Friday, July 28, 2006

American Thermidor

American Thermidor
"...There is a strong sign that the political tide has turned, away from the 25 year belief that "a tax cut is a pay raise" – and towards the belief that a market owned by corporations isn't really free."

Amen. More here.

I'm embarrassed that I had to look up Thermidor.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006


I have been feeling rather insecure about clothing lately. I think there are several factors involved:
a) It's summer. I usually hate summer fashions. They show too much skin for office wear (IMO), and I also hate the usual summer colors, which are way too "cotton candy" for my taste, which runs toward more muted colors. Never mind that I really hate current fashions, too -- way too late '70s/early '80s. I remember that stuff the first time around, and had to wear them as thrift-store buys in early high school days, so I associate those styles with penny-pinching and tight budgets, never mind that they're just plain ugly.

b) There's a contingent of young, skinny, fashionable girls in my office, and I feel like an elephant next to them, because, at 5'7" and with fairly wide shoulders/hips, I'll never be that willowy, even if I dropped 20 lbs. I've also never been that fashionable, even when I was their age. (Yes, this is really more about my state of mind than about them; so it's fixable.)

I used to get the J. Jill catalog, but they stopped sending them to me because I couldn't bring myself to pay that much for their clothing. They make beautiful stuff, but it has always seemed too expensive to me. Another thing that put me off (which is silly) is that they seemed to be marketing to "women of a certain age". I think, however, that I'm going to start keeping an eye out for sales and shopping for their clothes on Ebay. Their styles are (relatively) timeless and graceful, and probably won't need fall out of fashion too quickly.

And, well, at 37 years old, maybe I am a "woman of a certain age." Nothing wrong with that.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Twit Olympics

It's becoming more and more obvious that our Dear Leader is the American equivalent of the Upper Class British Twit. Also see RW's comments at Cunning Realist about what it means to be a legacy -- social promotion, being given a "pass" even when you don't deserve it. Obviously ok for the upper classes, not so much for everyone else.

Joss Whedon's Strong Women

Monday, July 17, 2006

Sake review

Ok, I'm not a sake connoiseur. We drink the house brand when we go out. I'm much more conversant with single malt scotch.

That being said, I went out with friends last Saturday to a sushi restaurant that had a pretty extensive (and expensive) sake list, and we decided to buy two bottles to see what they were like. One bottle was unfiltered sake, which I hadn't tried before; the other was a filtered sake that was said to have won awards. Both were served cold. Neither was very good.

Here's what we bought:
Nigori Sake
Snow Beauty
Product of Nishinomiya Hyogo, Japan
Produced by Tatsuuma-Honke Brewing Co.
Alcohol: 15-15% by volume

Hakushika Junmai Ginjo
Product of Nishinomiya, Japan
Produced & Bottled by
Tatsuuma-Honke Brewing Co.
Alcohol: 15-15% by volume

The problem with the unfiltered sake is that it tasted pasty to me -- but also had such a strong taste that it was difficult to drink. The pasty texture reminded me of pepto bismol.

The filtered sake had less taste than I'm used to in sake. Maybe it's because it was served cold -- that might tone down the "nose" on the sake. It really was overwhelmed by the sushi, though, which is not a good thing.

We wound up mixing the two half-and-half to get something palatable, which is probably a major crime in Japan. But at least we got through dinner.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Funny tshirts

Wednesday, July 05, 2006



I'm listening to the one on "Doubt" right now. The speaker just mentioned that Zen doesn't really encourage too much self-examination, because you get too caught up in a swirl of thoughts and feelings and it distracts from the practice of mindfulness (awareness).

Sounds true (for me, anyway). I get pulled into that vortex very easily; it's unproductive. Better just to drop it and move forward.