Saturday, February 11, 2012

Dinner and a movie

Vintage voteI mentioned the other day that Ken and I were going to the annual Jefferson-Jackson dinner given by the St. Joseph County Democrats. It was worth going to, and I’m glad we did.

A couple of nice women sat next to us, and we enjoyed chatting with them while we waited for the speakers to begin. Unfortunately, the “real” speakers weren’t up just yet. As much as I’m interested in politics, I have little interest for all the minutiae that is involved. There were a few party operatives who spoke, and it was a litany of thanking this and that person, welcoming various groups, that sort of thing. I know they have to do that stuff, but man, it was Snoozeville for a while there.

I have to say that I dislike extreme partisanship on either side of the aisle. I’m obviously quite liberal, but I was bothered by some of the cheap shots taken. The worst one for me was someone speaking derisively about Governor Daniels, calling him that “short guy in the Governor’s mansion.” I guess it’s not THAT horrible of an insult, but as a vertically challenged American, I found it petty and childish.

Ken and I both exchanged glances when one person talked about tradition and following your ancestors in their Democratic ways. I completely disagree with that...think for yourself! If I’d done that, I’d be a staunch conservative, and Ken would still be a Republican rather than an Independent. Whatever you decide you want to be, whatever your feelings on policies, read and learn and come to your own decisions rather than just saying you are what you are because your mommy and daddy were. To me, that’s just lazy.

Finally, we got to the main speakers. Congressman Donnelly wasn’t actually there, but spoke to us in a video. That was a bit disappointing, but he IS a working Congress Critter, so I can forgive him for that. We heard from John Gregg, who is running for Governor against Mike Pence. I like him, and I can’t stand Mike Pence, so that’s an easy choice for me. B. Patrick Bauer, the minority leader in Congress, spoke. He’s from South Bend, and I’ve never been a huge fan, but I give him credit for being a scrappy fighter. I went up to him before everyone started speaking to ask him about SB 89, the stupid creationist bill. Wow, I’m not the only one who is vertically challenged! The guy really isn’t much taller than me. Anyway, I said I’d heard that the bill might be dead. He said, “Oh, it’s so stupid. It’s a stupid bill.” I asked if he thought it was dead in the water, and although he didn’t explicitly confirm that, he didn’t seem to think it had much chance of going any further.

We also heard from Brandon Mullen, who is running for Congress against Jackie Walorski. We were both impressed by him and agreed that he is worth supporting, both with our votes and with what donations we can give. He is an Iraqi war veteran, and seems like a very sharp guy. Finally, our new Mayor, Pete Buttigieg spoke. For someone so young, he does very well in a speech. He sounded seasoned and was very well-spoken. He continues to impress me.

After everyone was done and people were making their way out, we stopped and shook hands with a few of the speakers, said we were happy to support them. I’m glad we went, although it was more of a rallying the troops kind of thing than anything else. I can tell you that if you think Democrats aren’t fired up for the 2012 election, you are quite mistaken. I think it’s going to be quite a year.

Midnight in ParisLast night we headed over to my sister Diana’s house for a small get-together to watch “Midnight In Paris.” Di is a huge Woody Allen fan (her and Tom even got to see Woody play clarinet with his band in New York), and was excited about seeing this movie. Based on what I had read and heard about it, I was excited, too. I’m happy to report that it lived up to expectations, and then some. I just loved this movie, and told Ken I’d like for us to get it, because I’d enjoy watching it again. The shots of Paris were just beautiful, and the literary and artistic legends that Owen Wilson’s character encounters were just so cool. I think all of us that were there are avid readers, and it’s something that Diana and I talk about often. I think Di was in seventh heaven! I recently finished A Farewell to Arms, so I especially liked seeing Hemingway. Dali was also a fun encounter.

It was a very funny and charming movie. I would recommend it to anyone! After the movie, we played some records and danced (Yes, you read that right! Actual records, and actual dancing. We’re all baby boomers, after all.), enjoyed more munchie food, and just generally had a fun time. Thanks to Di and Tom for a really fun evening!

Ken is off on a trip to Syracuse for a week, and I’ll be holding down the fort. It figures that we got a few inches of lake effect snow today, right before he left, but I hope it’s done and I’ll be able to get out later in the week. If not, I’m stocked up on everything, and even thought ahead and got my green peppers late last week to make stuffed peppers tomorrow. (That’s one of my Ken-is-on-a-business-trip dinners, along with eggplant parmigiana, eggplant lasagna, cabbage rolls, and...well, pretty much anything with eggplant, cabbage, or sweet peppers.) On Tuesday, my mother-in-law is coming over, and we’ll go have lunch and then I’ll put some music on her MP3 player. On Wednesday, I’m having dinner with Shane and Matt, and on Thursday, I may be going to a lecture at Notre Dame with Diana (that’s kind of weather dependent, though). I think I’ll manage to keep myself busy and out of trouble!


  1. I do get turned off at cheap shots taken against one's opponent or against the other party. Disagreement with ideas is what it is all about, but the put downs are juvenile.

    Records? Someone still has records?

    As an aside, I saw a video blog of a gentlemen showing a record to his young preteen daughter. Her reaction, "Wow, look at that data disk. It must hold millions of terabytes of songs."

  2. dancing to records- we need to do that in our new place soon!


  3. Wow... your really break out the eggplant when Ken is out of town, don't you. The menu is ringing a bell or two!

    Now I have really slacked off Woody Allen but when I was in my 20's, I loved his films. SD (who recently emailed me with 'thinking about you' thoughts, would go with me to the various festivals and new releases... for some reason, 'Vicky Christina...' was our last one together) and I would have felt right in with the crowd..!

    And I would have listened to your stories about the fundie... I recently watched a Bill Moyers interview of Jonathan Haidt about the discord between the left and the right that I thought was insightful. I plan to watch it again and post my thoughts about it soon... or I should say eventually... this is one of the few times I have had a chance for any 'long form thinking'. Anywho, hope the snow doesn't get too deep... it is said to be warming up here in the next week... a 40 degree day will feel like 60..!

    Take care and be well..!

  4. Fired up is only the half of it! I hope we continue to stoke those fires and get moving. The only way to move this country forward is to do it ourselves. It's quite clear that the Repubs are just not going to help. In fact, they seem hell bent on moving us backwards. Crazy. Maybe we can get some common sense back into our Congress and get us moving towards a government that serves its people, not one that is at the mercy of the highest bidder!

  5. Ironically, I have my eggplant parm in the oven right now! Cooking for one is challenging as there is always too much leftovers but eggplant parm freezes well. I cut up large squares for one and freeze them. Great for another day I don't feel like cooking.

    Hugs, Rose

  6. Glad the house was aired out and not a hint of the nasty peppers!


I'm funny how, I mean funny like I'm a clown, I amuse you?