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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Lunch, Anyone?

If you're in Pittsburgh, head over to Franktuary. They have some new stuff on the menu. You can try the Barackwurst. Or maybe the Hillbasa. If you want the McCainine, you'll have to wait until fall.

At least the campaigns have this in perspective (for now):
The presidential candidates approached this contest with the same stoic determination they've shown throughout the campaign.

"We feel good about our chances in the Sausage Poll," Clinton campaign spokesman Mark Nevins said. "The Hillbasa is known to be a more accomplished sausage that is ready to be served on Day One. The Barackwurst, while impressive, simply does not offer the same robust profile as the Hillbasa."

"The people of Pennsylvania have been enjoying bratwurst for decades," said Obama campaign spokeswoman Debbie Mesloh. "This culinary delight just makes a better quality of life for the people of Pennsylvania and throughout the country. Bratwurst helps to keep America strong and prosperous."

Me? My diet says, "chicken salad." My taste buds are screaming, "NEW YORKER!!!!" Alas... I'm not in Pittsburgh.

War as Comedy?

There is a new movie out (that I shall not name) that has to do with a sticky situation where the military really needs people, and there's no draft. They have to compel the folks who already signed on the dotted line to hang around for a while longer. Unfortunate, but necessary.

Fortunately, it seems to be tanking big time this weekend ($1.6 million on opening day does not bode well for the bottom line). More fortunately, the New York Post watched so you don't have to (but reading the review is... refreshing...) (h/t Inoperable Terran)

Who Said This?

Here's a quote for you. Who said it?
"The real issue is this, qho would you rather have in charge of the defense of the United States of America, a group of people who never served a day overseas in their life, or a guy who served his country honorably and has three Purple Hearts and a Silver Star on the battlefields of Vietnam?"
Any thoughts?

Would you be surprised if I told you it wasn't a Republican? How about if I told you that it wasn't just a Democrat? What if I told you it was THE Democrat, Dr. Howard Dean?

Go ahead. Pick up your jaw. I'll wait.

Granted, he was talking about John Kerry. Funny, though, that McCain has those medals... and a few more. (h/t Hot Air)

Friday, March 28, 2008

Speaking of Quizes

This one is just scary.

You know, if I was an End Times kind of girl, I'd be a tad... intrigued by all the references comparing Obama to the Messiah. If I was an End Times kind of girl, you know...

Political Satire as a Quiz

I got an e-mail from the guy who wrote this quiz. It's funny. I just wish it was a little more interactive. Maybe I'm just lazy, I guess.

My answers were almost all Conservative or Libertarian. I did have one Liberal and one Communist answer. (Actually, I haven't made it all the way through the quiz. The boys and I made it about 1/2 way through... we'll finish it up later.)

Some of the answers are really funny (the purpose of satire, no?).

If you've got some time, go check it out. Or, check it out, bookmark it, and go through it in pieces.


I'm glad that LiveLeak is willing to keep this on the Internet, despite all the objections from the Islamists.

UPDATE: pulled it due to death threats. Pat Dollard and several others have copies online. It's out there.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Conference Calls

This morning, "Bloggers for Cornyn" had their first conference call with Senator Cornyn. (Did you notice the button in the sidebar?) It was shorter than I expected (which is a good thing, I guess... things to get done today and all that).

I did get to ask the first question, though, which was cool. (No, I wasn't picked... I just could press *1 faster than anyone else.) I thanked him for voting in favor of the DeMint Amendment which would have put a one year moratorium on earmarks (thanks for the idea, Conservative Belle), and I asked him how we could get the GOP to become the party of fiscal responsibility. He responded by saying that many of the Republican Congresscritters (my term, not his) misunderstood the bill. He saw the bill as a time out, where they could address the fundamental problems of earmarks (that they can be put in to bills without debate and somewhat anonymously). I personally would not have a problem with them just getting rid of them all together, but that's not politically feasible.

Senator Cornyn was also asked about rumors of an immigration bill coming down the pike this year. He said that he would love it if one did make it though, but he doubts that it will with the House and Senate rules as they are. (He also commented that people have said that you can't have that kind of legislation in an election year, but that- I can't remember who he was quoting- there has been an election every two years since this country was founded, and that can't be an excuse for not working on it.)

Senator Cornyn was also asked about the evangelical vote (it's important to the GOP) and how his campaign is going (great- bloggers are a very important part of his campaign).

It wasn't a bad first call. There will be more.

In the coming weeks, I'll write more about Senator Cornyn and why I've got his button in my sidebar. I'll do my best to be intellectually honest and point out where I agree and disagree with him. No candidate is the perfect candidate, but he's by far the best we have in this race.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Medal of Honor Day


In 1990, Congress declared that March 25th of each year shall be "Medal of Honor Day." Here's a message from Nicky Bacon, President of the CMOHS:

The Congress of the United States of America passed an Act on November 15, 1990, proclaiming March 25 of each year ”National Medal of Honor Day”.

The Medal of Honor is the Highest Award for Military Valor that can be given to an individual for bravery on the battlefields of war, distinguishing personal gallantry at the risk of life, above and beyond the call of duty. From it’s conception in 1863, there have been 3,456 medals awarded, and only 147 of us remain alive today.

The living recipients continue to dedicate themselves to the principles, institutions, and ideals that have created for all Americans our precious heritage.

We shall never forget the sacrifices of all those brave souls who stood with us during these battles, tribulations and actions that resulted in us recipients having the privilege to wear, for all veterans of all wars, our Nation’s Highest Award, the Medal of Honor.

Let us continue to serve America honorably, educate our youth on the true value and the cost of freedom, and remind all that a country is no stronger than the will of its people.

May God Bless America and its Great Warriors, Our Veterans..

Nicky D. Bacon, MoH
Sixteenth President, CMOHS
I don't know if it's a coincidence or not, but today, Deebow had an interesting post on Blackfive. Read below the fold. Amazing story. After reading some of the MOH citations, that sounds on par with their valor under fire. IMO, anyway.

