Thursday, August 31, 2006

Local News

Please check out the recent press release from the College Democrats. It was printed in the Idaho State Journal, on the Idaho Examiner website, and is now up over at Students for Grant. Also, if you are interested, in this week's edition of The Bengal you can read about the recent election of a new Pro-Tempore for the Student Senate at Idaho State University.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Not Dead

I really am not dead. I know it appears that way with how little blogging I do lately, but really, I promise, I am not dead.

Fall semester began last Monday and the adjusting to the new schedule has been just that—an adjustment. There is something about getting up early when you go to bed as late as I do that just doesn’t work too well. Not sure what that is exactly, but something tells me I am sleep deprived…

Last night I caught most of the 58th Annual Emmys. Now, I’m a sucker for awards shows, but I must say the broadcast was horrific. I knew who had won before it happened (so much for a live show) and the host, Conan O’Brien, really gets on my nerves. Not to mention the fact that The West Wing only won one award (Alan Alda for supporting actor) and there was very little mention of John Spencer and waaaaay to much talk of Aaron Spelling as the camera showed his separated and tearful family. Whatever.

We had our first College Democrats meeting Thursday night. Hopefully I can post the results of that meeting over at Students for Grant sometime soon.

I hit my first roadblock with the Stallings Collection. Casework. That is all I have to say about it. So it goes. Better to hit those roadblocks now.

And last and certainly not least—Gerald Ford is not dead. Angioplasty, pace maker, and who know what else later, the man is still alive and kicking. Thank God. The day Gerald Ford dies I will be having a breakdown. I love that man. Afterall, he is my all-time favorite Republican.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Tenth Street

The title began as "Twenty Thousand Roads," stealing the concept from a new-found historian, but my bike ride to and from campus revised the title.

Yesterday I had this overwhelming feeling that the pieces of life's puzzle were fitting together. For the first time in months I knew without a doubt that everything was okay. Much to the dismay of my readers don't expect a political post out of this...

This morning on my ride to school I listened contently to Cat Stevens' "Morning Has Broken" and on my ride home I had an interesting experience also with a soundtrack of sorts. Between 9th and 10th Street, probably on East Lewis, there is this house that I ride past every trip to campus. Today it was cooling off (looking as if it were about to rain) and in front of this house the trees create a canopy over the sidewalk. As I rode under that "canopy," I ducked just slightly, hoping that I wouldn't lose either my head or my Washington Nationals baseball cap to one of the branches, was thinking of Walter Lippman, and "Always on Your Side" by Sting & Sheryl Crow came on my iPod. The best description of that moment is one of peacefulness.

Anyway, this post is better than no post at all--thought severely lacking in political commentary and observation. Forgive me.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Best Wishes to President Ford

Those of you who know me well know that whenever I see a lowered flag and can't seem to identify the reason I panic. My fear is that President Ford has passed away. Granted the man is getting up there in years, I personally don't want to see him go. He has been and remains the most respected Republican alive--by me anyway.
"I once told you that I am not a saint, and I hope never to see the day that I cannot admit having made a mistake. So I will close with another confession. Frequently, along the tortuous road of recent months from this chamber to the President's House, I protested that I was my own man. Now I realize that I was wrong. I am your man, for it was your carefully weighed confirmation that changed my occupation. The truth is I am the people's man, for you acted in their name, and I accepted and began my new and solemn trust with a promise to serve all the people and do the best that I can for America." --President Ford
So, as President Ford undergoes treatment and evaluation at the Mayo Clinic, I wish him well.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

World Trade Center

It isn't often that I become engrossed in the idea of seeing a movie. I saw Ray the first night it was in Pocatello, but other than that one film I'm not sure I've seen any others the first night they were out (in Pocatello or elsewhere). I've seen several within the week--most recently Batman Begins and Million Dollar Baby which are both Morgan Freeman flicks as far as I am concerned and need no explanation as to why I just had to see them. Generally however, my philosophy is why not wait until it is on DVD and you can take it home and watch it in your pajamas eating whatever you want to with the benefit of the pause button?

This time the movie that has me engrossed is World Trade Center. The difference is, the movie was out last week and I haven't seen it. Why? Oliver Stone.

