Bring Me That Horizon

Welcome to jennyweber dot com


Home of Jenny the Pirate



This will go better if you

check your expectations at the door.


We're not big on logic

but there's no shortage of irony.


 Nice is different than good.


Oh and ...

I flunked charm school.

So what.

Can't write anything.

= Jennifer =

Causing considerable consternation
to many fine folk since 1957

Pepper and me ... Seattle 1962



Belay That!

This blog does not contain and its author will not condone profanity, crude language, or verbal abuse. Commenters, you are welcome to speak your mind but do not cuss or I will delete either the word or your entire comment, depending on my mood. Continued use of bad words or inappropriate sentiments will result in the offending individual being banned, after which they'll be obliged to walk the plank. Thankee for your understanding and compliance.

= Jenny the Pirate =

Hoist The Colors


I am a Blue Star Mother




Insist on yourself; never imitate.

Your own gift you can present

every moment

with the cumulative force

of a whole life’s cultivation;

but of the adopted talent of another

you have only an extemporaneous

half possession.

That which each can do best,

none but his Maker can teach him.

= Ralph Waldo Emerson =



The Black Velvet Coat

In The Market, As It Were






Contributor to

American Cemetery

published by Kates-Boylston

A Pistol With One Shot

Ecstatically shooting everything in sight using my beloved Nikon D3100 with AF-S DX Nikkor 18-55mm 1:3.5-5.6G VR kit lens and AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 G prime lens.

Also capturing outrageous beauty left and right with my Nikon D7000 blissfully married to my Nikkor 85mm f/1.4D AF prime glass. Don't be jeal.

And then there was the Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-200mm f:3.5-5.6G ED VR II zoom. We're done here.

Dying Is A Day Worth Living For

I am a taphophile

Word. Photo Jennifer Weber 2010

Great things are happening at

Find A Grave

If you don't believe me, click the pics.


Dying is a wild night

and a new road.

Emily Dickinson



When I am gone

Please remember me

 As a heartfelt laugh,

 As a tenderness.

 Hold fast to the image of me

When my soul was on fire,

The light of love shining

Through my eyes.

Remember me when I was singing

And seemed to know my way.

Remember always

When we were together

And time stood still.

Remember most not what I did,

Or who I was;

Oh please remember me

For what I always desired to be:

A smile on the face of God.

David Robert Brooks



 Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.


Keep To The Code








You Want To Find This
The Promise Of Redemption

Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not;

But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.

But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:

In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake.

For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;

Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;

Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.

For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.

So then death worketh in us, but life in you.

We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I BELIEVED, AND THEREFORE HAVE I SPOKEN; we also believe, and therefore speak;

Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you.

For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.

For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.

For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;

While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

II Corinthians 4

Freedom is a fragile thing and is never more than one generation away from extinction. It is not ours by inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, for it comes only once to a people. Those who have known freedom and then lost it, have never known it again.

~ Ronald Reagan

Photo Jennifer Weber 2010

Not Without My Effects

My Compass Works Fine

The Courage Of Our Hearts




Daft Like Jack

 "I can name fingers and point names ..."

