Friday, November 13, 2009

Lookin’ good, Feelin’ good!

Health and wellness This morning I drove up to Ken's office building for a health and wellness assessment (and a seasonal flu shot). It's a great incentive plan for employees and spouses, encouraging them to eat healthier and exercise more. What are the incentives? Cold, hard cash, baby! If we complete our goals, we get a nice little gift, and this year they've added credit on insurance. I think companies should really start going that route, because it ends up being a win-win situation. The company possibly pays out less for insurance benefits, and the employee gets healthier!

The morning didn't start out well, since I had to get up at 8-friggin'-o'clock! [ducking a shoe] Hey, who threw that? No, it was fine, and I even got up before my alarm went off. Spent a little time on teh Webs, got cleaned up, and headed out. Always great to crank up the tunes (Dandy Warhols today) and hit the highway. The speed limit goes up to 70 mph in Michigan, so that was even better! (And yes, there were a couple of times that I shouted at people to get out of my way...although it was a little stronger than that. The speed limit is 70 and you're going 60? You're toast.)

I was curious to see what my results would be compared to last year. I had a checkup this summer at my regular doctor's, and didn't hear any bad news about those results, so I figured things must be okay. However, I hopped off of the workout wagon this summer, and I know that is a problem, one that I need to rectify.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that my results were better than last year! I don't have that information handy, but it appears that I'm not getting older...I'm getting better! Yeah baby! I still have some things I need to work on, though.

Woman lifting weights They classified my blood pressure as "pre-hypertension," but I think that's misleading. I was at 126/80, and that's really pretty good, especially for me. (Quitting smoking worked wonders.) Surprisingly, I didn't grow any taller...they measured me at five feet. ::sigh:: I keep wondering when I'll hit my growth spurt, but it hasn't happened yet. I was very pleased with my weight. I know I've been naturally eating less lately, and it showed me as dropping 6 pounds from this summer. Hot diggity damn! My Body Mass Index is about 21.75, which is considered desirable, but my Body Composition, i.e. body fat, is at 33.3%, which is...POOR. Damn! Time to hit the weights. Yeah, that’ll be me, power lifting. Heehee.

My cholesterol is is a little high, but my HDL, the good stuff, is really high, on the level of someone who works out for several hours a day. Thanks, Mom and Dad, for the good genes! My ratio is really good, but I want to improve on these numbers. My bone density is also low, which I knew. I will be checking the wellness website this weekend, and formulating a plan for a workout regimen.

I found it really encouraging to have dropped a few pounds, and feel motivated to get back to work, especially as winter sets in. Who is with me? We can encourage each other, cheer our successes, and help each other with our (temporary) failures. I don't know about you guys, but I want to tighten up, and I am ready to pump some iron! C'mon, who's with me?! Yeahhhh! [running out of the room]

Hello? Anyone?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Candy-coated with an ugly nougat center

I'm sure a lot of you have seen this already. It's all over Facebook, where I posted it earlier today. I believe I saw it first on Bob's blog, so thanks Bob. Oh, and Hi Bob! [sip]

I'm no fan of Larry King. I find his interviews boring and ass-kissing. But I really enjoyed this despite it pissing me off so much, because his fairly innocuous question simply highlighted this woman's idiocy. To briefly summarize the whole thing, Carrie Prejean was Miss California in some beauty pageant--Miss U.S.A? Miss America?--who gives a fuck? Perez Hilton, one of the judges and an incredibly annoying person, asked her how she felt about gay marriage. Her answer was that she feels that marriage should be between a man and a woman, sorry, but that's how she was raised. When she came in runner-up, instead of just keeping her yap shut she decided that she didn't win because of her religious views and went around telling everyone about how poorly she'd been treated, blah di blah blah.

When the California pageant stripped her of her title of Miss California because of breach of contract (she didn't show for appearances, difficult to work with, that sort of thing), she decided to slap them with a libel lawsuit for discrimination over her religious views. That suit came to a screeching halt last week when her solo sex tape surfaced, and she settled out of court.

