Archive for the August Category

THE MOTHER TONGUE REVISITED

Antonin Scalia, the Supreme Court Justice, is a man who has his head in the sand.  He insists that the law is what was written in 1776 – 1789 without any improvements to the law or the language.  You may recall that Scalia is the person who gave us George W. Bush when the hanging chad controversy in Florida took place.  I hold a thoroughly different view from Justice Scalia.  I hold that the mother tongue is a living instrument of continual improvement.  Some of these so-called “improvements” are worthless.  But nonetheless they are offered in the hope of improving the language.  What we have here as the Presidential campaign of 2012 starts are three new phrases or words that are of totally dubious quality.  I think that in the future, these three words or phrases will be pointed to as examples of outrageous thoughts.

The three phrases are “self deport,” “retroactive retirement,” and “legitimate rape.”  At this juncture, I do not intend to get into the arguments that are associated with these three phrases.  I am merely citing them because they are new words, they are interesting words, and they are outrageous words.

 

Let us start at the beginning.  There is a word or phrase that Mitt Romney, the Republican contender in this year’s election, has used very often but not recently.  The word he used is “self deport.”  I suppose that means that an unwelcome guest in this country will go down to the airline office and buy a ticket back to his home country.  This summer we were having the outside of the house painted by a fellow who came from Costa Rica.  When he was hired to do the job, I overlooked the fact that Manuel did not have solid footing in this country.  As a matter of fact, the Feds seemed to be on him to leave this country by August 1st, which was a fact that we did not know.  Eventually we got the house painted, even with rain delays and Manny taking days off to get his wife and children back to Costa Rica.  So I assumed that when Manny bought his ticket to go home, he was among the “self-deported” people in this great country.

To the best of my knowledge, the only person who ever used that phrase was Mitt Romney.  Upon examination, I am forced to tell you that I don’t understand what that phrase really means.  It is a phrase that could now be included as an addition to the mother tongue.  I think that Romney in the beginning had the impression that all of the twelve million illegal immigrants in this country could be encouraged to “self deport.”  But recently Romney has not used that word at all.  Be that as it may, we now have the word or phrase, “self deport.”  Questions about exactly what that means should be directed not at me but at Mitt Romney.

 

The second phrase is “retroactive retirement.”  This is another mystifying phrase that came from the lips of Mitt Romney.  What it means is that Bain Capital, the firm that Romney started, listed him as President, CEO, founder, and whole-hearted inspiration after he retired.  Three years after he quit going to work, his letterhead and his business cards and all of the other documents state that he was the owner of these titles.  If any questions came up about the actions of Bain Capital, Mr. Romney claimed that he had retroactively retired.

Now I am baffled by this term.  There was a time when fellow Republicans joined Romney in saying that he had “retroactively retired.”  But that lasted only a day or two.  They must have been struck by the silliness or the impossibility that goes with retroactively retiring.  But the fact is that the Romney campaign has given us “retroactive retirement” and “self deport.”  These are certainly not stellar additions to the mother tongue.  As a working wordsmith, it is my duty to report them to my great audience.

 

The final word is “legitimate rape.”  It is a word that comes to you from a Congressman from the state of Missouri who is running to unseat the female who is currently a Senator from Missouri.

Now what does “legitimate rape” imply?  Does it suggest such things are legitimate?  What about legitimate murder?  And how about legitimate stealing?

All of this comes to you through the efforts of Todd Akin, the congressman from Missouri who is trying to unseat the incumbent Senator.  At the beginning of this debate, Todd Akin was asked the following question about exceptions for rape in the stance that he was taking.  His answer follows: “First of all, from what I understand from doctors, that is really rare.  If it is a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing down.  Let’s assume that that didn’t work or something.  I think there should be some punishment but the punishment ought to go to the rapist and not to the child.”

It is generous of Todd Akin to say that the punishment should go to the rapist and not to the child.  All of us appreciate his generosity.  What about the woman, and who is to raise the child?  What we have here is a new term of “legitimate rape.”  As most of you know, I am 90 years of age and I have been around the block two or three times.  In the first place, “legitimate rape” is an oxymoron.  Second, it is absolutely stupid.  For Todd Akin to have used those words must make it clear how stupid he was and is.

On the second day after the controversy broke, Akin said he “misspoke.”  That is absolute horse manure of the rankest sort.  What he had to say was in accordance with the Republican lore on women.  They want men to control women’s bodies.  What balderdash.  They want men to call all the shots.  That is simply not the way it should be done.  Perhaps the only saving grace is that Akin did not claim that he was taken out of context.  That is a pretty weak reed to lean his case on.

This is being dictated on Tuesday morning, August 21st.  At the moment, the Republican Party is in great disarray.  High muckety mucks in the Republican Party are calling Akin to get him to resign.  Akin has until 6 PM tonight to withdraw his candidacy for being a Senator from Missouri.  As I dictate these lines, it is now before noon.  Nonetheless, I am beginning to pray that Akin does not resign and stays on the Republican ticket.  I am joined in that prayer by the incumbent, Claire McCaskill.  I fully realize that as a non-believer in religious affairs, it is unbecoming for me to pray.  But in this case of legitimate rape, I hope that Todd Akin stands his ground and is roundly defeated by the female incumbent Senator.

It is now 3:15 PM on Tuesday with Akin working against a 6 o’clock deadline to withdraw.  So far my prayers, such as they are, have been answered.  Akin is staying in the race, it says here.  If this nut case finally proceeds to the election, I will say that the power of prayer is overwhelming.

 

So there you have three new additions to the mother tongue. They are “self deport,” “retroactive retirement,” and “legitimate rape.”  My guess is that in future political campaigns, those quotations will come out of the closet and will be used for a number of years.  When it comes to “legitimate rape,” every decent human being should be revolted by that thought.  But that is what the man said.  He is a Representative in the House and he is a graduate of a Presbyterian divinity school.  What must this tell you about the divinity school?

So I am dictating this essay as a means of passing time until 5PM central daylight time in the fond hope that Todd Akin stays in the race to run against Claire McCaskill, the current Senator.

Six o’clock came and went and Todd Akin says he is remaining in the race.  He also tried to issue a sort of apology. Todd Akin’s past attempts at an apology did not sit well with the author of Ezra’s Essays.  I suppose that Todd Akin will seek God’s help in his campaign to be a Senator.  More than anything else, Todd Akin has advanced the cause of religious non-belief and women’s rights.  To Todd Akin and all of his followers, I would say only the following thought, “On with the rat killing.”  I look forward to the morning of November 7th and Todd Akin’s complete defeat.

