Monday Morning Open Thread: Keep Resisting!

Maybe it’s just me, but… the present social moment reminds me of the Anita Hill – Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings. All the nice white men (and some women!) shook their heads and said Not my mother! My wife! My daughters! Nobody would dare treat my women like that!

And then ‘their’ women told them the stories they hadn’t been able to share, because they needed that job and all the girls expected to be treated like that and what good would it have done to complain?

Or ‘their’ women just looked away, because really, what could they say?

That didn’t stop Justice Thomas’ confirmation, of course, but it did — as the expression was — change the conversation. Suddenly sexual harassment was a real problem, not just a smutty joke.

Let’s be the snowflakes that start the avalanche…

From a BJ commentor. Dogs know which people can be trusted:

Make It Stop! (Open Thread)

My dogs hate ice cream trucks. They cannot abide the tinkling, high-pitched songs played over the loudspeakers. As pups, they used to howl, but now they just frown. (Sometimes we howl when the ice cream truck is near to try to get the dogs to join in, but it never works.)

Daisy Mayhem, pictured above, was never a patient creature. But now that she’s becoming a grizzled old dog, she has a very short fuse. Yesterday evening, I thought she was going to fling herself over the fence, find that truck and sink her fangs into its tape deck (I imagine it is an old, shitty tape deck to match the old, shitty vehicle).

Anyhoo, I recognize that look in her eyes. I’ve seen it in the mirror. Make. It. Stop.

Captain Obvious observation: there’s much hypocritical conservative butt-hurt across the land over insinuations that Trump isn’t legitimate, isn’t a good person or that his upcoming Ultimate Ego Gratification Event (UEGE) should be boycotted. Even 1970s crooner Tony Orlando got in on the act!

I’m afraid the SS “Embarrassing to the World” sailed 11/9, Mr. Orlando, so tie a yellow ribbon ’round your big fat yap. Orlando is performing at one of the inaugural balls sans backup singers, so there will be no opportunity for Der Gropenfuhrer to be found fumbling at the crack of Dawn (yes, I went there…sorry).

WaPo has an article up about the blow-back groups and individuals are getting for attending the UEGE — including the Girl Scouts. From quotes in that piece and exchanges I’ve seen elsewhere, it seems the reaction of non-Trump supporters to the UEGE falls into at least two categories: those who view participation as validation of the “peaceful transfer of power” and those who see it as normalizing Trump.

Personally, I see it as the latter, and I wish each and every Democrat and/or person who values decency and American self-determination would decline to participate in or watch the proceedings. But I’m not going to harsh on people who feel obligated to attend, such as the Clintons. Sitting through that travesty will be hell enough.

While reading the article, I was struck by the comment of a talk radio host and parent who objected to an email sent by his kid’s teacher, in which the teacher conveyed his decision to allow the class to watch the swearing-in on TV but not the speech:

Radio host Steve Gruber took issue with the email, telling the Free Press, “He has an opportunity to demonstrate that even when you lose, you come together for peaceful transfer of power. The message to 10-year-olds in his class is that the president is a bad man, and that’s not acceptable.”

I remember being angry when a Sarah Palin knock-off on our local school board refused to allow public schools in my district to air an address to the kids from President Obama because socialism! But the thing is, Mr. Gruber, Trump is a bad man. Let’s not pretend otherwise. Hypocrisy sets a bad example for the children.

Open thread!


Bixby and Bailey looking like they’ve stuffed one of the cats in the toy box and are trying to hide it. Bailey had her first nail trim and a weigh-in this week. She’s 109 lbs. That’s up 17 lbs since she arrived. She’s still skin and bones – just taller and broader. I had to loosen her collar last week and her head is beginning to broaden. There’s a full puppy update here.

We saw Sing yesterday and it was perfect escapism, which is how I’m coping these days. Complete denial.

Should I repost the Woman’s March meet-up thread, or has everyone already made their arrangements? I’m happy to do it if necessary.

