Tuesday, July 31, 2007
But then I feel like such a hypocrite for this reason - because I have admitted on many prior occasions to enjoying fois gras. A couple of weeks ago, I heard this story on NPR about China's growing fois gras industry (in part because it is being banned so many other places). During part of the story they played this sound clip of the geese being force-fed and it was one of the most horrible noises I have ever heard in my life. I think my days of enjoying fois gras are over, no matter how tasty it may be, because I need to live a more ethically consistent lifestyle. So, I am going to try to give it up. Break the habit. I just have to think of that sound; of poor Rusty. I think that will help.
Friday, July 27, 2007
I am not naive enough to believe that we are saviors to the world, spreading truth and democracy. And I don't think my view is paternalistic, but I just think we have some responsibility in doing something to ensure that potentially millions of people don't lose their lives just because we wanted to go home now. I hate the foreign policy approach that got us into the war, but I also recall how much I hated Clinton I's policy approach in Rwanda as well. And we didn't even create the conditions that caused the genocide there (France and Belgium are more responsible for that), but since the genocide, countless commentators and experts have shown that not only that our leaders knew what was going on, but that we could have done something to stop it as well. Even a minimal intervention could have saved lives. The whole Clinton doctrine of "National Interest" that he put forward after Somalia led to some of the greatest atrocities not only of that decade but of the entire 20th century being perpetrated right under our nose but without any notice by our country.
Like I said, I realize that my opinion doesn't matter much to most, and is completely out of sync with 99% of everyone else who thinks we need to either "stay the course" or "get the hell out", but I just can't stand the thought of people dying because of something that we caused and got too tired of dealing with. It isn't easy to resolve. The Bush administration ensured that when they screwed up so royally and had us get involved in this stupid war in the first place, but we have to deal with the facts as they are now. I wish I could go back and change President Bush's decision to go to war, but I can't. But should we withdraw and a genocide erupt, Mr. Obama, do you think that America is innocent of that blood?
Thursday, July 26, 2007
What I find the most baffling about Fred Thompson is this - how is it that someone with more experience portraying a leader on television or in film than actually being a leader can have so much support among Republicans without even being a declared candidate? Is that how weak the Republican field is? Are Republicans so hungry for the days of Ronald Reagan that any actor who is a Republican will do? And why is it, when Republicans who are always complaining about "the liberal bias of Hollywood" and about how certain actors should shut up about politics, are so smitten with an actor from their side of the aisle?
Frankly, I think some Americans who are supporting Fred Thompson right now might have him confused with his character on the show. In fact, they might mistake his scripted remarks on the show for his actual views on policy, crime, and other legal issues. They might be in love with his character as a presidential candidate. Of course, I guess his character could be the presidential candidate. I mean, what is the difference these days between script writers for a television series and speech writers and handlers for presidential candidates? This is precisely what disturbs me so much about our political process these days. When people like Fred Thompson, who served a term and a half as a senator, are taken seriously as presidential candidates, I wish so much for something more akin to European countries where experienced technocrats wield the political machinery.
But hey, I am a nerd. I like people who actually know what they are doing rather than people who are elected into office based on their popularity. In middle school, I believed that I was qualified to run for student government because I did my homework, but what my classmates thought made you qualified was being a cheerleader. After all, cheerleaders didn't need to do their homework when they could just copy off of mine, even if it meant stealing it out of my folder to copy it. I thought, oh, that was just middle school. The adult world isn't like that. It stops being a popularity contest. Ha! Ha! Ha!
I shouldn't just fault the Republicans for this. However, it just seems pretty pronounced in this instance. On another day, I will have to post my theories on Barack Obama's popularity(although, to his credit I would say he has much greater credentials for the White House than being a television actor).
Friday, July 20, 2007
Here is the strange part - I like dresses. There is nothing that I generally consider to be a greater treat than blowing my money on an Anthropologie dress. I like wearing dresses in my daily life. Why is it so different for wedding dresses? I have yet to exactly identify what it is, but the combination of the fact that Mormon-appropriate wedding dresses are generally so ridiculous looking (shirt sleeves and square necks seriously make me want to vomit). Perhaps if I were independently wealthy or a celebrity and could have Oscar de la Renta design my wedding gown, perhaps then I would find something that I like with relative ease. The hard part is, I don't even know what I would like, so I can't even describe a dress to someone to have one made either. I have a feeling that Oscar would just know. In the meantime, I just want to find anything that works and get the wedding dress part over with.
Here are other ways that I am not a bride - all I care about is the music and I think everything is too expensive. Does that make me not a girl?
In the meantime, I can delight myself by watching the Panda Cam at the Atlanta Zoo, that Meredith told me about. Something about watching those bears roll all around, is just so memsmorizing. Can I get rolly-poly panda bears at my wedding? Who cares what I am wearing.
Monday, July 16, 2007
I am excited to get married, and as a part of that, have so many of my favorite people there in the same place. I am already lucky to have a pretty remarkable family, and to add to them the interesting, talented friends that I have, well, lets just say, I am a lucky, lucky girl. I just hope that Mickey has enough room at Disney World for all of that brillance in one place.
It makes turning 29 so much better.