Miss Chicka says, “Todd Akin is what you get when you teach creationism instead of biology and evolution.”

 

I agree with Miss Chicka.

 

E. E. CARR

August 21, 2012

Essay 686

 

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Kevin’s commentary:

It would appear the recent trend with Pop’s essays is that they are getting longer. This is a nice summary piece though, and ties together pieces of a few separate essays like “Language according to Mitt Romney” (currently unpublished), Retiring Retroactively, and Reflections on the Wahhabi.

As far as I know, as of the publication of this post, Akin has still not retired from the race. He hasn’t even retroactively retired. He’s just hanging in there, getting ready to lose rather hard. I’m kinda looking forward to that.

 

TIME

Perhaps I should spend more time in my bathroom in view of the fact that the preponderance of ideas that occur for these essays come to me during my bathroom visits.  I am not alone in extolling the virtues of the bathroom.  John Munro, the wonderfully gifted artist and composer, wrote a song not long ago called “While I Am Here.”   He is an Australian and moved there from his native Scotland a good many years ago.  When I asked Brother Munro the circumstances that led to his writing “While I Am Here,” he told me that he was taking a shower and the song came to him.  I would encourage all of my readers to pay attention to the words of John Munro and to take showers regularly.  The point is that some of his songs, some of his works, occurred to him as he was visiting the bathroom.

A blind man has great difficulty in making notations on inspirations that may occur while he is engaged in the bathroom.  Whatever notations I might save couldn’t be read by me.  The alternative is to call my wife and ask her to make a note on the cassette recorder that I will use at a different date.  Just recently one of the bathroom inspirations occurred to me.  This is basically a philosophical thought.  This rare philosophical thought holds that the time of day is mankind’s most democratic institution.

For example, when the twelve o’clock hour of the afternoon is reached, every man and woman takes a break to consider how the afternoon will proceed.  It makes no difference whether the man is a rich one or a poor one.  The fact is that the noon hour has been reached.  It is quite obvious that the rich man may dine on caviar and paté de foie gras while the poor man eats a bologna sandwich.  But that is not the point.  The point is that the noon hour has been reached and this applies to the wealthy man as well as to all others.  There is no such thing as having as having what Mitt Romney says as a retroactive noon hour.  As you can see, the time of day applies to everyone, which I consider to be our most democratic institution.  I realize that politicians will try to alter this concept by the introduction of daylight saving time.  But in the end, the time of day is mankind’s most democratic institution.

Everyone is restricted to the same number of hours.  Whether you call them days or nights, hours or minutes, it is the same for everyone.  This thought occurred to me in that holiest of places, the bathroom.  As such, I think it should be taken seriously.

It appears to me that two giant communist nations have undertaken a desire to tamper with time.  In Russia, for example, the same time, which is Moscow time, applies to Vladivostok on the eastern border of the Russia, and westward to the Polish border, a distance of about 3,500 miles.  This means that school children, for example, in the Vladivostok region reach school around the mid-morning hours that day.  But this is the Russian idea of democracy.  I don’t think much of it.

In China, another very large country, there is only one time zone, which is the time zone of Beijing.  But in the final analysis, the politicians may tamper with the time of day, but it all comes down to the thought that the time of day is mankind’s most democratic institution.

These thoughts about the time of day come to you from a man who has only intermittently worn a wristwatch. Actually, it was not a wristwatch but a wristwatch whose strap was folded in such a way that it would fit into a little pocket that men have in their jackets.  I only used it when I traveled.  Ordinarily I used nothing in the way of personal timepieces.  But be that as it may, I take great comfort in saying that the time of day is mankind’s most democratic institution.

It may also be argued that the time of day is mankind’s most autocratic institution.  However, the thought that the time of day is mankind’s most democratic institution came to me first.  I am willing to rest my case on that premise.

 

E. E. CARR

August 12, 2012

Essay 682

 

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Kevin’s commentary:

I had to create a new category — philosophy — to contain this post.

I think Pop may be amused to know that I too do some of my best thinking in the bathroom. For me it is the shower. You can ask any of my college roommates — when it came time to write any major paper for class, I would take what I called a ‘thesis shower’ which is exactly what it would sound like. Basically I would do a ton of research on the broad topic and then take as long of a shower as was necessary to assemble the research into the shell of an argument. I’ve been doing this since the highschool days with debate cases, and do it even still with my own personal blogs. I think it is fair to infer that the reason that the “Kevin’s commentary” section on this webpage is generally disjointed is simply that I do not tend to shower immediately prior to writing them.

In any event, I agree with the idea here that time is the greatest equalizer. All the money in the world cannot buy you a twenty-fifth hour in the day, and there’s something wonderful about that.

 

Pop’s response: The basic premise in this essay is that the time of day is the world’s most democratic institution.  I did not write this – but also the time of day is the most autocratic institution in the world.  This is a corollary thought.  If the time of day is our most democratic institution, then it must follow that the same time of day is our most autocratic institution.  If for example, I make a reservation to have a meal at 12 noon, I cannot object if the owner ignores me when I show up at quarter past the noon hour.

I did not write this because it would open up a new can of worms.  So I let the democratic proposition stand.

Ezra

REFLECTIONS ON THE WAHHABI

At the outset, it might be well for the author of this essay to explain the title.  In round numbers, the Prophet Mohammed lived about 1500 years ago.  The Prophet took several wives and they produced several children.  But if my understanding is nearly correct, two of his grandsons founded competing brands of the Muslim faith, the Sunnis and the Shiites.  In both the Sunnis and the Shiites, great restrictions are placed upon females.  I suppose the contention must be that if God had wanted females to be equal to men, he would have equipped them with a penis and a pair of testicles.  But God in his infinite wisdom did not so equip the female race.

During their lifetimes, the two grandsons of Mohammed fell into disagreement on religious principles.  For at least 1400 or 1500 years, Sunnis and Shiites have been at loggerheads with each other.  But they are united in one respect in that they agree that women are an inferior race.

Now we come to the Wahhabis.  They fully agree that God created the predominant sex or men and the inferior sex who are women.  But the Wahhabis upped the ante on restrictions on females.

The Wahhabis dominate much of the religious dogma in Saudi Arabia.  In that country, no woman is permitted to drive an automobile.  No female, as I understand it, is permitted to walk alone unless she is accompanied by a male relative.  When some young woman loses her father, she has to cast about for yet another relative to guard her when she appears on the street, lest she fall into terrible sin.  Apparently a young woman who has lost her father and who has no immediate male relatives is simply out of luck.  I suppose that she is relegated to stay home at all times.

I hope you don’t think that I am making this stuff up.  This is the situation that prevails in one of America’s closest allies, namely Saudi Arabia.  Now, what does this have to do with us?  I will tell you what it does have to do with us.

