Category Archives: Global Warming

Did I Miss a Contest?

It’s John’s fault.  Not long after we started dating, John got me hooked on contests when he won one.  A free, all expenses paid trip for two to the UK in 1986!  Seriously!  It was right after the Lockerby bombing, and nobody was going to England.  So British Airways held a contest to give away all tickets to London on one day in June.  And John won.

I didn’t win.

I never win.

I always enter, though. No matter what the contest. As soon as I find out about a raffle, a sweepstakes, a lottery, I’m in.  Take my money.  Please.

So I must admit that I was a little bit miffed when I logged on to one of my favorite news websites — Talking Points Memo today.  Because apparently there is a contest I missed.

A contest to see who can be the biggest asshole.

Did you see some of the things that were done to “celebrate” Independence Day?

There was the editorial in the WestView News — a New York newspaper (WTF? — New York?)

Charming.  Even if it was meant ironically.  Photo credit, West View News.  Assholes

Charming. Even if it was meant ironically. Photo credit, West View News. Assholes

 

Then, there was that parade in Nebraska.  Now tell me, what parade is complete without honoring our president:

Nope.  No racism here.  No disrespect meant, I'm sure.  Assholes.

Nope. No racism here. No disrespect meant, I’m sure. Assholes.

 

But to me, at least for today, the folks who win the contest for the biggest asshole in the country are these guys:  the “Coal Rollers.”  Assholes who modify the emission controls on their diesel vehicles to spew huge clouds of exhaust — ON PURPOSE!  As it says in one of the articles I read on TPM,

Truckers essentially trick their vehicles into thinking they need to use more gas than it actually needs. The more fuel that’s used up, the more exhaust comes out thus the big plumes of dark emissions from a “rolling coal truck.”  According to Daily Digest News, turning a truck into a rolling coal truck can cost as much as $5,000.

Just how much money would you be willing to spend to show just how big an asshole you can be?

They direct their exhaust towards Prius drivers, bicyclists, well, really towards anybody who might not be burning quite as much fossil fuel and/or emitting quite so much CO2 as they are.  They’re doing it because they hate Obama and want to demonstrate just how much.

Yup.  Today, Coal Rollers win the prize.  They are the biggest assholes.

And they’ve cured me of my fascination with contests.  Because I’m never going to top these assholes.

 

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Filed under Adult Traumas, Awards, Climate Change, Conspicuous consumption, Criminal Activity, Disgustology, Global Warming, GOP, Huh?, Hypocrisy

Left vs. Right — You Choose

In the left corner, representing us, we have a true statesperson:  Senator Elizabeth Warner:

When was the last time the anarchy gang called for regulators to go easier on companies that put lead in children’s toys? Or for inspectors to stop checking whether the meat in our grocery stores is crawling with deadly bacteria? Or for the FDA to ignore whether morning sickness drugs will cause horrible deformities in our babies?

When? Never. In fact, whenever the anarchists make any headway in their quest and cause damage to our government, the opposite happens.

    …

Why do they do this? Because the boogeyman government in the alternate universe of their fiery political speeches isn’t real. It doesn’t exist.

 Government is real, and it has three basic functions:
1.    Provide for the national defense.
2.    Put rules in place rules, like traffic lights and bank regulations, that are fair and transparent.
3.    Build the things together that none of us can build alone – roads, schools, power grids – the things that give everyone a chance to succeed.

    …

 We are alive, we are healthier, we are stronger because of government.

And in the other corner, we have John Boehner and the Tea Party Tizziers:

Elections Matter!

*     *     *

My thanks to the Stephen D at the Daily Kos for the video link to Senator Warren (my hero).

And my thanks to one of my favorite blogging buddies, Frank of A Frank Angle for Groucho.

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Filed under Bloggin' Buddies, Campaigning, Climate Change, Criminal Activity, Disgustology, Elections, Global Warming, Gun control, Health and Medicine, History, Huh?, Humor, Hypocrisy, Law, Mental Health, Politics, Stupidity, Taking Care of Each Other, Voting, Wild Beasts

WHOAH!!!! What happened?!?!

I admit, I’ve been doing a whole lot of this lately

 

Google Image, I'm sure

Google Image, I’m sure

 

But I was surprised how in two months during which I did almost no political posts whatsoever, that the world could have possibly gotten its knickers in a such twist.  Gone end-over-end.  Topsy Turvey.  All akimbo.

