Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Ben Affleck and Jimmy Kimmel

Hat tip to dbk for this one. It's bleeped but I'ts still not quite work-safe. Funny as hell.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Why it takes me so long to finish a book, even though I'm a pretty fast reader

For easily the tenth time in as many minutes, my younger child comes up to me with a question: "Mommy, what are you reading?"

Frustrated, I reply, "A book that I can't actually read because I get interrupted every few seconds!"

"What's it called?"

Even thinly veiled sarcasm can be lost on a six year old.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


George Amick, on the governor's proposal and town hall meetings:

His plan will inflict financial pain on users of the state's toll roads, but Corzine has chosen to present it to the voters in person and take their questions. He has been willing to modify the details to meet reasonable criticism, including providing toll discounts for daily drivers and dropping the idea of collecting tolls on Route 440. He has displayed a dignity and a respect for his listeners that too many of the listeners aren't reciprocating. And he's doing all this barely 10 months after a catastrophic accident that left him near death on the side of the Garden State Parkway.
It's called leadership. We haven't seen a lot of it from governors and legislators in recent years.
Contrast Corzine's performance with that of his critics.
Republican legislators have decided to try to make political hay through flat-out opposition. Not one of the 49 GOP lawmakers has agreed to support the governor's program, and a group called the Republican Task Force for Fiscal Responsibility is mimicking the governor's strategy with its own series of town meetings. "We strongly, adamantly, 100 percent disagree with Gov. Corzine's toll plan, and we intend to inform the public why," the chairman, Assemblyman Michael Doherty, R-Washington Township, said at a forum in Warren County.
It takes no great political or personal courage, of course, to stand before people who don't want to pay higher tolls or taxes and tell them that they won't have to do it. Simply saying no doesn't take salesmanship.

Not that we expect any great political or personal courage from the Republicans in Our Fair State, but it might be nice if they showed some. Even a little.

Still, many Republicans are peddling the notion that spending reductions are the whole answer. For them, it would be instructive if they provided a specific list of cuts and used their open forums to defend them. Like Corzine, they should do it before audiences that aren't predisposed to be friendly. And they should do it week after week.
Let Republican legislators stand in front of an auditorium packed with state and local government workers and teachers and tell them there must be layoffs as well as modifications in their generous retirement and health-care packages. Let them inform a roomful of cops that the binding-arbitration law has driven up the pay of some public-safety workers to excessive levels and needs revision.
Let them say to audiences of suburban parents and educational professionals that school districts should be consolidated on a large scale for cost-effectiveness. Let them tell tax-averse listeners that an increase in the state's gasoline tax would be a reasonable alternative to some of the toll hikes in Corzine's plan.
All these things make sense, but could the governor's critics take the heat? Corzine has shown that he can.

It's called leadership. Unfortunately, George is right: We haven't seen a lot of it from governors and legislators in recent years. We're used to seeing pandering and and blind eyes turned to our problems.

Even if the proposal isn't the best idea for Our Fair State, at least Corzine has the guts to stand up and make his case.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

It's snowing!

Not only is it snowing, it's cold enough that it's sticking!

We've had almost no snow this year, so accumulation is truly exciting. Cool!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Some random thoughts on Saturday's Gov. meeting

