Friday, May 31, 2013

Friday Night Musical Interlude May 31st, 2013 "Confessions and Small Things" Edition

Updated 835PM 6/1/2013: See below.

"East Bay" by Nils ("Up Close and Personal" release, 2009)


This is my Friday night musical interlude (FINALLY!).

Updated 835PM 6/1/2013: I am adding another picture I took at Larry's Lounge and swapping the order of the two. Otherwise, everything is the same. My day today (Saturday) was fine. I made it to the gym and had a decent jog and swim. I'm going to Old Ebbitt Grill tonight with Gary and Wendy in a belated birthday dinner for Wendy. I plan to post a new entry tomorrow. End of update.

Earlier, I went to Larry's Lounge -- even though I am loathe to break my routine, especially on a Friday night and to "go out early" before I've had time to do my usual Friday evening ablutions. However, I wanted to see Kristof. We had an ... OK ... time, the highlight of which was talking about what the findings in this article mean. And then LL began to fill up with all these 17th Street / JRs / Cobalt-like gay boys and you could feel the narcissism, cattiness, hatefulness, and vacuousness.

I cut that short and came home to post this entry and cook dinner (I'll do laundry tomorrow or Sunday). My dinner was quite good: steamed broccoli, rice (in a bag), and the grilled chicken and sausage bits from the Chunky grilled chicken and sausage gumbo soup.

I'm going out again in a little while, but I think to Nellie's.

Speaking of Nellie's, actress Alison Arngrim is scheduled to do a book signing on June 11th. She is famous, of course, for playing Nellie Oleson on the TV series Little House on the Prairie. Her book is Confessions of a Prairie Bitch.

I think I may just go to that.

No, the place is NOT named for Nellie Oleson. It's named for Nellie Storrs Newman Warren, the great great grandmother of one of the bar owners.

"I Can Only Imagine" by Kool & Klean (Volume IV, 2013)


Earlier at work, I received some good news from Sallie Mae, the Mystery Corporate-Wh0re Babylon that is now servicing my gargantuan Direct Loans student loan debt until the End of Time. My Title IV mandatory forbearance (due to excessive student loan debt) was approved without a hitch, so I'm good for another 12 months AND I still preserve my one remaining year of general forbearance. (In theory, you get up to 3 years of this kind of title IV forbearance).

As for my work week, it was OK. My initial (not yet finalized) annual performance evaluation was actually quite good.


Some good reads, two by Jonathan Chait and two by Paul Krugman (links embedded in titles):

Yes, Conservative Reformers Exist

Yuval Levin Dissembles Madly

Newt Economic Thinking (blog entry)

From the Mouths of Babes (NY Times Friday op-ed)


And now for something a little more Friday night upbeat ...

"All The Small Things" by Blink 182 ("Enema of the State" release, 2000)

This "official video" is surprisingly homoerotic in some ways, though my guess is they were just having some straight fraternity boy-like fun with it.


OK, that's all for now. I'm heading out now. I intend to update this blog at least once this weekend.

Oh, yes, t-storms are forecasted on Sunday evening and cooler and pleasant weather (highs around 77F) next week. No mega-Berumuda - Azores ridges of death are showing any signs of setting up shop in the WRONG position.


A Hot Pink Cultural Slug and Trails of Corporate-Sponsored Ooze: Yes, Capital Pride Time Is Nigh

**Updated 9:40AM 8/15/2014: See below.**

A giant (up to 8") fluorescent / hot pink slug oozing about on the slopes of Mount Kaputar, the highest point in the isolated Nandewar Range of northern New South Wales, Australia. Article here.

**Updated 9:40AM 8/15/2014: Content removed; the blog title no longer makes sense, but it's better that way**


In the meantime ...

I'm sorry I didn't get a chance to update this blog tonight (i.e., Thursday). I intend to post my Friday night musical interlude.

I had a really good gym workout tonight including a 5.5 mile jog and a solid half mile of swimming laps in the pool (actually, 36 laps where a lap is one pool width). I also had about 40 miles of weight-lifting, but I'm kinda bad at that.

The weather has turned hot, humid, and shitty. It reached 90F at KDCA and KIAD on Thursday and 92F at KBWI with dew points in the 65F to 70F range. (Of note, the Maryland Science Center, KDMH, reached 94F.) Tonight is muggy and humid with no precipitation anywhere in the area and nearly calm winds.

