Wednesday, June 1, 2005

Job Interview

"job interview, n.: The excruciating process during which personnel officers separate the wheat from the chaff -- then hire the chaff."

I saw this below my profile at slashdot.com and thought about how timely this comment is.
Posted by Emma Lathan on June 4, 2005 at 02:41:23 PM
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June 2, 2005

Room to Read Boston Event- Libby Koponen and Children Helping Children at Porter Square Books (Cambridge, MA)

Time: Sunday, June 12, 2005 3:00 PM
Place: Porter Square Books (www.portersquarebooks.com)
Address: 25 White Street, Cambridge, MA 02140


Join author Libby Koponen for an interactive discussion about Blow Out The Moon, her award-winning children’s book about the adventures an American girl who attends an English boarding school. Libby, who is a popular guest speaker at local elementary schools. Her presentations delight children and engage their imagination. Blow Out The Moon is the winner of the 2005 Massachusetts Honor Book Award for “outstanding achievement in children’s literature.” It was also chosen as one of the “100 Titles for Reading and Sharing 2004” by the New York Public Library.

There will also be a short presentation about the “children helping children” Read-a-Thon program sponsored by Room to Read.

Room to Read is an award-winning non-profit organization that has built over 1,550 libraries and 113 schools. Its mission is to help eradicate illiteracy across the developing world. Room to Read currently serves the following countries: Cambodia, Nepal, India, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, and Laos.

For more information about Room to Read, please visit www.roomtoread.org.
For more information concerning the "Libby Koponen and Children Helping Children
at Porter Square Books" event, please call 617-764-1145
(ask for Jamie)

Posted by Emma Lathan on June 2, 2005 at 09:33:36 PM
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May 5, 2005

The best sites ...

Find A Grave-It's just that. You can find famous and non-famous people.
http://www.findagrave.com/

Alamanzo Wilder:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GSln=Wilder&GScid=286603&GRid=3949&pt=Almanzo%20
James%20Wilder&

Laura Ingalls Wilder:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=1625

Robert E. Lee:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GSln=Lee&GSfn=Robert+&GSmn=E&GSby=
1807&GSbyrel=in&GSdy=1870&GSdyrel=in&GSob=b&GRid=615&
pt=Robert%20Edward%20Lee&

Cathryn Damon:
http://findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=6440476&pt=
Cathryn%20Damon

A ten year old I located randomly:
http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=7151186


And of course my favorite site-Dead or Alive:
http://www.deadoraliveinfo.com/dead.nsf/viewdocs-nf/lastsixmonths

Posted by Emma Lathan on May 5, 2005 at 01:51:39 PM
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May 4, 2005

Concert debrief

The Lesley Concert went well. The house was not as big as the previous time that I sang. We started with a 16th century madrigal followed by three selections by Gabriel Faure, which were clearly the only pieces of music I really connected with.

On your list of things to do before you die, you must include, "listen to works by Gabriel Faure."

Gabriel Faure:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gabriel_Faure

Many people, if they are familiar with his music, know his Requiem. However, his output is great and pretty much everyone is a winner.

List of compositions:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_compositions_by_Gabriel_Faur%E9

(I love the way I mix formal and informal language.)

We next performed a collections of Spanish songs which were followed by a suite of Alice in Wonderland songs set to music by Irving Fine. Mr. Fine and I are old friends (not really since he died so long before I was born). My grade school performed some of his work and let's say it is an acquired taste. We finished up with Schummann's 'Widmung' and Negro Sprituals.

Given the composition of the program, I have long held that the current choir direction devised it while she was in labor because of the unusual pieces. The lyrics of 'Lullaby of the Duchess' include such gems as "cry, cry you ugly, ugly pig baby" and 'speak roughly to your little boy." Then she includes something like "Widmung" which speaks of love and sweetness and light. Then there are the liturgical pieces...Joshua fitting the battles of Jericho and being tormented in the flame and swinging low sweet chariot and Maria Mater Gratiae.

At any rate, the concert went well and hopefully:
-There will be more concerts in addition to the main concert.
-There will be more people
-I won't have to do Alice in Wonderful and other "I love, there are flowers and its springtime and I am pretty and life is joy" songs.
-The main concert will be moved from Tuesday nights so the adults with jobs can come.
Posted by Emma Lathan on May 4, 2005 at 11:56:40 AM
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My Country

Sometimes I check out the country I created on Nation States. (http://www.nationstates.net/) Unlike a total RPG game with a lot more control over variables, this site allows you to create a nation and daily or weekly you make decisions on the policies that affect it. The decisions are implemented in 24 hours. This is the state of my nation today:


Location: Axen
The Empire of Gollumidas is a very large, safe nation, renowned for its burgeoning crystal bat population. Its compassionate population of 146 million have some civil rights, but not too many, enjoy the freedom to spend their money however they like, to a point, and take part in free and open elections, although not too often.

It is difficult to tell where the omnipresent government stops and the rest of society begins, but it juggles the competing demands of Education, Healthcare, and Social Welfare. The average income tax rate is 47%, but much higher for the wealthy. A robust private sector is led by the Book Publishing, Woodchip Exports, and Arms Manufacturing industries.

Truth is often impossible to tell from fiction on the evening news, drunk drivers are sentenced to death, the wearing and manufacture of fur apparel is banned, and teenagers across the country are celebrating the defeat of a national curfew bill. Crime is totally unknown, thanks to the all-pervasive police force and progressive social policies in education and welfare. Gollumidas's national animal is the crystal bat and its currency is the crys.

Gollumidas is ranked 1st in the region and 34,235th in the world for Most Rebellious Youth.


'Axen' is the region, which I created since the region where my country was located originally, the West Pacific, was not allowing us to grow very well. Too much competition. Right now it is just us. Perhaps we will let others in. I made a decision this morning to allow refugees into the Empire. It was either allow them to come, shut them out or allow them to come, take on the unwanted jobs such as trash pick-up and pay them slave wages. Admittedly the questions posed mirror real world issues that companies must grapple with. We haven't joined the UN yet and there is one country we are considering annexing for no other reason than I worked with the person who created it and he seems to have neglected it...
You have choices when you create your nation as to how you would like to govern it-dictatorship, communist state and so forth. I tried to be a monarchy but the only monarchy choice was a constitutional monarchy, which I did not want. I have often considered what Queen Elizabeth and the United Kingdom would be like if she had real legislative power.


I really like the fact that drunk drivers are sentenced to death even though when I voted for the measure, it was that they should face punishment. Apparently I am meaner than I thought. The "news" decision was unsatisfying because I had to choose between freedom of speech and state controlled news.

Here is the link to the Empire in case you want to keep tabs:
http://www.nationstates.net/cgi-bin/index.cgi/target=display_nation/nation=gollumidas

I know that there are more involved ones out there but I like this "no muss no fuss" site.
Posted by Emma Lathan on May 4, 2005 at 11:31:14 AM
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May 2, 2005

The Best one yet

Boy, these are beginning to sound like X-rated email...


