2011 July


…a word about Bristol. Because it’s been killing me not to have been able to weigh in on this sooner.

One can’t sit on a $3,000 sofa overlooking a private, Olympic-sized swimming pool in a Hollywood mansion filled with modern conveniences, paid gardeners and bidets, sobbing into a $900 throw cushion, whining about how life is such a struggle and expect anyone at all to believe it. I’m not an idiot. I know all these supposed reality shows are scripted. But don’t most reality show producers at least try to emulate reality on some level? The only thing Lifetime got right about Bristol Palin’s reality is that she is – in fact – a single mom. But that’s it. That’s where the line between her reality show and reality part company.

Most single moms trying to make ends meet would have been happy just to have the money Bristol spent driving her gas-guzzling Ford F-150 from Alaska to California and back again. For many I’m sure that alone would have represented several months of day-care and grocery money. Are we really meant to believe she earned her car, her gas money, her clothes, a food allowance for three (herself, Tripp and Willow) from a short stint in a dentist’s office? How much are they paying dental assistants in Alaska these days? Maybe we should all move there…

Most single moms I know have had to move back in with mom and dad just to get their footing and when they do move out on their own the budget is tight. So, not everyone can afford $10 an hour for a babysitter to go shopping with a friend or clubbing. In fact, I’ve had more than one young mom tell me it doesn’t pay to go to work full time these days because after you put gas in the car, buy lunches and appropriate clothing and register for day-care, you stand to lose money each week. And I’m pretty sure that’s accurate because I remember once working for a company that paid me $50 less per month than what I needed to pay my bills – and when I quit it was because I couldn’t afford to keep it up.

Not everyone can afford a car. In the real world most single moms have to make careful decisions on which vehicles to purchase because it’s often the case one can afford either the car or the insurance but not both – so when it’s possible, a lesser, older make and model is settled on (usually risking getting stuck on the road when something breaks down, however). In cities where buses and local trains are accessible, a lot of single moms forego the expense of a car altogether and just rely on public transport.

Single moms also lose time from work to nurse sick bubs, rush to school to pick up a child who has been injured in a soccer game, or – and this is considered an extravagance by many – to see your child receive an award at a school assembly. Sometimes one can make up the lost pay by working overtime or taking an extra shift – but mostly it’s just sacrificed income that is never recovered.

And this is just a sampling of what actual single moms in the real world go through to raise their children and stand tall in society.

So while Bristol tries to promote an image of being an average, struggling single mother making ends meet by working a menial job in a dentist’s office, we know the truth:  She made a small fortune being a paid lecturer (don’t even get me started on this one) and giving a few speeches and then placing third (or this one either, for that matter) on DWTS and doesn’t even remotely resemble a struggling single mom in America. And she has a millionaire mother who will never let her daughter or grandson be out in the cold. (Even if Sarah wanted to turn her back on Bristol, she has an image to protect and knows the public is always watching.)

So, Bristol, until you’ve:

*spent a frantic hour at your desk talking in whispers so as not to be overheard by your boss while trying desperately to find someone to pick up your sick child from school so you don’t jeopardize your job and/or lose a couple of hours pay –

*had to stand in a checkout line deliberating which food items to put back on the shelf because the docket was more than you had the cash to pay –

*had to go to work sick yourself because you couldn’t afford to miss any more days off –

*had to beg the power company to give you another extension on your bill because your son had a bad cough and you had to pay for a doctor visit and medicine up front –

*had to work co-operatively with your neighbours to arrange shared babysitting so each of you could have the freedom to go shopping or on a date and then have to take care of six kids when it was your turn –

*stood in line waiting to see if you’d qualify for food stamps –

*needed to go through the sheriff’s department to collect child support because you couldn’t afford an attorney –

*worried if the new babysitter was treating your son well or if you’d made the wrong decision and wondered who else you might call to verify this person’s credentials –

*had to pass on a family trip, special occasion or not accept an invitation in the first place to go – well, anywhere – because there just wasn’t enough money this week…

…then sit down and shut the Hell up you snivelling, spoiled little brat.

And the next time you want to claim you’ve experienced a ghetto – get out of the damned car and hoof it.

Well there – I feel better. Back to work on Princess part 3 🙂

 

James and Rupert Murdoch under fire at British Parliament

This man who runs an empire that spans oceans with an iron fist has just wimped out under investigation claiming he had no idea what people below him were doing – he’s just a figurehead – not an active player in his company(ies). (Is he taking lessons from Sarah?)

Thank God for the female British Parliamentarian (sorry it’s 2:30am and I gave up on names and titles more than an hour ago) who looked this magnificent liar straight in the eye and said you would like us to believe you – the man who is purports to work 10-12 hour days and has his finger in every department – that you had no idea what your chiefs were doing?