On this coming Monday, August 27th, the Republicans will meet in Tampa, Florida to approve the platform that they will conduct their coming campaign on.  May I suggest that it is clear that the Wahhabis, or the American brand of the Wahhabis, have captured the Republican convention.

Let us consider only those provisions that affect women.  Mind you, these provisions are not for Republican women but rather they are intended for every American female who will be affected.  Specifically, provisions in the Republican platform provide that every woman who becomes pregnant through normal intercourse or rape must carry that pregnancy full-term.  Perhaps I should have said “legitimate rape” which is currently in fashion these days in Republican circles.  There is no provision in the platform for modernity.  The platform chosen by the committee of the Republican Party will take us back to pre-historic times.  To complete the cycle, the Republican Party has presided over the ban on abortion clinics.  Try to get an abortion in the state of Mississippi or in the great state of Texas.  It’s not going to happen.  In some cases, those who offer abortion services are often killed.  See the case of the abortion provider in Wichita, Kansas.

This is the official position of the Republican Party.  Paul Ryan and his majesty Mitt Romney undoubtedly welcome this platform and praise it.  It is only a small step from decreeing that a woman who becomes pregnant, even if the cause is rape, will have to carry that pregnancy to term.  The next step, of course, is the limitation on birth control.  There are some druggists who refuse to carry birth control pills or devices.  And all of this is being done in this enlightened country in the year of 2012.  Those restrictions might be better suited to the year of 1012 than to 2012.

So the Republican platform that the delegates will be asked to approve next week says that there will be no abortions and no exceptions for pregnancies that result from rape or incest, and that the female is required to carry that pregnancy to term.  For example, if a healthy child is born to a woman as the result of rape, that woman will always be reminded of her rape or the incestuous relationship that caused the pregnancy.  But the religious authorities, principally the Catholic Church, have outlawed abortions.  Therefore, for the lifetime of the child the mother will have to be reminded of that terrible day when she was raped.

I believe that it is quite certain that the Republican convention will approve of the platform that will be put before them.  On second thought, there is no doubt that such a thing will happen.  This will vindicate the Missouri representative Todd Akin, who has now been drummed out of participation in that convention.  May I assure you that when Representative Akin used the term “legitimate rape,” he did not misspeak.  For years, there have been those in the Republican Party who subscribe to the belief that sperm in a rape or incestuous relationship is turned into a harmless concoction.  Todd Akin has apologized in a fashion but it is clear that he has not abandoned his belief in legitimate rape.

And so on Monday or Tuesday of next week when the Republicans approve of the platform, we will have taken another step toward becoming the Wahhabis.  The Wahhabis are dedicated to backward thinking.  The Republican Party is similarly so dedicated.  If Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney are elected, you may be assured that the battles over the female reproductive system have only started.

Very curiously, there are no restrictions on the male reproductive system.  Men can impregnate as many women as they can find without penalty.  Ah, but the female – that is a different story.  And if the female finds herself impregnated by a rapist, she will find no comfort in the religious authorities or the Republican Party.  In effect the church authorities believe that the female must have brought this pregnancy on herself.  That is the reason why the Wahhabis do not permit the females to drive automobiles.  They are saving them from themselves.  The female in an automobile could commit dozens of sinful acts.

The net result of what is being done by the Republican platform committee is, in my estimation, nothing other than a return to the Wahhabi principle that females can’t be trusted with their own reproductive system.  In effect, the Republican Party is saying to its female members, “Backward march.”

As you can see, I feel very strongly about impositions on the female half of this race.  If a female needs an abortion, that is her business alone.  It does not bother me in any fashion.  It does not affect my marriage, for example, nor does it affect the freedom that we enjoy in this country.  I view it simply as an attempt by the politicians and the religious authorities to curtail those freedoms.

So these are my reflections on the Wahhabi influence in our political discussions.  I fervently wish that we might have forward-looking discussions, particularly from the Republican Party.  But that is not the case.  We are marching backwards, according to the Republicans, and the Wahhabis are saying, “Americans, how to go.”

 

E. E. CARR

August 25, 2012

Essay 687

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From now on, essays written after this website’s inception will be posted alone to distinguish them.

It’s my personal belief that Republicans are trying to one-up each other with their batshit insane claims. There was a Shepherd-family thread about this topic recently — Connor posted an article about this amazing judge who wants to raise taxes to prepare to fight against the U.N. troops that will be sent into Lubbock, Texas in the event that Obama gets elected.  That one’s here.

Then dad posted about the legitimate rape thing, and I made sure they all knew about the GOP lawmaker who claimed that contracting AIDS from heterosexual sex was “virtually impossible.”

I don’t even know what to do with the Republicans anymore. They would be hilarious aside from that part where we sorta have to take them seriously.

As the Twitterverse might say, #bestparty

(#worstpossibleparty)

 

Tom Scandlyn Response: Country Speak

[Note from Kevin — Tom, a 92-year-old friend of Pop’s for many years, wrote this after reading “Black Speak” but his response primarily concerns essays about “Country Speak,” of which I published an example very recently. Alternatively, view all of Pop’s essays on language here.]

 

In math sigma means the sum of. The limits for the sum of are noted at the two arms of sigma.

The sigma for each human includes each and every event from birth to the current moment for each human. Events include physical, mental, and emotional encounters during each and every increment of time between the sigma limits. Thus, no two sigmas can be alike even for identical twins.

The greater the number of events sigmas have in common, the more the ability to communicate effectively is enhanced. When language is not shared, communication becomes difficult and reduced to gestures, drawing and other non-verbal aids. The sigmas of countries interact similarly.

Image of EEC's Sigma

Ed,

Your hundreds of essays reveal much about you and touch on many events of your sigma; thus, creating linkages with the sigmas of those who read them.

For example, I was born and raised to adulthood in a country speak part of the country. So your essays about country speak create links with me and bring floods of memories of my early life.

I enjoy and appreciate your essays and read them at the first opportunity after they arrive. Thank you for sharing them with me. Regards and good wishes always,

Tom Scandlyn, August 31,2012

 

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Kevin’s commentary: It is odd to comment on a comment, I feel. However I like the idea of publishing this style of long-form comment in the same way that blog posts may be published. So if you have those, please shoot ’em over to kevin.g.shepherd[at]gmail[dot]com.

BOA CONSTRICTORS REDUX

[A quite note from Kevin — This is now the third essay in this, er, saga. Check out parts one and two first. Part one was about both dicks and snakes, part two was mainly about dicks, and now part three concerns primarily snakes.]

