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Showing posts from April, 2006

Big Brother is watching you: From 35 to 3501

Does it worry anyone else to hear, "The FBI delivered a total of 9,254 NSLs relating to 3,501 people in 2005, according to a report submitted late Friday to Democratic and Republican leaders in the House and Senate." Source: FBI secretly sought data on 3,501 people in ’05: Agency ramped up use of approach that requires no court approval (For context, between November 2003 and April 2005 there were only 35 . That's a 1000% increase . Ten times more . That's a lot. And I'm left wondering...why?) NSLs---for you non-security sorts---are National Security Letters. Just the very name sends me into SS shudders. NSLs allow the executive branch (and whoever else their secret groups allow---or the entire nation should Bush and Cheney decide to allow some patsy to leak secret, confidential information to the tabloids...err, newspapers) to see just exactly what you are up to, via your bank, financial, telephone, Internet and heck, just about anything they can tap into to trac

Very Bad Queen

I never actually watch live TV. It's all TiVO. So today, I was two weeks behind on American Idol. I watched the Queen Theme episode. It's possible that the performances were okay. From where I sat it was an utter disaster. I think Katharine McPhee has a lovely voice but I cringed all the way through her rendition of "Who Wants to Live Forever." I did thank whatever common sense gods convinced Taylor to not sing "We Are the Champions." I admit, I haven't heard any of the covers of Queen out there on the tribute albums, and I have even avoided Sarah Brightman singing "Who Wants to Live Forever," although with her classical training and performance experience I imagine she gets it a little better than the average singer. Queen is not simply a band, and Freddie Mercury is not simply a singer. They are not simply rock stars. Or were, in the case of Freddie Mercury. They were much more performers . Their music more rock opera in most cases than jus

Good luck, Gardenia

The gardenias---lovely, secret love, joy, sweet love, good luck---grow next to the oleanders---caution---in my garden. They aren't overshadowed by the periwinkles---friendship---which grow in colorful profusion around the door we most often come in and out. The pansies are right next to them, an unintended reflection that we often think of friendship, first. I would like to add in some peonies, but I'm not sure how to juxtapose bashfulness, shame, happy life, happy marriage, good health, and prosperity. Would they work best in front of gardenias? "Good luck, happy life, and much joy in marriage, good health and prosperity to you." We hide the hibiscus in the back. The plumeria covers the ground next to it, and past that, more oleanders, pink and white. The color is a random contrast of bright red, soft yet bright blue and pink and white. They do more than look pretty; they speak beautifully too. The sentence the flowers write is, "Delicate beauty, I miss you, wit

Little sacrifices...and bigger ones...every day...

I heard a statement the other day, and it was one of those "WOW light bulb oooh resonates" moments. The statement was, "There was no good choice in the moment. There were too many factors, too many things you couldn't know or control. You had to make a choice. And you did. But there was no good choice; every choice involved a sacrifice." Nobody needs to tell me that life requires a tremendous amount of balance and compromise. I'm not talking about balance and compromise. I'm talking about sacrifice. Not Sophie's Choice level. But intense at times, less so at others, but all around, more a feeling of sacrifice than compromise. A feeling that there is no schedule juggling "this at 1:00, that at 2:00, everyone gets a turn and it all works out with a little balance and compromise." A feeling that it all must be in this moment, now, and you can't do it all so you have to choose, sacrifice. Do you know what I all? The first person

In her her her words...

What does this face say to you? Here's what this face, regularly, says to me: Her: You're a mean girl. Me: How so? Her: You. Just. Are. Me...raised eyebrows. Her: A MEAN MEAN girl. Me: Is this about the chocolate? Is this about me not letting you eat the chocolate for lunch? Her: HUMPH! Me: Or maybe it's the new toy. I said I was not going to go to the store and get a new toy for you today. Her...jaw juts out, bottom lip hardens. Me: Or maybe it's because I told you to clean up your toys. Her: MEAN! Me..arms waving: Someone call CPS, vicious mom, cruel parenting, abuse abuse! A mother making her child clean up her toys! Unheard of! Her: It's too much for me. I'm too tired. Me: Maybe we need to take away the toys, maybe you have too many. Point out the ones you want to keep and I'll put away the rest. Her: Moooooooommmmmm, I don't like those words! You're a rude mean girl! Me: Toys need to be put away. Her: I a minute...I'm playing now.

The Dumbest Question in the World, Bar None, Hands Down, Ever

Okay perhaps that is a slight exagerration. There are--despite rumors, assertions, and validation to the contrary---an awful lot of stupid questions. "Do you support Bush?" That's a good example. But in this case, potshots aside, I'm talking about myself. Hands down, the dumbest things I've ever said have come in the course of Parenting. Let's set the scene. Picture me speaking to a cute little kid who happens to be my daughter. If you have trouble visualizing, use the cartoons below, last entry. It's pretty cartoonish when this happens, and I often have Looney Tunes going through my head anyway (in these cases) so it works well. Now you, you look at this kid and this one case and you think, awww chill out lady, she's basically a good kid. Why the mottled spit in the corner of your mouth, the flashing eyes, the horns erupting from your skull (although, it does add a nice bit of volume to your hair)? Break it down, understand, figure out why, and redire on South Park...heh heh heh heh

So this is me...if I were on South Park. Too funny. My daughter did one too. This is her: I must find a way to use this. I might have a new what-do-you-call-it. The thingie next to my name. I'm having way too much fun on this site: South Park Studio. By Julie Pippert Artful Media Group Museum Quality Digital Art and Photography Limited Edition Prints Artful by Nature Fine Art and Photography Galleries The Golden Orchid: Original and Unique Wearable Art © 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.