Friday, July 13, 2007
My two cents: I hate L.A.; I hate any sports team associated with L.A.; but in spite of the fact that it is L.A., I am still pleased that Becks has chosen to come play in America. I want him to be successful and cause people to pay more attention to soccer in America. Maybe then Seattle will get a M.L.S. team. Although I am not a huge Beckham fan (although I do like the English National Team, and on a team full of hooligans like Rooney, I think he brings a little more dignity to the came), when I saw him place twice in the U.S. last year, there was a palpable excitement everytime he came onto the field or touched the ball in the games in Seattle and Salt Lake where I saw him play. Here's to hoping he can make it last.
Welcome Becks! And please try to ensure that your kids keep their English accents in spite of living in L.A.
Monday, July 09, 2007
This weekend, David and I took a trip here:
That is Victoria, B.C. We took the Victoria Clipper ferry from Seattle, and only three short hours, and five sick passengers later, we were in Victoria. We enjoyed a free breakfast on our trip to Victoria as a part of our tour package (actually, it was a free champagne breakfast, but since we don't drink alcohol, the Clipper saved some money on us. Our hotel later also saved money on us when we didn't drink the sparkling wine that came with our chocolate covered strawberries - more on this later). Victoria feels British, not Canadian. Perhaps it is because it is a city that so prides itself on its British heritage that it still proudly boasts the name of Britian's longest reigning monarch. Perhaps it is because of the plethora of English gardens, or English estate houses, or shops boasting goods from Scotland and Ireland.
This is where we stayed:
That is the Fairmont Empress Hotel. It is world famous for its afternoon tea. Of course, we don't drink tea, but the hotel was lovely enough. We got chocolate covered strawberries as a part of our trip that David booked. Note: the strawberries were served with the aforementioned, Sparkling Wine. I started to understand a little more why people like Paris Hilton end up with DUIs and in jail when faced with free alcohol around them all of the time. By 2:00 pm, we had already been offered two free bottles of alcohol. Anyway, I forgot to mention that name of our Victoria Clipper weekend getaway package was called "Pure Pampering." Here is David being "purely pampered" and enjoying the strawberries.
Here is my satisfied face after enjoying the tasty strawberries. They were delicious. On Saturday, we had a bit of a technical mishap trying to arrange transportation out to Hatley Castle near Sooke. However, we made the most of the time that we had left that day, first enjoying the flower gardens at the Empress. That is one great thing about Canada - it may be 50 degrees in July, but the gardens in July remain full of color. The roses were blooming all over town.
We had dinner reservations at the Empress Room at our hotel, but on our way there we stopped off at the lovely old hotel library that had the ambiance of an old British Gentleman's Club. Leather bound books make me giddy.
Since my antipathy for diamonds is well documented, David gave me lovely pearl ring that he had made in Australia to match the pearl necklace that he gave me in Paris last year. It was an incredibly kind gesture and ensured only an oyster was harmed in the making of my engagement ring.
We walked back to the Fairmont and ate a delicious lunch in the colonially inspired Bengal Room. We had walked alot and were both tired (although David looks more mischevious in this picture).
I on the other hand just look tired and rather wind blown. The leather chairs in the Bengal room were made of the softest leather, that I seriously wanted to fall asleep sitting there.
Afterwards, we walked around Victoria some more, and saw that in Victoria, their mermaids play the accordian.
Here is one last view of the Fairmont Empress before heading out on the ferry back to Seattle.
And here is David on the ferry saying goodbye to Victoria and hello to months ahead of fun wedding planning. So to sum up, here are the things that I learned in Victoria: I am still way too obsessed with British aristocratic society and need to root this out of me immediately. It is really representative of everything that I detest in life, but it sure is lovely to look at and tasty to eat. Negative. But on the positive, in spite of my significant and numerous flaws, including my incredibly oxymoronic tendencies, David still wants to marry me.
Thank you Victoria! Oh, and also, thank you Victoria for teaching us that not all royal weddings have to be sad, scandal-infused affairs. Your marriage to Albert was a model of domestic felicity.
Thursday, July 05, 2007
Secondly, although I appreciate the technological advances in fireworks spectaculars, I have to say, the show in Seattle had me thinking, huh? It was a Fourth of July celebration that wasn't choreographed to patriotic music, but instead the theme music to Austin Powers, Queen, and Jimminy Cricket? I find patriotic music as annoying as the next guy, but is there any other day of the year when you can listen to "I'm Proud to Be an American" without fear of recrimination? Well, maybe at EFY dances when you are 14, according to my friend Brigham Bowen. In any case, if you aren't going to stick to the parameters of music about America on the Fourth of July, then at least pick decent non-patriotic music. The best song of the night was after the show was over, they played Simon and Garfunkel's "America." See - you can have a song about America that isn't annoying and xenophobic.
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
The second film was also about the struggle to become an artist among the rough streets of Paris, La Vie en Rose, about the life of Edith Piaf. The life of this artist was somewhat grittier, and involved a bit more swearing and alcohol abuse, but there was a moment at the end of the film, where it all became quite charming in its own way. I have been an admirer of her unconventional voice for quite some time, and the film made it all make a little more sense.
Note: In Ratatouille, I was the oldest person in the crowd, except for people accompanying children, of course. In La Vie on Rose, I was probably the youngest person in attendance. I guess people of my age group and younger don't really appreciate the WWII era chanteuse. I guess I also have a problem identifying with people of my own generation (like last night at the Band of Horses concert, for example).
Note: My Parisian movie-fest is about to come to an end. I am getting dragged to see Transformers tonight.