Wednesday, September 22, 2004

You have to understand what I live with.

Ruby wakes up and says: "I dreamed we went to Halloween town. It was the first time we'd had fun in years. We dropped the baby off with a claymation baby sitter.

We were in this bar made of candy, and the bartender said: You have to rate my bar, otherwise people will eat it.

I said to you: We have to come back, but you said, "Nah, not enough strippers. And then I looked at the table, and there were all these gingerbread men, and they were peeling off their icing."

So, what role do I play in the private universe in her head, now? Dream interpretation, anybody?

In other news, I am so not feeling like a nice man today.

Poppy can handle a sandwich. I remember when she couldn't. She would pick it apart, but now she can fist it into her face pretty well. That is so cool. She can say Blue instead of Boo. She knows when I'm going to work (shoes and tie give it away, I imagine). "Work?" She says, and then wrinkles her face up in that parody of anxiety. Her brain is like a little octopus, reaching in all directions.

Reading: Hogfather,by Terry Pratchett. Ruby says this isn't her favorite, and I've seen at least one review that said it was pretty bad. But: Santa Clause gets killed, and Death has to take over his rounds. What's not to like? I am enjoying it.

Sunday, September 12, 2004


Ann Coulter is writing another book, titled How to speak to Liberals (If you really must). The title sort of negates itself, doesn't it? The thing is, we really don't want to talk to Ann.

I took a look around the internet, looking for some advanced press. What I found was a column from 2001 with a similar title, wherein she moons over George. "George knows how to talk to liberals." I paraphrase. "You have to talk to them like children."

You have to do this, of course, because liberals don't understand that conservatives aren't mean. She goes on about how cheerful Pat Robertson is with a kind of obtuse literalism that entirely misses the point. I mean, Al Franken smiles, too.

Of the whining conservatives do about what a persecuted minority they are, the lip-trembling "they think we're mean" argument has always been the most obfuscating. It really should be the least thing to come out of the culture wars, but they can't get over it.

The thing is, of course conservatives are mean. It's an easy generalization to make. Ann personally revels in it, along with Rush. O'Reilly bellyaches about being called mean while shouting down guests on his show. They invalidate the statement "conservatives are nice," and by continuing to argue gross generalities, disallow a more precise critique of the issue. Sure, Pat Robertson is jovial. And, he's mean.

If there's someone to fight the stereotype of the mean conservative, it isn't Ann. She doesn't even know what level of rhetoric the conversation is being had on. Someone who thinks that anybody left of Pat Robertson is a traitor is the kind of a person who takes every disagreement personally. It's a kind of Broadway musical martyr complex, sort of like "don't cry for me, liberal media. The truth is, I never liked you." She's drunk on the force of her own conviction and crying in the fermented remains of her persecution complex.

Ann. Your mascara will run.

Reading: Reaper Man. Now, Terry Pratchett is funny, and curiously sweet even when skewering the fatuous. I would pay to hear his comments on politics any day. Reaper Man is the road less taken to Death Takes a Holiday, a story I tend to like however it's redone.

The first four volumes of Lucifer, the Vertigo comic, which take's Neil Gaiman's clever turn on Milton's fallen angel and runs it down the road less taken to Paradise Lost. I preferred Steven Brust's To Reign in Hell. Volume three offers my favorite couple of issues so far, when Lucifer says to the angel who's invaded Lucifer's garden of Eden and corrupted Lucifer's Adam and Eve: "After all, any prototype that can't resist the old celestial party line isn't worth the effort of mass production, is it?" Heh.