An etherealgirl's Adventures in Cyberland

Thursday, June 30, 2005

new lessons from the old world

The European Model for Falling in Love with Your Hometown by Jay Walljasper notes some key differences between old world and new world city layouts:

What explains the fact that most European cities gracefully end at some point, giving way to green countryside at their edges, unlike the endless miles of sprawl in America? How is it that public life and street culture feel so much richer? Why do you seldom see slums?

Intrigued by these questions, I have returned to Europe over a number of years seeking answers. In scores of interviews with urban planners, transportation authorities, politicians, activists, and everyday citizens, I learned that a clear set of public policies accounts for the different spirit of European metropolitan centers. It’s not just the antiquity of the towns, but also the way people there think about urban life.


A fascinating article with some ideas on re-thinking the way our local environment can be improved.

Also another link with some great and innovative ideas: Project for Public Spaces: Placemaking for Communites.

Both links (and lots more really great ones as related to the subject, as well) found via Utne Webwatch Dwelling on Place News.

Posted by etherealfire :: 3:58 AM :: 0 Comments:

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Wednesday, June 29, 2005

harry reid masterminds brilliant compromise

Read all about his four Republican choices to fill Supreme Court vacancies via the link at What It Is Today.

Posted by etherealfire :: 10:01 PM :: 0 Comments:

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deep impact mission on target for July 4th

Jordy at Virtual|Matter's got the link to the Deep Impact Comet Mission targeted for a July 4th hit.

Posted by etherealfire :: 8:53 PM :: 2 Comments:

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jedi master

I can't help it; it's summer and I'm restless and I can't keep my mind on the dark side for extensive periods of time right now; if I do, I'm gonna lose it. So the posts you find interspersed within the blog right is probably going to be even more lightweight than usual... if that's really even possible.

Hence yet, another Star Wars based quiz (and more quizzes on the way tonight I fear ~ just can't seem to help myself right now):


how jedi are you?
:: by lawrie malen

very cool quiz found via Heidi at VirusHead

Posted by etherealfire :: 8:26 PM :: 0 Comments:

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reverberations from the echo chamber leaves me cold

Yes, I'm avoiding talking about the President's speech yesterday. To be honest, I'm just very so very sad and very weary of this pathetic situation that we find ourselves in and there is no glimmer of hope that straight talk will ever be forthcoming from this administration. Right now I'm at a pretty low point, just feeling drained and demoralized and in need of some R&R from all this nonsense. Unfortunately, that is luxury we pretty much can't afford right now though.

Time better spent would be to go sign a couple of petitions, one from Sen. Ted Kennedy calling for accountability and a better plan for success in Iraq and one from Wes Clark, a petition urging Chairman John Warner of the Senate Armed Services Committee to hold hearings on the Bush Administration's statements, policies, orders, and actions related to prisoner abuse.

You can find easy link accessibility to both, courtesy of Word Whammy's Two For One ~ Call for Action post here.

Posted by etherealfire :: 7:32 PM :: 0 Comments:

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a very cranky oracle :-)

I'm thinking this oracle has had just a little bit too much caffeine:



Oracle of Starbucks

Make sure you don't ask for a Classic Coke; evidently they don't serve them at Starbucks (no, I don't drink coffee). LOL!

found via Everybody Knows

Posted by etherealfire :: 7:19 PM :: 2 Comments:

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light sabre love

Your Amazing Yoda Sex Line


"When 900 years old you get, Viagra you need too, hmmmm?"



The Amazing Yoda Sex Line Generator


found via Etc.etc.etc.,blah,blah,blah.

Posted by etherealfire :: 7:08 PM :: 0 Comments:

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what mythical creature are you?



You scored as Angel.

Angel: Angels are the guardians of all things, from the smallest ant to the tallest tree. They give inspiration, love, hope, and positive emotion. They live among humans without being seen. They are the good in all things, and if you feel alone, don't fear. They are always watching. Often times they merely stand by, whispering into the ears of those who feel lost. They would love nothing more then to reveal themselves, but in today's society, this would bring havoc and many unneeded questions. Give thanks to all things beautiful, for you are an Angel.

Mermaid

75%

Angel

75%

Faerie

67%

WereWolf

59%

Dragon

17%

Demon

0%

What Mythological Creature are you? (Cool Pics!)
created with QuizFarm.com

quiz found via A Progressive Christian

Posted by etherealfire :: 8:27 AM :: 0 Comments:

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tagged ~ I'm it!!!!

