Not in the clamor of the crowded street, not in the shouts and plaudits of the throng, but in ourselves, are triumph and defeat.--Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

REDIRECT ALERT! (Scroll down past this mess if you're trying to read an archived post. Thanks. No, really, thanks.)

Due to my inability to control my temper and complacently accept continued silliness with not-quite-as-reliable-as-it-ought-to-be Blogger/Blogspot, your beloved Possumblog will now waddle across the Information Dirt Road and park its prehensile tail at http://possumblog.mu.nu.

This site will remain in place as a backup in case Munuvia gets hit by a bus or something, but I don't think they have as much trouble with this as some places do. ::cough::blogspot::cough:: So click here and adjust your links. I apologize for the inconvenience, but it's one of those things.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Midday Wrap-up!

I sure wish I had one of those nifty things that would automotically transcribe spoken comments into text--you know, a secretary. In any event, in amongst all the various monontonous typing of monontonous meeting minutes, I have had a chance to check the e-mail and such and thought I would throw this stuff out there for you to look at.

First up--was dressing as fast as I could this morning while watching the Wendy Garner Show and wasn't really paying attention as I should, and overheard her saying something about an art event that she would be emceeing this weekend. Being all arty and such, I jotted her a quick note this morning after I got to work to ask for a repeat of the information. She responded graciously as always, and directed me to the website of a group called--

[...] VSA Arts of Alabama. It's a non profit organization that helps people with disabilities get involved with the arts. Sunday night will be their "Art Partners Auction." This pairs children with disabilities with a local artists and their work is then auctioned off that night. [...]

Thanks, Miss Wendy! For those who want more information about this group, the web address is http://www.vsartsalabama.org/home.html It sounds like a great organization, and I wish them great success on their auction.

Next up, a message from Stan the Goverment Man, who works over in the Big White Building Behind The Convention Center, who makes note of this AP article about the arrest of Kamran Akhtar, an illegal immigrant who had been videotaping buildings in and around Charlotte, Dallas, Austin and New Orleans. Noting the headline of the article, Stan says:

Apparently there are now some concerns about a possible attack on skyscrapers in the South--not just New York or L.A. I am still hoping B'ham is under the radar, but who knows? We ALL need to be vigilant and ready to act if we see a possible threat.

I think Stan is right--up to now, terrorists have been concentrating on the big cities because that's the image of the US in the minds of most of the world--New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington--each handily represent the evils of the Great Satan. But at some point they must surely begin to realize that there are other targets that are less well protected and just as effective at sowing terror among the general population. America's a big place, with more than four big cities, and more than four skyscrapers. Although they might be suffering from terrible delusions about their righteousness, the men who are planning these attacks aren't stupid. Like their petty criminal brothers, they understand that if you have a choice of robbing a cop or robbing an old woman, you go after the old woman.

In an open, free, society, there is simply no way to protect every single citizen from these psychopaths, if we allow them to wander about unimpeded. The only alternative is to start living in bunkers, or hunt them down and put them in a place where they are no longer a threat. Like a hole. A deep one. With several feet of concrete on top. Sorta like a bunker, I suppose, except with no lights or air conditioning. Or air.

I prefer the latter course, although I realize it's untidy and unpleasant and liable to damage the self esteem of certain jihadis. Although I am sure there are some of these men who are able to be reasoned with, the vast majority will not enjoy life here on this earth until every infidel is dead. Some folks might want to try to have a nice sit-down-and-chat-over-hot-tea-and-a-hookah session with someone like that, but as long as you women keep thinking you should be able to go around without a burka, and as long as you Jews keep insisting on existing, and as long as you silly people keep insisting that the Constitution is a better social law than the Koran, well, you're not going to make much headway.

As for Birmingham, I am hoping that with our high concentration of ATF, FBI, NSA, and FEMA regional offices that we should have a slightly more elevated sense of what's going on around us. Could be wrong, but self-preservation tends to keep these guys on their toes.

Finally, an update on Miss Reba's Almighty Chest Distress. As we last heard, there was the potential that she was suffering from a slight cardiac enlargement, so she was scheduled for an echocardiogram last week. The results of that test came back Friday, and they were normal. She is still pained, though, so the doctor believes it might be an inflammation of her chest wall, and has her on another medication now. (And the Prevacid has been dropped.) I related this to Supplier of Questions Jim Smith, and noted that there's really no way to check this diagnosis other than to keep taking the medicine and see if it gets better. Jim says:

Don't like that as a diagnostic method. Any chance of some of this being triggered by panic attack type stuff? She is getting to an age where changes can start to occur-- earlier rather than later.

Indeed so, and Reba and I both (as well as the doctor) think it's stress-related. She has a very difficult time telling people she is too busy, and thinks that it's her job to do as she's told. (Imagine that!) I, on the other hand, have managed to evolve my time management skills to the point where no one asks me to do anything anymore. I related this to Jim, who sent back a very perceptive reply--

That is kind of what I was getting at but didn't want you to feel I was questioning her mental state. It would appear from the outside, her plate is overly full. A large busy family, church, job that she can get wrapped up in, stress of looking for something else, back to school? And then there is always you, no offense.

Huh? Who, me?!

She has way too many roles with conflicting demands and expectations. I'm also going to guess there is some ambiguity as to the role requirements and expectations and that Ms. Reba does not handle ambiguity that well. Either way, you have a stressed out woman on your hands.

As I said, pretty perceptive. Miss Reba knows it, too, and has been trying to do better at saying no to further demands on her time, but it's hard for her.

Luckily for her, as she came out of the bathroom this morning en dishabille and leaned across the bed to play with Catherine, I was able to conduct a thorough visual inspection of her condition while she was thus distracted and am happy to report that her chest certainly looks good on the exterior. As a bonus, I was also able to use the dresser mirror behind her to verify that she does have an extreme case of callipygia.

Man, being a doctor is fun.

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