"Slay the dragon yourself. Or hell, be the dragon and rip the guts out of the nearest jackass in a suit of armor who dares to tell you what love is and isn't. I hear jackass is good with ketchup (but then, isn't most everything?). " - LadyPhoenix in her LJ
Posted by Emma Lathan on May 2, 2005 at 04:58:41 PM
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May 1, 2005

The Apprentice Season 3-The demise of Alex

"I'm not even supposed to be here today!"
- Dante Hicks

(that will likely be my epitaph)


This is taken from a post I made at another site:

Trump is the funny one. I have watched the tape of that boardroom a few times and I think as Trump was thinking over the track records he probably reflected on the fact that:

A) As badly as Tana screwed up with this task, on the whole she has been a winner and a contributer to winning teams both as PM and as a team player. Trump could probably pick at random moments of her success.
B) Carolyn, Trump and George said that Tana had no fire and may not be able to handle the killers his organization deals with. However, his second Apprentice, Kelly was spoken of as having no fire either but he got hired over the outspoken and combative Jen M, who was described by George as being rough around the edges but a good fit.
C) Alex's last win as project manager was the graffiti project where he benefitted by my girl Tara's overpersonalization.
D) Alex flew under the radar-there was no doubt. Not unlike Chris or last season's Ivana, he got over because someone else committed the greater sin in Trump's eyes. Trump also had to see that in the last boardroom sessions, Alex was a common denominator.
E) Trump respects someone who knows how to defend themselves. Tana brought up the record, which was the one thing that Alex had no defense again. She brought her success as a PM and team player. Trump has the freakish memory. Sometimes he forgets and sometimes he remembers when something sparks it. He also will get fixated on something that he personally disapproves of (Chris's tabacco habit or Season Two Bradford's giving away his immunity or Erin's wisecracking). Then it will come out that he has been paying attention all along. He did notice that Alex and probably remembered the sleeping and so forth and on this task he was like "well she didn't tell me to do marketing..." So much for initiative.

I know that the interviewers will probably bounce Craig. This is exactly good since he can't blame it on anyone. I am hoping he doesn't cry racism because it would not be in this case.

I also note that the last person to be fired from regular competition was a former Magna or "book smarts" player...

Trump as seen over the last two seasons, does not like people who shade their mistakes or who don't admit them. I personally think the latter cost Jen M. the apprenticeship since she defended herself and really did hear what George and Carolyn had to say on what she didn't do right as opposed to Kelly who defended what he did right and acknowledged what he did wrong especiallythe critiques from Carolyn since Carolyn arranges the golf tournaments for a living and he could only benefit from her experience.


Hurray to the mom from Iowa and her beadazzler.



Posted by Emma Lathan on May 1, 2005 at 03:30:30 PM
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April 28, 2005

And another one

"Dysfunction Junction, what's your function? Hooking up kids with behavioral problems..."
- Mad TV's Public School House RocK


By the way, it seems that Darth Vader has gotten into the blogging game:
http://darthside.blogspot.com
Posted by Emma Lathan on April 28, 2005 at 07:31:30 PM
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April 27, 2005

Things I learned yesterday but only typed today

1. Apparently the beautiful scarf that my sister brought back from Barbados is a doo rag.
2. Alison is no longer with the company.
3. Charlie's frog still has no name.
4. David is apparently mean according to Charlie's roommate. [He was just really tired as confirmed through conversation today]
5. It is still possible to wake up with smoke in your clothes even if you did not smoke.
6. It was good to meet others that found Victor a little "strange."
7.It does take three Guinnesses to make the Sam Adams go down.
8. I was amused at the fact that Charlie wanted to hear me talk about Lee and Grant because sometimes I bore myself thinking about it.
9. Alison thought I did not like her which was sad and teaches me that the "all I have to do is be is Black and to die" attitude I have needs to be amended at times. I am glad that we were cool although I was bratty about the couch thing: "Come on....she's cute. What do you mean you sleep on one couch and she cleeps on another...."
10. Apparently I am a racist because if I were to choose the sperm donor of my children, I would want them to turn out like Garrison, where they would fit into my family's color scheme (no pun intended) rather than a pale face.
11. I learned that Charlie is something of the United Nations although I think the "Italian" bit surprised me just like Alison surprised me with her ethnicity. Although, i am glad that we are all just American really.
12. Jamie has some interesting extracurricular activities and aaprently would be willing to clear his weekend schedule for someone who is extremely talented in...well... "I have a bag of tricks...."
13. Sex toys often do not carry over to the next girlfriend.
14. Charlie is a prude.-so he says and maybe we need more of them.
15. Charlie is not gay, so he says. It is a coincidence that he shops at the Gap and prefers styling the heads of Barbie dolls and crosses his legs and has that goatee thing going on.
16. Dave does the funniest impression of David L. "Oh my shoes...." Although it sounded like the ghetto version of Agador-spartacus from The Bird Cage.
17. David L. lives in Quincy.
18. Awilda takes in more than people realize.
19. Alison is smarter and more down to earth that people think.
20. Paul reminds one of a manga character from Rumiko Takahashi's Maison Ikkoku. He is quiet and sardonic in terms and then he disappears.
21. It is official. She has been renamed Harbage.
22. Apparently I am rich.
23. Everyone can talk about more than just the job. (This is a good thing because it means that I might consider socializing more with people from work)
24. Victor would apologize for not his perception of not meeting expectations.
25. Apparently Ian is Matt's gay lover. I am sure that this will come as pleasant news to Ian's wife.
26. Charlie's roommate is named Mike and he dates a vegetarian which means that he will be a vegetarian until they break up.
27. Apparently Murderstreet is the album that I need to listed to.
28. Apparently Mary can look cuter than she does if she did not look so defeated. Right...Again I say, "You men...."
29. Water is a wonderful thing. It keeps the hangovers away.
30. Apparently "Adult" is playing at the the Middle East.
31. Apparently I am a sadist, sexist and racist because I prefer Garrison as a donor, Elizabeth as something to have about the house and because of the fact that I liked to ask complex math questions as a man during sex.
32. Charlie's roommate has red hair.
33. Maroon is not a good colour for Charlie.
34. Jamie is one of the last Miller Lite drinkers on the East Coast.
35. Apparently being married to me is horrid.
36. Paul's phone is larger than my two hands.
37. Charlie took photos of the lovely Awilda and the guys but took none of me...
38. Apparently we all need to be doing something else for work.
39. According to Charles, all white people smell like bologna.
40. Also according to Charles, there is something wrong with my being a "do-gooder."
41. Apparently I stole free postcards.
42. That working on rush just dumped on you just under a half an hour before you leave will cause you to miss chorus. However drinking at Three Cheers is a good alternative.
43. Three Cheers is just as empty on Tuesday nights as on Mondays even during football season.
44. Suicide is painless and it brings on many changes.
45. It's time for me to go back to being normal.
46. Alison is very arts and kids oriented. I hope she goes onto something great. Only I would speak of the virtues of Boston Cares during a drinking session...
47. Apparently Charlie enjoys sending Garrison "adult pictures."
48. I think that Victor would be amusing in bed because he would probably introduce off the wall things but then apologize because it's weird and I am a nice girl and so forth.
49. Victor was in a frat and apparently Matt is upset because he is a straight white male and I would not sleep with him because my preferences don't include him on so many levels.

Posted by Emma Lathan on April 27, 2005 at 01:40:24 PM
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Things that are nice to find.

This is what someone I knew a long time ago posted about me:

"emma was my only true friend in junior high,
but her friendship was way more valuable to
me than more friends woulda been--the other
kids were all jerks while emma was smart,
cool, and loved the same sci-fi and comic book
nonsense I did. we'd watch cartoons every day
after school and dissect the episodes via
phone--did lady j have a secret romance a-
brewin? could the autobots possibly be any
more boring vs. the deceptacons? burning
questions."
Posted by Emma Lathan on April 27, 2005 at 11:12:22 AM
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April 25, 2005

The best quote of the day

"The other day I played poker with tarot cards.
I got a full house and four people died."
- Stephen Wright
Posted by Emma Lathan on April 25, 2005 at 01:50:52 PM
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April 24, 2005

Words to keep in mind...


I think that when my life feels like this:
"Sometimes I think the universe just waits for me to get cocky."- Egon, The Real Ghostbusters
cartoon

I must remember this:
"A man is as happy as he makes up his mind to be."- Abraham Lincoln


Posted by Emma Lathan on April 24, 2005 at 09:13:20 PM
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April 17, 2005

Politics and Cows

Politics 101


DEMOCRAT
You have two cows.
Your neighbor has none.
You feel guilty for being successful
Barbara Streisand sings for you.

