photo

photo
photo by Sheri Dixon

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

I Did Not Move Far Enough South

I say that every year.

Well, every year since 1994, which is the year I moved from Wisconsin to Texas.

I'd been born in Wisconsin, and I hated every single wonderful white winter moment of it. Even as a child- sledding? No thanks. Ice skating? Ummm...only if I can sit in the warming house and drink cocoa. Skiing? You must be joking. Ice FISHING? (one eyebrow raised glare of complete disdain and dis-belief).

That as an adult in Wisconsin I also owned and ran a small family farm only made it worse. When the water tank heater managed to merely keep an inch of open water on the tank surface, the wheelbarrow had to be replaced with a sled to haul feed on, and I needed to carry a sledge hammer to knock the gate free with eyeballs aching from the frigid air and my nostrils shredded with every breath through the snotcicles, THAT decided me that I needed to move South.

Routinely finding tiny dead sparrows under the pine trees on picture-perfect magic ice castle mornings only sealed the deal.

I moved South in December, and marveled at the mild breeze wafting across the lake- the completely UNfrozen lake.

The area of Texas I moved to is the pretty part of Texas- trees, water, hills, flowers- an area that looks for all the world like the pine forests of central Wisconsin where I spent my summers. Only the cactus plants nestled up under the pine trees gives our actual location away.

So winters are mild, springs are a fantabulous riot of wildflowers, summers are...kind of toasty, and autumn is a wonderment of fall colors that can be enjoyed in bare feet.

And then it happens.

The first day each year the mercury drops below freezing, my body and mind go into survival mode and actually physically recoil from the assault of the icy blast. And I say it

"I did not move far enough south".

But here's the thing.

Any farther straight south and we'd be at the mercy of hurricanes- by the time they get up here they're mere shells, empty blusters of rain and wind with perhaps a little tornado thrown in for tantrum effect, but mostly spent.

Southeast is muggy (and east of the Mighty Miss- somewhere I no longer wish to be), and Southwest is...freakin' dessert.

So I'll look at the internet real estate listings in exotic places like Costa Rica, and Ecuador, and Hawaii, mug of cocoa in front of me, wrapped in a blanket, fuzzy slippers firmly on my socked feet.

But here is Home. And Family. And Friends.

And while in Wisconsin, once the mercury dips below freezing, it's a full 6 months before you need to dust off any numbers higher than "32" on your thermometer, here in Texas right now it's a chilly 37 and it won't be warm and 70 again till...

...tomorrow.

*Here is Better*

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Down To Earth

Yanno what I hate?

I hate heights.

We spent part of our summer vacation in '09 in Glacier International Park and it's outstandingly beautiful. We stopped at the ranger station and inquired about which roads to drive since we only had a day there and were told "You must travel the Going to the Sun Road". I asked if it was really scary, because I Do Not Do Scary and was told with a kindly smile "You'll be fine".

It. Was. Horrifying.

On the last leg of the route we stopped and Alec said "Look, Mom- some of those rare ground squirrels" and I said "I hope they all die of rabies- lets go IT'S GETTING DARK OUT".

By the time we were back at the hotel I was delirious. I was talking to Joe, recovering from knee replacement surgery in Helena (and the reason for our trip to Montana) and told him how beautiful-yet-ghastly the drive had been and he said "Well, Sugar- this land makes for tough men".

I told him they weren't tough- they were all brain-damaged from high altitude, lack of oxygen and the freakin' frigid temperatures.

I remained traumatized for weeks.

We visited a friend several days later and there's a ditch about a foot deep along her road and I hollered "Look out- you're too close to the edge".

But I'm not talking about Montana today.

Today I had to do a little work on the roof.

All I needed to do was climb up there and apply stain to the trim up there.

Easy Peasy.

I climbed up. I looked down. I couldn't stand up.

Crab-crawling to the gable, I managed to get most of the stain applied. My knees hurt from crawling on the shingles, my arms hurt from the death grip on the trim and the stain can, and I needed to pee. I could not imagine standing up to do the tippy top trim.

Ward- my hero- helped me down onto the ladder and I ran for the porta potty.

But it rankled that I hadn't finished the job, so after a few minutes to gather my shattered wits, up I went again.

I stood up and applied the tippy top stain.

I laid down and applied the bottom-most stain- an especially daunting task since I wear bifocals.

And Ward- my hero- helped me down onto the ladder and I ran for the porta potty.

