Unabashedly liberal

Watching the presidential debate tonight reenforced my belief in the progressive liberal worldview I hold.

I believe that a healthy, peaceful and successful society provides for the common needs of its people.

But what are these common needs and how does a society implement them?

The second part is easier to answer. Government, particularly representative democracy, I feel is the best way for providing for a society.

The first part is a longer answer. I believe a society (through the government) should provide for defense from foreign threats, national disasters, and domestic terrorists.
I believe society should invest in science and technology and the education of the citizens from preschool through college to understand and use the developments that come from that research.
I believe that a society needs to provide for the safety of citizens with a well-funded and well-trained police, fire, paramedic forces.
I believe a society should provide for the health of its citizenry through a national health service for physical and mental health. I believe in protecting the environment through strong personal and corporate regulation of pollution creation and removal.
I believe a society should do all of these and more in order to have an educated, healthy and innovative citizenry. I do NOT believe we should leave this to individuals to fight for these protections. We need to all work together fighting for the greatness of the society and help raise all citizenry to a place where they are safe, healthy and contributing to the common good.

and if this makes me a heartless commie bastard, so be it.


Apples vs. Man

We have decided on a tradition of making and giving preserves for Christmas gifts.

so each year we go out and pick a ridiculous amount of fruit. We made peach jam this summer. Now, we are tackling our apple pickings.

Apple butter is in the slow cooker reducing as I write. Apple pie filling was madeclast night, though some sealing problems, so we'll be eating some pies and cobblers now instead of through the year.

Jelly, sauce, and dehydrated is what's left on the agenda.

I really enjoy preserving and storing food. Good practice for the apocalypse.


Attempt #1287 at writing a blog

I just want to type some words that explain my day, my thoughts, my experiences. Do I want people to read this? Well, being famous from blogging would be cool, but being a personal, private diary is tempting, too. Somewhere in the middle is where it will end along with all other dreams in life, never the pinnacle but never the depth of bottom, either.
In the world of me since last we spoke, h was born. Number 2 is in the oven. I was promoted at work, the wife quit her job and I need a root canal.
I will 32 next week. 2^5.
I have only started formulating real, attainable life goals instead of fanciful daydreams. That may take me nowhere.



one of the reasons we bought a house with a decent yard is gardening.

my inner hippie wants to grow his own food and lower the carbon footprint of our household.

so this year i built three 4x12 raised beds on the south end of our yard.  here's what they looked like this morning:

the bottom one has tomatoes and broccolli that are doing really well.  peppers and eggplant that haven't loved the wet weather. 
the middle has chard, cauliflower (which has been fantastic!  almost a peppery taste) carrots, beans and peas that have overwhelmed the trellis at the end.
the top one has been success and failure.  tried watermelon, cantaloupe and squashes that all died in the cold wet june we had.  the brussell sprouts and zucchini have thrived though.  the pumpkin is starting to take off.  the cucumbers on the left side have been uber slow to grow anything.  so i filled in the empty spaces with lettuce, spinach, beets and radishes.
the tomatoes are ridiculuously huge with tons of flowers on them:

this isn't the only food we are trying to grow in our yard, either.  we planted 2 apple trees and 2 plum trees.  a strawberry patch that is doing quite well.  carla was mad i wouldn't let any strawberries grow this year, but we want the plants to grow strong the first season so next year it's berries galore!  trying blueberries, but i don't think i have the right soil for them.  raspberries and blackberries along the fence line as well.

next wife convincing project:  our own bee hive. 


i'm petitioning mother nature to never make it above 90 in portland again

Taken by Hinode's Solar Optical Telescope on J...Image via Wikipedia
we are in the first hot stretch of the year.  which means my first miserable stretch of the day.  98* yesterday and i'm not talking the nick lachay band!  who were awesome by the way.  and today looks to be just a little cooler.

here's the breakdown for how miserable it is:  i sweat standing still in the shade!

i sweat easily as it is.  i prefer it to be colder.  i wear shorts to work year round.  even in the snow.  i don't need anything to make my sweat arrive more quickly.  and yet when the mercury gets over 90 i can't even go outside without hating myself and cursing all of existence.

the plus side of oregon heat?  no humidity.  it's not like massachusetts or minnesota where you stick to everything and taking a shower is pointless because there is so much moisture in the air you can't even get dry.  when i was there, i couldn't even tell if i was sweating or if it was just the humidity.  the suck.  total suck.

Portrait of Senator Albert Gore (later Vice Pr...Image via Wikipedia
if this is the consequence of climate change, i vow to the world to take up al gore's tarnished megaphone and give that powerpoint presentation until my voice gives out. 

i proclaim to the world that if that's what it takes to get everyone to pay attention to their carbon footprint, i will make millions off a book and dvd and nobel prize. i will. so help me God.


coasting it up

my wife posted about this daytrip before i could, curse her desk job with plenty of down time!
wait, i'm on my weekend.  curse my sleeping in and desire to do nothing!

tillamook ice cream was the purpose, goal, unified theory of everything of this trip.

and we succeeded!  cake batter for me and peaches 'n' cream for the lady.

the frozen dairy seemed to be everyone's reason for being at the factory.

you had to stand in a line just to order your cream and then a separate line for actually getting your ice cream.

but it was freakin delicious.

we also bought some pepper jack, garlic cheddar, cheese curds, summer sausage and fudge.

we ventured another 6 miles west and hit up the ocean.  it was extremely windy.  and not just windy but windy as in having to brace yourself against gusts so you didn't fall over.  i used the bloggie a bit chasing a seagull around.  we took a lot of belly shots of the lady, so hannah will see what her first trip to the ocean was like.  it was also like 80 and clear skies, so the wind made it actually really nice.  we walked on the beach for awhile taking pictures and listening to the waves.  you decide the cuter couple:


next blog>>

since i haven't been much a part of the blogging community in a while, i thought i would just click the "next blog>>" button on the top of the page and see where it takes me.

just going by the 100 or so blogs i've seen over the last couple days there are a few "genres" of blogs on blogger:
  • mommy
  • bicycling
  • christian
  • AA
  • artists
  • and combinations of the above
i have come across very few blogs that are what i think my blog is and what i remember blogs being 8 years ago:  random posts about random topics sprinkled with metacognitive musings and existential angst.

does everything have to have a theme now?

what if i don't want a theme?  i never had one before and i was a semi popular blogger (couple hundred hits a day in my prime).  and it's not that i am looking to become popular and be linked on fark.com or anything.  i really just want an outlet for my thoughts.  something to release the built up mental pressure.  good drugs are just too hard to find, so i'm stuck here.

would i like people to read this and find it enjoyable and just spend all their time gushing about how brilliant i am and telling everyone they know about how i changed their life?  well, yes, of course.  but that's not realistic.  i'm not willing to put in the effort to make that happen.

i'm a "don't try too hard to succeed, just wait for your name to move to the top of the list by attrition and/or by another's success" kind of person.

it's been keeping me at a nice level of mediocrity for a good decade and a half now.