A brown belt for Big Guy – not that it’s important
Mon, 12/03/12 – 12:49 | Comments Off

It was testing week in karate and, as usual, Big Guy was under the gun. Not as much as he used to be, when he didn’t have a clue and had to frantically cram, but …

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Food

Picky eaters and allergy-safe cooking — the two aren’t necessarily unrelated.

Girl Gone Wonk

From policy to politics, this rant’s for you.

News

The day’s events in a family way — unless something else amuses me.

School days

From preschool to kindergarten — so far

Simple Gifts

Inexpensive homemade gifts, creative parties and low-cost projects, for Christmas and beyond. Many are easy enough for children to help.

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How “overdraft” becomes “way the heck over” draft
Sunday, 20 Sep, 2009 – 22:39 | One Comment
How “overdraft” becomes “way the heck over” draft

So apparently I’m not the only one to have an inattentive lapse that amounted to a couple of dollars come back to bite me to the tune of triple-digits.
I’ll take full responsibility for one overdraft …

A SWAT for choosing Fluff over substance
Thursday, 17 Sep, 2009 – 22:21 | Comments Off
A SWAT for choosing Fluff over substance

Give Massachusetts Rep. Kathi-Anne Reinstein credit for persistence.
For three years now, she’s been a staunch defender of fluff – Marshmallow Fluff, that is. Apparently, it’s no joking matter in Massachusetts.
She led the opposition back in …

Watch that gmail account at work – someone else might want to watch too
Monday, 14 Sep, 2009 – 22:05 | Comments Off
Watch that gmail account at work – someone else might want to watch too

With the exception of the ever-dwindling numbers in the “I don’t use email” set, most of us know by now not to send personal messages from our work accounts.
Sure, we might slip once in a …

A SWAT to those who try to turn a sideshow into the main event
Thursday, 10 Sep, 2009 – 21:29 | Comments Off
A SWAT to those who try to turn a sideshow into the main event

I’m not going to pick on Joe Wilson.
The South Carolina congressman  earned the honors of poster boy of the week for Foot in Mouth Disease after his impolitc political outburst Wednesday during the president’s health …

A SWAT for raising a stink about body odor
Thursday, 3 Sep, 2009 – 22:03 | Comments Off
A SWAT for raising a stink about body odor

It must be tough these days in paradise, what with the economy being what it is and the hit that’s caused in Hawaii’s tourism industry.
And the natural human reaction when things are spinning out of …

See, mom? Video games ARE good for me!
Tuesday, 1 Sep, 2009 – 21:35 | Comments Off
See, mom? Video games ARE good for me!

Turns out that all those hours I spent at my brother’s house staring goggle-eyed at a screen, cursing the little blocks that wouldn’t fall into place weren’t a waste of vacation time at all.
In fact, …

Let Dugard find her way in peace
Saturday, 29 Aug, 2009 – 9:31 | One Comment
Let Dugard find her way in peace

Big Guy bristled when I refused to let him out of my line of vision yesterday evening at the PX, when he went to fetch to pile of pepper he has to have on his …

A SWAT for letting the big company skate
Thursday, 27 Aug, 2009 – 22:18 | Comments Off
A SWAT for letting the big company skate

Remember the big toy recall of two summers ago,when everything from Thomas trains to Dora campers disappeared from retailers’ shelves as plaything after plaything was recalled for violating lead standards?
Remember Congress’ uncharacteristic haste in the …

Sure, teens text. But not nearly “everyone” yet
Wednesday, 26 Aug, 2009 – 22:04 | 2 Comments
Sure, teens text. But not nearly “everyone” yet

Has your teen been on your tail for unlimited texting because “everyone” is doing it?
Au contraire, you can say. Only 38 percent of your friends text daily. In fact, you can add, 42 percent have …

If multitasking harms us, I’m mortally wounded
Tuesday, 25 Aug, 2009 – 21:10 | 4 Comments
If multitasking harms us, I’m mortally wounded

Think you’re doing more because  you’re doing more at once?
Think again. If you can. You might not be able to if a new study is right when it contends that multitaskers are actually worse at …

Net commerce not quite ready for prime time
Saturday, 22 Aug, 2009 – 9:31 | Comments Off
Net commerce not quite ready for prime time

A newspaper video goes viral after FOX news links to it, but the video quickly becomes inaccessible when a contractor can’t handle the traffic. The contractor adjusts within an hour, but that’s 60 minutes that …

A SWAT for the jobless and the clueless
Thursday, 20 Aug, 2009 – 22:21 | Comments Off
A SWAT for the jobless and the clueless

As Trina Thompson sees it, any reasonable employer would pounce on an applicant with her academic credentials, which include a 2.7 grade-point average.
Much to Thompson’s dismay no one’s pouncing, and when she was still unemployed …

In the right WiFi place at the right time – sort of
Wednesday, 29 Jul, 2009 – 0:29 | Comments Off
In the right WiFi place at the right time – sort of

Usually, I buy the car and someone offers zero percent financing two weeks later. Or I order the computer only to have someone wave free printers and cameras at me the next day.
Oh, but not …

