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f/k/a archives . . . real opinions & real haiku

May 6, 2006

menudo: second helpings

Filed under: pre-06-2006 — David Giacalone @ 1:08 am

Maybe I’ve had a little too much menudo e-soup today (tripe, hominy

and chili might tend to keep one up), or maybe I’m finding far too many

interesting things that I want to write about.  Whatever the cause, here’s

one more helping of weblog “small change” for the f/k/a faithful, as Cinco

de Mayo 2006 fades into history:


laptop in bed  30L Epiphany: An encounter today with the famous 3L web-

logger Ian Best of 3L Epiphany reminded me both that (a) thirty years ago

this week, I was “studying” for my 3L law exams and (b) it was a lot

harder back then for congenital procrastinators to practice their art. You

see, this morning, I finally got around to asking Ian to add f/k/a to his

list of legal ethics weblogs. [Yes, I, too, was shocked by its omission.]

About two seconds after I posted my Comment with the request, I got

an email from Ian saying “Thanks David!! I’ll add it as soon as I’m done

with exams.”


That got me thinking that Ian was obviously paying more attention to

his weblog than to his studying — looking for a reason to take a quick

study break.  Then, it hit me:

tiny check 30 years ago, you really had to work hard to find things to

occupy your time, other than actually studying for finals. 

No one — and especially no humble law student — had a

worldwide audience hanging on our next post, or Commenting

on our last one.  We didn’t have an entire internet of distractions

that could be found without even getting up from our desk or study


quill pen

The Lesson: Dear Younguns, back then ,successful procrastinators were made

of a much heartier stock.  And don’t you forget it (even as we start to get a wee

bit forgetful).


long winter —

prayer bundles sway

in the cedars


    The Heron’s Nest (Nov. 2004)



late night rain–

he reads to me from the book

I read to him


       Mayfly #40 (2005)


  Billie Wilson 


tiny check Really need exam help? see our



see orig. at This Modern World


Greg Saunders (of The Talent Show) had a nifty graphic and a few well-

chosen words aimed at the GOP last week at the This Modern World weblog,

in his posting “If you can’t earn a vote, buy it” (April 27, 2006)   Noting that

Sen./Dr. Frist had floated the notion that most American taxpayers would

get $100 rebate checks to offset the pain of higher pump prices for gasoline,

Greg wonders:

“Didn’t he learn anything from dating?  Desperation isn’t attractive.

It’s pathetic.”


For a less colorful, but more thorough, analysis see: NYT,  “$100 Rebate: the rise 

and fall of a GOP idea” (May 5, 2006)


embrace small  Robert Ambrogi, writing at Inside Opinions, summarized a

debate that I had missed this week: “Sex in Public. Need I Say More?”

(May 5, 2006).  Bob asks:

Riddle: What is almost as interesting but not quite as titillating as

sex in public?

Answer: Watching libertarian legal bloggers debate sex in public.

When you think about it, this is an intriguing and very complicated issue.

Check out Bob’s summary and one compiled at prettier than napolean.


good morning kiss

wing beats

of the hummingbird


         To Hear the Rain



quiet house–

the chess game

where we left it


 New Resonance 3; Haiku Light 2001



bainbridgePix  When Prof. Bainbridge is right, he’s right.  And, his is the only

reasonable response to the news: “Blazing Saddles Banned” (May 5, 2006)

A high school teacher had to apologize for showing the classic comedy/satire

to twelfth graders, after one parent complained about “racist language. Steve


“What really got me about the story, however, was the reporter’s

description of Blazing Saddles as a “racist film.” Nonsense. While

Blazing Saddles pervasively uses ethnic slurs and stereotypes, it

does so to lampoon racism. The worst thing you can do to bigots

is to laugh at them, which is precisely what Mel Brooks does in this

hysterical film.”

Here’s the plot summary for Blazing Saddles (1974) from

Tagline: Never give a saga an even break!


Plot Outline To ruin a western town, a corrupt political boss

appoints a black sheriff, who promptly becomes his most formidable


wind-beaten marquee

saying only

“Coming Soon”


        Some of the Silence 

Plot Synopsis: The Ultimate Western Spoof. A town where everyone seems

to be named Johnson is in the way of the railroad. In order to grab their land,

Hedley Lemar, a politically connected nasty person, sends in his henchmen to

make the town unlivable. After the sheriff is killed, the town demands a new

sheriff from the Governor. Hedley convinces him to send the town the first Black

sheriff in the west. Bart is a sophisticated urbanite who will have some difficulty

winning over the townspeople.

movie film sm

If there’s anything worse than kneejerk political correctness, it’s kneejerk policial cor-

rectness from people with no sense of humor (or is that redundant?).  What a stupid

lesson to teach your children: some words are always inappropriate, regardless of

context or intent.  Sure wouldn’t want to learn how to make discerning choices and

judgments.  Makes a guy want to turn in his Liberal Card.



sunny morning —
pink tulips in bloom
on the preschool’s walls





the wind storm moves on —
once more the songs of sparrows
in the pines



      Haiku Harvest  (Spring 2001) 



deskCalG   Maybe Evan Schaeffer could start a class action suit for me against

Office Max.  For quite a few years now, my brother and sister-in-law have put

together a CopyMax Calendar, featuring pictures of my niece Lissa and nephew 

James, and given them as Christmas gifts to lucky family members. 