Murdoch stated he was not an active CEO – he was CEO in name only and the people beneath him betrayed him and his company. But this lovely blonde-haired Brit cut his lies short, dug in her heels and kept at him…

She reminded Murdoch that not so long ago one of his chiefs resigned his post at News of the World because he felt as captain it was his duty to go down with the ship. She asked if he agreed with that decision. Rupert said yes. Then she stared him in the eye again and said something like ‘but Mr. Rupert Murdoch we all know you are actually the captain of the ship so do you feel responsible enough to also resign?

Rupert said no. she said “Why not? You’re the captain… this all happened on your watch.”

Every time Rupert claims that this mess is someone else’s fault asnd he’s completely innocent and he can’t resign because he is the ONLY PERSON WHO CAN CLEAN UP THE MESS I swear I hear violins and angels singing a chorus of Hallelujah because this is the song the liar sings just before cell door closes behind him.

And this all means Fox is next.

Life is good tonight 🙂

There was a man who lunged at Rupert but his wife (of all people) pummeled him to the ground. I truly hope those photos air soon. It was a sight to behold!

My 92 year-old mother has just decided to not apply for her driver’s license this year. Having undergone surgery on her wrist that is (in her words) taking it’s own sweet time to heal, she’s come to the realization that she can’t grip the keys or turn the steering wheel well enough to consider herself an undistracted, safe driver. And while she’s been recouping from surgery and been the passenger rather than the driver of late, she’s (finally) embraced the idea that her reflexes may not be as sharp as they once were – and prefers not to end up one of those (again, her words) stubborn old coots who kills someone just to prove they can still drive a damn car

For the record, my mother has been a stubborn old coot for as long as I’ve known her and it’s a trait that has always served her in good stead (but I’m certainly not going to tell her this now!)

My mother got her driver’s license after my brother was born at the end of WWII and my father quickly nick-named her Leadfoot Lucy because she had a tendancy to drive (how shall I say this) just a wee bit fast. She would wave my father off claiming she didn’t speed. She just knew how to keep up with traffic. Yes, even if it was all behind her…

To her credit she didn’t get tickets and never once caused an accident and she always got us where we needed to go. Among her friends she was the designated driver. It wasn’t until the early 1960’s that more of her female friends began to drive and as a child I remember my mother was always picking someone up or dropping someone off.

She was the one who drove the carload of kids, pets and luggage three hours to the summer retreat ahead of the other adults. She was the one who packed the car with kids needing rides to ballet lessons, track meets, football games, beach parties, piano recitals, choir practice, birthday parties, Saturday matinees at the movies, doctor appointments, dentist appointments and spur-of-the-moment trips to take everyone for pizza or special desserts. She did this for her neighbours, her friends, her relatives, her children, her grandchildren and even recently, her great-grandchildren. She was the one you called when you needed to get somewhere now.

When I was 9 or maybe 10 years old my seamstress mother was sewing a wedding dress for a customer when her hand slipped and the machine plunged the needle directly through the middle of her finger, through the nail, through the flesh. She told me to get her keys and meet her at the car. When I saw her next she had a towel wrapped around her hand like a boxing glove and down the stairs we went. I opened the car doors and she instructed me to sit on her lap and she helped me work the wheel and gearshift while she worked the pedals. We limped down side streets all the way to the emergency.

When the doctor unwrapped the towel he found the needle, thread and presser foot were all still attached to her finger. Like I said – my mother drove everywhere.

My mother now faces being the one who needs a ride and after all these years of being the one who’s done the driving, this is not the easiest pill to swallow. In a phone conversation yesterday she shared with me how hard it is to ask people to take her places (the grocery store seemed to upset her the most) even though people seemed quite willing. I reminded her that she never felt put upon when anyone asked her for a ride and the people around her today are happy to take her anywhere she needs to go. Still, the journey from driver to passenger is a hard road for an otherwise independent soul.

She’s buried her one and only husband, a grown daughter and every relative on my father’s side of the family with whom she had a history. She and her sister are the only two left on their side of the family, save the younger ones from my generation on down. She’s buried every lifelong friend, classmate, teacher, film idol and I cannot begin to imagine what that must be like. I understand loss. But the loss of every single person with whom one has shared childhood or young adult memories – or even middle-aged memories – that I can’t even wrap my head around.

So I reminded my mother how very fortunate she is in that she has people around her who know her now – and love her now – and won’t let her slip through the cracks as it happens with other oldies who find themselves alone, stranded and forgotten.

And in reminding her of all these things it has occurred to me that we don’t do enough for our oldies. Our neighbourhoods are spotted with oldies who could probably use a ride to the shops or doctor’s office and we need to make more of an effort to find out who they are. It shouldn’t be left to them to ask. It should be up to us to offer.

My mother’s affair with driving a car spanned just about 70 years and three generations, all without incident. There should be something that commemorates this kind of milestone in a person’s life.