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The word redux is a fancy one and it simply means, in this case, more on boa constrictors.  I always found the word redux uplifting and I hope that you find it likewise.

You may recall that in this space there was an essay having to do with the sad fate of a boa constrictor who was afflicted with erectile dysfunction.1  Specifically, in an effort to overcome the affliction, he wound up squeezing his lover to death.  But that is not the end of the story, which accounts for the use of the word redux.  Alone in his cage, the male boa constrictor suffered pangs of remorse but shortly after the incident that Viagra was supposed to solve, the male boa constrictor died.  This is an epochal event that left the local zoo boa constrictorless.

If Viagra had worked on boa constrictors, there would have been nothing to report, and this essay could be avoided.  The facts of the matter are that the announcer in a previous essay confused the word “erectile” with “reptile.”  And that is where we begin this sad story.

Millburn, New Jersey runs a very small zoo in which zoo animals or reptiles of each persuasion are involved.  The loss of the female boa constrictor from having been squeezed to death by her lover was not the only sad news.  In a few weeks, the male boa constrictor showed signs of dying in what the Welsh call “hiraeth.”  Hiraeth means excessive longing either for home or for a mate.  And so the zoo was totally boa constrictorless.

The zookeeper, in an effort to present a complete collection of reptiles, shopped around and eventually located a pair of boa constrictors whose cost was about $2,500.  So when the appointed time came, he asked to have this amount inserted in the budget for the purchase of a pair of boa constrictors.  This request was short-lived.  Unfortunately, the city manager was infuriated by the request of the zookeeper and exercised his executive authority by vetoing it.  He not only vetoed the idea of the expense for the boa constrictors but he also said, “Good gracious!  Do you think boa constrictors grow on trees?”  The zookeeper had never thought that boa constrictors grew on trees.  He was mortally offended by the remark of the city manager.

Then he had to face the fact that he had no boa constrictors to show to the children who visited the Millburn Zoo.  At this point, with both of his specimens of boa constrictors gone and with no prospect of replacing them, he did the obvious.  He visited a local store that sold crepe paper.  He bought yards and yards of black crepe paper to show how the city of Millburn missed its boa constrictors.  When he turned in a voucher to cover the cost of the crepe paper, the city manager again was infuriated.  He revived his remark about boa constrictors growing on trees.  So an attempt was made to gather the unused portions of the crepe paper and return them to the store that sold crepe paper.

This is where we stand at the moment.  Millburn has no boa constrictors to show the children who visit the zoo.  The city manager is enraged, and the zookeeper is enraged at the city manager for his cheapness.

Now I report all of these developments to you as a means of covering my backside when I turn in this essay to the founder, manager, inspirational leader, and janitor of this website.  When I submitted my matchless essay to the founder of the website, he commented for all of the world to read and hear that “Pop (meaning me) has produced an essay involving dicks and snakes.”  I have very little understanding of what the term “dicks” means but I assume that it has something to do with reptiles.2

But I could not let this matter rest without reporting to you, my esteemed readers, about these developments.  It is for this reason that the title of this essay has to do with boa constrictors redux.  The passing of the two boa constrictors in the Millburn Zoo leaves me with bottomless grief.  And to think it all started over a bottle of Viagra!

The makers of Viagra must know of the intensity of feelings that product produces.  And now, this being Sunday, I will leave you to pray for the heartless city manager who vetoed the request to purchase new boa constrictors as well the crepe paper that was intended to be used to line their empty cages.

Mightily I hope that the owner and general manager of this website has been moved by this brief written story about these precious snakes.  But the owner and chief executive officer of this website temporarily lives on the West Coast and he may never know the grief that Millburn, an eastern city, is undergoing.  I hope that you will watch this space for further developments having to do with the Millburn boa constrictors.  They will be sadly missed.

 

E. E. CARR

August 26, 2012

Essay 689

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Kevin’s Commentary: This is the third essay in this saga. Read parts one and two.

1.This… I feel like this didn’t happen. I am almost positive that this did not happen. But I can’t be sure. I don’t doubt that the two constrictors died, however.

2. This comment would be more believable if the essay published immediately prior to this one was not about different ways to talk about dicks.

 

Also, I am wondering how many more titles Pop can come up with to give me. A lifetime of reading has given the man rather a lot of words to work with.

And again, to anyone wondering where I get my personal inclination towards bullshitting and weirdness… as Nitasha remarked tonight upon hearing the premise of this essay, the apples did not fall far from the tree.

SYNONYMS FOR THE MALE UNMENTIONABLE

Over the past few days or weeks, I have been negotiating with an entrepreneur who wishes to establish a new website for the purpose of making my essays available to all of mankind.  I view this as a means of spreading the gospel to all four corners of the world.  You can find it at www.ezrasessays.com.  The general manager of the website is a fellow called Kevin Shepherd, who also is my grandson.  As new essays come into being, they will be posted on the website.  It seems that our anxious readers will have access to them without waiting for the United States Postal Service to bring hard copies.  The readers of Ezra’s Essays who do not have computers will see no change, as they will still be mailed copies of this testament.

The website has just been placed in operation.  Mr. Shepherd is anxious to have new contributions for his postings.  When I took this job to produce new essays for Mr. Shepherd, I knew that I was taking on a noble responsibility that would have far-reaching consequences.  It is sort of like contributing to a publication dedicated to the writings of Winston Churchill.  I have never been known to react unfavorably or to quail from stringent requirements.

The first new essay that I contributed to this website was an essay in which I let my brain run a bit exuberantly.  It was called “Boa Constrictors, Rattlesnakes, and Other Reptiles.”  It had to do with an announcer reading an advertisement instead of the canned variety.  I assume that the announcer had to read this advertisement because something must have gone wrong with the recording device.  The essay had to do with the virtues of a product called Viagra.  On two occasions during this short commercial, the announcer mistook the word “erectile” and pronounced it as “reptile.”  That of course set my brain to working about how reptiles would deal with erectile dysfunction.  I submitted my copy to the manager of the website and waited for some response.

It took not long for Mr. Shepherd, the manager of the website, to respond.  He said that Pop (my name to my grandchildren) wrote an essay that had to do with “dicks and snakes.”  And so my brain, such as it is, went to work recalling all of the names for the male sex organ that were immediately available.

Calling the penis by some pseudonym is an ancient game.  It is practiced by every male that I can remember and it may be practiced by females as well.  There is nothing sinister or evil about this practice.  It is simply the desire on the part of almost all human beings to call the sex organ by a more palatable name.  And so my research of my memory has produced a total of six names.