For more stories of remarkable valor, go here.

Wednesday's Hero

This Weeks Hero Was Suggested by Kathi

Soldiers' Angels Living Legends Team
Soldiers' Angels Living Legends Team
May No Soldier Go Unloved

Living Legends began in May 2005 with a very small team of seven dedicated angels. The team's mission was to let the families and friends of fallen heroes know that we were here to support them and to honor their loved one. At the same time, they had to make sure that they were sensitive to what the family was going through. While this team has grown tremendously, they have worked very hard to maintain that same level of dedication and sensitivity. This team is staffed with trained volunteers who carry out a very difficult mission for Soldiers' Angels. Due to their dedication, Soldiers' Angels is able to honor those heroes who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation and to pay their respects and offer their deepest sympathies to the families and loved ones grieving the painful loss of their son or daughter; husband or wife; brother or sister; mom or dad; aunt or uncle; their friend.

For more information on the Soldiers' Angels Living Legends Team, you can visit their site.

TSometimes a hero is one who sacrifices everything in their life to help others. And sometimes a hero is one who sacrifices nothing more than their time.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Spin Me Right Round

... the news reader, that is.

Let's see what's going on this morning:


Monday, March 24, 2008

Southern Sayings

I found this at Delft's place. Some of these are really funny, but Southerners aren't that stupid. No, really.
40 Things Never Said By Southerners

40. Oh I just couldn't. Hell, she's only sixteen.
39. I'll take Shakespeare for 1000, Alex.
38. Duct tape won't fix that.
37. Lisa Marie was lucky to catch Michael.
36. Come to think of it, I'll have a Heineken.
35. We don't keep firearms in this house.
34. Has anybody seen the sideburns trimmer?
33. You can't feed that to the dog.
32. I thought Graceland was tacky.
31. No kids in the back of the pickup, it's just not safe.
30. Wrasslin's fake.
29. Honey, did you mail that donation to Greenpeace?
28. We're vegetarians.
27. Do you think my gut is too big?
26. I'll have grapefruit and grapes instead of biscuits and gravy.
25. Honey, we don't need another dog.
24. Who's Richard Petty?
23. Give me the small bag of pork rinds.
22. Too many deer heads detract from the decor.
21. Spittin is such a nasty habit.
20. I just couldn't find a thing at Walmart today.
19. Trim the fat off that steak.
18. Cappuccino tastes better than espresso.
17. The tires on that truck are too big.
16. I'll have the arugula and radicchio salad.
15. I've got it all on the C drive.
14. Unsweetened tea tastes better.
13. Would you like your salmon poached or broiled?
12. My fiance, Bobbie Jo, is registered at Tiffany's.
11. I've got two cases of Zima for the Super Bowl.
10. Little Debbie snack cakes have too many fat grams.
09. Checkmate.
08. She's too young to be wearing a bikini.
07. Does the salad bar have bean sprouts?
06. Hey, here's an episode of "Hee Haw" that we haven't seen.
05. I don't have a favorite college team.
04. Be sure to bring my salad dressing on the side.
03. I believe you cooked those green beans too long.
02. Those shorts ought to be a little longer, Darla.
01. Nope, no more for me. I'm drivin tonight.

Freedom Never Cries

Five For Fighting isn't my favorite group out there, but this song is pretty good. (The video raises money for charity, too.)

Late Night Bad Movie Question

Well, evidently this wasn't a bad movie when it came out- it was nominated for an Oscar (fortunately, not for special effects).

My question is this: In the movies, when a meteoroid (or an asteroid or a comet) is on a crash course with Earth, why do Hong Kong and/or New York City always get hit before the heroes can save the planet?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

His Resurrection

But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they went to the tomb, taking the spices they had prepared. And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they went in they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling apparel. And as they were frightened and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise.” And they remembered his words, and returning from the tomb they told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest. (Luke 24:1-9)

Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied. But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. (1 Corinthians 15:12-22)

Saturday, March 22, 2008

His Burial

Now there was a man named Joseph, from the Jewish town of Arimathea. He was a member of the council, a good and righteous man, who had not consented to their decision and action; and he was looking for the kingdom of God. This man went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Then he took it down and wrapped it in a linen shroud and laid him in a tomb cut in stone, where no one had ever yet been laid. It was the day of Preparation, and the Sabbath was beginning. The women who had come with him from Galilee followed and saw the tomb and how his body was laid. Then they returned and prepared spices and ointments.

On the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment. (Luke 23:50-56)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Want The Good News or the Bad News?

The bad news is that the JV boys lost their game. I'm quite proud of them, though. They played tough, making the team win instead of just rolling over and playing defeated.

The good news is that the Varsity won their game by 16 and, therefore, their division. They got a cool trophy and a banner.

We'll be heading back toward Texas tomorrow morning.

His Death

And when they came to the place that is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on his right and one on his left. And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” And they cast lots to divide his garments. And the people stood by, watching, but the rulers scoffed at him, saying, “He saved others; let him save himself, if he is the Christ of God, his Chosen One!” The soldiers also mocked him, coming up and offering him sour wine and saying, “If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!” There was also an inscription over him, “This is the King of the Jews.”

One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, “Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!" But the other rebuked him, saying, “Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”

It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour, while the sun's light failed. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this he breathed his last. Now when the centurion saw what had taken place, he praised God, saying, “Certainly this man was innocent!” (Luke 23:33-47)

This Weekend

Oft times during December, people whine and complain about "the Reason for the Season," and rightly so. I find it odd that there isn't quite the same uproar in the Spring. Shouldn't there be?

After all, this is the weekend that Christians celebrate the death and ressurection of our Lord and Savior. There isn't a more solemn an occasion, and yet, on Good Friday, no one notices. Sure, there are plenty of reasons to rejoice on Easter morning- Jesus rose from the dead. We just seem to forget how He got there in the first place.

