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Beauty and the bus

Aging, It's not easy, Politics

Fifty two years ago today, Rosa Parks stayed seated on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama, and the world changed.

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Politics are scary, so let's talk about Jennifer Love Hewitt's butt

Beauty, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Politics

President Bush is mumbling about World War III. 3,000 Wisconsin National Guard Soldiers have been alerted for service in Iraq. Republicans are leaning toward jovial Mike Huckabee, whose middle eastern solution is "just win it." And everyone's starting to get a glimmer of how deep the financial crisis goes into the banking industry.

So what's the big news story of the day? Some 291 articles' worth?

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This should Scare you

It has been reported that tests of airport security systems and screeners did not stop fake bomb parts from getting on to airplanes.  Testers were able to smuggle fake bombs 75% of the time at Los Angeles Airport and 60% of the time at Chicago's O'Hare airports (Read article here).  So the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) takes away your toothpaste, hand and face lotion and lighters, but not bombs.  The testers put fully assembled bombs in empty suitcases and the screeners did not catch them. Glad our government is running this service , imagine what the government will do when they run our health care system!!

The report shows that we are not any safer from attacks since the attacks on September 11.  A terrorist  still could get through the scanning system 3/4ths of the time or 2/3rds of the time depending on which airport they choose to use.  Do you feel safer from attacks??  We should be ashamed that we do not get better service from the TSA and from our government.

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If Only it Would Wrap the Presents Too

Mayfair, Tosa Business

Imagine this: You’re knee-deep in shopping lists and you’re wracking your brain trying to figure out what to get your picky teenage daughter when suddenly, inspiration hits. You know exactly what to get her. Let’s say it’s a pair of stretch jeans The problem is where to find them.


So, you plan a trip to Mayfair and mentally make a list of all the stores that might carry stretch jeans. But you have a budget and it’s important that you get them in the perfect size. Next thing you do is get in your car, drive to the mall and prepare to spend hours wandering and shopping, right?


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A preemptive war on knowledge?

language, Politics

President George W. Bush believes that the safety of the United States depends on "preventing (Iran) from having the knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon."

It's an extraordinary idea, this "knowlege prevention." Google doesn't even recognize the term. Anything you find with both "knowledge" and "prevention" is about avoiding losing knowledge.

The first time I heard the expression "preventing . . .knowledge" in October, I wrote it off as more language blundering. But with the new National Intelligence Estimates-fueled debate about whether Iran really has stopped pursuing nuclear weapons, the phrase is being used with the frequency of propaganda.

I'm not sure how you enforce ignorance. Shut down the schools? Burn the books? Imprison the scientists? The knowledge in question doesn't belong to the United States. It belongs to those who can discover and apply it.

This isn't to say that Iran isn't dangerous. It certainly is. Whatever National Intelligence Estimates show, it seems reasonable to assume that if Iran isn't pursuing nuclear weapons at the moment, it will. Knowledge, after all, is power--nuclear or otherwise.

The work of someone who calls himself the leader of the free world isn't to prevent people from having knowledge. It's to persuade them not to use it badly--the work of diplomacy.

Sometimes, force is needed to prevent bad acts. But not to prevent knowledge.



My internal compass usually works pretty well when it comes to the cardinal directions--north, south, east, and west. But throw in a diagonal street and you've lost me 70% of the time. I'm diagonally challenged.

Usually the disorientation means some extra miles on the odometer. But now it means that my bee-colored recyclables cart runneth over. Collection day was last week.

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The Art of the Cart

City services

Talk to anybody around Tosa and they’ve got one thing on their mind: Jeez, those new recycling carts are ugly!


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Today was a gift


We have the media to thank for a heavenly day precipitated by a big dose of hysteria.

If you got stuck in a drift or dinged in a skid-on collision, my condolences. But for the rest of us, it just wasn't that bad.

Although the streets are slick and the hills tough to climb, there's nothing much in today's weather that couldn't be dealt with by driving slowly and keeping a prudent distance. The shoveling's heavy, but you can still do it that way as fast as with a snowblower. Particularly if you set a fit 17-year-old to the task. Still, if you're older, go slow: thar be heart attacks and back injuries ahead.

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This is a test


Inquiring minds want to know: will Randy re-post his blog for a fourth time in order to stay "on top"?