 

The first name is a pseudonym for penis which is an ancient one.  In polite circles it is referred to as the pecker.  The word pecker may bring to mind the pecking for corn that is done by a rooster.  I doubt seriously that this is the derivation for the word pecker.  But be that as it may, the word pecker has been with us for all of my lifetime.

 

The second pseudonym for the male unmentionable is a word that I recall from my days at the Clayton, Missouri public school system.  That word is called “peter.”  Why the male sexual organ would be called a peter remains unknown to me.  But to exclude the word peter from this research would be a grave injustice.

 

The third word viewed as a pseudonym for penis is called “dick.”  This is a word that the general manager of the website referred to when he said that I had submitted an essay having to do with dicks and snakes.  I suppose that many of my readers will conclude that I am a poor researcher.  The fact of the matter is that the word dick, used as a pseudonym for penis, is acceptable in most circles.  When the general manager said that my comments had to do with dicks and snakes, it struck me that the word “dicks” is a recent innovation to the cause of “pseudonymity.”

 

Now we come to a thoroughly familiar word that is a synonym for the male sex organ.  And that word is “prick.”  I am thoroughly familiar with that word, prick.  It also refers to disliked human beings, including bosses, who are called “pricks.”  I worked in my long career for a few pricks.  The word prick is not actually descriptive.  If a man is a prick, he will sooner or later get the idea that that [sic] is what his subordinates and associates think of him.

The chief vice president of AT&T was a small man from southern Georgia who was a prick in every sense of the word.  His name was Henry Killingsworth.  He is the guy who in a Christmas letter wrote that he was going “to take the slack out of the trace chains.”  This word has to do with cotton planting, which is ordinarily done with mules by black people.  So when Killingsworth used this word, I thought immediately what a prick he was.  There is no such thing as a good prick.  When a man is called a prick, it means that his subordinates and his associates come pretty close to giving up on him.  You may take my word for it that Henry Killsingsworth was a colossal prick.

 

Another word to use as a pseudonym for the penis is called a doniker.  It is not a wide-spread synonym.  It occurs to me that the main use of the word doniker came from a gentleman whom I greatly admire named Harry Livermore.  I worked for Harry in Kansas City and again in Chicago.  In short order, we found ourselves in New York where our friendship would continue.  When the occasion arose to Harry Livermore when he needed to urinate, he always announced that he needed to “drain his doniker.”  Again, I have no idea where doniker came from.  But I do know that Harry Livermore was the most affable of men.

During World War II, Harry and Jean Livermore had three small children.  Nonetheless, Harry volunteered to serve in the American Navy.  During that service, the ship Ticonderoga, an aircraft carrier, was hit by a kamikaze that nearly destroyed the ship.  On that occasion, at least 350 of Harry’s shipmates were killed.  I have often said that if I were alone on a battlefield, I would like very much for my battlefield mate to be Harry Livermore.  I can think of no higher compliment that I can pay to him for his courage.  Harry died about four years ago at the age of 93 or thereabouts.  I think of him often.  I am still in contact with Tess, the woman that Harry married when he was about 88.  She and I have a mutual admiration society for Harry.

 

One of the most widely-used synonyms for the male unmentionable is called the “cock.”  Again, I am not so sure about where this word came from.  But certainly it is widely used and we can not exclude it from our research.  It may not have the lilt of the word doniker, but it must be included to establish my credentials as an astute researcher.

 

Well, there you have all of the pseudonyms for the male unmentionable.  I believe that I should be lauded for my efforts in this research report.  I  know of many publications that would be anxious to have this research.  I will soon offer this research to the publications from MIT and other such high flown institutions.  I suspect that they will be thrilled to have it.  In the meantime, I am the only contributor to writing Ezra’s Essays.  This goes back to the fact that Ezra’s Essays are indeed named for me.

And so this Saturday afternoon was spent in researching pseudonyms for the male unmentionable.  I doubt that you will see such research in any other publication, so you should revel in its exclusivity.  And to think that my grandson set off these fireworks by saying that his grandfather should deliver an essay that dealt with dicks and snakes.  It looks to me as if this new website will soon become a fountainhead for the wisdom of all mankind.

 