No, this isn't going to be a sermon or a Bible study or anything like that. It's more of a... reminder.

In a nutshell, humanity screwed up. Blame Adam, blame Eve, blame free will- that's what the guilty do- they throw blame around. Throughout history, there has been only one person who didn't put themselves before God (and He was hung on a tree for His effort). Everyone is separated from God and his Grace and Mercy.

Let me put it bluntly. I screwed up. I have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God. I deserve whatever punishment Jesus decides to give me. I needed a sin sacrifice to get "right" with God- and Jesus was it. He died for me. And you. And everyone else. He died to save us from eternal damnation and separation from Him. And then, to show that He was who He said He was, He walked out of a tomb three days later.

By now, everyone is saying, "well, duh." We all know that, right? Then why is Easter all about chocolate and colored eggs and bunnies and new bonnets? Why isn't it a time of reflection and confession, faith and forgiveness? Where did the Cross go?

Sure, I'd love to throw this all on Hallmark's lap. It would be easier, wouldn't it? But all of this started long before they decided to capitalize on the situation. Can't say I blame them, really.

Now, don't go throwing out the chocolate bunnies and jelly beans (unless you're giving them to me, that is). I'm just saying that you should spend some time reflecting on the Reason for the Season.

Mom's Nervous

And by "Mom," I mean ME.

Unless something changes by 2:30 pm Eastern, both the JV and Varsity boys' teams will play at the same time. The problem? We have 12 players here between both teams. You do the math.

Why does that make me nervous? The easy out is "I'm a mom; it's my job." But seriously, the guys with the least playing time will suddenly get a LOT of playing time. I think everyone's just a little nervous.

Open Mouth...

... insert entire leg...

So... Granny is a typical white person? Sure, he was trying to say that good people can hold biases. uh-huh... Just like you, Barack? You seem to have some interesting biases concerning white folks.

At this rate, Hillary will get the nomination at the convention easily. But, dang, he would have written McCain's ad for him...

Thursday, March 20, 2008

News From The Not-So-Big Dance

Our sports update:

The good news is that the girls got 4th place (and the praise of several coaches because they "played with heart") in the tournament. The bad news is that there were 4 JV girls teams.

The JV boys play tomorrow for 3rd place in their division.

Also tomorrow, the Varsity boys play for the championship in their division.

And I could really use a nap.

Nite, all!!!

That Doesn't Mean What You Think It Does

I just finished reading this article, and I asked the boys about the title- 'Mandatory' volunteerism?Is it time yet?" T1's response was something along the lines of "if it's mandatory, then it isn't volunteering." Smart kid.

Before I rip into the article, let's talk about the words. After all, words mean things, right? So... after a quick check with , we have the following information:
man·da·to·ry [man-duh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] adjective, noun, plural -ries. –adjective
1.authoritatively ordered; obligatory; compulsory: It is mandatory that all students take two years of math.
2.pertaining to, of the nature of, or containing a command.
3.Law. permitting no option; not to be disregarded or modified: a mandatory clause.
4.having received a mandate, as a nation.
vol·un·teer·ism [vol-uhn-teer-iz-uhm] –noun
1.voluntarism (def. 2).
2.the policy or practice of volunteering one's time or talents for charitable, educational, or other worthwhile activities, esp. in one's community.

vol·un·teer [vol-uhn-teer] –noun
1.a person who voluntarily offers himself or herself for a service or undertaking.
2.a person who performs a service willingly and without pay.

Sorry to take up so much space with something that seems painfully obvious to everyone (except Rhonda B. Graham, evidently). The moment you make an activity compulsory, it cannot be considered voluntary- the terms are mutually exclusive.

I'm not arguing the concept she's supporting (yet). I'm arguing words. Call it something else, but not "mandatory volunteering." That's just sloppy use of the English language.

The concept of compulsory community service isn't new, and it isn't necessarily bad in all cases. Israel requires service of some sort (either in the military or in some other capacity if they are religiously unable to serve in the military). It works. Many high schools in the US are now requiring a certain amount of community service in order to graduate. But no where does any of there ever even hint that this is a voluntary process- it is a mandatory requirement (for citizenship or graduation , whichever the case may be).

There are those on both sides of the political aisle who would love to see some type of compulsory service go into effect. Liberals want "compulsory service" to mean almost anything but military service and either see it as a way to feel good about their country (as Ms. Graham feels) or as a way to strip away all classes and make that communist Utopia they so desperately long for. Republicans ( I can't really call them conservatives) seem to either want some kind of responsibility to go along with the privilege of voting or just want today's young people to think about someone other than themselves for more than a nanosecond. Some would go so far as to invoke Robert Heinlein when it comes to military service and voting privilege. (The "Service guarantees citizenship" in Starship Troopers boiled down to "if you want to vote, you must be a citizen, and if you want to be a citizen, then you must serve in the military," and some folks today agree with Heinlein on that subject.)

Ms. Graham points out that Ronald Reagan coined the phrase volunteerism (I suppose to get Republicans to actually pay attention to her writing). The problem with her invoking Reagan is that I doubt she ever read what he thought about volunteering.
"No matter how big and powerful government gets, and the many services it provides, it can never take the place of volunteers."

"The work of volunteer groups throughout our country represents the very heart and soul of America. They have helped make this the most compassionate, generous, and humane society that ever existed on the face of this earth."
Does that sound like mandatory service? What makes America great (and what Ms. Graham has missed by a mile) is our giving spirit. We want to help others. Show a need, and Americans will fill that need. We are a caring, compassionate lot for the most part.

That's not what Ms. Graham is talking about. She's not endorsing compassionate responses to seen needs. There is another term for what she's advocating, and I'm not sure she'll be thrilled to hear it- slavery. Forcing people to work without payment for the benefit of others is a definition of slavery, is it not?

