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As the lovely Kula has said her Morning Reactions will be "sporadic" over the next two weeks - she thinks packing a household and moving from Korea to the U.S. is more important than her duties here at DKos ... what nerve! - I'm filling in to give the Kula Krew a place to gather and share Koffee, Kuddles, and Konversation.

I'd been planning a Melancholy Monday series, because Monday is usually the first day of the workweek and we all love to dread and moan about the week to come.  But there's something special happening this week, well, two things.  First: today is the observance of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, so it's a holiday.  And second, there's some big deal in Washington tomorrow.  Something about the elections, I think.

Oh who am I kidding?  Didn't you cry yesterday watching that concert?

More below the fold....

I'm neither as old as the Old Redneck nor probably as sweet as Sweet Thing, but Herself and I also bawled like babies while watching the We Are One concert kicking off the Inaugural festivities.  I know some are upset that Bishop Gene Robinson's invocation was not included, and as a lesbian I understand their upset.  I too was a bit disappointed not to see that.

But then I made a choice to let myself be swept away.  And that's not a choice I afford myself very often.  Unlike President-Elect Obama, whom I think was likely calm on his wedding day, I'm not a naturally calm person.  I have to work hard to keep a level emotional state, because I'm bipolar.  Whenever I start to feel any strong emotion, I tell myself: "Things are rarely as bad, or as good, as they seem."  That sentence is how I was able to keep cool when I practiced law.  I've found that tamping down that first emotional response - positive or negative - makes me a better partner, a better mom, a better friend, and a better person.  Because the alternative, for me, often wasn't pretty.

The night of November 4th was an exception.  At 11pm when Keith Olbermann "made it official," I leapt in the air - as high as the battered ol' gams would take me anyway - and let out a very loud "YESSSSS!"  And then I let myself have a big cry.  All the hours, all the hopes, all the fighting to keep my gritty optimism when it seemed the other party might seize the narrative and turn things around ... were not wasted.  Yes, we could.

And when the U.S. Army Band Herald Trumpets kicked off yesterday's event with Aaron Copeland's "Fanfare for a Common Man," one of my favorite works by one of my favorite composers, I knew I had to let yesterday's concert be one of those exceptions too.  Because it wasn't simply a concert for our tomorrow-to-be President.  It was a celebration of ourselves.

Copeland's magic returned when Tom Hanks performed the "Tribute to Abraham Lincoln," and how fitting that the producers chose two works by perhaps America's finest classical composer.  But the producers chose exceptionally well throughout.  From James Taylor to Stevie Wonder, from Garth Brooks singing "American Pie" to Beyonce concluding with "America the Beautiful," from Tiger Woods' stirring tribute to his father and all of our military and their families to Jamie Foxx's droll spoof of Obama himself, the concert captured the best essence of who we long to be as a nation, as a people.

I know some think this inaugural is over the top.  Too expensive at a time when too many Americans are hurting and money is too tight.  I understand the reasoning, but I respectfully disagree.  Sometimes the most precious assets we have are hope, courage, and bonding with one another.  This is one of those times.  And if this week's inaugural festivities revive our hope, renew our courage, and reknit our bond as a nation - a people - it will have been money well spent.

We are not "the greatest country in the world."  But we have been before and can be again a great nation, a great people.  We are defined more by our differences than by our likenesses, more by our struggles than by our victories.  This week will highlight and celebrate those differences and those struggles, from today's commemoration of one of our slain heroes, to tomorrow's inauguration of that slain hero's dream.

So let yourself get misty-eyed today, and this week.  Remember when you dreamt this nation - We the People - could meet your highest hopes rather than your worst fears.  Give yourself permission to dream again.

We need those dreams now, more than ever.

Happy Monday!

Originally posted to NCrissieB on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 02:35 AM PST.

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    •  Big hugs, Crissie, for posting (10+ / 0-)

      this warm wonderful diary. I felt the same. I actually watched the whole thing twice. I watched it live and had also DVR'd it for my roommate. When he came home, I ended up watching it again, just as mesmerized and teary-eyed as I was the first time. It was precious, also, to watch his (Steve's) face. He was awestruck through the whole thing. Mouth half-open and smiling with an occasional tear running down his face which he didn't think I noticed. For me, it's my New Patriotism. It's an upbeat hopeful honest true patriotism that I've never felt before. Hugs again, and, oh, Jax Dem just joined us!

