Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

May you all be safe, sound, and with the ones you love tonight.
Bring on 2010....

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


It's a milestone day here in the Mustang household.

Mustang Girl is going out on her first "official" date. She's gone on group things where boys happen to be present, she's had boyfriends.
This one, though, is smart. He asked MM's permission to take her on a date, as her Christmas present. He even called here yesterday, to discuss the details of it, with ME.
She is clueless as to where they are going, what they are doing. He is even bringing her ROSES.
I find myself giddily excited about this, because, I have not really gotten to experience a whole lot of milestones with MG. She was 12 almost 13 when I met her, grown, really. Walking, talking, eating, using the bathroom properly. There are few and far between milestones after a kid can do all that. This is one of them. Its a big one.
I remember my first date. Ironically, it is almost identical to what she is doing, today. Lunch, and a movie. I didn't get flowers, though. I remember my Mom telling me to "order the chicken", and not the most expensive thing on the menu because you don't want to spend all the boy's money. (I will not have to give her this speech, nor would I. He is taking her to a sandwich shop for lunch :). I liked chicken, (still do) so that wasn't a hardship.
So, it's a Milestone Day....

Post pick up edit
The boy brought her red roses, beautiful. She was totally flustered, didn't quite know what to do with them, handed them to me! So she is out on her date, and I get to enjoy the pretty flowers, LOL

Monday, December 28, 2009

Monday brain. again.

And a short return to what we can possibly refer to as "normalcy", maybe?

Most of the festivites are over, and I am grateful for that. They were fun, This Christmas was actually one of the more laid back ones I can remember in a long while. No one's sink backed up, no one was fighting with anyone, and we got home before midnight. We had the fun of attempting a large family picture, (which I have not seen the results of yet), and the kids alternated between that high decibal present frenzy, to the high decibal too tired to function frenzy. This year, we had a 10 year old, 6 year old, 4 year old, 2 year old and a 7 month old. They were doing laps....
As far as New Years, well. I never have been a big NYE party girl. Not even as a kid. For me, it is kind of anti-climactic. If we stayed home, had a nice dinner and played Scrabble until we either fell asleep or it was midnight, I'd be fine. The last few years we've gone to Mr. and Mrs. Kilts house, I imagine that is a possibility again this year, nothing's really been decided, as of yet.
So, today is Monday. We have some fun for later this afternoon, MM's brother and his family are dropping in for a visit, from sunny Arid zone ah! (Hi MM's sister, when are YOU coming for a visit?) and it will be nice to see them. MM has gone back to work, and getting out of bed was tough. I got up with him, because, hey. Apparently, I STILL can't sleep in. (I did yesterday, it was heaven...)
Happy Monday, all

Saturday, December 26, 2009

argh! I'm broken!

I cannot, for the life of me, SLEEP IN this week!

It's not right....
I am not supposed to be getting out of my warm bed, early in the morning, when no one else is out here but me, the smelly dogs, the temperamental cats, and the fish who just don't seem to care as long as I feed them, damn it!
silly brain, doesn't it know I don't like to think at this time of day?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve

Merry Christmas, to all of you, I hope you are all safe, sound, and happy...
from our house to yours

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Queen Tuesday, Christmas Style

1. What is the most annoying Christmas song?
for me, honestly? Jingle Bells, because it's SO REPETETIVE. Kids usually just sing the chorus over and over and over and over, until I want to jingle THEIR bells. Sigh.
2. Name one annoying thing that happens to you each time you get together with your family during the holidays. Without fail, somewhere, in our family, a sink backs up. This year, it was MINE at Thanksgiving. That, and my Mom burns the bread...

3. What is eggnog? Think about it. Does anybody really know?
I just so happened to be watching "Good Eats" before I came to work, and Alton Brown MADE Egg Nog. So, I do actually know. But I should leave it a surprise for the rest of you.
4. Don't take this personally but there are lots of fruitcakes walking around. Have you encountered any real live nuts lately?
Hello? I work in a hospital. Fruitcake, for me is a year 'round treat. Matter of fact, I am eyeballing one right at this moment.
5. Why were the nine Lords a'leaping in those annoying tights???!
Because their twigs and berries are outlined for all the world to see, and by jumping and leaping it focus' your attention to their attributes. Those Lords are shameless
6. What is the most annoying Christmas gift you've ever received?What did you do with it??
I don't know it is really annoying, but it IS odd. Someone gave me an ornament gift one year of a white cat, dressed in a big, fluffy crinoline dress. It is disturbing. But yet, it is hanging on my tree. ( In the back, though)
7. Let's admit it: Christmas, with all its splendor and goodwill, can also be a pain in the royal patootie. How do you plan to circumvent annoyances this year and enjoy the season? I don't know that I successfully circumvented the annoyances, but, I do remind myself daily how lucky I am to have what I have, and tell myself to be grateful, because I have people that love me, that I love in return, and that I still have family close enough to celebrate with, and I can choose to avoid the stress. But I admit sometimes it's difficult....

As usual, for more fun, go here

Monday, December 21, 2009

the meanderings of my tired mind on a rainy Monday

Rainy day Monday, and Christmas is a few short days away. I know that you all are feeling the same kind of time crunch I probably am. As much as I love this time of year, I also love for it to be over.... I worked last night, work tonight and tomorrow, too, then I am off for a few days, and we go to celebrate Christmas with my side of the family. This year's celebration is kind of bitter-sweet, what with my Dad being diagnosed with lymphoma, again, and, well, my Grandmother is getting older, and I have to remind myself that as much as I would like her to, she can't live forever. Makes me sad thinking about it, though, so I am just going to enjoy all these days and minutes that I have, and not focus on anything negative. Besides, I gotta go to sleep soon and I don't want to have sad dreams.

Speaking of dreams, I dreamt yesterday (as I was napping for work) that Mustang Girl came home with SEVEN new piercings. (right now she only has her ears pierced). It was a strange dream. So when she left to go with friends yesterday I hollered out to her "No new piercings!!"
"ok" she answered, confused as hell. I still haven't told her about that dream. Poor kid.
Alright, I have meandered on enough, for a monday, and I've been up all night.
Good Monday to you all...

Friday, December 18, 2009

Friday Mieography

This was a tough one!

I couldn't find any online information on this lady, so I had to fly all the way to Finland to interview her.
Why Finland?
Because we ALL know that Mr. and Mrs. Claus live in Rovaneimi, Finland, don't we?

So, Mrs. Claus.... here is her mieography, straight from my interview with her.