There's one more gable to do and then I'm off the roof. The next time it'll have to be stained is in 5 years. Alec will be 15 then.

*Perfect*.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanks By Number

1. My Family- first, foremost and always- the people who I get out of bed for, go to work for, cook for, do for, worry about, stress over, fuss at. The people I couldn't do without, and who give me strength, direction, and a daily dose of awe at just how incredible they are.

2. My Friends- the people who don't even have to like me, put up with me, or be around me, but who choose to do so, sometimes for entire decades. The people who hold my family as dear to themselves as I do, and who are there to catch us if life smacks us down.

3. Our current home- this graceful old Victorian we (mostly) renovated has been shelter in good times and bad, gave me my first lessons in gardening and livestock keeping in Texas, has been the backdrop for every "sickness and health, better or worse" Ward and I have been through, and is where Alec came into the world (actually about 3 ft from where I'm typing). It became magically and affordably available exactly when I needed it, gave me wonderful neighbors and although leaving is so very hard, I'm confident that its new family will love it as much as we do- I wouldn't be selling it to them if I didn't think so.

4. Our future home- only 3 miles from our current home, it still took us years to find it, months to acquire it, and more years to finally build on it. Every inch of it has always taken my breath away, and I don't expect that to ever change. That the house is our own design makes it all the more special and precious.

5. Work- yes, work. I'm fortunate enough to have a job that's (mostly) rewarding and fulfilling and to be in the employ of people who have always taken my opinions seriously and make me feel that I work WITH them, and not FOR them. I strive every day to foster the same atmosphere with those who answer to ME. To have been given the freedom to tele-commute when we need to be out of town for health reasons has been a gift I'll always be appreciative of.

6. The animals in my care- pets or livestock, matters not. They've all taught me and continue to teach me daily lessons in patience, loyalty, pragmatism, hope, community, adaptability, grace. I can gauge my success (or not) in being fully and compassionately human by recognizing that it's reflected back at me in their eyes- and acting accordingly when I so often fall short.

7. The wonders of technology- the computer that's given us so many opportunities to expand the scope of the word "family", medical science that's kept us all alive at one time or another, my bread machine. If TS ever really hits TF, we'll need to learn to like tortillas, because I couldn't raise a loaf of bread with a pulley.

8. The bad bits in my life- times I've been treated unfairly, even cruelly both emotionally and physically. The times I've been truly poor and afraid, truly lost and lacking options. Those are the times that sparked an anger in me- a bullheadedness to keep putting one foot in front of the other no matter what- sometimes in hope of a better day coming up, more often just to show the bastards I wouldn't stay down. Without the bad bits, I wouldn't have been right where I needed to be to find the best of all the others, and I wouldn't be the person I am now who fully appreciates it all.

***Happy Thanksgiving***

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Lousy Douser

So this morning our "adopted" son and his sister came over to check out the new house and do some shooting. Not at the house, we've got a big bank o' clay we shoot into for target practice.

Unbeknownst to me, they also brought dousing rods. Now most folks have heard that dousing rods can find water, and that's true. But they can also find pretty much what you concentrate on them to find for you.

Concentration. Focus. Steady mind and heart.

I was doomed from the start.

"Here- which set speaks to you?" Jordan asked me, setting 2 sets of metal rods in my hands. They were all completely silent.

"Ummm...this one?"

I was shown how to ground them, hold them, walk slowly and follow them.

Jordan asked his to find water and they pointed solidly and immediately towards the creek.

Crystal asked hers to find the Alligator Man- a spirit Alec's seen on our place and I've caught just a glimpse of- and hers directed her to where we're building the house (it's ok- he likes us).

I asked mine to find a good meditation spot for me- I've got my special spot down on the creek bank, but it never hurts to ask the Universe for an opinion on such things.

I walked slowly east and the rods instantly (and creepily)crossed over my neck and rested on my shoulders, stopping my progress.

I walked slowly west...same thing.

North? Ditto.

South? *Dang*

Either the best spot for me to meditate is in the middle of our driveway

or the Universe doesn't think much of me.

'Course, why should it? I'm pretty teeny and mostly harmless...

Saturday, November 20, 2010

"I'm Sorry- They Don't Make Replacement Parts For That Model Anymore"

I'm 51 years old.

I've got streaks of gray hair, smile lines around my eyes and mouth, frown lines between my eyebrows, and some sort of weird turkey neck thing going on between my chin and collarbone.

I've been fighting the last 10 pounds of babyfat since having my last baby...almost 11 years ago.

