Not “Yellow”-Bellied

I know that I should be writing about how happy I am that Karl Rove is leaving–but isn’t it obvious? Instead, I had to share this. I kinda love this woman.

Karaoke singer attacked after starting song
Woman punches man on stage

It could have been the Coldplay song “Yellow” that upset the patron of a Wallingford neighborhood bar. Or perhaps it was the karaoke singer who belted it out.

Employees at Changes, on North 45th Street, said they don’t know, but the ensuing melee just past 1 a.m. Thursday was one unlike anything seen at the bar before.

As soon as the man on stage started singing about the stars in his best Chris Martin impersonation, the woman reportedly said: “Oh, no, not that song. I can’t stand that song!”

Witnesses said her distaste for Coldplay quickly took a violent turn, and she leaped at the would-be crooner, shouting expletives and telling him that his singing “sucked,” while expressing the same opinion of the song, according to a Seattle police report.

She pushed the man and punched him, all in an effort to stop his singing.

Other patrons went to the singer’s aid and hauled the 21-year-old woman outside.

“It took three or four of us to hold her down,” said Robert Willmette, one of the bartenders at Changes.

The woman, Willmette said, “went crazy” when she got outside, punching him twice in the face, and throwing blows at the others gathered around her.

But the person who drew most of the music critic’s ire was an off-duty Seattle police officer. The off-duty officer identified herself as a cop, gave her badge number and had another patron call 911 to request help for an officer.

The response was fast and overwhelming, with both patrol officers and Gang Unit detectives converging on the normally tame neighborhood bar.

“They blocked the whole street off,” Willmette said.

According to the police report, the woman’s rage only grew when the uniformed officers arrived.

The officers took the woman, whom Willmette described as “a little hippie girl,” to the ground, but she was still able to head butt the off-duty officer several times before she was handcuffed.

After treatment for injuries she suffered in the scuffle, the woman was booked into the King County Jail for investigation of assault. She was also held on a warrant issued for a previous theft charge.

The off-duty officer also went to the hospital, for treatment of several cuts, scrapes and bruises.

Later Thursday morning, bar employees were shaking their heads over the woman’s bizarre behavior.

According to the night bartender’s notes, she had just one drink — a single shot of Jägermeister.

She didn’t appear to be one of the regulars who flock to the bar for its karaoke nights on Sundays and Wednesdays.

Most are regulars who come for the pleasure of the singing, and the police are rarely needed.

“She was just crazy,” Willmette said.

Important vaccination information

No quips today, just important information that you probably wouldn’t get anywhere else…

There is a  new booster shot for pertussis, better know as whooping cough. Although infants are routinely vaccinated, it has become clear that the benefits of the vaccine wear off by the time you are a teen. It is now advised that teens and adults get the new booster every 10 years. It is easily combined with a tetanus shot.  Although it has been out for about a year, it is now becoming easier to get it from your doctor (at first it wasn’t being supplied for some reason).

Why worry about this? Let me share my story (skip if you have heard this before)… about 2 weeks after my daughter was born my husband started to cough. A lot. He went to the doctor who told him it was a cold and to take cough suppressant. Well, it was a “cold’ like you have never seen. He coughed day and night without stop. Nothing helped. (Take a moment and imagine what it is like to cough nonstop for weeks.) When my daughter was 5 weeks old she started to cough the same cough. As you might guess, they both had pertussis. She had to be hospitalized for three days and had to have oxygen given through her tiny nose. (Take a moment and imagine watching your 5-week old turn blue from coughing and you will understand why I am sending this out.)  Luckily we diagnosed her right away and the could give her antibiotics which helped her significantly.  My husband coughed for about 2 months.

Infants die from this. As the pertussis vaccine is not started until 2 months, the youngest of babies are the ones who are most vulnerable. While you might be willing to risk having a terrible cough for weeks on end, please consider whom you might be coughing on, and that they might have a tiny baby at home.  I urge you to get the booster.

More unbelievable hypocrisy

I just read this article in the NY Times and it made me audibly gasp.  I just can’t wrap my mind around how this president can say he supports life–more than the rest of us mind you–, and then do this.  The “this” I refer to is a new Medicaid policy where newborns born in this country (and thus, under our Constitution, citizens) are being made to apply for benefits by showing a birth certificate before receiving care.  For the past 22 years the policy (and the law) have been that an infant born to illigal immigrants in this country is automatically covered. 

The last time I went to the ER a lady came in to admitting in labor and they just sent her on up to maternity–no questions asked.  Even though I was terribly weak, I thought to myself “Thank God we are getting right on this.”  No matter how you feel about immigration, I would hope that simple kindness, simple humanity, would tell you that this was not the time for politics or for paperwork.  It is a baby coming into the world.  That trumps everything.  I don’t care if it is Eva Braun having a baby, a woman in labor deserves kindness. 