Christmas Quiz

Christmas, Quiz

Below is a simple Quiz about Christmas.  I will publish the answers in a few days - in the mean time, submit your answers in the comment section.

1) What color is Santa's belt?

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Mayfair Wins Store War, Loses Battle of the Plow

Mayfair, Tosa Business

Friday, a friend and I spent the day shopping…at Brookfield Square. Yes, we cheated on Mayfair.


Anyway, I noticed a couple of things while conducting retail therapy. First of all, despite all of the renovations and new stores and restaurants, Brookfield Square still doesn’t compare to Mayfair. This is just my opinion, but I was less than impressed by the offerings at Brookfield Square. Lots of repeats and somewhat mediocre quality that add up to just a “wanna-be” mall. Any stores that Mayfair and Brookfield Square share are infinitely better at Mayfair. It seems like they’re targeting the bargain hunter, but for my money, Southridge would be a better value.


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Forget the kids: Teach parents about sex

Sex education

(If frank talk about sex education offends you, read no further.)

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Tosa Holiday Pub Crawl



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Princesses and hags: how we train ourselves to look at aging

Aging, Beauty, It's not easy

Yesterday, Rush Limbaugh asked, “Does our looks-obsessed culture want to stare at an aging woman?” The woman in question was Hillary Clinton, of course.

It's like almost an addiction that some people have to what I call the perfection that Hollywood presents of successful, beautiful, fun-loving people. So the question is this: Will this country want to actually watch a woman get older before their eyes on a daily basis?”

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Gas and crass--the EPA and those Spears girls

Environment, Kids, Media

Wondering why the auto makers didn't make a bigger objection to the new energy bill signed into law yesterday? After all, it raised standards for emissions control.

The answer became clear within hours, according to the New York Times. That same day, the Environmental "Protection" Agency decreed that states could not pass more stringent bills but would have to abide by federal standards. Sixteen states have waivers permitting them to develop higher standards for greenhouse gas emissions than the newly approved standards. But those waivers have been effectively nullified. 

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Christmas interruptus

Kids, Spirtuality

At the dark table in the corner of Singha Thai last night, the fortune cookies arrived, as they always do.

It was my birthday dinner, and I was feeling blessed. The food was good, and I was in the company of a long-time beloved friend. George had arranged for an earlier surprise celebration at The Original Pancake House, where he works. Daughter Annie had flown home to Ft. Collins safely, even though the gale winds left our yard covered with a winter's supply of kindling. Earlier, she and Liz had done the Christmas shopping for everyone, and all I had to do was foot the bill.

All that was left for today was last minute shopping and raspberry torte baking.  Life was good. 

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Doing Christmas in Style...Movie Style


It's Christmas Day and I found everyone. I mean everyone. This afternoon and tonight, they are at the Majestic Cinema in Brookfield. While the rest of the world is hanging out in living rooms and dining rooms celebrating this very special holiday, several hundred of us packed one of the 16 movie theatres just west of Wauwatosa.

This time, our family did it in style. Last week, we purchased VIP seating (you have to go to the box office) for the afternoon showing of National Treasure 2 - Book of Secrets shown on the Ultra Screen. It was pretty cool. Along with the price of admission ($11.50 before 5:30 pm, $14.50 after 5:30 pm), each of us got a sizeable bucket of popcorn and reserved seats in the front row of the VIP section. We were able to choose our seats and they were waiting for us when we arrived. It was really cool, especially since the show was sold out.

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Treat for the spirit

Nature, Spirituality


Sometimes, if you eavesdrop on the hunters in my family, you'll discover the hidden reason for their trips: awe in the face of beauty.

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Making Our World a Little Safer

Fun, Things that bug me

 Do you feel safer today? I thought so. Me too. Yes, folks, the crack TSA team at New York’s LaGuardia airport has spared all of you from a potential disaster – me transporting toothpaste into Milwaukee. Let me explain.


My family and I just returned from a short trip to New York City. Great town. Huge crowds, Broadway, miles of walking. Everyone should visit at least once in their life. You should see the sandwich that $20 can buy! You think the prices at John’s Sandwich Shop have gone up? Try Times Square. Gulp.


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No bang, some whimpers

Aging, New Year

It's not the end of the world, just the end of the year. Still, while I hadn't planned to put on stilettos and silks to dance the year away, neither had I planned to spend the evening in flannel jammies, ice on my ankle instead of in a toasting drink.

It has been one of those days.

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