Oh my gosh. I'm so excited! I actually got tagged to do a meme thingy and this is my very first time. (Yes, I *am* a dork!!!) So thanks Green Knight (YAY!) for tagging me and, here we go (I hope I'm doing this right)!!!

1. What were three of the stupidest things you have done in your life?

Without going into the specific details: Letting someone believe something untrue rather than clarifying it with them; then not owning up to my part in the omission because I was too afraid to admit that I knew it was wrong and I didn't want to take a stand. It was completely cowardly and I will never live it down. And it cost me a very dear friendship by the time it was all over with.

Passing up the chance to go to South America to see my Grandma because of money and time constraints; by the time I finally got there, it was years later and it was to attend her funeral. I'll regret that till the day I die. :-(

Quitting college the first time because everything I wanted to major in was considered a bad idea by everyone else, and they kept telling me that Engineering was the thing, and I didn't want to be one. So I kind of gave up and went to vocational school to become a Medical Assistant and didn't get back to school again for a very long time.

2. At the current moment, who has the most influence in your life?

My brave, beautiful, smart, kind, funny daughter whom I find has somehow suddenly grown up before my very eyes and has plenty of wisdom to share with me

3. If you were given a time machine that functioned, and you were allowed to only pick up to five people to dine with, who would you pick?

Carl Jung, Eleanor Roosevelt, Thomas Jefferson, Sarah Vaughn and Dane Rudhyar

4. If you had three wishes that were not supernatural, what would they be?

That everyone would agree to make protecting and nurturing children, the environment and eradication of hunger and poverty the highest priority. That peace would be something tangible because every nation made a firm commitment to it.

5. Someone is visiting your hometown/place where you live at the moment. Name two things you regret your city not having, and two things people should avoid.

Regret not having:
More prevalent and efficient mass transit; better air quality.

Avoid:
Driving the freeways at peak times; trying to negotiate the area without a map or really good directions.

6. Name one event that has changed your life.

Leaving Albuquerque and moving to Canada for nine months; at age 36 years old and had never been so far away from my parents (same for hubby). I think we actually both grew up and finally gained our independence from that move and for the first time in our marriage we really had each other and only each other as a source of support. It was an amazing and wonderfully empowering experience.

7. Tag 5 people.

Now this is really hard but I think I'm gonna go all~girlie with Deb, Janet, Heidi, habitatgirl and Chandra.

Posted by etherealfire :: 6:51 AM :: 8 Comments:

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some gave all

The Daily Blatt has some very telling maps and info here confirming what I'd already had more than a sneaking suspicion over:

"Not only do the Blue States pay the preponderance of taxes to the Federal government which then proceeds to spend most of its take in the Red States, it seems that the Blue States are also suffering a disproportionate share of the casualties from the Iraq war. I guess they figure what's some extra deaths of folks that weren't going to vote for them anyway, right.

And lest you wingnuts bleat that most of the military is Republican, well that's not true. Recent polls show that a majority of enlisted personel are Democrats while a similar percentage of the officers are Republican. So, who do you think has a greater chance of dying in combat, a general or a pfc. You do the math."


One thing I've been very aware of living here in South California; a great number of losses have been from residents of this state.

Your move, Mr. Rove.

Posted by etherealfire :: 6:33 AM :: 0 Comments:

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in the misummer of one's life

As always, one of my favourite astrologers, April Elliott Kent, has written a beautiful essay from the heart, called Slowing Down, Turning Around.

I look forward to her astrology updates so much because she really knows how to make it tangible and meaningful by sharing how it works in her own life. And she is an amazing writer!!! Go see for yourself!!!

Posted by etherealfire :: 3:43 AM :: 0 Comments:

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where's my ruby slippers?

This post at 2 Political Junkies will make you laugh through those tears of eternal frustration; or, at least it did me alot of good, anyway.


Now, if only I really could click my heels three times and wake up from this national nightmare...

Posted by etherealfire :: 12:48 AM :: 0 Comments:

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Tuesday, June 28, 2005

sweet scented stress busters

courtesy of AromaWeb.

My in~laws sent my a beautiful little aromatherapy chest with a diffuser, tea lights and several essential oils for Christmas a couple of years ago. A real luxury and so easy to use. But I've been looking to add more oils to the collection and this site has a recipe box with several blend options tailored to the effect you are looking to find.

My favourite essential oil that came in the box is the Sweet Orange Essence for soothing and calming the nerves; but I love it just as much for the gorgeous scent that fills the air. In fact, it has been a long day (and already) a pretty long week, so I'm enjoying the perfumed rarified air right now! Pure Heaven! And a lovely way to help me unwind.