Well... at least I'm Cool... says I'm a Cool Nerd Queen.  What are you?  Click here!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

An Evening of Fun and Frivolity

For those of you in the Pittsburgh area, you still have time to get to the dinosaur statue at the library for the march. What am I talking about? Why, the anniversary march and hostile takeover, of course!
On Wednesday, March 19, POG will be holding a torch-lit march to a modern day castle of abominations—our local military recruiting station. If the station remains open, we intend to evict it and everything inside of it, occupy the location, and transform it into something useful for the community. We'll also be bringing a movable cage in which to confine military recruiters until they no longer pose a danger to our friends and neighbors. Of course, the station may be closed and recruiters may flee or hide behind the police apparatus that enables the war to continue. That is often the case, and we've seen in the past the overwhelming resources the state directs against these anniversary events because of their importance as a symbol of dissent. We believe in acting effectively, in confronting the war, at times and places of our choosing. When the state brings the resources necessary to suppress direct action against the war, it makes sense to hold a symbolic protest, and we still consider that a success, as it exposes the reality that it is ultimately on the local level that our countries war policy will be decided.
Wow. They're trying to out-Berkeley Berkeley. They're going to march to a recruiting station (which is probably closed after 6pm) evict anyone and anything in the station, and cage any recruiters who might be working late. They'll try to get arrested, too. And, if by chance they can't accomplish any of their tasks (which is the most likely outcome), they'll still consider it a success, just because they tried. How... cute.

So... is there anyone in the PIttsburgh area who could go and... you know... provide some moral support? For the recruiters, of course. Block the entrance to the recruiting station, plaster huge patriotic signs all over the place, shout over the morons... something (all legal of course). Of course, if there are too many of you compared to the fruit loops, y'all can just pull up a lawn chair, grab some popcorn, and enjoy the show.

Do it for me? Please?

Why Us?

Here is another post that I started to write but never finished. The original date on this one was "9/5/05".
"Why is all of this happening to our generation?"

That was the question that T2 asked me yesterday. I asked him what he meant.He mentioned the tsunami, Hurricane Katrina, 9/11, the War on Terror... stuff like that...

I had to think a minute. There has been a lot of horrific events dumped on this generation of youth... more than just what he mentioned- serial murders... child abductions and murders... abuse scandals... all announced on the news nightly, hourly even. But... is it any more than previous generations?

Born around the time of the first World War, my grandparents came of age during the Great Depression. Then they became the Greatest Generation during World War II. My parents, born during or shortly after WWII, grew up during the ramp up for the Cold War and entered adulthood during the Viet Nam conflict. Me? I was born at the end of the crazy 60s, grew up as the Cold War became a way of life, and I became an adult as the Evil Empire was crumbling. My sister's generation (born 9 years after me) doesn't remember the Cold War, may or may not remember the Berlin Wall falling, and came of age during an era of technological and scientific advancement that is astounding to think about. Through all of this, every generation had hurricanes, tsunamis, tornados, war, hatred, and evil. So... what's the difference?

The media. The Information Age. Technology. That's the difference. We are made instantly aware of everything that's going on. During WWII, folks got their news from 3 sources- the radio, the newspapers, and the news reels that played before movies at the theater. That's it. During the 60s and 70s, you could replace the news reels with television news broadcasts (on the 3 or maybe 4 stations that you could pick up with the rabbit ear antenna). In the 80s, cable was introduced, and then satellite television. Now, on my little ole tv, I have 4 cable news channels, plus 6 stations that offer local news (4 from Austin, plus the "super stations" on cable). My parents have satellite tv, and I have NO idea how many news sources they have access to.

That's the difference- it's not that more is happening... we just know about more of it...

But... all of that made me think... how do these events... these major global events... affect the generation that grows up during them? The Great Depression greatly shaped the Greatest Generation. The 60s defined the Boomers (correctly or not) as the Hippie Generation. The Cold War, economic booms and recessions, and the collapse of the Soviet Union shaped my generation. My little sister's generation has grown up in a changing world, embracing the new technology and trying not to laugh at "the old days."

The world is a little smaller for the boys' generation (compared to my generation). Other cultures aren't quite as foreign as they used to be. How will that affect their generation?

I guess we'll just have to wait and see.

Just Wonderin'...

If I was to wait until we get back on Terra Texas to write up a Fisk™ on Obama's speech and a short post on my opinions of DC v Heller, would anyone care anymore? In this 24/7 news cycle, I fear this will be way old news by then.


Wednesday's Hero

Spc. Monica Lin Brown
Spc. Monica Lin Brown
19 years old from Lake Jackson, Texas
4th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team

Army Spc. Monica Lin Brown has done something only a very few female soldiers in American history have ever done. She's been awarded the Silver Star.

Brown saved the lives of fellow soldiers after a roadside bomb tore through a convoy of Humvees in the eastern Paktia province of Afghanistan in April 2007. "I did not really think about anything except for getting the guys to a safer location and getting them taken care of and getting them out of there."

"We stopped the convoy. I opened up my door and grabbed my aid bag," Brown said.

She started running toward the burning vehicle as insurgents opened fire. All five wounded soldiers had scrambled out.

"I assessed the patients to see how bad they were. We tried to move them to a safer location because we were still receiving incoming fire," Brown said. "So we dragged them for 100 or 200 meters, got them away from the Humvee a little bit," she said. "I was in a kind of a robot-mode, did not think about much but getting the guys taken care of."

For Brown, who knew all five wounded soldiers, it became a race to get them all to a safer location. Eventually, they moved the wounded some 500 yards away and treated them on site before putting them on a helicopter for evacuation.

"I did not really have time to be scared," Brown said. "Running back to the vehicle, I was nervous (since) I did not know how badly the guys were injured. That was scary."

The military said Brown's "bravery, unselfish actions and medical aid rendered under fire saved the lives of her comrades and represents the finest traditions of heroism in combat."

