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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Leon County, Florida
Member since: Tue Feb 12, 2008, 10:18 PM
Number of posts: 25,106

Journal Archives

Is there a way to block being called as a juror for certain groups?

There are two groups that I do not participate in, one whose views I agree with, another whose views I do not, that I have gotten called for jury duty for posts.

I do NOT want to be a juror for these groups. The one I don't agree with, I often agree with the alerted post but I know that I am biased about that group so I don't want to make decisions about the posts there.

The group I do agree with the views seems to be having some interpersonal conflicts. I don't know the people involved and don't want to make decisions concerning the various conflicts of that group.

But I have been called for jury duty several times recently for both groups and it's getting annoying. Perhaps there should be a way to be automatically excused from jury duty for groups?

Here is a problem American women need to consider

While looking for a clip of the Helen Reddy song "I AM Woman" I came across a video of Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez, Britney Spears performing a song with the same title. I thought "Great! a remake of that old song."

How wrong I was. Rather than an empowering song enforcing how strong and independent women are, this thing sexualizes and objectifies women, not only in the dance routines of the video, but in the lyrics.

The most coherent verse of the lyrics is:
I mean fashion allegiance is a passion
I built this body to relax in
Try to bring me down Ima get the last laugh in
Don't need to talk I speak with action
I perfected the laws of attraction
Ima whole package plus satisfaction
Better check yourself before you get what you asking
Don't get it twisted give ya boy a passion
RESPECT is all that Im asking
Woman plus life equal alright
but woman no life Id like to see you try

Now compare it to Helen Reddy and Ray Burton's I Am Woman:
I am woman, hear me roar
In numbers too big to ignore
And I know too much to go back an' pretend
'Cause I've heard it all before
And I've been down there on the floor
No one's ever gonna keep me down again

Oh yes, I am wise
But it's wisdom born of pain
Yes, I've paid the price
But look how much I gained
If I have to
I can do anything
I am strong (strong)
I am invincible (invincible)
I am woman

You can bend but never break me
'Cause it only serves to make me
More determined to achieve my final goal
And I come back even stronger
Not a novice any longer
'Cause you've deepened the conviction in my soul

Oh, yes, I am wise
But it's wisdom born of pain
Yes, I've paid the price
But look how much I gained
If I have to
I can face anything
I am strong (strong)
I am invincible (invincible)
I am woman

I am woman watch me grow
See me standing toe to toe
As I spread my lovin' arms across the land
But I'm still an embryo
With a long, long way to go
Until I make my brother understand

Oh, yes, I am wise
But it's wisdom born of pain
Yes, I've paid the price
But look how much I gained
If I have to
I can face anything
I am strong (strong)
I am invincible (invincible)
I am woman

Oh, I am woman
I am invincible
I am strong

I am woman
I am invincible
I am strong
I am woman

What message does this give to our young women? No wonder we are losing ground on women's issues!

For those who want to compare the two videos for themselves:

Controversy erupts over fundraiser for Shelly Leonard (AlienGirl)

This is not a very well written item, but somehow it seems that the Church of Scientology is trying to use AlienGirl's popularity now that she can't fight back.

Controversy erupts over fundraiser

A minor controversy has erupted over a fundraiser that's planned for Saturday evening at the Fort Harrison Hotel. It's a celebration of the life of Shelly Leonard, a 2010 Democratic state House candidate from Clearwater who recently died. It's also a fundraiser for the Martin Luther King Center Neighborhood Coalition, which hopes to reopen the closed MLK Center in Clearwater. However, Leonard's family does not endorse the event, which costs $35 per person and includes live music and dancing. Meanwhile, some of Leonard's associates are moving forward with the event, saying it's what she would have wanted. Leonard was not a Scientologist, but the Church of Scientology offered the venue for the event because it agreed with Leonard's stance on reopening the MLK Center, her associates said. Leonard's family suggests donating directly to the Martin Luther King Center Neighborhood Coalition, a nonprofit group. Contributions can be sent to P.O. Box 1492, Clearwater, FL 33755, or via the web at http://savethemlkcenter.bbnow.org.


Once a year Yosemite spectacle

Yosemite waterfall turns to 'flowing lava' in rare February spectacle caught on camera

By Associated Press
Last updated at 7:13 PM on 19th February 2012

Fame: The waterfall's lights last for just about two minutes, giving the lesser-known waterfall in the park - though the longest free-falling one - its annually short-lived but long-remembered fame

A window of time just opened in Yosemite National Park when nature photographers wait, as if for an eclipse, until the moment when the sun and earth align to create a fleeting phenomenon.

This marvel of celestial configuration happens in a flash at sunset in mid-February — if the winter weather cooperates.