And now that I'm getting so relaxed and the digital camera has become something easy to use, I will torture you with gratuitous, highly unnecessary photos, mainly because I can ~ and because I've become determined to try to get good at taking pictures and that means I'm foisting my so-so results of on you poor souls! :-p


The aromatherapy chest and diffuser that looks alot better in real life, temporarily stationed on my desk so I can enjoy the scent and practice taking pictures of it.

And while we're at it, please allow me to present my own special little piece of heaven, Joy Central:


my beautiful little eMac (Joy II) and my desk that is overcrowded with my computer/web design books (and inside the cabinet is part of my cherished astrology book collection) and lots of little objects of affection that have personal meaning.

More of my very favourite books are in the tall bookcase to my right and the short bookcase to my left (neither in the picture) along with the goldfish tank and the birds' house (also not in the picture... I'll save that for another day of torture), and still more of my most chereished books in the tall bookcase in my bedroom and (horrors!) in stacks on the floor on my side of the bed.

Too much information I know. I think I've inhaled too much sweet orange essence...

Finally, because I think it's just so pretty, here's my latest desktop:



which I found at Winaan's Designs; lots of lovely wallpapers there!

Posted by etherealfire :: 10:52 PM :: 0 Comments:

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breslin gets tough with the press

Gone from the papers, Breslin still packs a punch:

He ripped a culture that has gone mad with celebrity worship and ripped Big Corporate Media for being complicit in it while ignoring real issues, a real war and real people.

He brought up the name Donald Trump, and his raspy voice pierced like a scalpel: "In the old days, he'd have to pay a big pile to get in the papers as much as he does. Guys would say, `Where's mine?' Now, he returns a call and the reporter faints. … If he calls, hang up on him. That's if you're dumb enough to have a phone on your desk."

Breslin is infuriated with the way the ongoing war in Iraq is being covered, or not covered. "Does it even get mentioned?" he asked. "Our performance on the war is horrendous. This will be looked at for a long time as a journalistic failure."

He talked about a woman Army reservist in the Bronx with four children sent to Iraq. "Even in the worst of World War II, we had a 3A [draft] classification. You couldn't send a father with four kids to the war. Now it's all right. They said, `She only delivers mail, she just has to drive on the highways.' I said you must not read the papers. That's a fine place to be killed."

Posted by etherealfire :: 10:42 PM :: 0 Comments:

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an unconscionable statistic

U.S. Wastes $14 Billion in Food & Crops Every Year:

"Huge amounts of food are being wasted throughout the industry. A proportion of this waste is inevitable, but a large part of it can be eliminated and lead to increased profit, not only through cutting losses but also through increasing efficiency," said Dr Jones, an anthropologist at the University of Arizona's Bureau for Applied Research in Anthropology.

Dr Jones said discussions with some industry leaders are already underway to examine possible programmes that can be initiated to reduce losses and increase profitability.

He has proposed a Food Loss Center, a concept, he claims, supported by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), which would act as an information body for the industry, providing meetings and educational publications on how to reduce loss.

"The Center would coordinate educational programmes given by representatives of the most efficient sectors of the industry- such as supermarkets- to the least efficient groups- such as fast food restaurants," Dr Jones told BakeryAndSnacks.com.

"This would have long-term benefits for the entire industry. For example, if supermarkets help fast food restaurants-which use more than half of all meat in the U.S. --- to reduce beef losses, the beef industry will become more efficient, and supermarkets will get more efficient beef," he added.

Posted by etherealfire :: 9:40 PM :: 0 Comments:

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Saturday, June 25, 2005

anticipating the da vinci code

Just found a link to a very interesting Beliefnet interview with Bart Ehrman Unpacking the Da Vinci Code.

Although I'm pretty well convinced by the lack of evidence for an historical Christ at all, after reading The Jesus Mysteries and Jesus and the Lost Goddess (currently in progress), this interview with Bart Ehrman does make a distinction between fact and fiction with the Da Vinci Code. He makes an excellent point that unless one is readily familiar with those distinctions, it might lead one to blur the line between the two in reading the book, though Dan Brown has stated he has written a book of fiction based on bizarre facts.

The interview is very much worth the read but having just been exposed these two admittedly controversial, but highly sourced books, I find that with Ehrman's take on the early church, I'm struck not so much by what he has said, but what he appears to have left out. But I leave that to each individual to read, research and question... or not, as sees fit.

In any case, I enjoyed the book, I love the entire cast of this movie, Ron Howard knows how to make exciting movies and I got a thrill watching the trailer. I can't wait to see this movie next year!!!!