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

News From the Bleachers

So... we're finished with 2 days of the basketball tournament. The good news? The kids are having a great time. The bad news? Out of 6 games that our teams (JV and V Boys and JV Girls) have played, they have one win (Yay, Varsity!) There were also 5 players (2 girls and 3 boys) who signed up for the 3-Point contest. 2 of the boys qualified to go on the next round, but they got knocked out pretty quick. Did I mention they're having fun?

Tomorrow will be a full day. In the morning, we're having a recruiting seminar (and then lunch) with the folks from Liberty University. I don't know a whole lot about the school (except that it's a little bit bigger than I expected), so I'm going in with an open mind. I mean, the odds of my kids going to school here are... not favorable to the school, but it can never hurt to listen to them (especially since they're buying lunch). Then we have 4 games and a surprise birthday party.

Hope y'all are having a good week. We are!

Girls, Sports, and the Bible

Since I'm at a basketball tournament this week (with a girls' team), this post seems... apropos. First, I'll show you the draft of a post I started three years ago. After that, I'll wrap it up with some additional thoughts.

Here's the original draft:
Girls, Sports and the Bible

Yes, evidently, they are all tied together. (I got this from my godless heathen friend - his phrase, not mine- because he likes to point out to me when Christians go around making us all look like nuts.) Hmm... one disclaimer before I begin. The Bible is open to interpretation in some areas, and I don't want to imply that the author of the article I'll reference doesn't have the best of intentions. I just think that, sometimes, in order to study the Bible, you need to take the text, the cultural background, and the original target audience into consideration.

To make this easier, please go read the whole article. I'm not going to quote the whole thing.

Done? Okay, let's dive in, shall we?
I think this should give us strong reason to pause and consider the question, “Should women participate in sports?”
Hmm... does the Bible say anything at all about sports? About volleyball? Didn't think so. So, we can't just pull a verse out of our hats to justify one position or the other. Let's see what Mr. Jonas has to say.
For those of us who believe we should train our daughters according to Titus 2, 1 Peter 3, and other Biblical passages, my answer is “Yes, it is not good.” I propose that sports greatly hinders the development of godly, Biblical, feminine character. Parents today expend extraordinary amounts of time and energy taking their daughters from one sports event to another, week after week, even to the point where it exhausts the family and family resources. The fruits we see are that today’s Christian women are often ill-prepared to be Biblically obedient wives and mothers. This brings to mind a couple of questions: “Why do we spend so much time preparing our daughters to play sports?" and "What does it prepare them for in the future?” My answer is that sports prepare women to be more like men. Instead of spending all that time preparing our daughters as the Bible directs, we are training them to be like men so they can better compete with men in traditionally masculine roles - i.e., compete with them in the workforce, in politics, in the military, and in sports.
First off, parents "expend extraordinary amounts of time and energy" taking their daughters and sons to sporting events, exhausting family resources . One could easily argue that the number of activities that kids are involved these days (not just sports, but Scouting and clubs and music lessons and... and... and...) isn't healthy for families, whether they have sons or daughters or both. I presume that the author means that the daughter's sporting events are a waste of time because it teaches the wrong things, whereas a son's sporting events are important because it teaches discipline and team work and more masculine traits.

What does Titus 2 (Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.- Titus 2:3-5) have to do with soccer or volleyball? I would think that sports would be a great opportunity for older women to instill traits of discipline and perseverance into younger women. As for 1 Peter 3, that is all about a wife being submissive to her husband. Once again, what does that have to do with girls playing sports? (I know, he gets into that later... doesn't mean that I'm not confused by the verses he uses.) And, as for preparing girls to be "Biblically obedient wives and mothers," and "how does it prepare them for the future?" it does so by teaching time management (practice, schoolwork, chores, etc), how to get along with others, and yes, how to be obedient. Let's face it, you don't obey the rules, you're on the bench.

He claims that sports prepares women to be more like men, preparing them to compete with men in the workforce, in the military, in politics, and in sports. I hate to break it to him, but women have been doing that for centuries, and even received praise in the Bible for it (see here and here and here, for starts.) Ok, maybe not in sports. But, except for the Greeks, there wasn't much of an interest in sports in general except as a childhood amusement until a little over a hundred years ago. Until the Industrial Revolution, no one had time for such frivolity.
Actually, I don’t have a problem with women playing recreational sports on an occasional basis, just with them playing competitive sports on a regular day-to-day basis. This rigorous physical and mental training tends to make women more masculine. I think it is prudent to often ask ourselves “Can a woman do this activity and retain a Biblically feminine character?” With sports I think it will be difficult in most cases.
How is that difficult? If Christian parents are training their daughters in a Godly manner to begin with, then the training as an athlete can used as a tool, teaching discipline and a desire for excellence. As for making women more masculine, while that might be true in some sports (and yes, I have a problem with girls playing certain co-ed sports), in most sports, that's just not the case. The physical activity might take away a little of the body fat, making them a little less "soft and cuddly" (which he mentions later), but it makes them more physically fit, fulfilling the Biblical mandate to take care of your body, because it is the Temple of the Holy Spirit. (And, on a personal, anecdotal note, I'd like any of you who question female athletes not being Biblically feminine to ask my sister-in-law's husband what he thinks. She was active in sports in high school, then she took up running, and she and her husband have participated in triathalons together- not to compete against one another, but as something to do together.)
The Bible talks about women developing a quiet and gentle spirit; I think sports fosters anything but that. They instead develop a competitive and contentious spirit that will cause them to have great difficulty in their marriages. I already mentioned that the effort expended on sports will hinder the development of wifely duties around the home; even worse is when a man has to compete against his own wife in the workplace and community.
He says that playing sports hinders the development of "wifely duties" around the home. Is he saying that sports prevent girls from learning how to perform those duties? I'd like to point out that "wifely duties" that used to take all day (washing, cooking, etc.) take a fraction of the time, now. Learning how to clean a house doesn't take very long. (I'm almost willing to grant him the point on cooking, but I don't think that girls aren't learning to cook because they're in sports. They're not learning how to cook because their moms are working outside the home and don't want to cook or don't have the time to teach their daughters to cook.) And, because of the ease of housework today (yeah, I say "ease" right now because I'm sitting at a computer and not washing clothes using a washboard), women actually need sports or some other form of exercise in order to stay healthy.

