Hump Day Open Thread

As expected, Sen. Hillary Clinton and Sen. Barack Obama each took a state in last night’s primaries, according to CNN.

CPSC Warning on Open Windows: Now that we are enjoying warm weather, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has issued a statement warning parents of the dangers of leaving the windows open — even with screens. According to the CPSC, 18 children fell out of windows last month, including two who died.

ATTN Madonna Fans: The Material Girl, who turns 50 in August, gave an interview to Vanity Fair, revealing all, including her adoption in Malawi, motherhood in general, Kabbalah and her new album, Hard Candy. No mention of the rumors that her and long-time husband Guy Ritchie are headed towards splitsville.

Running News: Double amputee sprinter Oscar Pistorius is poised to head to the Beijing Olympics now that an international appeals court ruled that his blade prosthetic legs are indistinguishable from human legs, according to the Washington Post. Pistorius, who was born without fibulas, had his legs amputated before his first birthday.

What else is in the news? What’s up with you?

34 thoughts on “Hump Day Open Thread

  1. DD’s political awakening

    As we were getting ready for the bus, DD heard them talking about Barack Obama on NPR, and said,
    “Rock Obama’s going to win?”

    “Yes,” I replied.

    “Doggone it!” she said.

    “But Hillary Clinton will make a better President!” she declared.  “Why isn’t she winning?”

    “I think her campaign would like to know that too. In the end, there are two very good candidates, and more people voted for Obama,” I replied.

    “It’s not fair that the man wins,” grumbled my budding feminist. Then she went on to mutter something I couldn’t quite follow about what a good President she’ll be when she grows up. :-)

    “A woman will be President someday, and soon,” I promised. “I think Barack Obama will make a very good President.”

    I debated with myself about telling her how historic it was that a black man was going to be the Democratic nominee. She seems completely unaware that that’s even an issue. I decided to leave it that way, for now, and enjoy it.

    • How cute!

      Rory’s only 2, but when her Nana called during our Cheers and Jeers ritual yesterday and asked how things were, she replied, “Go-Bama, Go-Bama.”

      My heart swelled.

      • Little supporters

        DS loves to shout “Obama.”  I swear he got it off the news, and I know it’s probably just an easy word for a toddler to say, but Obama is our guy, so it’s appropriate for us. It also drives the Repubs in our family crazy.  DH’s uncle’s girlfriend was trying to get DS to say “McCain,” and DS kept saying “No.”  I love the kid!

      • Iraq Obama

        My boys get all their news from NPR in the car.  They’ve merged Iraq and Barack Obama into Iraq Obama.

        During the repub primaries it took me a long time to figure out why my son was always asking about McHuckabee and McGuilliani.  It turned out he’d misheard Mitt Romney as McRomney, and putting that together with McCain he reached the conclusion that Mc was a title – like Dr or Mr – that meant republican.

    • Rock Obamama

      We’ve got some “Rock Obamama” going on in our house. And the other candidate is offcially named “Hillary-who-doesn’t-wear-glasses-Hillary”. See, as far as Jess is concerned, Our Hillary (Miles and Elias’ mom) is the first Hillary, ever since last year’s dinner chez Hill. When I pointed out Hillary Clinton to Jess, I got the “Gee, you’re dumb, Mummy” face and she said “Dat’s not Hillary.” We went back and forth a few minutes over whether this is actually Hillary, and she finally ended it by saying “Dat’s Not Hillary, Hillary Eliyyyyyas  Mummy. She’s got glaaaaasses, Mummy.” Hence the name. Alternatively, she’s “Hillary-who’s-not-Elias-and-Miles-Mummy.”

    • Presidents and presents…

      DD (3 1/2) keeps getting the words President and present confused.  We were watching an Obama speech and when she asked who he was I said the person I hoped would be President.  

      She got a very worried look on her face and asked why he would live in a box like a present and said that we really should have him come live with us until his house was ready!  

      A few days later the mailman buzzed for a delivery and DD got all excited that the mailman was delivering Obama to stay with us.  

      How have people explained the role of President to younger kids?

      • My friend

        who grew up in England thought Reagan was king of America.  I guess he didn’t know about PMs? I knew there wasn’t a king in America like there was in Thailand, but I couldn’t figure out what the president did.

        • The White House

          My parents eloped and got married in this white house in Ann Arbor – basically a dump:-) that they lived in with their friends.  

          I always heard about that when I was little and remember telling my class in Kindergarten show-n-tell that my parents got married in the White House with the President.  It led to a slightly confusing conversation between my Mom and teacher!

  2. Go Pistorius !

    I’m so thrilled for this guy!

    Also, at Children’s we met a little kid who had a heart condition…he got dizzy and short of breath and fell out a 2nd story window, so he was getting a cracked skull repaired.

    Sheesh.

  3. Shower gift ideas needed

    My sister is having Baby #1 this August and I want to get her a really nice baby book for her upcoming shower.  