REPUBLICAN
You have two cows.
Your neighbor has none.
So what?

SOCIALIST
You have two cows.
The government takes one and gives it to your neighbor.
You form a cooperative to tell him how to manage his cow.

COMMUNIST
You have two cows.
The government seizes both and provides you with milk.
You wait in line for hours to get it.
It is expensive and sour.

CAPITALISM, AMERICAN STYLE
You have two cows.
You sell one, buy a bull, and build a herd of cows.

BUREAUCRACY, AMERICAN STYLE
You have two cows.
Under the new farm program the government pays you to shoot one,
milk the other, and then pours the milk down the drain.

AMERICAN CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You sell one, lease it back to yourself and do an IPO on the 2nd one.
You force the two cows to produce the milk of four cows. You are
surprised when one cow drops dead. You spin an announcement to the
analysts stating you have downsized and are reducing expenses.
Your stock goes up.

FRENCH CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You go on strike because you want three cows.
You go to lunch and drink wine.
Life is good.

JAPANESE CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary
cow and produce twenty times the milk.
They learn to travel on unbelievably crowded trains.
Most are at the top of their class at cow school.


TALIBAN CORPORATION
You have all the cows in Afghanistan, which are two.
You don't milk them because you cannot touch any creature's private
parts.
You get a $40 million grant from the US government to find
alternatives to milk production but use the money to buy weapons.

IRAQI CORPORATION
You have two cows.
They go into hiding.
They send radio tapes of their mooing.


FLORIDA CORPORATION
You have a black cow and a brown cow.
Everyone votes for the best looking one.
Some of the people who actually like the brown one best
accidentally vote for the black one.
Some people vote for both.
Some people vote for neither.
Some people can't figure out how to vote at all.
Finally, a bunch of guys from out-of-state tell you which one you think
is the best-looking cow.

CALIFORNIA CORPORATION
You have millions of cows.
They make real California cheese.
Only five speak English.
Most are illegals.
Arnold likes the ones with the big udders.
__________________



Unfortunately I cannot take credit for this. I received it from a group I post to.

Posted by Emma Lathan on April 17, 2005 at 04:05:38 PM
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April 13, 2005

Lesley University Singers Spring Choral Concert--Update

Lesley University Singers present their
SPRING CHORAL CONCERT
Tuesday, May 3, 8:00 p.m.
Marran Theatre
Lesley University Main Campus

Concert music will include Choruses from 'Alice in
Wonderland' by Irving Fine, traditional Spanish
songs, Negro Spirituals, music for women
composed by Gabriel Faure and more.

Admission is free and open to the public

*Yes, I am singing. No solo this time. The concert was moved to May 3rd to accommodate those who celebrated Passover in the Chorus.*

Posted by Emma Lathan on April 13, 2005 at 10:35:50 AM
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April 7, 2005

Lesley University Singers Spring Choral Concert

Lesley University Singers
present their
SPRING CHORAL CONCERT
Tuesday, April 26, 8:00 p.m.
Marran Theatre
Lesley University Main Campus

Concert music will include Choruses from Alice in Wonderland by Irving Fine, traditional Spanish
songs, Black Spirituals, music for women composed by Gabriel Faure, and more.

Admission is free and open to the public

*Yes, I am singing. No solo for me this time. Still will be a good concert.

Posted by Emma Lathan on April 7, 2005 at 03:15:40 PM
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April 5, 2005

Wow

Gee. I guess moving to Holliston agrees with someone!

I went to the link and found that the site has been updated and in rather an intriguing format.

Pretty good.

Well it looks like the coach that fell to Syracuse two years ago finally got one.

I was as happy because its seems that for the past few years of the Men's NCAA Tournament, I have not picked the winner. It was great to have picked the winner this time (Although I still say Syracuse got lucky in 2003...;) )

The women's will be exciting tonight. For the first time in I don't know how long, it is not the predictable Lady Vols from Tennessee against the Lady Huskies from UConn. While I would have liked to see ol' Pat in the final, I am further intrigued by who made it. Baylor? I totally did not see that coming.

Anyway...

"Don't have sex with men. It leads to kissing and pretty soon you have to start talking to them."
-Anonymous
Posted by Emma Lathan on April 5, 2005 at 12:11:20 PM
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March 16, 2005

Thankful for what you have

As usual, just when you think that it is all bad, life shows you that it could be worse and that little things mean a lot:

http://www.worldpress.org/Americas/2044.cfm
Posted by Emma Lathan on March 16, 2005 at 11:38:41 AM
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March 15, 2005

Yet another quote

"Even if you are on the right track... you'll get run over if you just sit there."

Unfortunately, it was attributed to "?"
Posted by Emma Lathan on March 15, 2005 at 02:47:35 PM
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March 10, 2005

Yet another good quote

"There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them. "
- Joseph Alexandrovitch Brodsk

Posted by Emma Lathan on March 10, 2005 at 11:44:07 AM
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March 6, 2005

...

"I like black, at least until they make a darker color."
- OriginalWacky
Posted by Emma Lathan on March 6, 2005 at 08:05:25 PM
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February 21, 2005

A better quote than the John Barrymore quote

While I still like my quote-"Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory"...
I think that this one is great too:

"Once a woman has forgiven her man, she must not reheat his sins for breakfast. "
- Marlene Dietrich

Marlene had a way with words.

Posted by Emma Lathan on February 21, 2005 at 06:19:47 PM
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February 16, 2005

Moving Day

My company is moving to its new location on A Street which is good because we don't have to step on small children anymore. It is a little sad because you get used to a place and learn to to love the good bits or hate the bad bits.

As with any move, it is organized chaos. There are people who know exactly what they ought to be doing and others who think they do. We are having lots of food purchased for us. (Pizza and wings just arrived). Part of me can't help but think that should go towards a better use.

It's finally happened and it's all Jason's fault. I was a sometime blogger but now I want to do it all the time-if only I had more hours in the day.

:)
Posted by Emma Lathan on February 16, 2005 at 05:15:06 PM
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February 3, 2005

Debrief- Tsunami Fundraiser hosted by Room to Read Boston

In case anyone was wondering, the event was a success. Room to Read Boston raised $10,000 for the tsunami survivors in Sri Lanka.

Dr. Ruffing and the Sackstein twins were a hit. They embodied what I think is the best in humanity. I don't say that lightly. In the case of the Sackstein twins, they saw a problem and came up with a solution. They did not let people dissuade them because they were kids, which can often happen. They run this venture more professionally than some adults I can think of.

Ron Ruffing said something that I remembered hearing as a child. He said that his mother told him that, "those to whom much have been given are those of which much is expected." I was made to feel that way for most of my life. I think it is page three of the "Life as a Black person in America" handbook. I remember feeling very guilty at that point. I speak a lot about how people forget how lucky they are and recalled how I griped about my job, which I chose. I had the freedom to chose something. I complained about being tired earlier and remembered that I really had not a clue of what it meant to be REALLY TIRED.

It was great to be surround by a good mix of people. People who were very well off, people who had a little more than enough and people who had enough but wanted to do for others because they realized that fate could have decreed that they could have been the unfortunate ones.

If any of you were there and saw someone in a red top and black pants quietly policing the area, that was me. I would also like to hear from you if you were there. I am big on feedback.

We are planning another mini-fundraiser in the fall. We also have 3 people who are interested in coordinating our Read a Thon effort. The Read A Thon is an initiative where elementary school kids will read book and collect pledges based on the number of pages that they have read. The proceeds will go to Room to Read to build a reading room. For those of us who are a wee bit older, it is similar to the MS read a thon. So far we have a school in Lexington interested. The three people who were interested last night came from Framingham, Worcester and Waltham.

So in all, it was a good night and well worth missing Wife Swap.