      •  morning you gals... (8+ / 0-)

        What a wonderful day...so glad to have the pleasure of sharing it, all that led up to it and all that will follow with such goddesses.  On to tomorrow...

        As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. -John F. Kennedy

        by JaxDem on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 02:53:10 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Mornin kkt! And I love "New Patriotism!" (8+ / 0-)

        ::snugglycuddlywarm'n'puddlyhuggggggggggs:: to you!

        I love that phrase "New Patriotism."  We have to get that into the popular lexicon, so please use it at every opportunity, and if it's okay with you, I'll use it too!  We Americans are a great people.  We're far from perfect, and we're not "the greatest in the world," but we are a great people nonetheless.  And we need to bond in that again.  To stop fearing the worst in ourselves and the world, and remember when we didn't think it was silly to get teary-eyed at events like we're witnessing this week.

        We've been battered by fear for too long.  It's been poured over us, and force-fed into us, to the point that I think many of us wanted to projectile vomit it like a thrown shoe at Bush and his cronies.  (How's that for a visual!?!?)

        We face a lot of challenges, and I don't have to tell you that because you face as many as anyone right now.  But if we can bond together as a people and realize that "This Land is Your Land, This Land is My Land" ... we can and will take back our dream.

        Yes, We Can!

        •  Well, I'm sure I'm not the first one to coin (6+ / 0-)

          the term "New Patriotism", but it just feels right to me and I agree we should put the term into wide use. To me, it's kinda hip, kinda corny, very real, universal, and joyous. New Patriotism has no fear attached to it. I grew up associating patriotism with war, and since my first memory I've always had both fear and aversion to war; thus not a warm feeling toward patriotism. Now, it's a warm spiritual proudness, a oneness as a diverse country.

      •  I'm getting ready to watch it again (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NCrissieB, addisnana

        Thanks to Tivo.  And too bad that two of the kids are still asleep.  It's ten a.m., and I didn't make them stay up until nearly dawn.  And I need that feeling again.

        My son recorded it because, of course, he had to play WOW first.  And my daughter was off with her church youth group all evening.

        But I can guarantee you, both of them are going to watch that concert, regardless of other plans, because not only was it a moment in history, it was a lesson in history that all of our youngsters should have.

        "It's what you think you know that just ain't so that will get you into trouble." --Will Rogers

        by winterbanyan on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 07:01:04 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Thank you so much for this! (6+ / 0-)

      My connection's too slow from here in Africa to get the hbo site to load.  I've watched a few youtube clips, of Beyonce, and of course Pete Seeger, but it's fantastic to get to hear the emotion from people who actually experienced it firsthand.  It's not as good as seeing it myself, but it sure does help!  

      Funny to get weepy just reading, but there you have it!

      (Sadly, in Kathmandu no longer.)

      by American in Kathmandu on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 03:51:28 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Big hug for you this morning. (9+ / 0-)

      I've been bawling like a baby at the drop of a hat.

      The producers put together a classic - and though there is a lot of kvetching about HBO doing it - I appreciated the fact that I didn't have to listen to the inane remarks of pun-idjits which would have happened if the networks got their hands on it.

      "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition" Bernice Johnson Reagon

      by Denise Oliver Velez on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 04:21:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Deeeeeeeeeeee!!! (6+ / 0-)

        I've missed you, hon!! ::hugggggggggggggggggs::

        I've seen a couple of your diaries, including your wonderful one about the heroism on the Hudson last week.  That was an example of human beings finding the best that lies within us, from the pilots whose training and professionalism enabled that miraculous landing to all of the rescuers who made sure not a single person lost his/her life.  I was going to add a comment, but it would have been redundant.

        It's lovely to see you, as always.  And like you, I find myself crying tears of joy at the littlest happy things these past few days.  It's as if a blanket of fear, doubt, and cynicism are being replaced, if only for a few days, by a crystal clear night filled with stardrops of hope and belief that maybe, just maybe, We the People can once again begin to work toward that More Perfect Union.