I have in the past explained my fascination with Stone and have been a fan of his work, but the one picture of his that I have seen more than any other is JFK. When I watch the film everytime in the trial when Jim Garrison has the jury watch the Zapruder film I flinch when Kennedy is shot and ultimately end up with a few tears rolling down my cheek. When Garrison gives his closing argument I get goosebumbs and those tears come back. Yes, nerdy, but as I think about it and reflect on my own reaction, I can't fathom the reaction a person who actually lived through the Kennedy assassination would have to something that graphic on screen.

My intimate knowledge of the emotion behind Stone's filmmaking is what keeps me from seeing this latest film about two survivors of 9/11, their stories, and their families. I was alive for 9/11. I can remember clearly that morning. Walking to the bus stop, not watching CNN before school for the first time in years, going to art class and watching as the second tower fell. I fear the emotions that Stone might bring with his brilliant film making. This isn't like the distance between myself and Jim Garrison--here is a situation that I lived through, watching carefully, and wondering what would come in the days that followed 9/11.

Before I had always found it silly that there were so many assumed connections between the memories of 9/11, the Kennedy assassination, and Pearl Harbor. Oliver Stone has made me think otherwise.

School's Out For Summer

Today I took my final exam for the Cold War History independent study I've been working on for the majority of the summer. I was freaking out this morning because I thought there would be an essay question about Jimmy Carter (I know very little about the Carter administration), but I lucked out with a question about the successes and failures of the Clinton administration. All in all it wasn't half bad.

Tomorrow morning I'm headed to Declo, then Twin Falls, then back again. Thursday I will be to Salt Lake and back. And Friday I'm to Declo again.

School needs to start soon before I have to get my oil changed again!

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Smorgasbord Saturday

Swan Lake is quite small. All my life I've heard of this place called Swan Lake, but I'd never seen it, or if I had, I must have blinked and missed it. Early this morning, at an ungodly hour when even people on the east coast were probably still asleep, I drove to Preston, Idaho. There is a store and like 3 houses in Swan Lake. It is so bizarre! Talk about small town Idaho. (It's comments like this that require the title of these posts to be "Smorgasbord Saturday!")

I've been on this strange country music kick lately. Not too sure why, but as the kick continues, I have run across an interesting little song by a guy named Rodney Atkins. I believe the title is "If You're Going Through Hell." Anyway, I think the song is kind of catchy--in that country/pop sort of way and says just what people like me who have had the kind of summer I have had need to hear. For a song with a title like this, it is oddly peppy and encouraging.

Another random thought about Idaho, or in this case Idaho billboards, as I was driving back from Preston this afternoon (somewhere between Preston and my grandparents' house in McCammon) there was this billboard with a lady lying in a bed with a really fluffy pillow that said "Sleep in Pocatello, Only 30 Minutes." I laughed. Now I know that the billboard meant that it was only 30 minutes to Pocatello and travelers should stop in Pocatello to sleep for the night, but I thought it was the story of my life...I sleep at best 30 minutes at a time in Pocatello, so why not ask everyone on the interstate to try it out? I guess you had to be there...

In my spare time, also known as the time in which I can't seem to sleep, I have been watching a lot of those forensic science, criminology-type shows. CSI, Criminal Minds, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and others top the list, but the other night I was watching an episode of CSI (the Las Vegas one) and it was about a body the investigators found that they knew was a man with Down Syndrome. Now, I have a very soft spot for people with Down Syndrome so it was no surprise that I found it particularly infuriating that this young man was killed by a guy he worked with at a ranch, but the highlight of the entire show was after the murderer who had referred to his victim as "The Retard" was told by Grissom: "By the way, the definition of retard is to hinder or hold something back. I think your life is about to be retarded." Another one of those I guess you had to be there comments.