OK, I'm done for now.



Wednesday, May 29, 2013

KDCA Gets a Thunderstorm Dousing and Other Updates -OR- Just "Leave It To Bieber"

Bright yellow flowers growing under the wrought-iron fence at 1633 16th Street NW, Washington, D.C., 4:05PM May 27, 2013.


This is a VERY quick update at the 1AM hour. I have already posted the good news that I am going with my friend Andrea to see Billy Idol in concert at Wolf Trap on June 20th.


I also wanted to post a few other items.

Weather Update -- KDCA Actually Gets a Thunderstorm Dousing

As you may know, I have often complained including here recently about the crappy location, quality, and micro-climate of the Reagan Washington National Airport climate station (KDCA). As such, I should note when something weather noteworthy happens.

The Sterling (LWX) NWS enhanced radar in composite mode reflectivity at 5:16PM EDT May 28, 2013 showing t-storms starting to fire west of D.C. -- and moving more or less due east. Recall "composite mode" shows activity within the clouds as well as what is falling, so it tends to look more dire than "base mode" reflectivity.


The Sterling (LWX) NWS enhanced radar in composite mode at 6:27PM EDT May 28, 2013 showing t-storms now over D.C. and the near-in western D.C. suburbs including Fairfax and Montgomery Counties


The Sterling (LWX) NWS enhanced radar in composite mode at 6:52PM EDT May 28, 2013 showing t-storms clustered over the immediate D.C. area but starting to push eastward.


Yes, a thunderstorm drenched parts of D.C. and Arlington INCLUDING the little bucket rain gauge at the far end of the airport where the climate station sits.

The KDCA weather observations from 1752 to 2352 EDT (the 6PM to midnight observations), May 28, 2013 with the heavy precipitation amount and thunderstorm noted totaling 1.34 inches.


Even with this 1.34" for May 28th, KDCA is running 0.78" below normal for May month-to-date at 2.82" (normal MTD 3.60") and 2.99" for 2013 year-to-date at 12.58" (normal YTD 15.57").

Of note, KIAD and KBWI had much less -- 0.15" and 0.03", respectively.

The KIAD weather observations from 1752 to 2352 EDT, May 28, 2013 showing much less precipitation.


The KBWI weather observations from 1754 to 2354 EDT (the 6PM to midnight observations), May 28, 2013 with only a small amount of precipitation observed.


This is good news since (as noted) we need the rainfall. The bad news is that hot and humid weather is approaching with temps reaching 90F to 93F for highs for the next several days here in D.C and environs. But, again, this does not appear to be a semi-permanent pattern setting up for weeks or even months. The forecasted highs by early next week are back around 77F (which means about 80F, but that's fine for early June).

A bird bath in the yard of a small apartment building in the 1700 block of T Street NW, Washington, D.C., 6:18PM May 27, 2013.


I went to the gym tonight and had a really good workout including a 5.4 mile jog over 1 hour; about 45 minutes of light-to-moderate weight-lifting; and a half-hour of swimming featuring at least 32 laps / half mile swim. The chlorine in the pool is bothering my eyes as I write this.I should get goggles. Oh, yes, my weight was back down to a whisker over 153 pounds, right about at my low. I was "up" 4 pounds yesterday at 157 pounds, but I kinda thought that was going to happen.

As for tomorrow, I may go to dinner with Frank, or at least to happy hour at No. 9. I'll go to the gym again on Thursday and Saturday.

Larry's Lounge, Washington, D.C., 6:22PM May 27, 2013.

I went there on Monday evening and ending up staying for about 4 hours and met up with the extended gang -- Gary, Kristof, John, and Wendy, who brought two of her friends. I also had Frank come as well.


Not Sure Why I'm Posting This ...

"Leave It To Bieber"*

Oh, yes, teenage celebrity Justin Bieber seems to be having even more issues of late ...

*I saw that in another version of this story and I think it's brilliant. 

Above (left): Young Mr. Bieber flashing the paparazzi buzzing overhead in a helicopter with an obscene gesture or two; (right) Mr. Bieber's Ferrari, all "tricked out" with leopard spot pattern.

What a foolish 19 year old child. I hope he can snap out of it before he gets himself into real trouble. And the people he must surround himself with. It's "Katy, bar the door!" It's ALMOST enough to make me feel badly for him.