Posted by etherealfire :: 6:06 PM :: 7 Comments:

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Friday, June 24, 2005

what i did for summer solstice

I'm sorry I haven't been around so much lately, but the past couple of weeks have been crazy. Just as soon as Groucho's mysterious malady seemed to disappear (with medicine and a reallllly big vet bill) my poor little MacKenzie developed a post-grooming allergic reaction under both of his armpits and his little bottom. And because he already has some tricky medical problems and about a zillion medications to take, his situation is rather delicate, complicated... and yes, also very expensive... to deal with.

Having just returned from a vacation to New Mexico, by the time the solstice rolled around I was pretty much at my wit's end, and very ready for another one.

That prompted me to get together with hubby to set in motion an Anniversary mini-vacation (July 22-25) to Yosemite, following the Robert Plant concert in San Diego on the 21st!!! I think I can hold out till then.

Thank goodness, though, I have a lovely little mini-retreat to go and read, think, meditate and, sometimes, even cry in, my own little sanctuary right in our backyard. Around the solstice time it was a special blessing, especially since I've been worried sick over my babies the last several days.

I've also been trying to improve my point and click method with the digital camera and my sweet father-in-law even clued me in as to where the zoom button was and how to use it. :-P

So here's a batch of images that I hope won't slow the blog down too much.

Here's dear old Groucho, feeling so much better now, thank God/dess:



And here's my pobrecito, MacKenzie, with the enormous e-collar he has to wear right now:



But still somehow he manages to find a smile for me:



And here's our beautiful Golden Girl, Gwennie, enjoying a coveted spot in the back yard:



And here's a long view of my sanity spot:



And closer up, my lovely old bench sitting under my dear old tree:



A couple of magick spots in that sacred corner behind the old bench:





My bad-Monet flub up of a lovely bouganvilla:



And the one that finally worked (YAY!!!)



And here's old makeup~less, more ethereal than girl, me:



proving that my camera can endure great punishment HA!

Anyway, that's what has been going on around here lately. Summer is here and it is gorgeous and I want to enjoy every bit of it that I can. But I will still do my best to keep my blog updated much better than I have the last month or so.

Posted by etherealfire :: 6:13 PM :: 2 Comments:

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Monday, June 20, 2005

tell that to marty mcfly

Minding the Planet has a link pointing to this fascinating BBC Science article New model 'permits time travel':

If you went back in time and met your teenage parents, you could not split them up and prevent your birth - even if you wanted to, a new quantum model has stated.

Researchers speculate that time travel can occur within a kind of feedback loop where backwards movement is possible, but only in a way that is "complementary" to the present.


On a perhaps slightly different note (and a metaphysical one at that), I recently listened to a News from the Soul interview with David Icke (yes, that one, I listen to all kinds of out there stuff, I can't resist) and this interview was really interesting and doesn't go into all of that rather icky (pardon the pun; just can't resist it) illuminati stuff that may or may not be true, but is almost certainly too depressing for me to take in anything more than very small doses and with a very large grain of salt. But this really wasn't negative stuff at all, and though it might sound a little nutty to some people, alot of what he said in this particular conversation really resonated with me. Think internet, matrix and the unconscious collective; but it's not a doom and gloom sort of scenario. If you are open-minded, or really curious, check it out!

Posted by etherealfire :: 11:24 PM :: 0 Comments:

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jimmy page records rock'n'roll with jerry lee

Found this very cool little Japanese Jimmy Page fansite the other day, making me wish once again that I could read Japanese but in any case it features lots of lovely little bits of eye candy, and while I can't read the words, there are often links that lead to places where I usually can.

This was the first place that I found this link and the news that Jimmy had just recorded Rock and Roll with Jerry Lee Lewis for an upcoming all-star album entitled The Pilgrim.


Rock Radio.com has a blurb about it here.

And if you have a Window Media Player (which I don't because I can't bear the thought of downloading yet another player but I really may have to break down so I can hear this), you can hear a snippet of it by clicking the link on this page; the word is out that JP gives an amazing solo performance and I can only imagine that this collaboration between the pair of legends really rocks.

I'm adding The Pilgrim (due out in September 2005) to my current must-haves CD wishlist which includes The Foo Fighters In Your Honor (which BTW contains a guest appearance of JPJ playing mandolin on the cut Another Round) and Coldplay's X&Y.

