Thought I would have until noon today but our first big storm of winter came early. That scotched my usual routine of a leisurely breakfast at SunPrint in the Glass Bank with print copies of the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Wisconsin State Journal, and the Progressive Dane newspaper.
I hit the driveway at 9:10 in the a.m., exactly as the snow began falling here on the southwest side of Madison, my base of operations. I made a mad dash to Octopus car wash on Park Street thinking that either this car will be clean or totaled. ("New car smell" is my choice of fragrances.) Got it home in a white-knuckle/you-can-do-this mode. (My version of Into the Wild; see the movie review below.) Tucked it under its protective NOAH all-weather blanket for the winter. Mission accomplished.
Now, the fireplace is ablaze, A bottomless sherry glass hosts a dram of Harvey's Bristol Crème, and the Intel Core 2 Duo iMac is locked and loaded. A good day to blog!
My Hillary Nutcracker arrived five days after my on-line order and is every bit as advertised -- but 9 inches high, not 8 as I wrote earlier. "Stainless steel thighs!" "Cracks toughest nuts!" A big hit at the Packer watching party Thursday night at a friend's survivalist camp in the wilds of rural Verona. He has the dish, ham and scalloped potatoes to die for. Thanks, Rick!
Saw the movie Into the Wild with No. 1 son Friday night at Sundance Cinemas. Gave thanks that however traumatizing his upbringing may have been (a family tradition), it did not scare him off the res like Alexander Supertramp. (Because Sean Penn wrote and directed, one review was titled "Dead Man Camping.") But everyone should do something crazy when they're young -- just not fatal.
Great movie (see Kent Williams' excellent review in Isthmus) and a great venue.
Dinner at the Flattop Grill. What a concept: build your own stir fry. Who are all these kvetchers about the old Hilldale? This area is becoming the newest Monroe Street -- residential density, an easy walk to high-end shopping, groceries and entertainment. Dane County: what a great place to live!
The Good News bearer
I am the bearer of glad tidings this Christmas season.
Mike Hanson, formerly the spokesman for the Madison Police Department, will be the new neighborhood police officer for the troubled Hammersley Road, Betty's Lane, Theresa Terrace area here on the southwest side. He starts in February.
Mike will be the face of the blue blanket championed by Ald. Thuy Pham-Remmele and Police Chief Noble Wray, over the opposition of Brenda Konkel and the afternoon Progressive Dane newspaper. I know Mike has the full confidence of Chief Wray and will make a marked improvement on the quality of life for everyone in this neighborhood. Mike Hanson is real quality.
More police bashing from PD
In the The Daily Page Forum next door, Brenda Konkel asks "Do the police come to your neighborhood meeting?" The answer is sometimes, Ald. Konkel, but they are always welcome.
Given that the meeting in question was held on troubled Allied Drive and that said meeting concerned tenants in some properties that are being foreclosed on, not having a police presence might have been very unwise. With a police presence, no worries. Proactive, preventive. Get how that works, Brenda?
But of course, Progressive Dane likes to turn the race card face up as a pre-emptive maneuver.
A Foron calling himself "pulsewidth modulation" takes an accurate pulse:
I have a discussion topic with a lead off question:
Why is innuendo BK (Brenda Konkel)'s favorite rhetorical tool?
Too much sugar causes tooth decay
Been reading Adam B. Ulam's book, Communism. Talk about the cult of personality! From Saturday's Progressive Dane editorial "Listening Makes Feingold bold":
Feingold is not a politician, at least not in any contemporary sense of the word. He rises to the higher call of public service. ... Feingold is adventurous... Feingold is courageous.
A commenter named Susan responded:
Why I heard he's 10 feet tall, breathes fire and shoots tolerance and compassion out of his eyes!
The surge is working
Here's some news you don't get in the Wisconsin State Journal or the afternoon Progressive Dane newspaper:
A day after Rep. John P. Murtha said he thought the surge in Iraq was working -- a comment on which Republican supporters of the war quickly seized -- the House Democrats' leading war critic is trying to get back on the party script.
No one has spoken more wisely about Iraq than Thomas Friedman of the New York Times:
At one level, I just don't get it. It's clear that the surge by U.S. troops has really dampened violence in Iraq. So don't we now need a surge in diplomacy to finish the job?
But then Friedman acknowledges that there is no need for a grand ceremony, complete signatures, handshakes and band music.
... the situation evolving in Iraq is "accommodation without reconciliation." The various parties basically accept the new imbalance of power -- Shiites on top, but allowing the Kurds and Sunnis to have a share...