        And to see so many brilliant black artists sharing their joy yesterday - kicked off with the stirring tribute to an artist who was not permitted to sing at the White House ... well ... wow.  So far to go yet, yes, but for the first time in my life I think it's possible we could realize Dr. King's dream....

  •  You never disappoint Crissie (11+ / 0-)

    nor do you cease to amaze; great diary.

    And if this week's inaugural festivities revive our hope, renew our courage, and reknit our bond as a nation - a people - it will have been money well spent.

    Truer words were never typed...

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. -John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 02:49:04 AM PST

  •  I, for one, don't believe this inauguration is (13+ / 0-)

    over the top...After 8 years of crap being thrown at us, We deserve a celebration of things to come.  Beyonce's rendition of America the Beautiful was just amazing: I would love that to be our national anthem, rather than our present one based on war.  And, Pete Seeger's lead of This Land is your Land...well, no word to describe my feelings.  
    I finally found a sig line yesterday that says it all...our hopes and dreams are there.  
    Just one more day!

    All shall be well again, I'm telling you. Let the winter come and go. All shall be well again, I know. (S Carter)

    by MinervainNH on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 02:58:48 AM PST

    •  'Morning Minerva! I love your new (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem, NCrissieB, addisnana

      sig line. It gave me goosebumps when I read it. I also loved Pete Seeger. My other favorite was Tom Hanks with the Lincoln rendition. Awesome. No, nothing is too over the top given the long wait. I'm just breathing deeply and trying to absorb all the wonderful moments....

    •  Mornin' Minerva! (5+ / 0-)

      ::extra-warm huggggggs:: coz I know it didn't warm up in New Hampshire like it has here in Florida!  Or maybe it's just that I like hugging.... ::sly wink::

      Herself, who is older than me, spoke of how "This Land Is Your Land" was one of the protest songs she and her generation sang, arms linked, as they marched in protest against the Vietnam War.  So she linked her arms with mine, and we sang along joyfully.  Both Pootie the Precious and Woofie the Younger were sure we'd gone over the edge....

      (Aside: You know you look strange when a kitten who sleeps curled up like a corkscrew, or thinks it's fun to hop into a box full of used wrapping paper and bat it til she's buried, gives you that "Okay, YOU'RE being weird" look!)

      •  It's a balmy 16 degrees. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem, NCrissieB, AJ in Camden, kktlaw

        A bit of snow dropped overnight, and yesterday.  It's beautiful here.  I love my 4 seasons: as long as it stays above 0.
        But, I'll take your warm hugs any day.

        All shall be well again, I'm telling you. Let the winter come and go. All shall be well again, I know. (S Carter)

        by MinervainNH on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 03:15:42 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks for mentioning this, Crissie (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ms badger, NCrissieB, addisnana

        The "human wall", some of us called it.  Arms linked tight with one another at the elbow, our hands clasped equally tight in front of us, we stood and sang that song on many occasions, not just when protesting the war.  Did it for Civil Rights, too.

        I cried when they sang that because all of a sudden I was young again, full of the belief I could help change the world, and absolutely determined that no cop in riot gear was going to force me to give up my Constitution-guaranteed right to demand a better country.  Because "This Land is OUR Land."

        Gawd, what a trip down memory lane, what a trip period.  I once again felt as if I could help move mountains, if only we just link our arms and stand fast.

        The entire concert moved me in ways I haven't felt moved in forever.  If this is the New Patriotism, I want to sing it from the rooftops.

        I saw the America we can be.  All that we have striven for and will strive for.  We are One!

        And Yes we can!

        "It's what you think you know that just ain't so that will get you into trouble." --Will Rogers

        by winterbanyan on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 05:47:02 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I was just too young to be part of that.... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          winterbanyan, AJ in Camden, addisnana

          Like our new president, I was just a few years too young to be a part of that.  We were called the generation of apathy (to which we drolly replied "So?"), because we weren't out in the streets protesting.  It wasn't apathy.  It was trying to get a degree and a job and put ourselves in a situation where we could, maybe, someday, do some good.

