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6/30/08

dear eternal family,

Ever since I was an infant, my extended family (on my mother's side) has held "informal" get togethers every Sunday evening. These were usually hosted by my grandma, who, without saying a word, somehow guilted everyone into coming. Every Sunday. For over 20 years. I can only imagine what that kind of power feels like.

Now that my grandma has left on a mission, the Sunday get together has dwindled to a few of us eating cereal at my Aunt's house. Thus, spouseman and I decided that he could safely opt out of the get-together. I would go, ( I can't not go. I have been cognitively trained to seek out my family every Sunday evening. No matter where they are.) and spouse would stay home to finish a project. (Ok, I'm outing him. He was tying a quilt for his friend's infant.)

Anyway, I show up at said get together, sans Dan. And you would think it was the freaking end of the whole world.

relative: "Where's Dan?"

me : "He's at home. He's finishing that quilt."

relative: "Did we hurt his feelings?" (me, internally: wtf?)

me: "No. He just wanted to finish that quilt."

relative: "Are you sure?"

me: YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

relative: "Now I'm worried we hurt his feelings!"

me: trying to resist the urge to strangle relative.

other relative: Hey, where's Dan.

me: At. Home.

other relative: Well is he coming?

me: I don't think so.

other other relative: Wait! Where's Dan?

me: sigh.

Replay scene 10 times.

Despite the fact that only 1/3 of the family was there, my missing husband was apparently so catastrophic, that the whole function fell apart. Despite the fact that I have been faithfully coming to these functions my whole life, my husband of barely over 1 year is clearly more important. Then I remembered the near-to-last thing my grandma said to me before leaving on her mission-

"If you ever leave Dan, I will just stop talking to you."

Gee, thanks. After we all die (and hopefully not by strangulation,) and are enjoying the next life as an eternal family, I will apparently need to duct tape myself to my husband. Because I just can't handle an eternity of "Where's Dan?"

I hope they have duct tape in heaven.

6/28/08

Someone left me an anonymous comment disagreeing with my politics. Shocker. I found it a possibly valid point/amusing/and slightly lacking in balls (if you are going to criticize someone, grow the pair necessary to leave your name, otherwise your comment is just particularly verbose blog graffiti.)

Here is the comment- in it's original form- (It is referring to my post about the supreme court ruling on habeus corpus for prisoners at Guantanamo Bay)

"I'm not a math whiz, but I am confused as to how naming two people, (out of nine, or approximately 22%) to the Supreme Court causes the court to be hand selected by Bush. Did Bush have to re-elect the seven other justices? If so, I find it hard to believe he'd keep old Ginsburg on the court.

The only selection of his that would have made any difference was the replacement of Sandra Day O'Connor (spelling?). Filling the chief justice with Roberts really just kept the status quo.

(Note from the author: This is were it gets quite good, ! :) )

It frustrates me when supposedly (and self proclaimed no less) intellectually superior people make outrageous statements that are at best half -truths and never get called on it. "

Let's deal with the more superficial aspects first.

I never proclaimed myself to be intellectually superior. I just implied it. Very, very, different. One must understand the subtle nuances of language to understand my implied intellectual superiority :) Sorry you didn't get the memo, my no-name friend. And I'm joking, in case you didn't catch that.

Which leads me to reiterate my previous point. Does leaving an anonymous comment really succeed in "calling me on it?" Not really. It kind of implies that you are afraid of me and not willing to actually engage in conversation. Is that not what you meant anonymous? Well, I would check with you to confirm, but I have no idea who you are.

Now let's get down to the meat and potatoes (ok, apparently I am reverting to my grandpa's idioms, oh well.)

The 22% thing is a pretty valid point. Ten points to you, anonymous. HOWEVER, sheer logistics tend to ignore a few important things.

1. Although the vote of the chief justice does not legally carry a higher weight than the other judges, the chief justice is the most senior member, which grants him or her certain privileges. For example, if the chief justice is in the majority in a particular instance, he or she will decide who writes the opinion of the court. The opinion of the court is significant because it will be used as an example of precedence should a similar court case arise. Thus, the opinion of the court can impact the result of other cases. Should an opinion of the court lean to the right, the precedent set determines that other court cases are settled in a similarly conservative manner.

If you are still reading this, congrats.

What this means is that by selecting a very conservative Chief Justice Roberts, the odds are that any issued opinions of the court will likely be conservative in nature.

In my opinion, although this does not negate the fact that Bush did only appoint 22% of the current supreme court, he did hand select a very conservative Chief Justice, whose opinion is central to the functioning of the court as a whole. The 11% percent represented by Chief Roberts is a small role numerically, but a critical role when that 11% often determines the tone and precedent of court opinions.

In closing, I agree with you anonymous. I should have been more clear in my language. I should not have indicated that Bush hand selected the supreme court as a whole. I should have clarified that he hand selected a very conservative chief justice, to preside over a relatively conservative supreme court ( 7/9 were appointed by Republican presidents, 4/9 are considered "conservative" with the swing vote going to Kennedy,) I do not believe that my math blunder takes away from the significance of the court's ruling.