Posted by etherealfire :: 3:17 PM :: 2 Comments:

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Sunday, June 19, 2005

happy father's day

Although this is late in the day, I hope it's not too late to wish all you wonderful dads out in cyberspace a Very Happy Father's Day!

happy father's day mouse
happy father's day gif courtesy of Teddy Bear's Gif Shop.


I hope my hubby had a pretty nice one ~ he got the dvds he wanted and we finally went to see Star Wars Episode III: The Revenge of the Sith at his request; he intentionally wanted to wait till now and avoid the crush of humanity that packed the theaters a few weeks back. I think he enjoyed it very much and I'm really glad.

I know this is silly because I certainly knew what to expect well in advance; it is after all the story of the well known fall of Anakin Skywalker ~ but watching it still left me numb and ~ this is totally dumb and I know it ~ really depressed. I knew it would affect me that way because I'm such a lightweight and that's one of the reasons if I had my way, I would have avoided seeing it under normal circumstances. But it was Father's Day, so.... I'll get over it in a few days.

Meanwhile my stomach is churning and my bones are aching and coming home and watching Episode 4 didn't really help much. Oh well... this too shall pass. And in the scheme of things, it is a pretty silly thing to get sick over; but then again, maybe the fact that the real world isn't the most comforting place, especially these days and I won't even get into the hard~to~ignore comparisons between the movie and the scary direction we seem to be headed in lately, is contributing to this yucky feeling I've got.

We finally rented The Aviator the other day, too; and though it really was a good movie, I think I'm in desperate need of a comedy right now, especially if it is the light and fluffy romantic kind, my favourite mindless indulgence. I think this might be just the thing; link found via the wonderful Twilight Cafe.

For the moment, I've settled for the next best thing; a new wallpaper found at the movie site, currently adorning my desktop:


Posted by etherealfire :: 9:59 PM :: 2 Comments:

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Saturday, June 18, 2005

i went back to new mexico

and all I can show for it is a couple of photos that I took with my digital camera that really don't do any justice to the beauty I was trying to capture. But it's all I've got so it will have to be good enough:

rio grande gorge
The Rio Grande Gorge captured from the Bridge (which would shake like crazy whenever a car drove across it, making me want to flee in terror)

a scenice view from highway 68
A view along Highway 68 that was totally spectacular as I experienced it, but lacking much in my attempt to capture that big beautiful vivid turquoise blue sky that so often haunts my dreams at night.

We didn't get to take the Enchanted Circle Scenic Drive this time around; in fact, we hardly got to stay very long in Taos at all. But the precious time we spent later on that week, riding around the back roads in the area between Moriarity and Santa Fe and especially between Galisteo and Madrid and then back through the mountains to Albuquerque was an enchanting experience that kind of made up for the briefness of each trip. In fact I found myself so caught up in the beauty of it all that I forgot to even attempt to get pictures of most of it.

Even so I did end up with quite a few pictures, but even the ones I took just really don't capture the visual beauty of it all and it is very frustrating; I guess I just need to work at getting better at it. In the meantime, this will have to do; at least I've got alot of vivid visual memories to supplement the not-so-great pictures.

Posted by etherealfire :: 2:30 AM :: 0 Comments:

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jp presents at mojo 2005 honours

This was what I was looking for yesterday:


Jimmy at the 2005 Mojo Honours courtesy of The Sun Online Slideshow.

And though the article doesn't state it, apparently Jimmy presented old friend Roy Harper (of Hats Off to... fame) with the Mojo Hero Award.

Posted by etherealfire :: 1:37 AM :: 3 Comments:

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40% of Americans are clueless

and 100% of Americans are paying the price for it:

Many Americans Call O'Reilly a Journalist.

Posted by etherealfire :: 12:56 AM :: 2 Comments:

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Friday, June 17, 2005

if you build it, they will come

Halliburton to build new $30 mln Guantanamo jail.
They may not be charged, but they will come. No potential enemy of the state left behind.

Gee. No conflict of interest there, eh Mr. Cheney?

Meanwhile, let us remember:

"Critics have decried the indefinite detention of Guantanamo detainees, whom the United States has denied rights accorded under the Geneva Conventions to prisoners of war. The prison was called "the gulag of our times" in a recent Amnesty International report...

...The Pentagon has said about 520 detainees from more than 40 countries are being held at the prison, without giving a precise figure."

Posted by etherealfire :: 10:45 PM :: 0 Comments:

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Thursday, June 16, 2005

jimmy receives mojo maestro award

YAY! (UMMM, just updated this post to say: ....WHOOPS! This was back in 2004 which I kinda already knew and promptly forgot...heh; actually I believe JP was a guest at this year's event, though, and I was looking too hard to capture that story and not hard enough at the actual date when I jumped on this last year's model of the event)

Story here.