And once that baby, a U.S. citizen, is born, that baby deserves health care.  Where exactly does it get us to deny that baby care?  Hmm, let’s not treat a condition for the first three months and let’s see if it gets less expensive to treat–not likely.  These babies are citizens, so it will wind up that they are eligible for coverage, so why make it more expensive to treat them?  (Wait, I know, we are hoping that the parents will take them “back where they belong” instead of applying.  Or maybe we can get lucky and they will all die before the paperwork goes through.)

This is vindictive, cruel and short-sighted.  Not to mention directly contrary to federal law.  How can they keep getting away with this sort of thing while proclaiming their goodness, righteousness, and moral superiority?  How can Kerry’s misspeaking be bigger news than deliberate cruelty and mind-blowing hypocricy?  Why are Americans swallowing this?

Brooke is back

This just in ladies…big, bushy eyebrows are back.  In case your eyebrows don’t suddenly grow in because Vogue has issued an edict (in direct contrast to the edicts of the past 10 years), there is help:

“For those with very sparse brows, some salons offer eyebrow extensions. At LuxLash on Newbury Street in Boston, for example, Suzanne Cats, the owner, thickens brows by gluing a tiny fiber onto each existing hair. The process, which costs $75 to $250, can take 45 minutes to two hours and the false eyebrow effect lasts two weeks, she said. She also offers brow prosthetics — hairpieces for the eyebrows — in 20 different shapes and shades.”

Seriously, eyebrow merkins?  Thank god I live in the NW.

What lefty media?

I wanted to share this transcript of Soledad O’Brien interviewing Nicholas Berg’s dad.  Remember Nicholas?  He was beheaded by al-Zarqawi in a video.  I remember feeling like I was going to throw up when the story was covered way back in 2004.  Since then, of course, the media has stopped covering these sorts of things because Americans are so de-sensitized that it doesn’t really get the ratings bump that it once did…anyway, I digress.

Nicholas’s dad, Michael, seems like the kind of guy I want in my life.  An articulate, stick-to-the-point pacifist, he doesn’t let Soledad draw him into a hate-fest…and he makes some of the most eloquent anti-war arguments  I have heard.  She keeps trying to spin this as a good-news story with the hurt dad rejoicing at the killing of a terrorist…and she just doesn’t get him to go along with her.

O’BRIEN: Mr. Berg, thank you for talking with us again. It’s nice to have an opportunity to talk to you. Of course, I’m curious to know your reaction, as it is now confirmed that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the man who is widely credited and blamed for killing your son, Nicholas, is dead.

MICHAEL BERG: Well, my reaction is I’m sorry whenever any human being dies. Zarqawi is a human being. He has a family who are reacting just as my family reacted when Nick was killed, and I feel bad for that. (Watch video of the two bombs falling on al-Zarqawi — 2:00)

I feel doubly bad, though, because Zarqawi is also a political figure, and his death will re-ignite yet another wave of revenge, and revenge is something that I do not follow, that I do want ask for, that I do not wish for against anybody. And it can’t end the cycle. As long as people use violence to combat violence, we will always have violence.

O’BRIEN: I have to say, sir, I’m surprised. I know how devastated you and your family were, frankly, when Nick was killed in such a horrible, and brutal and public way.

BERG: Well, you shouldn’t be surprised, because I have never indicated anything but forgiveness and peace in any interview on the air.

O’BRIEN: No, no. And we have spoken before, and I’m well aware of that. But at some point, one would think, is there a moment when you say, ‘I’m glad he’s dead, the man who killed my son’?

BERG: No. How can a human being be glad that another human being is dead?

O’BRIEN: There have been family members who have weighed in, victims, who’ve said that they don’t think he’s a martyr in heaven, that they think, frankly, he went straight to hell …

You know, you talked about the fact that he’s become a political figure. Are you concerned that he becomes a martyr and a hero and, in fact, invigorates the insurgency in Iraq?

BERG: Of course. When Nick was killed, I felt that I had nothing left to lose. I’m a pacifist, so I wasn’t going out murdering people. But I am — was not a risk-taking person, and yet now I’ve done things that have endangered me tremendously.

I’ve been shot at. I’ve been showed horrible pictures. I’ve been called all kinds of names and threatened by all kinds of people, and yet I feel that I have nothing left to lose, so I do those things.

Now, take someone who in 1991, who maybe had their family killed by an American bomb, their support system whisked away from them, someone who, instead of being 59, as I was when Nick died, was 5-years-old or 10-years-old. And then if I were that person, might I not learn how to fly a plane into a building or strap a bag of bombs to my back?