Posted by Emma Lathan on February 3, 2005 at 08:51:22 PM
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February 1, 2005

More quotes and then back to work...

"The man who has bread to eat does not appreciate the severity of a famine."
Yoruba proverb

"Always remember Ferengi Rule of Acquisition Number 76: Every once in a while, declare peace. It confuses the hell out of your enemies."
- Quark, Deep Space Nine

"If someone asks you if you're a god, you say YES!"
- Winston Zeddmore, Ghostbusters

"I had forgotten that men could not see unicorns. Just because they cannot see them does not mean they do not exist."
- The Unicorn, from The Last Unicorn

"A man is as happy as he makes up his mind to be."
- Abraham Lincoln

The moral of the story is... dont leave ANYTHING in the refrigerator. "
- Spike Spiegel (Cowboy Bebop/Toys in the Attic)

"I could be having this conversation for the rest of my life..."
- John Cleese as Basil Fawlty

"Somebody's gettin' in trouble..."
- Bobby from the 80s cartoon 'Dungeons and Dragons'

"I'm not going there to die. I just need to know if I was ever really alive."
- Spike (Cowboy Bebop)


Posted by Emma Lathan on February 1, 2005 at 02:33:43 PM
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A new twist on an old adage

I am so putting this in my signature...



"Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day; teach that person to use the Internet and they won't bother you for weeks. "
- unknown

Posted by Emma Lathan on February 1, 2005 at 01:24:36 PM
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January 30, 2005

Reminder-Tsunami Fundraiser hosted by Room to Read Boston-February 2, 2005

EDUCATION:
Transforming Tsunami Catastrophe into Long-Term Opportunities

Why did CNN interview Room to Read on perspectives of school rebuilding in Sri Lanka?
Why did an IDP Camp medical doctor choose Room to Read for his commitment?
Why did MA teenage twins initiate a nationwide tsunami fundraiser for Room to Read?

Come to Join Us for Slideshows
Learn about how result-oriented Room to Read will help 10 million children achieve literacy by 2020,how a seasoned medical doctor passionately rises to advocate for education, and how 12-years-old twins create a banding movement rippling across the country.

Get inspired and take actions to help rebuild schools in the ravaged region for a lasting impact!



Wednesday, February 2
6:30-8:30PM (Slideshows Start at 7:00PM)
66 Long Wharf, 5th Floor, Boston
(Near the Aquarium at the waterfront, past Marriott Hotel and Chart House Restaurant)
Directions & Parking: http://www.newdirections.com/index.asp?id=129

Wines, Cheese & Desserts
Raffles: Romantic Dinner, Intriguing Play, Sensational Massage, Career Consultation & Gift Certificate

Admission is free but donations are appreciated.

2004 Tax Deduction:
Donations made by 1/31/05 are qualified. To expedite the process,
please make your contributions online at http://www.roomtoread.org/donate.html.

R.S.V.P.: Boston@RoomToRead.org (Please include name, e-mail, number in party)
For more info: Celine at 617-283-1562


Presenters:
Ron Ruffing is a medical doctor at New England Medical Center and teaches at Tufts University. Ron is highly devoted to international healthcare and has been taking personal time to work at various IDP camps in disadvantaged developing countries for over a decade. At the onset of the tsunami crisis, Ron was working in the Abu Shouk IDP Camp in North Darfur, Sudan, following closely the crisis, and invited to join an emergency health assessment project in Aceh. A dedicated Room to Read volunteer/donor, Ron initiated this tsunami fundraiser and personally donated $1,000. Ron strongly identifies with Room to Read founder’s vision of turning emergency relief into long-term development in such as school rebuilding and hence fiercely advocates for lasting solutions.

David & Danielle Sackstein are 12-year-old twins who are students at Ephraim Curtis Middle School in Sudbury, MA, and will be celebrating their B'nai Mitzvah milestone on 5/14. The media-worthy nationwide "Schools Banding Together " movement to benefit Room to Read is their chosen "Mitzvah Project." The campaign sells wrist bands inscribed with "Relief, Rebuild, Restore: Schools Building Schools, Tsunami Relief 2005." 50,000 bands have been ordered nationwide. Both children are A students and leaders in their Student Government (President of Student Council and Chair of a committee respectively). For more information on the banding campaign, please contact the children at blsjd@cs.com or 978-443-3007.


Posted by Emma Lathan on January 30, 2005 at 07:42:08 PM
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January 24, 2005

Another great quote

"Too many people cast their bread upon the water hoping it will be returned to them toasted and buttered."
-- Farmers' Almanac


(Clearly they were eavesdropping on me today at work where I said the same thing but used some slightly different language.)
Posted by Emma Lathan on January 24, 2005 at 06:56:11 PM
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Transforming Tsunami into Long-Term Opportunities -Room to Read Event

Hi, It's me again.
I am on the Community Outreach Committee for this event and thought that I would share it with you. Please come if you can. I also had dinner with Ron (after the same event as John Wood-both know how to lay waste to a pile of nachos with cheese) and he's a great guy.
I have not met the twins from Sudbury but am looking forward to meeting anyone that has the presence of mind to plan in this day and age.

There will also be information available regarding getting involved with Room to Read beyond Wednesday, February 2nd.


----------------------------------------------------------------------Transforming Tsunami into Long-Term Opportunities
Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 6:30 PM - Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 8:30 PM
Organizer: Boston Chapter Room to Read

New Directions, Inc.
66 Long Wharf, 5th Floor
Boston,MA 02210

(Near the Aquarium at the waterfront, past Marriott Hotel and Chart House Restaurant)
Directions & Parking: http://www.newdirections.com/index.asp?id=129

Why did CNN interview Room to Read about school rebuilding in Sri Lanka?

Join Us for Slideshows

Learn how result-oriented Room to Read will help 10 million children achieve literacy by 2020. Hear from a seasoned medical doctor and from 12-year-old twins who created a banding movement rippling across the country.

Get inspired and take actions to help rebuild schools for lasting impact!

Wines, Cheese & Desserts
Raffles: Romantic Dinner, Intriguing Play, Sensational Massage, Career Consultation & Gift Certificate

2004 Tax Deduction:
Donations made by 1/31/05 are qualified. To expedite the process,
please make your contributions online at http://www.roomtoread.org/donate.html.

R.S.V.P.:
Boston@RoomToRead.org (Please include name, e-mail, number in party)
For more info: Celine at 617-283-1562

Presenters:
Ron Ruffing is a medical doctor at New England Medical Center and teaches at Tufts University. Ron has been taking personal time to work at various IDP camps in disadvantaged developing countries for over a decade. At the onset of the tsunami crisis, Ron was invited to join an emergency health assessment project in Aceh. A dedicated Room to Read volunteer/donor, Ron initiated this tsunami fundraiser and personally donated $1,000.

David & Danielle Sackstein are 12-year-old twins from Sudbury, MA. They will be celebrating their B'nai Mitzvah milestone on 5/14. The media-worthy nationwide "Schools Banding Together " movement to benefit Room to Read is their chosen "Mitzvah Project." The campaign sells wrist bands inscribed with ”Relief, Rebuild, Restore – Schools Building Schools, Tsunami Relief 2005.” 50,000 bands have been ordered nationwide. For more information on the banding campaign, please contact the children at blsjd@cs.com or 978-443-3007.

Posted by Emma Lathan on January 24, 2005 at 06:52:29 PM
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January 16, 2005

Michelle Kwan and the meaning of Life

Those that know me know that January and March are important months to me. Not only are they playoff months for football and college basketball, they are also important months in the figure skating season. If you are American, they are THE important months. January is the US Nationals and March is the World's in which one skater in each discipline receives a piece of hardware that says that "All of that hard work paid off. I am the best at this moment. Or at least until the next 16 year old comes along." I watch all with equal zeal and have been known to use similar language when watching either the final four of college basketball or the long program of figure skating.