Flowers and small trees growing outside The Chastleton along 16th Street NW, Washington, D.C., 7:27PM May 28, 2013.


OK, that's all for now. My next planned update will not be until Thursday night.


Dancing With Billy Idol! (Or at least seeing him in concert at Wolf Trap on June 20th)

I'm going to see Billy Idol!

He is performing at Wolf Trap's Filene Center on June 20th, and I am going with my friend Andrea. (I'm not sure anybody else in the group was interested.) We are seated in the right rear orchestra section. The tickets were $48 each but with various taxes and surcharges including $5 just to have the tickets e-mailed, the combined cost $113.50, but it's worth it. I want to see him in concert (which is noteworthy since I NEVER go to concerts -- I've been to maybe 4 in my whole life).

Billy Idol is awesome, as I've talked about here and here.


Yes, yes, I know, he doesn't look like that anymore. He looks more like this:

But he's still really cool and I really like him and his music. Indeed, I had Dancing With Myself stuck in my head today. So let's follow the bouncing ball ...

"On the floors of Tokyo / Down in London town's a go-go / With the record selection / And the mirror's reflection / I'm a-dancing with myself...

"When there's no one else in sight / in the crowded lonely night / Well, I wait so long for my love vibration / I'm a dancing with myself ...

"So let's sink another drink / 'Cause it'll give me time to think / And if I had the chance, I'd ask the world to dance / And I'll be dancing with myself ..."

Again, yay!


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

A Poppy Seed and Blogger Madness -OR - I'm not exactly sure why I'm posting this entry ...


845AM 5/28/2013: Upon reflection and concern, I have revised this entry slightly.

OK, this is a rather fascinating "retro report" from The New York Times online (as posted onYouTube) concerning  a national panic from about 25 years ago ...

It's called "Crack Babies: A Tale From the Drug Wars (Retro Report)." The direct link is here.

You can skip the ad as necessary (after 5 seconds). It recounts the national hysteria (which I clearly I remember) from about 1985 to the early 1990s over "crack babies" that were going to cause societal devastation as a result of the crack cocaine epidemic of that period.

Now let's be clear: The crack cocaine epidemic and resulting violence was appalling and socially devastating to American cities, although I think the crystal meth epidemic of the 2000s was health-wise more destructive. 

The point, though, is that the hysteria about "crack babies" due to inner city pregnant women smoking the stuff was far beyond what the data showed either at the time or subsequently.* Despite this, the media-fanned hysteria was the basis for the massive, punitive, and counter-productive law enforcement / legal crackdown that contributed to the explosion in the American prison population.

The video shows TV news stories from the time and gives a sense of what it was like back then. Oh, and you have to realize that circa 1988, the country still heavily depended on the Big Three commercial networks for nightly news.

This crack baby meme / hysteria was an echo / updated version of the an earlier race-based drug hysteria in the media (press) hysteria back in the early 1920s (as reflected in the image of the headline above, likely from a Hearst newspaper). This was discussed in a sweeping 2007 History Channel documentary called Hooked: Illegal Drugs and How They Got That Way (you can find the three or four different parts of it on YouTube). The sultry, smokey-voiced narration by Barbara Rosenblat is just right for this documentary.

*On a personal note, my dad and his late girlfriend (Janet) had a problem with this very issue that stretched on intermittently for many years. But I specifically remember in the period 1989 to 1992 back in the BAD DAYS of New York City when he was still in New Jersey. Although I didn't live with him for this entire time, I still visited him regularly. I recall that he and Janet were frquently (as in at least weekly and sometimes more often) running up to New York City to Harlem.

I even recall the first time in 1989 he said that he had "gone to New York." As a 19 year old, it sounded exciting to me, until I realized why the two of them were going specifically to Harlem. They were making trips to a Methadone clinic where Janet went for her weekly allotments designed to ween her off other things -- except, of course, for the fact that the open-air drug market was next door doing a brisk business.

My two favorite stories (such as they are) that he told, both happening circa 1990:

One, he his late girlfriend, Janet, in their car pulled that was over onto the shoulder of the New Jersey Turnpike somewhere up near Exit 11 (or thereabouts). They were fighting to find it under the seats, dwith the doors wide open and both of them half falling out of the vehicle. Other cars whooshed or roared past at 75 - 80MPH, some fast and close enough to rock the car. I was not there but well can I imagine this scene. And the most amazing thing to me is the fact that a New Jersey State Trooper didn't espy them and check out this mess of a situation.