Photo op is here:


courtesy mojo4music.com (thank you so much for making my night!)

Life is good again for the moment... that is all.... :-)

Addendum:

Per RH's June 15 diary entry, JP attended this event. Be sure to click on the art imitating art photo op of JP and Jim Marshall revisiting that famous Johnny Cash pic that Jim Marshall captured back in the day.

There; I think I redeemed my cluelessness a bit. And that's really all for now.

Posted by etherealfire :: 11:50 PM :: 2 Comments:

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DSM super~quick update

Just dropping in quickly to post an update. The initial test results for our kitty didn't show anything conclusive; we are currently trying to encourage his appetite with baby food, and now my little cairn terrier has developed a hot spot that needs close watching. The vet bills are going to be a nightmare but I hope that our kids will be better soon.

The blog makeover is done and just a quick note; I've created pop up windows for all my blog rolls and links that are accessible from either sidebar; and alternately for those who cannot or don't like to use pop-ups, there is a link to open up a new page instead.

I decided I needed to do it because my links list and blog rolls were so huge; but I didn't want to lose the easy access to those links because I use them like bookmarks for my own convenience. So if anyone is wondering what happened to something usually found in the sidebar, it has now been moved to a pop/non pop link instead. I hope that will work as well for others as it does for me.

I hope I will be able to get back to posting more regularly starting tomorrow but at the moment things are still kind of crazy around here.

Meanwhile, I'm totally grateful that Shakespeare's Sister and Last Day of My Life posted play-by-plays of the Conyers Hearing today since I was unable to catch it. Just follow the links to get the scoop!

Posted by etherealfire :: 8:02 PM :: 0 Comments:

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Wednesday, June 15, 2005

why?

The 15 Senators who have not signed the Anti-Lynching Bill found via Synaptic Junction Daily:

Lamar Alexander (R-TN) - (202) 224-4944
Robert Bennett (R-UT) - (202) 224-5444
Thad Cochran (R-MS) - (202) 224-5054
John Cornyn (R-TX) - (202) 224-2934
Michael Crapo (R-ID) - (202) 224-6142
Michael Enzi (R-WY) - (202) 224-3424
Chuck Grassley (R-IA) - (202) 224-3744
Judd Gregg (R-NH) - (202) 224-3324
Orrin Hatch (R-UT) - (202) 224-5251
Kay Hutchison (R-TX) - (202) 224-5922
Jon Kyl (R-AZ) - (202) 224-4521
Trent Lott (R-MS) - (202) 224-6253
Richard Shelby (R-AL) - (202) 224-5744
John Sununu (R-NH) - (202) 224-2841
Craig Thomas (R-WY) - (202) 224-6441

Posted by etherealfire :: 3:36 PM :: 3 Comments:

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waiting

I've had a pair of shocks the last couple of days. Our poor little kitty has apparently gotten very sick and had to go to the vet (and this is a stray cat who adopted us 7 years ago and only very very recently began to feel safe enough to stay in side the house for any length of time and therefore has never had any trips to the vet for any reason, before this) and... we've just discovered that the cat we've long thought to be a female... is actually a male cat!

I know this may sound ridiculous but in our defense, the vet didn't actually know for sure until she shaved the cat's belly and discovered that she had been neutered.

In any case, we are waiting the test results, but I may well not be around so much. The vet agrees that our cat is probably at least nine years old and since he has essentially been an outdoor cat and never had any vet treatment of any kind for most of that time, he has probably been exposed to everything under the sun. I'm having to face the fact that he may be very sick indeed and there is a very high probability that we can do little or nothing about whatever may be wrong. Needless to say, our family is very sad today and very anxious to hear back from the vet so we know what our game plan (if any) can be.

Male or Female, he was an angel who found us when we were still freshly grieving the loss of our first family cat, a beautiful (indoor) Manx kitty, named Miranda (she was 16 years old and we lost her to stomach cancer). It took alot for me, the control freak extraordinaire, to learn to accept and respect this beautiful cat's need to be independent. But I learned it. Learned to swallow my fears and accept that he was a free agent and he could conceivable disappear from our lives as quickly and as seamlessly as he entered it. That was the the deal and the price I knew we might ultimately have to pay for giving our hearts to him. It was a no-brainer that he was worth every bit of that price. The truth is that the heart really never has a choice anyway.

