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Bedtime Story

An Irish lullaby from Lisa Hannigan…

Ahhhh, and a little Basil-Hayden’s to hurry me off to Tir nan og, land of eternal youth…

This is an open thread.

41 Responses

  1. Beautiful! I must go to Ireland. Have been told that I have the
    “map of Ireland” on my face by Irish people in San Francisco
    , and some have
    asked me not where my grandparents came from (17 generations
    ago from County Cork so there has been lots of non-Irish), but
    where in Ireland I came from!

    • Yes, you must!

      I’ve been to Ireland once, and it was love at first sight. I’ve never before or since met so wonderful, welcoming, humorous, nice people. They really are speciel. And the island is beautiful.

  2. it’s a good thing I found this. Brook has decided to make a pop-up book for a science project and this videos gave us a lot of ideas as to how to construct it. She’s done pop-ups before but never on this scale.

  3. My people came from County Clare.

    • I think mine came from Roscommon. My aunt once went to Ireland to find the old homestead. I think we were peat bog Irish.
      Oh, and famine Irish, from both sides of the family.

  4. I took Brook to see Godspell at a local theatre tonight, She’s a little atheist. I am not.
    The play is a pretty good summary of all of Jesus’s greatest hits but it still left me a little cold. The actors were really good tho; the singing could have been better but, hey, this isn’t Broadway.
    Brook said her favorite parable was the Prodigal Son but she said she definitely identified with the elder son and not the father.
    Clearly, I haven’t been demonstrating enough unconditional love.
    Must work on this.

  5. I saw Godspell at a local theater last year. it was hella-good, seriously. I don’t think it woud convert a non-believer, but it was very feel-good and inspiring. the guy who played Jesus was really cute, which shouldn’t have helped but did.

  6. OK, those were seriously good pop-up books. Wow.

    Love those jebus (as Homer Simpson would say) musicals. Saw Godspell done by friends in a theatre. Wonderful musical. The guy who played Judas was the best though. But I just loved JC Superstar. Used to know all the parts and sung them all the time. Such an angel. Who know how bad I’d turn out. 🙂

    • My favorite from JC Superstar is “what’s the buzz”:

      Nice voices.

      Of course both of those musicals had the big lie pushed a long time ago about Mary Magdelen. Which at least the catholic church eventually apologized about. Ah, the age old power struggle to push down women. We couldn’t have a woman as an equal apostle after all.

  7. Good morning. No topic to be off – so I’d like to share this with you.

    I walk daily on the banks of the Citadel in Copenhagen, and several times lately I have seen and not least heard, swans, in pairs or flocks, flying overhead. The sight is beautiful … but the sound they make is mesmerizing! As if the wings are singing. Sooo special.

    By the brink of the water surrounding the Citadel, a pair of swans are busy nesting near the statue of The Little Mermaid – separated and protected only by a low bank from the throngs of turists, who come to see the statue. And who more often than not are disappointed by the size, as she is “only” life-sized.

    The heron, whose mate was killed by an unleashed dog in the fall, and have huddled over looking sad and lonely ever since, have found new love, and the two of them are gliding above the water surrounding the Citadel, speeding up and cutting the corners as “on one wing”.

    When the big, fat geese aren’t indolently grazing – or swimming, chasing and being chased, they scold incessantly, as they fly. Their landing, be it on turf or water, is like watching a cartoon: Feet first, toes upward and then screeeccchhh to a stop.

    And the coot, also a very noisy bird, looks more sophisticated on the ground than all the other waddling web-footed birds, as its web doesn’t go between the toes, only delicately fringes every single toe.

    Soon the banks will be covered in a profusion of white ‘bankhyacinths’ in full bloom, a beautiful but somehow timid flower that has been known to grow here for centuries … but don’t even get me started on the flora, LOL.

    It’s a bliss to, though living in the middle of a city, still be able to feel so connected to nature.

    • Your comment doesn’t seem at all off-topic in any case to me, especially since I couldn’t help but imagine what a gorgeous pop-up book could be made of it.

      I too consider myself fortunate, living in New York City but able to go anytime to Central Park, where yesterday the trees (cherry, magnolia, apple, and other species I have yet to learn the names of) have never been more blossomy.

      I hope some day to visit Copenhagen. As a girl I so loved Hans Christian Andersen’s sad, sweet fairy tales.

  8. After following the previous thread, I am going to make a prediction that at some point the PUMAsphere is going to fracture along D-R lines- between those who are now leaning R because they are more conservative or feeling betrayed by their prior party and those leaning D because of past history and core beliefs.
    (There are obviously a million other ways to describe it).