          On the one hand, I've always been a bit wistful, wishing I too could have participated in the youth movement of the late 60s and early 70s.  On the other hand, I'm proud that perhaps the spokesman for a New Hope comes from my generation who, though we may not realize it, owe many of our most cherished liberties to yours.

          The wheel go 'round in circles.... :)

          •  You know, Crissie... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ms badger, NCrissieB, AJ in Camden

            I sometimes think the only right we preserved with our protests was the right to protest.  We used to get so mad when they'd try to disrupt a peaceful protest because there it was right in the Constitution:  The right to peaceably assemble and petition for redress of grievances.

            We were hyper-aware of the Constitution, and hyper aware that the right to protest was essential to our survival as a Nation of the People, by the People and For the People.

            But I'm still sitting here awed, because the ultimate peaceful protest has occurred in my lifetime: the Election of Barack Obama.

            So don't regret that you missed the sixties.  You are here for the best of all.

            "It's what you think you know that just ain't so that will get you into trouble." --Will Rogers

            by winterbanyan on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 06:12:38 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Y'all did more than that.... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              AJ in Camden

              A lot of us don't remember how "young" many of the civil rights we take for granted really are.  From Gideon v. Wainright to Miranda v. Arizona to the Pentagon Papers cases to little things like being able to wear a flag patch on your clothing, or curse without being arrested - not to mention the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts, the women's movement, the birth of the LGBT movement, etc. - your generation provided the social push for a radically different kind of America than had existed before.  It's an America your generation should justly feel proud to have helped birth, and one my generation should rightly be grateful to have inherited.

              •  Aww thanks.... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                NCrissieB

                And don't forget the draft. ;)

                We fought that one hard, as it was unjust to the poor and minorities.  These days, though, I hear the Pentagon takes credit for that one.  They say they decided the draft was bad because it brought in too many drug users.

                Sure.  That's why they needed the Draft Lottery to wean themselves off having access to an endless supply of new bodies.

                "It's what you think you know that just ain't so that will get you into trouble." --Will Rogers

                by winterbanyan on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 06:32:09 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

    •  I'm not sure if this is good or not, but our (12+ / 0-)

      six-year-old daughter, when watching news on the election festivities, made the comment, "It's like the Munchkin's parade after the house lands on the witch."  Her dad and I didn't know what to say and just dodged the comment completely.

      For my part, I think the festivities are probably a bit much, but darn it all, we need the opportunity to come together as a country. If it helps heal the damage of this era of fear-mongering excessive partisanship, it's totally worth the bill. And judging from the opinion polls showing Obama's sky-high favorable ratings, the country seems to approve.  

      •  Tell your 6-year-old I agree! ::giggling:: (6+ / 0-)

        As for whether the festivities are too much, the proof of that pudding will be in the tasting, and the tasting will be whether it helps to bring us back together as a people.  If it does, it was very much worth it.

      •  LOL munchkin parade! Hilarious! (12+ / 0-)

        You know I said this yesterday in the liveblog: I'm finding this to all be very cathartic. It's giving the nation a reason to release pain and cry tears of joy for  once in a very long time. People losing homes, jobs... These are serious things. All the more reason we need the salve of strong positivity - strong enough to induce tears.

        I mentioned in the thread that the last time I felt anything even remotely as cathartic was when Hillary declared Obama the nominee by proclaimation. It was a moment for me but was probably even moreso to hillary fans and to lifelong dems who worried about the party.

        In times of great stress, an equal measure of grandiosity is often just what is needed.

      •  too funny! I'll be thinking of the munchkin (5+ / 0-)

        parade as I watch all the festivities.  What a great insight.

