Posts Tagged ‘Wizard of Oz’

When the news first broke that we’d been spying on some of our closest allies, Grandpa Hudson immediately nailed our collective indignation with this remark, “Skullduggery!” Don’t you just love obtuse and ancient words? I knew immediately I’d have to dig into this Halloween-themed noun which according to the Slang Dictionary comes from an earlier Scottish term, “skullduddery” and means: “deceitful doings; dirty work. :  Without skullduggery, politics wouldn’t be interesting.”

So if the NSA was involved in “tricky behavior” of the “hanky-panky” variety, and we now learn that well, really, everybody’s doing it, spying on each other that is, we can all rest assured that the Bourne  or for that matter, Bond movie machine will live on in perpetuity. I’m just not so sure I can recover from my binge watching yesterday morning of CNN and the public spectacle aka witch’s hunt we now call a “congressional hearing.”

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius held up rather well under her grueling three+ hours of testimony. Here are some of the low-lights I gleaned from yesterday’s “monkey business.”

A Texas Representative, R- Joe Barton, likened the roll out of the Affordable Care Act to a scene in another classic movie, The Wizard of Oz. Maybe he thought of this because Sebelius had served as the Governor of Kansas or maybe he just likes “hanky-panky.”

“Dorothy at some point in the movie turns to her little dog Toto and says, ‘Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore.’ Well, Madam Secretary, while you’re from Kansas, we’re not in Kansas anymore. Some might say that we are actually in the ‘Wizard of Oz’ land given the parallel universes we appear to be habitating.”

Another GOP gambit was trying to get Madame Secretary to tell us which health policies covered abortion. A hot mic caught another congresswoman say in a plaintive voice, “Oh, here we go again.” While a NC woman of the right got into a bit of “kerfluffle” over whether single young men should have to buy insurance with maternity coverage saying, “To the best of your knowledge, has a man ever delivered a baby?”

There was more posturing, and posters of college boys doing a keg stand, I’m not sure why; oh yes this “chicanery” lasted well into the lunch hour. Which got me thinking about Niccolo Machiavelli.

“It ought to be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things. Because the innovator has for enemies all those who have done well under the old conditions, and lukewarm defenders in those who may do well under the new.”

Happy Halloween from one parallel universe to another. I’ll close with a bit of “funny business” from my little trick or treater who adores going to puppet shows in her pachyderm costume! ps the nose is on the hood in back but don’t you just love the Pebbles pony?


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We all know that scene in The Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy looks at Toto and says “I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.” Well, late Friday afternoon, when the temperature had peaked at 108, I had a feeling my house might just be blown off its foundation and end up in Kansas!

Gov McDonnell declared a state of emergency for VA after a series of violent “boundary” thunderstorms ripped through these parts leaving 6 people dead; 2 in our county were struck by trees. Bob was putting a foot in the hot tub when he looked up and decided to come inside. Usually, he likes to sit on the deck and watch a storm cross over the mountain range, so this was unusual. We lost power but our trusty generator switched right on, then we lost our Dish satellite and only had news via the Weather Channel on my iPhone. Oh, and we lost our land lines too. Then it got very, very dark and our windows, the shiny, beautiful clean windows I’d just washed for the party, were being pummeled by what, hail?

When you are married to an ER doctor, you get used to a certain laissez faire. Unless you are dying, nothing much can bother him. “HA, I was right, you have Zoster!” he might say smiling. Or, “It’s only a GI bug, you’ll feel better tomorrow.” When I ran in with a limp child after falling off a bike, and he said call the ambulance, I knew it was serious. So Friday night, when he put on his work boots, started gathering flashlights and opening windows, I have to admit, I started to panic just a little. First he’s not on the deck watching the storm, second he came in from his beloved hot tub, and third, he NEVER opens windows, but he said he wanted to equalize the pressure. That unbearable heat was being whipped up by a cold wind, a wind that hit straight-line gusts of over 80 MPH while the lightening played out over our Blue Ridge mountain range like some evil horror show.

What do you do in a disaster? Some people were made for these things, ER docs, firefighters, pilots, medics. It’s in their DNA. They are the opposite of risk-averse, they are risk-in-love. I asked Bob what he would have done on that Italian cruise ship that went aground recently, would he have started climbing up? Of course, he would not have listened to the officers telling people to go back to their cabins. It made me think of one of the Flapper’s famous sayings, “Signs are for sheep.” Yesterday morning he was doing his chain saw buzzing best all over our driveway, we had 3 trees down.
Then when we went to Starbucks for a break, they had no milk. He went over to the only other open store in the whole shopping center, bought milk and half and half, and gave it to the baristas. People were wandering around like zombies, trying to find a cool shelter, trying to find relief from the massive power outages. “Do you know if they have any hamburger in there?” one nervous woman asked me while we walked to the car. I started to tell her they have milk, but no yogurt, and saw in her eyes she didn’t care. She was after meat.

I felt like I was in an episode of Doomsday Preppers! Later, on Bob’s 3 to 11 shift, the ER treated over 100 patients, many with heat exhaustion. We have 2.5 million people without power in the state. “This was the largest non-hurricane power outage in Virginia history,” McDonnell said. And the fifth highest ever in state history. Well people, it’s July 1st, please try and stay out of emergency rooms. You know why, right? All the new ER interns are starting fresh out of medical school. They just got their long white coats and are still learning how to write a prescription. But if you do find yourself on a gurney, give ’em a break and try to be a patient patient. Hum “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”

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