Michelle Kwan, who in the amateur ranks is consider an elderstateswoman at 24, won her 9th national title. From 1996-2005, she has accumulated 9 titles. Nine first place titles that say she is the best female skater in the United States.

Name a sports team, professional or college, in recent memory (besides the Yankees or the truly underrepresented women's college basketball team, the women's professional soccer team and tennis player Steffi Graff) that accomplished as much in over ten years. Especially in a sport that seems to not want you around once you hit any age of legal consent. Michelle, at 24, is still at the top of her game.

At times, she was challenged. The only thing she does not have is an Olympic gold medal, which is a tough situation for a competitor of her calibre to be reconciled with, especially since in both of her Olympic showings she was only a triple jump away from the gold medal. This hole in her resume seems to be the reason she has kept her amateur status. There are great skaters that have not medaled, let alone won gold at the Olympics. Kurt Browning is one name that comes to mind. He was a 4 time World Champion and he, was the one actually performed the first quad jump. Albertville and Lillehammer were supposed to be his years and unfortunately, it just didn't work out. He has gone one to a wonderful professional career where he has re-invented what is possible in men's skating. Yuka Sato, who competed in the 1994 Lillehammer Olympics that Michelle could only attend as alternate because she was not old enough to compete, went on to win the Worlds in 1994 and have a fruitful professional career which includes pairs skating with her husband Jason Dunjen.

The huge challenge for Michelle has been not only to be motivated enough to stay in the game of amateur skating but also to take positive risks that would allow her to grow as a skater and artist. The women in the senior's are pushing again. They are upping their difficulty in jumps while still maintaining requsite artistry that is expected of the women.

Probably the best advice that Michelle has probably even been given came from of all people, former Utah Jazz and still LA Laker, Karl Malone. People who know me, know that he is not one of my favorite people. There are definitely players that come before him that invoke particular loathing from me-former Houston Rocket and Laker Robert Horry is at the head of the list. Malone told Michelle basically that she can't sit on the fence. If she wants the gold medal, she has to be serious about it and prepare for it every day. There can be no doubt. He delivered this advice to her during one of those stupid ABC Sports segments where they were trying to market that they carry both skating and the NBA and that both were cool. I largely ignored it until he gave her his "pearl of wisdom." The earth I suppose stood still. It was a little like listening to the small segments they run during "The Apprentice" where Trump talks about success and preparedness and but for the fact that it is coming from a living cartoon, it actually is pretty sound advice.

I think that the Michelle I saw at the US Nationals last night is a more focused Michelle that does not take anything for granted and that took Malone's advice to heart. I don't think she ever did take anything for granted. She just really never had anyone for long periods of her career that could push her in any real way. She had to push herself, which is good but imagine the 80s NBA scene without Bird and Magic or Kareem or Parrish. People might point to Irina Slutskaya but, as much as I love Irina, she was and still is a very strong technical skater but until recently exceedingly weak in her artistry. She is leagues better these days but Michelle still trumps her. Sasha Cohen, who resides somewhere next to Karl Malone in my food chain of "Can't Stand you At All" Land, has all the talent in the world and at one time all of the arrogance that went with it. She hasn't delivered. Part of me hopes that she won't long enough to let Michelle win number 10 and a gold medal. That's not a realistic hope. Honestly too, I think Michelle keeping Sasha in the back of her head is good for her. Keeps her sharp.

What does Michelle's win mean for us mere mortals? If there is something you want, go for it. There is no sitting on the fence. Hard work, consistency, and inner pride will carry you a long way. Talent is good. Experience is and talent is better.

It also doesn't hurt when you rival puts her hand down on a triple lutz.




Posted by Emma Lathan on January 16, 2005 at 05:40:02 PM
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January 5, 2005

Caveat Emptor

**While researching vacation rentals (I do that a lot),I saw this notice on the website of one country's tourism board that listed charities that were receiving donations for the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. I think that it is worth passing on in addition to keeping in mind not just during this unfortunate event but always. The notice is pasted below as is. I believe they meant to use the word 'presence' instead of the word 'absence.'**


"NOTE: The Riviera Maya Tourism Board cannot guarantee the veracity of outside links or the absence of possible scams involving charities. The potential danger of fraud exists. In particular, beware of bogus organizations that have names similar to those of well-known aid agencies. Also beware of unsolicited emails that ask for your donation online. For those who want to make a donation, the most secure channels are established web sites and well-publicized telephone hotlines."
Posted by Emma Lathan on January 5, 2005 at 02:42:09 PM
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January 4, 2005

Another good quote

"worrying is like a rocking chair... it gives you something to do but it doesnt get you anywhere"
- van wilder

Posted by Emma Lathan on January 4, 2005 at 08:07:35 PM
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Just when...

I have always known that Bono was about global civic engagement the link below is yet another piece of proof.

http://www.u2.com/news/index.php?mode=full&news_id=1277

I'll never understand why it's important to know who Paris Hilton is dating at the moment instead of being aware of the people who are building a better tomorrow.
Posted by Emma Lathan on January 4, 2005 at 11:11:51 AM
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January 3, 2005

Top ten reasons

**I was researching and came across this and thougt it was funny. Those who don't do this may find it mildly amusing and you will be forgiven if you move on.**

Top 10 Reasons NOT to Use Project Management
(With apologies to David Letterman)


10. Our customers really love us, so they don't care if our products are late and don't work.

9. Organizing to manage projects isn't compatible with our culture, and the last thing we need around this place is change.

8. All our projects are easy, and they don't have cost, schedule, and technical risks anyway.

7. We aren't smart enough to implement project management without stifling creativity and offending our technical geniuses.

6. We might have to understand our customers' requirements and document a lot of stuff, and that is such a bother.

5. Project management requires integrity and courage, so they would have to pay me extra.

4. Our bosses won't provide the support needed for project management; they want us to get better results through magic.

3. We'd have to apply project management blindly to all projects regardless of size and complexity, and that would be stupid.

2. I know there is a well-developed project management body of knowledge, but I can't find it under this mess on my desk.

1. We figure it's more profitable to have 50% overruns than to spend 10% on project management to fix them.

By James R. Chapman, http://www.hyperthot.com
Posted by Emma Lathan on January 3, 2005 at 10:46:30 PM
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December 29, 2004

Another response to the situation in Southeast Asia

**I belong to the Boston Chapter of Room to Read which is an organization that raises money to assist some of the countries in Southeast Asia-Vietnam, Nepal, Cambodia and India (Yay! I remembered them all this time-I am usually forgetting India or Vietnam...)in building libraries/reading rooms and supporting literacy in said countries. The emphasis in the work is by providing funds to throw money at the problem but to partner with communities to build schools/libraries by involving them in the process. The organization even works to encourage the publication of children's books in the local language of the community. You can find out even more about the organization at roomtoread.org

Below is the letter from the founder, John Wood, who is a great person (I got to meet him in May and he was equally serious and wacky and completely loves those bar style nachos like the kind that you get a Uno's). In addition to fundraising, the organization also has trips to the above mentioned countries for those who wish to deliver books and assist with the building. As you can imagine, he stays very much in touch with what is going on in that region. I think as usual, his advice and reflection hits the mark.

(Pamela Frank incidentally is the co chair of the steering committee for the Boston Chapter. She forwarded this to us on the yahoogroup the chapter has.)**







________________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________

Message: 1
Date: Wed, 29 Dec 2004 00:39:41 -0500
From: "Pamela Frank"
Subject: The Disaster in Asia - and our response

Hi All:


The news from Asia this week reminds us of how fragile life is, how
lucky we are, and how important it is to the world that good NGOs
exist to help those in need.

For me, I have spent a lot of time over the last few days trying to
figure out what I can do to help in the rebuilding effort.



