[sigh] Stirring the Pot, Muddying Up the Water Again…

On Tuesday, Feb 28, 23-time Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps testified before the U.S. Congressional Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations in hopes of boosting Congressional support for anti-doping operations.
This is his concluding statement:
“Now that I’m retired, I’m frequently asked if I think anyone will win more medals than me in my lifetime. My answer to that question is I hope so. I’d like to think that there’s some boy or girl somewhere now, with an even bigger dream, and even stronger drive to work even harder than I did to do something that’s never been done before. But for that to happen, he must believe he or she will get a fair opportunity to compete. If we allow our confidence in fair play to erode, we will undermine the power of sport, and the goals and dreams of future generations. The time to act is now. We must do what is necessary to ensure the system is fair and reliable, so we can all believe in it.” (added emphasis mine)
“IF WE ALLOW OUR CONFIDENCE IN FAIR PLAY TO ERODE, WE WILL UNDERMINE THE POWER OF SPORT…”
There’s a controversy in Texas HS sports recently about a born-female wrestler who wishes to be a transgendered (new word?) boy. S/he is taking doctor-prescribed testosterone (a known PED) to help him/her become a boy but isn’t allowed to wrestle boys (state association rules), so s/he wrestles girls who aren’t taking testosterone. IMO, this is an example of the erosion of “confidence in fair play.” S/he is in a difficult spot, but the chosen course of action followed has put a lot of other non-testosteroned girl wrestlers in a difficult spot (several forfeited their matches with him/her by their own choice, some by their coach’s choice), and has a lot of other people wondering just what constitutes “fair” these days. Should personal pursuit of happiness (a choice) impose itself on another’s sense of what is fair in sport? And if s/he considers herself a “boy”, does s/he not see how others see his/her decision to continue in the girls competition as selfishness, or lack of fairness? (S/he won the State Championship, btw)
I got roundly lectured by a couple of friends because I earlier posited on Facebook that I thought it was unfair to the other girls in the state championship series. I understand their feelings, I understand that s/he was following the rules of the state association, but even it was “by the rules”, was it FAIR? And my point is still: When should one’s personal pursuit of liberty or happiness be considerate of what others feel is fair to THEM? Tough call. I still feel it is unfair, even if it is allowed by the rules. What was the hard decision in Star Trek II? “The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.” Or do they? I guess I’d be opening myself up to another broadside if I posted this on Facebook (my first mistake, haha!), but since I have this blog…
At the end of this post is a sympathetic but rather impartial look at the situation from the student’s point of view.  I feel it is only FAIR that I include it here.  Mom said to always try to be nice, but she didn’t say I had to suppress my thoughts and feelings.  “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” That’s what –her– mom told –her-.  And why we heard it from her in our generation.  I think it’s nice that this kid has had the drive to excel, and has had the support of family and friends.  I congratulate the conferring of the State title.  And I also sympathize with those who forfeited a match with him/her because they thought it wasn’t fair to compete with the same gender but with someone who was allowed to compete with testosterone-enhanced performance.  Sorry, that’s what it was, regardless of how strenuously s/he trained and competed.  Testosterone is STILL a PED (performance enhancing drug).
This isn’t an attack on the wrestler in question, but an inquiry into what the future will hold in this area to return to a full sense of FAIR.  Just not very sure of where the politicians will take us, because it is THEM who will decide.  That’s what is scary.

Oh, The Hypocrisy! Lamentations, Part Deux

Just two relatively short items for this fleeting re-connection with the blog:

HYPOCRISY DEPARTMENT, item #1

Kellyanne Conway has drawn the ire of the Left for –daring– to place her knees on one of two facing sofas (or is it a couch?  A Davenport?) in the Oval Office.  The first picture shown below is another beautiful example of cherry-picking available images to highlight something completely out of context to make one’s point (the Reds and the Blues are equally guilty of these transgressions), but the hypocrisy of The Left just smells so much worse.

conway-couch-1

 

But WHY was she doing that, is she just uncouth, overtly over-casual, ashamed of her shoes or a bad pedi?  No, turns out she was going to take a phone photo and needed an angle she could only get from the couch, which she would NOT dirty by wearing shoes or taking some squatting (very unladylike, by the way, very unladylike) position in the center of the area.  Good for you Kellyanne, respect the upholstery, UPHOLSTERY MATTERS!

 

conway-couch-2

 

We should be less offended by some lady’s knees on the couch in the Oval Office with a large gathering of men and women in the Trump administration, than by some unnamed lady’s knees on the carpet under the desk in the Oval Office in some unnamed Bubba’s administration, don’t you think?

 

HYPOCRISY DEPARTMENT, item #2

 

Trump: “In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally…”

 

Investigative Journalists from Reuters and other LSM: “Proof!  We want PROOF!!  You LIE!!!”

 

The Left: TRUMP GOT THE RUSSIANS TO HACK THE ELECTION TO HELP HIM DEFEAT HER HIGHNESS, HILLARY THE GREAT!”

 

Investigative Journalists from Reuters and other LSM:: [crickets] [lots of crickets]

 

leo-dicaprio-russian-hacking-meme

 

HYPOCRISY DEPARTMENT, item #3

 

The Left: “Asking for voter ID or demanding photo ID before being allowed to vote is UN-AMERICAN, UN-DEMOCRATIC (get it?), DISCRIMINATORY, you should be ASHAMED!

 

News item (Washington Free Beacon, 2/27/17):

 

The Democratic National Committee used paper ballots Saturday while electing its new chair to verify that each vote was legitimate, despite the Democratic Party’s adamant opposition to voter ID laws.

Prior to the vote, Donna Brazile, who was still interim DNC chair at the time, told the committee in Atlanta on Saturday that the DNC would use paper ballots instead of electronic “clickers,” as original intended, to “verify every name and signature.”

