Monthly Archives: July 2009

Local Races: Annise Parker for Mayor, Ronald Green for Comptroller

Local races are non-partisan.  I listened to the three people who want to be the next comptroller of Houston.  Hands down, Ronald Green is the best person for the job.  He has the experience and knowledge to do the job.

Will Kathleen support him?

I’m altogether behind Annise.  She will be a great mayor.


As it should be

I visited Jessie today.  At first, she was sleeping.  She woke up when someone refilled her water.  She looked at me but didn’t recognize me.  She just had a little snack and a drink.

My hope is that someone like Roberto will see her and say, “That poor kitten needs fattening up!” and her life will be watching teevee and eating bon bons.

Maybe the bon bons are too much.

I’m thinking about volunteering at BARC (specifically not friends of).  I’ve been trying to desensitize myself.  I’ll explore it during my upcoming staycation.

This is the post I wanted to post


I’m a failure at posting.

Maybe it’s a math problem (or marketing?), but I don’t think I would be bragging about 20%

For the past week or so, the radio talkers on local Salem Radio Network 1070 KNTH have been pushing their listeners to sign an online petition called “Free Our Health Care Now.”  Apparently there are several ways to access the petition, and based on what the talkers said last week regarding problems people had with the site, one can “sign” the petition multiple times on the same computer by using different email addresses.

Now I have two issues.  This morning Bennett and Gallagher’s substitute were going on about the total reaching 800K.  Like a telethon, each host passed the flogging of the petition to the next.

Their purported audiences, as of last December:

Bennett:  3.25 million

Gallagher:  4 million

Medved:  4 million

Prager: 1 million

Hewitt: 1.5 million

In the most generous calculation, assuming that these listeners are all the same people, we come up with an average of 2.75 million.  Let’s say they reached 800K today.  That means that only 29% of their listeners (assuming no duplicate email addresses) agree with the petition.

If we go with the most flattering angle, i.e. all of them have all of these different listeners, then we have a total of 13.75 million listeners.  That means only 5.81% of their listeners agree with them (again, given there are no duplicate emails on the petition).

I’d say either way is an epic fail.

I woke up early enough this morning to call Bennett’s show and ask about this, but I thought better of it.  Seth would probably have hung up on me again like he did last week and has several times in the past.

The second issue is the validity of the numbers in the first place.

No one except my friends, well and you dear readers (who often overlap) knows what radio stations I listen to.  Keeping this info under wraps is important.  Just how many people really listen to AM radio anymore?  I even find myself tiring of it.  Going on two years of Obama bashing and racist bashing at the local level (both of African American and Latinos in the immigration debate) have almost put me at my limit.  I emphasize almost.

It’s almost sad, what with the pleading for African Americans to return to the Republican Party and the Birther Madness.

I guess you could say that at least this effort has surpassed the “Impeach Obama” failure earlier this year.

Michael Berry: Black Black Black Black

As I was driving from work to Target, listening to Michael Berry, I was trying to think of a title for the post I would write later.  The one above was one of the possibilities.  Why did I choose that one?  Because after I thought of it, here comes Berry bitching about people he calls “Professional Black People”:  not professional people who are black, but Professional Black People.  Then he said, “Black black black black.”

Talk about being obsessed.

As I was driving home from Target, Berry took a couple of calls.  He still didn’t have his facts straight about the Gates case and when one caller pointed out a discrepancy between the police officer’s report and the 911 call, Berry just said, “well, you’re welcome to your opinion.”

Berry had been berating President Obama for trying to work things out like an adult (i.e. inviting both parties to the White House) when another caller, who had also pointed out discrepancies,  stated that he didn’t agree with Berry very often, but he did with regard to being cautious when encountering police officers.  Berry, unable to control himself, said, “I want you to come to the station tomorrow for a beer.”

Click.  The caller had hung up.

I seriously believe that Berry didn’t understand why that happened and that his feelings were hurt.

You know, Berry doesn’t have a problem with black people in general.  He’s just got a problem with certain black people.  And here’s a hint to defining that group:  they do not belong to those who know their place, who know when to keep their mouths shut.  His listeners know this.  So, why doesn’t he understand that they do?

What do you think Jessie’s doing right now?

My guess, sleeping.