On those days the setting sun illuminates one of the park's lesser-known waterfalls so precisely that it resembles molten lava as it flows over the sheer granite face of the imposing El Capitan.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2103408/Yosemite-waterfall-turns-flowing-lava-rare-February-spectacle-caught-camera.html#ixzz1my1p0Nvm


Murmuration of tree swallows in Florida

Apparently tree swallows have been swarming in Florida at various places - Sarasota in mid-December and now Ruskin since about the first of February. My sister and her husband are going to try to watch them tonight

Here are some videos that people have posted on YouTube:

(This guy has several videos of the swallows, so check his channel)

Chuprcabra or Texas Blue Dogs?

I've been sure that these things were mangy coyotes, but this seems to indicate there are other possibilities!

Texas Blue Dogs
Jon Downes travels to the Lone Star State to solve a canine cryptozoological mystery
By Jon Downes

The blue dog stuffed and mounted in Dr Phyllis Canion's fireplace

February 2012

My search for the blue dogs of Texas began in November 2004, when I visited a farm in Elmendorf, just south of San Antonio, where local rancher Devin McAnally had shot a hairless, blue-skinned canid in July that year (see FT199:48–49) (1). He took photographs of it to a local convenience store where one of the customers said that it looked just like “the chupacabra that her grandmother had told her about when she was a girl”.

Thus was born the legend of the Texas chupacabra. I took one look at the bones of the unfortunate creature and was convinced that it was nothing of the sort. Meanwhile, the Elmendorf beast was discussed widely across the Internet and dismissed as a coyote with mange. Well, I was pretty sure that this couldn’t possibly be the answer either, and over the next six years I studied the matter from afar and hoped that I would eventually get back to Texas to investigate in person.

In the spring of 2009 – thanks to the generosity of Richie and Naomi West – Corinna and I returned to Texas and became involved in the hunt for the blue dogs, as what started as a holiday became a full-scale investigation. Richie and Naomi had already visited Blanco, Texas, where another specimen was languishing in the deep freeze belonging to a local student taxidermist. He took a number of tissue samples, which were sent off for DNA analysis. The results have since come back from the Davis Labs, California: it was a coyote cross; although what it was crossed with proved impossible to isolate.

More with a good amount of factual information: http://www.forteantimes.com/features/fbi/6298/texas_blue_dogs.html

What Got Lost in the Debate About Birth Control

By Erika Christakis | February 20, 2012
With this hysteria at a fever pitch, it’s easy to forget a few simple truths. Taxpayers spend more than $11 billion each year (in 2001 dollars) on costs associated with unintended pregnancy. It’s a conservative figure that only includes public insurance costs and not the larger financial burden of bringing unwanted children into the world.

An estimated half of all pregnancies in the U.S. are unintended according to an analysis by researchers at the Guttmacher Institute and published in the journal Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, and of those unplanned pregnancies, a further half end in abortion. That’s an awful lot of unwanted children and fetuses. By age 45, more than 40% of all American women will have had at least one abortion, a rate almost twice that of Western Europe. A comprehensive study by the World Health Organization confirmed that abortion rates in countries that prohibit or restrict legal abortion are no different than abortion rates in countries with liberal abortion laws; the only reliable way to reduce abortion is through the provision of affordable, accessible contraception. To cap off last week’s debate came the news that there has been a surge in births outside marriage, the fastest growth being among white women in their twenties with some college education. More than half of births to women under 30 now occur outside of marriage. Is this really a time to try to limit contraception? What about the reckoning of the reality of human lives?

People who cry moral indignation about government-mandated contraception coverage appear unwilling to concede that the exercise of their deeply held convictions might infringe on the rights of millions of people who are burdened by unplanned pregnancy or want to reduce abortion or would like to see their tax dollars committed to a different purpose.

Why should an employer’s right to reject birth-control coverage trump a society’s collective imperative to reduce unintended pregnancy? Should employers be allowed to withhold a polio vaccine or cataract surgery or safe working conditions on similar “moral” grounds?

Read more: http://ideas.time.com/2012/02/20/what-got-lost-in-the-debate-about-birth-control/?xid=gonewsedit#ixzz1mvSXxQru

Hassling T-Mobile for fun and frustration

For a long time I've been getting debt collection calls. Problem is, not one is looking for me. My phone is listed as A. E. Ziggy in the phone book and I keep getting calls for people whose first name begins with "A" and the last name of Ziggy. Andrew, Andreas, Anthony, Amanda, Abigail, etc.

Most of the time there is a human on the line that I can tell (1) they have the wrong number and no one by the name of A----- Ziggy lives here and (B) Don't call this number again. Sometimes, it's a robocall but when I call back the number I can reach a human and tell the (1) and (B). It's worked, those companies do not call me again.