Carrie PrejeanHer refusal to talk about any of that is ridiculous. King wasn't asking her for details of the settlement, and I'm quite certain that there was nothing to prohibit her from speaking about the situation in general terms. I read somewhere (I don't have the source, so can't verify it) that they played the tape for her in a private meeting. As the camera showed the woman's body, she said, "That's disgusting." As it panned up her body to show her own face, I'm certain she had quite an epiphany. Perhaps something along the lines of "Holy shit, I'm screwed." (I take it back: here is the TMZ bit about Prejean's reaction.)

You see, Carrie, your incredible self-righteous priggishness, which is apparently coupled with feelings of self-loathing for your own body, has been outed. You would deny marriage to people who love each other because of your own narrow-minded prejudicial religion, despite the institute of marriage having absolutely nothing to do with religion. Your religion also says that self-pleasure is a sin, and from what I hear, you were sinnin' pretty good in that video you made for your boyfriend. Gee, I wonder if you had sexual relations with him before marriage? Because your religion also says that is a sin. Wow, you're just full of sin, aren't you, Carrie?

This sort of hypocritical nonsense makes me want to projectile vomit. You live your life parading your body in beauty pageants; in order to do better in them, you have your breasts augmented, paid for by the California pageant; when you are called out because of ugly remarks you made concerning your feelings about matters of love, you bat your eyes and cry that you are being discriminated against because of your religion. No one is doing that, Carrie. You believe whatever the hell you want to believe. It's the hypocrisy that disgusts me. But if you want to talk discrimination, talk to the millions of gays across this country who cannot marry the person they love because people like you aren't enlightened enough to understand that it is not about religion! It is about civil rights and what is so fucking hard to understand about that?!

::pant pant pant::

I find this woman an insult. I believe she is an insult to thinking women everywhere. It's one thing to be pretty. I'm not chopped liver, and I'd be lying if I said it hadn't opened certain doors for me. However, at the end of the day, when the rubber meets the road, when the bullet hits the bone, you'd better have something to back it up. If that door opens for you, you can't just stand there and look pretty, give everyone a wink, and expect them to take you seriously. It's not surprising to me that her hero is Sarah Palin, who tried her best to wink her way to the White House, despite a complete and utter lack of qualifications or even enough intelligence to obtain those qualifications, not to mention lacking enough gumption to stick around and do the work necessary to learn about how things work or how to be diplomatic. What kind of person has Sarah Palin as a hero?

Headless Barbie People like Carrie Prejean, that's who. A vapid bimbette without enough intelligence to successfully promote her book on Larry King Live. Do you think anyone is talking about how much they want to read your book, you silly bitch? No, they're talking about what a douche you are, to take off your microphone and sit there pouting like a whiny brat while you get directions from whatever manager is pulling your strings. I'm surprised you didn't stick your fingers in your ears and shout "Lalalala I can't hear you!" when Larry was trying to talk to you. I'm guessing your manager reminded you that you were there to promote a book (How long did it take "you" to write it, anyway? Four months like it took Palin to write "her" book?), and you continued the interview. Your petulant, whining manner is matched only by your excessive greed and desire to cash in on your 15 minutes no matter how much you have to whore yourself out to do so, although I can't blame you for trying to cash in anymore than I blame Levi Johnston. If you were really that offended by King's question, go. Get the fuck out. Take a stand. No, you just sat there until someone took pity on you and decided to play nice and back away from any questions that might be upsetting to you.

I find you an embarrassment to my gender. You obviously don't value intelligence, you try to use your looks to get your way, and that is offensive to me. I find you inappropriate. For any of us who have tried to be taken seriously for our education or intelligence, who have dealt with harassment issues, who have had to put up with that glimmer in an eye when we're trying to speak seriously about a subject, you are not helping. You seem to believe that a wink and a smile will get you everywhere you need to go. You are the living embodiment of that old joke about a woman being a life support system for a certain body part.