Nothing on my person could be described as "perky" anymore, and somewhere along the line my upper arm muscles sank and are now mere jelly swaying in a dismaying arm-skin-hammock.

Eight years ago I had surgery to tuck up or remove everything and anything that could drop out of me, because gravity is NOT my friend and it all had.

Not. A pretty. Sight.

In the morning, I used to just "get up" all of a piece and now every individual limb needs to think about it first, then acts grudgingly after careful consideration.

One part at a time.

Things like stamina, endurance, and the ability to get worked up over anything less than an absolute and verifiable catastrophe have become fading memories and for the most part it's alright- Life is All About Change.

I've taken everything with as much grace as an ol' pear-shaped hippiechick can muster and actually was very comfortable with the obvious aging of the body I was dealt this time around

Until

One evening three summers ago we came home from work and running errands, did the chores, made supper and sat down to an easy but mouth-watering dinner of tacos.

I was hungry.

I took the first bite.

Delicious- tender beef, mixed lettuces, grated cheese, sour cream, onions, taco shells still warm and crunchy without being tough...

Hmmm.

What's this?

*Ptooie*

And I was looking at my own tooth in my hand.

Nothing so far in my entire life made me as aware of the aging (also known as "deterioration") of my mortal corpse as looking at a piece of it in my hand.

Staring at my tooth, all I could think was "This is it- the beginning of the end. One by one my parts will fall off and/or out and soon I'll just be a pile of random debris swept into a corner".

That was over three years ago.

I have a crown where that tooth was and my tongue is ALMOST used to its being there.

Even though I've come to terms with the loss of my tooth, I now take a few moments each morning before rising to do a quick inventory as each limb grumbles into motion.

Just to be sure everything's still, yanno, attached.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Job Satisfaction

So we're building a house.

This has been years in the planning, since we're not building a house like most people do- pick a plan out of a book, hand it to a builder and tell 'em to call when you can pick out paint and whatnot.

I drew the house on graph paper. Refined it roughly 143,570 times in the last 10 years, and now that we're at the construction point, we're there every. Single. Day. Several times a day most of the time.

We're also not building a typical stick-built type home- we're building a log home, which means the "constructed shell" is being done by the log home company*'s crew, and our contractor and myself will go in and finish it out.

And that's who I want to talk about- this crew.

I could say they're professional, punctual, and very hard-working and all would be true.

But here's the thing.

While I (and most people I know) have a job where we go to work and do our tasks and if we're very lucky we
a) are doing something tangibly worthwhile and
b) we like what we're doing
the men on our house-building crew get to go to work every day and not just do a job,

but make peoples' dreams come true.

How magical to show up to a job site and see a slab of cement, and within just a few weeks leave out again and leave a HOUSE behind.

Oh, I know this is what they do, and they get paid for doing it, but to show just a tiny bit of appreciation to our crew- Mike, Jeremy, Darryl and DeWayne- I started cooking last night and continued this morning and we brought them lunch today- ribs, corn bread, potato salad, baked beans, and chocolate chip bars.

I don't cook from a box and I don't cook from cans- I start from scratch and set good food in front of my family- like these men started from scratch and have set our house, our home, firmly and finally on our land.

The crew is set to be finished with their part tomorrow, which means I'll be even more frazzled than I am now- because the finish work is where I'll be getting my own hands dirtier than they've been thus far on this project.

Just in case I let this writing thing slide till the house stuff is done, lemme leave you with my recipe for chocolate chip bars- a winner with my family for over 30 years.

And a little Stevie Ray to bake by. Peace.

Mama Dixon's Kickass Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

2 sticks butter, softened
1c brown sugar
1/2c white sugar
2 eggs
1tsp vanilla

Cream the above, then add

2 1/4c baking mix (I use Pioneer)
1 package milk chocolate chips

Spread into a buttered 13 X 9 baking dish
Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes, or till set

*Satterwhite Log Homes in Longview TX- ask for Dusty.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

A Very Sad Brunch

Well, not the entire brunch.

We had bacon, which is always a winner. Not too crispy, but not all limp and fatty either.

There was pecan banana bread made with the one over ripe banana we had left and last year's pecans still in the freezer.

No. The sad part was the eggs.

Don't get me wrong- they were lovely- beautiful whites framing perky deep golden yolks- obviously from our healthy free range chickens who spend all day every day eating bugs and plants and only pecking at the scratch I toss at them out of politeness.