And We'll Sing It All The Time
  • Elements Series: Fire
    Elements Series: Fire
    by Peter Kater
  • Danny Wright Healer of Hearts
    Danny Wright Healer of Hearts
    by Danny Wright
  • Grace
    Old World Records
  • The Hymns Collection (2 Disc Set)
    The Hymns Collection (2 Disc Set)
    Stone Angel Music, Inc.
  • Always Near - A Romantic Collection
    Always Near - A Romantic Collection
    Real Music
  • Copia
    Temporary Residence Ltd.
  • The Poet: Romances for Cello
    The Poet: Romances for Cello
    Spring Hill Music
  • Nightfall
    Narada Productions, Inc.
  • Rachmaninoff plays Rachmaninoff
    Rachmaninoff plays Rachmaninoff
  • The Pity Party: A Mean-Spirited Diatribe Against Liberal Compassion
    The Pity Party: A Mean-Spirited Diatribe Against Liberal Compassion
    by William Voegeli
  • The Art of Memoir
    The Art of Memoir
    by Mary Karr
  • The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems
    The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems
    by Emily Dickinson
  • Among The Dead: My Years in The Port Mortuary
    Among The Dead: My Years in The Port Mortuary
    by John W. Harper
  • On Writing Well, 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction
    On Writing Well, 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction
    by William Zinsser
  • Green Hell: How Environmentalists Plan to Control Your Life and What You Can Do to Stop Them
    Green Hell: How Environmentalists Plan to Control Your Life and What You Can Do to Stop Them
    by Steven Milloy
  • The Amateur
    The Amateur
    by Edward Klein
  • Hating Jesus: The American Left's War on Christianity
    Hating Jesus: The American Left's War on Christianity
    by Matt Barber, Paul Hair
  • In Praise of Stay-at-Home Moms
    In Praise of Stay-at-Home Moms
    by Dr. Laura Schlessinger
  • Where Are They Buried (Revised and Updated): How Did They Die? Fitting Ends and Final Resting Places of the Famous, Infamous, and Noteworthy
    Where Are They Buried (Revised and Updated): How Did They Die? Fitting Ends and Final Resting Places of the Famous, Infamous, and Noteworthy
    by Tod Benoit
  • Bird Brains: The Intelligence of Crows, Ravens, Magpies, and Jays
    Bird Brains: The Intelligence of Crows, Ravens, Magpies, and Jays
    by Candace Savage
  • Gifts of the Crow: How Perception, Emotion, and Thought Allow Smart Birds to Behave Like Humans
    Gifts of the Crow: How Perception, Emotion, and Thought Allow Smart Birds to Behave Like Humans
    by John Marzluff Ph.D., Tony Angell
  • Righteous Indignation: Excuse Me While I Save the World!
    Righteous Indignation: Excuse Me While I Save the World!
    by Andrew Breitbart
  • 11 Principles of a Reagan Conservative
    11 Principles of a Reagan Conservative
    by Paul Kengor
  • Mind of the Raven: Investigations and Adventures with Wolf-Birds
    Mind of the Raven: Investigations and Adventures with Wolf-Birds
    by Bernd Heinrich
  • Talking Heads: The Vent Haven Portraits
    Talking Heads: The Vent Haven Portraits
    by Matthew Rolston
  • Mortuary Confidential: Undertakers Spill the Dirt
    Mortuary Confidential: Undertakers Spill the Dirt
    by Todd Harra, Ken McKenzie
  • America's Steadfast Dream
    America's Steadfast Dream
    by E. Merrill Root
  • Good Dog, Carl : A Classic Board Book
    Good Dog, Carl : A Classic Board Book
    by Alexandra Day
  • Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation
    Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation
    by Lynne Truss
  • The American Way of Death Revisited
    The American Way of Death Revisited
    by Jessica Mitford
  • In Six Days : Why Fifty Scientists Choose to Believe in Creation
    In Six Days : Why Fifty Scientists Choose to Believe in Creation
    Master Books
  • Architects of Ruin: How big government liberals wrecked the global economy---and how they will do it again if no one stops them
    Architects of Ruin: How big government liberals wrecked the global economy---and how they will do it again if no one stops them
    by Peter Schweizer
  • Grave Influence: 21 Radicals and Their Worldviews That Rule America From the Grave
    Grave Influence: 21 Radicals and Their Worldviews That Rule America From the Grave
    by Brannon Howse
  • Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadow: The Tragic Courtship and Marriage of Paul Laurence Dunbar and Alice Ruth Moore
    Lyrics of Sunshine and Shadow: The Tragic Courtship and Marriage of Paul Laurence Dunbar and Alice Ruth Moore
    by Eleanor Alexander
Easy On The Goods
  • Waiting for
    Waiting for "Superman"
    starring Geoffrey Canada, Michelle Rhee
  • The Catered Affair (Remastered)
    The Catered Affair (Remastered)
    starring Bette Davis, Ernest Borgnine, Debbie Reynolds, Barry Fitzgerald, Rod Taylor
  • Bernie
    starring Jack Black, Shirley MacLaine, Matthew McConaughey
  • Remember the Night
    Remember the Night
    starring Barbara Stanwyck, Fred MacMurray, Beulah Bondi, Elizabeth Patterson, Sterling Holloway
  • The Ox-Bow Incident
    The Ox-Bow Incident
    starring Henry Fonda, Dana Andrews, Mary Beth Hughes, Anthony Quinn, William Eythe
  • The Bad Seed
    The Bad Seed
    starring Nancy Kelly, Patty McCormack, Henry Jones, Eileen Heckart, Evelyn Varden
  • Shadow of a Doubt
    Shadow of a Doubt
    starring Teresa Wright, Joseph Cotten, Macdonald Carey, Patricia Collinge, Henry Travers
  • The More The Merrier
    The More The Merrier
    starring Jean Arthur, Joel McCrea, Charles Coburn, Bruce Bennett, Ann Savage
  • Act of Valor
    Act of Valor
    starring Alex Veadov, Roselyn Sanchez, Nestor Serrano
  • Deep Water
    Deep Water
    starring Tilda Swinton, Donald Crowhurst, Jean Badin, Clare Crowhurst, Simon Crowhurst
  • Sunset Boulevard
    Sunset Boulevard
    starring William Holden, Gloria Swanson, Erich Von Stroheim, Nancy Olson, Fred Clark
  • Penny Serenade
    Penny Serenade
    starring Cary Grant, Irene Dunne, Edgar Buchanan, Beulah Bondi
  • Double Indemnity
    Double Indemnity
    starring Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck, Edward G. Robinson, Porter Hall, Jean Heather
  • Ayn Rand and the Prophecy of Atlas Shrugged
    Ayn Rand and the Prophecy of Atlas Shrugged
    starring Gary Anthony Williams
  • Fat Sick & Nearly Dead
    Fat Sick & Nearly Dead
    Passion River
  • It Happened One Night (Remastered Black & White)
    It Happened One Night (Remastered Black & White)
    starring Clark Gable, Claudette Colbert
  • Stella Dallas
    Stella Dallas
    starring Barbara Stanwyck, John Boles, Anne Shirley, Barbara O'Neil, Alan Hale
  • The Iron Lady
    The Iron Lady
    starring Meryl Streep, Jim Broadbent, Harry Lloyd, Anthony Head, Alexandra Roach
  • Wallace & Gromit: The Complete Collection (4 Disc Set)
    Wallace & Gromit: The Complete Collection (4 Disc Set)
    starring Peter Sallis, Anne Reid, Sally Lindsay, Melissa Collier, Sarah Laborde
  • The Red Balloon (Released by Janus Films, in association with the Criterion Collection)
    The Red Balloon (Released by Janus Films, in association with the Criterion Collection)
    starring Red Balloon
  • Stalag 17 (Special Collector's Edition)
    Stalag 17 (Special Collector's Edition)
    starring William Holden, Don Taylor, Otto Preminger, Robert Strauss, Harvey Lembeck
  • The Major and the Minor (Universal Cinema Classics)
    The Major and the Minor (Universal Cinema Classics)
    starring Ginger Rogers, Ray Milland
  • My Dog Skip
    My Dog Skip
    starring Frankie Muniz, Diane Lane, Luke Wilson, Kevin Bacon
  • Sabrina
    starring Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn, William Holden, Walter Hampden, John Williams
  • The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer
    The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer
    starring Cary Grant, Myrna Loy, Shirley Temple, Rudy Vallee, Ray Collins
  • Pirates of the Caribbean - The Curse of the Black Pearl (Two-Disc Collector's Edition)
    Pirates of the Caribbean - The Curse of the Black Pearl (Two-Disc Collector's Edition)
    starring Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightley, Jack Davenport
  • Now, Voyager (Keepcase)
    Now, Voyager (Keepcase)
    starring Bette Davis, Paul Henreid, Claude Rains, Gladys Cooper, John Loder
  • The Trip To Bountiful
    The Trip To Bountiful
  • Hold Back the Dawn [DVD] Charles Boyer; Olivia de Havilland; Paulette Goddard
    Hold Back the Dawn [DVD] Charles Boyer; Olivia de Havilland; Paulette Goddard
That Dog Is Never Going To Move