How many times do I have to say it? Smart is the new sexy. You may be pretty on the outside, Carrie, but on the inside, you are one fucking ugly woman.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Logan’s Run

Shane and Beth3 Today I met up with Cousin Shane and his friend Matt at Logan's Steakhouse. It's been a little while since I'd seen Shane, and although Matt and I are Facebook friends (through Shane), I hadn't met him yet. We all had a really nice chat and a good time, and I really enjoyed meeting Matt! I was about five minutes late, and Shane told me that as I walked up, he said to Matt, "Cool, she's got the Deborah Harry look goin' on." Haha! (Shane has always said that I look like Deborah Harry in "The Hardest Part" video. Brunette wig. Her, not me.)

We had a lively talk about politics and health care reform. Yes, I know that is a shocker. I told Matt, "I don't know if you've read my blog, but I'm a tiny bit interested in politics." Shane and I laughed, and yes, Matt said he has read it and knows. After a nice lunch (I always love sitting in the corner booth!) and getting caught up, we drove over to check out the house that Shane is interested in. It looks like a neat place, with lots more room than he has now. It's a 60's-era ranch, and we talked about how we both love that style of house, like the ranches designed by Joseph Eichler. (Frank Lloyd Wright also did a mean ranch house, of course, but his were pretty upscale--Eichler was more affordable and mainstream.) We aren't sure if it's because of good childhood memories, or perhaps it's the Brady Bunch Effect. The Brady house, although not a ranch, was pretty awesome, especially when Greg got his own groovy pad up in the attic.

But I digress.

Hey, what is up with my bangs? I don't care what I do with them, those sonsabitches just do what they want. They flip up on the sides, they form strange hieroglyphics, they sass me and tell me they're the boss. Sometimes I hate them, but I can't imagine life without them. Bangs...can't live with 'em, can't cut the bitches. Well, okay, I guess you can. I do it all the time.

It was fun to get together, and I look forward to future outings. It's always fun to do lunch, especially to get a chance to see Shane. I had! quadruple the fun today!

Oh, and remember...nobody puts Baby in a corner. Unless it's a corner booth.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

This is my Congressman

I got this email tonight.

Hello Friends,

On Saturday night, I joined the House in passing America’s Affordable Health Choices Act. This bill will not only make health care more affordable for those who already have it, but it will also ensure that those who cannot afford health insurance are able to obtain it. It also will not add to the national debt, a factor that played a large role in my vote.

As you may know, the road to passing this bill was long and at times contentious. For the past several months, I have traveled the district hearing from and listening to the people I represent. I have encountered many who either cannot afford health insurance or were denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions.

After many discussions and debates, I voted for what I believed would be most beneficial to the people of north central Indiana. However, as soon as my vote was made, the attacks began. They attacked with gusto, but failed to provide any positive answers: nothing about care for pre-existing conditions, no suggestions for more affordable or available care, and no plan to significantly reduce the deficit. Additionally, my potential opponent, State Rep. Jackie Walorski, simply parroted these same worn-out attacks as loudly as she could.

Even though I knew these attacks would occur, I also knew I had to do what’s right for families here in Indiana and across the country. And though the bill is not perfect, I promise to keep working hard to make it better.

Please help by making a contribution of $25, $50, $100 or any other amount to my campaign right now.

Thank you for all of your hard work, your time, and your support. I look forward to continuing my work as your Representative.


Congressman Joe Donnelly


I'm telling you, I love this guy.

Not only did he do what he felt was right, he mentioned the nutball Jackie Walorski that I have written about before! I laughed out loud when I saw that! I have a note to myself to write him a thank you note, and you can bet I will be doing that. I also love his point about how although people started attacking him, they had no real solutions of their own. That certainly seems to be par for the course lately. And Joe, I can't contribute a lot to your campaign, but you can bet I'll be contributing something. You are doing a great job, and I want you to keep on doing it. I foresee some volunteering in my future, too, because I feel very fortunate to have what seems to be a really decent guy as my representative. I don't take that for granted, believe me.