A friend and I attended Gov. Corzine's Mercer County meeting on Saturday. I'm sure you read all about it by now, but if not, here are some random thoughts of mine:
  • The Gov made his case pretty well. I wish he'd explained a little more about other alternatives that he rejected and why- that might have helped.
  • A number of people had well thought out questions about the impact of the plan. Thank you for that.
  • A big concern in Mercer county was the fear that a toll hike will push more traffic onto local roads like 295, Route 1, and 130. These are very valid points and I hope they will be addressed with stricter truck regulation on smaller roads.
  • Bill Baroni was there. Rush Holt was there. The mayor of East Windsor was there. But only 12th district State Senator Jennifer Beck and Assemblycritters Cassagrande and Declan O'Scanlan got up to use the mike to ask antagonistic questions. Don't they have a different forum to talk to the Governor- say, in their respective assemblies in Trenton? Instead, they came down to Hightstown to wrest the microphone from taxpayers- for whom this forum was their best chance- just for political gain. Typical.
  • The mayor of Hightstown took the mike too, only to point out that Hightstown High School isn't East Windsor Regional High School. I would call this a similar waste of time to the politicians above, but what he illustrated is the arrogance that keeps Hightstown and East Windsor from discussing any merging of services or, dare I say it, government. I'm sure everyone saw that pretty clearly.
  • Note to the guy who kept spouting off about first ammendment rights, the one who got the police officer's badge number, the one who kept mouthing off when others tried to speak, the one who didn't bother to listen, just to shout: You're right, we have a first ammendment right to free speech. So here's my free speech: you behaved like a stupid jerk.
  • It's a shame that some people didn't come with open minds. There may be better plans than this one, 's true, but you owe it to yourself to hear fully what's currently on the table.
So, go to your county's meeting if it hasn't been held yet. It was interesting, to say the least.

Release the hounds!

The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show is on TV tonight, from 8-9 on USA and 9-11 on CNBC.

I love the dog show. I watch it every year, even though it looks exactly like same show each year. Which is the point, really- the dogs are supposed to look exactly the same.

Every year, the greyhound will not win, either. But we root for the breed still.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008


Polls are open until 8PM. The biggest FAQ for elections are listed here. If your'e not sure if you are registered, you must contact your County election office: list here.

Remember, you can't complain about the result if you didn't bother to drag yourself to your polling place. So go vote!

Monday, February 04, 2008

I wish Hillary would stop calling me!

Three times today so far. I stopped answering; maybe she'll get the hint.

Saturday, February 02, 2008


Did you already vote absentee- for John Edwards? Well, you can change it! Mercer County plans to let voters switch:

Mercer County voters who cast absentee ballots for former presidential candidates including Rudy Giuliani or John Edwards can still have their vote count.
They will have an opportunity to vote again and replace their original ballot due to a court ruling in Ocean County and a decision by Mercer County Clerk Paula Sollami-Covello.
The county will follow a state Superior Court ruling that ordered the Ocean County clerk to distribute duplicate absentee ballots to those who voted for formerly viable candidates, Sollami-Covello announced yesterday.
Those affected must apply for the second absentee ballot in person at the Mercer County Clerk's Office by Monday at 3 p.m. Before receiving the ballot, the voters must sign an affidavit saying they had already cast their absentee ballot and that their choice had withdrawn.

Bergen, Essex, Union and (of course) Ocean are allowing re-votes as well. Contact your County Clerk Monday morning if your vote falls into this category!

Bergen County Clerk's office
Essex County Clerk's office
Union County Clerk's office
Ocean County Clerk's office
Mercer County Clerk's office

Make your voice heard- VOTE!


Is anyone out there on Shelfari? It's a book website, where you post what you're reading and you can see what your friends are into now, too.

Send me a note if you are on it. It's fun.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Stand against hate

I've watched the fountain in Hightstown rise and like so many others I couldn't wait to see how it would look when done. One morning a few days ago, I walked past it only to see it covered in a tarp. I figured it was part of the construction. I didn't see the newspaper until later, and found out what had been painted on it.

I know racisim exists. I know it's out there in the world. It's a horrible feeling when it hits so close to home.

About a hundred people gathered last night in solidarity against the racist grafiti found in Hightstown and Roosevelt. Big thanks go to Sandra Johnson, Lenore Isleib and Judith Weiss for organizing a way us to show both our displeasure at these slur in these little towns, and our unity in moving forward- away from hate. It was great to see how many people crowded into the Point and into the meeting afterward. People came not just from these two towns, but from many communities, religions and walks of life.

The good feeling from this gathering erased that earlier horrible one.