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:: Friday, November 07, 2003 ::

1984 University

There was a 'racial' episode at Emory University in Atlanta. Are the details important? Not particularly. Someone said something. Someone was offended.

Everyone should know by now that saying something that might in some way at some time offend someone else is WRONG! EVIL! BAD! DANGEROUS! And should be a felony resulting in death. Oh wait...capital punishment is WRONG! EVIL! BAD! DANGEROUS!

You get the point.

The scary part of this current 'incident'?

Nagueyalti Warren is chairwoman of Emory's Presidential Commission on the Status of Minorities and associate dean for the undergraduate college.

(side note: as of the latest census, to the best of my recollection, 'minorities' were more than 50% of the population of California. Therefore the truest minority in California is 'Caucasian'. And, since women outnumber men, the largest minority in California is 'White Men.' Was anything in that sentence racist?)

This is what Nagueyalti Warren had to say in regards to this 'incident':

"In a Nov. 3 letter to Wagner (ed: President of Emory), the commission said it wants Emory to...require all students, faculty and staff members to get "diversity certification."
Warren said her commission thinks that racial problems are systemic at Emory and that action should go beyond the anthropology department.
"The whole community needs to come together and air these issues," she said. "It's at the student level. It's at the faculty level. The climate is not good at this point."
Past efforts to confront racial and other diversity issues, such as the Year of Reconciliation, have been inadequate, she said.
"People could come if they wanted to," Warren said about the earlier year. "What we're suggesting is mandatory.""

Yes, 'mandatory' 'diversity certification.'

Those words should send chills down the spine of every free thinking individual.

:: Peter 11/07/2003 02:37:00 PM [+] ::

XMas shopping for dog lovers

For that special person who already has everything else:

"2004 Monthly Doos Dog Poop Calendar...celebrates dog doo in all its glory. Dog doo in lush scenes photographed with loving care."

There are sample images too, but since they're copyrighted you'll have to click on this to see them.

Of course, if you've already got a calendar but still need that finishing touch to the tree, you can also order:

"Yule Doos Ornament...Hang a very special Yule Doo on your tree this Christmas...Made of simulated dog doo with simulated snow."

Because nothing says Merry Christmas like hanging 'simulated dog doo' on that artificial tree.

:: Peter 11/07/2003 02:06:00 PM [+] ::
:: Thursday, November 06, 2003 ::

Average Joe

How quickly are they doing this show? Commercial last night said they were cutting 6 of the current 12 'Joes' on Monday's episode. Well, that was fast.

But not what I wanted to talk about.

Watched Smallville (not that I ever miss it) last night. Well done for what had appeared to be a cheesy concept.

Not what I wanted to talk about.

I'd vote for Zell Miller for anything. From local councilpersonagetype to President. And everything in between. He might be a DINO (Dem. in name only) but he's what politicians should be. He'd make a great VP candidate (for either party) next year. I fully expect 2008 to be Rice v. Clinton. But wouldn't it make for great political theater for Bush to tab Miller as the VP if Cheney decides to step down for 2004? Not going to happen, but fun to contemplate.

Not what I wanted to talk about.

Which brings us to my mother-in-law. Say what? You're probably asking. For my birthday my mother-in-law posted on her blog about me. It's remarkable. She's raised a wonderful daughter. Has actually raised 4 wonderful daughters but obviously I concern myself with the eldest of them.

So, forthwith, a thank you. To my mother-in-law. For Anna. For raising her and, of course, for letting her go. It's difficult to have a daughter move 1000 miles away. Thank you.

:: Peter 11/06/2003 06:36:00 PM [+] ::
:: Wednesday, November 05, 2003 ::


Andy will turn 4 and a half on Saturday. Going on 22. The other day he was in his room playing on his computer (no internet access, thank you very much...). He's the world's worst loser. Loathes it. Hates it. Hell, he's so competitive that he throws a fit when his team wins if he's not the one who scores. Anyway. He was playing on his computer and he lost. I've grown accustomed to him slapping his hand down on the desk in frustration at losing (not happy he does it but I understand the reasoning). However, this time he added to the slap with a resounding, loud, determined "Damn!"

Ok, everyone swears. And children are miniature sponges absorbing everything they hear. And, realistically, swearing will not seriously limit his career choices twenty years from now. But, like certain other activities, it's best done in the privacy of his own home. In other words: No swearing in public, specifically school.

But, to be honest, it doesn't concern me too much. Not in perspective at least. His mother and I curse, too much sometimes, so it's not surprising.

There is, however, something which concerns me. His new pet phrase. Which he totes out like a safety blanket at the slightest task, whether it's eating dinner, getting dressed, taking a bath, brushing his teeth, cleaning his room, or anything else he doesn't want to do: "It's too hard."

This concerns me. I've been making a concerted effort lately to impress upon him that NOTHING is 'too hard.' That he can do anything he wants to do.

Is it helping? Not yet. Everything is still, to him, when he doesn't want to do something, 'too hard.'

