Thursday, April 20, 2017

Random Thoughts!

How wonderful it was that the Trump “armada” threatening North Korea was headed in the wrong direction.  Kind of says it all, methinks.

Arrogance sums up Bill O’Reilly and other guys like him who go after women who aren’t interested.  I can’t get my head around wanting to sleep with O’Reilly, but I’m sure there are many women who would be interested.  Why, then, go after the others?  Arrogance, an “I’m entitled” mentality, trumps (no pun) intelligence.

Fascism by any other name.  Erdogan claims that the new powers he has as a result of Sunday’s referendum are simply to improve Turkey’s democracy and have the government run smoother.  Sounds like Hitler when he was “elected” in 1933.  Fascism by any other name.

Protest, yes.  Protest violently, no.  Big mistake, and stupid, for anti-Trump or anti-Coulter or anti-any other right wing figure to allow their dissent to turn into violent demonstrations.  Gives ammunition (figuratively I hope) to the bad guys.  Free speech, in Berkeley or anyplace else, should be protected.

Be prepared for the current Supreme Court to rule on the wrong side of many issues as we go forward.  Civil rights, secularism, women’s rights, crime, etc. etc. will all be eroded, maybe temporarily, maybe forever.  I expect the worst.

Look around – stability is threatened and under siege all over the place.  In Venezuela, Indonesia, France, Nigeria, Kashmir, the Middle East, etc., etc., etc.  And here at home.  Good luck to us all.

Friday, April 14, 2017

What People Care About!

Congress has gone home for Easter – probably a good thing for the country given their inability to get anything done.  I hear that many of the people’s representatives are facing hostile questioning from their constituents – also a good thing given they spend too much time in the insulated comfort of Washington, D.C.

Interestingly, the questions these people’s representatives are getting rarely have to do with today’s headlines.  On the front pages are stories about our latest super bomb, bigger than anything since Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and proof that we’re ready to flex our muscles again.  Of course, flexing our muscles also leads to more killing of innocent civilians (another front page story.)

That’s what news junkies and the elites care about.  But that’s not what most people really care about.  What most people care about is much closer to home.  What’s happening with my kid’s school?  How will health care changes affect my family?  My neighborhood isn’t as safe as it used to be.  Why can’t I rent out a bedroom to a tourist?  You said if I voted for you you’d do this and this and this.  When are you going to keep your promises?

A renewed aggressiveness and impatience on the part of constituents is a good thing.  Left or right, their participation in calling their representatives to account may be the only thing that will make a difference – help break the gridlock with which we have been plagued for years.

The threat of not being reelected is the only thing that in the end will cause these people to act.  It’d be nice if that weren’t the case, but this the world we live in.  So use the weapons at hand.  Revive Democracy!   

Thursday, April 06, 2017

Big Little Lies!

Had I seen a preview of the TV show, “Big Little Lies,” and never heard of the book, I doubt I’d have been interested.  I would have thought it was a story about women, for women.  I would have been wrong.  Goes to show how limiting a narrow male view can be.

Once I began watching I was hooked.  Great writing and masterful acting transcend gender.  “Big Little Lies” quickly became my newest favorite show.  Usually in a seven episode series like this the quality will be uneven.  Not this time.  I am reminded of what a friend of mine once said about an actor we knew: “He’s not good or bad.  He just has varying degrees of excellence.”

That’s how it was with the lead actors in “Big Little Lies.”  Each in her own way was excellent.  If I had to choose a ‘best’ it would be Nicole Kidman.  But she would have only a narrow edge over all the others.  And hats off to David Kelley and Jean-Marc Vallée for brilliant writing and directing.

While I’m on the subject of brilliance I have to mention “Fences,” which I was late to see, but better late than never.  Denzel Washington and Viola Davis were outstanding.  The words of August Wilson were, as always, memorable.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Hope Springs Eternal!

“Hope springs eternal in the human breast,” said Alexander Pope in 1734.  I don’t think Pope was referring to baseball fans, but he could have been.  It is Spring, and in a couple of days the Boys of Summer will smell the grass and swing their bats.

Before it starts we’re all even – no wins, no losses.  162 games later most of us will be disappointed and we’ll need to wait ‘til next year.  I loved baseball as a kid, and then lost interest.  However, when our new ballpark opened 18 years ago I became an active fan again.  When I go to a game, for sure I want the Giants to win.  But win or lose, just being in our friendly, beautiful ballpark is a pleasurable experience.  Sandra and I purchased one of the bricks in the sidewalk outside the main gate.  It says, simply, “We Love This Place.”

I’m not too optimistic about the upcoming season.  We’ve got pretty much the same team as last year, competitive because of good pitching, but no bats that are going to wow the aficionados.  Good management and a cohesive clubhouse will help us.  Injuries and subpar performances could hurt. 

But all that aside, I’m looking forward to “Play Ball.”  Hope does indeed spring eternal!

Saturday, March 25, 2017


A great day to read the news:

“Stunning Defeat On Health Care”
“GOP Revolt Sinks Bid To Void Health Care”
“In Dropping Vote, President Swallowed Need For A Showdown”
“Unbending Faction Deals Blow To Its Own Party As Bill Falters”
“Divided GOP Drops Health Bill”
“Trump Confronts Major Setback”
“Ryan Fails To Bridge Divide In GOP”
“Bracing For Fallout After Bill’s Collapse”