E. E. CARR

August 25, 2012

Essay 688

~~~~~

Most of Pop’s readers get Ezra’s Essays mailed to them; the first part of the essay is for them.

I had never heard of “doniker” or “peter” before so I looked them up on www.urbandictionary.com, the slang dictionary. Came up with nothing for either, which in retrospect shouldn’t be particularly surprising given that the site is mostly populated by people in their teens and twenties. Still, it has almost never failed me before, so the result of two negative hits in a row was unexpected. Accordingly, I am glad that this website has ensured that neither of these oh-so-valuable words will be lost to posterity.

I’m also pleased to admit it gives me no small pleasure that my captioning of each essay, available on this page, inspired this new essay and in part the next one.  There are probably not many 90-year-olds who spend entire Saturdays looking up different ways to say penis.  I suppose that I am lucky that my grandfather is one of the few who do.

JOHN EAMONN THE EIGHTH

This week there is a ground-breaking aspect to this essay in that it is being dictated before breakfast.  Of the nearly 700 essays that I have written, this is the first one to be dictated without anything in my stomach.  More than anything else, this essay is to commemorate the birthday party that was given to me and attended by me on August 4th, 2012.  I wish to dictate this essay before it is lost to the memory of man.  If things go favorably, I will even attempt to explain the title.

As happens on many occasions, August follows July.  On some occasions, August gives us the fourth day, which is the birthday of Barack Obama, as well as my own.  I must observe that having the same birthday as Mr. Obama does not make me a president.  But in 2012, the stars were aligned in proper order and on this August 4th, there was a party to celebrate my 90th birthday.  This is something to be celebrated in view of the fact that I never expected to see my 21st birthday, my 22nd birthday, or my 23rd birthday.  So you could say that I am gambling on the casino’s money.

As the date approached, we were having the house painted, not in celebration of my birthday but because the painter, whom we have known for quite a while, had to leave this country on or about August 1st.  Somehow or another, Manuel, the painter, had failed to file the proper immigration papers with the United States government and he had reached the territory where he was going to be “self-deported.”  I like to use the term self-deported because it shows that I am a devotee of Mitt Romney, who originated this wonderful phrase.  Every day as we approached the first of August, I listened outside to determine whether Manny was here or whether he was being deported by the U.S. government or by the self-deportation system.

Manny got the house done eventually and the stage was set for the grand celebration of my 90th birthday.

The attendees were, of course, my wife, Miss Chicka, and even myself.  Also in attendance was my daughter from New York, Palm Beach, and some place in Connecticut who attended with her husband, Walter Nollmann.  Maureen is usually called Blondie by me.

The second daughter is called in these circles Spooky Suze, a derivation of Suzanne.  She attended with her husband Carl Shepherd, the king of the IPOs.

Then there were the five grandchildren.  There are two who currently live in San Francisco.  They are called Connor and Kevin.  Working further east, another grandson, Andrew, attends Southern Methodist University(SMU) in Dallas.  Andrew and I had a lot of catching up to do on the New York Mets baseball team.  Naturally there was William, whom you may recall from an essay called “Will Yam” of some years ago.  William intends to attend SMU this fall.

Then we have John Eamonn VIII, who generally presides over the proceedings.  You may recall that the Anglican Church was founded by the King of England who was known as Henry VIII.  It has always seemed to me that John Eamonn deserves a title such as “the eighth.”  I hope that takes care of any questions about the title of this monumental essay.

There were also two girlfriends who attended.  There is a girl from Florida who attends Southern Methodist and she is very friendly with Andrew.  The other attendee who was visiting in New Jersey appeared to know Kevin from attendance at Northwestern University.

The meal was cooked by Paulo*, who brought three assistants who served the meal.  Paulo is a good friend of mine and Judy, and is considered largely as a member of the family.  He comes from Brazil, with whom we have always had friendly relations.

Well, that is the cast of characters who attended the grand affair.  We had several champagne toasts, which drew great praise from Paulo because he and the kitchen staff were included in them.  Paulo said that he was especially flattered to be included with the family.  I would have it no other way than to include Paulo and the people in the kitchen.  When I drink champagne, everyone around me also drinks champagne.  Everyone deserves a drink of champagne now and then.

As the event preceded, Miss Chicka, my wife, commanded the attention of the attendees to announce that I was going to make a small speech.  This came as great news to me, and I could hardly wait to hear what I would say.  First I thanked everyone for traveling all this distance just to have dinner with me.  Then I called attention that on this day, August 4, the remnants of the WWII raid on Ploesti were finally gathered together.  In 1943, I was one of those remnants.

I went forward to proclaim that I was especially proud that none of my descendants have ever succumbed to the ignorance and hide-bound bureaucracy of organized religion.  I think at this point, there was another champagne toast to the non-religious nature of this gathering.  Finally, I closed my speech with the thought that my descendants are well-educated and doing quite well.  In that circumstance, I urged all of my descendants to reach down and help those who are struggling.  I believe that to help someone who is struggling is a noble undertaking.

My speech probably took only seven minutes or so and with that the drinking and eating started.

Under the rules of Irish conduct, a grand gathering such as this one is the occasion for at least two or three fistfights.  But this was a peaceful assembly who made so much noise in talking to each other that there was a din that must have been noticed by the neighbors.  But it was all in a good cause.

One of the high points in the proceedings had to do with grandsons Kevin and Connor who arrived at JFK Airport.  Apparently a car was sent to pick them up but the driver had instructions to avoid tolls at all cost.  We became anxious about their non-appearance.  A tweet was broadcast.  They said that they were crossing the George Washington Bridge.  In my will, I am going to give these two grandsons my globe, which will demonstrate that going through Manhattan, their driver took them about 60 miles out of their way.  Now both of these grandsons are college graduates with all sorts of academic credentials.  Apparently none of those credentials had to do with geography.

So at last the celebration of my 90th year drew to a close.  I must say that from my standpoint it was an enjoyable occasion.  It was good to see my children, their husbands, our grandchildren and their girlfriends.  Now I am beginning to feel a little mellow about this occasion, which is unlike me.

You should also know that on August 1st of this year, John Eamonn reached his 15th year.  So Jack as he is called and I really shared this celebration.  It gives me great pleasure to announce that this affair is named after John Eamonn VIII who is our youngest grandson.  I suspect that I had better quit this dictation because the young lovely women might tend to write me off as an old codger.  Of course, we can’t have any such designations in the family of Carr.

 

E. E. CARR

August 20, 2012

Essay 685

 

~~~

Kevin’s commentary:

*Names outside of my family redacted. Any family members previously unaware of this website will be made aware of it by later today, so they can yell at me if they’d like and I’ll take em down, though candidly I see no reason for them to do that.

Cab shenanigans aside, Pop’s birthday was basically awesome. Shepherd-Nollmann bickering levels were actually shockingly low, because over the years the grandchildren have gradually become better and better at stopping their parents from attempting to discuss politics. This is for the best.

One of the funnier moments for me that wasn’t mentioned here was when Pop discovered that Jen was partially of Welsh descent. He immediately played her an old Welsh poem/hymn which, while undeniably pretty, made the trainwreck music from this post seem positively cheery. He did this without much warning and watching the expressions of everyone in the room change to try to figure out what was happening was pretty priceless.

Also, I come away from this post with two new nicknames for my particular parents, which I very much enjoy. I certainly hope that this is not the first time “Spooky Suze” has been used.

 

 

MITT AND WILLIE

The principal characters in this essay are Mitt Romney, the Republican aspirant to the presidency of the United States, and a fellow called Willie Nelson, who is a singer of folk songs.  My memory is that Willie Nelson is perilously close to being 80 years of age.

The knock on Mitt Romney is that he is not likeable.  When he came down the street, for example, carrying a bag from a hardware store, he was asked, “What is in the bag?”

Mitt replied, “Only some hardware items.”  He did not say, for example, that the bag contained a hammer, some tacks, or a screwdriver.  He said that it contained some hardware items.

Recently, when he alighted from his private jet, he was asked, “How did the ride go?”  He said, “That is a good aircraft.”  He did not say, “That is a good plane.”  Somehow, Mitt Romney always seems to produce an awkward phrase.

Apparently the pollsters keep track of a likeability index.  Mitt Romney has been through all of the primaries, which were shown on television.  But somehow he seems to register a very very low score on the likeability index.  That man is not one with whom I would enjoy having a drink.  His language is basically stilted.  And as I said earlier, his language is quite awkward.

Now I am including thoughts that go back a good many years having to do with likeability.  Before the Second World War, I played a few games of semi-pro baseball.  The owner of the club was Borbein-Young Automotive Parts.  Each week that we played, our nicknames would come from new automotive parts that Borbein-Young was featuring.  We had one problem in that Gus Borbein was in charge of nicknames and was having a special on ball bearings.  We were known as the Borbein-Young Ball Bearings.  That was all right with us as long as Gus Borbein paid us $4 or $5 when the game was finished.  We did not have uniforms for our players on the Borbein-Young team.  When we played a club dressed in uniforms, the efforts of the Borbein-Young team were greatly enhanced.  I was the catcher on that club and when one of the uniformed players came to bat, I gave the signal for a high hard one at the batter’s head.