    Before that happens, I would hope PUMA could produce an “Independent” stance or position as an Independent Party with a base of principles,etc.
    Something that functions in the real world between the D and R.
    Blogging isn’t enough.

    • Um, I have no intention of becoming Republican. Who do you see in the PUMA movement becoming Republican? What I see is some more conservative types actually coming to their senses and realizing that Republicans have betrayed them. They may not want to take up the liberal label but they are starting to trend that way, as they always have. They were just temporarily distracted by Republican talking points.

    • It’s happeninjg like spring follows winter. Though I doubt that many will go R, the Libertarians will probably gain.

      The incessant rank BS about the people who did the tea parties is driving a nice wedge into place. There seems to be an inability on the part of large parts of PUMA to believe that people would really hit the streets to protest Trillions of dollars going to insolvent banks.

      I have seen less of that condescension here than on some other PUMA blogs, but if you don’t think you’re infected, take another look.

      • You wanna know what will get attention? When the forces of the left come together to have their own unParty parties, then and only then will anyone care. It might not be reported in the press so it will have to be a widely diffuse grassroots movement. But that’s what it’s going to take. No one on Capitol Hill is remotely worried about anyone voting Republican to rebalance the power between rich and poor. But if we take on the Democrats directly and primary their asses, that should concentrate their attentions most accutely.

    • What about a party that is really for the people? Truly for people over special interests and corporate interests (except where corporate and worker interest are in alignment).

      What we don’t want is to continue having “the best government money can buy.”
      (Gore Vidal’s quote about our government.)

  9. Not if the PUMAsphere remembers the principle of co-belligerence. We can work together against a common enemy, or toward a common goal, without complete agreement on each and every item. It’s a matter of not becoming offended (or offensive) about differences not related to the matter at hand.

    • Well said. I think it will bear repeating!

      • THanks, purplefinn. I would just hate to see us devolve to the status of other liberal blogs, where you sign on to all aspects of the majority opinion, or nothing that you have to say about anything whatsoever has merit .

        • I think the ones who left us have the opinion that there are sacred points of view that shouldn’t be challenged. We do not subscribe to absolutism. IMHO, the ones who left us have done incredible damage to the movement.

          • If there is one issue that can divide people it is that issue. I don’t think they have left the PUMA movement. They would rather not be associated with the confluence. Not all Pumas agree on everything so while I think the people at the Confluence agree with them on most things when it comes to that issue, we all just have to agree to disagree.

          • Taxes are good. The federal government should do more. I’ve read that a lot here. Don’t agree with a word of it, but it seems pretty sacred here to me.

    • Taxes are good if you used well. Better transportation systems, schools, cultural investimates, better public services (i.e firefighters and police with better equipments and resources and can do their jobs better) etc. Without corruption or wasteful spending that money can be used to achieve great things that can benefit the public.

      • Most of what you listed are state and locally funded, as they should be for schools, firefighters, and police. The last thing we should want is more federal involvment in local institutions. I am surprised that you didn’t mention regulation of business and interstate commerce, but then again we don’t have that now and more taxes won’t help it.

        The last large federal transportation investment was the interstate highway system, thanks to Eisenhower, Johnson, and Mr Sam Rayburn. Since then federal dollars have largely been spent on pork barrel projects.

        Change is more easily made at the local and state level. For that reason alone, a more Libertarian fed could be a good thing. They would have to give up on no regulation for business if they ever want to attain any power though.

  10. Feminism in the Web era: It ain’t pretty

    Recent events have made me wonder despairingly whether decades of modern feminism have made any significant dent at all in the quality of relationships between young women and men.

    The Web chatter by teenage girls who have been casually forgiving of rapper Chris Brown’s alleged battering of his girlfriend, singer Rihanna, has stymied me. If you judge by some of the posts, many girls seem to think she must have done something to provoke it, or that she is equally to blame. A New York Times story last week, headlined “Teenage girls stand by their man,” quoted one Grade 9er: “She probably made him mad for him to react like that. You know, like, bring it on?”

    Equally frustrating were the soulless text messages from the shocking M.T. murder trial in Toronto, in which a 17-year-old girl who can only be identified as M.T. was convicted of first-degree murder last week after spurring her boyfriend to stab another girl to death, partly in exchange for sexual favours.