Columbia's Finest Chihuahua

Simple. Easy To Remember.

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Wake me when it's over

A week ago Sunday, while at church, I learned through the grapevine that another hurricane was headed our way.


He was due to arrive on the following Wednesday. Or so went the scuttlebutt.

What in the world? I marveled to TG on the way home. 

Unlike when Hurricane Florence was still thousands of nautical miles away, we hadn't been told two weeks out that we needed to plan for the end of the world.

And you know how that turned out. We had a rainy day. And not even particularly rainy, by South Carolina standards.

(Again: I understand that many suffered catastrophic effects of Hurricane Florence. Again: they have my prayers.)

But here we were with a tropical storm a mere three days away, and no extra bread in the house.

Fast forward to Thursday -- almost a week ago now -- when Hurricane Michael did arrive, in the form of a much-downgraded tropical storm.

The folks in the panhandle of Florida had already experienced devastating losses when Michael loomed on our horizon.

For reasons I'll never understand, this storm was not hyped to us in the same way at all. Even though it turned out to be worse.

As in, our sun room took on water in two corners. The rain came down pretty hard for many hours during the wee hours of last Thursday morning.

Our pool was nearly full to the brim when TG and I woke in still-gray, grainy light to check that all hatches were still battened down.

That's when I discovered the water on my new sun room floor and ran for the stack of pool towels. TG stood by to grab the little Shop-Vac and suck up the puddles.

But not long after, as I drank my coffee and sat watch, the rain subsided. The towels in the corners, having deftly absorbed the opportunistic rainwater, were all that was needed.