Yesterday I received a mail from my friend Bob Uppington, who runs a
UK-based charity called Shiva (www.shivacharity.org). He had
dedicated his holiday to being in Sri Lanka to work on one of their
school projects. He described how quickly life changed from having a
beer on the beach at sunset, to waking up the next morning to
disaster unlike anything he could have imagined.


Bob, being a man of action, set out to do what he could to help. He
was on the west coast, which was not as greatly affected. So he is
now heading east, and will be visiting schools that were destroyed or
damaged by the effects of the tsunami. Shiva has launched an
emergency fund for school reconstruction, and Bob has extended his
trip past his return date to stay in Sri Lanka and do what he can to
help. In the short term, the people have very immediate needs for
food, water, and medicine. In the medium term, they will need help
rebuilding homes and schools.


To help the school rebuilding effort, the Room to Read SF team today
decided to donate $2,000 to their emergency fund. In true Room to
Read spirit, we have made this a challenge grant, and they will be
asking their UK-based donors to match us dollar for dollar, pound for
pound. This is not a huge amount of money, but hopefully it will
help as the nation hit hardest by the tsunami begins the painful
process of rebuilding.


This gift is being made in honor of Room to Read's volunteers, board
members, and employees, in tribute for a great year.



Though this is outside RTR's normal focus, I feel that it needs to be
done. We are not an organization that can look at tragedy with
indifference, or claim that we can't respond because it does not fit
our business model. Also, we have worked with Shiva in Nepal and
have a lot of respect for their work - we have donated books to set
up libraries at two of their schools. Finally, when Frances and
Douglas of Room to Read UK did their initial 'Fund a School" project,
back in the days before Dean worked so hard to get us charitable
status, Bob allowed Shiva to serve as the "conduit" through which the
pound sterling donations passed to us. So in a way, we are giving
the Shiva team some karmic payback for being there for us when we
needed them.



Bob will be filling me in on what he finds as he studies the
situation on the eastern coast of Sri Lanka. If there is interest, I
will send an update mail out. I will also be making a personal
contribution to their work in January once we learn the extent of the
rebuilding project.

I had planned to send out a Thanks for a Great Year mail to all of
you, but for now this will have to suffice.



Great tragedies are a way that the world tests us. How we respond
says a lot about all of us as humans, and about whether optimism or
pessimism will ultimately win the day. For me, I can think of no
better way to end the year than to be leading this organization which
has superstars in every part of the world. Thank you, thank you,
thank you for a truly amazing year that is beyond my wildest
expectations or anything I ever dreamed possible when I started Room
to Read. This small gift to the people of Sri Lanka is just one of
many thousands of ways we are making the world a better place.



Warmest regards,

John



John J. Wood
Founder and CEO
Room to Read
World Change Starts with Educated Children
john@roomtoread.org
www.roomtoread.org
415.561.3331

We're all about results - 100 schools, more than 1,200 libraries,
over 400,000 books donated, 23 new local language children's books
published, 850 girls on long-term scholarships, and 45 new computer
and language rooms. Join our team in the quest for education for all
children!
Posted by Emma Lathan on December 29, 2004 at 10:17:22 AM
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December 27, 2004

My other blogs

Which actually are all the same content but not always. I think I will actually develop personalities for them. What I mean by "personalities" is that say one is the literary one and another is political and so you get the picture.

I actually had forgotten the blogspot ones until a few days ago. That was funny. I used to do the xanga one during the WGBH radio pledges.


http://www.bolt.com/journals/page/kitlat/Weblog
http://rdhigh.blogspot.com/
http://www.livejournal.com/users/ladydayelle/
http://www.xanga.com/kitlat
http://moreexplore.blogspot.com/
http://blog.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=blog.view&blogID=9280267&friendID=3592208&Mytoken=20041206173430
Posted by Emma Lathan on December 27, 2004 at 04:58:08 PM
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Never argue

"Never argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level then beat you with experience."
- Heard on WTUE

Posted by Emma Lathan on December 27, 2004 at 08:51:33 AM
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December 21, 2004

Beware my friends

Beware my friends as you pass by,
as you are now so ounce was I,
as I am now so you shall be,
prepare my friends to follow me.
-Old Tombstone saying
Posted by Emma Lathan on December 21, 2004 at 02:40:03 PM
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December 16, 2004

Another great John Wooden quote

"Be more concerned with your character than your reputation. Your character is what you are while your reputation is merely what others think you are. "
- John Wooden

Posted by Emma Lathan on December 16, 2004 at 10:01:47 AM
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December 13, 2004

The things we do.

While putting together suggestions for kid friendly events in the NYC, I came across this interesting fact. May we all think twice about complaining about our jobs.



"Madame Tussaud's is no flash in the pan. Dating back to the 18th century, Marie Tussaud was a wax modeller in Paris where she made, as one of her first figures, an image of the French writer Voltaire. In 1879, during the revolution, she was commanded by the new regime to make death masks of many prominent figures including Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. This jolly job entailed trawling through piles of dead bodies to recover heads which had been lopped off by the guillotine."
--What's On When
Posted by Emma Lathan on December 13, 2004 at 09:38:04 AM
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December 12, 2004

Enough Said

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one getting burned. "
- Sidhartha Buddha

Posted by Emma Lathan on December 12, 2004 at 07:44:53 PM
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December 8, 2004

We are down to the final four

The Apprentice is down to the final four. Who do we think will make it?
Will it be...

Sandy the bridal shop owner with her degree in the school of life?

Kelly the ex-military software executive and elder statesman at the age of 37?

Jennifer the corporate attorney who looks like Barbie but scheme like Buffy?

Kevin the software company owner and law student in pursuit of his Doctorate in Law?


Posted by Emma Lathan on December 8, 2004 at 09:20:46 AM
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December 2, 2004

More quotes and then back to work...

Slap me... I'll turn the other cheek. Knock me down... I'll just get back up. Kill me... and I'll haunt you forever."
-Anonymous
(Actually my philosophy in life)

I just know how the world works...LET ME FINISH"
- George W Bush

"Christmas is a time when people of ALL religions come together to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. "
- Bart Simpson

Posted by Emma Lathan on December 2, 2004 at 09:12:28 AM
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December 2, 2004

A) I turned the corner and feel better.

B) Last night's Apprentice was a waste. It was just a recap show that demonstrated that Trump can read cue cards just like Bob Hope.

C) HTML...

D) I decided that I would provide coffee and munchkins at the New Volunteer Orientation on December 11.

E) I will torment Phil as much as possible on December 4 because I will not see him until next year.

F) Having ice cream and chips in honor of Edward Ebersol was a good thing.

G) It's good to get into mischief

H) Japanese couples age 40 and older have the highest rate of divorce.

I) Apparently nothing happens in Eugene Oregon after December 19.

J) Everybody Wang Chung tonight.
Posted by Emma Lathan on December 2, 2004 at 09:05:21 AM
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December 1, 2004

World Aids Day

World Aids Day always creeps up on me. On everyone I think since in the US we seem to have gone back to thinking of it as something that we do not need to worry about.

I first learned about it from of all places, General Hospital. Yes, the daytime soap. They had several storylines dealing with HIV, which in a weird way was refreshing since many of the plotlines often do not have to do with the hospital. In the storyline every year the show has a benefit for AIDS day that is organized ironically by a character named Lucy Coe who is a poster child for promiscuity and for selfishness. Somehow she pulls it off...

I am always amazed at how news pays attention to the various awards' shows and other crap but not on this issue. I don't care about the Top 10 celebrity divorces. I don't care what Matt had to say on Letterman, (though admittedly he has a good head on his shoulders and paybackwards and forwards). I am sure that I am tired of the free for all in Auburn Hills on November 19th.

There is still no cure. Infections rates are increasing. Young women are the fastest growing population but everyone is at risk worldwide and that includes the US too.