I don't really understand how playing sports in high school will make a woman compete with her husband in the marketplace. I'm sorry, but to say that a woman who plays sports is somehow a threat to her husband is ridiculous- that's a sign of a man with low self esteem who doesn't really understand his Biblical place in the world. I would think a man would want a wife who exhibits the self-confidence that comes with sport participation.
Well, how did I do? Rereading the post, I have to admit I found one error (at least). A sport ( running) is mentioned in the Bible (here, here, here and here). It's used as a metaphor for our lives as Christians, trying to do our best.

I stand by what I wrote back then. Some thoughts I had while reading...
The author did have some valid point. Uniforms for some sports are less than modest. Some sports are wholly inappropriate for girls. Girls and boys competing against each other in most sports is a bad idea.

Then again, the author was way off on some of his points. Allowing a girl to participate in competitive sports is not necessarily contrary to raising a Godly daughter. It isn't some slippery slope to be avoided at all costs. Once again, it comes down to parental responsibility. If you're doing your job as a parent, letting your daughter play sports isn't going to turn her into a rowdy, disobedient harpy who makes her husband miserable.

Thoughts? Anyone?

Monday, March 17, 2008



You guessed it. Today is St. Patrick's Day. Surprisingly, St. Patrick didn't found Guinness or perfect the recipe for corned beef and cabbage. He also didn't drive the snakes out of Ireland. He was a man of amazing faith.

If you're Catholic, wear green today. Protestants should don the orange. Everyone, raise a pint.


Sunday, March 16, 2008

A SBC Baptist's Declaration

Well, well, well... I had started a pretty decent rant on a news article that ran earlier this week. I'm going to finish it and post it as a part of this piece, but I wanted to point something out. The "declaration" was a criticism of the SBC, not a "declaration" by the SBC. They were quick to put up a "it wasn't us" statement on their website. Maybe they're a little smarter than 3 of their former presidents and 43 other dummkopfs. (Then again, they do have their own statement which I haven't gotten around to reading... they could very well be a whole herd of dummkopfs when it comes to climate change. )I just wanted everyone to know that this isn't a SBC fiasco- this is a 46 dingbat fiasco. There you go.

OK... onto the rant.

Quite a while ago, I summed up my opinions on Christianity and the environment here. In a nutshell (and I might be adding to what I wrote back then): We have an obligation to be good stewards of the gifts God gave us. One of the gifts we were given is a brain, and we should use it to make reasoned decisions concerning how we take care of the rest of the gifts. Common sense protection of all the gifts is preferable to fanatical devotion to one cause or another.

This week, "A Southern Baptist Declaration on the Environment and Climate Change" was released. Instead of copying and pasting large chunks of the declaration to make my points, just go read it. I'll wait.

Done? OK... so... from the SBC statement, I have the 4 main points of the declaration which I will address individually.
  1. Human beings have a responsibility to care for creation and acknowledge their participation in environmental decline.

    I can almost buy this one. But human beings, especially in the United States, are already leading the charge when it comes to cleaning up the environment. Travel around the world and you'll marvel at the cleanliness and beauty of our country. We're not perfect, but we're far from the pariahs we're made out to be.

  2. Addressing climate change is prudent.

    According to who? Climate change is as old as... well, as old as Methuselah. There has always been climate change. Ever hear of an Ice Age? There obviously had to have some sort of "global warming" at some point in time because we'd still be an Ice Age otherwise. Did SUVs cause the last warming period (in the early 1000s)? Just wondering.

    If you strip away the activist rhetoric, you have scientific theories. Those theories on climate change revolve around things like sun spots and volcanic ash. SUVs and carbon credits are no where to be found, in case you were curious.

  3. Stewardship of the earth is required by Christian and Southern Baptist beliefs.

    Finally, something we agree on! Next!

  4. Individuals, churches, communities and governments should act now.

    And do what? Bow to the Goracle? Buy into junk science? Drive a Prius? Sell carbon credits? Pass a law?

So... they bought into the hype. The environmentalists, who are more about communism then conservation, have managed a few more converts. I have no idea what "compelling evidence" the "declaration" signers looked at, but it wasn't sound science- it was "concensus science." Honestly, it sounds like they listened to some charlatan engaging in some hellfire and brimstone preaching. If they had bothered to do just a little more research (google is their friend), they would have found plenty of reason to pause. But it was just so dang compelling, right?

Back in the 1970s, we were told that, if we didn't "do something," we'd be in the middle of an Ice Age by 2000. Somehow, in 30 years or so, we've gone from the deep freeze to the oven. Now, if we don't "do something," we'll all fry within 50 years. I know what we can do... let's just wait. It worked last time!

Sure. I guess you can say I'm a denier. Then again, I'm also a flat earth denier. And a geocentrism denier. Let's not forget "hollow earth" theory. Newtonian gravity theory? Deny, deny, deny. Get the point?

"So, where do you find your ideas for your denier propaganda?" I hear you ask. Great question! First, take this quiz to see how much you don't know about Global Warming. Then start your studying here. Once you finish and understand what the activists are really trying to prove, then dive into the science here and here. And here. Don't forget here. Need more? There's always something new coming around the bend, so... google is your friend, too.

In closing, I'll give the signers of the declaration a simple piece of advice. Leave the science to the scientists... that's why they're called that.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Channel Surfing for Inspiration

Many people surf the internet when they have trouble sleeping. Others channel surf. It's all about riding the waves, I guess. I usually fall into the latter category because, if I start in on the computer, I might never get to sleep.