She was born in a little, tiny village, somewhere in Sweden, in a year she would rather keep to herself. Her parents named her Kristina Maria, she was the second of four daughters. Her mother was the town blacksmith, and her father was the local schoolteacher. He educated all the children of their village, and made sure they had a very thorough education!
Kristina had her heart set on going away to college, and becoming a school teacher like her father, for she loved children. When she was there, she got a taste of what life was like away from her small village, and though she had fun initially, she found herself getting in trouble, and having poor grades. Fortunately, for her, she met a very nice young man, named Nick, and began to spend her time with him. She graduated from college Magna Cum Laude, with her teaching degree. By this time, she and Nick were in love, and he wanted to marry her. Before he proposed, though, he needed to tell her of his destiny.
Kristina was shocked and amazed at the fanciful tale he wove for her, about him being the heir to THE Santa Claus. He told her if she chose to honor him with her hand in marriage, they would HAVE to go live in Rovaneimi, with the elves, and reindeer, and that the magic of their home meant that they would live, a very, VERY long time, until it was time for him to choose to step down, and find an heir of his own.
She loved him, so she bravely accepted his marriage proposal, and went with him to live in Rovaneimi. They have established quite a compound there, and Mrs. Claus has devoted her life to educating the elves during their downtime.
She does not speculate about how much longer she and Nick plan on continuing their role, she only tells me he has not found an heir, yet, as he is being very selective.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Queen Meme Tuesday

This meme is called
The Ex Files

1. When is the last time someone did something EXtra-special for you? I broke my favorite coffee mug this summer, the one I take to work, that says "Goddess, Formerly Princess". It really bugged me that I broke it. MM snuck to the store I got it from, and came home and set it on the counter behind me, and when I turned around, SURPRISE! I loved it, still do.

2. Name one EXciting thing that happens in your life daily. I get to help parent a teenager!

3. Tell us the good, the bad and the uglies of your online EXperiences. The good? I met MM online.... The bad? I met a lot of toads before I met MM... the ugly? Um... those toads again.

4. What makes an ordinary day EXtraordinary and EXceptional? Different things, really, but anything that makes me laugh a lot makes an exceptional day for me

5. Name one embarrassing incident you had to EXplain to your mother when you were a child. Why I answered the door naked when the water guy came to give us fresh water. And why we got free water for 2 months after that... *grin*

6. If you could FedEX yourself anywhere in the world,
where would you go? Back to Paris

7. Who would you like to EXray and why? The Elephant Man, because I bet his films are cool! Or maybe, Mulder.. (but not Scully)

For more fun reads, go HERE

Monday, December 14, 2009

mixed bag

Oh my brain, it does hurt.

Going back to work tonight after 2 nights off, I am still tired from the three I worked last week!
On the plus side, though it was beautiful, the rain we got all weekend long washed away the foot of snow we'd gotten on Sunday and Monday.
We are also "dog sitting" this week, we have Mr. Kilts black lab mix, Lulu, gracing us with her presence. She is a sweet girl, not the high energy level of our dogs. She is obviously confused by their energy level, and doesn't quite like it when they get too bouncy around her.
One of my pregnant fish gave us a few babies, this last week, too. I managed to save a whole 2 of them. (2 is MORE than enough). They are cute when they are little tiny things! Hard to see, though. Right now they are living in a smaller, separate tank.
Oops gotta go, dogs barking
happy Monday

Saturday, December 12, 2009



Been a blog slacker this week. I've been working, and dealing with life issues, such as being sick, myself, and something that I've not been free to really post about, until now.
Some of you may know that my Dad had cancer, about 6 years back. Lymphoma, in his stomach. It was a rough time, for all of us, but him especially.
He is a tough customer, though, and beat that cancer back.
But it is back.
He has been complaining of a sore throat, for a few months, now. After jumping all the hoops that have been established in our fine, medical community (cough cough) we've finally got a diagnosis.
The actual location of the tumor is the base of his tongue, believe it or not. Large-ish, walnut sized, maybe bigger?
He kicked it once before
He will do it again.
In the mean time, everyone send your best thoughts and good karma his way. He deserves it, I know I am prejudiced, but I've not met a man his equal. (MM is on the right path, though ;))

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

This meme is called
You Are On Your Way

1. You are at a party in a very bad mood. There is an obnoxious guest with a camera snapping pictures of everyone in sight. Do you allow the photographs or ask them to stop? I would probably smile politely, for ONE photo, and if the guy persisted, I would more than likely leave because I shouldn't be at a party in a bad mood. Or, I would "accidentally" toss a drink, or worse on him.

2. You are shopping and watch the lady beside you at the jewelry co
unter slip an expensive diamond ring in her purse. What do you do? Honestly? I would rat her out. Stealing is not okay. I'd probably feel more compassionate towards someone stealing food, but a diamond ring? Nope.

3. You are on your way to a black tie affair and running late. You are the guest speaker at this event and everyone is waiting for you. A police officer pulls you over for speeding. Do you make up a story or tell him where you are going and try to talk your way out of the citation? Tell us your excuse. My Nursing license is right next to my drivers license. Most cops really hate to ticket nurses, especially in their hometowns, because we have long memories, mwaa haa haa. I'd probably just cry, because, knock on wood, I have NEVER gotten a speeding ticket.

4. You are on your way downstairs on Christmas morning to see what Santa Claus left. There are no gifts under the tree. He leaves a note that reads, "You've been VERY naughty this year."
What did you do??! Cried on a cop ;) or lied to him. Um, what didn't I do might be a better question. Is Santa going to visit us in the dungeon?

5. You are halfway through a first date with someone you really like. Suddenly your ex walks in and sits down at the table beside you. What do you do? Have an even better time. But I would probably try to speed up the date a little until we left the restaurant. Or better yet, complain to the waiter that the guest they just seated smells like a distillery (which would be true) and ask to be moved.

6. You are on your way to meet a billionaire. She is going to give you enough money to live on for the rest of your life IF you can answer this question correctly: Which came first the chicken or the egg? Absolutely the egg. God wanted to see if he could make such a smooth, oval object produce something as funny looking as a chicken. Its his own personal joke.

7. You are on your way to the sun and moon and stars for an intergalactic vacation.
You crash into a rainbow.
What do you find in your pot of gold? The miracle cure for Cancer.

as usual, for more of the Queen's fun, go here

Monday, December 7, 2009

So I had this blogpost all planned in my head kind of about Christmas lights, tree preferences and nosy cats, and cats who let you do just about anything to them.

But then last night happened.
My body does NOT like the antibiotics prescribed me, and last night was very, very unpleasant.
And I feel like I've been hit by a semi today.
So until I feel better, here is this, because anything is better than whining about being sick:

Thursday, December 3, 2009

It is true

Nurses make the WORST patients.

I have been fighting off this silly respiratory infection for weeks. Refusing to admit defeat. But today?
I admit defeat.
There isn't enough thera-flu in the world that is going to win this battle.
I can't even clean the floor with the dry mop without getting winded.
And MM has pointed out to me that he can hear me "crackle" when we lay down to go to sleep.
And, I am not hearing the way I should.
the list goes on and on.
(not really)
but I gave in. Called the doctors office. They are seeing me today at 3:30.
I hate going to the doctor....

Post MD visit
Well I guess I don't do anything halfway, I appear to have the mother of URI's, and was given antibiotics, the offer of the really hefty cough syrup (which I turned down, I hate being hung over) and instructions to go home and nap, not to work for the next three nights... So, URI 1, Mielikki 0

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Still toiling away in the Queen's Dungeon....

1. What is favorite item to shop for and why? Um, wine glasses, because they make so many different kinds for so many different things, and its funny to me that we can't just get an old jelly jar and be happy with that.

