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Sunday, January 18, 2004

All I managed today, work-wise, was reconciling the December bank statement. That's important, but it doesn't really help me get through the 1099s or all those payroll and sales tax returns that absolutely must be completed before the end of this month.

I now have two weeks and one weekend left. In the month, that is, and before the deadline. And I think I've proven over the last few weekends that not much is going to get done then. My work life is deadline-driven, no matter how much I keep denying it. My attitude has gone way downhill these last months. I can't seem to keep going the way I used to.

And of course I had to take time out to do homework this afternoon. I also did a little grocery shopping for Mom, who's feeling better but still not ready for the crowds at the supermarket. (Neither was I, but that's another story.) And she really wouldn't have liked the bad Sunday drivers. (Neither did I.)

It's something I noticed last Sunday, when I was out driving much earlier than usual. The people roaming about in their cars didn't seem to have any sense of purpose. They were meandering more than driving, which is frustrating for someone who's only out driving because he has to get somewhere. They seemed a different breed of humanity, and that outing justified in my mind my usual Sunday idleness. I'm a lot safer at home on outpatient day.

Speaking of homework (see way up above somewhere), I'm going to have to give up the notion of changing anyone's attitude about the right way to teach a language. I reread the syllabus for my ASL class, and it says something about leaving English (and your voice) at the door.

They'll have to forgive me if I still think in English, at least for a little while. It might take the whole semester, although it took less time than that for me to do some rudimentary thinking in Spanish when I took Spanish 1 a few years back. The difference is, I can watch Spanish-language TV all day long if I want to, and absorb a lot of it by osmosis. There's no sign-language equivalent for Univision and Telemundo, though.

17 January 2004

More clouds.

Tomorrow is supposed to be a holiday. If that means no school and no mail, it'll be way too much like a Sunday to suit me. I'll be putting in a regular work day, because the Boss hasn't recognized any new holidays since the first Thanksgiving in, like, 1620. He's pretty conservative when it comes to work (or anything else).

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The man whose memory we honor tomorrow stood for all the things the current government is trying to take away, and he sought it by means this administration deplores. Peace? Justice? Freedom? Say those words in Washington and you might get laughed out of town.

We need the kind of charismatic leadership Dr. King provided now more than ever. And it has to be someone outside politics, because U.S. politics in the twenty-first century is a blender set on purée. Anyone with anything to say is ground up, and the whole system is set up so that the blandest person is the only one left standing. The leadership vacuum that started when we lost Dr. King has only worsened over the years.

Recent recommendations can always be found on the links page.

One year ago: Second Hand
"There was a knock on my door this afternoon, and I could tell when I opened it that the woman standing in front of me was a tea drinker."

Two years ago: Eroded
"It's a lot easier to hibernate if you have cookies and beer (or even rice cakes and yogurt), and it's a comfort to curl up with a warm, friendly movie on a cold, lonely night."

Three years ago: Out of the Box
"That's why restrictive governments consider art to be a subversive influence. They want to make laws and rules for art and culture and keep it in a box, along with the artist."

Four years ago: Mail Call
"And the address labels I already have will last about ten years. This should be more than enough, because if I'm still at the same address for that long it will only be because I've lost my mind."

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