter.


NEW ORLEANS - Hurricane Katrina plowed into this below-sea-level city Monday with howling, 145-mph winds and blinding rain that ripped away pieces of the roof of the Superdome, knocked out power and flooded some homes to the ceilings. Katrina weakened overnight to a Category 4 storm and turned slightly eastward before hitting land about 6:10 a.m. CDT east of Grand Isle near the bayou town of Buras, providing some hope that this vulnerable city would be spared the storm's full fury.


We are planning a trip to New Orleans in April for Mardi Gras. Seeing the French Quarter and all the cemeteries is one of my must do things before I leave this life.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

You know bush is in trouble when ....

"The U.S. senator from Pennsylvania, (Rick Santorum) who is third in the leadership, says one of the reasons people should vote for him is because he is in leadership," Casey said in an interview Thursday. "But he is not asking the tough questions."

Yesterday, Santorum disputed Casey's characterization, saying he had raised concerns about military and diplomatic progress in Iraq with administration officials, spoken publicly about intelligence failings that preceded the 9/11 attacks, and bucked the President in pushing for measures that crack down on Syria and Iran, which have been blamed for aiding insurgents [...]

"I have a very clear track record of being supportive of the policy, but not necessarily all of the tactics," the two-term senator said. "That shows a level of involvement and sophistication that my opponent has not grasped... . I still have concerns about our level of activity with respect to fighting the insurgency, and the number of former Baathists who are put in positions of power in the country and their relationships with Iran. I have expressed those concerns publicly and privately."

However, his public statements on those issues could not be found.

Today, Santorum was still unable to find evidence of said disagreements.

Republican U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum's office acknowledged yesterday that it cannot locate public statements of the senator questioning the Iraq war, despite the senator's claim last week that he has publicly expressed his concerns.

But Santorum said that doesn't mean he hasn't made the comments.

Things have gotten so bad for Bush, that Republicans are now trying to invent disagreements with the president in order to distance themselves from the Bush disaster.

Why does Big Brother need to know my reading list?

This is a disaster for libraries. It's hard enough to get people, especially young people, to read, but if they have to worry that something they may pick will have the FBI or other gestapo agency knocking down their door, they'll stay away.

There was another country, not that long ago, that burned books and outlawed ideas that didn't fit with their dictator. Looks like it's coming to us soon.


Library sues over controversial Patriot Act By Chris Sanders

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A controversial Patriot Act clause allowing the U.S. government to demand information about library patrons' borrowing habits is being challenged in federal court for the first time by a library.

The lawsuit was filed against U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and FBI Director Robert Mueller in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut by an unnamed library and the American Civil Liberties Union.

The suit -- filed on August 9 and made public by the ACLU on Thursday -- calls the FBI's order to produce library records "unconstitutional on its face" and said a gag order preventing public discussion of the lawsuit is an unlawful restraint on speech.

Critical details of the lawsuit were blacked out on the ACLU's Web site in compliance with the gag order. The library is thought to be based in Connecticut since the lawsuit was filed there with the participation of the Connecticut branch of the ACLU.

The ACLU said in its lawsuit that legal changes made under the Patriot Act "remove any requirement of individualized suspicion, (and) the FBI may now ... demand sensitive information about innocent people."

Enacted after the September 11, 2001, attacks, the Patriot Act lets U.S. authorities seek approval from a special court to search personal records of terror suspects from bookstores, businesses, hospitals and libraries, in a provision known as the library clause.

The FBI letter requesting the information, called a National Security Letter, is effectively a gag order because it tells the recipient that the request must be kept secret.

As a result, "the Patriot Act is itself gagging public debate about the Patriot Act," said Ann Beeson, the ACLU's lead lawyer in the case.

The civil liberties group has asked the District Court to lift the gag order so its client can participate in the public debate and upcoming congressional hearings on the Patriot Act. A hearing about lifting the gag order is scheduled for Wednesday in Bridgeport, Connecticut.

An FBI spokesman referred calls to the Department of Justice. A Justice spokesman said the department had no comment and declined to say if it had required libraries to turn over records under the Patriot Act.

The U.S. House of Representatives, ignoring protests from civil liberties groups, voted this summer to reauthorize 16 provisions of the act that expire at the end of the year, including the library clause. The Senate is expected to take up the matter after lawmakers return from an August recess.