Two, my dad and Janet getting arrested in Fort Lee, N.J., in a ghetto-blasted park under the George Washington Bridge and spending the night in jail, only to have the judge before whom they went the next day turn out to be a high school friend of my dad, who recognized him and basically let them go. Wow.

No, I'm not making this up.

OK, I'm not sure why I posted this entry. My apologies.


Sunday, May 26, 2013

Lunar Walk and Asteroidal Talk -OR- A Good Hometown Holidays Memorial Day Weekend

The Regal Theatre "quoting" in post-modernist way an Art Deco style and set amid the "New Urbanism" in practice of Rockville town center, Rockville, Md., 2:59PM May 26, 2013.

This Sunday was a good day. Actually, this weekend overall was a good one (and there is one more day to it since tomorrow is the Memorial Day Federal holiday and I have off). I've already written about my Saturday walk about.

Quill wearing a fancy chapeau (is that the correct term?), Rockville town center, Rockville, Md., 5:15PM May 26, 2013.


For starters, my quasi-date last night with the fellow Frank went well -- both the dinner at Old Ebbitt Grill seated in the back Oyster Bar and later at Nellie's. I realize going with a (quasi-)date to a bar on a weekend night is problematic, but it turned out well.

I talked his ear off on pretty much any and every subject I could think of from tidal locking of the Moon* to Earth and its formation and likely role in facilitating the evolution of life on Earth to American politics and the need for structural reforms such as expanding the size of the House of Representatives to about 800 and/or increasing the number of U.S. States to about 75** to the "T" being out in the Ananda Corporation sign visible from Nellie's.

*We were walking to Nellie's up Vermont Avenue and crossing Logan Circle at that point, and the slightly-past-full Moon was stunning in the sky, silhouetted at one point on Major General Logan's heat.

**Yes, both of these are Michael Lind ideas.

He also walked me back home, and I showed him my dumpy, dusty little apartment. He is from Yorktown, Va., and I explained to him in tedious detail about the Chesapeake Bay  impact crater formed 35 million years ago when a roughly 2 mile wide asteroid (bolide) slammed into what is now the .southern tip of the Delmarva / Tidewater area. It was the event that ultimately led to the subsequent formation of the Chesapeake Bay as a river valley that "drowns" during interglacial periods.

The event itself was nothing less than cataclysmic though not nearly the magnitude of the Chicxulub event 30 million years prior to it. A Chesapeake Bay bolide-sized event today would be enough to severely disrupt human civilization globally. By contrast, a Chicxulub-sized bolide (6 miles wide) would result in an "extinction level event."

It was a very different world 35 million years ago with the Atlantic shoreline around Richmond and D.C. with tropical forests (our part of North America was located about 1,000 miles to the east/southeast well into the tropics courtesy continental drift). Without this event, the Eastern Shore would not exist -- D.C. (if it existed) would be on the ocean. I would have preferred that.

"You talk like this on dates ..." -- Sophia to Dorothy on The Golden Girls.

Oh, yes, he also got to meet Flippo, the goodest little plush hippo.

A crowd of people at the Hometown Holidays event, Rockville, Md., 3:52PM May 26, 2013.


As for today, I got up, got ready, and made it on the Metro to Twinbrook by 235PM (only 1 hour later than the original time). Quill had just gotten there and we rode the shuttle to Rockville Metro (the Red Line is closed this weekend above Twinbrook to Shady Grove).

We went over to Rockville to the sprawling Hometown Holidays event. The first thing we did was get lunch at Tara Thai. Thereafter, we walked over to the town square by the library where we met DD and his family. A few minutes later, Larry P and his friend Pete showed up. No, it wasn't a coincidence -- I had been arranging it by text.

LP and DD chatting on the astroturf placed at the library plaza of Rockville town square, Rockville, Md., 4:11PM May 26, 2013.


We sat on the AstroTurf in the dazzling Sun for a little while before going into the shade by a small fountain. Rockville's town center is actually quite nice.

