Aug. 30th, 2011

2 posts in one day!

Its like there's some kind of crazy procrastination thing going on, as if I had something else I should be working on and choose instead to blog about random things... oh. Yeah. That would be my overdue submission for crit group. Hahaha.
I have an assignment, late-given though it was, at least. How did the Captain of the boat meet her Magician? I envision their partnership heavily influenced by the Aubrey-Maturin partnership in Patrick O'Brian's books. (With which I am absolutely obsessed currently. They alternately make me choke up with emotion and crack up with hilarity, with some moments of confusion and mundanity between.)

However! In addition to the randomness of my writing assignment, we are also in the middle of a super-fun record-setting drought here in East Texas. And after temperatures so high for a few days that raw foodists couldn't have eaten a damn thing outside without a special dispensation, we're finally, maybe getting a break. Unfortunately the break comes in the form of scattered thunderstorms, which will tragically cause flash flooding rather than actually relieving the drought. Damn weather. Still, the lower temperatures (Highs only in the 90s! Heavens!) will be a great relief, and if the rain could just stretch out into near-constant gentle showers for six months straight, we might not lose all the trees in the damn county.

I love our trees!
IMG_2162

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Aug. 18th, 2010

Top 5 Lists: Round 1: Politicians

So, [profile] forg asked me for my Top 5 Politicians.  Gee, don't start me off easy or anything.  ;)

I am going to place a few limits on this list, just for clarity and also because otherwise I would have gone crazy. These are currently or recently active politicians, within the last decade at least. You know that if I'd opened this up to the dead, Cicero would go right to the top, right?  Anyhow...  With the caveat that every politician I've ever heard of has at one point or another done something to piss me off, here's a list for you:

#1: Senfronia Thompson, rocking the Texas House of Representatives since 1972. She is the longest-serving woman, and longest-serving African-American in the Texas Legislature. She has been fighting the good fight on behalf of women, children, the disenfranchised, working Texans, etc for a while, and is a pretty inspiring speaker. She famously gave a blistering speech in opposition to the anti-same-sex marriage amendment, denouncing the measure as bigotry. You tell 'em, Senfronia!

The next two aren't really ranked one over the other. They are connected, and both are pretty cool.
#2: Antanas Mockus, mayor of Bogotá, twice - once 1995-1997 and once 2001-2003.
#3: Enrique Peñalosa, mayor of Bogotá, 1998-2001.
These two mayors were part of a tremendous change in urban living in Bogotá, and used creative and ground-breaking techniques to improve the city for all its residents.  They improved public safety, infrastructure, and traffic efficiency. Peñalosa was interviewed in Ode Magazine about the changes wrought in Bogotá and his work on city planning after his term in office.  (Both Peñalosa and Mockus considered a run for president. Mockus ran this year to a runoff with the eventual victor.) Mockus was a guest speaker at the DeLange Conference here on Rice campus when the topic was Transforming the Metropolis: Creating Sustainable and Humane Cities.

#4: Dennis Kucinich, the only presidential candidate I ever felt was worth my wholehearted support. He currently serves in the House of Representatives for Ohio and continues to be one of the few leaders in that body who show consistent integrity in their decisions.

#5: Barbara Boxer, serving in the Senate for California. She has a good record on many issues close to my heart.

Now that I've closed up the five, I just want to make another shout-out to Senfronia Thompson, because she is just that awesome.  Yay!

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