Two months ago, my company got two projects that would take us four months each to complete.  Both were due in two months.  Both got done.  I’ve been busy.

And I haven’t been paying attention.  I promise not to let that happen again.

Boy did I miss a whole lot.  I heard that they Congressman Issa cleared up that whole Benghazi thing!  And that Russia kept us out of war in Syria!  Somebody let me know if they admitted we’re doomed because of global climate change, ‘kay?

But the thing that has me most confused?

Apparently the country went from one where the GOP, the Republicans were interested in sticking things into women’s vaginas,

 

Yea, they like to do that.
(Google image)

 

Into one where it’s the proponents of the Affordable Healthcare Act

aka Obamacare — that want to do that!

Really!  Just look’ee here:

 

 

Only this time, they’re not just targeting the womenfolk.  They’re going after all the straight men, too.

 

 

Next, they’ll want to force all employees to wash their hands after using the restroom!

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH (Google)

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!! (Google)

 

*     *     *

 

What sort of people campaign against people getting checkups?  What sort of people promote such ignorance?  What sort of stupid questions am I asking?  Because we all know the answer:

 

The Morally Bankrupt GOP (Google Image)

The Morally Bankrupt GOP
(Google Image)

 

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Filed under Campaigning, Climate Change, Conspicuous consumption, Criminal Activity, Elections, Gizmos, Global Warming, Health and Medicine, Huh?, Humor, Hypocrisy, Law, Politics, Science, Stupidity

Confessions of a Pooter-Pack

It was about 5-1/2 years ago when I first recommended canonization of my husband, John, to the Vatican.  Even though I am a very lapsed Catholic, I’m sure they’ll go along with it.  Because he really does deserve it.  Good spouses of many people with chronic diseases deserve special recognition, but I’m pretty sure only John deserves sainthood.  Because all the good saints have been tortured, haven’t they?  And John absolutely fits that bill.

Saint Sebastian by Il Sodoma, c. 1525

Saint Sebastian by Il Sodoma, c. 1525
(Image from Wikipedia)
I couldn’t find any saints who were suffocated, so John has a good shot

Let me mention that I’ve been reluctant to write about this subject.  But after multiple requests following my last post about good hygiene and the New Jersey Turnpike, I figured I’d just get it over with and get on with my life.  

I knew from an early age that there was one moniker I never wanted to have.  I never wanted to be a “Pooter-Pack.”

It’s a bad thing, being a Pooter-Pack.  Nobody likes them or wants them around.  And nobody wants to be called a pooter-pack.

In fact, in possibly the only instance where my brother was caught doing something wrong, Fred’s mouth was washed out with soap for calling our paperboy a “Pooter-Pack.”

What, you might ask is a “Pooter-Pack?”

It’s a pack of pooters, DUH!  You know – farts.  Butt burps.  Cutting the cheese.  “Fluff” as my childhood best friend Liz’s family called them for no logical reason.

I did not want to be a pooter-pack.  No-sirree Bob.  And for the longest time, I wasn’t.  Those were golden years that I did not fully appreciate.

To set the record straight, I did not become a pooter-pack that day when all the kids in my 6th grade English class thought I did.  I was viciously maligned.  Tagged.  Ridiculed.  It was a hot spring day and my young, innocent, bare leg stuck to my plastic seat.  When I moved, I made a nasty fart-like sound with my leg.

Let’s be clear about this:  I did not fart.  I would have died first.

But Tommy O, the main bully in my life, led Kevin E and John L in a sing-song around me:

Elyse Farted!  Elyse Farted! 

She did she did she did!

I wanted to disappear.  Disolve.  Die.  It was so unfair.  I didn’t!  Not even so much as an SBD!    And it had no smell at all because I hadn’t farted.  It was a leg, umm, fart.  They’re different.  Somewhat pleasant, even.

I tried to defend myself, but the whole class heard the noise and believed the boys, not me.  I hate them all still.

Fast forward past many fart-free years.

In the early 1980s, I had a severe case of colitis-that-was-really-Crohn’s disease.  That was when I really started tooting my own horn.  Quietly, though, thankfully.  SBDs.

One of the treatments for many kinds of bowel disease is a drug called prednisone.  One of prednisone’s most notable symptoms is flatulence.  Prednisone does not give a girl delicate lady-like whiffs of something vaguely unpleasant that might induce a brief nose wrinkle.