2. Quality vs. Price. Will you buy off-brand replicas at a discount store or must you have the real thing? Why or why not? If the off brand replica looks good/tastes the same, yes, I will buy it. I very seldom got anything that was "name brand" as I was growing up, we couldn't afford those things. But I was clean and well dressed, anyhow. I just don't, and never have put much stock in that kind of thing. I'd rather spend the money on other cool things, or MORE cool things...

3. Have you ever asked a sales clerk to remove something from display if it is the last one in the store? Tell us what special something would make you strip the clothes off a mannequin.
(which begs the question...Are all mannequins born naked?) I have, on occasion, asked for the very last one of something, as long as it isn't flawed or broken, why not?
Something that would make me strip a mannequin, hmmm? A big, warm comfortable hand knit sweater. I love anything that will keep me toasty warm...

5. I really don't care if a guy goes shopping with me. I'm in my own zone and always have a plan. Are you an alone-shopper or would you like to have company? OK I have given up all hope of ever getting out of the dungeon. I REALLY hope you're sitting down, my Queen.
I don't like to shop. It gives me a headache. I am a 'get in, get out' shopper. I do love to give presents to my loved ones, and am all about finding the right gift. But the actual shopping? *shudder*. Alright, I know... throw away the key.....
In answer to the question, though, I like to shop alone. I can get it done faster...

6. Have you ever done anything other than actually try on clothes in a dressing room? (I have no idea why this question followed the previous one. Ahem.) Um. No. See my answer above. I avoid dressing rooms like the plague...

7. Do you like or do you get annoyed when salesclerks and store management follows you around asking "May I help you?" a million times? (I have no idea why this question followed the previous one.) I don't like being stalked by anyone in a store. However, when I do seem to need help, I can never seem to find any of my stalkers. It seems like they can sense when you need help, and then all disappear...

8. Create your very own store-brand name. (ie; Toys 'R Us, WalMart) What would YOUR establishment's name be?
*Sarcasm* would be the name of my establishment. There would be nothing in it....

For more fun, go here

Monday, November 30, 2009

Monday Morning Mush

So here we are, the Monday after Thanksgiving, hopefully recovered from our tryptophan hangovers, (those of us that chose to eat Turkey). I am struggling with the fact that it is nearly December, for 2 reasons.

The weather is just kind of too good. That isn't a complaint, in any way, because it's been pretty nice. We've had some rain, and it is cold, but its a sunny cold.
The other reason is that time is just going by, way, too fast.
Anyhow. Despite my protests, 'tis the season.
We kicked it off this weekend, by going to see Trans-Siberian Orchestra in concert. Can I just encourage you all now to do that if you have the opportunity? Their ticket prices are very good, and they put on a laser and fire show that is very entertaining. You won't regret it. And they performed for well over two hours. What surprised me the most, was, in the end, during some of the band introductions, was to learn that they were started by two men from Brooklyn. Impressive.
Right now I am watching the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Concert. Jerry Lee Lewis just pushed over his piano bench. Troublemaker. He could of at least set the piano on fire. Crosby, Stills and Nash is on right now... they may be older, but they still pull it off...
Happy Monday, Everyone

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Unless your a Turkey

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

So how do you like your Turkey?


deep fried

or what?

We're having bbq Turkey this year. And I am counting the days! mmmmmmmmm

Monday, November 23, 2009

Busy week

Ah, its Thanksgiving week..

I do really like Thanksgiving. But I am working for the next three nights.
I'll be off the actual day, but having worked the night before means that I will be minimally awake for it.
Luckily for us, we are going to spend the afternoon and evening with our very good friends, and they are doing the hard part of the meal, the Turkey. We will bring plenty of side dishes and our lovely selves. (After I get in a nap, of course).
Yesterday, we went and saw The Nutcracker, with our afore-mentioned friends daughter dancing in it. Same as last year, except she is a year older now. It is so much fun watching the kids dance. Another benefit is that 2 men of the family were also in it, Mr. Kilt (who wore a kilt) and J, their middle son. They were in the "party" scene, if that means anything to anyone.
So, despite my objections, the holiday season is descending upon us.
I am not ready.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday Mieography

This one is short, because frankly, I don't feel well.

Bette Clair McMurray was born in Dallas Texas, in 1924. She dropped out of high school and married Warren Nesmith, before he left for World War II, but they were divorced by 1946. He had abandoned his family. They had one son, Michael, whom she had sole custody of. Needing to support them, she got a job as a bank secretary, and rose to the level of Executive Secretary. She had always intended to be an artist, but you do what you have to do to support your family.
She was having a hard time making ends meet, so she made extra money painting windows at the bank. She was also having a difficult time correcting mistakes she made using her electric typewriter. While she was painting a window, she had an epiphany, about how an artist corrects their errors by painting over the error, not erasing it. So, she took some tempera water based paint in a bottle, (which she had mixed up in her kitchen blender) and started using it to correct her mistakes. She used this, secretly, for five years, and made some improvements on the recipe with the help of her son's chemistry teacher. Some of her bosses admonished her for using it, but her co workers frequently asked her if they could use it, too. In 1956 she began marketing the the stuff, calling it "Mistake Out". The name was later changed to Liquid Paper when she started her own company. She was using her own kitchen as a laboratory, and mixing the product now in her electric mixer. She was using this to try and make money, on the side. She ended up making a mistake at work that she couldn't correct, and got fired. She then had the opportunity to devote all her time to Liquid Paper, and the business took off. By 1967 it was a million dollar business. She finally moved into her own plant in 1968.
In 1979, she sold Liquid Paper, for 47.5 million dollars. She died in 1980, at the young age 56. She left half her money to her son, Michael, (whom some of you may know as Mike Nesmith, of Monkee fame..) and used the remainder to finance the "Council on Ideas", a think tank devoted to exploring world problems. She believed money to be a tool, not a solution to a problem.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Its coming up, soon.

One of my favorite days of the year.
One I await with anticipation. One of the few days I sit and watch
college football.

My beloved Navy team is coming up on the *most* important game of the season.
The Navy-Army game.
We've won the last seven times.
Last year?
a 34-0 shut out.
Thats right. The Army couldn't even get a field goal.
Not one point.
I love the Midshipmen!

So, lets make it eight, Middies, lets make it eight.
I've got some bragging to do.....

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Lets see if I can get out of the dungeon....

1. Tell us about your superstitions. Do you have any? Do you "x out" black cats on the windshield of your car, avoid cracks in the sidewalk or practice other rituals that make you feel safer?
Don't have any? Come on now! Make up some....Well I happen to have two black cats in my household, and I actually think they are pretty lucky. I will admit that I don't like Friday 13th. I have had a few bad things happen to me on that day, so I tend to just stay home and avoid them if I can...

2. Has anything paranormal ever happened to you that you can write about?Once, when I was spending the night at my sister's house, I had gone to bed in the guest room, and I "felt" a small dog jump onto the foot of my bed, circle a few times, then lay down. They have a small dog, so I turned on the light, and she wasn't there. "Your imagining things", I thought. A few minutes later, as I was dropping off to sleep, I felt the same thing.... my brother in law thinks it was the spirit of one of his old beagles...