This morning, she went back to the SPCA.  It’s lucky that she had an appointment since they are at capacity now.

She was a brave girl and  went into the new crate with no problem.

I will miss her.

But I can only hope that she will get adopted into a home where she can roam around, sit in a window in the sun, watch tv in the lap of a loving owner, and have her sweet cry answered with dinner.

How Could I Be So Lucky?

After the new portable A/C unit tripped the breaker twice, I was worried.  My house is old and sometimes old wiring can’t handle new machines.  I thought I would have to get an electrician out and it would cost me a bundle.

Well, I looked this whole tripping a breaker up on the internets, and the first step when that happens is to figure out what’s on the breaker.  Having done that this evening, with R’s help,  I found out that a window unit, the porch light, the ceiling light in the kitchen, another just outside the kitchen, the freezer,  and all of the plugs and lights in my bedroom and bathroom were working off one 20 Amp breaker that I had the new portable plugged into.

So, the lucky part?  There is one outlet under the window that I connected the exhaust tubes from the portable to — and it is a 20 Amp and nothing else in the house is connected to that outlet!  Old-timey crazy wiring works out for the good, for once.

Houston Talk Show Host Michael Berry Can’t Handle the Truth

This afternoon, Micheal Berry was substituting for the dreadful Chris Baker on local radio station KPRC.  In between hating on the local wingnut’s favorite politician, Sheila Jackson Lee, he decided to wade into the whole Skip Gates matter that came up at the end of the President’s news conference last night.

After shouting down two callers who attempted to explain that Gates still had his constitutional rights, conflating a police stop in a car with police entering a residence, and finally going on a rant about there being a broken window in Gates’ house, I decided to call in.

I think I spoke with a guy named Jason and told him the Berry had his facts wrong — there was no broken window — Jason expressed surprise.  He said that Berry in normally very thorough, and then asked where I knew that from.  I said the police report on The Smoking Gun.  He put me on hold.  This was just after 4:00.

While on hold, I washed dishes with the phone pinched between my shoulder and ear.  Big mistake.  Berry is a “screamer” and he blasted my ear several times.  After about 20 minutes Jason came back on the line to ask if I was still there.  He put me back on hold.  Berry yammered for 50 minutes and then I got cut off just as he took a call.  I called back, and Jason stated that they weren’t going to take my call.

This is not an issolated incident.  What gets me, especially about Berry is that he thinks he is getting away with something.  I’ve got to believe that there was more than just me who heard what he said and knew he was making shit up.  As one of the callers today told him:  he just enjoys stirring the pot and getting white people worked up.  I’m glad he’s not in a position of power anymore in our city (he’s a former city councilman).

No Reason to Wish

This morning there was video of a U.S. soldier who was captured by the Taliban.

My first thought wasn’t that he had deserted — that seems absurd — nor that he was stupid.

My first thought was that he is scared — given what the Bush administration has unleashed.  He’s a hostage.  I am certain that my government will do everything possible to get him back alive and safe.

My second thought was of all those videos I watched of Margaret Hassan and the warmongering that coincided with it that almost sent me over the edge, almost lost me my job.

Remember when Jack Murtha said that we were putting our people in Iraq under so much pressure that they killed people?  Remember when people who volunteered, like Murtha and John Kerry were mocked?

This is just wrong.

Copy Cats

For about four years now, I have been taking care of feral cats.  Junebug and Braveheart are the mainstays — Oliver, Baby, Macey, and Rowdy have left us over time.  Sad grey and white cat still shows up for dinner or breakfast (he was here for dinner tonight).

My former co-worker used to feed and trap a colony of ferals in Montrose before she moved on to Cali.

And now the Houston Museum of Natural Science is on aboard.



We went on a field trip there on Friday, and my students pointed out the kittens playing in the bushes.  I wasn’t quick enough to get the second one in the pic, but as we walked around to the entrance, I caught this:



I don’t know why that last pic is smaller . . . (crap, I clicked thumbnail, fixed).  I used my zoom and no one bothered the Museum Ferals.

The one cool thing is that the whole place has been renovated.  The Butterfly Center is now interactive — the coolest thing in my opinion is the console that lets you see how different insects see.  We look very weird to butterflies to say the least!

Some pics without students after the fold. Continue reading