Posts

Showing posts from June, 2008

Father's Day Greetings and Other Miscellanea

Happy Father’s Day to all the other Dads out there. Unfortunately, I live apart from my children but still manage to stay close to them by keeping the lines of communication going. The key is to be there emotionally. Just as it is all to common for fathers to be there physically but not emotionally, it is also possible to remain emotionally accessible to your children even when you are separated by a long airplane ride.In other news…I have started my one class for the summer. I am at that point one’s college education where you’ve nearly run out of classes that you need or are even remotely interesting. The one class I found was on Middle Eastern history. This should be an interesting one. I certainly have opinions on the historical roots of what is going on in that part of our planet but I also know I do not have all the facts yet either and may very well find out I am mistaken in many things. I have already chosen the subject for the obligatory “paper.” My research question will be:…

Hundreds of channels, and they're all crap!

I am a documentary junkie, I admit it. Not too terribly long ago there were fairly reliable sources for such programs on networks like The History Channel, the Discovery Channel, and A&E. Now these networks are filled with shows like Ice Road Truckers, Axmen, and Dirty Jobs. If I were trapped to a desert island and had a chose between an overly-credulous UFO show and a show about high school dropouts working shit jobs, I’ll pick the UFO show.I am a snob, I admit. It is not that I do not appreciate the essential work such people do in our modern economy; I completely agree with the sentiment of the opening lines on Dirty Jobs, where the host/narrator speaks of the jobs “that make civilized life possible for the rest of us.” To my mind though, these shows place these people on a pedestal and carry the not-so-subtle message that “you don’t need to be smart, you don’t need to study or do well in school; as long as you are willing to sweat like a pig and grunt like a “real man” (even i…

The Final Primaries

At the moment, I am living in one of the last states to hold their primary elections, South Dakota. I grew up here but was absent, except for short visits, from 1983 until 2005. With the Democratic race going right down to the wire, South Dakota voters (at least the Democrats) are the recipients of much unaccustomed attention from Senators Clinton and Obama. This attention is probably a good thing if it serves to overcome voter apathy and get people fired up for the whole informed self-government thing.Though I am not registered with any political party, I certainly won’t be voting Republican. Nor am I terribly enthused about the Democratic contenders. The lengths the Democratic candidates have gone to in bending over backwards to appeal to “people of faith” have, quite frankly, appalled me. Sen. Obama announced on May 31st that he has withdrawn from membership in the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago after repeatedly having to distance himself from the incendiary rhetoric of…