3. Have you ever had a near-death experience?
Care to share? I almost drowned when I was a kid, but I don't really remember anything, except the finality of that last sinking, and then the sweet taste of the air when the lady who saved me pulled me out of the lake.

4. Pheromones...aka "love fireworks" (I think I remember those)...are a force to be reckoned with. Do you believe that two people can have an uncontrollable chemical reaction to each other? How do you know this to be true? Wow, this one is kind of tough. I've never really had what I would consider a chemical reaction to anyone. Attraction? yeah... I think I prefer the 'slow burn' kind that you know will last longer then that quick "boom!"

5. Do you believe that modern day witches can put spells on people?
If so, who would you like to hoodoo and why? Sorry, I don't really buy into this one, I am not convinced anyone can spell another. I guess I would put my hoodoo on the dungeon door so I could get out and get warm!

6. ESP! What do those letters stand for in your life? Everlasting Sensitive Platypus!

7. Do you ever hear strange noises in your house?
If so, what do they sound like? The strange noises heard in my house sound suspiciously like said black cats terrorizing each other, and trying to get into my fishtanks...

8. Tell us about a time you "knew" something was going to happened before it did. Are you one of those intuitive types or do you know someone who is ? Do tell. I once knew that my (now ex) husband was going to have a car accident on his way to work. He went to leave, and I just had this feeling. I told him to please be extra careful, and he kind of laughed at me. Until I got that phone call that someone had side swiped him on the freeway, causing extensive damage to his classic car. He wasn't laughing then....

9. I'm a tad gifted in the dream department. Really. Sometimes my dreams are prophetic and come true. It can be a blessing and a curse. Has this ever happened to you? If not, would you like to have this gift? (Be careful what you wish for. It can be freaky at times.) You know, I really wouldn't like for this gift to be given to me. I do have premonitions at times, and that is freaky enough for me. My dreams are so bright and vivid, I usually remember them all very well, and if they started coming true I think that I might be afraid to go to sleep, and it would make my insomnia problem worse... so, no thanks!!!

As usual, to see more participants, go here

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Parental Units

We had a road trip this weekend, down to visit my parents. My mom, Aunt Tuna, has recently had surgery on her foot, and she had a serious case of cabin fever. She's been holed up for a few weeks, and still has her foot in this ugly shoe thingy that she has to wear, but she needed to be OUT!
My Dad has been under the weather, too. He has been having some throat issues, and it involves him having a biopsy and cat scans and all of that. I am really hoping and praying that it is something minor. And not something else. The word we are all thinking, but NOT ready to say, yet. NOT ready to say.
Anyhow. So we went to visit, to get my Mom out of the house, to end her cabin fever. MG and I took her to the store, and around, and then we went back and got all the men, and went to dinner. It was a nice trip down. MG got to see where I grew up, even the room I lived in for years. (too many years!).
I am working Thanksgiving, so we won't be making it down there for Turkey day, so it was nice to be able to get a short visit in...

Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday Mieography

For the first time in my mieography history, I am going to repeat someone.

I did this lady before I was "officially" doing the mieographies.
I chose her, (and choose her again) because what she did for women was SO VERY important,
and I am re-doing her because I wasn't too very thorough the first time.
She is so one of my favorite women. I just admire the hell out of her!

So, another Margaret.
Margaret Sanger was born in Corning, New York. Her mother was a devout Roman Catholic, who experienced eighteen pregnancies, (with eleven live births) before she died of tuberculosis and cervical cancer. Her father earned his living chiseling tombstones, and was, surprisingly, an advocate for suffrage, free public education, and, socialism. Being the sixth of the eleven surviving siblings, Margaret spent much of her time doing household chores, and taking care of her younger siblings. Her older sisters managed to get her out, for awhile, to be educated for two years, but when her mother got sick, she needed to come home. She nursed her mother until she died, then she went into a nursing program, and married an architect. She settled in NYC with her husband, but soon developed tuberculosis herself. The couple moved, to Saranac, NY, where she gave birth to her first baby, Stuart.
Their family home burnt down, and back to NYC they went. She went to work on the East Side of Manhattan, and also started writing a column for "The New York Call" called what Every Girl Should Know". Risking imprisonment, she also distributed a pamphlet called Family Limitation. The Comstock Law of 1873 was still in place, and enforced, and this outlawed the dissemination of contraceptive information and devices.
Margaret felt like women needed to be able to decide when they wanted to be pregnant, and, that women should be able to enjoy sexual relations without the fear of getting pregnant. She was working with the poor women on the Lower East Side who were constantly suffering through frequent childbirths, induced abortions, and miscarriages. She became more verbal in her demands that women become knowledgeable about birth control. The only birth control advice given by doctors at this time was abstinence. Margaret had made a friend, Sadie, and this was the advice that Sadie's doctor gave her. A few months after, Sadie was found dead, from a self induced abortion. This was a turning point in Margarets life.
She separated from her husband, and in 1914, she began a monthly newsletter entitled "The Woman Rebel", which promoted contraception. The slogan of the magazine was "No Gods and No Masters". She coined the term "birth control in this newsletter as well.
She was indicted for violating US postal obscenity laws, but she jumped bail, and went to England as "Bertha Watson". She returned to the united states, however, in time to see her daughter, Peggy, who died not soon after at the age of five.
Her husband was jailed for thirty days for distributing "Family Limitations" to an undercover postal worker. While she was traveling in Europe, Margaret saw, for the first time, a diaphragm, and she was convinced that it was more effective than the suppositories and douches that she had been distributing. She began smuggling them in after she returned home, being the first to introduce them to the United States.
1916 found "What Every Girl Should Know" turn into a book. It was followed by "What Every Mother Should Know". She launched another periodical, called The Birth Control Review and Birth Control News", and opened a family planning clinic in Brooklyn. It was raided on its ninth day of operation. She went to prison for a month. Not soon after, a Judge finally wrote an opinion allowing doctors to prescribe birth control.
She then founded the American Birth Control League, and traveled to Japan to promote birth control there, as well. She and her first husband had divorced, by this time, and she married an oil tycoon, James Slee. With the help of money, she was finally able to open a legal birth control clinic, the first of its kind. It had an all female staff of doctors and social workers. She continued on with her work, traveling, providing information about birth control, and continued to write for her own publications, and others. In the 1960's, she actively promoted the birth control pill. She toured Europe, Asia, and Africa lecturing, and establishing clinics.
She died in 1966, in Tucson, Arizona, eight days before her 87th birthday. A few months before, her life goal had been realized. A legal decision had been passed allowing for married couples in the United States to use birth control...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

so this is how that feels...

Last night, MM and I went to meet some of his old friends from high school for drinks and dinner. One of them was visiting from out of state, so it seemed like too nice of an opportunity to pass up. Plus, I don't often pass up the chances at a good mojito...

