This will be a short session...possibly a relief for some readers?
First a weird news story shared by Dave Barry...of interest to those who followed the Pistorius trial in South Africa. I think the U.S. response to this situation is the better one. I also think that people exercising their right to defend their property be, well, more careful than Oscar Pistorius or Tiffany Segule.
You too can subscribe to Dave Barry's blog (yes, you'll get a few advertising e-mails from his host newspaper), and check out his photo of a baby manatee, here:
Now, a link for those seriously interested in constitutional law. This is an "insider" discussion among lawyers. I'm sharing it because a lot of people whose names I recognized on Twitter are lawyers. Kids, feel free to skip.
Just to remind politically oriented readers...although things shared by elected officials still show up here, my own U.S. political posts and links go to Freedomworks / Freedom Connector, and don't show up here. (I'm trying to keep this web site as relevant to our many foreign readers as possible.) If you're a politically oriented U.S. reader and not connected with me via Freedomworks, please set up a free account and connection at freedomworks.org. The site works better with some browsers than others, but so far as I've observed it's secure, easy to use, even ad-free.
This site is, even more specifically, for those concerned with the Virginia educational system:
Next, a blogging tutorial:
I hesitated to share this post by Debbie Dunn, although all posts by her are still good news, because my immediate reaction was "A girl was 'taken out' by an older boy...in grade six?" When I was in grade six, if an older boy had asked me for a date, I would have run straight to the nearest adult screaming that the crazy creep was bothering me. Even though I was tall enough, and curvey enough, that the girls who voluntarily hung out with me in grade six were the older "flunker girls" who were interested in boys, dates, and the puberty process...two of them were like, yeeks, thirteen, but they were okay with me because they kept their male peers away from me.
I'm sharing it now because I'm wondering whether it wasn't the presence among my peers of the "flunker kids," whom nobody expected to go to college or get decent jobs, whose parents would probably be satisfied if they just stayed out of prison, that helped the rest of us stay so clean-minded and preppy. We weren't like the flunkers, even if some of us counted some of them as same-sex friends. We lived in nicer homes--I don't mean necessarily wealthier, which mine was not; I mean nicer, with better parent/child relationships. We earned better grades in school. We could save dating for college, or military service, or at least trade school, where we'd meet people of the opposite sex who were not already related to us. I remember that we were trained to say no to drugs by making fun of caricatures of "scags" who used drugs, and although people I knew were a little more sympathetic to couples who "had to get married" at obscenely young ages (I was allowed to visit a few of them at home), I think the girls who did well in school did define ourselves by contrast with "flunker girls." Maybe separating "nice," presexual adolescents from older, "more physically mature" adolescents is not the answer to teen pregnancy that it theoretically seemed to be.
I would have said, at eleven, that being integrated with the flunker kids was a hardship for the boys, because some of them picked fights, and there was some remote theoretical possibility that they might have harassed me or some other eleven-year-old instead of their thirteen-to-fifteen-year-old peers in their own crowd. I'm not sure that it was a hardship for girls my age to be around those older, tougher girls. And I might add that, now that we're all grown up, some of the flunker kids have gone to college and done well with their jobs.
(If you use Google +, you can read the conversation between DD and me there. Nothing I post on the Internet is meant to exclude anybody from doing anything except spamming. Legitimate comments on the content are always welcome.)
Cheers for Chipotle! I don't eat pork anyway, but I hope they'll soon be able to offer only free-range beef and chicken as well.
Who is Angela Davis, other than (as shown at this link) the Queen of Big Hair? Young readers may not remember why some people still hate her. Meh. I think she was definitely misguided at a formative age, but she has her right to observe Martin Luther King Day like everybody else...
Apologies for linking to the Huffington Post, which still features good content but attracts some very nasty pop-ups, comments, and hackers...anyway, that's up to your discretion; Elizabeth Barrette shares this report on a product that may be very helpful to some readers.
And Ruth Cox announces the availability of some cute dog-picture plaques to hang in your office.
And Jil Eaton is hosting an actual sweepstakes to help knitters knit a dog sweater. Will you get it knitted before the next major cold wave? You just might...
Why am I trying to follow everybody in Virginia's House of Representatives on Twitter? Because this is what I'm paying you to fix. I can scrape up the $95, even though 1% of my annual income might be lower than that (I've not counted yet)...I'm not going to report a low income and get shoved into some sort of gamble at other people's expense, any more than I'm going to participate in the same gamble on my own. But I want this regulation repealed this year! !!!!!
There is no way Taylor Swift is going to be able to be this nice to all the fans she'll have after people read this. It makes me sort of sorry I've not been keeping up with pop music.