By one o'clock that day, the sun was out and puffy white clouds scudded across an azure blue sky.

By three o'clock that day, the pool towels had been washed, dried, folded, and re-stacked in the cabinet where they will ride out the winter.

Crisis averted.

And then it got hot again -- we've been in the high 80s for days now, with killing humidity.

I think Indian summer is about to be in the rear-view too, however. And the sooner, the better.

Rizzo does not like storms; they appear to traumatize his wee canine soul.

When I got up on the day Michael swanned through Columbia, as the rain lashed the windows and seeped in from the corners of the sun room, Riz cowered in the recliner on his blankets, clutching his Bullibone.

The picture above isn't from that day; I took it this past Monday, because as he sat beside me snoozing, I noticed that he'd dragged his blue-rings chew toy up with him and had his paw shoved through one of the rings.

His Bullibone was nearby too. Just in case.

The blue-ring chew toy is the one I bought for him at Pet Supplies Plus on the day we rescued him, in January of 2017. He also has a small black tire with a rope through it, but that came later, and the blue rings are his favorite.

Besides the Bullibone, which is his absolute favorite.

What would I do without the Riz-man?

I'd spend a significant amount of time being sad and lonely, which is its own kind of storm.

And that is all for now.


Happy Wednesday


Extra credit

Looking over my recent photos of Chicago's historic Graceland Cemetery, I was reminded of having become entranced by a row of mausoleums.

Mausies intrigue me; functioning as little houses, they provide dedicated above-ground spaces for those interred within.

(The occupants are past caring, but it's a nice gesture.)

And I love it when they're lined up like soldiers, serious and straight, stoic throughout the ages, all but impervious to the weather and their surroundings.

Ninety-five times out of a hundred, the tiny buildings are locked up tight. I can never decide whether the locks are intended to keep the dead ones in or the living ones out.

Not that I want in.

Be that as it may, looking at my pictures reminded me of a story I meant to tell you and had temporarily forgotten to share.

So here goes.

Technically it's Audrey's story to tell but she told it to me and she doesn't have a blog so I gladly stand in the gap for you, my readers.

I may have one or two of the finer details wrong but in the end it won't matter.

You'll see.

The story involves something that happened to Audrey and Dagny last spring, shortly after they moved into their new house.

They'd gone outdoors so that Dagny could work off excess energy by riding her new scooter.

If Audrey were telling the tale, she'd reveal exactly how they got locked out.

I wasn't there and I can't remember what she told me, but the result is the same: Audrey realized at some point that she had locked her door and left her keys inside.

I'm pretty sure she had her phone with her but it wouldn't have done her much good to call her dad or me, or Andrew or Erica.

We didn't have keys to her house.

Thinking that she may be able to work her way in with a credit card -- it was worth a shot -- Audrey went to a neighbor and borrowed one. 

(Or at least, a plastic card just like a credit card. I mean, would you give a new neighbor one of your credit cards if they materialized at your door and asked for it?)

(Maybe I'm the suspicious type, but I wouldn't.)

At any rate, Audrey returned to her domicile and slid the borrowed plastic card into the space between the lock and the jamb, in an attempt to coax the door open.

But the more she tried, the more she realized that she was well and truly locked out. And that no card -- credit or otherwise -- was going to change it.

There were no windows to slide open either. The place was like a fortress.

Finally, knowing the hit her wallet was about to take but having no choice, Audrey used her phone to call a locksmith.

I wasn't there and I don't know what locksmiths normally do to get into houses when folks have locked themselves out. I assume they have tools that are made for that purpose.

But whatever the locksmith Audrey summoned possessed in the way of tools, and whatever tried-and-true tricks he knew, he too was unsuccessful.

As in, no matter what professional lock-breaching method he employed, he could not get Audrey's front door to budge.

At a loss, he asked if he could use the plastic card in her hand -- the borrowed plastic card she had not yet returned to her neighbor.

And so it was that, using the neighbor's plastic, the locksmith got Audrey's door open while she and Dagny watched and waited.

The locksmith required full payment of his fee for getting them back inside their house using the neighbor's plastic card.

I realize he'd been obliged to drop what he was doing and drive over there to help my daughter, who was in a considerable pickle, and for that he deserved payment, because it's his job.

But the entire amount? For getting in not with the tools he's trained to use, but with a plastic card she'd borrowed from the neighbor?

Yes. What do you think about that?

Here's what I think: I hope that for her money, Audrey requested a quick tutorial on how to open one's door with a credit card.

And then -- for extra credit -- I hope she replaces her current lock with one that cannot be opened with a plastic card.

And that is all for now.


Happy Tuesday


Rain. No reign.