Anyhow, we managed to get to where we needed to, and I met the friends. 2 of them were single women. One of them very newly single. And that's when it kind of dawned on me. For once, (and it hasn't happened in a long, long time), I was the happily taken woman of the group. Secure in my relationship, and not in any way, shape or form looking for love. They had some discussion of what it's like to be newly single, some giddy talk of men, (or lack of), and such.
And I had nothing to contribute!
MM and I have been together for a little over two years, now. And there I sat, acting like the old, stuffy happily married woman. (though we're not married)
and you know? I was, and am perfectly happy in that role. Didn't bother me in the slightest.
I know, and remember how hard it is to find someone in this day and age
and it makes me value MM all the more :)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Happy Veterans Day, to all.

Especially the ones who have served, and still serve our country.

the Queen hath returned

1. How do you find your own personal peace/nirvana? I go someplace quiet, if I can find one, and try to empty my mind of all that is causing me stress. I will admit, sometimes, I am not able to get where I need to. Then I lay awake and grumble

2. Where do you go to find respite and solace? If the weather is good, my hammock in the back yard. If the weather is not so good, well, I really like rainfall, and a warm fire, so I will usually relax in the quiet house
Is there a particular place, city, country, room in your house? Oh if only my hammock were it's own country. Usually, anywhere near a body of water I can find some internal peace and relaxation

3. Who is the most peace-loving person you know? What makes them so? Ah, peace loving? Honestly I think everyone I know loves peace. This is a hard one for me... Probably my friend, Mrs. Kilt (not her real name) because she has made peace with so many things in her life that I think would be difficult to make peace with.

4. What do you do when your inner peace is threatened? Retreat! Retreat! Honestly? Retreat! I stick my head in the ground like an Ostrich.
Do you have a strategy, a routine, religious faith, a calm yourself down? I remind myself that I am not alone, and know that whatever happens, is what happens. Sometimes we just have to go with it, and find that open window. If all else fails, a hot shower usually does me some good.

5. What is your favorite comfort food? It depends, really. Usually something starchy.

6. Do you have a pet that brings you happiness and peace? If not, what type of animals bring you peaceful thoughts? My fish tank calms me nicely. Something about those nice, floaty fish

7. What is your favorite peace song? Oh, dang another tough question. The Christmas song "Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me", or, possibly Imagine. Too hard to call

8. Did you post a peace globe on November 5th-Here is where I get tossed in the dungeon. I did not post a peace globe. But not because I didn't want to! Life, these last few weeks has been, uh, kind of rough, and honestly? I wasn't in the best frame of mind to write any kind of blog post on peace. I don't want to 'half ass' anything, so I actually took the high road (I think) and left the peace talk to the ones who could be more eloquent and heart felt than I was. When things even out, and I can sit back and find that right spot, I will get a peace globe. But I want to mean it.

for more players, go here

Monday, November 9, 2009

Ready for New Years.

Can I just admit, here and now, that I am really ready for this year to draw to an end?

I won't miss it.

Truthfully, it hasn't been really the best of years. It hasn't been the worst, either, but, things have just kind of happened this year that I could have lived without.

Work things

family things.

Every things.

I can give some examples.

January second found MM and I off the road in his jeep. Now, yes, jeeps are made for offroad, but not for SLIDING off the road, ending up in the middle of a clump of trees.

In February? It snowed. A lot. And a tree fell dangerously close to the house, actually hitting it in a narrow miss.


OH, the mustang was wrapped around a pole by some guy taking it to the sandblaster in preparation for painting it.

We also have a dead Lincoln Continental. It may be revive-able, though.

I cut sections off the tips of two of my fingers with an evil work razor.

2 weeks later I stabbed myself in the palm with a knife.

MM got his first speeding ticket in years.

I could go on, but I won't. Because it is counter productive...

Don't get me wrong, I am not miserable, not unhappy, not un-satisfied. I have things and people to be grateful for, I can usually find something to smile about every day. If I can't, I go and google Calvin and Hobbes and look at the snowman series. That always brightens me. And I have the best friends a girl could ask for, and I wouldn't trade either MM or MG for anything.

But this year has kind of been a bitch.

And I am going to be happy to count down its end.

Come on, 2010.

I know it's going to be a good one....

Friday, November 6, 2009

Friday Mieography

How about another Margaret?

Margaret Mead was the eldest of five children born to a Quaker family, in Pennsylvania. Her father was a professor of finance at the Wharton School of the University of Pa, and her mother was a sociologist, who studied Italian immigrants.
Her family moved frequently, and because of this, her early education was kind of fractured, she was both home schooled, and traditional schooled. She was accepted at De Pauw University, where she studied for one year, then transitioned over to Barnard College, where she earned a Bachelor's degree, in 1923. In 1924 she obtained her Masters from Columbia University, and in 1925, she set out to do fieldwork in Polynesia. She came back from that, and ended up working at the American Museum of Natural History in NYC, as an assistant curator, while she worked on her Ph.D, which she got from Columbia in 1929.
She was married to Luther Cressman, a theological student during this time. They divorced in 1928. She often referred to this marriage as "my student marriage". She next married a New Zealand native, Reo Fortune. He was also an anthropologist. They were married until 1935. Interestingly, she describes this marriage as more passionate. She had been told she could not have children, but when, in 1935 a different doctor told her that she might be able to have children, they divorced.
She married, again, in 1936 (no grass grew under her feet), and kept this man, (a British anthropologist named Gregory Bateson) until 1950. They had a daughter, Mary, who grew up to be an anthropologist, as well. Interestingly, Dr. Benjamin Spock was Mary's pediatrician, and Margarets views, and experiences from observing other cultures, and implimenting some of what she liked (such as breastfeeding on the baby's demand, instead of a set schedule) influenced Dr. Spock, and ended up in his writings. Her husband, whom she loved dearly, left her in 1950, and she was heartbroken. They remained friends, and she took his picture with her on every trip, and even had it at her deathbed
She also had a close, and, many claim (including her daughter Mary) a sexual relationship with Ruth Benedict. She never outwardly proclaimed her bisexual ness, but said, instead that it is to be expected that an individuals sexual orientation may evolve throughout life. She had a second female partner, Rhoda Metraux, also an anthropologist. They combined their professional lives, as well. Their personal (romantic) letters were printed in book form in 2006.
As far as her career, she did much. She was a curator of ethnology at the Natural History Museum from 46-69, she taught at Columbia as an adjunct professor from 54-78, she was the professor of anthropology and the chair of the Division of Social Sciences at Fordham University from 68-70, she founded their anthropology department. She has also held numerous positions in the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
She also wrote some important research books, her first about Samoa, "Coming of Age in Samoa", which was very controversial when it was published, in 1928, after she had spent time there studying. She also wrote a book called "Sex and the Temperament in Three Primative Societies, where she documented female dominancy in some of these tribes, shocking the then male dominant world.
She also spent much time researching the European Shtetl, this study financed by the American Jewish Committee. She spent much time interviewing many European born Jews about their family structures and experiences. Some blame this study for the "Jewish Mother" stereotype.
Margaret died, of Pancreatic Cancer in 1978, and is buried in Buckingham, Pa.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


sometimes, it never goes away.