    These vile text messages, flatly discussing “bj’s” and “bang bangs” and fuelled by the obsessive irrational hatred of one girl toward another, depicted an emotional landscape devoid of respect, conscience or heart. They also revealed a very retro scenario – a monster girl who thinks her power lies in bitchily, and then murderously, vanquishing another girl.

    In these cases, girls see other girls as the enemy in the endless hand-to-hand combat to capture guys. Chris Brown is better off outta there, say those girls. Don’t you know?

    As for the convicted M.T., she joins a small cadre of supposedly empowered girl killers, so I can’t exactly claim she is a feminist victim.

    But her ferocious wish to have her perceived rival, 14-year-old Stefanie Rengel, “dead in coffin” stems from an ages-old pre-feminist scenario.

    In it, girls believe they don’t have a lot of real power, that it lies only in attracting or keeping a guy, and they’ll go to desperate ends to do so.

    Why on earth is this still in play? Many boy-girl relationships today have become a retro minefield because of the confluence of several things.

    First, there has been the sexualization of young women very early in their teens, so that being “hot” and attracting boys becomes an early measurement of their worth, and remains that way well into adulthood.

    Second, there’s been a devaluing of feminism and its true principles in the media and popular culture. Feminism has been both trivialized – softened into what I call “you go girl-ism” – and demonized by exaggerating scary things such as man hatred.

    Yet feminism at its best offered women – and men for that matter – the idea that anyone should be able to achieve what she wants regardless of gender, and that loving and successful domestic relationships could consist of two equal partners. It offered teenage girls – and boys – an alternate universe. They could reach out for this universe and try it on for size. They could discover its flaws but admire its aims.

    What makes me tear my hair out is that teenage girls today have been given every single tool they need to gain their own equality: the words, the books, the laws; the examples everywhere of women, sometimes their own mothers, achieving at work and living in respectful and equal domestic relationships.


    Reclusive leftist also has a thread about this.
    It’s like feminism never happened

    • Janis – comemnts on that thread are closed so I can’t reply there.

      I think this article is in tune with the article written by Natalie Sikavi Feminism is equality, not sameness. The fact is that the young girls Judith Timson refers to don’t consider themselves feminists and if they did, they wouldn’t really know the real essence of Feminism.

      The word Feminism has been misused. I think Natalie Sikavi has better description for it:

      It’s about equality, not sameness. It’s about being able to run for president and being treated with legitimacy. It’s about a healthy perception of sexuality. It’s about expecting that you and your male co-worker be paid the same wage. It’s about compromise and about a state of mind.


      Most of the women you refered to also abandoned Hillary. Yes, their treatment of Palin was bad but remember these same women either joined in or did nothing whe someone from their own party was attacked. So I don’t see it as a we hate all republican women thingy. The republican women leaders did the same when a woman of another party was attacked. Which is why I agree with Natalie Sikavi when she says its about It’s about equality, not sameness.. It is a woman problem. It is the women who don’t defend/support other women and this is something that doesn’t happen only on the democratic party side. Women from both parties share the blame.
      I think what happened to both women in the primary and general was also about the she will ashame us and she deserves what is happening to her beliefs.
      I think it also had something to do with some women always seeing the other woman as an enemy or projecting on to others their problems and fears. There really are women that believe women shouldn’t be president because their lives are supposed to be about them supporting their husbands and taking care of the home. Hillary was accused by a prominent presidential candidate’s wife of not being happy because she dared to do something different.

      • Women as full and equal participants with men in our world has not been achieved. We have work to do. We may never achieve the ideal. I will never stop striving or caring. When has feminism been the dominant force on our world? Matriarchal societies are rare.

        Some changes have been achieved. We’ve a long way to go. The price of any liberation is eternal vigilance. I am reminded of the slogan: I’ll be post-feminist in the post-patriarchy.

  11. Here is a beautiful little animation :

  12. so so sooooo I am in moderation. I also submitted the same post twice so please delete the first one.

  13. Grads of all-girls schools show stronger academic orientations than coed grads
    UCLA report also shows higher SATs, confidence in math, computer skills

    Female graduates of single-sex high schools demonstrate stronger academic orientations than their coeducational counterparts across a number of different categories, including higher levels of academic engagement, SAT scores, and confidence in mathematical ability and computer skills, according to a UCLA report.

    The report’s findings, drawn from multiple categories, including self-confidence, political and social activism, life goals, and career orientation, reveal that female graduates of single-sex schools demonstrate greater academic engagement: Nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of single-sex independent school alumnae report spending 11 or more hours per week studying or doing homework in high school, compared with less than half (42 percent) of female graduates of coeducational independent schools.