A renewal notice from DMV is just not a fitting end to 70 years of unblemished service.

In yesterday’s comments, bluepress26 reminded us of Sarah Palin’s original campaign mantra ‘you can’t blink’ and how this year’s journos seem to have conveniently forgotten about how Sarah Palin taught us all about Alaskans and how when you grow up in Alaska you learn to make decisions on the fly, without blinking. 

Excellent point bluepress26 –

After all, when your name is Sarah Palin you can’t be expected to wait around for the dead fish to follow the flow…

11 SEPTEMBER 2008

In the above interview produced for television at the beginning of the John McCain 2008 campaign, journalist Charles Gibson asked candidate Sarah Palin about her willingness and preparedness in becoming vice president should she and John McCain win the 2008 election. This clip addresses his question of how she reacted to McCain’s asking her to be his running mate – he wanted to know if she thought she was ready – if she even once hesitated when asked… this is the part that would become important today, in July of 2011:

Gibson
…Governor, can you look the country in the eye and say “I have the experience and I have the ability to be not just vice president but perhaps president of the United States of America…”

Palin
…you can’t blink. You have to be wired in a way of being so committed to the mission, the mission that we’re on, reform of this country, and victory in the war, you can’t blink. So I didn’t blink then even when asked to run as his running mate.

Weeks later and only six days before the 2008 election eve, Sarah Palin was asked if she would run again should she and John McCain not win this election. Her direct answer shocked not only the interviewer but the McCain camp itself:

There are numerous snippets in interviews throughout the 2008 campaign in which Sarah repeats her mantra of – you can’t blink – giving the appearance she knows exactly what she’s doing and with a seemingly seamless effort, she removes all doubt of her ability/inability to make quick, informed decisions. A trait her supporters latched onto with pride and continue to defend with righteous indignation

But once the campaign was over she began meditating to a different chant and…

On Oprah in 2009:

…she blinked

On Greta Van Susteran in spring 2011

…and blinked

On Hannity that same day:

…and blinked

Newsweek Interview 10 July 2011

… If Palin doesn’t end up running, the reason will be simple, she said. “Family. If it came down to the family just saying, ‘Please, Mom, don’t do this,’ then that would be the deal-killer for me, because your family’s gotta be in it with you.”

One doesn’t need to hail from Alaska to understand the principle behind hesitation in a contest. Any schoolkid knows when you’re staring at your friend across the lunch table the loser is the one who blinks.

Sarah’s been blinking all over the place and yet not one journalist seems to have noticed. So the same woman who claimed to have not even told her family she was accepting the life-changing offer by John McCain but just took it because in Alaska one doesn’t blink – now claims she can’t tell the public if she’s going to run in 2012 or not because she hasn’t mulled it over with her family yet –  (even though Bristol stated on camera her mom told them all her decision) –

– yeah, I’m with the commenters in yesterday’s post who want to know why the media hasn’t nailed Sarah on her brazen hypocrisy.

The Bus To Nowhere

It’s been roughly 18 days (if I got the dates right) since Sarah Palin abruptly ended her One Nation Owes Me Money  bus tour ostensibly to recoup and regroup and then do a little jury duty before getting back on the road to showcase Real America for those of us who may not understand where Real America umm – is.

Granted it’s only just getting into mid-July and as Sarah put it when questioned about stopping the tour well it’s a summer tour and summer is long… so okay – fair enough. Summer in the USA is not actually over for another six weeks.

So what’s the plan? There is a plan, right? Well there must be because SarahPAC is still actively collecting donations for bankrolling the bus tour. Surely they wouldn’t still be advertising the tour and asking for donations unless there actually WAS such a tour, right? Right? I mean – they wouldn’t actually be so smug as to collect money for an event that was already finished would they?

Well, let’s visit SarahPAC  and see, shall we? Looks norm-wait – what’s this?

A popup banner as you enter the site… [click thumbnail to enlarge] 
And a top-corner ad on one of the pages… [see below]

I find this whole thing terribly curious.  First inasmuch as a Political Action Committee accepts donations for strictly political purposes but then is free to spend those collected funds on anything from jacked-up salaries for friends and co-horts to unnecessary attorney fees to inflated PR needs, all under the guise of overhead costs, and then for family vacations or paying one’s mortgage as long as one is not actively running for office oneself – I find it all curious and curiouser.

Sarah Palin the millionairess – still collecting $5. donations from people who can barely feed their families in today’s financial clime – and this time for a road trip that in all probability is finito, having shot itself in the foot many times over causing it to limp to a premature halt. Well, as governor Sarah accepted $500k for a bridge to nowhere – only stands to reason she would want to collect an equal amount for a bustrip to nowhere now that her political career is kaput.

(Close your eyes Keri!)

Silly Poofs!