But over time, he became more and more willing to become a real member of the family. Though he was always in our front or back or side yards, it was only in the past year that he finally spent as much or more time inside the house as he ever did outside. Even so, we knew he would never willingly submit to a trip in our car...anywhere, and that most certainly included a trip to the vet. So we all kind of knew that the day might very well come when we made that trip; but if we did, it would mean that things were very serious indeed. That day finally came and now we wait for answers. I'm praying for a positive outcome...


Groucho on a lovely day basking in the sunshine and soaking up the warmth of the sidewalk

Posted by etherealfire :: 12:51 PM :: 0 Comments:

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terri schiavo autopsy released

Report here.

And I'm so certain that apologies to Michael Schiavo will be forthcoming from those who shamelessly exploited this sad sad case for their own twisted means to an end..... No? Sadly, since those who choose to make frivolous accusations (a la SwiftBoat liars et al) never ever fess up to the post-mortem deceits, I sincerely hope this story gets plastered all over the blogosphere as a reminder and a warning about the kind of low, vile jackals these people really are.

Found by following the links via Middle Earth Journal.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2005

sex, power & cocoanut cream pies

In catching up with the blogosphere I was dismayed to discover all that trouble in paradise; with this post, Meanwhile Back at the Ranch sums it all up nicely.

Hmmmm, all this talk of cocoanut cream pies and shaved/non-shaved talk has me immersed in a fantasy; I can't help it, just can't stop thinking about it so I'll fess up.

See, it involves this guy, Ginger and Mary Ann... and not a razor for the purpose of shaving in sight. Where am I in this??? oh, I just like to watch. I'm guessing the personal stock of any woman, even ones without properly groomed legs goes up very very high on a desert island, population 3, even if one of the three is our discerning fellow. Too bad for him that Ginger and Mary Ann are lesbians in this scenario. Ohhhh, the pain, the pain.....

:-)

Posted by etherealfire :: 11:06 AM :: 2 Comments:

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Flag Day: freedom isn't free

Today is Flag Day and also my little bro Rick's birthday. Happy Birthday to you little brother!

What does Flag Day really mean to our nation? I know what it means to me. Our beautiful flag is a powerful symbol, so much so that that it has often been hijacked by those who have employed a rather nasty habit of manipulatively wrapping themselves inside of it to justify any number of atrocities in the name of patriotism. This is the ultimate abuse of our flag and its true meaning. The truth is that you'd be better off burning the flag than disgracing it with such deceitful and ugly justifications. I am NOT encouraging that anyone do that; not in the least ~ but the American flag flies because it represents the will of the people. This revolutionary idea is so important it bears repeating: our flag represents our free will, our very right to be free to have our voices heard.

Our flag is the ultimate symbolic representation of the rights to the hardwon freedoms our nation enjoys, including first and foremost, freedom of speech. Any time that a symbol becomes more precious than the flesh and blood individuals it represents, the whole point of its true meaning has been lost and that very symbol has been dishonoured. Any time a national symbol is used to try and justify immoral, unethical, jingoist behaviours and attitudes, the true beauty of that symbol is desecrated and its meaning is lost. Flag Day, for me, is the opportunity to reflect on the real meaning of our flag and to celebrate the reason for its existence.

Some 229 years ago (as of July 4, 2005), a group of foresighted free-thinkers (indeed at the time, they were considered ultimate dissentors and rabble rousers by the establishment) had the audacity to believe that a government ought to represent the will of its people; they believed that We the People had the basic and inherent right "to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness". They believed in it enough to dissent to attain it and to fight, and if necessary, to die in defense of it.

They understood what it meant to have no control of their own destiny; what it meant to have no autonomy and no right to make decisions that would benefit the people who resided there. They understood that repression and powerlessness was an intolerable existence for a people and they had the vision and the courage to dare to dream of a revolutionary new government that would free its people and give them a real voice.

Our beautiful flag was created to represent this new government and the citizens that she emancipated. The road to that freedom has always been a hard and bumpy ride. As our nation struggles to grow up and grow into the great nation we have the potential to become, the most mature and farsighted among us have always understood the larger and foresighted meaning of our revolutionary American Experiment; and they were often the first to lead the way, when the need to modify our understanding of national freedom became necessary: the abolishment of slavery, women's right to vote are the two modifications of that understanding that come to mind immediately.

We are still struggling to this very day as we learn to grow into the larger meaning of what it truly means to be a free nation and how best to be a beacon of light and hope to the rest of the world. Our flag is the symbol of that great hope. It is why I love our flag so very much.