Nope.  Waves of heavy, inescapable stink accompany a person taking prednisone.  Like Charlie Brown’s friend, Pig Pen, a smelly cloud hung around me wherever I went.

(Google image.  Done by Charles Shultz, of course.  Who, I am quite sure never had gas.)

(Google image. Done by Charles Shultz, of course. Who, I am quite sure never had gas.)

In the Metro.  On a bus.  In an elevator.  In my office.  I was engulfed in my nasty, stinky cloud.

In spite of the evidence of everybody’s senses, I never admitted I had a problem.  That it was me polluting the air.  Nope.  I didn’t say a word to anyone.  I just couldn’t bear another bit of humiliation.  (But frankly, unless there were a whole lot of lucky people around me suffering from anosmia, loss of smell, people were polite or stupid.)

I’m going with polite.  Because my friends and co-workers were truly terrific.  And they knew just how embarrassing life was for me.  You see, when you have bowel disease, you are constantly in humiliating, compromising positions.  I’ve written about that many times, including here.

I didn’t mention that I’d become a pooter-pack to my parents, who were, luckily for them, safely in another state.  I couldn’t mention it to my sisters, including Beth, the nurse, who would have known the reason (I didn’t)  or Judy, who would have laughed herself silly and taken me along with her.

I also didn’t mention it to my roommate, Keily.  Keily lived with me.  She was exposed to the ill effects of the prednisone but never once broached the subject (she is the biggest-hearted person in the world, my friend Keily is).

I’m pretty sure that my dog, Goliath, loved me more because of the smell.  Dogs are gross.

The only person who ever mentioned flatulence to me was my gastroenterologist, Dr. C., the guy who gave me the damn fart pills.

“Are you having any gas?” he’d ask.  It was always the last in the usual lineup of embarrassing questions.

I would look him straight in the eye and say:

“Gas?  Me?  No,” I lied, every single time.

Dr. C would tilt his head like Goliath and look straight at me as we sat together in my stink cloud.  Every time he’d wait for my answer to change.

It never did.

As far as my medical records from that time are concerned, I have never ummm, fluffed.  Dr. C surely wrote me up in a medical journal somewhere.  Or perhaps he went to a doctor to have his own sense of smell assessed.

Anyway, I had my surgery and for years I lived up to what I told Dr. C.  I did not pooter.  Truthfully this time.

I’m not sure that that was what first attracted John to me, but I’m sure the fact that I did not have a stink cloud around me didn’t hurt.  We’d been married about 20 years when my Crohn’s symptoms, ummm, re-erupted in about 2006.

I felt fine, actually.  But something peculiar happened whenever I would go to bed.  It started out slowly, gently, and then progressed to putrid:  Whenever I lay down, my bottom end erupted.  The most noxious substance passed out of my body and into the air in the bedroom.

It never happened if I was upright.  Ever.  Only John had to deal with it.

“There’s actually some comfort in it,” John said towards the beginning.   “Not every husband can be sure that their wife won’t lay with another man.”

I pursed my lips and glared at him.

Still, I couldn’t imagine what could possibly be happening.  But then I started to worry.  You see, when I had my surgery in 1982, which was for documented colitis, the doctors disagreed after the fact about what I had. If it came back within 10 years, it was Crohn’s; if it didn’t, it was colitis.  It turned out that it was Crohn’s that came back over 20 years later.  And it came back with a bang.

The first person I told my gaseous problem to was my late sister, Beth.  Beth was a nurse, and she was incredibly smart.  Amazing, in fact.  She could diagnose any malady in a nano-second.  So I told her about my problem, and that it was getting worse.

“I really don’t know what to do,” I told her.

“Gee, Lease,” she said sympathetically, “It sounds like you could clear Walmart.”

“Thanks, Beth.  That helps.”

“Try some GasX,” she recommended a bit more helpfully.

And I did.  GasX works.  It really does.  It even works on weird gas problems like mine.  Sort of.

At that time, GasX was available in two forms.  One that claimed it kept gas away for 4 hours, and the other said it kept it away for 6 hours.  Never was a drug label more accurately written.  Because exactly at 4 hours plus one second, all that stored up flatulence would burst out into my bedroom, like a neutron bomb.  In the middle of the night, and into the place where my poor husband tried to sleep with me.

He never complained.  Occasionally, he would moan “Oh, Lease,” but I’m sure that was just his way of searching for oxygen.

My boss, a physician, noticed me researching flatulence one day, and asked me why.  I confessed my problem to her.