A copy of the ACLU lawsuit said the library involved "strictly guards the confidentiality and privacy of its library and Internet records, and believes it should not be forced to disclose such records without a showing of compelling need and approval by a judge."

The FBI, in a copy of the letter demanding the library records and attached to the lawsuit, said "the information sought is relevant to an authorized investigation to protect against international terrorism or clandestine intelligence activities."

A chain blog from Laura :-)

OK, so I was reading blogs today and found this on Laura's. She got others doing one, so I just had to do one for myself.

7 Things you plan to do before you die.

1. See the world
2. Publish a novel
3. Finish my college degree
4. See my kids married
5. Become more fluent in German
6. Lose weight
7. Join the mile high club

7 Things you can do.

1. Watch Jerry Springer
2. Take a decent photo
3. Write ok
4. Walk and chew bubble gum at the same time
5. Program my VCR
6. Bike 12-mile rides
7. Scrapbook

7 Things you can't do.

1. Pee standing up
2. Watch GWB talk
3. Play guitar
4. Play Halo 2
5. Watch FOX "news"
6. See my feet while standing up
7. Cut a straight line

7 Things that attract you to the opposite sex.

1. Eyes
2. Smile
3. Brains
4. Nice butt
5. Big legs
6. Hair
7. Sense of humor

7 Things you say most.

1. Grow Up!
2. You're grounded
3. Because I'm the mommy
4. Corner!
5. Do you know what your kids did today?
6. He's NOT my president
7. Yeah right

7 Celebrity crushes

1. Julian McMahon
2. David Boreanez
3. Matt Damon
4. John Travolta
5. James Marsters as "Spike"
6. Tommy Lee Jones
7. Kevin Sorbo

7 Songs I'm currently digging

1. Jay Gordon "Slept so long"
2. Matchbox 20 "Push"
3. Ozzy "Diary of a madman"
4. Rammstein "Engle"
5. Emerald Rose "Summerland"
6. Stevie Nicks "Planets of the Universe"
7. System of a Down "Chop Suey"

Carnival time

This week is our annual carnival. I know that's not too common these days in America to have a travelling carnival come into town, but it's a tradition here. It's one of the best parts of summer. This year, it seems like it has really gone down hill, with very few decent rides.

Yesterday was the pay-one-price matinee. The kids rode many, many rides. Trevor rode the Super Drop thing at least a half dozen times. Arielle preferred the Tilt-a-whirl and the Bumper cars. Randy and I rode the tilt once. I'm just not into riding.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Isn't religious freedom a right in Amerika?

This case has me very upset. What right does this "judge" have to say one religion is wrong and prohibit parents from sharing their beliefs with their child?

What if the parents were practicing Catholics? The outcry from the world would be immediate.


Court Overturns Judge's Order In Wicca Case

Divorce Decree Had Instructed Parents To Shield Son From Beliefs
POSTED: 4:33 pm EST August 17, 2005

INDIANAPOLIS -- A judge exceeded his authority by ordering an
Indianapolis Wiccan activist and his ex-wife to shield their
9-year-old son from what his decree called their "non-mainstream
religious beliefs and rituals," the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled

The appeals court threw out the order from Marion Superior Court
Judge Cale Bradford, citing a state law that gives a custodial
parent the authority to determine a child's upbringing -- including
religious training -- unless certain exceptions are met.

Divorcing parents can agree to allow such orders, or judges can find
that certain limitations on upbringing are needed to protect the
child from physical and emotional harm.

The Indiana Civil Liberties Union, representing Thomas E. Jones and
Tammy Bristol of Indianapolis, had challenged the
religious provision of the divorce decree.

Jones, a Wiccan activist who has coordinated Pagan Pride Day in
Indianapolis for at least six years, said earlier this year that he
and his ex-wife were stunned when they saw the language in the
judge's dissolution decree on Feb. 13, 2004.

"We both had an instant resolve to challenge it. We could not accept
it," Jones said when the appeal was filed this year.

A court commissioner wrote the unusual order into the couple's
dissolution decree after a routine report by the court's Domestic
Relations Counseling Bureau noted that both Jones and his ex-wife are
pagans who send their son, Archer, now 10, to a Catholic elementary

The decree said "the parents are directed to take such steps as are
needed to shelter (the child) from involvement and observation of
these non-mainstream religious beliefs and rituals." The splitting
parents challenged that section of the decree, but Bradford let it

The order was criticized by various religious and advocacy groups.