Last is something a little more like what Orson Scott Card would do over on his review site, but I'm doing it anyway--I have discovered this great cranberry juice. It should be known that I HATE cranberry juice. I hate with every ounce of hatred in me. I hate it with as much passion as I hate Barry Goldwater or those damn magnetic ribbons people put on their vehicles sporting whatever "trendy" political statement the owner has chosen. The juice is called Naturally Preferred Cranberry Blend and it is distributed by Inter-American Products out of Ohio. It is 100% juice with no added sweetener. It is a perfect balance of cranberry, apple, and grape juice. Now instead of the 4 ounces of straight 100% cranberry juice without the added benefit of sugar that I used to swallow like most people swallow a shot of tequila, I can enjoy easily 8 ounces of juice without thinking about how absolutely awful cranberry juice is. And it is wonderful for kidney health. Try it. Now part of my morning routine of corn flakes is a glass of cranberry juice. Decent cranberry juice.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Holy Sweetness!

I now own the coolest book ever...

"Idaho Voting Trends Party Realignment and Percentage of Votes for Candidates, Parties, and Elections 1890-1974"

Yep, I'm officially a nerd.

Wednesday, August 9, 2006

An Affair to Remember

**Editor's Note: For those who care to know it was on this day in history that the 37th President of the United States left the oval office. Long live the memory of Tricky Dick!

I have loved Senator Joe Lieberman since I was seven years old. Yes, seven. For fourteen years I have supported Lieberman's candidacy for the U.S. Senate, Vice Presidency, and Presidency, but today I have to say is the end of the road for me. I can no longer support Joe Lieberman.

As Johnson once said about losing Cronkite in regard to support for Vietnam, we could logically say if Lieberman has lost me he has lost the American public...maybe. Actually, I don't see any reason why a large number of Connecticut Republicans couldn't vote for Lieberman and a large number of faithful Lieberman supporters (including Dodd) couldn't continue their support of Lieberman, thus splitting the ticket quite evenly between the Republican nominee, Democratic nominee, and the now Independent candidate Lieberman.

Regardless, Lieberman has lost one loyal and nearly lifelong supporter today--me. If I could ask him just one question I would ask how he can support unjustified war where brutality is reality and death an hourly occurrence, but he put his foot down when it came to kids in their own homes playing those virtual games that killed people just as graphically? And if I could say to him that he is no Jim Jeffords or Bernie Sanders, I would.

Tuesday, August 8, 2006

Milestones

Friday marked the 2 year anniversary of The Political Game and tomorrow marks the 2 year anniversary of what has become one of my favorite components of this blog, This Day In History.

When you're young, time generally passes slowly, but as I look back over the past two years I wonder where the time has gone. I am two years older, two years wiser (I hope), and two years closer to my degree in History.

There have been those times of complete disinterest in the game and times where I felt like this blog was nothing more than an outlet for me and ammunition for the rest of the world. But I have come to appreciate the blog for that outlet as well as for the people it has allowed me to meet. In the blogosphere, I can think of no other state I would rather find myself blogging in. Idaho is perfect in this respect (and many others).

Friday, August 4, 2006

Still Not Dead

Flowers that were planted at the beginning of the summer are still not dead...


...this has to be some sort of miracle because I can't keep plants, fish, or anything else alive!

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

Life Ain't Always Beautiful

As grammatically incorrect as this song is, I love it. I have listened to it on repeat since I FINALLY purchased the Gary Allan CD and I just can't seem to get it out of my head--which is just fine with me.
Life Ain't Always Beautiful
Performed by Gary Allan
Written by Cyndi Goodman & Tommy Lee James

Life ain't always beautiful
Sometimes it's just plain hard
Life can knock you down, it can break your heart

Life ain't always beautiful
You think you're on your way
And it's just a dead end road at the end of the day

But the struggles make you stronger
And the changes make you wise
And happiness has its own way of takin it's sweet time

No, life ain't always beautiful
Tears will fall sometimes
Life aint always beautiful
But it's a beautiful ride

Life ain't always beautiful
Some days I miss your smile
I get tired of walkin all these lonely miles

And I wish for just one minute
I could see your pretty face
Guess I can dream, but life don’t work that way

But the struggles make me stronger
And the changes make me wise
And happiness has its own way of takin it's sweet time

No, life ain't always beautiful
But i know i'll be fine
Hey, life ain't always beautiful
But it's a beautiful ride
What a beautiful ride

It probably is some sort of sign that I'm posting lyrics today and was making pancakes at 5:30 in the morning!