Our beloved Chicago Cubs' 2018 season ended with a whimper on Tuesday night.

Will I watch the World Series anyway?

I don't know. It remains to be seen.

When TG and I were at Wrigley Field in Chicago on August 28th to see the Cubs host the New York Mets, everybody's hopes were still high.

On that evening as we arrived at the Friendly Confines, having ridden the sardine train "L" to get there from our hotel, dark clouds were rolling in across Chicago.

They threatened to rain out all or at least part of the game.

But we were ninety minutes early; the radar showed a storm that appeared to be moving quickly.

So it was that, having entered the park and found our excellent seats, as we were absorbing the vibes of Cubbyland and enjoying the outdoors -- hot and muggy though it certainly was -- the grounds crew began covering the field.

Noooooooo ...

Wrigley staff, and messages posted on the huge LED scoreboards, told fans to run for cover if they weren't already under roof.

We weren't; after sitting beneath an overhang last year, with limited visibility, TG and I said "never again" and this year splashed out for seats much closer to the action.

But as the storm showed its teeth, we were shooed higher, and like mountain goats everyone clambered up into the still-empty seats back in the shadows.

While passing the time there we met a young lady who had flown from her home in Texas all the way to Chicago, just for the game. She planned to spend the night and fly back home the next day.

A Cub fan since childhood, she asked if I'd get some pictures of her against the backdrop of one of the most beautiful fields in all of baseball.

Which of course I did, and they were cute. She was so thrilled to be there.

The storms exited the area by game time, moving eastward to darken the skies over Lake Michigan, and the first pitch was thrown out exactly on schedule.

The game wasn't as exciting as some I've seen on TV. In fact, at the end of nine innings it was tied: Cubs one,  Mets one.

The tenth inning was set to begin when the heavens opened again, with rain so torrential that it was obvious the game wouldn't be concluded that night.

It was ten o'clock. TG and I moved higher again -- eighty percent of those in attendance had left -- and waited for an hour with the other stragglers. Just in case.

At eleven, we were again shooed -- this time, out onto the street. Like, bye.

Naturally, we wondered if our tickets would get us into Wrigley the next day to see the game played to its finish (there was a day game scheduled; it would make sense if they wrapped up the rained-out game before starting the new one).

But, no. Huh-uh. I mean, they did finish the rained-out game before starting the next one. But we weren't invited. Not without a credit card number.

The Cubs organization let it be known the next morning that the only way you were getting in to see the end of the night game, was if you had a ticket for the day game to follow.

TG and I were headed over toward Wrigley anyway, though, because about a half-mile north of the ballpark is a massive historic cemetery: Graceland.

I'd wanted to visit there for some time, and finally the day had arrived. In another post, I'll show you the things we saw.

Outside Wrigley Field, however, is a great big screen, and you don't have to buy a ticket in order to stand on the street and watch games.

So we made our way back to Clark and Addison, and stood on the sidewalk in a much cooler, gray and misting day, to watch as the Cubs finished what they'd started, defeating the Mets two to one.

This past Tuesday night, the score was again two to one.

Only this time, it was Colorado Rockies two, Cubs one.

Which meant, it's all over but the crying. For us, anyway.

That's baseball.

And that is all for now.


Happy Thursday


The pirate weighs in

I don't know whether he is lying or she is telling the truth, or the other way around.

That's because it's impossible to tell.

What she says happened, if it happened at all, happened thirty-six years ago.

She thinks. Because she can't really remember when it is alleged to have happened.

As well, she can't remember where she really was or whom she was really with.

She told no one. Not her parents, not her best friend, not the homeowner, not her fellow partygoers, not the police, not even the dog catcher.

This is all we know: At the opportune moment, this woman's head popped up and she came forward full of accusations involving a nominee for the highest court in the land.

(President Donald Trump will seat at least one more Supreme Court justice -- maybe two, and perhaps even three -- during his two terms in office. Elections have consequences. Deal with it).

Never mind that if it happened at all, it took place at the dawn of the Reagan administration.

And that the nominee in question has been on the Federal bench for twelve years and has been vetted by the FBI not one, not two, not three, but six times.

Senator Flake says Brett Kavanaugh was "too angry" during his "interview" on Friday. 

Flake was subsequently accosted at the door of an elevator by two bellowing, haranguing feminazi harpies who, he contends, didn't do a thing to change his mind about moving for a swift vote on Mr. Kavanaugh.

Mr. Flake is flakier than his name would suggest if he denies having been intimidated by screeching, apoplectic operatives of the Center for Popular Democracy, which is heavily funded by George Soros.