    “Women Graduates of Single-Sex and Coeducational High Schools: Differences in their Characteristics and the Transition to College” draws data from the annual Freshman Survey, administered by the Cooperative Institutional Research Program at the Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA. The report, which separately considers female students from independent and Catholic high schools nationwide, is based on a comparison of the responses of 6,552 female graduates of 225 private single-sex high schools with those of 14,684 women who graduated from 1,169 private coeducational high schools.
    Female graduates of single-sex high schools also show higher levels of political engagement, greater interest in engineering careers, measurably more self-confidence in public speaking and a stronger predisposition towards cocurricular engagement.

    “The culture, climate and community of girls’ schools as a transforming force speaks loud and clear in the results of this study and confirms that at girls’ schools it’s ‘cool to be smart’ — there’s a culture of achievement in which a girl’s academic progress is of central importance, and the discovery and development of her individual potential is paramount,” said Meg Milne Moulton, executive director of the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools, which commissioned the study.

    Among the report’s key findings:

    Women who attended single-sex schools tended to outperform their coeducational counterparts: Mean SAT composite scores (verbal plus math) were 43 points higher for female single-sex graduates in the independent school sector and 28 points higher for single-sex alumnae in the Catholic school sector.

    Graduates of single-sex schools also enter college with greater confidence in their mathematical and computer abilities. The gap in math confidence is most pronounced in the independent school sector, where 48 percent of female graduates of single-sex independent schools rate their math ability “above average” or in the “highest 10 percent,” compared with 37 percent of independent coeducational female graduates.


  14. What do you think about the role of gangster rap music in all of this? And what does all of that say about male/female roles in the AA community?

    I was so lucky to grow up in a very small rural Indiana town. There were 7 people in my elementary class grades 1 to 8. Even with 2 grades to a classroom the guys had to have girls on the team or there were not enough people for a team. Talent ruled.

    The answer to the teen age girls demonizing/gossiping, taking down another female while putting the male on a pedestal is about those raging hormones of the pre-teen and teen years. It is probably also about relationships with mom and other women growing up. The teen years are about rebelling and mom and dad models can get pretty battered. I have seen some female cliques in middle and high school that were on the edge of vicious. It takes some strong adult intervention sometimes to turn that around. I suspect that modern technology makes that teen world today far more isolated from healthy, mature adult influences. The isolation of our youth from adult role models in everyday life is a real issue. When teens get jobs, they often have an older teen as their trainer or manager. They are able to live most of their waking time in a world with little adult influence.

    • The answer to the teen age girls demonizing/gossiping, taking down another female while putting the male on a pedestal is about those raging hormones

      Wasn’t this what happened in the primary and general where most of these women were not teenagers?

      Gangster rap degrades women. Women are seen as things not human beings. It helps in promoting the beliefs that it is acceptable in treating women that way.
      I thought Rihanna left Chris Brown

      • Downticket,

        Some women were Hillary’s worst enemies. They buy into second-class citizenship and think that any male is preferable to a woman.

        It was amazing to me how fast Gloria Steinem swung around to Bama. To me, she is a fraud of the first order.

  15. First saw this on Alegre’s corner and wanted to post it here. What a remarkable woman. It is hard but she is putting up one hell of a fight.

    Cambodia’s New War
    Sochua Mu, an opposition leader and founder of the women’s movement in Cambodia, recently returned to the U.S., lobbying Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to take a firmer line on democracy and human rights in her long-suffering country. “I needed to see the people in the new administration to urge them to re-assess U.S. foreign policy,” says Sochua in an interview with The Daily Beast. “Cambodia is a democracy on paper but in reality a dictatorship. Our party activists are murdered because they fight for justice-life is still cheap in Cambodia. Human trafficking, drug trafficking, land grabbing, and forced evictions are all carried out under the nose of the government.” …

    In 1998, Sochua ran for election and won a seat in parliament, taking over the women’s affairs ministry, which had previously been run by men. In a country that considers women inferior, Sochua mobilized 25,000 female candidates to run for commune elections in 2002. It was a first for Cambodia, and 900 of them were elected.

    She negotiated an agreement with Thailand that allowed Cambodian women trafficked as sex workers to return to their home country instead of being jailed. She pioneered the use of TV commercials to spread the word about trafficking to vulnerable populations. Her work in Cambodia also supports campaigns to end domestic violence and the spread of HIV/AIDS, as well as women’s workplace conditions. In 2005, she was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize for her work against sex trafficking of women.


  16. I am in moderation again

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