    I plan to look around and see what’s out there but wondered what suggestions you all had?  (She’s not a big scrapbooker so I’m thinking more along the lines of one of the fill in the blanks books that record memories, etc of the first year).

    • Check this out

      http://www.iseeme.com.  Personalized books, company was created by a local mom. They’re beautiful keepsakes, as well as great for kids learning about animals or flowers (depending on which theme you pick) and how to spell their names.  The books have been popular gifts with our friends & family.

  4. DS got his white belt yesterday!

    My 10yo DS started TKD on April 2 and he just earned his first belt – a white belt- yesterday.  He is very proud of himself, and it’s amazing to watch our seemingly non-athletic child actually get it. His brain and body are working together quite well. It feels so good to have finally found him an extracurricular activity we all enjoy.

    Speaking of extracurricular activities, we’re continuing to be frustrated with Cub Scouts.  On Saturday DS was supposed to attend the Scout-o-Rama which is an enormous outdoor event held every spring. His pack had a booth and he was supposed to work a shift.  That morning, I couldn’t find his uniform shorts and I lost it. His room, and our house, is so cluttered I can’t find anything anymore and it’s very stressful for all involved.  I yelled at him to help me look for the shorts, but he was spacing out and not helping. I yelled at him that he had made a commitment to work the booth and he needed to get dressed.  He replied, “I didn’t make the commitment, YOU made the commitment.”  Touche.  We didn’t go to the event.  I finally found the shorts on Tuesday.

    TKD teaches the students not to quit things, so he’s really torn about whether we should continue in scouting until he finishes Webelos which would be March 2009.  I want him to quit this June, to save our family the stress of another 9 months of this oppressive, stagnating organization.  But DS is so torn about the whole quitting thing. He barely wants to be in it but he can’t stomach the imagined label of “quitter.”  There are two required elements coming up – a unit on religion and a major campout with dads & sons and I can’t see us finding enthusiasm for either.

    On a positive note, DS went 7 months at school (he started a new school in September because the highly gifted program starts in 4th grade) with no friends and worse – a bully who tormented him during recess.  He finally made some friends this month- two boys who are in his class.  He’ll be with the same classmates through 6th grade so this is a good thing.  Now I have to figure out how to invite them over for some hang-out time (can’t call them play dates, oh no).

    • congrats

      Aw, congrats to both of your sons for their accomplishments.

      On the quitting thing, doing Scouts until March 2009 just to not be a quitter sure sounds like a long sentence.  Quitting is not always a bad thing.  Sometimes it is a wise decision, especially if your time can be better used somewhere else.

      On the TKD, what is a good age to start a kid in that in your opinion?  I’ve known kids who started too young and it didn’t go too well.

      • The age would depend on the school

        My son’s TKD school starts kids at the “PeeWee” level for age 3-5 years.  My personal feeling is neither of my kids would have been ready for something like this until age 6.  My 7yo DD is ready but she has such an active social life, she is often on playdates during the time I take DS to class.

        There is no apparent disadvantage to starting a child at age 10.  He will progress by getting a new color belt every couple of months for the first year, and should have his black belt right around the time puberty hits. LOL

        Oh, and my rambly post was all about the same 10yo son.  He had a rough start this year so I’m relieved concerns such as his nonexistent social life and a lack of gross motor skills are being addressed, finally.

        After 4 full years of nearly constant volunteering, I am so done with Cub Scouts.  I organized the pack’s popcorn fundraiser 3 years in a row and nobody has offered to take it over for Fall 2008.  It’s one of those organizations where there are 30 families but the same 5 volunteer parents do all of the work.  I’m so done.  Combine that overwhelmed feeling with the pressure (and expense) of the upcoming requirements and I can see June would be a much better time to leave gracefully.  We’ll see.

        • Thanks

          I’ve known people that did that Pee-Wee level and it didn’t go too well.  6 or 7 is probably the best age to start a lot of things!  It’s also not inexpensive (at least around here).

          Sorry, I thought you were talking about two different sons for some reason.  That’s great, it sounds like all sorts of things are coming together for him now!

          Good luck sorting out the Cub Scouts situation.  It is hard quitting things, but sometimes it can feel so good. You kind of have to quit Scouts at some point I guess, unless you want to be an Eagle Scout.  I guess the trick is finding the right time to bow out gracefully as you said!

  5. weird moment

    I am reporting on an event Friday with the First Lady (she and Jenna wrote a children’s book).

    I just got a call from the Secret Service wanting to verify my full legal name for security screening purposes. I had already sent in my DOB and Social Security number. He said, “One more thing: what race are you?”

    My very first instinct was to say “None of your business!” but because it was the Secret Service I felt compelled to answer. After a long pause, I said, “Latino?” I don’t know why it came out sounding like a question. Maybe because I was thinking, “Why are you asking me this?”