Let us all remember that if we wish to see the face of HIV/AIDS, we have but to look in the mirror.
Posted by Emma Lathan on December 1, 2004 at 10:52:06 AM
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November 29, 2004

Okay so back to work

A)I am still sick.

B) I am still sick.

C) I want to sleep for a few more days.

D) CG has lurked but not talked to me. This is not as disconcerting because we are supposed to be working, which we are.

E) You know you are sick when you read the course description for Astronomy and you go, "Oh man I actually have to write a paper and defend my ideas/" and you want to get a master's in astronomy and you know that this is pretty much what you will be doing especially if you move onto PhD work.

F) The Sun always shines on tv.

G) Jason looks much smaller in his photo on this website. Then again I keep thinking he is like 6'8".

H) I did not see the musical Christmas Carol last night. I watched Gunsmoke instead.

I) Pornography is boring.
Posted by Emma Lathan on November 29, 2004 at 04:56:45 PM
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November 28, 2004

My comments on the Apprentice

[These are my comments from another site where I started an Apprentice thread for Season 2. This is concerning last week's episode where Andy, the Harvard grad got bounced.]



Well. admittedly I have not seen the show yet.

(I have a friend who tapes it for me on CNBC(?) when I forget to set my VCR. I got the tape this morning and will watch after work. A welcome INSTEAD OF. I am so not watching Kelsey Grammer in the musical "A Christmas Carol." The only definitive musical version is the 1970 "Scrooge" with Albert Finney-but that's another thread.)

Andy's bounce was not unexpected though I guess I expected him to last a bit longer. I am still not pleased because as I pointed out to my friend. Ivana will make the final four because she's with Kevin and Kelly. Even if she is Project Manager, Kevin and Kelly are going to succeed in spite of her and I don't see them losing unless she does something catastrophically stupid (which is entirely possible) but these guys want to get to the finals and Ivana is their necessary evil that they have to bring along. I am so hoping for a cat fight between her and Jenn so Trump can do another two-fer firing for bad behaviour (which to be honest, he should have done with the women's team in the beginning...) I still have the virtual champagne on ice though for Ivana's downfall. Who know? maybe next week they'll mix it up again and make it the boys against the girls so then...
Posted by Emma Lathan on November 28, 2004 at 08:19:16 AM
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Things to be Thankful for

That I can get up in the morning.

That though what I thought was a cold was really the flu and that it did not turn into pneumonia this time.

That I have the capacity to change and grow (even if it's not as fast as I'd like.)

Scrubs

Cold Case

The Robert Redford adaptations of the Tony Hillerman novels
I suppose the Red Sox winning in my lifetime and the Patriots too (although I still am glad the Bears beat the Patriots in the 80s-I think it was 1986. We were humongous Walter Payton fans. I still am and have followed his son Jarret with interest. Payton was one of the authentic nice guys in the league, not unlike Ray Bourque on the hockey side. And yes. I was a sucker for the Superbowl Shuffle video that came out.)

White tigers

Public rituals on the Boston Common.

More common ground than was experienced by previous generations

Vanilla Chai Tea

Gingerbread donuts

Full hips and chest (I like Rubenesque)and a full nose and lips and head of hair.

The ability to share

Understanding that my successes no matter how small are the fruit of the labors and the fullfillment of the dreams and hopes of those that came before me and that I have a responsibility to go as far as I can and to never forget and that I should pay forward and reach backward as much as I am able.


Posted by Emma Lathan on November 28, 2004 at 08:17:26 AM
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November 23, 2004

I can't believe I found this

The web is an interesting thing. I have experiences that I call "Now I thought that I was just making this up..." I didn't have a lot of things as a child but I had some interesting experiences and I read everything and I memorized a passage about Nancy Hanks Lincoln, who of course was the birth mother of a certain 16th president. I was looking for a log cabin vacation rental for a client and in one of my google searches I came up with a reference to Abe and his family. So of course I thought it would be a good idea to google Nancy Hanks Lincoln to see what would come up. (Instead of working, much like me taking time out to type this. Although truth be told I just want to go home and recuperate.)

So I found a couple of sites. Actually located a portrait of her, which I thought was interesting on a lot of levels. The most recent documentary of Abe Lincoln showed the photographs of his father, Thomas and his stepmother Sarah but not of his mother. You can see what he gets from her physically, especially the thin physique that is a trademark characteristic for him. I noted that she had the long fingers and body of someone with Marfans (the other thing I googled this morning in a discussion about Akhenaton. I remembered that it was said the Lincoln was "Marfanoid" and he would have likely died early if John Wilkes Booth had not taken matters into his own hands...) Well, below that I found the following verse which I actually memorized and can recite on cue if you ask me. I memorized it over many summers as a kid from one of those text books we all had in school for reading comprehension but it was one of the older ones where they had you recite and actually cared about grammar.:


"Nancy Hanks"
by Rosemary Benet

If Nancy Hanks
Came back as a ghost,
Seeking news
Of what she loved most,
She'd ask first
"Where's my son?
What's happened to Abe?
What's he done?"

"Poor little Abe,
Left all alone
Except for Tom,
Who's a rolling stone;
He was only nine
The year I died.
I remember still
How hard he cried."


"Scraping along
In a little shack,
With hardly a shirt
To cover his back,
And a prairie wind
To blow him down,
Or pinching times
If he went to town."


"You wouldn't know
About my son?
Did he grow tall?
Did he have fun?
Did he learn to read?
Did he get to town?
Do you know his name?
Did he get on?"


"A Reply to Nancy Hanks"
by Julius Silberger

Yes, Nancy Hanks,
The news we will tell
Of your Abe
Whom you loved so well.
You asked first,
"Where's my son?"
He lives in the heart
Of everyone.


Rosemary Benet and William and Stephen Vincent Benet were poets and prose writers whose subjects tended to be historical figures. Don't know who Julius is. Until today, I thought that either Stephen or William wrote the reply because the rhythm felt similiar.
Posted by Emma Lathan on November 23, 2004 at 02:30:25 PM
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November 16, 2004

Oh...

"And don't listen to the devil in the White nightgown..."
Posted by Emma Lathan on November 16, 2004 at 11:37:42 AM
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One more quote

This was my horrorscope read yesterday.

(Yes, the spelling mistake was intentional. This is actually how I pronounce the word. For a real laugh, ask me to say (The Count of Monte Crisco [Christo])


Now the quote:

"You can think of a million reasons why you aren't finished with your assigned task, but none of them are going to help you out when it comes down to the wire. Buckle down and finish your task so you can get to the fun later with a clear conscience. Doing something is better than doing nothing at all. Your friends or coworkers notice your actions and cheer you on. Your luck improves once you get started."



Daily extended (by Astrology.com)

Posted by Emma Lathan on November 16, 2004 at 11:36:20 AM
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More quotes

Well, not many more quotes. I woke up with one:

"I can't do it all on my own 'cause I know I'm no Superman."
--Theme song from 'Scrubs'

And the rest well...

"In every one of these jobs, there have been high points and low points, and what you have to learn to do in government, or in life, is to work through problems, seize the opportunities as they come along, deal with the crises and challenges as they come along, and that's always the way I've tried to live my life in public service."
--Colin Powell

"My late mother-in-law had a favorite expression: 'The happiest moment is now.' I've learned to live by that."
--Shirley Temple

"It's a dirty ol' shame when all you get from love is a long song."
--The Carpenters

"Stop that Pigeon"
--Dick Dastardly

"Emma Lathan. Snatching Defeat from the jaws of Victory. One request at a time. Mission Accomplished."
--Aragorn Marsden (coworker, although I said most of it first...)

"When the Rain washes you clean you'll know."
--Stevie Nicks




Posted by Emma Lathan on November 16, 2004 at 11:18:30 AM
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November 15, 2004

Quotes and other things.

