Friday, October 31, 2008

A couple of videos

Oh my God, noooo! But...but I mailed in my vote two weeks ago! *sobs inconsolably*

I love viral ads like this and I think Obama has used them to great effect this election.

I also think his "infomercial" was sedate to the point of dull, and that's exactly how he wanted it. Nothing at all in it that could seem "Marxist" or "terrorist." A lot that said "presidential" and "stable."

And a final thought:

It's McCain's zombie grin that gets me in this one.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Obama's natty fashion choices

Hm, I made an amusing post about cultural misunderstandings in class, but Blogger has eaten my witty words and now they are as if they never were.

So you get this instead--a photo my mother took of a political billboard near my home in Maine:

What a world, what a world.

I think it's the cheery jack o'lanterns in the back that get me. And you know what? I still find Barack Hussein Obama the Terrorist Muslim, with his downcast eyes and pensive look, more appealing than John Sidney McCain the War Hero, with his clenched fists and accentuated crotch.

I filled out my absentee ballot today, by the way, and will mail it proudly tomorrow.

Saturday, October 11, 2008


It was a strange day weather-wise, starting drizzly and damp, becoming sunny and beautiful, and then the wind picked up and gusted clouds in. It matched my mood as well.

October is a transitional month, getting ready for winter and the long darkness. Novembers have traditionally been bad months for me--for some reason, every kind of tragedy and inconvenience seems to wait until November to strike me. So October has an uneasy feeling, tense. Uncertain. I feel the urge to store up against the coming cold, like a squirrel stores nuts. But you can't store up light and happiness, security and creativity. They're liquid assets, they trickle through your life like water and are gone, beyond your power, only to rush back up when you feel certain the springs are dry forever.

Obviously changeable weather makes me wax poetic!

Thursday, October 2, 2008


Oh, threaded comments. Threaded comments, how I will miss you. But the program that was threading my comments was apparently making it impossible to get alerts, so comments were going entirely unnoticed by me. So I reverted to the old template and discovered that wiped all the old comments, so I'm in a bit of comment mourning at the moment. *mopes*

A culture-shock moment to make the post more worth reading: we went out to dinner with our neighborhood to a Chinese buffet. There were plates and plates of...stuff, heaped high with...things. All entirely unlabeled. And Dan and I were the only people unfazed by this--everyone else just happily ate anything that looked kind of interesting. Only Dan and I poked at everything and debated: "Is this fish? Chicken? It's not tripe, is it?" (We ordered tripe by accident once. It's...chewy). When we asked our neighbors, they shrugged and kept eating: "Why do you even ask?"

Our Japanese friends seem able to consume just about everything without knowing or caring what it is. I would blame our squeamish caution on growing up in a country that's hyper-aware of food allergies, but I think it's really just a need to know what it is we're putting in our mouths.

At the other extreme, there's a lot less squeamishness here about detailing exactly where one's food comes from. Groceries usually have cute little anthropomorphic pictures of the animals in question--"Hi, I'm Kimiko Cow, and the flesh you see in front of you belonged to me!" We went to a pork cutlet restaurant only to find it festooned with pictures of Babe, the adorable pig. Talk about off-putting!

In English, of course, we even distance ourselves from our meat linguistically--we don't eat cows, pigs, and sheep, we eat beef, pork, and mutton. Baby cows are veal. We don't like to think about those baby cows at all, much less have them hawking themselves to us in the supermarket. There's a wonderful scene in Douglass Adam's "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" where the main character goes to an exotic intergalactic restaurant and is confronted by a talking cow-waiter explaining which parts of itself were particularly tender tonight. After the rest of the table orders the cow says "I'll just nip off and shoot myself now" and wanders off after reassuring the horrified main character, "Don't worry, sir, I'll be very humane." It's hysterically funny, but in a very black sort of way, and touches on a truth about Western eating--we usually don't like to be faced with the reality that we're taking a life to sustain our own.

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