        I keep hearing all the commentators talking about how crowded it's going to be and how far away people will be from Obama -- like they think it's so absurd that everyone wants to go.  I think the crowd is the point - standing shoulder to shoulder with all the people who believe just as you do.  People who look forward to a brighter day, a new beginning...  I've gone to many college football games, Chicago Bulls games (when Michael Jordan was playing) and the excitement in the crowd made everything so much better than all the closeups I'd get to see on TV.  And this inauguration is a 1000 times better than any game I could see.  I'd give anything to be there, one among a million celebrating a new day in America

        "We have always known that heedless self-interest was bad morals; we know now that it is bad economics" FDR

        by theKgirls on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 04:42:09 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  good morning all! (13+ / 0-)

    feels good to be part of the "eighty-percenters" these days, doesn't it? especially after having had to listen to the "twenty-percenters" for so long:

    as the nation prepares for a transfer of power and the inauguration of its 44th president, mr. obama’s stature with the american public stands in sharp contrast to that of president bush.

    mr. bush is leaving office with just 22 percent of americans offering a favorable view of how he handled the eight years of his presidency, a record low, and firmly identified with the economic crisis mr. obama is inheriting. more than 80 percent of respondents said the nation was in worse shape today than it was five years ago.

    by contrast, 79 percent were optimistic about the next four years under mr. obama, a level of good will for a new chief executive that exceeds that measured for any of the past five incoming presidents. and it cuts across party lines: 58 percent of the respondents who said they voted for mr. obama’s opponent in the general election, senator john mccain of arizona, said they were optimistic about the country in an obama administration.

    •  Morning aarrgghh... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aarrgghh, NCrissieB, AJ in Camden, kktlaw

      I'll pimp for you today...aarrgghh's diary is up this am.   We have a twofer today...

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. -John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 03:06:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hello Aarrgghh (love your name!), (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aarrgghh, NCrissieB

      I was flipping channels today and pitied the people (few that they must have been) watching Fox News. As the best concert of the century so far was going on HBO, some wingnuts were arguing about some inconsequential crap. Don't know what cuz I flipped it quickly. Happy Monday!

    •  Mmoorrnniinngg aarrgghh!! (6+ / 0-)

      I think I spelled that right. ::giggles::

      And yes, it's nice to be among the 80%!  In my Sunday Ask Ms. Crissie yesterday I had a letter from "Vern in KY," which was based on a Washington Post story from Saturday.  It seems a lot of people who voted for McCain are sincerely hoping they have good cause to vote for Obama in 2012.  One said he really hoped he'd be "fist-bumpin' with the black folk" in the next election, and he would if Obama was able to get some jobs and other positive progress for our battered nation.  I can't help but respect people who actually hope events will prove them wrong.

    •  Must be the pity percent, that 22. n/t (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aarrgghh, JaxDem, NCrissieB, AJ in Camden

      How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

      by hannah on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 03:17:02 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  and the stupidity percent? n/t (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NCrissieB, theKgirls
      •  Or the cognitive dissonance percent ... (5+ / 0-)

        Some of that 22% have an economic interest in The Way Things Were.  But a whole lot more are probably bound by cognitive dissonance.  They worked so hard to make and preserve The Way Things Were - whether it worked for them or not - and when we do that it's very hard to flip our opinions.  It has to to with cognitive dissonance, and our inherent need to feel we've made good decisions.  Once we've acted, we want very much to feel we've acted correctly, and then confirmation bias and other cognitive defense mechanisms kick in to reinforce that belief.

        In short, while I disagree with them, I also understand why they're clinging to 22% status.  It's sad, but it's also very, very human.

    •  I hear-tell of these 22%... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aarrgghh, JaxDem, NCrissieB, AJ in Camden

      I've met a couple.  Neither has the income to be in this 22%, though.  It's a religious-thing for them.  They think Obama's gonna ruin the country.  Like those that are anti-choice/pro-life, they can't be swayed. sighhhhhh...

      All shall be well again, I'm telling you. Let the winter come and go. All shall be well again, I know. (S Carter)

      by MinervainNH on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 03:39:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Don't give up on them. :) (6+ / 0-)

        Admittedly, only dictators in totalitarian countries ever get 100% of the vote, so we must be realistic.  But please don't give up on any of them.  I think a lot of people are willing to change their minds, once they're sure it's "safe" to do so.  The more we insult them, the less they think it's "safe" to change their minds.