There is a popular saying, often heard on the right: "Freedom isn't Free". I won't argue that at all; not one bit. And to our soldiers, the warriors of the past and present who have fought in the name of that freedom, we owe so very much. More than anything else, we owe them this: we must ALWAYS ensure that they are only called to serve us for the most ethical reasons. To do anything less is an insult to their service and a disgrace to our nation and everything it represents.

No, Freedom isn't Free. To use a quote from the current President, you might say, "It's hard work." And the very hardest work of all is the owning up to the responsibility of each and every citizen of this great nation of ours: We must live up to the symbol of our flag by doing the hard work of keeping ourselves informed and working for the highest national integrity that we can muster. We MUST SPEAK OUT against injustice; we MUST hold our nation to the HIGHEST STANDARDS of integrity. If we do not do this, we are not living up to our part of the bargain.

No, Freedom isn't Free. And taking it for granted is just about the most surefire way to lose it. And that is an insult to those who died to create and protect those freedoms; it's an insult to our Constitution.

And it is the ultimate insult to our flag, the symbol of that noble cause, that beacon of hope.


Posted by etherealfire :: 9:12 AM :: 0 Comments:

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DSM Updates

Get the latest via this post at Shakespeare's Sister.

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Monday, June 13, 2005

the timeline to the invasion of Iraq

Raw Story is providing an informative Path to the Iraq War Timeline as well as verifying the authenticity of the original sources of several relevent PDF links which can also be reviewed at After Downing Street Dot Org.

Get informed and go check out the growing evidence of a clearcut agenda by this administration to get us into Iraq by any means possible.

Posted by etherealfire :: 8:36 PM :: 0 Comments:

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howard dean speaks for me

If he does for you, please support him by signing the petition showing your support!

Found via 42.

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blog housekeeping update

And now it is back to work on the blog makeover and also in the works is getting the BBA blogroll up and running as well. Famous last words but I hope... finally to get this all done by tonight sometime... here's hoping. Meanwhile, along with all the wonderful readworthy blogs listed on my admittedly immense sidebar list, you can access the latest BBA bloglist right here!

Posted by etherealfire :: 5:07 AM :: 0 Comments:

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memogate hearings scheduled for June 16th

Catching up with the latest news via this post at After Downing Street Dot Org.

For those interested in attending a June 16th rally to support this congressional effort, please keep checking back with After Downing Street Dot Org for further details.

June 16: answer the questions about the downing street memo now

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Jimmy Page awarded OBE

I'm back, I'm exhausted but I have to make a quick post because while I was driving the beautiful backroads of New Mexico, my number one crush and rock n roll hero, Jimmy Page was honoured with an OBE for his charity work with wife Jimena on behalf of the ABC Trust... and I suppose I'm the last to know but I have to commemorate it here, better late than never!

Two more related links found here and here.

Jimmy Page at the Grammys Feb 2005
JP at the Grammys~any excuse by me to post a photo will do :-)
found at Yahoo photos

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Thursday, June 02, 2005

going home

About a week ago I was wrestling with an extremely potent combination of major guilt and an aching homesickness and pretty much convinced that there was absolutely nothing I could do about it.

Now I suddenly find that in a few hours I will be heading back home to Albuquerque!!! And I can't wait to see my family, but because it was just such short notice I've been scrambling around trying to get a million things done.

I feel bad for neglecting my blog so much and I still haven't gotten my blog completely tweaked and set up for its new look which is just so frustrating but unless some miracle happens between finishing up my vacation preparations and finding the time to rest and make a miraculous completion of the tweaking, it will have to wait till I get back.

I'm also probably not going to have much opportunity if any at all to blog for the next two weeks and so I just wanted to let everyone know that my blog isn't dead and I will be back online and ready to link with joyous abandon in approximately two weeks if not before! Until we meet again, beautiful people, be happy and stay strong and proud. And May the Force Be With You All! See you in a couple of weeks!

Posted by etherealfire :: 12:26 AM :: 3 Comments:

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Wednesday, June 01, 2005

update: O'Neil memo

I just found a very important heads up link in the comments of my previous post from the author of my fav blog reads, Where the Dolphins Play.

There is yet another memo that everyone needs to be made aware of: The O'Neil Memo ~ link posted via Where the Dolphins play; click here to find out more.

And thanks to my blog bud, dolphin, for letting me know about it!

It's really important for all of us to stay aware of and informed about what is going on, especially right now, when every single day there seems to be new allegations of disturbing happenings surrounding this administration as well as the legislative branches of government.

Posted by etherealfire :: 11:48 PM :: 0 Comments:

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