I understand the swearing, where it originates, what it implies. The 'it's too hard' however makes little sense. Unless it's just one more thing he's learned in his first year of public education. Along with the difference between white and 'brown' children. And other things he didn't need to ever know.

And he's only in Pre-K.

"It's too hard." Well, damn, nothing's ever too hard.
:: Peter 11/05/2003 12:51:00 PM [+] ::
:: Tuesday, November 04, 2003 ::

Mea Culpa...

This blog is not my life. Not to say it's not important, in some small way. But the yearning for 'hits' and the constant Site Meter checks aren't the raison d'etre they are for some. This blog has never really found it's voice, there's been so many different thematic directions which have resulted in countless hundreds of visitors from various Google (and other search engine) searches that it's become sort of a private joke. Just today visitors have found this site via searches on 'Israelis are too nice,' 'history of doorbell,' 'what if Gore had won,' and 'applying dog nail polish.'

Over the past few months life has been busy: Josh is fully recovered from his heart surgery and Andy has begun Pre-K and Anna continues her march towards her degree (on pace to graduate with highest honors). And me? Countless rejections from agents (though with numerous 'good' rejections outweighing the bad). The book is still out with 7 publishing houses but I doubt I'll hear anything, good or bad, before 2004.

Two new book ideas are outlining themselves in the back of my mind, one more complete than the other which doesn't have any sort of title and one less complete but slightly more interesting which does. Might or might not actually write either though. Really trying to think of something to write which I'd actually want my children to read since the book I just finished is not for kids.

So, mea culpa, amidst all of this other stuff, the blog has been partially forgotten. Sure, there have been days when I've learned things which necessitate a blog posting but for the most part it's been ignored. It's amusing in a way, since now my wife has her own blog, as do both of my sons, my mother-in-law, my step-father-in-law, and my sister-in-law.

Will this continue? I'm not sure. I'm thinking of completely changing the tenor of the blog and simply trying the stream-of-consciousness blogging thing. Such as this post for example.

Will I keep it up? We'll have to wait and see, I guess.

I'd post about my kids, but my wife does it better than I do.

I'd post about my wife, but she'd kill me (well...maybe just maim me a little...)

What's left?

Today's post concerns: Average Joe.

What, you were expecting an analysis of the collected works of Joseph Conrad?

It premiered last night as the latest 'twist' in the quickly tiring reality show pantheon. And I liked this twist. Never watched Survivor, missed the first season of American Idol, and didn't miss either. But I decided to watch this one because I thought the premise held promise. The premise is simple: 1 beautiful woman agrees to be what amounts to 'The Bachlorette' but then discovers that her choice of 16 bachelors is not out of the latest Abecrombie catalog. More like the latest Jim Belushi Fan Club. Not that all 16 were out of shape or unattractive or pathetic. Just that appearance was definitely secondary for these men. Or tertiary. Or lower. Just like most of the rest of America.

And because of that, when she (Malana, though I doubt I'm spelling that correctly) cut 4 men last night, I actually felt for them. I could relate to them. I understood how they must be feeling. Especially since I have a feeling (strengthened by the disclaimer quickly flashed on the screen when the credits rolled that not only was it edited (duh...) but that 'certain contestants had asked producers for assistance' (or something to that affect)) Malana had some cuts suggested to her by the aforementioned producers. As in Zach, the 'ass' (aka 'typical New Yorker' who is always a contestant on these things...there's always one), probably would have been cut but he provides a lot of dramatic tension so I can see the producers wanting to keep him around. And Tareq (again, can't remember the spelling) was kept even though he actually asked Malana about broccoli (kept for 'diversity' since he was the only non-caucasion present).

Who was cut? Wally should have been kept. The others made sense, even if it was sad to see them go.

But they began the night by having a typical 'hunk' deke Malana. Why is this important? Because Malana made it apparent (probably coached) that she found typical 'hunk' attractive and she expressed (probably coached) disappointment when he told her he wasn't staying. Again, why is this important? Because the producers keep reminding us of twists in store. And they keep showing clips of some of those twists, or, at least, the responses they engender. Mainly, that when Malana starts to have feelings for what she says is 'four' of the Average Joes, they have a door open, bright light pouring through and then clips of the Average Joes being shocked. I think who is behind that door would be at least one, possibly more, of those typical 'hunks' with the one being the guy in the white limo last night. Why would they do this? To see if she will really stick with personality over looks.

Just a thought.

They do show clips of Malana seriously kissing some of the Average Joes, at least one of whom looked like Zach in the quick cut they provided.

It's going to be fun to watch. And, of course, to post on.

And in case you were wondering, this is hosted by Kathy Griffin. Apparently there must have been something in the water at Suddenly Susan which made NBC decide that former co-stars of Brooke Shields would make good reality show hosts (see also: Factor, Fear with Rogan, Joe).

Favorite sight gag of last nights episode: Is it just me or is Craig's head exactly TWICE the size of Malana's?

:: Peter 11/04/2003 03:01:00 PM [+] ::

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