There were 7 eggs in the carton. 7 eggs in the pan gently fried up in real butter.

And that's the end of them.

That's the sad part.

Our chickens free range- not that "put 'em in a big cage with a wire bottom and haul them from spot to spot" bogus free ranging which is really what every single free range egg you buy at the store really is.

Our chickens never see the inside of a coop. They're out scrounging up their own grub (literally) from dawn till dusk and then fly (yes. chickens fly.) up into the trees right outside our bedroom window for the night.

Which is good because the eggs are outstandingly delicious and so orangey yellow people have called me to ask what's wrong with them- the egg yolks from the store are that 'normal' tinted mucous color and they ooze down to be almost even with the whites.

I assume out of embarrassment.

The only negative in this whole arrangement is that true free range chickens are not Human Property, they are part of the Food Chain. So there's a fair amount of...attrition by coyote and hawk.

So several times a year I either hatch out a new batch of chicks (if the hens are not setting on their own) or purchase a box of pullets from the hatchery to keep us always in between 1 and 2 dozen laying hens at all times.

And while the lives of the individual chickens is generally wildly shorter on our little farm, I can't help thinking while watching them break off into natural flocks and working their territories- with hardly a cockfight or mutilated hen on the place, things that are all too common when they're kept penned in close (but safe) quarters- that the life they have here is more satisfying and rewarding for them.

Yes. Whether or not a chicken lives a happy life is important.

We're getting ready to move in a few months (hopefully sooner) and that entails catching and moving all our critters- horse, goats, chickens, ducks, guinea hens and cats. Some will be easy to move, some will be a challenge, and the poultry will be tricky at best, maddeningly frustrating at worst. With that in mind, I've not replenished the flock and we've now got 5 roosters and 6 hens. Three of those hens are over 2 years old, so not laying reliably anymore, but considering they've probably given us over 750 eggs EACH, letting them live out their retirement years seems a fairer deal than making 'em into soup.

With the days getting shorter, even the young hens stop laying reliably, so we're down to frozen eggs from the month plus we were in Houston and poor Joe was drowning in eggs- when we came home we froze almost 20 dozen, which are great to cook and bake with, but freezing changes the consistency so for breakfast they come up lacking.

So we ate the last of the fresh eggs today till probably late spring- I'll buy more chicks as soon as we move, and they'll start laying by May or June.

I'm afraid what it boils down to is that my family is spoiled when it comes to food.

Oh, I don't buy name brand anything, and very very little processed food at all- I cook and bake from scratch not just because I enjoy it, but because that way I KNOW what we're eating because I put the ingredients in my own self and didn't just trust the picture on the front of the box.

We ate the last of the eggs talking of other things, the sunshine yellow yolks smiling up at us from between the warm banana bread and the bacon and then they were gone.

It's a long way to May, but I'm trying to look at it the same way I look at fruits and vegetables- I never buy sweet corn or tomatoes or other short-season stuff out of their natural times because the imposters shipped in during the rest of the year are so much more than a disappointment, they're a disgrace to the produce section.

That a great majority of our populace thinks eggs with the consistency of snot, corn that's more starch than sugar and tomatoes that taste like...nothing... are normal, and healthy, and...food, makes me simultaneously very sad and explains not only the acceptance but the embrace of McAnything served up in a styrofoam box.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

What Reality Looks Like

It's one of those questions better not thought about.

Like "What part of the chicken IS the 'nugget'?" or "Didja ever become consciously aware of your tongue?"

How does the world look through the eyes of someone else?

How does the world look through the eyes of someTHING else?

And how do we know which vision of the world around us is the correct one?

Seriously- how do we know that the colors animals see aren't the true colors of things and it's our human vision that's whacked out?

Bugs have those crazy-quilt refractor kaleidoscope eyes, but maybe there ARE a gazillion of whatever they're looking at and we have completely rudimentary tunnel vision.

When I first started working around horses, I learned that not only do they have one eye on each side of their head, but the messages from one eye don't jive up with what the other eye is sending to the brain- making you an entirely different person to that animal when you walk from one side to the other. And that small area where you're right in front of their nosey? You're INVISIBLE!

And what the hell do cross-eyed cats see?

Even if we all agree that colors, shapes and things visually look the same to all people (except color-blind people), there's still the matter of perception.

What you've been raised around and taught as "normal" affects your perception of everything you see. As will a person's basic makeup and temperament.

