Benny's World

Saturday, December 31, 2005

A 2006 Version of Camelot

Courtesy of

Happy New Year's Eve! Have a great time...and we'll see you next year!

How Many Husbands Does It Take to Make a Handyman?

From the OAC Blog...

"The freezer door wouldn't close, so we got a repairman out, who diagnosed the problem right away. He asked me on the phone if my husband is handy. I told him no, but that my next husband would be. He asked how many husbands I expected to have. I told him as many as it took to get a handy one."

The story told by Elizabeth Edwards is comical as it like many good entertainers, one can make humor out of the mundane.

Read the rest here for the context.

One blogger responded to Elizabeth's post:

"Happy New Year to you, Elizabeth, to the Edwards family, and to all readers and contributers to "One America". JRE may not be "handy" when it comes to repairing stuff around the house, but I believe he is a man who could be "handy" at making a start on repairing what is wrong w/ our country today. "

I quite agree.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Going too Far (conversation in a bar)

William Rivers Pitt hits the bullseye again in his post on the DU (and probably on by now) about the slippery slope that Bush is skiing on to expand Executive powers.

Bush totally blew past them, said he didn’t need warrants from the FISA court, and just had the NSA start spying away on Americans.”

Ty’s response to this was too profane to be printed here.

“Why the hell’d he do that?” he finally asked.

“Good question,” I said. “There are two probable reasons, neither of which are very comfortable. The first reason is that he and Cheney want to expand the power of the Executive Branch. Cheney, specifically, has always felt that the Executive let go of too much power after Watergate and Vietnam, gave too much power to Congress and the press, and these guys have been trying to get it back. So they decided that, since
we are ‘at war,’ they were going to do whatever they damned well pleased.”

“Seems smart,” he said.

“Maybe,” I said, “but that’s a different debate. Ask yourself this, though. Imagine a Democrat wins the White House in 2008. These Bush guys will have left this Democrat with outrageously broad powers. They can spy on who they like, because Bush did it. They don’t have to get warrants, because Bush did it. They can lie to the press, because Bush did it. They can bulldoze Congress, because Bush did it. That make you comfortable?”

“Hell no,” he said.“

Right,” I said. “Too much power is too much power, no matter who is in power. The separation of powers is there for a reason.”

Click the link on the word "bullseye" to read the entire opinion. Whether one is Republican or Democrat or Independent, Pitt is correct. Bush has gone too far. and the "I-word" is getting around town.

Chasing Inspiration

The cyclist in the photo is someone whom I admire very much. Is it??..

1) Lance Armstrong
2) JRE
3) JRZ

In case you are recognizing that it is not choice number one or two; it is number three. However, JRZ gets out and bikes whenever possible. This pic was taken outside of the house yesterday when it got up to 45 deg...a balmy day for those of us who live in Central Illinois.

JRZ's bike mileage in 2005 (and it hasn't ended yet, folks) : 3050+...cha-ching

Look on his face...priceless.

My reaction...Inspiration 2.

OK, JRZ can't run everyday like JRE but he can bike! JRZ is thinking about the Cherohala challenge on June 17th, 2006.

Lance, I know you gave up bike races, but I wish you would return to the Smokies and bike a ways with those folks that you inspired.

Feel like we are chasing the wind in general.

And then there is Emma Claire and little Jack. :-) We recognize the dad in the blue sweater, I think, who also inspires not just them, but a lot of us.


What an inspiration.. a great pic of JRE and EAE.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

QE II Delivers Interesting Xmas Message

Note to my readers: I have re-worded the last paragraph.

From Yahoo/AP News:

LONDON - Queen Elizabeth II delivered a somber Christmas message Sunday, remembering those who lost loved ones in last year's Asian tsunami and the transit bombings that shook London's security.

"The day after my last Christmas message was broadcast, the world experienced one of the worst natural disasters ever recorded," she said, referring to the tsunami that crashed into coastlines from Asia to Africa a year ago, leaving some 216,000 people dead or missing.

The Dec. 26 tsunami ushered in a year of hurricanes that devastated New Orleans and pounded the Caribbean and an earthquake that killed tens of thousands in Pakistan and India.

"As if these disasters were not bad enough, I have sometimes thought that humanity seemed to have turned on itself — with wars, civil disturbances and acts of brutal terrorism," the queen said in a pre-recorded message in Buckingham Palace Chapel.

Read the rest here.

What you don't see in the lead paragraphs here that in addition that the whole Royal family got together, attended services, and appears they are trying to get along.

My hope for the next year is with an initiative my spouse and I are considering with my mother that perhaps we will be taking a leadership position within my family. But it does have to do with poverty and being better caregivers, when others who have so much are too enveloped into their own lives. For now, it's only dialog and no decisions, but it could be a very dramatic, perhaps positive change in my family.