September 9th, 2007

#548: Planned Parenthood in Aurora, IL

Well, according to this article on WND my fervent hope is being realized, at least to some extent.

The people involved with this imbroglio seem to have only passing familiarity with the concept of truth:
"I want to assure you that Planned Parenthood was open and truthful throughout the extensive permitting process and continues to welcome the cooperation of the City of Aurora," the letter said. That's even though Trombley told the Chicago Tribune the group left its name off the application because it did not want people to know its plans.
"Trombley" refers to Steve Trombley, president of Planned Parenthood/Chicago Area.

In other words, they were telling the truth and being open...while hiding the nature of their business from the City of Aurora and its citizens. As I said in my prior discussion of the subject, it belies the arrogance typical of some people: "We know what's best for you. Your opposition to what we want to do is only the result of benighted ignorance or outright evil, so anything we do to accomplish our goals is perfectly fine, because nothing must stand in the way of this."

Living, as I do, in the Chicago area, I can say with authority that the issue is not being discussed much in the local media. Certainly no one is discussing the fact that Planned Parenthood has lied to get a slaughterhouse "clinic" built in a place where the locals were likely to reject having it built.

If abortion is such a popular "civil right", why does Planned Parenthood have to lie and cheat? The article says that this is not the first time something like this has happened; apparently it happened in Denver, and all this resulted from construction delays when a PP "clinic" was under construction in Austin, Texas.

I wonder how these people at Planned Parenthood would feel if a power company lied on its zoning and permit application to build a nuclear power plant under false pretenses? You can bet that story would see serious play in the local papers.

#549: Nuclear power

There's a lot of petroleum in Canada. When you find tar in nature, you have found--essentially--really thick crude oil. If there wasn't plenty of "light, sweet" crude floating around in the Earth's crust, we could make gasoline, diesel, and other stuff from tar. It would take a lot more processing and cost more, but we could do it.

But it takes power to "crack" petrochemicals into useful materials; and Shell, I think, has an excellent idea.

Not just because it's efficient, clean, and economical, but because it also will give eco-nazis a heart attack. I mean, how cool is that?

I recently saw an article which said that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is expecting some 300 applications for new nuclear plants over the course of the next year, and they're not sure how they'll cope with the flood of paperwork.

Well, considering that there have been approximately zero applications for new nuclear plants since 1979, I suppose it makes sense that they don't exactly have a robust and well-trained applications processing staff. Government bureaucracy is inherently wasteful and osseous but it's not that hidebound. (Not here. ...not yet, anyway.) But the NRC now finds itself needing people who are qualified to process those applications.

I wonder if I could get a job doing that?

#550: Bringin teh funny [SIC] [which is Latin for "I meant to do that"]

I've noticed that Atomic Fungus, of late, has a lower "fun" quotient than I like.

Well, July was a bad month. It started off very well; and before the first week of July was over I had flown to the Philippines and met my then-sweetie. And before I returned from the Philippines, I had a fiancee.

Of course, then I got home. Some vile bug finished incubating and knocked me on my butt for three weeks, and scarce days after my return my sweetie decided to become my EX-sweetie.

I still don't understand exactly what happened, and when I go through the e-mails I can't extract any more information than I already have. Everything reads as if she had decided to break up and was hunting for excuses to do it; as soon as I would deal with one reason (by pointing out, oh, what actually happened while I was there) she'd come up with another one. In the end it came down to whether or not I would send her $300 per month. I told her I couldn't--not if I was going to do the other things she wanted me to do--and that was the last I heard from her.

Eh? "The other things"? Well, I've lived here since 2004; originally I moved back here with the intention of regrouping prior to a fresh exodus from the nest, but it rapidly became clear that I was needed here--and I'm glad I was here, particularly after Dad's decline, hospitalization, and death over the past year. Especially since Mom can't drive. The ex wanted me to stop "relying on" my Mom.

I didn't mind the ex's insistence on that; it made sense. I should be independent, so I began making plans to get to where I should already be. But it won't happen instantly and it will take time and money.

But she wanted me to do all that and send her $300 per month. I said, "Look, if you want me to do these other things, I don't think it's possible."

Well, considering the circumstances, it looks as if everything she ever said about not being after money was a lie, because after I told her that, she stopped writing to me.

To go from the elation of being in love for the first time in years and finally getting engaged, to--to having her rip your heart out, take a bite out of it, and stomp on the rest...well, it's not easy to recover from that.

So it's easy to see, I suppose, why I haven't had much of a sense of humor, and why I haven't been in the mood for fun stuff. It takes effort, and you can't force "funny". (Note to ABC programming executives: this is why the comedy sitcom is "broken".)

It's not that I'm incapable of humor; far from it. But the drive just isn't there right now. Sarcasm isn't an acceptable substitute, except in certain circumstances; I'm wanting some genuine humor here.

Unfortunately acerbic wit is the best I can do right now. I do tend to have a very dry sense of humor, to the point that people frequently don't get when I am joking and when I am serious. (I never thought I had a deadpan delivery, until someone pointed out that I do.)

Once, a long time ago, some friends and I made some video sketches. One of my friends had read an essay by Isaac Asimov in which Asimov discussed how intelligent he is. He gave all these reasons for thinking he was that frickin' smart; and it led this friend to want to do a parody.

They spoonerized his name (Assic Isimov) and it was about five minutes of the driest satire I ever saw from any of my friends. It was great...and none of them liked it at all. "Nobody ever asks me if I'm really intelligent!" I thought it was funny, but not in the "HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! THAT'S SO FUCKIN'...." sense, but in the smirking "heh" sense.

Then again, it's entirely possible that my then-friends were defective. Somewhere I have about twenty minutes of the same guy who did "Assic Isimov" doing "celebrity impressions" by holding up covers of Rolling Stone to his face with the mouths cut out. This video was screamingly funny to us; but when we showed it to some people far outside our group, there was not a single laugh in the house. I still laugh out loud when I recall his impression of Sting; he stuck his front teeth through the mouth hole and did this hillbilly laugh, "Haw haw haw!" (And right now I'm sitting here chuckling over it because it was damned funny.)

But right now there is very little I can think of that will translate well to a blog, so I'll simply have to hope to do better later on. And I'll leave you with the chorus from a song I heard not long ago on a local rap station:

Girl, you deserve the best things in life
So I hope you have an appetite
'Cause we're goin' to McDonald's!

#551: The lawn mower is still The Awesome

It's been--I don't even know how long it's been since the "east 40" got cut. The grass was 8" deep in spots, so it must've been weeks. Anyway the weather today is in the mid-70s and there's a nice breeze, and it's not humid, so I dug out the mower and set out to get the "east 40" cut, so the Village of Crete wouldn't come after us. The Code Enforcement office will cite you for having grass that's too long even if none of your neighbors care, so we've been worrying about it--but between one thing and another we've been putting it off, and putting it off.

Anyway....

The mower came out of the box in "mulch" mode, but converting to "side discharge" takes seconds: lift a spring-loaded door, insert chute, release door. I cut a single 20' strip of grass and decided no, I was not doing to do this in "mulch" mode, as it would take entirely too frickin' long. Even The Awesome has its limits, after all. So I shut the mower off, got the discharge chute from the garage, and put it in.

...and then I proceeded to cut the extremely long grass at about the same speed I would normally cut the grass, without having to slow down much at all.

Awesome.