Wiccans consider themselves witches, pagans or neo-pagans, and say
their religion is based on respect for the earth, nature and the
cycle of the seasons.

Wiccans contend their religion is becoming more mainstream. The
parents' appeal said there were about 1 million pagans worldwide in
2002, more than the numbers who practice Sikhism, Taoism and other
established religions in the United States.

Among other things, the appeal claimed the decree was
unconstitutionally vague because it did not define mainstream
religion. But the appeals court based its ruling on state law.

ICLU attorney Ken Falk said nobody fought the parent's challenge, so
an appeal was very unlikely.

"I think the bottom line is the court said a parent has the right to
determine the upbringing of their child absent some compelling
orstrong reason," Falk said. "I have to tell you in reading all the
cases, I've never found a case where both parents agreed yet a court
directed some other type of religious upbringing." Cop


Remove Judge Cale Bradford

Message: Please Sign this Petition & Forward so we can stop this from
happening again.

Remove Judge Cale Bradford for blatant disregard of civil rights

Iraq is greater than all other wars?

I read this and couldn't stop laughing, so I had to snag and share with everyone who hasn't read it. :-)


Iraq is, like, every war combined
by kos at
Tue Aug 23rd, 2005 at 00:42:19 PDT
Wow. I didn't realize Iraq was so ginormous a war!

President Bush compared the fight against terrorism to both world wars and other great conflicts of the 20th century as he tried to reassure an increasingly skeptical public on Monday to support U.S. military involvement in Iraq.

So, Iraq is like both world wars, plus Korea, plus Viet Nam (both the French and American editions), plus the Falkland Islands, plus Grenada, plus the Gulf War, plus Kosovo, plus the Spanish-American War ... combined! Or something like that.

Such a humongous war should generate a call for sacrifice, shouldn't it? Tax raises to pay for the war. A draft to populate our depleted ranks. I mean, such sacrifices were made during those previous wars, weren't they? And they were only mere shadows of this war.

Oh, and he also repeated the words "9-11" five times, in case anyone has forgotten the massive terrorist attack that has nothing to do with Iraq, perpetrated by people who came from and/or still run loose inside the borders of so-called allies like Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

What happened to his "Christian" morals?

Now, I may not be a huge Biblical scholar, but isn't there something in there about "Thou shall NOT kill?"


Robertson called for the assassination of Venezuela's president

Pat Robertson, host of Christian Broadcasting Network's The 700 Club and founder of the Christian Coalition of America, called for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

From the August 22 broadcast of The 700 Club:

ROBERTSON: There was a popular coup that overthrew him [Chavez]. And what did the United States State Department do about it? Virtually nothing. And as a result, within about 48 hours that coup was broken; Chavez was back in power, but we had a chance to move in. He has destroyed the Venezuelan economy, and he's going to make that a launching pad for communist infiltration and Muslim extremism all over the continent.

You know, I don't know about this doctrine of assassination, but if he thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it. It's a whole lot cheaper than starting a war. And I don't think any oil shipments will stop. But this man is a terrific danger and the United ... This is in our sphere of influence, so we can't let this happen. We have the Monroe Doctrine, we have other doctrines that we have announced. And without question, this is a dangerous enemy to our south, controlling a huge pool of oil, that could hurt us very badly. We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability. We don't need another $200 billion war to get rid of one, you know, strong-arm dictator. It's a whole lot easier to have some of the covert operatives do the job and then get it over with.

Monday, August 22, 2005

It's Carnival Week

Our local firemen have a carnival every year and it's this week.

I had to cover a meeting tonight, so I couldn't take the kids, but Randy did since he didn't have to be to work until 11 p.m. I hate missing things like that. Work sure is a four-letter word.

Tomorrow, I don't have to cover anything, so I'll be able to go to the kiddie/pet parade with the kids and Adonis, then we'll go down to the carnival for a couple hours. Wednesday and Friday are the matinees where you only pay $12 and ride all you want from 1-5 p.m. We never miss that. I don't ride, but will take photos and eat French fries. Yes, they are FRENCH not FREEDOM fries.