Let him eat cake – from the Vietnam War
Friday, 24 Jul, 2009 – 21:47 | Comments Off
Let him eat cake – from the Vietnam War

So there I was last month, stressing until 2 in the morning over Dad’s “welcome home” cake, worried that it would be ugly or dry or have the wrong color stars.
Silly, silly girl. If I’d …

A SWAT for trying to call a foul on the NBA’s age limit
Friday, 24 Jul, 2009 – 0:06 | Comments Off
A SWAT for trying to call a foul on the NBA’s age limit

Note to Tennessee Rep. Steven Cohen: Kobe Bryant comes along only once in a generation. Except when LeBron James comes along seven years later. But by and large, the average teen-ager  isn’t ready to leap …

Everybody just get off Regina Benjamin’s back
Thursday, 23 Jul, 2009 – 0:27 | 2 Comments
Everybody just get off Regina Benjamin’s back

Why is it that President Barack Obama can’t nominate a woman – particularly a woman of color – for anything without someone creating a big hoo-ha over nothing?
First we had to debate Supreme Court nominee …

Take me out to the ballgame – if you have proper DNA verification
Wednesday, 22 Jul, 2009 – 0:43 | Comments Off
Take me out to the ballgame – if you have proper DNA verification

Funny how baseball got serious about trying to verify Latin American player’s ages when the players started coming out ahead.
And funny how the solution – genetic testings – would again exploit teen-agers not literate in …

If a general can blog, so can a CEO
Tuesday, 21 Jul, 2009 – 0:21 | Comments Off
If a general can blog, so can a CEO

The question posted in March was as simple as it was audacious: What’s the stupidest rule you’ve seen in the Army?
It drew 93 responses.
One soldier wanted to know why sweaty clothes weren’t allowed in the …

Come on, have some more F-22s! You know you’re hungry
Monday, 20 Jul, 2009 – 0:33 | Comments Off
Come on, have some more F-22s! You know you’re hungry

Have you ever had dinner in a genuine Italian mama’s kitchen?
The food keeps coming. Pasta and cheeses and peppers and desserts and wine. And then some more. You’ll try to wave her off and push …

The lemonade stand: Entrepreneurs or rogue outlaws?
Saturday, 18 Jul, 2009 – 21:58 | Comments Off
The lemonade stand: Entrepreneurs or rogue outlaws?

Take one busy-body neighbor, add a gallon of overzealous law enforcement, stir and what do you get?
If you live in a Philadelphia suburb, you wind up with seven kids threatened with charges for selling without …

A SWAT for parents seeing dollar signs in the sewer
Thursday, 16 Jul, 2009 – 22:21 | Comments Off
A SWAT for parents seeing dollar signs in the sewer

In this era of texting-happy teens, it was only a matter of when, not if, someone would take a tumble while messaging on a walk – apparently there are no laws against that yet.
So it’s …

A SWAT for trying to hit workers when they’re down
Thursday, 9 Jul, 2009 – 22:44 | 2 Comments
A SWAT for trying to hit workers when they’re down

It’s the most obvious promotion on Earth for business in a capital city, so of course Sacramento businesses quickly decided to offer state workers discounts on their “furlough Fridays” – their mandatory unpaid time off …

Hey, granny! You’re going to die!
Wednesday, 8 Jul, 2009 – 22:55 | 2 Comments
Hey, granny! You’re going to die!

I’ve been bored a few times in my life – bored enough at one point to play quarter bounce with coffee at 6 a.m. with a bunch of other people too bored and brain dead …

Don’t like pizza dancers? SWAT them away
Friday, 3 Jul, 2009 – 11:33 | 2 Comments
Don’t like pizza dancers? SWAT them away

It’s probably a stretch to call pizza dancing an art form, though at least one national chain holds a competition to recognize the company’s best at twirling the board.
It’s also a stretch to call people …

Road tax idea would have Uncle Sam riding shotgun
Thursday, 2 Jul, 2009 – 0:13 | 2 Comments
Road tax idea would have Uncle Sam riding shotgun

Good news for conspiracy theorists: The government might not need its fleet of black helicopters for much longer. Isn’t it nice to see possibilities for economizing in this budget climate?
If a study under way at …

Notion of banning links misses a link in why readers go online
Sunday, 28 Jun, 2009 – 23:03 | Comments Off
Notion of banning links misses a link in why readers go online

In about an hour each morning, I can browse five newspapers – two national, two state and one local – without killing a single tree.
When I’m finished with that, I survey a dozen or so …

Yes, Jenny Sanford, you will survive
Saturday, 27 Jun, 2009 – 9:11 | 2 Comments
Yes, Jenny Sanford, you will survive

What kind of dolt, having been caught in an adulterous affair after he leaves a love letter to his mistress lying around, returns to the scene of the crime six months later?
A dolt like South …

Password policy more prurient than practical
Sunday, 21 Jun, 2009 – 22:45 | One Comment
Password policy more prurient than practical

Credit reports, criminal history, references and past employment: All valid information for a potential employer, though credit reports aren’t relevant in all instances.
Anything the employer can turn up online about an applicant: Fair game. It’s …