I had a few text exchanges with Sandie -- my long ago Rockville land lady from the summer of 1992 -- but it didn't work out meeting up with her. Instead, Quill, Larry, Pete, and I left together in Larry's car. He dropped Pete off at his car at Grosvenor Park and then the three of us went to Bethesda where we had dinner at the somewhat pricey but overall pleasant Trattoria Sorrento. I would / will at some point go back there.

Trattoria Sorrento, Bethesda, Md., 6:23PM May 26, 2013.


Thereafter, Larry drove Quill back to Twinbrook to catch a bus she needed. I went with her and rode the Metro back to Dupont Circle.

While in the car going up Rockville Pike, I spotted and pointed out the stunning celestial triangular configuration of Venus, Jupiter, and Mercury low in the western sky at cobalt blue dusk. Larry had never actually definitively seen Mercury before, at least that he was aware of.

Schematic representation of the triple triangular conjunction of Venus, Jupiter, and Mercury in the night sky of May 26, 2013, source here.


I also had some text exchanges with my mom. She unexpectedly texted me.

The remaining pictures in this entry were sent to me by Chris T. on his random weekend treks about Alabama, where he presently lives.

Street view in Tuskegee, Alabama with the Macon County Courthouse tower visible, May 26, 2013.


I did not go to Larry's Lounge or Nellie's or any other place but instead I just went straight away home as neither Gary nor Kristof were around tonight.

I'm home in my dusty little lamp-lit apartment watching my comfort TV -- reruns of The Golden Girls, Frasier, The King of Queens. The window a/c is humming / whirling away.

Another street view in Tuskegee, Alabama with some sort of transmission tower in the distance, May 26, 2013.

It would appear that the New Urbanism hasn't yet quite reached Tuskegee.

Tomorrow (or at this point, later today, Monday), I will try to make the group brunch with Kristof at 1230PM at Trios.

Of note, Wendy may also join us. Today (May 27th) is her birthday. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WENDY!

Speaking of birthdays, this Sunday, May 26th was my "half birthday" since it is exactly six months from / to my birthday on November 26th.

Here was Chris T's destination: This unincorporated no-where place called Smuteye or Smut Eye, Alabama on May 26, 2013.

I'll try to go to the gym (it closes early tomorrow). I may also see Frank again tomorrow night.

OK, I think that's all for now. I may try to update the blog tomorrow night.


Saturday, May 25, 2013

D.C. Saturday Walkabout: Leafy Green Trees, Deep Blue Skies, and Spot of Sunlit Swimming Pool Turquoise

A trail leading from P Street in Georgetown into a thicket of trees, Washington, D.C., 3:10PM May 25, 2013.

This is just on the Georgetown side of the P Street bridge over Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway.

This is actually Rock Creek Park, although at this point (as shown on the map at left) it is extremely narrow. It's basically just on either side of the Rock Creek and the parkway that runs along it.

It spreads out into the "great green gash" farther north in D.C. and into Maryland.


I know I promised a "Saturday night jukebox" musical interlude entry (to replace the Friday night musical interlude I did not write last night because I got so tied up with this entry and then wanted to go out before it got too late).

However, I again do not have much time and there is no song I particularly want to post. It just might be the case that I'm forcing the weekly musical interludes and that just won't work. I have to want to post a particular song.

The 1900 block of New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, D.C., 2:31PM May 25, 2013.


So instead of a musical interlude, Gentle Reader, you're getting this entry. It features some of the pictures that I took today on my aforementioned roughly 3 mile round trip walk from my apartment over to Kalorama and then down to the Watergate and back with a 2-hour stop at the gym.

The 1800 block of New Hampshire Avenue NW, Washington, D.C., 2:33PM May 25, 2013. I used to live in the Harrowgate directly across the street from this triangular little park with its towering chestnut oak tree.


The reason I don't have much time is because I have a dinner date, sort of, with this fellow Frank I met about a month ago at Bua when I was getting dinner to go after the gym. We are meeting at Old Ebbitt Grill at the Old Bar or ('round the back side) the Oyster Bar. I'm hoping this Saturday night OEG visit is better than the disastrous one last Saturday night.

Thereafter, I am going to No. 9 and/or Nellie's. I went to both places last night, first No. 9 and then Nellie's. It's not that kind of date even if it is on a Saturday night. As it is, it won't shock me if he doesn't show up or we fail to meet.

The Argyle House at Massachusetts Avenue and 22nd Street NW. I had stopped at the "Spanish Steps" near here and was on the phone with my dad.