That’s what is happening every time we kill an Iraqi, every time we kill anyone, we are creating a large number of people who are going to want vengeance. And, you know, when are we ever going to learn that that doesn’t work?

O’BRIEN: There’s an alternate reading, which would say at some point, Iraqis will say the insurgency is not OK — that they’ll be inspired by the death of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in the sense of he was turned in, for example, we believe by his own No. 2, No. 3 leadership in his ranks.

And, that’s actually them saying we do not want this kind of violence in our country. Experts whom we’ve spoken to this morning have said this is a critical moment where Iraqis need to figure out which direction the country is going to go. That would be an alternate reading to the scenario you’re pointing to. (Watch how Iraqi leaders cheered after learning about al-Zarqawi’s death — 4:31)

BERG: Yes, well, I don’t believe that scenario, because every time news of new atrocities committed by Americans in Iraq becomes public, more and more of the everyday Iraqi people who tried to hold out, who tried to be peaceful people lose it and join — what we call the insurgency, and what I call the resistance, against the occupation of one sovereign nation.

O’BRIEN: There’s a theory that a struggle for democracy, you know…

BERG: Democracy? Come on, you can’t really believe that that’s a democracy there when the people who are running the elections are holding guns. That’s not democracy.

O’BRIEN: There’s a theory that as they try to form some kind of government, that it’s going to be brutal, it’s going to be bloody, there’s going to be loss, and that’s the history of many countries — and that’s just what a lot of people pay for what they believe will be better than what they had under Saddam Hussein.

BERG: Well, you know, I’m not saying Saddam Hussein was a good man, but he’s no worse than George Bush. Saddam Hussein didn’t pull the trigger, didn’t commit the rapes. Neither did George Bush. But both men are responsible for them under their reigns of terror.

I don’t buy that. Iraq did not have al Qaeda in it. Al Qaeda supposedly killed my son.

Under Saddam Hussein, no al Qaeda. Under George Bush, al Qaeda.

Under Saddam Hussein, relative stability. Under George Bush, instability.

Under Saddam Hussein, about 30,000 deaths a year. Under George Bush, about 60,000 deaths a year. I don’t get it. Why is it better to have George Bush the king of Iraq rather than Saddam Hussein?

O’BRIEN: Michael Berg is the father of Nicholas Berg, the young man, the young businessman who was beheaded so brutally in Iraq back in May of 2004

New Game: “Asshole you hate the most”

I propose we begin a new game.  It will go like this.  Name the asshole in the world you hate the most and give the reason why.  I will go first.  Idaho big-game hunter Jim Martell.  My reasoning?  Here you go:

The first polar-grizzly bear has been discovered.  This might sound neat at first, but it is quite distressing when you think about it.  It means that grizzlies are being pushed into polar territory.  Grizzlies are endangered now.  Polar bears are not currently considered endangered but they are the first to suffer as the ice cap melts– and everyone but the leader of the free fucking world agrees that the ice cap is melting.  So basically we have two endangered species that are so threatened that they are mating.  And then we need to consider that as they inter-breed their DNA gets watered-down…oy.  This is not good. 

Now let’s look at how we know about this bear.  We know about it becuase it was killed by a sadistic fucker from Idaho with a tiny, tiny penis (hmm, do you think he is a rich Republican who drives a hummer?) who paid a native guide to take him hunting for a polar bear.  Apparently in Canada you can pay 45,000 fucking dollars to kill a beautiful, majestic, near-endangered animal on its own turf.


Mango Mania

So the other day I was in my favorite grocery store– New Seasons Market– and as I was wandering around the produce section admiring all the new delights that are starting to trickle in from local farms, I smelled it— the best scent in the world. 

Thing was, I couldn’t quite place what it was.  So I started to approach one thing at a time and take a big whiff in order to pinpoint what I was sure was my favorite scent.  First the melons– no, that wasn’t it.  Then a pinnaple– no, that wasn’t it.  Finally I saw some small peaches and stuck my nose close to the bin– these were it.

The peaches were hard and weren’t organic, so I didn’t get any.  But I understand the excitment that Indians feel when mango season arrives.  This is a great article on the frenzy in Bombay over the real deal. BTW, we are going to be able to get real Indian mangoes in the US soon.  I have read that they are unimaginably better than the mutant commercial lines we are offered here now.

I love the Shark

Our friend Jay came to visit this weekend and when he heard me raving about my Shark he asked me to post (thus is the life of a new mom– a freaking vacuum is exciting stuff these days…). 

So here it is:  I have a Shark rechargable stick vacuum and I love it.  It is light, recharges quickly, and picks up everything from bits of banana on the kitchen floor to sand on tile to general dirt on carpet.  Very inexpensive at Target. 

My god, I went to one of the best law schools in the country and this is what I do with my days…but you know, who doesn’t have dirt?