Saturday is the big parade. My daughter will be marching in it with the band. She looks too adorible in her uniform. This is her second year marching. Just ordered the marching shoes last week. Hopefully, they'll be here in time.

We'll have Sunday to finish up shopping, then school starts on Monday morning. Where did the summer go?

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Back to school shopping

Took the kids out shopping today for some back to school clothes. They've both shot up quite a bit over the summer and nothing fits them anymore. They found enough to give a new outfit each day for the first week, so it's a start.

Still need to find them shoes. Why in the world do sneakers need to cost so much? I know, more ranting about the price of living, but come on! They'll wear the sneakers for a couple months and need new ones, so why do they cost $50-$100?

After that shock, I'm ready to head back into a nice D&D game and beat the tar out of some orc who looks like he might have created sneakers!

What sort of novel should I write?

It's funny how dead on this one came out. I do love a good fantasy novel and have actually started to write one!


FANTASY! - Mystical, magical mayhem! You feel the
urge to write of fantastic worlds that never
were and the beings that might live there. Are
they Lands of Wonder or adventures of Magical
Folly? JRR Tolkien and Tanith Lee are your

What Kind of Novel Should I Write?
brought to you by Quizilla

Friday, August 19, 2005

Which magical order are you in?

You are a Spiritualist. Your magic flows from the
primal forces of the cosmos. You could be a
gentle Healer, a miraculous Prophet or a
spirit-summoning War-mage with the strong link
your soul provides to the realms beyond
reality. You have preternatural abilities,
intutively sensing the personality of people
you meet and discerning events yet to happen.
You enhance your aura with meditative pursuits.
You are a good judge of character but your
idealism or morality can confuse others.

Which Magical Order Are You In?
brought to you by Quizilla

When it rains .....

Our 30-gallon hot water tank sprung a leak during the night. Of course, we didn't realize it until our daughter took an ice cold shower this morning.

Randy got home from work at 8 a.m. and went to see if the pilot light had blown out again. He finds water all over the floor, coming out of tank. He was not amused. He takes Arielle to band camp, then goes to the hardware store to get a new tank. They are HEAVY! I had to help carry the thing in the house and down into the basement.

Two and a half hours later, the new tank is in, the floor and our Golden Retriever Adonis are muddy messes and I can actually have a hot shower before physical therapy. Now Randy is trying to get some sleep because he has to be back to work at 7 p.m.

Ever wonder when the next shoe is going to fall?

Thursday, August 18, 2005

On my way to work tonight

I'm on my way to Benezette tonight to cover a meeting and see this magnificent girl standing along side the road happily grazing away. Of course, I had to stop and take her photo.

Even though I've seen many elk, I still have to stop every time I see one. It's hard to describe exactly how HUGE these animals are until you are standing right there with them.

Let Rush know he's a LOZER

Limbaugh baselessly compared Cindy Sheehan to Bill Burkett: "Her story is nothing more than forged documents"

Nationally syndicated radio host Rush Limbaugh equated the actions of Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a soldier killed in Iraq, with those of Bill Burkett, the retired Texas Air National Guard officer who provided CBS' 60 Minutes with unauthenticated documents regarding President Bush's National Guard record. Sheehan is currently staging an anti-war protest outside Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas. Limbaugh said that Sheehan's "story is nothing more than forged documents."

Sheehan's "story" is, in fact, that her son died while fighting in Iraq. A Humvee mechanic, Spc. Casey Sheehan was one of seven U.S. soldiers killed in Baghdad's Sadr City on April 4, 2004, by rocket-propelled grenades and small arms fire.

From the August 15 broadcast of The Rush Limbaugh Show:

LIMBAUGH: I mean, Cindy Sheehan is just Bill Burkett. Her story is nothing more than forged documents. There's nothing about it that's real, including the mainstream media's glomming onto it. It's not real. It's nothing more than an attempt. It's the latest effort made by the coordinated left.

fax: 212-563-9166

The Rush Limbaugh Show
1270 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10020

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Tonight's Moon

Saw this tonight when we were walking the dogs and had to run and get the camera.

Cool vampire game coming out soon

Back for now

We got back from State College this afternoon and grabbed Trevor and then went on another of our grueling 12-mile bike rides. OUCH! My knee is killing me right now, but it feels good to be tired from all the exercise. I WILL lose a few pounds this year if it kills me.