I like quotes that speak to me from across culture and time. I don't mind humorous ones because they remind us not to take life too seriously. Here are some of the ones I have collected. A few are in my email signature and some I have collected in a copy book.

"It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent; it is the one that is most adaptable to change."
- Charles Robert Darwin (1809-1892)

Knowledge is its own reward."
- Ben Trismegistus

"Believe nothing, no matter where you read it or who has said it, not even if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense."
- Buddha

"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."
- Eleanor Roosevelt

"If someone asks you if you're a god, you say YES!"
- Winston Zeddmore, Ghostbusters

"I had forgotten that men could not see unicorns. Just because they cannot see them does not mean they do not exist."
- The Unicorn, from The Last Unicorn

"A man with outward courage dares to die. A man with inward courage dares to live."
- Lao-Tzu

"Do or do not do; there is no try."
- Yoda

" Faeries are not a fantasy, but a connection to reality. Faeries are not seen by the eyes, but through the heart. "
- Brian Froud

Defeat should never be anticipated! Every battle must be fought as if your life depended on winning"
- Largo from Megatokyo

" **Shakes head** If they do magic like they do web design, I'm surprised they haven't blown a crater in the New Jersey shore. "
- PhoenixBlue in a Private chat with Kaylara

We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars. "
- Oscar Wilde

"I would rather make the gravest of mistakes than surrender my own judgement."
-- Cora Munroe in Last of the Mohicans

"When we started skating, we had no role models in Poland to follow, we just had a wish."
-- Zagorska and Siudek, 1999 World Bronze figure skating pairs medalist from Poland

"Sometimes closure is saying goodbye to an empty chair."
--Alaiyo (2004)

"Crap is a hell of a legacy to leave behind."
--James Doohan, actor who played "Scotty" on Star Trek TOS

There are others but I do need to start working soon.


I told a coworker about "journaling" in grade school. She was mortified. She was like, "you probably scared the crap out of them." To which I responded that in defense of my 8-13 year old selves, I was given to understand that they would just check to see that I was writing-not read any of the entries. If they were doing just that then they would not have found out the passages where I rewrote episodes of Dallas and Dynasty (heck, they should have given me credit for my creativity).

I missed out on the great era of letter writing. Until the last four years, I wrote many paged letters that probably should be collected some day. I like collections of letters because of the insights they give about the writer and the reader. The problem I somethings have with online things such as online journals or email is that they are so ephemeral (One of those SAT words kiddies that means 'doesn't last long.') and so fine many people now will read them but what about later? Many people who sent letters in the past had a copy book where they copied the letters they sent and in some cases, the letters received. We only have that information because of such foresight.

I don't know. (It seems like Henry Blake said that a lot on MASH. His quote is one that I often recall: "I only know what they taught us in command school and that is
Rule #1--In war, soldiers die and Rule #2--Doctors can't change rule number one.)

Colin Powell resigned today. I suppose I should care but I don't. I have thought of him as all right. The damage has been done. He tried to mitigate a lot of it but I think that the US should pull out (gee, just like they did in Vietnam) and focus on the homefront. It's time to tend our own snakes even though we made a mess of things in the Middle East.
Posted by Emma Lathan on November 15, 2004 at 08:40:26 AM
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November 14, 2004

Two or three days later

I was told that I did a very good post. That pleases me. Praise is good. Too much praise is like too much candy--it gives you cavities. I am at work today which is not unusual. I work Sundays which are quieter but it can be tought like today. I so wanted to dtay in bed. Friday and Saturday were the first non related work days I have had in a long time. The cheap Capricorn binged spent on Friday. I purchased a skirt because I liked it and it was actually something that I wish has been at Target because it would not have cost as much (it was 44.50 but I know that at Target it would have been about 20.00 less). I also bought a hat. I like hats. I was sadly born in the era after the great hat wearers. Granted, there are still those who wear them as in really wear them and they live mostly in the South but they also go to church. I am not Christian so there goes that.

I also bought some manga graphic novels. Two that grabbed my attention were Tsubasa and TokyoTribes. Tsubasa is interesting to me because it takes the characters that were in Cardcaptor Sakura and spins a whole other story with them. Relationships are redesigned and some of the qualities that defined some of the characters are exhanged for others. (There are grammar teachers whipping out red pens everywhere at that last sentence...) It is also produced by an all female team called Clamp. They do shojo stuff and they do cool action. I like the idea that it is all girls. By contrast the Tribes is the Japanese take on the Street gang life that is overdone in American TV. I laughed at some of the dialogue. It was clear that the writers got their "ghettoese" from watching the movies that were exported from the US. Still, I bought the stories and the characters. I was still a little sad because again you'd think that all Black life was about it violence and money (or lack of it) and the bitch/whore/madonna/slave complex regarding women.

I have to figure out now how to transport a tuxedo to Colombia.

Work.

Let see, the Prince, is a coworker of mine. I used to call him "Monkey" and sometimes I still do. I took to calling him the Prince of Darkness not too long ago. He does fit that. He is dark without being gothic. If the writer Ambrose "Bitter" Bierce had great grandchildren (which he didn't because one son committed suicide and I think the other either died from a disease or in a duel and both were childless) this guy would be it. He is nice though and I do think of him as a little brother. He likes reading the comics with the weird humor. We actually bonded over a mutual love of Johnny the Homicidal Maniac. He's here today. He has a girlfriend named Rei. He used to call her girl-thing which I told him to stop doing because it objectifies her. I also told him that it is my mission to meet her and get her to call him "Monkey."

CG (Creepy Guy) actually shared photos with me after I had been such a brat. ( I may have said this already.) I will actually be nicer to him. I have given him thought but he is old. You can only stand still for so long but then too, he has been EVERYWHERE in Southeast Asia.

There are times that you wonder why you could not meet certain people at certain times in your life. I would have gone to Asia with him. I laugh to myself here because I also would have gone to Cuba with someone else. Almost did until my aunt talked me out of it. I should have held onto my cajones.

See, I'm all for thinking things out and what makes sense but I will tell you everytime that you are born alone and you die alone and when you are about to die, there is a reckoning that you have to deal with. The trick is to get through life without many regrets. Sometimes family though they mean well can hold you back, especially if you are a girl.

My regret can be summed up in trying to get the approval of my family. Or at least in trying to get the approval or blessing for certain decisions. That's where time is wasted again especially for girls in their early adulthood. By the time you realize that you can be free, time is lost and well you end up made but the trick is just to say well, this is the direction I can take now.

I think that now I will go back to work and try to find a way on a Sunday to ship a tuxedo to Colombia.

Posted by Emma Lathan on November 14, 2004 at 09:37:12 AM
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November 11, 2004

Today

I am currently listening the Monkees "I'm a Believer." I still can't seem to get the image of Shrek and his buddies dancing to the Smash Mouth version of this song which was so absurd.

I like the way it then slid into Evanescence.

I am st work. Not even real Veteran's get Veteran's Day off anymore. I have no living veterans in this family sadly and the last one would have been a WWII vet and that is the grandfather.

CG shared photos and told me about why he got interested in Southeast Asia. "CG" would be known to those in previous blogs not posted here as one of the older people that I work with. "CG" stands for creepy guy and I can collect 'em. He's nice enough and smart in his way. It's interesting that he did it. I was a complete brat to him the day before. I would like to talk to him for an extended time because this place does not afford that but then there is the whole "work is work" and "not work is not work" and he is a supervisor.

Well back to arranging for cool trips and things for other people such as myself. Maybe I will have more interesting stuff to say while I am doing the radio pledge for WGBH tonight and tomorrow. Like all the other lemmings, I'll definitely have an Apprentice opinion.
Posted by Emma Lathan on November 11, 2004 at 12:32:22 PM

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