I guess this is the time for my brain to revisit boyfriends past.
Honestly, usually once they are past, I don't usually give them much thought, they are PAST for a reason.
But somethings, just don't fade.
Up until a bit over three years ago, I had never had a boyfriend who scared me. Sure, I had a few end bad, with modicums of animosity, but, I was never scared.
Thus, I am sure I was fairly naive about that, uh, aspect.
I will actually call him out by name, because, frankly, he's not smart enough to find my blog, and if he did, well, more power to him. He may scare me, but he won't limit me.
Anyhow. His name was Jeff. Commonly referred to now as "The Village Drunk". (I have also dated The Village Idiot.)
I knew, when I met him, that he was probably going to be a problem. On our first date, he drank a lot of beer, then, came to my apartment, and drank more.
Still, he had personality, he had a job, and at the time he seemed well, stable. Oh, how little I knew.
Within short order he lost his apartment, and went to live with family, about 3 hours away from where I was. I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt, and so I did, and, he'd come up here every weekend, and usually end up passed out on my couch each night. More of his stuff showed up in my apartment, including a fax machine where he got work orders. After about a month of this, bottles of Jack Daniels started showing up, too. And disappearing as quickly as they showed up.
Then, we started having to go out only to places that served hard liquor. I found myself drinking more than I had in a long time. And it did not feel good. I wasn't happy. I recognized my own drinking was increasing, and cut myself off. He didn't care, at this point I was a pretty handy designated driver for him.
He was so drunk on Thanksgiving, around my FAMILY that he went out to his van and passed out. I was super embarrassed. I was searching for the person that I thought he was. I KNEW I wasn't going to change him. The "relationship" was surprisingly platonic, (booze is a serious mood killer, at least booze in excess is...) for which I am forever grateful. He does not have intimate knowledge of me.
It blew up badly, while he was drunk (no surprise) and involved him getting behind the wheel and ME threatening to call the cops if he did. Cell phone in hand. I had to work that night, and went to work shook up, but resolute. He slept his drunk off in my apartment, then left. I never saw him again.
But I heard from him. He had a fun time, calling my phone, both cell and land line, threatening me, telling me I needed anger management classes, and wanting his stuff. One night, while I as at work, he called my phone, every 15 minutes, for over 6 hours. I bet my neighbors were thrilled. I changed my numbers, changed my locks, and put all his stuff out on my stoop for his collection. That REALLY pissed him off, let me tell you. That, and the fact that I refused to go have dinner with him after he picked it up.
"We could have been friends" he said.
"Not on your life" I thought, glad I had changed the locks.
Because of the nature of his threats, I looked over my shoulder for weeks. He knew where I lived, where I worked, and what I drove. I knew what he drove. A windowless, beat up white work van. Every time I saw one, it scared me. I envisioned a drunk Jeff, carrying out his threats. I saw a white van at work one evening and got so scared I called in for security to walk me in.
I gradually got over that. I met MM a year later, and, well, things have obviously progressed. I've moved, I drive a different car, I have a different (and much happier) life. I occasionally reference Jeff, especially to show Monkey Girl that we don't settle for unstable men. We don't accept this kind of behavior. But I never really sit and think about it.
Unless a dirty white work van shows up in my rear view mirror.
And a part of me still thinks
Did he find me?

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Creepy old man!

Way back when in 67
I was the dandy
Of Gamma Chi
Sweet things from Boston
So young and willing
Moved down to Scarsdale
And where the hell am I

Hey Nineteen
No we can't dance together
No we can't talk at all
Please take me along
When you slide on down

Hey Nineteen
That's 'Retha Franklin
She don't remember the Queen of Soul
It's hard times befallen
The sole survivors
She thinks I'm crazy
But I'm just growing old

Hey Nineteen
No we got nothing in common
No we can't talk at all
Please take me along
When you slide on down

The Cuervo Gold
The fine Colombian
Make tonight a wonderful thing
We can't dance together
No we can't talk at all

Heard this in the car today. I had forgotten about this one....
Creepy old man!

Monday, November 2, 2009

I give love a bad name

I was running some errands the other day, listening to this radio station, (call letters are Jack, ironically).

It usually plays a fairly decent mix of music, though MM has warned me that they like to play blocks of Bon Jovi on monday mornings. (So I avoid monday mornings). So far, I had heard some good stuff, like "Last Dance For Mary Jane", "Just Like Heaven" by the Cure, and other things. Its a very eclectic radio station.
After a commercial, they started playing, well. Bon Jovi. "You Give Love A Bad Name." And bang. There it was. Suddenly, I was a junior in high school again, riding the school bus, listening to all the kids giggle because a boy I had broken up with was singing this AT me.
He was bitter, I guess. But let me give the back story.
I never liked this boy.
Sure, he was nice enough. He sure liked me. My friends poked and pestered me about him, constantly. His name was Marcus. Pick pick pick, nagging me to give him a chance. I did what a lot of kids do, I gave in. I dated him, because my friends so desperately wanted me to. Stupid.
Well, it lasted less than 2 weeks. During that two weeks, I was gifted with candy, stuffed animals, even a dozen roses. For no good reason. (found out later he stole the money to buy me those things.) I was hung upon, never left alone. Pestered, to death. Called constantly. Never ending.
At the end of one of those phone calls, he told me he loved me.
I said
No you don't. ( I was seventeen. I knew the truth, even if HE didn't)
the next day I broke up with him
and that was the day I gave love a bad name.
And now? How many years later? (almost 23)
I still think of Marcus when I hear that damned song.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Friday Mieography

You could call this woman by many names.

Her birth name was Lucille Wood Smith. She was born on Halloween, btw.
Her name was changed, when she was an infant to Frances Octavia Smith.
She would go on to take the stage name Dale Evans.....

Whatever you want to call her, she had an interesting life.
She was married at age fourteen, and bore her first child at fifteen. She was divorced by seventeen, and remarried, that same year. That marriage also failed, and she married another. It also did not go well. Divorce number three.
Then, she met, and married Roy Rogers. It was his THIRD marriage. They were married for fifty-one years; she helped raise the three children he'd had with his second wife, whom had passed away.
Her singing career started at a radio station where she worked as a secretary. She sang jazz, swing, and big band music. She eventually landed a screen test, and was contracted with 20th. Century Fox. The studio didn't want her known as a single mother, so they touted her as the unmarried supporter of her teenaged brother, (whom was actually her son, Tommy). It wasn't until she was married to Roy that she was able to clear up the misconception.
She and Roy had a child, Robin, who was born with Down's Syndrome. During this era, parents of Down's kids were encouraged to place their children into institutions, Roy and Dale would have none of that, they took Robin home, instead. Sadly, she died, just before her second birthday. Robin inspired Dale to write her bestseller, "Angel Unaware". She wanted to change people's public perceptions of of developmentally disabled children. There is a training center in in Texas now named after her. She and Roy went on to adopt two more children after Robin died.
She also had a very successful television career with Roy, co- starring in The Roy Rogers show, where she rode her trusty horse, Buttermilk. Dale wrote the song "Happy Trails".
She is also known for being very public, and outspoken about her Christianity.
During her career, she was in more than thirty films, and wrote over two hundred songs. She has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and is in numerous Hall's of Fame. She died of Congestive Heart Failure two and a half years after Roy died.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

sugar high

Most of us, at this particular time of year (myself included) find ourselves partaking of more candy than we usually would. I firmly believe Halloween brings out the sugar tooth in all of us. Except those who have no sugar tooth at all. I've met a few like that, they are few and far between.