      •  I think Obama is going to present an even (6+ / 0-)

        more spiritual based administration that ever before.  If you define christianity as helping those less fortunate, caring for others, loving your fellow man, and all those things that religion used to stand for, before the Christian Right began defining it.  As Gandhi said "I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."  Maybe when those particular "religious" people see a caring, compassionate administration, they will rethink their opposition.

        Good morning everyone -- I love having the house quiet and totally too myself while the kids are still asleep and kicking back to enjoy Morning Reaction.  Thanks for filling in, Crissie.  My morning just isn't the same with reading all the comments from Kula's Krew!

        "We have always known that heedless self-interest was bad morals; we know now that it is bad economics" FDR

        by theKgirls on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 04:08:46 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Mornin' hon! (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JaxDem, theKgirls

          I agree with you.  I think it was C.S. Lewis, or perhaps Gandhi, who said: "The worst thing about Christianity is Christians."  It's too often true.  And if the poignant hymn God's Hands is true, and I think it is, then yes this could well be a time of true spiritual renewal, as we become God's loving hands for those in need, instead of piously chanting Onward, Christian Soldiers while we act anything but Christ-like.

          ::huggggggggggggs:: to you, and I hope you're planning all sorts of delightful 'vengeance' on Mr. Kgirls when he gets back from all those warm places he's been while you and the kids have shivered in this way-too-cold winter. ::winks::

          •  not revenge, but changing a few plans... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            NCrissieB, kktlaw

            Kgirl1 is a great golfer -- she's played in the kids World Cup in Pinehurst and the European Championship is Scotland and she was supposed to be playing in a tournament in Jekyll Island in a few weeks.  But with the broken nose and (assuming the insurance co. gets their sh1t together) recouping from surgery, I'm thinking she won't really be in any condition to play. So there goes the whole week in sunny, much warmer S.C. and that means no golf for Mr Kgirls.  But he's still going to have to take a couple of days vacation to do something I want to do -- I just can't figure out what that is yet!  After spending so much time hauling the kids around to doctor's appointments, I no longer know what I'm interested in...

            "We have always known that heedless self-interest was bad morals; we know now that it is bad economics" FDR

            by theKgirls on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 04:27:45 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I've no idea what your travel budget is.... (0+ / 0-)

              But if you can afford it, perhaps try St. Augustine here in Florida?  There's a lovely B&B that Herself and I stayed at on our honeymoon, in Old Town, and if you enjoy history it's really a lovely retreat.  It has enough to feel "busy" but also plenty of chances to feel "peaceful" also, kind of the ideal mix for a vacation (IMO).  If you're interested, let me know and I'll get you the details.

              •  sounds divine, but I have to drive there... (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                winterbanyan, NCrissieB

                MrKgirls is flying in from a two week trip to South America (yeah, about 10 days after returning from a three week trip to Asia) and the plan was to pick him up in D.C. which means I do the driving from Boston to D.C. and a lot of it afterwards since he's on the red-eye back.  All I want right now is someone cooking my meals and a week away from grocery stores and doctor's offices.  Maybe we'll stay in D.C. and breathe in the excitement -- even if it's a few weeks later, I don't think it can ever go stale!

                "We have always known that heedless self-interest was bad morals; we know now that it is bad economics" FDR

                by theKgirls on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 04:47:11 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I lived in D.C. for a few years. (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  winterbanyan, theKgirls

                  There are some great spots near D.C. that make for lovely little getaways.  The Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah Valley, for example, have some exquisite little spots, or did when I was there (1980s).  They are more breathtaking in the autumn when the leaves are turning, but living in MA you get to see that beauty every year anyway. ::envious sigh::

                  I used to say that when God created color, She started in New England and gave the rest of the world what was left over....

        •  Wonderful statement! (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JaxDem, winterbanyan, NCrissieB

          TKG - This is my sentiment exactly:

          If you define christianity as helping those less fortunate, caring for others, loving your fellow man, and all those things that religion used to stand for, before the Christian Right began defining it.  As Gandhi said "I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."  Maybe when those particular "religious" people see a caring, compassionate administration, they will rethink their opposition.

          Also, couldn't agree more with your sig line.

    •  Isn't it wonderful that most of McCain's voters (8+ / 0-)

      are looking forward to an Obama administration? That says a lot about how well he's managed the transition, as well as what kind of man he is.