Similarly, when I played a bit of baseball for my high school, we played a private school called John Burroughs.  They were fancy Dans who had the latest in uniforms and baseball gear.  When we played John Burroughs High School, there was often a fist fight or more often there were cases when our pitchers would throw high, hard ones close to the Burroughs batters.

After all of these years, I am still of the opinion that Mitt Romney is like the baseball clubs with uniforms who played against us.  And there is a distinct similarity to the John Borroughs private school mentality.

The answer to all of this is that Mitt Romney is not a likeable person.  Likeability seems to have escaped this wealthy son of the founder of American Motors.  Mitt is not the kind of guy who could share a dirty joke.

On the other hand, Willie Nelson, the troubadour, is an extraordinarily likeable gentleman.  I suspect that Willie is now in his early 80s.  For many years, he had traveled from one engagement to another on a bus that he had customized to provide sleeping quarters.  The rest of the band who traveled with Willie had beds on the bus as well.  Willie Nelson is an icon in American music, and when it comes to likeability Willie is the exact opposite of Mitt Romney.

A number of years ago, Willie Nelson recorded a song called “The City of New Orleans.”  It is about an Illinois Central railroad train which was dubbed “The City of New Orleans.”  It ran between Chicago and New Orleans.  When it was on the return trip to Chicago they would dub this train “The City of Chicago.”   For the purposes of this essay, we will confine ourselves to the southbound odyssey which appears in the song.  That also rhymed with Kankakee, the city 60 miles south of Chicago.  I have always marveled at someone finding a rhyme for Kankakee.  That rhyme of course is odyssey.

Willie Nelson is the sort of person to whom I would be immediately drawn.  The voice echoes friendliness.  In “The City of  New Orleans,” there is a line that holds:

Good mornin’, America, How are ya?

Don’t you know me?  I’m your native son.

I’m the train they call the city of New Orleans

And I’ll be gone five hundred miles when the day is done.

 

When Willie Nelson sings this song, it is clear that Willie is greeting us all when he says, “Good mornin’, good mornin’, America.  How are ya?  Don’t you know me?  I’m your native son.”  I suppose that those who were fortunate enough to get tickets to a Willie Nelson concert would linger around the stage after the songs were finished, hoping to meet Willie Nelson.  In short, Willie Nelson is a thoroughly likeable man.  He comes across as totally genuine.  He is the fellow that most of us hope would live next door.  Mitt Romney is none of these things.

Before this essay is finished, I wish to say some self-laudatory things about none other than Uncle Ezra.  The way my life has worked out, I have spent an enormous amount of time traveling to nearly all sections of the world.  The section most traveled was of course Europe.  And it has always come easily for me to make friends.  Sven Lernevall, a Swede I have known for more than 40 years, is one of those friends.  I have always found that if when meeting a person, you shake hands with a bit of firmness and look someone directly in the eye, you have an excellent chance of establishing a friendship.  I do not mean to say that I am on a par with Mitt Romney or Willie Nelson, but I am trying to say that making friends is, for me, the most easy and enjoyable part of human relations.

But here is the test.  The next time you hear Willie Nelson sing “The City of New Orleans,” try to imagine Mitt Romney singing the part about “Good mornin’, good mornin’, America.  How are ya?  Don’t ya know me?  I’m your native son.”  My guess is that you and the rest of the audience will gag as Romney tries to mouth these words.

This essay is being dictated at 4 PM on Thursday, the day of Mitt Romney’s acceptance speech.  I dare not show it to Mitt Romney because he might blubber when it gets to the point about “good mornin’, how are ya?”   I suspect that there aren’t many who will await Romney’s address this evening with some anticipation.  For Uncle Ezra, it could be said that I have been following what Mitt Romney has had to say over the years.  You know that this is his second try for the presidency.  Perhaps I will wait up to hear Romney’s speech.  On the other hand, Joseph Ratzinger, the Pope, moved the midnight mass at Christmas to 10:00 PM to allow His Holiness to get a better night’s sleep.  In this case, I may emulate Joseph Ratzinger and go to bed early, say at 11 PM, foregoing the fact that I will miss what Mitt Romney has to say.  However, I am certain that the television commentators will have plenty to say about it tomorrow.

So at this point, my tendency is to take leave of this essay, knowing that the state of the union is in good hands.  Instead of listening to Mitt Romney, I am going to spend the bulk of the evening thinking about how it would sound if he sang the Willie Nelson lines about “Good mornin’, good mornin’, America.  How are ya?  Don’t ya know me?  I’m your native son.”  I suspect that imagining Mitt Romney singing those lines will chase me under the bed until the election finally occurs.  But remember this: it is always easy for a guy like Willie Nelson to make friends.  Unfortunately, his counterpart, Mitt Romney, is a stuffy sort of person.  All of the speeches in the world to be delivered by his wife will not alter the fact of his stuffiness.

So at this point, as we approach the dinner hour, I will retire to consider whether I have the strength to hold out until 10 PM when Mitt Romney will cause the American electorate to gag while he tries to be friendly and likeable.  I believe that at 10 PM I may play “The City of New Orleans” to sustain myself for the ensuing day.  Let us pray.