I dunno, I guess your comment was....let's say, 11% valid. And not in the very influential, can determine the course of legal history for generations sort of way. More in the math way, like you meant in your comment.

And then I should have spent more time proclaiming my intellectual superiority. Because even though this blog mostly consists of me talking about my hair/boobs/ or my husband, that's totally enough of an arena to proclaim my high IQ.



6/24/08

Unsolved Mysteries...

Unsolved Mystery 1:

Two weeks ago, my husband made two tarts. From scratch. Both sent my females relatives into fits bordering on inappropriate. Forget cake. These were better-than-sex-tarts.

Last week, as I was leaving for class, I saw husband pull out a box of brownie mix. I returned home to kitchen smelling deliciously chocolatey, and I was once again pleased that I decided to marry someone with such excellent culinary skills.

When I arrived home, I dug into the pan of brownies, and took a bite.

And spit it out. The brownie tasted like a chocolate covered bouncy ball. To test my theory, I cut another, and threw it on the counter.

It bounced. Repeatedly.

How is it that my husband, of orgasm tart fame cannot make a batch of box brownies?

Mystery 2

Previous to beginning school, I sub taught for Granite School District. This was a dark era in my life and I generally prefer not to talk about. However, I do remember that I was capable of standing in front of my students, and teaching a lesson.

I am also quite capable of giving talks in my ward of 500 people.

Why, oh why then, can I not give a simple presentation in front of my classmates without totally loosing my sh*t?

Mystery 3

Where has my capacity for writing 8 page papers in 2 hours gone? Where? I need that skill!

6/23/08

sad, sad, realization.

I will never not have "Mormon hair."

Never, no never.

No matter the length, cut, or style I receive at the hair place, in two days, my hair will revert to-

being flipped out on the bottom, and slightly turned under on the top.

I don't know why this happens, but I suspect it is karma. It's like the universe is saying, "If you want to spend inordinate amounts of time making fun of other MCBs, FINE, but you will be cursed to have their hair style of preference. FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! bwahahahahahaaaaa"

Sigh.

6/18/08

confession

Sometimes I get awkward and all embarrassed when people post super-personal information on their blogs. The meaning of life. Their deepest, darkest, feelings......

It kind of creeps me out. But as I've been told, I can be a little "cold."

Thoughts?

6/16/08

oh my effing gosh.

I'm supposed to be writing a paper on my "philosophy of education" but i stopped for a quick blog-stalk break and I don't have time to write a whole post on what I found while blog stalking so this has got to be quick. And I am going to break a cardinal rule of mine and write a LOT IN CAPS.

DEAR FELLOW MORMON CHILD BRIDES:

When I told you to write something original, because all your blogs look/sound/are the same, you guys all got together and decided,

"OK LET'S PULL A PRANK ON THAT BIYOTCH STEPHANIE. HERE IS WHAT WE WILL DO. ALL DURING THE MONTH OF JUNE WE WILL WRITE A POSTS ABOUT THE EXACT SAME THING. MAKE SURE IT IS AS SELF-INDULGENT AS POSSIBLE!!!!!!"

And then they all put there hands in a circle and said 'Ready? OKAAAY!'

Well, MCBs, you got me. I am impressed with your group co-ordination skills. June has consisted of the following.

"I am so busy lately! Sooooo busy! What with still working on my under-grad because I took all my summers of to vacation at Powell, I am no where near being done with school! *I am just so busy I don't know how to handle it! It doesn't even feel like summer yet!** I haven't even had time to go to the pool! But I am still so blessed, and my husband is still the best, because I've been so busy I haven't had time to cook! So he made dinner last night! Because I am so busy!"

*I may have inserted that bit about Powell

** I did not make that part up. I have seen that phrase all over the blogosphere.

There is something deeply ingrained in our LDS culture. Not doctrine. Culture.

1. Busyness is good. Idle hands=devil's workshop. Now while I think being productive is great, I also think that women (and men) like to create busyness in their lives solely for the sake of busyness. This isn't healthy.

2. Even if you are stressed out of your mind, legitimately, and could maybe use some help, it is never acceptable to imply that your life is anything less than perfecto. That may imply that maybe marriage is tougher than you thought, or your kids are challenging you in ways you never imagined. Or maybe your life just sucks right now. Whatever the reason, it is never okay to mention this, especially in the blog world. You can mention how you are sooooo busy, but you must, must, must, follow this up with a statement about how you are still So Happy! Life is Great! And your husband, as always, is "The Best."

This turned out being longer than I thought (procrastination is so great! the best! and when I'm really stressed, he makes me dinner...). Essentially, here is the deal, MCBs

It's great that you are soooo busy being busy, but we still need to work on avoiding that whole group thought" mentality. Maybe next month.

6/14/08

my mom watches the news for me

On Thursday, my mother called me, all a twitter with "news." I wanted to ask her if she was pregnant, because whenever I have "news" that's what she asks. But I didn't, and that my friends, is called opportunity lost.