      I love the fact that our new president is an articulate man who's just plain good.

      Here--I'm sure you've all seen it, but it's worth rereading. Slate recently published the "top 25" Bushisms.

      Top Bushisms

      I think the most telling one from the list is this choice bit of unintended honesty:

      "I'll be long gone before some smart person ever figures out what happened inside this Oval Office."—Washington, D.C., May 12, 2008

  •  mornin' ncrissie! (9+ / 0-)

    that kula, what a party pooper, huh?  just getting ready to go to sleep, but i checked here one last time, and i saw that you had posted.  all the parties are a bit over the top, but the country needs a break after 8 years of misery.  so, all the naysayers should just get on the train and enjoy the ride....

    larger version and more pix

    I didn't get Jack from Abramoff...I'm not a Republican!

    by nonnie9999 on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 03:00:47 AM PST

  •  Well, the proprietary software favored (5+ / 0-)

    by HBO did not interact well with either a MAC or a linux box.  So, our household, not having cable either, didn't get to see the pre-inaugural at the Lincoln Memorial.  We watched the snow pile up, instead.

    Why God has to be invoked at every turn is a bit of a puzzlement.  However, having recently become familiar with how religion was an integral part of pre-Revolutionary colonial government, I have a greater appreciation for why the Constitution rules out secular jurisdiction over establishments of religion, as well as a better understanding for why keeping them separate is an on-going effort.  The real problem isn't the moral principles espoused by religion; it's the competition by the various sects for the attention of the secular government.

    Since establishments of religion are in the business of telling people how to live, they seem naturally attracted to any entity that might help them be more effective.

    How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

    by hannah on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 03:13:27 AM PST

    •  I'm sorry you can't see the concert, hon. :( (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hannah, kktlaw

      I didn't even think to check if there was a Mac/Linux-compatible version out there.  My apologies, and I do hope you get to see it soon, because it's truly amazing.

      As to religion, there were two impulses at work in the decision not to establish a state religion, and they're reflected in the two religion clauses of the First Amendment.  The first, as you suggest, was to avoid the sectarian competition for the status of official state religion, and that's reflected in the Establishment Clause.  The second was to ensure that people could practice the religion of their choice, and that's reflected in the Free Exercise Clause.

      The Framers believed a secular government was the best way to both protect government from religion, and protect religion from government.

      •  I got a scoop on Rick Warren yesterday. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem, NCrissieB

        My friend's ex had a massive stroke on Thurs. Her (their) sons wanted to go to Saddleback services on Sat. night. Warren preached the last sermon before he left for Washington. He told the congregation that he had been sued the day before by a group objecting to his use of the word "God" in the inaugural prayer. Warren, evidently, was guffawing at the lawsuit saying that he hadn't even delivered the prayer yet, and how could anyone object to him using the word "God", since, after all, he is a preacher. So, I figure we'll be hearing that word a lot in his prayer tomorrow.

        •  Rick Warren needs to call Jeff Lieber.... (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JaxDem, winterbanyan, AJ in Camden, kktlaw

          Jeff, our resident expert on the subject, could teach Warren the appropriate application of SYFPH.  Because Warren could sure learn a lot about doing that.

          There are times to be bold, and there are times to be humbly grateful for having been honored.  Warren ought to look at tomorrow as the latter, rather than the former.  It'd probably help if he spent less time in the echo-chamber of his church....

    •  Same here - the streaming was awful on a Mac (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NCrissieB, AJ in Camden

      Even thought I had flip4mac to handle the WindMedia format.

      I tried again in the middle of the night and it worked much better, but then halfway through it just stopped.

      I saved off the file, so I have half of it, lol.

      The crooks are leaving office, unprosecuted and scot-free.

      by BentLiberal on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 04:08:06 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  awwww.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kktlaw

        I feel bad.  German Beloved just tried to open the link too, from Germany, and it wouldn't open for her either.  It seems to work for only a small number of us, and here I was hoping I'd found a way to share it with everyone.