She stood in my office and laughed until her belly hurt.

It’s never good when a doctor can’t stop laughing after you’ve described your symptoms.  Unfortunately, she couldn’t help me either, and she’s brilliant.  She’d never heard of reclining flatulence, either.  Nor had Google, my bible.

Unlike my previous time as a pooter-pack, this time there was no cloud of stink.  Instead, this time the stink formed a curtain, a wall around the bed.  It was truly horrible laying there in the poisonous air.  But I would, being the good wife I am, try to rid myself of the gas by going to the bathroom.

When I came back?  Getting back was like walking through a brick wall.  There was literally a physical wall of stinky bricks.

Which brings me to the reason my husband should be canonized.  Because for 2 years, and until the third of three different doctors poked and prodded and tested, did the third one figure out what was wrong with me (an internal abscess that required surgery), my husband did not complain that I was not exactly a dream wife.

And never once did he call me a pooter-pack.

*   *   *

In a last-ditch effort to save a little bit of my nearly exhausted pride, I will tell you that since that surgery, I have not been a pooter-pack.  Honest.  Would I lie?

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Filed under Childhood Traumas, Climate Change, Crohn's Disease, Dogs, Family, Global Warming, Health and Medicine, Humor

Earth Day/Birthday — The Recycled Edition

Today, April 22, is Earth Day!  It’s the 43nd Anniversary of the very first Earth Day.  Here for Angie of Childhood Relived (because I am her primary new source) is Walter Cronkite’s report on the first Earth Day, 1970:

It would also be my late sister Judy’s 61th birthday.

Whoever made the decision to turn Judy’s birthday into Earth Day chose wisely.  Judy was a born environmentalist and recycler.

On the first Earth Day, Judy was a new, very young mother who believed in saving the planet.  She was the first “environmentalist” I ever knew personally, and well, I thought she was nuts.  There was a recycling bin in her kitchen for as long as I can remember.  And this was back when recycling took effort.  She believed in gardens, not garbage, and she made life bloom wherever she was.

I’ve got kids,” she’d say.  “It’s their planet too!”  

But years later, Judy took recycling to a whole different level when she helped people recycle themselves.  In the 1990s, Jude, who was then living in Florida, began working with the Homeless, assisting at shelters.   Then she actively began trying to help homeless vets find food, shelter and work — to enable them to jumpstart their lives.

When she died in early 2000, the American Legion awarded her honorary membership for her services to homeless vets.  A homeless shelter was named in her  honor.  So she’s still doing good works, my sister is.  That would make her wildly happy.

Jude also gave me the Beatles.  So it is very appropriate that they wrote a song for her.

You see, the night the Beatles were on Ed Sullivan, it was MY turn to choose what we were going to watch.  And we were going to watch the second part of The Scarecrow of Romney Marsh starring Patrick McGoohan on the Wonderful Wide World of Disney.  My four (all older and MUCH cooler) siblings were furious with me.  But I was quite insistent.  You might even say that I threw a Class I temper tantrum over it, but I wouldn’t admit to that.  But hey, I was seven.  And it was my turn to choose.  Fair is fair, especially in a big family with only one TV.

Somehow, Judy talked me out of my turn.  She was always very persuasive.  Thanks Jude.

Hey Jude, Happy Earth Day-Birthday.

*     *     *

If this looks/sounds familiar, it’s because I recycled this post from last year.  Because you should never use fresh when you can reuse something already written.  And you can never get enough of “Hey Jude.”

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Filed under Family, Global Warming, History, Holidays, Humor, Music

From Me and the BBC

Happy April everybody.

The Best April Fools Joke ever.

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Filed under Global Warming, Holidays, Humor

Chicken S*#t

[Washington, DC, February 15, 2013]  Pundits were astonished today when members of the GOP-led House Committee on Science, Space and Technology announced plans to hold hearings on science and the lack of federal research into the causes of natural catastrophes.

One witness agreed to appear:

Mirror

*     *     *

Seriously, yesterday,  Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) announced that he was shocked, shocked that the United States Guv’ment had not been investing enough money into scientific reasons why that meteor that exploded in the skies over Siberia, injuring over 1,000 people.

Yup, they are finally going to look at science because the sky is falling.  And they’re afraid it will land on them.

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Filed under Climate Change, Criminal Activity, Elections, Global Warming, Humor, Hypocrisy, Politics, Stupidity