Saturday, October 13, 2007

Denise's Al Gore event report

From Renee: Denise posted this in the comments late Thursday night. On Friday morning, it occurred to me that it really should be frontpaged, but I was running late. I created this guest blogger thread, complete with comment link first thing Friday morning, but the day was so crazy I never got around to telling anyone I'd done that. But I had a lovely retreat when all was said and done. Without further ado, Denise's report...

I flew through the hotel with my business colleague in tow behind my conference manager, who was SO COOL to do this for me. Plug for the Westin St. Francis - great place for a real SF experience.

We're in the back of the house and opens up the curtain and seats me three rows behind Barbara, Bonnie and Jackson - as well as Barbara's family. I don't know who is who, but if she has a son, he was very nice. I had a chat with him in the elevator earlier but had no idea who he was at the time. I'm not sure if the grandbaby was his daughter. There were two other young women around who could have been her daughters.

So Barbara, in her very chic red suit, gets up on her literal soapbox (more like a veggie crate) to reach the mic. After her welcome talk, which was really very short, she introduced Bonnie and Jackson, as well as two other singers who were excellent. They harmonized really well on "World in Motion", the song I was listening to them rehearse earlier in the day. That was kind of fun, too. Bonnie spied me in the hallway, smiled and I asked her if they wanted privacy as the hallway was filling up. She said yes, so I shut the doors. Just can't leave the job behind...sigh.

The next song they did was "I'm a Patriot", composed by Steven van Zandt. You can see him performing it here.

Then Bonnnie did my most favorite song, the John Prine tune "Angel from Montgomery." I'm a huge Prine fan, and her version always makes me tear up. She dedicated it to the women around the world that are "still having a tough time of it." Darn she has pretty hair! I took a few pix on my cell phone. She was playing with the kids sitting around her as Barbara took the stage again to introduce Al.

He took the stage in a really smart charcoal suit, looking really, really good. My business colleague was freaking out. I was just enjoying the moment. I won't go into what he spoke about in detail, as we all know what he cares about most these days. And he told some stories about the so called scientists who write to him to basically tell him he's full of it. (My words, not his). He talked about Darfur and how we could have prevented it, and still could, if we had our priorities straight. He didn't mention Burma, but he only spoke about 10 minutes. Ice caps, healthcare, a few jabs at the Bushies, but not by any particular name. Class act all the way.

Barbara came back on stage and related the story about when Gore was in front of the Senate and the whole thing with Inhofe. It was sweet how she motioned with the mic as if it was the gavel when she said "elections have consequences." And then the guy I think was her son ran on stage and gave her a campaign pin (Boxer 2010) with those words on it. I was able to snag a couple for me and one of my friends. I'm wearing it now.
Oh yeah almost forgot....the whole room erupted in a long chant of Run Al Run. Boxer didn't try to stop it :)

One more story to share - sorry it's hard to remember it all in detail. He talked about the cities in Italy that have walls around them because they used to be at war, like Florence and Siena. And how absurd that seems to s now. Or how weird it is to think that, at one time, Germany invaded France - and he gave a nod to the Senior Citizens in the audience and thanked them for their perserverance during WWII. He took a moment then to give a shout out for our troops. Then he said that we can prevent another world disaster if we just band together and take the step to make things better - TOGETHER.

Coverage of the event from tonight's Chronicle

Haloscan comment thread

Open Thread

Here's a new thread, since the old one has gotten pretty long.

Update: Something new I learned on retreat this weekend:

In Celtic and other folklore the otter is often characterised as a friendly and helpful creature, and is given the name 'water dog', alluding to these qualities. In the Irish story The Voyage of Maelduin, otters on the Island of Otter bring the sailors salmon to eat, and the Voyage of Brendan tells of how an otter performed this service for a hermit, even collecting firewood for him! St. Cuthbert is the patron saint of otters, and after standing waist-deep in the North Sea during his nightly prayer vigils, two otters would come and warm his feet with their breath and dry them with their fur.
Haloscan comment thread

Friday, October 12, 2007

Gore, U.N. body win Nobel Peace Prize

Via Yahoo News:

Former Vice President Al Gore and the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize Friday for their efforts to spread awareness of man-made climate change and lay the foundations for counteracting it.

"I am deeply honored to receive the Nobel Peace Prize," Gore said. "We face a true planetary emergency. The climate crisis is not a political issue, it is a moral and spiritual challenge to all of humanity."

More here.

Haloscan comment thread

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Hillary doesn't like being questioned

Found this via skippy...

in a rare departure from her tightly scripted remarks, the former first lady lashed out at an audience member steamed at her senate vote to declare iran's revolutionary guard a terrorist organization.

randall rolph, of nashua, iowa, compared the vote to the one clinton cast for the iraq war resolution, asking, "why should i support your candidacy . . . if it appears you haven't learned from your past mistakes?"

clinton hit back hard, saying, "the premise of the question is wrong, and i'll be happy to explain that to you."

then she suggested rolph was a plant, saying his question was based on something "somebody obviously sent you."

she soon backed down, telling him, "i apologize. it's just that i've been asked the very same question in three other places."
Well, Hills, it's an obvious question. Given that you feel that you can't admit your Iraq vote was a mistake, all we can hope for is some evidence that you've learned from that experience. And, yeah, we're going to find it a tad disheartening if you can't even give us that.

Haloscan comment thread

Monday, October 08, 2007

Open Thread

I've added a few new shared items here.

Found the Harvest Moon pic via Stumbleupon.

Haloscan comment thread

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Bless all creatures here below

Daughter sang with the children's choir today, and, since this is the Sunday closest to the Feast of St. Francis, the hymns centered around that. The opening hymn was one I'd never heard before, and it was *adorable*.

Today we celebrate a feast,
A holiday for man and beast.
We think of every friend who speaks,
barks and purrs and roars and squeaks.
As we sing we keep in mind
beings of a different kind.

Bless all creatures here below,
Lord, from whom all blessings flow.

We think of squirrels in the park
at play from morning light 'til dark,
and birds that sing on leafy boughs
in green fields with the sheep and cows
Dear that in the forest leap,
whales that swim the ocean deep.

Bless all creatures here below,
Lord, from whom all blessings flow.

Together with our pets we meet
friends with whiskers, tails that greet.
Muzzles wet beside our cheek
show us love they cannot speak.
Hold them tight so they will know
where we are they too will go.

Bless all creatures here below,
Lord, from whom all blessings flow.
There were three more verses. The last line, though, is what made me well up:

When at last we come to you, let our creatures be there too

Our creatures have just got to be there. If they're not, how could it be heaven?

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Haloscan comment thread

Ads that suck

This afternoon I went out to run an errand, and the car's engine died on me. As I mentioned in the comments earlier, at least I was in town, and wouldn't have to wait too long for Demetrius to come rescue me. But I still had a good half hour of waiting by the side of the road, which was more than enough time to contemplate one of my un-favorite billboards, seeing as it was staring me right in the face.

The ad is for a radio station. It features a closeup of a busty young Caucasian female, wearing a t-shirt. I can't say "blonde" or "redhead" or whatever, because they don't show her face. She's not a person, after all, but an object. The billboard instructs the viewer to listen to The Blitz 99.7 and "Pray for rain".

Ohhh! I get it! I mean, it's a little subtle, but I *think* this is what they were going for...

Yaaaaay! Clap, clap, clap! If it rain, we see lady's nipples!

Also, crops not die.
Haloscan comment thread