It's ironic that they caught him in an elevator, because that crowd aren't interested in elevating anything. The gutter is too lofty for them. They're sewer dwellers.

If you're interested in that event and the players, read this article by John Fund of the New York Post.

And I have a question for Senator Flake: If a female whose acquaintance you barely -- if at all -- remember from your callow youth were to appear out of nowhere and accuse you of a crime you supposedly committed thirty-six years ago while in a fit of randy drunkenness, egged on by your best friend, wouldn't you be mad?

Especially if she claimed to be one hundred percent sure you did it but you were equally sure that you didn't?

I'm pretty positive that your head would explode with anger and frustration, and, under intense scrutiny witnessed by the entire world, you'd come off just as agitated and angst-filled as Brett Kavanaugh did.

Since everyone is full of questions, here are mine for the female who started the whole thing:

If you really feared that Brett Kavanaugh might inadvertently kill you during the assault that may or may not have taken place somewhere, at some time, in the year nineteen-eighy-something, surely you'd have told someone -- if only to save another young woman from suffering the same fate, or worse.

Ladies, a tip: If you don't want to be sexually assaulted, one way to avoid it is to steer clear of attending drunken parties with the male of the species.

What; too simple? Victim shaming? No fun? Well, that's too bad. It's the truth. Where you go, and with whom, often determines what the outcome will be for you.

I'll go ahead and say it: Women and girls who frequent parties where there will be men, boys, and booze, know ahead of time full well what is likely to happen. The fact of the matter is that they want to play with fire but they don't want to get burned.

And by the way, if they get mauled in a way that they didn't count on, that situation bears no resemblance whatsoever to an innocent girl being molested by a boy or a man in the course of her daily life when she is doing nothing wrong and has done nothing to invite the prurient attention.

It's not the same thing at all.

So if you want him to take responsibility for his actions, then first take responsibility for your own.

Another question for the California come-lately with the convenient story:

If you're telling the truth, why would you have to change your hair from a hot mess that hasn't seen a hairbrush in years, and a complexion that has no relationship, however fleeting, with moisturizer, much less cosmetics -- to a cut-and-color, sleek blowout, slightly coquettish style that falls coyly over the trendy new Warby Parkers from behind which peer your misty earnest expertly-made-up eyes, just to tell your (extremely short) story to Congress?

Why didn't you just show up as yourself, looking and acting as you do in everyday life when the cameras aren't rolling? What's that? It wouldn't have flown so well, because you're a knee-jerk lefty lib whose appearance regularly scares small children?

I get it.

If you're telling the truth -- and if it's not a legal proceeding, as you were repeatedly advised by whiny Kamala Harris and lecture-prone Cory Booker, who took turns calling you heroic and a patriot -- why must you be flanked by lawyers, working pro bono?

Are they there to remember stuff for you? What is there to remember? The alleged incident took place thirty-six years ago and occupied maybe -- by your own account -- all of five minutes.

If you're telling the truth, why do you have to use a put-on babe-in-the-woods voice overlaid with generous helpings of Kardashian-caliber vocal fry?

It's fake news; that's why.

But even if I got all of the above dead wrong? Here's the only thing that matters:

Not one single allegation that has been proffered can be proven. Or disproven. Too many years have gone by.

So it's time to recognize that what's going on in Washington is nothing more than a rabid attack by the hard left designed to stop the confirmation of a conservative SCOTUS justice whose opinions on that bench could set their agenda back by fifty years.

Call a time of death for this shameful circus, and move on.

And that is all for now.


Happy Monday


A past that lasts

When TG and I took Audrey and Dagny to the Georgia Aquarium last June for Dagny's fourth birthday -- that was the same trip where we visited the grave of JonBenét Ramsey -- we were less than a week away from our thirty-ninth wedding anniversary.

Since my family lived for several years in the Atlanta area in the '60s and '70s, as we drove toward our hotel I began to notice Interstate signs bearing the names of roads that were familiar to me.

We often visit Atlanta; most recently we'd been there last September, a few days after Andrew and Brittany became engaged, to take in a Braves game at SunTrust Park.

And in November, it will be two years since Erica and I spent the weekend in Atlanta, and visited with old friends. (That was a few days before Erica and Chad -- now Mr. and Mrs. Porter -- started dating.)

In fact, on that trip, on an insanely sunny, too-hot-to-be-November afternoon, I took Erica to see the church where TG and I were married on June 16, 1979.

I hadn't been back there since 1987, when I flew alone from our home in the Chicagoland area to attend a church service and a dinner-on-the-grounds reunion of folks from "back in the day."