There won’t be a recipe thread tonight (really was anyone expecting one, LOL) even though Adam taunted me with the this:

Conjuring memories of the much maligned KFC Double Down, Taco Bell’s latest spawn involves a curved piece of fried chicken serving as a veggie vessel.

Time to put your body through Bell.

Following two years of testing, Jan. 26 will see the nationwide release of the “naked chicken chalupa” — a new Taco Bell menu option that replaces the item’s traditional fried flatbread shell with fried chicken.

Just evil.

This is your mid-day open thread.

College Football National Championship (Open Thread)

Alabama vs. Clemson — the rematch. Should be a good game. Roll Tide, I guess.

More importantly, our dear Patsy Marie is recovering from minor surgery:

She’s okay. She’s a lumpy dog, and when lumps pop up, we have them removed (at great expense). Luckily, they’ve all been benign.

Poor thing is whiny and clingy. We took the Cone of Shame off. Considering putting it on the other dog!

Open thread!

Faunasphere: RIP Tilikum (and puppy mill dogs)

  • Note: The Caregiver’s Thread went pretty well, last time, so I’ll repeat it again tomorrow morning – probably at 11:00 a.m. Eastern. (Unless we get crowded out by breaking news.)

Sorry for the lack of recent Faunaspheres. I’d have to say that most vegans and animal rights activists are as bummed by the recent election as everyone else, so not a lot of action recently. But I’ve written here before of the tragic life of Tilikum, the orca who endured a terrible decades-long captivity in cruel conditions at SeaWorld, and was responsible for three human deaths (at least one of which SeaWorld tried to cover up, and the last of which they tried to pin on the trainer).

His death was announced yesterday. Despite all the “care” he supposedly got at SeaWorld, he was 36, well on the short end of what would have been his natural lifespan.

A drooping dorsal fin, bite scars from hostile orcas he had been caged with when young, and ruined teeth from chewing on his enclosures testified to his decades of mental and physical misery.

His story was immortalized in Blackfish, which is streaming on Netflix and Amazon.

RIP poor Tilikum. I hope you’re finally swimming free with your pod.

Also, ICYMI, Rolling Stone just published an amazing expose of evil puppy mills. (Warning–the text and photos are both hard to take.) I won’t quote it because I know many of you are already familiar with (and properly enraged by) the issues. (But please read it!) But notice this: “We have millions of dogs on our streets, put down two million of them every year – and impose no limits on the number of dogs millers can breed. In England, by contrast, you need a license to breed even a single dog – and only 5,000 were euthanized in 2015.”

What do Tilikum’s story and the puppy mill story have in common? The degradation of animal “husbandry.” Tilikum was valuable as a breeding stud–the movie shows the trainers masturbating him and collecting the semen, which SeaWorld sold–and so are the puppy mill dogs. (Until they’re not, when they’re pretty much discarded.) He and the dogs suffered because their breeders treated them the way we treat most “useful” animals (cows, pigs, etc.)–stuck in tiny cages, given just enough care to serve our purposes but never enough for them to have decent lives.

Captivity sucks.

There has been good news:

Last year, SeaWorld bowed to decades of pressure and announced that it would no longer breed orcas and would phase out orca performances. (Virtual reality is cheaper / easier than maintaining live orcas, anyway!) In the meantime, many other orcas remained enslaved in the “entertainment industry.”

Also, this year Boston joined more than 120 other municipalities to ban pet stores from selling commercially-bred dogs.

Although many poor dogs remain stuck in mills.

(And, just to remind you: the good folks at TripAdvisor said they would remove many “animal attractions” from the site’s listings.)

Early Afternoon Open Thread

It’s freezing outside, so there’s a flurry of activity here at the Cole stronghold:

Lazy piglets.

Late Night Open Thread


Sitting here decrufting my notes-for-blog-posts files, my email folders, etc.

I’m tired of learning new information. I want to hit the pause button, just for a week. Or a month. Or…