Occasionally, while channel hopping, I come across Pastor Melissa Scott teaching. She doesn't really preach, she's pretty much teaching Biblical Greek. Or so it seems to me. I have no idea what her credentials are (other than she's the widow of Dr. Gene Scott- interesting guy, to say the least). She stands on the stage, pile of texts at her side, dry erase boards behind her, translating and explaining the chosen Scripture of the day. (Does she get it right? I have no idea. I took Spanish, not Greek.)

I saw her the other night, and she got me thinking about the TwoDragon clan and the (dare I say it?) miraculous things that have been going on in their lives. As part of his study, Eric is comparing Bible translations to each other and to the Greek and Hebrew (which he seems to be learning in the process). I have to admire his determination to learn it all.

Which brings me to the "inspiration" part of this. Most Christians simply trust the Bible translation handed to us (by our particular denomination, by a well-meaning friend, or based on the recommendation by the nice girl at the bookstore). Which one is the closest to the original? Which is the farthest? Personally, I have... at least 6 different translations of the Bible sitting on my bookshelf, and I have web resources bookmarked so I can access I have no idea how many more.

To find the best translation, you can trust the scholars who know the original languages, or you can translate it yourself. Needless to say, 99.999% of folks out there trust the scholars. It's just easier that way. But I've been thinking...

No, I'm not signing up for Beginning koiné at the local seminary... at least not tomorrow. I suppose I could follow Eric's example... or maybe convince the boys that they want to take Greek or Hebrew as their foreign language next year... but this has definitely given me something to think about...

Until then, maybe Eric can tell me if Melissa Scott has a clue...

Basketball and Blogging

As this post publishes, my kids and I will be on our way to a homeschool basketball tournament at Liberty University. I'll watch at least 15 basketball games in 5 days, attend a surprise birthday party for the boys' coach, and hang out with Kat for a while. I should be back in the Lone Star State sometime Saturday.

This is going to be an interesting week. The players on both teams are great kids. There are 15 boys (JV and Varsity) and 7 girls going, along with 7 moms, 3 dads, several siblings, a couple of grandparents, and a puppy making the trip. Someone's bringing an X-box, there will be several decks of cards, and who knows what else (Airsoft and Super-Soakers have been forbidden). No, I'm not planning on seeing my kids much off the court.

Oh, yeah... and I need to dust off my copy of Basketball for Dummies because I will probably be doing the books for at least one game. Scared yet?

So... if I'm somewhere between Texas and Virginia, how did I get this to post? Blogger's testing a new feature where you can schedule posts. I tested it on Wednesday with my Wednesday's Hero post, and it worked great. (You didn't really think I was awake at 6am to post that, did you?)

Of course, I have the laptop with me, and supposedly the hotel we're staying at has wi-fi, but I'm afraid there will be a charge for it. If that's the case, I'll be hunting all around Liberty University for a coffee shop with wi-fi. Just in case I can't find one , I've prepared a few little tidbits to publish during the week. Granted, it won't be "current", but I hope you'll enjoy them anyway.

If you're off the praying sort, please pray for safe travel for the team and a safe and fun week for the kids. Also, on a slightly selfish note, pray for the boys' playing. (My kids have come a long way this season, mostly on defense. Unfortunately, they haven't really had a lot of opportunities to take a shot, and have yet to score a basket in a game. They'd really like to change that, especially in the tournament.)

Have a great few days!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Pass The Popcorn!

No, there aren't any good movies (that I can tell) coming out this week, so I'm looking forward to summer. I'm one of those weird chicks who like the action/adventure movies. And we have 3 on the horizon that have promise.

First, Iron Man.

Next, Indy's back.

And, finally... The Dark Knight.

The trailers on the websites are better than these little boxes, of course.

There are a few other movies that will be released in the next couple of months that have my interest, but not to the level of these three. (And this one is off the table if there isn't a non-3D version.)

It's going to be an interesting summer.

Shining the Flashlight on the Bugs

The Democrat controlled Congress has been blaming President Bush for all the problems our economy seems to be experiencing right now. Well, Neal had an interesting video in his "required reading" list today (no, we won't point that out to Neal... it'll just confuse him).

In case you don't want to watch the whole video (it's 5 minutes long), here are the highlights.

Since the Democrats took control of Congress, the following has happened:
That's just a few of the tidbits. Then Representative Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) goes on to discuss certain earmarks that the Dems have on the list (including building an ark and a Charlie Rangel Center). Granted, the GOP isn't all lily white when it comes to earmarks, but at least many of them are trying.

This video is quite informative. Too bad most Americans won't see it. Or won't care if they do.

Quite The Comeback

David Paterson, New York's current Lt. Governor (and soon to be Governor) had his first press conference since the whole Spitzer nightmare broke. He's quite the witty guy. He started with a couple of zingers.
Mr. Paterson entered the room at 2:06 p.m. and faced warm applause. The full text of Mr. Paterson’s initial statement, before taking questions, is below:

Thank you very much. If most of you weren’t being paid I’d be flattered by that. [Laughter]

... I am prepared and on Monday, at 1 p.m., I will have the oath of office administered to me in the Assembly chamber. Most of you are invited.
He then continued his statement, and then took questions. One reporter, trying to get the whole mess out of the way, asked him if Mr. Paterson had ever visited a prostitute. His answer was cute, to say the least:
Mr. Paterson quipped: Only the lobbyists. [Laughter] That’s why we want campaign finance. [Laughter]
UPDATE: I added the link... duh...

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Just Having a Little Fun, Officer!

(h/t to Deborah) This is just awesome. I can imagine some of the OFPAC* guys doing something like this:
Working people frequently ask retired people what they do to make their days interesting.

Well, for example, the other day I went downtown and into a shop. I was only there for about 5 minutes, and when I came out, there was a cop writing out a parking ticket.