“Pursuant to the rules of procedure, the chair has the discretion as to the voting mechanism,” Brazile said. “It is my determination, based on the system that we tested this morning, that I would like to use paper ballots. And I’ll tell you why.”

“We have to make sure that we can not just count the ballots but verify every name and signature,” Brazile told Democratic Party members, receiving applause.”And I want to make sure that at the conclusion of all of our votes, that you, the members of this party, will be able to review those ballots.”

Brazile’s step to ensure that ballots could be verified appeared to be an attempt to ensure only registered members of the DNC cast votes in the election.

 

COMMENT FROM THE WAVE:  No comment necessary.

 

We feel better now, back to work.

A Slice Of A Typical Day

As I found myself meandering around the house this brisk freezing morning, it seemed that one task led to another without any coherent purpose except going around the game board past GO again.  I wonder if this is typical for others?

After an unnecessary amount of time initially spent at the keyboard, writing and answering emails, watching an episode of NatGeo about Pluto, checking Facebook, texting my team about expected outdoor weather tomorrow AM (hint: COLD), posting on Facebook, letting the dogs move to the other wrong side of the door again, checking to see if anyone responded to my Facebook post, wondering how long I had been sitting at the computer, checking news headlines on the Sunday AM talk shows, returning to Facebook to check again, etc., I needed a break.

Yes, too much Facebook. No argument there.  Suspect I need a hiatus, but I feel compelled to share shelter dogs needing adoption before they get euthanized.  Softie, I know.  And then I have the compulsion to share lots of thoughts with the Facebook world because, well, they NEED to know.

So, maybe time for a nice cup of coffee.

I go to the kitchen to use my nifty little Senseo pod machine, but there is a bag of Satsumas in front of it, a gift from a kid on my team. So I remove the fruit from the bag and notice it’s a recyclable shiny gift bag, and I can use it for Christmas gifts. I take the bag to the portion of the back hall linen closet I have reserved for organizing and saving reusable gift bags and Christmas-y things, and realize I haven’t put the usual holiday decorations on the living room mantle yet, and need to move a couple of oil paintings to make room.

Upon taking one of the pictures down, it is obvious that small mortar and insulation detritus have drifted down from the gap above between the crown molding and the brick wall (my house foundation, being over 50 yrs old, has shifted a bit, yours hasn’t?), and it all needs to be cleaned up.  So I go get the vacuum cleaner, which has a nice little brush attachment that would make a short work of that.  But the dust/dirt canister is full.

I wheel the vacuum cleaner out to the garage to properly clean out the trap, and discover the foam filter is packed, so it will need brushing, cleaning, washing, and drying.  To do that, I shall use the kitchen sink for the washing part.  But there are dishes in the sink from this morning, so they need to be washed first. I usually heat water in a Tupperware tub in the microwave to wash dishes, figure it uses less electricity than using the tankless water heater (I do not have a dishwasher).  But it’s COLD today, and the tap water is very, -very- cold, so I’m just going to splurge and turn the tap to HOT and let it run to get comfy.  Then the water pressure plummets to barely spritzing.  Seems by not using the hot water from the kitchen tap regularly, sediment can build up and when you DO try using the hot water, it all comes cascading through the ancient piping and clogs your faucet aerator and filter.  So now I am removing and disassembling the swiveling aerator head to clean out the clogging grit and sand. (You ought to do this once/month, btw!)

Mission accomplished, dishes washed, we re-focus on the foam vacuum cleaner filter and its related plastic retaining parts.  They get cleaned and dried and it’s time to reassemble the machine to clean off the mantle to retrieve and display the knick-knacks from Christmases past, including handmade ornaments from some of the first kids I ever coached in the early 1970s (now doctors in Jackson, MS; Thanks Rich and Parker!).

But the big dog starts barking her aggressive intruder-alert bark, which is the notification that the doorbell will ring in about 30 seconds with a delivery from Brown, or Blue, or USPS. I’m amazed that the only sounds she seems to react to are delivery trucks (from a block away) and food wrappers (from any distance).

The post office has arrived with my DVDs from Amazon, and it’s now time to vacuum dirt and debris, arrange my little Christmas display, and try to remember what it was I started out to do in the first place.

Ah, yes.  Coffee.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Morsels Debut

chocchip

While reading up on the benefits of dark chocolate recently (and why not?), I was moved to look for them in my local HEB grocery store, thinking homemade trail mix would be cheaper and healthier than available pre-mixed varieties.  But in addition to dark chocolate, there is unsweetened, bittersweet, semisweet, sweet, milk, and white chocolate.  However, DARK chocolate is what the article said had healthy attributes, so those other chocolate cousins were ignored like so many gaily-wrapped-but-unwanted packages of socks, handkerchiefs, and underwear at Christmases of long ago.

Nestle’s (pronounced “Nessels” Down Undah) makes dark chocolate MORSELS, so I bought a large bag, along with almonds, peanuts, and lovely California raisins (but not the dancing kind).

trailmix

This morning I was reading a post and comment and reply from chef-friend Ellise Pierce (of “Cowgirl Chef” fame) on my social media page about a grainy-sugar low-temp chocolate from Aztec origins, and mentally meandering (which you may come to notice I am expert at, sentence-ending prepositions included) from Aztec-chocolate-Mexico to Inca-South America-Brazil-coffee, I wondered what a few (8) dark chocolate morsels added to a steaming cup of espresso (as opposed to ‘expresso’, which really translates as “bad coffee from a fast food joint, Express-o”) would taste like.

Turns out, pretty good.

Also, homemade trail mix is pretty good, but not necessarily healthy. Two cups at one setting is probably a larger portion than needed unless you are trudging the Appalachian Trail.  You have been advised.

chewonki girls AT trail magic