I have three new assignments waiting to be written tonight, plus two meetings to cover tomorrow and write about. I hope to find some elk to photograph when I'm in Benezette for a meeting. They are such gorgeous animals! The fifth annual elk festival is coming up in a few weeks, so I'll be at that.

Randy and I think we'll go to Gettysburg in mid-October to celebrate our anniversary. It's a little late, but it'll be cooler then and I'll be able to be outside more without getting sick. We'll spend the night at a haunted bed and breakfast and stay out on the battlefields as late as possible, rather than do a "ghost tour" this time. We weren't pleased at all last time. It wasn't worth the money.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Es regnet hier

I'm just getting ready to start the day and since I won't be around much, I'll post a few thoughts here.

Arielle has band camp from 8:30 - 4:30. Since it's raining, they won't have to be outside practicing marching all day. She'll be thrilled about that. She didn't know what she wanted to take for lunch, so we have to stop at the grocery store on our way to the school. I'll drop her off, then go to my meeting. When it's over, it'll be time to head out for Randy's dentist appointment. We'll drop Trevor off with my dad, run to the landfill to pick up my prize and go to State College.

Lots of running all before noon.

I'll write up the article about the meeting while we're down there and send it from my brother's place. Nice to have a laptop to travel with. :-) I have a couple articles I've been working on, so I can get a start while sitting in the waiting room. A root canal will probably take a couple hours. Should be able to get at least one finished.

More from the road later on.

Monday, August 15, 2005

The World's Shortest Personality Test

You are elegant, withdrawn, and brilliant.
Your mind is a weapon, able to solve any puzzle.
You are also great at poking holes in arguments and common beliefs.

For you, comfort and calm are very important.
You tend to thrive on your own and shrug off most affection.
You prefer to protect your emotions and stay strong.

This does fit me quite a bit. Seems like I love to argue. OK, so I guess I do. :-)

Pre-season football has started

Is it that time of year already? The Steelers are kicking the Eagles butt tonight. We turned it on late because we're playing Dungeons and Dragons. Must have our priorities after all. :-) My current incarnation is a half-elf wizard named Elspeth.

Trevor and I watched Land of the Dead today. It is excellent and I highly recommend it to anyone who reads this. George A. Romero is the man when it comes to zombies. It made up for the last movies we saw that were not so good, which was pretty much everything so far this summer with the exception of Fantastic Four. Julian McMahon is the MAN! Tall, dark and oh so yummy!!!

Got a call a bit ago that I won a drawing at the landfill open house on Saturday. I won either a jacket, fleece or something else. I'll pick it up in the morning on my way to cover yet another meeting. At least it'll make the whole trip worth while. Gotta love free stuff.

Randy is going for a root canal in State College, so I'll leave from the meeting and we'll drive right there. It's about a 1 1/2 hour drive. I'm going with to drive him home. He probably won't be in any shape to driver himself after all that fun at the dentist. I had one several years ago by an incompetent quack and still have trouble with it to this day.

A few links to share with everyone

I'm a major Horror Movie fan and spent entirely too much time searching the web for sites about new horror movies. Here are three of the ones I visit regularly:


Rob' u="Gretchen316&linkID=">"> Rob Zombie's Director's Blog

Zombie Army - Official Fansite for Land of the Dead

Click here to become a member of The Wolf Pack!

Medical Insurance rantings

Just back from physical therapy and want to write a few lines here before I start with the regular work of the day.

The pain is slowly decreasing in my arm and I was able to take about 200 photos on Saturday night without too much trouble. Maybe I should have done this sooner?

I go for P.T. two more times this week, then it'll probably drop to twice a week until the insurance max of 20 visits a year is reached. What if 20 visits aren't enough? Shouldn't that decision be made by a qualified doctor? Having pencil pushers say that is enough is infuriating!

If I were the CEO of some company, ripping off the shareholders and furnishing my bathroom in solid gold while hiring out a leer jet to visit Paris on a weekly basis, I could go until the arm was healed, but since I'm just a nobody writer, well, 20 visits is good enough. After all, do I really need full use of my right arm? Just because I'm right handed and need to be able to write, take photographs, etc... well, I should be grateful that I'm even allowed those 20 visits to begin with. Right?