I said to him, "Come on, man, how about giving a retired person a break"? He ignored me and continued writing the ticket. I called him a "Nazi."

He glared at me and wrote another ticket for having worn tires. So I called him a "doughnut eating Gestapo."

He finished the second ticket and put it on the windshield with the first. Then he wrote a third ticket. This went on for about 20 minutes.

The more I abused him the more tickets he wrote.

Personally, I didn't care. I came downtown on the bus, and the car that he was putting the tickets on had a bumper sticker that said, "Hillary in ' 08."

I try to have a little fun each day now that I'm retired. It's important to my health.
*OFPAC= "Old Farts Political Action Committee"

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

King Maker?

Here's an interesting article by a journalist who covered Senator Obama while he was in the Illinois Legislature.

Why "King Maker"? Well, if Mr. Jones decided to make a US Senator out of a less than accomplished Illinois State Senator (Obama)... who is trying to make a President out of a less than accomplished US Senator?

Just askin' is all...

Wednesday's Hero

Sgt. Steve Morin Jr.
Sgt. Steve Morin Jr.
34 years old from Arlington, Texas
111th Engineer Battalion, 36th Infantry Division, Texas Army National Guard
September 28, 2005

From the time he finished high school, Sgt. Steve Morin Jr. made serving in the military his career.

"He always stood up for what he thought was right," Gwendolyn Michelle Morin, his wife, said. "He was a fighter. He would never give up." "He had called me to let me know what he was going to do that day," she said. He expected to be able to call her more often because of the missions he was being assigned. Sometimes they would go 11 or 12 days between calls.

Morin enlisted in the Navy after graduating high school in his hometown of Brownfield, Texas at 17. By 34, Morin had devoted 14 years to the Navy, served in the National Guard for two and planned to attend Officers Candidate School. Morin was still in the Navy when he met his wife. At the time, the two were working for a photo company; he was Santa Claus and she was an elf, she said. Both were attending Texas Tech University. "It was funny because we always kept running into each other. He would hang outside my classes and wait for me with a Diet Coke," recalled Gwendolyn. "He knew how to make me really happy."

Sgt. Morin died when an IED went off, overturning the vehicle he was riding in near Umm Qasr, Iraq.

"He's very strong willed, very determined. Humorous, a clown, but he was also very disciplined and very passionate about what he believed in," Gwendolyn Morin said. "He always wanted to serve his country."

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

An Inspirational Tale

There's no doubt that I don't agree with Steve Novick on just about everything politically, but I've got to admire him on a personal level.

Being born without a left hand or fibula bones in his legs didn't seem to stop him from achieving his goals. When he was 14 the local schools closed for a time, so he enrolled at the University of Oregon. He graduated from their Honors College when he was 18, and then from Harvard Law when he was 21. (What does that say about the public school system when a kid, on his own volition, can skip high school all together and graduate from college with honors?)

I love his light-hearted attitude about his physical differences from the norm (can you even call them disabilites?). I mean, someone who uses this as a campaign sign can be all that gloomy, right?


Then there's his campaign ad "A Beer with Steve."

Like I said, I don't agree with him politically. Have a beer with him? Sure, I might just do that.

(h/t to Uncle Jimbo at Blackfive)


I found this at Hooah Wife and Friends. Priceless.

There is far too much comic goodness for me to point it all out. So, I'll leave you with this quote (and to any Marines who might be reading this- trust me. It makes sense and isn't a slam on y'all... you should know me better than that by now).
Semper fi, Code Pink. Semper fi.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Another Gygax post

I'm not even a D&D fan, but I find many of the tribute cartoons humorous. Kate had one here. After listening to T1 & T2 talk (endlessly, it seems at times) about rules, this just made me chuckle.

Another Mean Mommie Alert

Personally, I think he's getting off easy.
Adam Clark, 16, was pulled over going 107 mph in a 55-mph zone; neither the police nor his mother were pleased.

Adam's mother, Heidi Wisniewski, not only took his car away, but also made him a sign to show outside of his school every morning and every afternoon.

Adam said he got some strange looks and laughs from classmates at Merritt Island High School, but said he accepts his punishment. Despite the humiliation, he said he isn't mad at his mother.

"She was mad," Adam said. "She gave me the silent treatment. But I think I deserve my car getting taken away and everything."

He was forced to hold a sign reading, "I was stupid. I drove over 100 mph and got caught. Thank God! I could have killed me and my friends."
Yeah, you were stupid, Adam. Your mom's punishment is a good start. Let's see if you learn from your stupidity.

What in the World

... is going on today? I mean, besides Hillary's aide comparing Barry to Ken Starr and Barry's aide calling Hillary a monster (the aide has since resigned). Man, this year is going to drag on forever.


Wednesday, March 05, 2008

I Hope This Doesn't Blow Up in the GOP's Face

It's news time. I bet you can figure out which news story my title refers to, right?


Wednesday's Heroes

Chief Warrant Officer Mark O'SteenChief Warrant Officer Thomas GibbonsStaff Sgt. Daniel L. Kisling Jr.SSgt. Gregory M. Frampton

Pictured Left to Right
Chief Warrant Officer Mark O'Steen, 43 years old from Ozark, Alabama
Chief Warrant Officer Thomas Gibbons, 31 years old from Prince Frederick, Maryland
Staff Sgt. Daniel L. Kisling Jr., 31 years old from Neosho, Missouri
SSgt. Gregory M. Frampton, 37 years old from Fresno, California

1st Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regimen
January 30, 2003

"They succeeded where lesser men failed," said Chaplain Robert Glazener. "They proved themselves in ways that men out there who never served, never volunteered, never sacrificed, would never understand. They sought neither glory nor special recognition, but they gained both by their actions. They are the true American heroes today and deserve more honor than we can humbly bestow on them."

The helicopter carrying the men went down seven miles east of the Bagram Air Base while on a training mission.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.

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