    snap beans


The calendar is then hung in a place of honor in my kitchen as used as my primary

date-keeping wall calendar.  So, I rely on the dates that are designated as holidays

or special events on my CopyMax calendar.  Well, for the past couple of months,

I’ve been under the misperception that Mother’s Day is May 7th this year — because

said calendar says so.  It was only this week, when I was turning down an invitation

to a belated Cinco de Mayo dinner Sunday night, due to its “conflict” with Mother’s

Day, that I learned of my misplaced trust in CopyMax. This has caused lots of

mental anguish in my household, and I’m not the only Giacalone male who made

this mistake.  Indeed, I rushed out last week to purchase a Mother’s Day Card

to give Mama G, and was just about to mail it prematurely.   


spring breeze —
I teach my granddaughter


“tinyredcheck” So, in case you have a CopyMax Calendar for 2006, please let me

remind you that Mother’s Day 2006 falls on May 14th, not May 7th,

this year.  Of course, early is better than late, but there’s got to be

a lawsuit in here somewhere.  Right, Walter?

another argument unfolds the futon 


         W.F. Owen 

              A New Resonance 2


tiny check  One good thing about this situation:  I learned from online

research that U.K. has its own Mothering Day, which fell on March

26th this year.  It’s a good thing Mama G. lives in the USA.




The Schenectady Daily Gazette published an interesting article in a “special”

Spring Home section, on Friday (May 5, 2006; available by $ub.)  Luckily, I found

it on line to share with you: “Humble and Prolific Rambler is Becoming Retro Chic,”

(, Feb. 15, 2006)  The “rambler” style home is also called “ranch”

in some parts of the country.  I have just two quick points: (a) from an energy-

conservation perspective [see our prior post], it is great that these modest houses

(usually about 1000 sq. ft.) are making a comeback; one reason is their lower price

tags, and another is the fact that baby-boomers and their parents, as their knees

start to give out want homes that are all on one floor.

lifting the hammer
the old carpenter’s hand
stops shaking


    A New Resonance 2 ; Mayfly No. 30

her eyes narrow,

seeing for the first time

my little house


       John Stevenson


(b) from a Euphemism Police perspective, I am issuing a warrant for the Star Tribune

reporter, Darlene Prois, who described one couple who just bought a rambler as:

“Betty and Mike Lovejoy, empty-nesters in their early 70s.”

Sorry, Darlene, but an empty-nester is someone whose children have moved out 

and have their own places — not someone whose grandchildren just left for college

or bought ramblers of their own as starter houses.


Monday again–

folks in the latte line

praise this morning’s moon


          Mariposa 11 (2004)


same old argument–

she pulls silk

from the sweetcorn


     Mayfly #37 (2004)



hand prints upL


The news from Sudan and Darfur is cautiously optimistic tonight.The Guardian,

Government, Main Rebels Sign Peace Accord” (May 5, 2006)  We all need

to press our Government to re-triple its efforts to convince the two smaller rebel

groups to make a truce.  If you pray, some prayers for those who still suffer from

hunger, injury and fear in Darfur — and for those who will help bring and keep a

peace — are surely needed.  


their children

never cry

never stop crying




it is!   it isn’t!

genocide – –

just stop it  


afterthought (noon, May 6):  The morning news reminded me that

Sigmund Freud was born 150 years ago today.  (“150 years of Freud,”, May 5, 2006)  I’ll let others tell of his contribution to modern

medicine and culture, as the Father of Talk Therapy (we’re more into

“blawk” therapy around here).   My contribution to the Freud anniversary

is to quote a few lyrics from a song I was listening to a couple days ago,

by Warren Zevon, from the title cut of his greatest hits album Genius:


FreudBust sigmund freud, 1938

excerpt from “Genius

(Warren Zevon and Larry Klein)


. . .


Albert Einstein was a ladies’ man
While he was working on his universal plan
He was making out like Charlie Sheen
He was a genius


. . .


Everybody needs a place to stand
And a method for their schemes and scams
If I could only get my record clean
I’d be a genius


What’s the connection with Freud?  If you have to ask, you can’t

afford the therapy.




  1. Surely, you meant the procrastinators back then “were made of a much *hardier* stock” rather than heartier.

    … or so I was going to assume. Google is inconclusive. I find one Ghit for “heartier back then,” about 7 for “hardier back then,” and plenty of puns involving heart-healthy regimes, e.g. “hardier – and heartier – diets…”

    I think it’s possible that today’s procrastinators have Blackberrys that vibrate whenever an e-mail is received, which can happen when a blog comment is posted. So today’s procrastinators have a golden opportunity to be distracted by technology whenever anything at all happens. Which may prove your point.

    This is all turning into an entirely too Language Log-gy comment. Keep up the fine posting – I particularly enjoyed your story of How the East Was Integrated. Or rather, how a quota was removed. The bitter reality of the “there ain’t no opportunities for-” criticism is that until there’s a large pool of a given sort of applicant/ graduate, how would anyone know if there are opportunities?

    Comment by Eh Nonymous — May 9, 2006 @ 4:43 pm

  2. Hi, Eh,   My original intent “hardier or heartier” is impossible to say, given the CFS-brain-fog that I have been experiencing the past couple of weeks.  However, now that I see that “hearty” means “Complete or thorough” and “Vigorous; robust,” I think I’ll stay with “heartier”.
    You are surely correct that 21st Century procrastinators now have virtually unlimited opportunities — passive and active — for distractions. 
    As one of my favorite “Shoe” comic strips noted:  Procrastination may be the most effective labor-savings device ever invented. (And, yes, I am procrasting from writing my main post of the day, by responding to your Comment.)
    thanks for your constructive and kinds words.

    Comment by David Giacalone — May 9, 2006 @ 5:49 pm

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