Naturally, as Erica and I drove toward the former Forrest Hills Baptist Church in Decatur, I wasn't sure what to expect as far as how the church property, which loomed so large to me both as a teen and a young adult (in my early childhood I was subjected to no church influence whatsoever), would look after thirty years.

I knew that the church building -- built around 1970 under the leadership of the late Curtis W. Hutson, the pastor who married TG and me -- and grounds had been sold to another congregation in the early '90s.

One might be justified in expecting that any manner and number of changes would have been made in the intervening years.

And so I was more than taken aback when Erica and I drove onto the property in November of 2016 to find that, with the exception of glass front doors leading into the sanctuary instead of the solid white ones that I remembered, the exterior of the building had not changed.

At all.

Ditto for the grounds, which are virtually unchanged since the first time I saw them, when I was fifteen years old.

On that occasion, a kind caretaker of the property noticed that we had parked and were looking around, and we told him why we were there. He offered to take us inside, where things had undergone considerable cosmetic alteration.

The sanctuary is now a different color scheme, and the platform has been built out to be larger than before. The aforesaid glass doors replaced solid ones leading in and out of both the vestibule and the building itself.

Other than that, I gazed in a quiet fit of sentimentality at the place where TG and I had stood when we took our vows thirty-seven years before. 

Fast-forward seventeen months to early June of 2018, when at my urging TG steered our car again to the church where we were married.

TG hadn't seen the place since our wedding day; Audrey had never seen it at all and of course, little Dagny was a newcomer too.

I took pictures of the classic fan-shaped church architecture, noting the right side of the building as you're looking at it, where in my wedding gown and carrying a large bouquet of gardenias, I made my way around on the sidewalk with my bridesmaids, so that my groom wouldn't see me until I walked down the aisle.

Cars going by on the road fifty yards away slowed and a few honked; everyone loves a June bride.

On one's wedding day I daresay no one pictures one's children and grandchildren standing in the same place, nearly forty years in the future.

On this day there was no one with keys available to let us look around inside.

So I took pictures of TG looking up at the door of the fellowship hall where we held both our rehearsal dinner and, the next day, our distinctly Southern reception of tiny sandwiches and assorted finger foods, served with punch and, of course, wedding cake.

TG walked on the breezeway where we came out into a warm June afternoon, holding hands, having changed into regular clothes, TG holding his rented tux in a plastic suit bag, just before the remaining revelers pummeled us with rice and we boarded TG's 1974 Toyota Celica for the trip to Charleston, South Carolina, for our honeymoon.

Many of the people I loved in that place, at that time, are gone. People who made a profound difference in my life. So there was a poignant, wistful part of the experience too. As much as bricks and mortar can be a part of someone, that church is a part of me.

They say you can't go back. And yet we did, and it was special, and I am glad.

And that is all for now.


Happy Thursday


Sweet summertime, goodbye

Now that summer has melted into fall, we're left with memories of Things We Managed To Accomplish While It Was Sweltering Outside.

This year's TWMTAWIWSO include taking my two middle grandchildren to the store for school supplies.

Allissa and Andrew are attending a private faith-based school for the first time this year; up until now, they have been home schooled.

Our daughter -- their mother -- took home schooling very seriously. Everyone was up and dressed, breakfast done, each morning by the time Melanie left for her special-needs class at the nearby elementary school.

They had a classroom in the lower level of their house, and each day's priority was lessons. 

As a result, the children's academic test scores are high and they were primed for traditional schooling. They are enjoying it immensely.

Melanie is home this year, with her mother carrying out her various therapies and applying the methods used to train her to be more self-sufficient.

Melly will turn fourteen in December; she's becoming a young lady and she's not shy about what she likes and doesn't like. She very much likes hanging out with her mother all day, but she knows there will be work involved, and personal responsibility.

Mel didn't get to visit us by herself during the summer; her sibs came and she will be staying with us for a few days later this year.

In addition to buying school supplies while they were here, TG and the aunties and I took the children to a new café and sweet shop that has opened up near our house.

At the Chocolate Factory and Coffee Shoppe everyone was allowed to pick out a treat. The older children chose some things to take home and share with their parents and Melanie as well.

The girls and I got coffee and we all sat around the shop's big hearth in comfy couches and chairs, and enjoyed our snack. 

I want to go back on a cool and rainy fall day, when there's a fire in the grate.

Later that day, we took the kids out to visit an elderly lady who is the mother of one of my dearest friends.

Along with our school supplies, we had bought a metric ton of construction paper, plus stickers, so that the children could make cards for the lady we were going to visit.

We also took her a potted raspberry-pink Kalanchoe, which she loved, and which I am told is thriving -- mainly because I got it quickly out of my hands before I could kill it.