Enough of the medical rants. I could go on for hours about that, but then I'd never get anything else done.

Sunday, August 14, 2005


So I'm sitting here watching the US National championships on TV when should be working on my article on the landfill. Just can't force myself to write anymore tonight on it.

These girls are so tiny! I think I weighed more when I was born than the new champion - Nastia Luikin weighs now.

I miss going to meets. We use to go to all the Penn State and high school ones and photograph them. Maybe I'll get back into it this fall.

Price of Gas

What is wrong with our "leader"? How can he look himself in the mirror every day? People aren't going to be able to afford to even go to work before too long. It's going to cost $3 a gallon by the end of the month. What a way for a "president" to be remember as the "man" who let America be turned into a third world country. WOO HOO what a legacy!

Demo Derby

What a fun night last. We get to the fair for the demo derby and it had started early, so we missed the first two heats. While we were there photographing it, a nasty storm came in and got everyone wet and cold. I missed getting photos of the last 10 minutes of the thing. Can't ruin my camera for that.

Before we got there 14 people had been struck by lighting and eight of them taken to the hospital by ambulance. The rest refused treatement, probably because they were so embarrassed about how it happened. They were standing under a shelter, holding onto the METAL POLES! Hello? What is wrong with people?

Have one article written and sent so far this afternoon as well as a few photos, just two more articles and I'm done for the day. What a relief!

Tomorrow it's off to physical therapy and maybe catch up on some of the other writing I need to do.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Trying to post a photo here

Took this photo when we were out camping the other day. It was right after a violent storm in Northwestern Pennsylvania.

Can everyone see this?

Today's my 17th wedding anniversary

And am I doing something romantic like sipping champagne in Paris or Rome? NOPE!! Not this girl. Instead, I'm working all day.

Just got back from the exciting world of landfill operations. That was a real treat to start off my day.

From there, I went to interview a new business owner. Luckily, it was a restaurant called The Cat's Meow, so I had the most delicious cup of wedding soup.

I'm home to do an interview about a new religious group for a magazine, then my next stop will be a local fair to photograph a demolition derby. Then I'll have all day tomorrow to finish up those articles and send them up to the paper and magazine.

Time for a vacation soon!

Friday, August 12, 2005

Physical Therapy Hurts!

My arm is throbbing from the first visit. I have to go three times next week, plus do all sorts of work on my own.

Of course, I couldn't just come home and rest. I had to go interview a priest for an article I'm working on. Then run about a million more errands. Just finished writing up one article. The other will wait until I interview two more people for it.

Ah well, I can rest when I'm dead. Right?

Think we're going to see Skeleton Key later on. It looks really good in the previews.

A new magazine wants an article!

Yah!!! I have been sending out dozens and dozens of query letters lately and finally have started to get a few nibbles. :-)

This is a religious magazine, but I can handle working for anyone who is willing to pay in REAL money. My kids have this pesky habit of eating, so....

The article will be about a new adult educaiton program that is just starting in the area. I've already interviewed the priest who spoke at the last program and am just waiting for the program coordinator to call and schedule her interview and it'll be off to the editor.

The article is also going in a local newspaper. Gotta love getting paid twice for the same article!

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Another thing to worry about

Spent the morning at the doctor's office with my 10-year old son today. He's been having a lot of bloody noses lately and it's to a point where I'm worried.

The doc is sending him for a bunch of tests tomorrow. He mentioned a possible blood disorder and then was asking questions that leads me to believe he's concerned about leukemia! That scares me to death. My little boy has been through way too much already in his young life and I can stand the thought of something else wrong. :(

I broke down and had the doc check out my right arm as well. It's been hurting since April and getting weaker. I have trouble holding up my camera because of it. That is the only reason I even mentioned it. If I can't take photos, I can't work and if I can't work .... Anyway, he says it might be tennis elbow (as if I play tennis!) and has me on a steroid for eight days to try and help with the pain a bit, then is sending me for physical therapy. Friday is my first appointment for that one. We'll see how it goes. Of course, the insurance won't pay for all the visits the doc thinks I should have. I mean really, who knows more about medicine? A doctor or some pencil-pushing insurance geek who only cares about money?

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

A fun way to earn a Free iPod

Check it out!

Good luck everyone!