T-Mobile? Nope, no humans involved. It's a robocall. If I make any of the choices in the menu, I eventually get to a place where I have to have a T-Mobile phone number or account number to get to a customer service representative. I've never been a T-Mobile customer, so that gets me no where.

I reported them to the Do Not Call list but I kept getting calls. I called the local T-Mobile sales place, tried every T-Mobile number I could find on the web, still get the calls. This has been going on for months.

So I put in a complaint with the state consumer agency and for good measure, the state Attorney General. I got a nice letter from the consumer agency with a copy of a letter from T-Mobile. The T-Mobile letter claimed they had removed my phone number from their accounts and notified their debt collectors to put it on their do not call list. The next day I got a robocall from a T-Mobile debt collector looking for Andrea Ziggy...

I had already written a letter to the consumer agency telling them that while I appreciated that MY number had been removed from T-Mobile's list, that did not solve the problem of other consumers having no way to tell T-Mobile that they have the wrong number and that T-Mobile should not call it again.

Tonight I got a call from a T-Mobile customer service person. She was trying to convince me that T-Mobile had done everything they could to make sure I was not called by their company again. Uh, lady, you JUST called me. According to her, my number has been on their do not call list since December and I should not get any calls from them. So who was it claiming to be calling from T-Mobile LAST WEEK?

I warned her in the first minute of the call that I was antagonistic to any one from T-Mobile. I was polite and did not use any curse words, but was not pleasant. I explained to her everything I wrote above.

At the end of our discussion, she asked what she could do to make me happy. I told her "Nothing. T-Mobile will never be able to make me happy with the company. I've never been a T-Mobile customer, will never be a T-Mobile customer, and will tell everyone I know, in person, in emails and over the internet that they should never be T-Mobile customers."

I did tell her that I might be satisfied if I don't receive a call from T-mobile or anyone representing them for at least two years. Or never.

My husband tells people I don't hold grudges - I nail them to the wall and throw darts at them.

Oh yeah - DO NOT do business with T-Mobile.

OK, maybe her son will redeem her - Bobby Deen on Not My Mamma's Meals

First episode I've watched, he tackled Paula Deen's infamous Krispy Kreme burger. I missed the calorie count on the original but here's his remake of it:

Monster Mushroom Burger


4 large portobello mushrooms caps, wiped cleaned
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

1/2 cup plain nonfat Greek-style yogurt
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 lime, zested and juiced

4 large slices whole-grain peasant bread, each cut in half
1 cup baby arugula
1 large tomato, cut into 8 slices
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup roasted red pepper strips, drained

Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.

Place the mushrooms in a baking dish or pie plate. Whisk together the vinegar, oil, salt and pepper until blended. Brush the mushrooms with the vinegar mixture; let stand for up to 15 minutes.

Place the mushrooms on the grill rack and grill until tender, 4 to 6 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.

Meanwhile, combine the yogurt, rosemary and zest and juice of the lime in a small bowl until blended. Brush the bread slices with the yogurt mixture. Layer half the slices with the mushrooms, arugula, tomatoes, onions and red pepper strips. Top with the remaining bread slices. Serve immediately.

Calories: 202
Fat: 6 grams
Saturated Fat: 0.5 grams
Sodium: 541 milligrams
Carbs: 27 grams
Fiber: 3 grams
Sugar: 6 grams
Protein: 12 grams


If he can reformat her recipes like that it might be worth watching his show.

AlienGirl - Former Democratic state House candidate Shelly Leonard dies of cancer

Former Democratic state House candidate Shelly Leonard dies of cancer

By Mike Brassfield, Times Staff Writer
In Print: Wednesday, February 15, 2012

CLEARWATER — When she ran against incumbent state Rep. Ed Hooper in 2010, Shelly Leonard wasn't your typical candidate. She was a 37-year-old single mother and cancer survivor.

The feisty Democrat made her cancer history a part of her stump speech, talking about the need to make health insurance more accessible. More than 16,000 people voted for her in Clearwater-based House District 50. But nearly 24,000 voted to keep her opponent in office, so Leonard went back to her job as a social worker.

Last year, her oral cancer returned. On Saturday, she died due to complications from chemotherapy, just days before her 39th birthday. "She was fighting the cancer valiantly," said her friend and campaign treasurer, Van Farber. "She passed away peacefully, without pain, and surrounded by members of her immediate family."


Celebration of Shelly Leonard's life

What: Dinner, live music and dancing

When: 6 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25

Where: Fort Harrison Hotel, 210 S Fort Harrison Ave., Clearwater

Admission: A $35 check made out to the Neighborhood Coalition to Preserve the MLK Center

Information: (727) 729-6887

More: http://www.tampabay.com/news/politics/elections/former-democratic-state-house-candidate-shelly-leonard-dies-of-cancer/1215436
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