Say the word "vacation" and some people see a beach, some the mountains, and some a huge metropolis. They're all correct, depending on whose brain you're looking out of.

Say the words "social drinking" and some people see a fun night on the town or at home with friends bathed in the warm glow of camaraderie, and some people (like me- having had very bad experiences with alcoholics who claimed to be "social drinkers") are slammed with an immediate and violent panic attack. Same scenario, very different response.

Say the word "music" and the possibilities are endless.

Say the words "family dinner" and the snapshot in your mind's eye will depend on your family's cultural background and the culinary talents of your mom (or dad, or whoever is the main cook in your house).

Say the word "home"- Apartment? Subdivision house? Gracious old Victorian? Farmhouse? Condominium? YURT???

So what people are taught as they're growing up, what they see in the world around them, how things add up in their own head forms and gives shape to their own version of the Truth. Which is True for them and those whose raising and life lessons match theirs.

Training + Experience + Conviction = Reality

Here's where it gets weird.

Your Truth may not necessarily be Universal. Because every other culture, group and family thinks and believes just as strongly in their own Truths.

That doesn't cancel out your Truth. They're just different. Not worse. Not better.

Different.

Say the word "god"...

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Off the Wall Book Discovery- "Your Religion Is False"

"Your Religion Is False", by Joel Grus, doesn't fit in the Bargain Book category, since I didn't get it from a book store, and I paid full price ($14.95) for it. I can't even remember how I stumbled onto the website, but once I saw it, I had to have it.

This is not a book for the easily offended, but the beauty of it is that it's not trashing Christianity...or Islam...or Pastafarianism...or even Atheism.

"Your Religion Is False" is an across-the-board dissection of every single type of faith, belief or non-belief and while it's not snarky or cruel, it makes no excuses or justifications either.

The interesting thing is that we've all been raised up in some sort of belief system, making what we know seem sensible and right. So 99% of this book consists of head-nodding, smug chuckling "Wow- those folks are messed up to believe THAT" agreement.

Then there's that shining moment when the page is turned and there it is- YOUR belief system.

And in the critical, analytical light of day and typed there next to other beliefs, what seemed so normal as we grew up, so comforting whenever we were troubled, so obviously indisputable up to that very minute, looks as skewed and unbelievable as the rest of the book.

Far from being a tedious and boring read, Joel manages to cut most beliefs off at the knees in just a few pages- sometimes one is enough.

I understand that his intent was to be an equal opportunity wet blanket, in a humorous and uncomfortable way (the first clue to that is the cover- where "The Deposition" by Raphael is cleverly photoshopped into "Weekend at Jesus's") but here's what I took away from this book-

Just because what you grew up with seems right to YOU, does not automatically make what anyone else believes wrong. Or dangerous. Or threatening.

Of course Mr. Grus also thinks Religious Tolerance is false, so maybe he is just trying to be an asshole and I'm reading too much into it...

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A Brand New Day

Remember two years ago, when we got a new president and a matching House and Senate and all the conservatives howled and wailed and vowed that they'd "take back the country" in the next election...if those damn liberals didn't send it to hell in a handbasket first with their socialist communist fascist nazi-ist plans?

And from that day till last night we heard the planning, tea partying, praying, complaining, bitching, moaning as this administration tried to dig us out of the mess the previous one got us into. Nothing they did was right (pun intended) and everything they did was, unaccountably, too much AND too little.

Anything done that had any effect was "Too much intrusion and stealing our freedoms" and anything un-addressed yet was "doing nothing to help the people".

From Faux News fear-mongering to Rush Limbaugh's pompous bullshit to Glenn Beck's tears of a freedom-loving clown to that whack-job from Alaska screeching "HOWZ THAT HOPEY CHANGEY THING WORKIN' FOR YA?" the entire country was pummelled with sure-fire signs of our imminent demise as the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition.

But that wasn't the half of it.

Then the campaigning started.

I'm over half a century old and can't remember the last time it was proper campaign etiquette to threaten your opponent, AND your opponent's entire party AND population of constituents with actual bodily harm.

In between the vitriol were many promises and vows to "take back the country" and "undo the damage that's been done on the road to socialism".

Two years ago, the people voted against the road we had been on- one that had plunged our nation into third world status regarding accessible health care for all and worse regarding our economy and quality of life.

All the bad things were cumulative and took many years to build up, and a sensible person would see that it would take at LEAST as many years to fix it.