The other day, we of the Mustang household decided to go see Where The Wild Things Are. (I am not ready, really, to talk about the movie. Don't know if I will be).
We decided, wisely, not to break the bank on candy purchased from the theater, and went into one of the local candy and ice cream shoppes instead. (Yes, it is a shoppe). MM and MG are into all things sour, and made their selections accordingly. I hemmed and hawed, as usual, looking for what I wanted.
What I did find, though, was something I hadn't had in a LONG time.
I found Zots.
Remember those?

They make pop rocks taste like child's play.
Zots are brightly flavored candy that have a tiny hole drilled into them. The secret to a zot is what comes out of that hole. Fizzy, fizzy (probably chemical) goodness slowly oozes out, fizzing on your tongue, making a constant, fizzy party in your mouth.
Of course I bought numerous Zots (and some tropical starbursts, too), and as we walked down the street, towards our movie, we all had a fizzy party in our mouthes..

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

my crazy dreams strike again

I had the strangest dream last night.

You all know that I do fish now.
I have a 39 gallon tank
2 five gallon tanks that are homes to my Betta
and one 2.5 gallon tank that holds MM's Betta (cough). Its his, really it is....


no more fish tanks. Really. I don't need any more.
But in my dream.... I had this, er, wall of tanks? With mail slots where you could put the fish in. Only, I wasn't really keeping fish??
My father had gotten me, of all things, this little Platypus.
Yep. A Platypus. A small one. And it climbed out of its mail slot, and was running around the house, clicking its bill menacingly at us. We got it back into its mail slot, once, and, out of the next spot a POLAR BEAR stuck it's nose out.
I had a polar bear, in my wall. With a Platypus.
Behind a mail slot.....
And then?
I dreamt about bunnies. Pink, and chocolate brown ones.
anyone want to meet me in the assylum?

Monday, October 26, 2009

the sock that killed my brain

Ah, Monday again.

I've things to do today, really I do.
What I really need to get up and do is go to the yarn palace, and have some friendly lady help me with the sock that is now kicking my ass.
The dreaded magic loop sock.
I was going along, swimmingly Love that the whole sock is made on one circular needle, instead of messing with double pointed needles.
And screech
I came to this one part
and I either have too many stitches
or I am utterly confused over what they want.
So off I go, to see if I can salvage my sock.
Wish me luck
because I still have to knit the next one....

Friday, October 23, 2009

Margaret Tobin was born in Missouri, to her Irish immigrant parents, John and Johanna. She and her sister moved to Leadville, Colorado, when she was 18, where she got a job in a department store. She met, and married James Joseph Brown, (known as JJ), who was the son of Irish immigrants, as well. She had planned to marry a rich man, but, fell in love with JJ instead. They had two children, a boy and a girl. JJ was no slacker, and they came into great wealth because JJ knew engineering. Margaret became involved in women's rights, helping to establish the National American Woman's Suffrage Association (NAWSA), and she also worked in the local soup kitchens, helping to feed the poor families (usually miners) in the area.

The Browns eventually moved to Denver, where she became a charter member of the Denver Woman's Club, who claimed the mission of improving women's lives through education and philanthropy. In 1901, Margaret was one of the first women to enroll in the Carnegie Institute, in New York. She became fluent in French, German and Russian, and, ran for the US Senate.
After being married to JJ for 23 years, they amicably separated, and remained friends their entire lives. She received a cash settlement, a home in Denver, and a 700 dollar monthly allowance to continue her travels, and philanthropic activities.
And travel, she did. She boarded the RMS Titanic as a first class passenger, in France. When the ship hit its infamous ice bert, Margaret spent her time putting OTHER people in the lifeboats. She finally went off the ship in Lifeboat No. 6, which she quickly commandeered, and turned back towards the ship, to search for survivors. Thus, her nickname "The unsinkable Molly Brown". No survivors were found.
She decided, upon her return, to run for senate, again, but dropped out of the race. Her husband, whom she had not divorced, died, and left her some inheritance, of which her own children protested. She got her inheritance, and never spoke to her children, again. She continued, aided by her fame, to promote the issues close to her heart, women's, and workers rights, education and literacy for children, and she went to France to help rebuild areas damaged by WW I, and tend the wounded soldiers. There, she was awarded the French Legion of Honour. She died at age 65 of a Cerebral Hemorrhage.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

you smell!

Whats with all the celebrities that want us to smell like them?
at least, thats how I perceive it...
I was thumbing through a magazine, today, and page after page, was a celebrity, touting perfumes, or colognes.
Tom Brady, for Stetson
Halle Berry, Faith Hill AND Tim McGraw, for their own,
and lets not forget those Britney adds.
I actually blame Elizabeth Taylor.
I know, I know. She's sick, she's old....
but she has hawked SO MANY perfumes.... she kind of started this mess, didn't she?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

4th amendment


The third amendment, for those curious, simply states that we don't have to house soldiers anymore.... I felt like trying to debate that one would be silly. Its not controversial, (anymore), and, I imagine that some of us would be HAPPY to house a soldier in need...

So, without further ado, here is my take on the fourth amendment. I must say, thus far, this has actually been the toughest one....

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

This amendment is one, admittedly, that I started out not really knowing anything about it’s creation, or why our forefathers needed it to be.

What I’ve learned, is that the British were very fond of something called a “writ of assistance", which pretty much gave them the right to search for anything, anywhere, at any time, without expiration or cause. You see, they didn’t want any “prohibited or uncustomed” goods in the hands of the Americans.

So, they would search. Repeatedly, and take what they found, or what they wanted. Especially in lean times, because they needed to feed their army. These writs only expired six months after the sovereign died, which means as long as the king was alive, any home could be searched, and any goods taken, since most things were prohibited and uncustomed. Smuggling was at its height during this era, since there was a blockade in place preventing the delivery of supplies to the shores of America. I imagine the people were pretty sick of having strangers go through their homes, and supplies, and seeing said supplies get taken by His Majesties red coats. To feed the other red coats. I would hazard a guess that the loyalist homes were searched far less often than any of the “rebels”. I completely understand why our forefathers sought to prevent this. It would get very old, very quickly.

As important as this amendment was for them, it is just as important for us. Probably the most important phrase in this amendment, one that gets debated, and hung up on a regular basis is “probable cause”. One definition that I have found in my search is this:

"a reasonable amount of suspicion, supported by circumstances sufficiently strong to justify a prudent and cautious person's belief that certain facts are probably true". (wikipedia). I am guessing that the judge is meant to be the prudent and cautious person. But, as I am sure we all realize, judges are people, with their own failings, and frailties, and I am positive that the fine people who work in law enforcement are aware of which failing and or frailty most judges have, and apply for their warrants accordingly. Were I in their shoes, I would do the same.

