Thursday, December 18, 2003

An Interesting Few Days

Decided it was time to go home to visit my father who is not doing so well lately (at 90, who is?). I'll probably be lucky to make it to 70! Of course about 30 minutes before I'm ready to leave home, the power goes out in the house and comes right back on. Unbenownst to me, it messes with one of my USB ports that my external backup Hard drive is connected to. It looks like the Hard Drive is toast, along with the USB 2.0 PCI card and mini-hub and maybe even the printer. After getting all those suppliers to ship me new parts (no questions asked either, which was surprising), I decided to unplug everything, reboot the machine and then plug everything back in. Of course, voila - everything goes back to working. Nothing like adding to post departure stress! (back on the phone cancelling all those orders)

For more fun, we decide to take the 2 cats along with us. Our one cat, Turbo, has made this trip before, but the little one Willow, who is high strung, has not. Turbo goes willingly into his cat carrier and proceeds to snooze for the next 5 hours without so much as a peep. Willow, shows her great pleasure with the whole experience, by deciding it is time to do a number #2 in her cat carrier, just 20 minutes from the house. Needless to say, that caused some excitement in the ol' car and a quick exit off the road. A few minutes of cat cleanup (good job, Janet!) and we are headed off again. 30 minutes later while paying for some food at Wendy's in the driveup lane, Willow decides that she isn't getting enough attention and does the ol' heave ho all over my camera bag sitting on the back floorboard. Another cleanup and fortunately, by now she has about exhausted herself. The next 4 hours she spends curled up in Janet's lap, heart pounding, but doing better.

As soon as we reach the motel for the night and lug the 2 varmints inside, they both make a run for under the bed and although Turbo comes out later for a look around, Willow remains firmly attached to her square of carpet under the bed and does not come out for anyone. In the morning, we have to move the bed and pry her off the carpet. Fortunately, once in the car she snoozes off for the remainder of the trip, which lasts another 5 hours.

Believe me, I was glad to end this trip!

Monday, December 15, 2003

Fascinating Insights from Saddam Interview

Bearing Questions, 4 New Iraqi Leaders Pay Hussein a Visit: "'The world is crazy,' said Mowaffak al-Rubaie, a Governing Council member in the room on Sunday after Mr. Hussein was captured near his hometown, Tikrit. 'I was in his torture chamber in 1979, and now he was sitting there, powerless in front of me without anybody stopping me from doing anything to him. Just imagine. We were arguing, and he was using very foul language.'"

Hardly seems contrite, does he? Quite an interesting short article - read it now (NY Times articles are free only for 7 days). And after you finish that one, you can check out William Safire's comments, one being "I think Saddam is still Saddam — a meretricious, malevolent megalomaniac. He knows he is going to die, either by death sentence or in jail at the hands of a rape victim's family. Why did he not use his pistol to shoot it out with his captors or to kill himself? Because he is looking forward to the mother of all genocide trials, rivaling Nuremberg's and topping those of Eichmann and Milosevic. There, in the global spotlight, he can pose as the great Arab hero saving Islam from the Bushes and the Jews."

Quote of the Day
Save the Environment -- Plant a Bush Back in Texas

Sunday, December 14, 2003

A "Christmas Present" for the Iraqi People

Saddam Captured - Iraqi News Today Wow, what a shocker this morning. Much to the woe of his supporters in the Arab world, Saddam didn't die fighting. Maybe that will tell them something about the kind of person he really was. Interesting times surely lie ahead. Hopefully, they will let his trial spin out long enough so that all the evidence is heard against him. That would be important for the Arab world to hear , especially if it is an Iraqi run trial. One must not forget that for many in Arab countries, their news can be a rather lopsided version of actual events. This will be hard to hide. Strangely, in a way, I felt sorry for the sorry ol' goat - but then I am reminded of how many millions he slaughtered for no good reason and that feeling quickly vanishes. I also had the sinking feeling that this would just put another feather in the cap of ol' GW and no doubt hasten his reelection - a foreboding thought , if there ever was one. A long slog still lies ahead - hopefully enough international pressure and criticism will keep the U.S. somewhat in line and prevent its (GW's and gang) imperialistic tendencies. It would be nice to see Iraq emerge on its own - definitely, not a certaintity despite todays events.