    I was taken aback but if I had my wits about me I would have asked him why he needed that info. I’m still wondering…

    • and…

      …I don’t even know if I answered the question correctly, since “Latino” isn’t a race but an ethnicity. Technichally, I’m Caucasian…I think.

      OK, now I’m even more confused…and this only muddled things further…

      • Race, again

        According to the Census, Latino isn’t a race, but the Secret Service guy could have corrected and re-asked you if they care so much about the OMB race/ethnic standards.

        I agree, I don’t understand why they were asking you that.  The only thing that crept into my mind was, is that a roundabout way of asking what you look like to make sure the “right” person is approaching the first lady and not an impostor?  If so though they could just ask your height and hair color and skin color, or something.

        • photographic backdrop

          Will there be photos taken of the event?  Because they need a certain percentage of brown skin to compose the background in a photo-op.  You’ll be a disappointment if you appear caucasian.

      • Ok…I’ll ask you.

        My son’s fiance is Dominican.  Her parents were both born in the Dominican Republic.  They speak Spanish.  There are branches of the family that speak French, as well…not surprising since they’re next door to Haiti. Racially, they are very mixed, I suppose.  They are considered Hispanic, but, would she be a Latina?

        • totally up to her

          I would consider her a Latina (and so would the Census) since her parents were born in a Spanish-speaking country. But some people prefer Hispanic, some would prefer to be called Dominican. I have even heard the term Afro-Latino used by people who have both African and Latino ancestry. That racial mix is common in the DR, in Cuba, in Brazil and Colombia, among others.

    • I had a run-in with Secret Service

      when I went to see Obama.  We got there quite early as I could never have managed a line.  When we reached the building from the parking lot, there was a police officer outside the door telling everyone that food or drinks would not be allowed, except if medically necessary.  Well, because fluid is a medical necessity for me, I held on to my nearly full bottle of Diet Coke.  I walked in to go through the medal detector.  The security guard overseeing this told me again about drinks not being allowed.  I told her that it was a medical necessity.  She let me go through the detector with bottle in hand.  On the other side, I was directed to a Secret Service agent.  I explained again.  He asked about the medical condition, and I told him.  He sneeringly told me “well, you SHOULD be drinking something else, then.  Diet Coke is not the best choice for you!”  I said something about the caffeine being helpful, too, and went on my way….I generally don’t argue with people who might be armed.  After we were seated, my son told me that this same Secret Service agent came up to him and asked him if he “smoked much dope”.  WHAT????  My son said he thought he was being funny, that it was a joke, but I found it quite inappropriate.

      • wow

        The Secret Service: We haven’t changed since the Nixon Years. Yuck.

        As I’ve mentioned, my dad has worked his whole life with the mentally ill community, and worked 40 years with a non-profit organization in NYC. Over the years, he’s had tons of interactions with the Secret Service, because some of his clientele have, upon occasion, made threats against whatever president is around. So he’s got some funny ones. The one Secret Service story I like best happened in 1997 or 1998. Tipper Gore came to visit my dad’s organization as part of her mental health advocacy. Naturally, the Secret Service came and did a tour before. One of the clients, a paranoid schitzophrenic, had lifelong delusions that the Secret Service were following him. Naturally, with the SS in the building, my dad was somewhat concerned about this guy, so he tracks him down. Lo and behold, the guy is absolutely ecstatic, delighted happy. My dad goes, “X, you’re rather cheerful today. Do you know the Secret Service is here?” The guy says,”Yeah, I know. I told you guys that the Secret Service is following me, and all this time you SOBs have been telliing me that I’m crazy!”

  6. heads exploding on Christian radio

    Apparently a big hoo-hah at the Southern Baptist Convention released a statement recently stating that, although we can’t be certain why global warming is occurring, we must concede that the climate is indeed changing, and the Christian thing to do is take action.

    They had some guy on from the Christian Research Institute (send money, please!) who was shocked, shocked I tell you, to hear about this statement, because last summer the SBC released a statement saying they weren’t sure global warming was caused by humans.  How that pertains to the latest statement, I’m not sure, because cause was not brought up.  But if you send in your gift today, they will send you not only today’s broadcast, but yesterday’s too — and maybe that would clear things up.

    This scientist (Dr. Jay Richards) went on to argue that 1) there’s no such thing as global warming because the polar bears are NOT becoming extinct and the picture Al Gore uses was taken in July or August and of course polar bears are not at their best at that time of year.  Or something.  And 2) if we spend money to remediate global warming (which does not exist) by reducing carbon emissions, bad things will happen such as 1) Al Gore might make money off it, because he is involved with organizations who facilitate exchange of carbon credits, and 2) the money that would be used in retrofitting or whatever would be better spent preventing malaria in Africa.  Oh, and recycling?  It’s often not cost-effective.  So really, each time you think of recycling, ask yourself, “Is it worth it?”

    I think the whole broadcast was underwritten by the Carlyle Group.  Or maybe Exxon.

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