A miniature donkey by the name of Moses lives on the lady's rural property, along with some chickens. The children fed Moses crackers and marshmallows until he ran for cover.

It was approximately a million degrees outside, with eight-thousand-percent humidity.

The sweet lady invited us back inside, where she gave the children refreshing popsicles.

On the way home, we visited Costco and bought even more treats to enjoy throughout the rest of the children's visit. 

The days are cooling now; summertime has turned to go.

We're grateful because while summer holds its own special charms and we love it for itself alone, autumn is just about everyone's favorite.

It's almost Ahhhhctober.

And that is all for now.


Happy Tuesday


I've bean to the crown

You know I exist to bring you not only experiences, and pictures of those experiences, but the commentary that both deserve.

And the explanations that you deserve.

But I'm pretty sure there's no need for explanation when it comes to Chicago's Crown Fountain.

The installation, completed in 2004, comprises two fifty-foot-tall glass block towers with a reflecting pool between them.

The "face" of each tower is a massive video screen, displaying the actual faces of ordinary Chicagoans (facing one another as though communicating) blinking, smiling, staring, and blowing water kisses.

The water jetting from the mouths is said to have been inspired by gargoyles -- which, I'm not sure if you know this, but if it doesn't spit water, it's not a gargoyle. It's a grotesque.

At any rate, mist and spray moisten anyone walking within twenty feet of the structures, which do, gargoyle-like, spit water from their LED video mouths.

People cavort in the reflecting pool, which is so shallow as to be more like a low place where the water collects. I didn't try it, but I doubt it's even ankle deep. I don't believe it would attract ducks.

Water sluices down the towers for much of the year. In winter, for obvious reasons, the glass block is lit from within and the water is turned off.

We wouldn't want two fifty-foot ice blocks on our hands. Gets a trifle nippy there a few hundred yards from the shores of Lake Michigan, where Millennium Park is situated.

Crown Fountain is at the edge of that newer twenty-five-acre park, all of which -- and then some -- was for decades known as Grant Park.

The fountain gets its name from the wealthy and influential Chicago family who commissioned it into existence and paid the seventeen-million-dollar freight.

Do I like it? To say that the jury is still out is likely the closest we'll come to my feelings in the matter, for a long time to come.

It may even require a second visit before a conclusion may be reached.

The source of my ambivalence is that, although the Crown Fountain was interesting to look at, it wasn't exciting. In any way. As such it failed to touch or move me. It illuminated nothing.

When I walked away, I didn't miss it. I guess we could say I found it boring.

I could go into why I think that's the case, but I'd probably offend someone.

And we wouldn't want that.

You may have seen photos of the highly reflective Cloud Gate sculpture -- known colloquially as the bean -- which sits a stone's throw from the Crown Fountain, drawing thousands of visitors each day.

Here's me taking a picture of TG standing in front of the bean. If you look closely, you can see us both. Haha.

Although I find much to be charmed by in the country, I'm a city girl by nature. As such, the urban sprawl never fails to fascinate.

Among cities I've visited, Chicago is far and away my favorite. It has the sort of energy I understand.

So if the Crown Fountain fails to impress in the way another design might have? I can forgive that.

Because next time I visit Chicago, among the familiar sights there will something else to notice, to marvel at, to wonder about, and to show you.

And that is all for now.


Happy Thursday


The skies were black

Photo Courtesy Maribeth BruinsHurricane Florence wasn't one anymore, by the time she reached us. She'd been stripped of her title.

After all the hoopla that we endured for a week preceding the event, do you know what she turned out to be?

A rainy day.

And as rainy days go, it wasn't even an exceptionally rainy one. Not even close.

We got perhaps an inch of rain.


Granted, the wind kicked up and some gusts on Saturday were scary, only because we're surrounded by tall trees and I have a phobia that one will fall on me.

Our power never faltered. 

I love rainy days so, for me, it was like a holiday. I sat in my cozy chair in the sun room, holding Rizzo (who was a trifle nervous and whined a time or two) and enjoyed the unfolding climatic (though ultimately anticlimactic) drama.

Such excitement. Be still, my heart.

It's not my intention to trivialize the experience of our neighbors to the north, in the great state of North Carolina.

We have family who live there. They had torrential rain, but since they live in the western half of the tar heel state, they didn't face catastrophic flooding as did those in the eastern half.

And those folks have our prayers.

Meanwhile my friend and blogging buddy, Mari, was on vacation in the American West and sent me this picture of a magnificent raven hanging out in Utah.

I adore ravens. Isn't he special?

Glossy black, with attitude. A commanding presence on his rock.

May we all take our stand and stare down the day, feathers shining.

And that is all for now.


Happy Monday