E. E. CARR

August 30, 2012

Essay 690

 

~~~~

I had no idea Pop played semi-pro baseball. I think I may have heard it once or twice but I think I mentally put it next to his assertion that he was a champion longjumper.

Now, while I don’t disagree with the analysis here with regard to Romney/Nelson. Clearly the latter would be a lot more fun to hang out with.  But critically I think it’s important to note that Pop never really said that dislikability constitutes a reason that Romney would make a poor president. I mean sure, maybe he’ll be a little weird among other heads of state and stuff like that but let’s be honest, how likable a person seems is a pretty awful metric for determining how good of a president he would make.  Likability voting gets us presidents like Bush, so let’s not do that — and I’m not reading here that Pop wants us to do that. I think Pop was purely trying to say he doesn’t like the dude.

CHRISTIAN MINGLE

I rarely listen to commercials broadcast on television.  One recently caught my attention.  The title is “Christian Mingle.”  Under ordinary circumstances, when I have some curiosity about a commercial, I ask the sponsors of the commercial for some detail.  In this case, I do not desire to get involved with Christian Mingle because I suspect that it would result in them getting my phone number or address that I do not wish them to have.  Beyond that, I am not a Christian.

But it appears that it is nothing less than a dating service.  We always look askance at dating services because of the prostitution angle.  Whether Christian Mingle is involved such services, I have no idea.

What it comes down to is that somebody must pay for the voluminous advertisements on television.  There is a financial aspect to Christian Mingle that I do not have a handle on at this moment, but the airwaves on cable television frequently carry these advertisements for them.  In the final analysis, the sponsors of Christian Mingle must make a profit.  I do not know whether they enroll Christians or whether it is a one-time event.  I was wondering whether they would reject one who said that he was not a Christian.  And how would they go about defining how much of a Christian he or she really is?  Could Todd Akin and Paul Ryan join Christian Mingle?

The ads on the television screen appear with such regularity that it is clear that someone must be footing a fairly decent bill from the television networks.  They advertise that they are growing by leaps and bounds and handsprings.

I don’t really know why the Christian Mingle ad has aroused my curiosity.  You may recall that I wrote in an essay that in 1938 or 39, I endeavored to finally learn how to dance.  This was in St. Louis and there were ads in the telephone directory for dance studios.  On the appointed day when I went to the dance studio on Delmar Boulevard, I was met by four or five scantily clad women.  There was no indication of a phonograph to play music that we could dance to.   I was only 18 or 19 at the time, and finally I realized that something was badly ajar here.  As it turns out, prostitution services in St. Louis generally list their services under the heading of Dance Instructors.

I suspect that the inmates of this whorehouse had many moments of belly laughs and knee slapping as they recalled this dumb jerk (me) actually wanting to get dance instruction.  I believe that more than anything else, these thoughts propelled my interest in celestial beings and its advancement of my spiritual life.

From that day forward, I have had great suspicions about such things as dating services and Christian Mingle.  But at the end, I am not a Christian.  Therefore I could not mingle with comely Christian females.  At this point I must ask, where are such things as Jewish mingles or Muslim mingles or even Mormon mingles?  Perhaps this mingling may have tremendous commercial possibilities.  I simply want to get a handle on it before I invest my vast fortune into the mingling proposition.

I realize that this is not an issue of great importance.  But it has aroused my curiosity and I will pursue Christian Mingles until my curiosity is gratified.  But in the meantime, if any of you become involved in Christian Mingles, I would like for you to tell me how it works, particularly how the financial arrangements work.

Well, as you can see, even in my post-partum 91st year, I still am able to exercise my curiosity.  And if any you become involved in Christian Mingles, I wish for you to tell me what it has done for your spiritual life.  Until that has been accomplished, I will view the Christian Mingles as a dodge, much like the dance instructors in St. Louis advertising the wares of prostitution.  I will wait with bated or unbated breath until I receive some reports of your experiences with Christian Mingle.

 

E. E. CARR

August 11, 2012

Essay 683

 

~~

I’ve got some Christian friends on Facebook. I will use the previous post as a hook to get them to come to this site, and then hopefully they will see this essay and be (divinely?) compelled to answer.

My suspicion is that Christian Mingle is probably not for whoring, but one can never be too sure.

Since I am now unemployed as of this past Friday (internship ended!) I am tempted to use some of my free time to set up a Christian Mingle account and go undercover, as it were, to answer some of these questions.

But my Dad reads this and I think he’d be pretty pissed if he found out that I was messing around with this type of research instead of trying to get, you know, reemployed. Jen also may not approve.

Another day…

 

Blog: Thoughts on the RNC

[NOTE: This is a blog, not an essay. The difference between the two is that essays are planned at length, dictated, given to Eva Baker for transcription, and then finally re-edited and mailed out to all his friends and regular readers in hard-copy.  This, conversely is just some thoughts on yesterday’s Republican National Convention that Pop happened to record in an email to me. Judy had mentioned to me previously that Pop was thinking about writing a small commentary on the RNC, and I encouraged him to do so and mentioned that Jen had specifically inquired about his thoughts on said convention. He winds up addressing the whole thing as a response to her.]

 

Hey Kevin,

This is a response to Jen whom I hope remembers me.1  First of all, I wish to inquire whether they have the same God in upstate New York as we have here in Northern NJ.  It seems to me that this is an important consideration because the convention is taking place during Hurricane Isaac.  It is clear as a bell to me that God is angry as hell about what the Republicans are up to.

So the first point is to try to find out what the republicans have done that pisses off God sufficiently that would cause him to bring a hurricane back to the gulf coast.

Now on to some thoughts about the request from Jen.  On Tuesday I had a long day and knowing what conventions are like, for the first time in several months, I headed for bed in prime time.2  This is to say that I did not witness the proceedings at Tampa because I was basically asleep.  It is clear to me that the reviews of the subsequent day with all of their flashbacks to the highlights of the convention are quite adequate.  So I will give you some thoughts off the top of my head, which as you may recall is very wavy.

In the first place, I have been watching conventions since 1928 when Herbert Hoover ran against Al Smith.  At that time, the big problem was that Al Smith was a Catholic.  My parents were fundamentalist Christians who thought that Catholicism was the very pit of evil.  In private dealings, it must be observed that some people would say very quietly to their cohorts that “You know he’s a Catholic, don’t you?”  I was six years old at that time but I remember the events quite vividly.

Now with respect to yesterday’s proceedings, it is my belief that Mrs. Romney’s speech was over-rehearsed.  So I join in Hana Davis’ estimation of her speech as “corny.”  Hana’s native language is Czech and German and she learned her English in Great Britain.  Hana is 92 years old and my evaluation is that you don’t mess with Hana Davis.  She said it was corny but when I heard the clips played today, I would say that Hana’s description of Mrs. Romney was more than generous.  In other words, Mrs. Romney delivered a over-rehearsed speech.  There was absolutely no spontaneity in her remarks.

The other big speech was Chris Christie, who had no New Jersey miracle to brag about.  Christie was his usual bullying self and I believe even his Republican audience sensed that quality to Christie’s remarks.

That is my reaction to yesterday’s proceedings.  Admittedly I have relied as I intended to on news clips and the testimony of Hana Davis.  They have always been reliable indicators of what is going on.

Again, I believe that God has injected himself into Republican politics with his hurricane.  In point of fact, I believe that this event is what we should take away from the Republican convention.  In fact, all those faithful Republicans on the Gulf Coast are gurgling with hurricane overflow and can’t watch the convention because God turned off the electricity too.

Pop

PS:  Check out today’s editorial in the New York Times.  Judy will send it if you cannot get it.3

August 29, 2012

Blog #1

~~~~

1. Perhaps Pop assumes that I only date people who have horrible memories?  This may or may not be an unreasonable assumption. Still, they met less than a month ago. She has certainly not forgotten him, but if she had it would count as particularly impressive that she asked to hear his thoughts on the RNC, I feel.

2. I feel that Pop is taking a page out of the Pope’s book, here.

3. I think he means this one, but I am not positive.