From the comments on the previous post:

@Keri,

Perhaps the man was from New Zealand where the world dictionary defines ‘poof/poofter’ as a ‘contemptible person’ which – sorry – fits quite accurately into my personal definition of the Palin money-grubbing clan.

I don’t know where you live in Australia but I can tell you that I live in southeastern Qld where the term gay-bashing is used to identify actual gay-bashers and the term ‘poof’ is not taken very seriously at all. In fact, the word poof is freely used in front of small children (where using the word bloody will catch a glare and an elbow in the ribs); is used in the same context as Deborah who mutters the word idiot to refer to her husband, Ray Barone when he’s well, being one – and is commonly tossed about among my gay friends as a term of affection. If it has roots in the homosexual community the same way nigger has roots in the black community, I think it has outgrown those roots where I live.

But I do humbly apologize for my whimsical offence if it did, indeed, offend a member of the gay community. I meant no disrespect to gays, blacks or anyone. Honest.

That said, relax a bit Keri. The meanings of words become diluted over time and can actually mean entirely different things in different locations. In England for example, a fag is just a cigarette. In Los Angeles California, ho-ho-ho is apparently a collection of prostitutes while in most other places it’s just what Santa says while cllimbing down the chimney. 

I’m pretty sure when the Christmas carole lyric of “don we now our gay apparel” was written the author didn’t envision a parade of homosexuals prancing about in sequined dresses. I’m pretty sure the lyricist meant party clothes – which is what gay apparel would have been in the sixteenth century when the song Deck The Halls was written. Putting on one’s gay clothing meant it was time to stop working and celebrate. It didn’t mean a man was a cross-dresser.

Fruitcake is a good one. Originally intended to liven up a party during the holidays, it somehow morphed into an insult meaning someone was crazy. However it evolved, the brandy-soaked holiday dessert somewhere along the way became associated with people acting nutty. There is a sort of reasoning one can follow in that.  However, how it made the leap from crazy to becoming a derogatory expression meant to degrade homosexuals in the mid 1900’s I have no idea – but leap it did and as a teenager who lived in San Francisco, I grew up knowing most fruitcakes lived on Castro St. (Haha sorry Tom!)

For the record, too also, you can say fruitcake in front of small children without fear of anyone gasping for breath. And that’s kind of been my measuring stick for knowing what is appropriate or not while living in a different country from that of  my birth. If no one scolds me for saying something in front of the littlies, then it must be okay to say in public, in mixed company.

I stand by my usage of the word poof and apparently so does a very big dictionary. But Keri, I am genuinely sorry if my reference to the Palin women of ‘Silly Poofs’ offends you or any of my readers. You obviously share a history with the word that I do not. And while I can respect your history, I expect the same respect in return.

If only Sarah were equally open to offering apologies, perhaps we would stop thinking of her as quite so big an idiot.

Or not.

Had occasion to be at my local Newstand this arvo and while looking over the new arrival display, casually asked the clerk if they would be getting Bristol Palin’s book Not Afraid of Life.

The clerk looked up from the register and said “who?” so I explained that Sarah Palin’s daughter, Bristol, aged 20 had just published her memoirs and I wondered if we would be getting copies. She fiddled for a moment on the computer then left to ask the manager. A rather matronly woman standing next to me said (to no one in particular) “How does one write their memoirs at age 20?” Then she answered her own question by cocking her head and snickering “Yankee arrogance!”

The clerk returned to say there were no plans to have the book available in the shop but I could order it online, probably. Then she said “Isn’t Mrs. Palin the one who ran for president and lost?” But before I could answer, the snickerer beside me chimed in with a hearty ” Yes, she’s the one who demanded an audience with Margaret and was put in her proper place. And now her daughter’s written her memoirs at age 20!” The sarcasm in her voice dripped onto my shirt. I stepped aside.

An old man in a beanie and flannel jacket, flipping through the newspaper he was waiting in line to buy chortled “Silly poofs!” and I thought – I’d never heard a more appropriate description of Sarah and Bristol Palin than that… Silly Poofs!

In Australia, the term ‘poof’ began as slang for a gay man. It has evolved through the years to mean more like a man behaving unmanly, and is in general used among mates to tease each other. Like when a bloke loses a bet and has to wear his wife’s skirt in public. I’ve heard the term often while living downunder and I can’t recall a single time when it was meant to be derogatory.

Except! (And there’s always that exception) when it’s meant to imply someone’s complete idiocy. An old man calling two women ‘poofs’ is definitely meant to convey to the listener “pfft – idiots!”

I’ve pinched the phrase and intend to use it a lot from now on so Sarah? Bristol? Let the trademark wars begin!

I wonder how many ghost-writers will get thrown under the Silly Poof bus before Harper-Collins figures out there’s no more money to be made from these two monumental frauds.

Oh and speaking of idiots, this made me giggle:

Next Page »