But people who are jobless, hungry, homeless, sick and scared, don't have any sense to spare and want so desperately to believe that someone, somewhere, somehow can fix it NOW that they laid our fragile nation back into the giant paws of the wolves.

For safe-keeping.

And the wolves licked their chops and said "Don't worry the hair of your chinny chin chin- I'll take good care of this...just like I promised".

So...what're they planning on cutting out of the national budget to FIX it? From their campaign 'promises' looks like Social Security, VA benefits, Medicare, Medicaid...if the tea party has their way "government" will be OUT of our lives to leave us the hell alone- without schools, or roads, or any sort of unified infrastructure or protection- we'll be 50 happy little autonomous islands, free to frolic to the will of whatever corporations buy the state governments.

Here's the one thing that keeps me from going batshit insane at this point-

They can't.

They can't FIX it (even their dubious version of fixing it) in 2 years any more than the democrats could.

Because of the checks and balances inherent in our government (designed by some very wise men- the same men who fought against a national religion- even the Christians among them) change comes slowly and carefully and cumbersomely to us.

So today is a brand new day. Not a substantially different day. Not, as the republicans were crowing, the day after the democratic bloodbath when they would swoop into Washington like so many marauders and "take back America".Yes, we now have a Republican majority in the House, but the Senate and Oval office are still Democratic.

I suspect that in two years, the poor American people will still be poor, still be frustrated, still be confused and be very very angry that all those pretty campaign promises were just that- enticements of flowers and candy, dinner and a movie so the country would take THEM back.

And I'll try really hard to refrain from screeching "SO- HOWZ THAT CHANGEY BACKEY THING WORKIN' FOR YA?"

Monday, November 1, 2010

If You Do Nothing Else Tuesday...

...go vote.

I've got my voter card in my purse and ready to go- proudly red ink stamped "democrat".

This is handy since not only do I actually vote democrat, but in elections where you must choose a straight party line, there IS no line in small-town East Texas for democrats. I AM the line and breeze right by all those republicans lined up out the door.

I remember going to the voting booth with my parents and getting to pull the levers on the big gray machine- the final red one opening the curtain and clearing out the votes with a metallic "swish".

I remember taking my kids to stand in line to vote, up to and including our youngest, who is handy at helping me remember how to work the newfangled faux computer voting machine.

I remember to vote. Every single election.

Because just one vote does make a difference.

Everyone gets one vote and each vote counts and matters. When we cease to believe that or become too busy or too lazy or too apathetic to haul our butts to the polling place and take five freakin' minutes out of our day to vote is when we lose more than elections, or majorities in Washington DC, we lose by abdication our right to any bitching whatsoever about the government in office.

I get so tired of people not just complaining, but getting downright aggressive about what they hate about the current administration, yet when asked if they voted, they say "No- I don't vote- it's depressing and one vote doesn't matter".

Really.

The way it's SUPPOSED to work is
-everyone over the age of 18 votes. In every election.
-the winners make the laws and whatnot for the next few years
-winners are elected by majority vote, so once elected everyone gets behind the winners because we're a "majority rule" kinda nation
-if this time's winners clearly suck at leadership and/or listening to their constituents, they get voted out the next election

The way it SEEMS to work is
-only really old or really fanatical people vote because they're the ones who make the time to do it
-the winners kiss as much lobbyist ass as they can while in office
-if your candidate doesn't win, it's assumed that there was corruption and cheating at the polling place, so "that other guy" didn't really win at all
-all the people from the losing side (including the candidates) whine and scream about the country being brought to quick and burning ruin by the winning parties with no chance of survival

Shut up.

Tomorrow is Tuesday- I'm voting democrat because I believe that's the right thing to do for my family and my country. If moderate republicans regain the majority I'll try to get behind them and hope they do the right and just things not just for themselves, but for their (and our) country.

If the Tea Party candidates are elected into office, we're all in deep shit.

Including, and perhaps mostly, the tea partiers, who, for some reason, fail to see that if they succeed in stripping the government bare of all 'socialist intrusive programs', none of their social security or VA checks will be in the mail next month.

The Tea Party thinks they're a powerful grassroots movement, blazing a path back to how America was founded. I hope the rest of us see that they're funded by the very people they claim to hate, and those very people will happily and gleefully chew up the tea partiers and spit them out...first.

So if you do nothing else Tuesday- go vote.

Vote thoughtfully.
Vote passionately.

Vote against insanity and ignorance.
Vote against the Tea Party.
There was an error in this gadget