I was having a good day, anyway. This sealed the deal. Tomorrow is lunch with Cousin Shane, and I anticipate another fun day!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Got Balls?

Joseph Cao This guy does. Meet Anh "Joseph" Cao, the Lone Republican (hi-yo, Silver!) to vote for the health care bill that just passed in the House.

I was happy to become a fan on his Facebook page and leave him a supportive comment, thanking him for his vote. Of course, others in his own party are telling him to get out, go join the Democrats, calling him un-American, blah di blah blah. Again...that is some brilliant strategizin' right there. Drive someone out of the party because they have the courage to stand up for what they believe in, and work with others to actually get something done in this country, something that has been way too fucking long in coming. Just like the New York congressional race in which far right conservatives forced a moderate Republican out, resulting in a Democrat winning the seat. Somehow they don't seem to be grasping the extremely simple concept here that the majority in this country do want health care reform, and they do not agree with the narrow, restrictive, moralistic lines that are being drawn in the sand. Are we back to the culture wars? After all these years? Really, teabaggers? Really?

So why did Louisiana Congressman Cao vote the way he did?

I read the versions of the House [health reform] bill. I listened to the countless stories of Orleans and Jefferson Parish citizens whose health care costs are exploding – if they are able to obtain health care at all. Louisianans needs real options for primary care, for mental health care, and for expanded health care for seniors and children . . . I have always said that I would put aside partisan wrangling to do the business of the people. My vote tonight was based on my priority of doing what is best for my constituents.

I give you a standing O for that, Congressman, and I applaud you for listening to your constituents. I am reminded of the meeting I attended with my Congressman, Joe Donnelly. A woman in the audience was hectoring him, trying to get a commitment from him that he would not vote for any bill that included federal funding for abortions. Donnelly is Catholic, consistently pro-life, and I believe all of his votes have gone that way. I don't agree with him on that, but overall, I think he's a great guy who really cares and really listens to his constituents. The woman wouldn't shut up about it, and he finally said, "Ma'am, I'm not here to satisfy you, I'm here to do what is best for the United States of America."

Courage penguin I loved Donnelly for having the courage to say that, and I'm impressed that Congressman Cao also stood up for his principles to cast a vote that moves us closer to ensuring that all of our citizens are able to afford care. This bill is not perfect, and there is still work to be done. Although it is watered down, and it's got that Stupak Amendment in there, my personal opinion is that we need to do what we need to do to get this thing passed. Now is the time, and I for one am fed up with the automatic gainsaying of the GOP, immediately dismissing something that I totally believe is the morally right thing to do. The bill they introduced was ludicrous, although if there is some tort reform in there, I would be okay with that...although it really does nothing to insure more or bring down costs. Just ask Texas.

Oh, and while I was getting all indignant about this, really ramping up the Beth-O-Meter, the phone rang. The woman identified herself as from the Indiana Republican Party. My response? "Oh really?! That's interesting, because we do not support you any longer! Please take us off your list. Thank you!" This has to be at least the third time that I've said to quit calling us, and someone is on the verge of getting an ass-chewing. I don't want to be like that, because I've made phone calls for Organizing For America and I know that it would make me feel bad if someone went off on me. But I am just so frustrated with what I'm hearing and seeing from the GOP that I think I might not be very...empathetic if they keep calling.

Like The Hulk said, "You wouldn't like me when I get angry."

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Cheer for the Irish, you will!

ND Yoda We headed up to Notre Dame yesterday morning for the Navy game. The ND-Navy game is a longstanding tradition, with plenty of mutual respect. It's always fun when the Midshipmen come to town.