There was an absolutely stunning and gorgeous Full Moon hanging low in the southern sky, resembling like a circular white lantern. I couldn't stop staring it while walking down 16th Street.

OK, this didn't come out very well -- my cellphone camera is pretty low-quality for these kinds of things -- but here is the Full Moon just over the Chastleton Cooperative along 16th Street NW, Washington, D.C., 12:12AM May 25, 2013.


Speaking of Nellie's ...

Here is a late night scene from upstairs at Nellie's, Washington, D.C., 2:03AM May 25, 2013.


As for tomorrow, I am going with Quill to the Rockville Hometown Holidays festival, which apparently is in its 25th year. This means that my last time there -- in the long-ago and troubled late spring / summer of 1992 when circumstances brought me to the D.C. area for good a several months later in September -- it was the 4th "HTH" event. The Metro Red Line is closed north of Twinbrook Metro this holiday weekend, so we are meeting at Twinbrook Metro to catch a shuttle. We may meet up with my co-worker DD and his family.

A lovely tree in the small section of Rock Creek Park in Georgetown just off P Street and near the on-ramp to the parkway, Washington, D.C., 3:13PM May 25, 2013.


As for Monday, Memorial Day, I have no plans. The gym closes early, so I likely won't make it. I am also not going tomorrow. I made it to the gym today -- in fact, I just got back from there. I did a 4 mile jog on the treadmill, approx. 40 minute weight-lifting, and a 25 minute swim / 25 laps.

A graceful elm tree growing along the narrow trail that runs along the steep drop-off down to the Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway (the Rock Creek itself is on the other side of the parkway), Washington, D.C., 3:19PM May 25, 2013.


While in the pool (just before I got out), I experienced something very beautiful: The sunlight reflecting off a building across the street (Rhode Island Avenue) created at one part of the deep end a pattern of dappled light in a spot of vibrant turquoise blue water. I sat at the bottom for few seconds looking up at the surface 10 feet overhead and watching the brilliant shimmering of reflected sunlight that actually had prismatic hints of coruscating colors. Quite astonishing -- as if I were in a tropical lagoon somewhere.

To clarify, the pool is "basement" level and the windows to the "natatorium" face south/southeast and direct sunlight really only occurs on winter mornings -- and, needless to say, I've never been in the pool at that time.

Corner house at Olive and 27th Streets NW* at the very edge of Georgetown, Washington, D.C., 3:23PM May 25, 2013.

This house intrigued me. It is actually numbered 1228 27th Street (since "Olive" is an exception / side street located, confusingly, between M and N Streets; the name probably predates the general renaming of the streets at some point in the early 20th Century (1920ish?)).


Another view of the corner house at Olive and 27th Streets NW, Washington, D.C., 3:24PM May 25, 2013.

I think Chris H. and I will live there when we are together. Oh, and after I've hit the lottery.


Prior to the gym, I went on about a 3 mile walk on a route that took me over to Kalorama / the Spanish Steps, down to the Watergate, and then over to the YMCA. The day was dazzlingly sunny and gusty breezy, not to mention distinctly cool with temps. only around 65F. Oh, yes, the sh!tty and worthless KDCA climate station did NOT reach 70F today. It looks as though the high was 68F or a full 10F below normal. Overall through the 5PM preliminary update, the day was running 12F below normal at 57F. Don't panic about Fox News / GOP global cooling just yet because through yesterday, KDCA was actually averaging +0.6F above normal at 65.4F for May.

Yours truly at the Watergate, Washington, D.C., 3:41PM May 25, 2013. This is under the Watergate East.


I should mention that as it is Memorial Day, D.C. is being overrun with frickin' motorcyclists. You'd think this was Daytona Beach at, well, ANY time of the year. This also happens on Veterans Day. I really motorcycles -- primarily because of the explosive noise -- and that whole weird hybrid American sub-culture.

And one more picture of me at / under the Watergate East by the sunken fountains, Washington, D.C., 3:45PM May 25, 2013.


OK, that's all for now. I may not update this blog until Monday. There is a topic I want to discuss -- namely, I seem to be on the outs AGAIN with my mother. Specifically, I want to discuss the reason for this recurring state of affairs. Looking ahead, I don't ever see it really changing. But I'll save this topic for another entry.

Yes, I am running late again as I did last week.