Archive for July, 2005

She’s Baaaack…

July 31, 2005

Just got home from our lil’ trip out of town. They wanted a buck a pop to dial local calls from the hotel room, and I don’t even want to know how much they wanted for the in-room high speed internet connection… thus, I’ve been offline this whole time.

Much more about the trip later… but we’re home safe, more or less. And completely fried. So I think it’s going to be a very early night here in the land of the CrankyBeach.

Ta-ta for now!


Yay Ith!

July 25, 2005

While minding her own business, she got a trackback from Michelle Malkin!

Woo-hoo! You go, girl! Let’s hope a Michelle-a-lanche is in the making here!

Differing Opinions

July 25, 2005

Someone told me today that both she and another person (both of whom shall remain nameless) consider the New York Times* to be an authoritative source.

My response? “May God have mercy on your souls.”

* Registration required. Bugmenot is your friend.

Making A Run For It

July 25, 2005

I am off at oh-dark-hundred Tuesday morning for a well-deserved and long-overdue vacation, albeit for less than a week…. Sigh. I really hate being indispensible.

I may or may not be able to blog from where I’m going.

Eclectra, if you have anything you’d like to share with the world at large between now and Sunday night, feel free to jump in!

For The Rest Of You…

July 22, 2005

Friends, relatives, here’s your chance to play the game.

Have you read anything on this blog that I hadn’t already told you in person, on the phone, or via e-mail? Or that you hadn’t witnessed firsthand?

Raise your hands if the answer is yes.

Hmm. That’s what I thought.

Do You Know Who I Am?

July 22, 2005

No, I am not a celebrity trying to get preferential treatment in a restaurant. I am asking an honest question.

Personal friends and relatives, you are not eligible to answer this.

The rest of you… Do you know who I am? Do you have the slightest idea where I live and work, or how old I am? Let me see a show of hands.


Hmm. I see.

Just curious.

Kilabe Is Bored

July 22, 2005

And thanks to his boredom, we have this:

You are elegant, withdrawn, and brilliant.
Your mind is a weapon, able to solve any puzzle.
You are also great at poking holes in arguments and common beliefs.

For you, comfort and calm are very important.
You tend to thrive on your own and shrug off most affection.
You prefer to protect your emotions and stay strong.

Hat tip: Kilabe, who is dependable, popular, and observant.

Makes You Think

July 20, 2005

Many years ago, my oldest sister had a high school friend (“Big Sis”) who had one younger sibling (“Little Sis”). I have a few vivid memories of Big Sis, even though I can’t have been more than about 9 years old the last time I saw her. She was quite a character.

Fast forward 8 years or so. I remember Little Sis from high school. She was a freshman when I was a senior, and I don’t think I ever actually spoke to her, but I knew who she was because I remembered her sister, and it crossed my mind at the time to wonder how someone whose only sibling had been brutally murdered could actually be walking around school in an upright position.

Big Sis, age 23, was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and met her end at the hands of a notorious serial killer who did unspeakable things to his victims. His body count and methods made Charles Manson look like an amateur.

Fast forward some more. This past week we have been receiving resumes and interviewing candidates for the young-un’s job, as she is leaving us. (We hired a very well-qualified candidate today, and she starts on August 1, but that’s beside the point.) One of the last resumes to come in was that of –you guessed it– Little Sis.

Her qualifications and experience are far above what we do, and she has not done medical billing. I gave her a courtesy call, which I did not do for other candidates I wasn’t going to interview, and left a message on her voice mail letting her know that I appreciated receiving her resume, and that with her qualifications she should be in Washington straightening out the federal government, not doing medical billing. I mentioned that she and I have a connection because we were in high school at the same time, and our older sisters had been friends.

She called me back soon after, and we had quite a conversation. She vaguely remembered my name, wasn’t sure she remembered my older sister, and was going to check the yearbooks. She was very glad to hear from me because now that both of her parents have passed on, there are fewer and fewer people out there who remember Big Sis.

I cannot imagine what her life has been like. She said she lost a lot of friends back in the day because people either didn’t know what to say to her, or said really inappropriate things, so her social interaction was pretty stunted for a while. She is one of those people you hear about who goes before the parole board every few years to do whatever she can to keep her sister’s killer in prison, so far with success.

Not long ago she had a bit of a verbal run-in with someone who subscribed to the philosophy that there is no such thing as true evil. I will not describe the serial killer’s methods, but if that is not evil, then I’m Jimmy Carter. And she had another person who knew the history actually tell her that everything that happens in our lives is somehow caused by us. Excuse me? Someone explain how a mere adolescent caused a serial killer to brutalize her big sister. Needless to say, neither one of us buys that line of reasoning.

And yet, despite having gone through what she has, the loss of her sister and the unthinkable damage it did to her and her parents, she seems like a positive and mostly upbeat person. More power to her. What doesn’t destroy us makes us stronger.

After I get back from my vacation (just in time to start training our new hire) and have a chance to catch my breath, we’re going to get together for coffee or something. She wants to hear everything I remember about her sister. Alas, it isn’t very much. I wish I remembered more than I do.

Oh, and does anyone know of a job opening for a high-powered accountant/financial analyst/collections specialist? I have her resume on my desk….

So Long, Old Friend

July 20, 2005

Timecon 1986, San Jose, California

Jimmy Doohan will be sorely missed.

I will never forget the time he took Mary and Kerry and me to dinner in Los Angeles, at a nice Italian restaurant called Matteo’s. That was about 1987. He was in his element, surrounded by three ladies. Other restaurant patrons kept ordering more coffee, more wine, more desserts, just to hang around and try to overhear our conversation.

My condolences to his wife Wende, and to his children and extended family.

Fred Is Not A Bore

July 18, 2005

Fred is a college professor, a member in good standing of the left coast branch of the vast right wing conspiracy, and has every legitimate reason in the world to be a totally boring academic type.


His subject? Nuclear nonproliferation. I said, can you explain that in about 10 words, in layperson’s terms? He said, to keep nuclear weapons out of the hands of bad guys, and in the case of bad guys who already have ’em, it’s to either bomb ’em or bribe ’em.

I said, so how did a nice boy like you get into a racket like that? He said, he had originally planned a career in the hard sciences, but during the Carter administration, he saw how screwed up US foreign policy was, so decided to take a different direction. He specialized in the Soviet Union–and within a month of getting his PhD, the Soviet Union collapsed. (We suggested that they rolled over and collapsed because they saw him coming.)

After that explanation, which took well under 5 minutes, he steered the conversation to more general topics, and insisted that since it was the weekend, he didn’t want to be a professor, and would far rather be stupid.

How many professor types have YOU known who, given the conversational opening we gave Fred, would have monopolized the conversation and lectured for the next 3 hours or so?

So, just in case anyone was wondering–Fred is not a bore. I thought y’all might like to know.