Anyway, her news was that the Supreme Court recently ruled that prisoners at Guantanamo Bay do, in fact, have a rightto habeas corpus (reversing a law the Bush administration passed in 2006).

She was very happy because

1. The decision made conservatives mad.

2. Any sign that the xenophobic, checks-and-balances -eschewing Bush administration is struggling to keep the sh*# from hitting the fan (when your own hand-selected conservative supreme court goes against you.....) is a good sign in her book.

3. Mostly, it made the conservatives mad. Because only good, Christian, white people deserve the right to a fair trial.

I am similarly pleased, because I recently got in a little class argument with our friend mccommenster about how most people view civil rights as a convenience. It is good to support civil rights, such as the right to a fair trial, when the people affected are guaranteed non-terrorists. It is less convenient when you have to give those rights to someone potentially threatening. Conservatives, such as McCain, see it as a waste of time, because, "These are bad people."

It is easy to see things that way, but consider how easy it also is to decide that someone is a threat. An Islamic man can be detained in the airport simply based on his appearance. I'm never a fan of slippery-slope arguments, but if we start taking away the right to habeas corpus from some people, where will we stop? With people that "look" like terrorists? With Muslims? With people who look different? As dangerous as it may seem to give potentially terroritsts a trial, it seems more dangerous not to.

Of course, Mr. President is none to pleased. The Bush administration will ``abide by the court's decision,'' the president said following the ruling, during a news conference in Rome. ``That doesn't mean I have to agree with it.''

Of course you don't. Civil rights aren't really your thing. Now please return to revamping the Patriot Act so that you're legacy as our president can be legalizing the right to listen to my telephone conversations.

And mom, um, is there something else you want to tell me?

-quotes by mccain (funny how that sounds kinda like mccomm,) and the president were provided by an article I found on bloomberg.com

6/13/08

currently...

Dan is watching season three of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It's either bad sci-fi-drama or BYU TV devotionals in this house.


Fortunately, we now live in a place with more than one room, so I can just walk away...


Except I can't. I have a feeling that Buffy MIGHT just be craptastic enough to catch my attention. It has:

Teenager Drama

Bad Fashion Choices

Hot Unavailable Vampire Guy

Undead People.

The only thing that would make this better is if they had the people from BYU TV make guest appearances....

6/11/08

quote of the day

"Graduate school keeps getting in the way of important things, like exercise and sex."

6/9/08

ooohhhh education, you suck sometimes.

Someday, I will write a long, emotion-ridden (yes, occasionally I allow myself to feel things) post about how frustrating it is to live in a world where ADD is the excuse stupid people make when they do something, well, stupid. "Oh! I forgot to do _______, I just have ADD!" No you don't. You are just not very smart. I have ADD. My brain has trouble forming certain synapses. You simply do not have a brain. BIG DIFFERENCE.

I will also include how frustrating it is to read education text books in which kids with ADD are lumped into the same group of people who suffer from truly debilitating learning or physical disabilities. It is also fun to be stereotyped in every little "case study" highlighting a student with ADD. "Jimmy has ADHD* He has a hard time completing his coursework and therefore is in a lower reading group. He also has difficulty making friends. The only subject he excels in is P.E. because it doesn't require him to sit still and focus, it is also the only time he feels equal to his non ADD peers. What should the teacher do?"

The answer is generally consult the Jimmy's parents in order to get Jimmy on some serious medications. Or truly bizarre techniques like having Jimmy wear an eye patch (If one eye is covered! He will focus better!) The answer is rarely-

Stop putting Jimmy in lower reading groups, because it is highly likely he is bored there.

Stop stereotyping him by identifying mindless games of dodge-ball as his only form of school success, and....

Stop being stupid and using ADD/ADHD research from the 1960's to write your damn textbooks.

Oh wow. I think I just wrote that post. Go me.

I now have to write a little "online classroom" post on what I would do if I suspected one of my students had "attention difficulties." Or maybe I should just play dodgeball, since that is the only thing I'm good at.

*ADD and ADHD are apparently now the same. Because all kids who have trouble focusing are hyper. All of them. All the time.

PS. I would like make one slightly hypocritical rule here. I can make fun of my ADD. People I like can make fun of my ADD. People who are of lesser intelligence, and think I should wear an eye-patch, may not.

6/4/08

THIS IS NOT STEPH

Ha ha i broke in, and now all your blogging secrets are mine!!! I mostly just wanted to say hi and thank you all for reading my wifes blog.

peace

The Phantom!!

6/2/08

private parts....

No, I am not going private. Me going private is about as likely as me actually melting from humiliation. And since I am not a character out of Wizard of Oz............

Pretty much I spent two minutes being embarassed, three minutes capitalizing on the embarassment by writing a blog post, and two seconds getting over it.

Plus, it is rude to go private. It gets in the way of proper stalking.

Oh, and internet, when you admit to blog stalking it is stalking, not stocking.