What a glorious day for a game! It got up close to almost 70°, with a clear blue sky. A little on the windy side, but for Indiana in November? You couldn't ask for a better day. We met up with a guy that Ken works with, the guy who gets us tickets for various games. Randy told us not to worry about bringing anything, but we took a few beers along for the walk to campus. When he met up with us, he started setting up tables, and had sandwiches, munchies, brownies, a cooler full of beer and one full of soda. What a spread! I want to get his address so I can send him and his wife a thank you note. It was incredible!

Lots of people showed up for Randy's tailgate--I'd say a couple of dozen. His wife didn't come, because she doesn't like sports at all, but she got all the food and made a bunch of stuff. He said something about how if you don't have someone like me who loves sports, it's good to have someone that doesn't mind making the food. Ha! I got to talk to some interesting people. There was a guy who is a bigwig at the company, and went to the Naval Academy. We were talking about how we don't like watching games around other people...he said, "Yeah, don't call me, don't talk to me, just let me watch this game." I had to laugh, because I've mentioned here that you wouldn't like watching a game with me! I talked to his son, a nice young man going to college, and his friend from Penn State. I talked to a guy who was there with his Dad, a Korean War Navy veteran. We were talking about the military, and my Dad being a WWII veteran, and I gave a "HOO-HA!" The guy said, "Hey, you've got that down!" So I gave another "HOO-HA!" Did I mention that Randy had a cooler full of beer? Haha. Yeah, I was a happy girl by the time we headed out to the stadium! Dozed off in the car on the way home, too. Ha.

Beth PB Well, any of you who are friends on Facebook know that the Irish lost, and I was not a happy camper. But as I wrote over there, you can't hate on the Midshipmen. I noticed plenty of Notre Dame fans congratulating the cadets on their win, shaking their hands, generally being good sports about it all. That is one reason I am proud to be a Notre Dame fan! And wow, everyone was just so happy. Maybe it was the beautiful day, maybe it was the money rolling in because of game day, maybe everyone was just madly in love or had won the lottery...hell if I know, but how fun was it to walk along, smiling and nodding to everyone I passed? "Hey, how ya doin'?" "Go Irish!"

We had great seats in one of the end zones, and got to see #23 Golden Taint Tate (yeah, I went there) catch a touchdown pass right in front of us. Awesome! There was also a scary moment when our quarterback, Jimmy Clausen, got his bell rung, and stayed down way too long. A guy behind me said, "Who cares if we lose the game, just be okay, Jimmy, we can't lose you!" So I am not alone in my rather unhealthy obsession with sports. (My Indianapolis Colts went 8-0 today, by the way. Yeah, baby! Too bad the Super Bowl isn't in Indy this year, because the Colts could very well be going. I'll keep my fingers crossed for their appearance there in 2012, because just like Tom Joad, I'll be there. Ha! I cracked myself up with that one.) And if way too many of these pictures in my slideshow are showing the rear view of the players, I can't be held responsible for the photo ops I was presented. That's just the way it is, folks. Deal. And enjoy.

Here are a couple of videos for you. Pre-game in the stadium (which seats 80,000+), and a slideshow. ::sigh:: I love you, Football. It's a special love, filled with good things like downs and shoulder pads and puke-inducing hits and cradling that ball like a tender li’l babychil'. It's all about good hands and fast legs and a keen eye, a quick mind and an ability to see what's coming, being able to read the defense and adjust accordingly, penetrating and running it up the middle. And it's all so, sooooo good. Yeahhhhh.

I'm sorry...I think I went away for a moment there.

I also wanted to mention how pleased I am that the House passed the health care reform bill. It's not perfect, but it is a good start, and can be tweaked as we move forward. I am thrilled that my Congressman, the Honorable Joe Donnelly, voted "Aye!" I will be sending him a note of thanks and affirmation, and then I'm going to start working on my Senator Evan Bayh. Look out, Evan. Here I come!