Feelin' Genki

Thursday, August 30, 2007

If the only tool you have is a hammer...

I used to write about current events and politics on my blog before my life was taken over by parenthood. I still read voraciously and keep up on the news, but not so much posting.

But, some things need to be commented on.

Like, for instance, even more proof that the government of the United States (the Republican adminstration, to be specific) has been a bunch of lying, corrupt, weasels interested solely in their own profit, regardless of the cost to America (half a trillion dollars, 3000+ dead American soldiers), Iraq (half a million dead civilians, loss of stability, electricity, water, security...), the world (increase in world chaos, loss of American face), or themselves (loss of Congress, looming loss of the Senate and the Presidency).

Here's what General Wesley Clark, former head of the Joint Chiefs, said in a recent interview:

About ten days after 9/11, I went through the Pentagon and I saw Secretary Rumsfeld and Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz. I went downstairs just to say hello to some of the people on the Joint Staff who used to work for me, and one of the generals called me in. He said, “Sir, you’ve got to come in and talk to me a second.” I said, “Well, you’re too busy.” He said, “No, no.” He says, “We’ve made the decision we’re going to war with Iraq.” This was on or about the 20th of September. I said, “We’re going to war with Iraq? Why?” He said, “I don’t know.” He said, “I guess they don’t know what else to do.” So I said, “Well, did they find some information connecting Saddam to al-Qaeda?” He said, “No, no.” He says, “There’s nothing new that way. They just made the decision to go to war with Iraq.” He said, “I guess it’s like we don’t know what to do about terrorists, but we’ve got a good military and we can take down governments.” And he said, “I guess if the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem has to look like a nail.”

So I came back to see him a few weeks later, and by that time we were bombing in Afghanistan. I said, “Are we still going to war with Iraq?” And he said, “Oh, it’s worse than that.” He reached over on his desk. He picked up a piece of paper. And he said, “I just got this down from upstairs” -- meaning the Secretary of Defense’s office -- “today.” And he said, “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.” I said, “Is it classified?” He said, “Yes, sir.” I said, “Well, don’t show it to me.” And I saw him a year or so ago, and I said, “You remember that?” He said, “Sir, I didn’t show you that memo! I didn’t show it to you!”

There you have it. Grounds for impeachment. And charges of treason.


Jon Solz of VoteVets.org just wrote a great article on the embarrassing flameout of Bush's policy, and the military's lack of belief and trust in him in general. Read it here.

Milo is very verbal

Wow, it's been a while since I used this blog to rave about how smart my offspring is. Usually I'm crowing about how cute he is, but dammit, the boy is brilliant.

With my extensive background in developmental psychology and early childhood education, I know the benchmarks for children and Milo is a frakkin' Einstein.

He's starting to pretend and imagine, and tell us about it. For example, in the past two days he's said:

"Milo's a robot from outer space."

"I'm a lion! Rrraaarrr!"

"Milo's a troll... I'll eat you up!" (Conflating the story of The Three Billy Goats Gruff with Where the Wild Things Are.)

He's also starting to get a handle on language and making up words. When he was eating dinner the other day, I was giving him some rice balls to go with his soup (he likes his rice in ball form) and the sticky rice got all over my hands. Milo said: "Daddy's hands are ricey. Wash hands, Daddy."

Yup, "ricey." He's coined a word.

Just a few minutes later, he was finishing his ice cream and going for the melted remnants... "Yummy ice cream juice, Daddy!"

I'm calling it "ice cream juice" from now on too.

I know, he's a genius. Must be the genes.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Milo's weekend on Vancouver Island

Despite the hell that is BC Ferries, we made it to Gramma and Poppa's house for the August long weekend. And even though there were tons of things to do in Comox (the Filberg Festival, Comox Nautical Days...) we stayed home with the simple things, like the lawnmower.

By lawnmower, I mean tractor. And just look who had the bigger smile. To be fair, Milo's only not smiling because he's entranced. He got to steer too.

Out on the sandbars of Miracle Beach at low tide, the sand is too fine and wet to make good sand castles, but the geoducks (pronounced gooey-ducks, people) are an endless source of amusement. Man, those things can squirt in my eye, and I'm 6'5". They go right over Milo's head.

Crabs, anemones, little fish, sand dollars... what a great place to explore.

We did actually make it into town one day, so Gramma could run some errands. We stopped at Marina Park to wander around, and Milo went on his first carnival-type ride.

He looked even more uncertain than he did on the lawnmower, but the little girl beside him talked him down. And when he got off, the first thing he said was "again!"

Oh, important note: We had the best mini-donuts I've ever eaten that day. Screw the doughy, undercooked ones at the PNE, these ones were absolutely perfect.

So much for our weekend on the island. As Poppa said, we really need to spend more than a weekend. I guess we'll head over there again for Thanksgiving, and plan for a week next summer.

Back in Vancouver, we took advantage of the holiday Monday to head up Lynn Valley. The hike from the Cleveland Dam down to the salmon hatchery isn't long and you can walk in the woods while breathing all the fresh oxygen.

Of course, it went right to Milo's head and he just ran until his little legs couldn't take it anymore. Then Daddy got to carry him on his shoulders all the way back up.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Milo sees another Vancouver Canadians baseball game

This boy's gonna be a left-handed reliever. To that end, I've been making him throw with his left hand and he went to his first ball game when he was three weeks old. I don't remember much about the game other than I was terrified that a foul ball would hit him while he slept in his little basket.

This time, he knows what baseball is, he watches the game, and he was thrilled to be able to run around the stands, which were mostly protected by a layer of netting. Whew.

Okay, so he didn't pay attention to EVERY part of the game... he wanted to wear Daddy's hat for a while.

And he wanted to wear Mommy's sunglasses too.

This just made him more comfortable wearing his own shades, which can only be a good thing.

However, like the birthday party, too much excitement can wear a boy out. He ate almost a whole hot dog and then crashed.

At Mika's birthday party

It was everything you'd expect from a birthday party: kids running everywhere (upstairs, downstairs, and in the back yard), adults outnumbering children roughly two to one, treats, presents, and the main event -- cake!

Although Milo's really more into the ice cream part of it. Whenever he gets a bowl of it (which he does if it's a hot day, we don't need him to go to bed right away, and he ate a good dinner), he looks at it and says "Happy Birthday to Milo!"

As you'd expect from a two-year-old, the party wore him out. All the cake, kids, noise, and fun necessitated some quiet time with Mom, looking at Mika's collection of Milo's birthday party photos. Good times.