None the less, probable cause must be demonstrated. And can be very subjective. Another point of this amendment that frequently comes under fire is what is specifically included in the search warrant itself. If a room, or a person, or a car is searched that was not included in that warrant, any evidence that has been gathered will more than likely be in-admissable. This can, and has, make or break any case that comes up in front of any judge. It can get a guilty person freed on a technicality. The person doing the investigation, searching the homes, and effects must follow that warrant to the letter. I would not want that job.

As an aside, though, my question is this. When a house is searched, do they really toss the house, and leave it a big, giant mess? If they don’t find anything do they send someone to clean the house? I would be a very angry citizen indeed if, for some reason, law enforcement came in and wreaked my house. But I digress...

I do have another question. One that was not even a consideration for our forefathers.


I bet, the first time a computer got searched, it was hotly debated. Is it considered our “papers”? We keep most of our documents in computers these days. It is one of our effects. Which is specified in the amendment. Do they have to, specifically site computers on the search warrant? Do they bring a computer specialist to the house to break into the computer, and read what’s on it, or do they simply take the modem with them. If they find no other evidence in the house what so ever, CAN they just take the modem to search at their leisure? I obviously, have never been searched. Nor do I plan on being searched. Besides, all they’d really have to do is read my blog do decide that though I am a nut job, I am an innocent nut job....

What is going to happen....

Like most nurses in California, I belong to a union. CNA, as a matter of fact. (California Nurses Association.). This is mandatory, to work at my hospital. My hospital is a member of a group of hospitals, and organization called Catholic Healthcare West. (CHW). I can (and have) transfer to other CHW hospitals, maintaining my senority, and, more importantly, my retirement funds. We, (nurses), contract with our hospital, usually every 3-4 years. When the contract is up, our union, and representatives from our hospital negotiate with the hospital grand poobah's for what we want our next contract to include. You can bet, we always want a raise. We always want safe staffing for our patients, and a host of other items that probably wouldn't mean a darn thing to you. Some of them are 'red herrings', things we don't REALLY want, but we have to have something to negotiate, right?

Well, a new trend in contract negotiation has been surfacing in the last few years. Instead of negotiating our small, tiny little contract with our small, tiny little hospital, CNA is negotiating ALL the CHW hospitals in Northern California. AT ONE TIME.
This means we are all for one, and one for all. If the hospital in say, Stockton, is not getting what they need, then, despite us getting what we need, we are going to strike. And it works vice versa. We all get a raise, or none of us get one. We all get better benefits..... and so on... and so forth.
There is power in numbers, and that is so. More than likely, I will get maybe, better things, because we are doing this.
We are, possibly, though, going to have a one day strike, on October 30th. We being all the CHW in Northern California, myself included. Its called an "informational picket". A chance for us to let the public know what we want, and why we've chosen to go on strike for one day. If agreement between the union, and the hospital can be reached before then, then we won't. If we DO strike, the hospital can lock us out of our jobs, for 10 days.
I am scheduled five of those 10 days.
Its kind of a nerve wracking thing. I totally support my union. If I didn't, what use would the union be?
Will the hospital lock us out for 10 days? Doubtful, they'd have to find other nurses to cross into our picket to do that. (if they lock us out, I assume we will still be picketing). Plus, since this is MULTIPLE hospitals, finding enough "scab" nurses would be a chore. A costly chore.
But I am still nervous about it. In my 13 years of nursing, this is the first time one of my contracts has come to this.
Its also the first time my contract has been negotiated with multiple other CHW contracts....

Sunday, October 18, 2009

2nd. Amendment

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

This is a loaded amendment. Pun intended.

As Julie Andrews once sang, "lets start at the very beginning". Militia. Well regulated. Putting ourselves briefly in the shoes of our forefathers, this is an obvious need. We were in the midst of our quest for independence. We knew, for a fact, that it would be a battle. No one expected England to just simply agree. "Oh, you want to be free? Sure, not a problem". Instead, they sent over many men, many red coats, and the intent to keep us under their rule. We expected this. Thus, the need for a militia. The ' well regulated' aspect of this amuses me, though I certainly understand that as well. If it isn't well regulated, then why bother?

So, modern day. Our "well regulated militia" has evolved, and morphed, into Reservests, and our national military.

But wait. It didn't stop there. Though I would argue about them being "well regulated", any Billy Bob in the outskirts of Pine Cone Flat, anystate, can form a "militia", and trust me, they have. Many right wing, anti government militia's are in existence today, planning for the collapse of our government. Many of them wanting to collapse our government, themselves…They call themselves many things, such as "Christian Identity" and "Sovereign Citizen Movement" just to name a few. Are these, usually hostile splinter groups what our forefathers had in mind when they made this amendment? I really think not. I think, actually, that they would be horrified at the direction this amendment has gone into.

Going hand and hand with this is the gun issue. The ownership and operation of guns, during the time this amendment was authored, was a necessity of life. Having a gun meant you, and your family would survive. It meant you would eat. It meant you were protected. A gun was a tool, as well as a weapon. Without one, well, you’d be hungry, at the very least.

As time has gone by, and we’ve advanced as a nation, the role of the gun has changed. It is no longer necessary to have one to put meat on the table. You don’t even have to HAVE meat on your table. Our dietary needs and requirements have changed. YES there are people out there who still hunt food for the family table. I know many of them. And though I personally don’t want to go shoot Bambi or Pumbaa, I hold with their rights to do so. (As long as bambi and pumbaa aren’t on the brink of extinction). The hunters I know are, for the most part, the most careful, and conservative of gun owners. They take care of their weapons, for their weapons are still tools to them. They also aren’t using semi automatic’s with cop killer bullets.

And this is where we get into trouble. No many how many laws are passed, with ten day waiting lists, and criminals banned from purchasing them, I maintain that ANYONE can get their hands on a gun. Any gun. You just have to know the right street to walk down, or the right person to talk to. No permit, no waiting. My Grandma could go out tomorrow on the streets of Fresno and get me an Uzi for my birthday if she so chose.

Yes, we have the right to bear arms. But bearing these arms lead to over 30,000 deaths a year in the United States. Granted, some of these are suicide deaths, but the major percentage of these are not.

The people getting these guns, legal or not, claim their right to defend themselves, and their homes. These are the same people who keep their guns in unsafe conditions, telling themselves that the gun has to be loaded, and within reach, to kill any intruder that might come into their home. They tell themselves that little Suzy or Stevie will never find them. Then they find themselves, explaining to the police why little Suzy shot Stevie in the head. Or why their teenager took said gun to school and shot the people who belittled him, year after year. Or why their depressed daughter is dead, by her own hand. We read these stories, every day.

And then we have the gangs. A militia, in their own way, as well. With guns. Where it’s normal, and encouraged, to find one or more of your rivals, and gun them down, despite the innocent bystanders that may live in the area. And in a gang, your gun is a major aspect of your identity. It has to be a good one. And you can be sure they are not getting their weapons from anyplace that requires a permit or waiting list. The trunk of the car requires none of these.

Gun control is a very sensitive topic, one that has been defended and discussed for decades. Once again, I could go on for days and days and days. This amendment, while practical, and needed during the era it was written in, has no gone completely awry, in my opinion. It has evolved beyond it’s intentions, and now does more harm than good.