        I hope you can find a way to see all of it soon, BentLiberal! ::apologetic hugs::

        •  morning, NCB and all... I didn't get to see it (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ms badger, NCrissieB

          (the concert) yesterday either... didn't have time to stream it on the laptop (busy doing homework) and thought I'd be able to see it on HBO anyway, since it was "free."  Well, last month I cancelled the extended cable service which gave me channels above 100, so when I went to HBO my cable box said it wasn't available, even though I was on the right channel for the concert.  Needless to say, I wasn't happy.

          I am happy for the HBO link you provided, but I haven't tried to view it yet.  Will do so later today.

          I agree with others in thinking that the festivities are NOT over the top, because we do need (as a country) this time and event to come together, bask in the moment, and prepare for road ahead.  My vision of that road has Obama a few steps ahead of the crowd, waving for us to follow him.  I love the community service-oriented day today as a part of this event.

          I have been thinking a lot about the hand of a higher power in Obama's journey to the White House.  My experience is that signs are pretty obvious when the journey is on the right road, and my first inkling of the signs was the interesting way the important dates in the civil rights movement have coincided with dates of Obama's important moments on this journey.  Two milestones in history took place the same week as the Democratic Convention:

          • Hillary Clinton spoke on the same day when the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified in 1920 (Aug 26), that gave women the right to vote
          • Obama accepted the nomination the same day as MLK, Jr's "I have a dream" speech

          I think there was another, but I can't think of it at the moment. That is when I knew he would be our next president, when I realized the stars were aligning just as they were supposed to and Obama was right where he was needed to be.

          And this week, Obama is inaugurated the day after MLK's birthday. What a wonderful moment in US to have this link this year... of two important days side-by-side, like it is supposed to be this way.

          Ok, that's enough of my ruminations this morning. Have a great day, everyone!


          Yes We Did!
          I am droogie6655321!
          EENR

          by Scubaval on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 06:22:40 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Hi Scubaval... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Scubaval, NCrissieB

            I think the "others" are"

            The 20th is the 200th anniversary of Abe Lincoln and today is (actually the 15th was, but today is the national holiday) the 80th anniversary of MLK's birth.

            I have been thinking a lot about the hand of a higher power in Obama's journey to the White House.  My experience is that signs are pretty obvious when the journey is on the right road, and my first inkling of the signs was the interesting way the important dates in the civil rights movement have coincided with dates of Obama's important moments on this journey.

            You are so right; I firmly believe there are no coincidences in life.  And I as well believe the "signs" indicate Obama is fulfilling a destiny.  

            As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. -John F. Kennedy

            by JaxDem on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 06:46:15 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  I enjoy meaningful patterns :) (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Scubaval

            As an artist, I very much enjoy meaningful patterns, which is to say I enjoy finding meaning in patterns, even if I'm creating the meaning.  The more rigorous empiricist in me is a skeptic, but the artist tells the skeptic to hush ... or I'd never write a book!

            So, rather than either agree that the stars have aligned to bring us Barack Obama just in the nick of time to guide us through the new epoch that will begin on December 22, 2012 - the astronomical grand conjunction - or disagree and say that's a bunch of superstitious hokum ...

            ... I'll simply enjoy the meaningful patterns ... and hope we all work our asses off to give them meaning!  How's that for a dodge?????

            And good morning, sweetie! ::losta squeaky wetsuit scuba-style huggggggggggggggggs::

  •  Today... (6+ / 0-)

    is Martin Luther King Day and our National Day of Service.
    I'm painting rooms in one of our homeless shelters and contributing some food for a special food drive.  
    What are you doing?

    All shall be well again, I'm telling you. Let the winter come and go. All shall be well again, I know. (S Carter)

    by MinervainNH on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 03:14:22 AM PST

    •  Herself, the Springoffs, and I ... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ms badger, MinervainNH, Shuruq, kktlaw

      ... will be helping to clean up one of the parks in our area.  I don't know which one yet, as we'll find out when we get there.  And yes, a National Day of Service is an excellent idea.  We need to learn the value of doing for each other, whether big things or small, because we're going to need that spirit as we face the challenges ahead.

    •  thank you! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ms badger, NCrissieB

      I think I'll round up some non-perishables here and drop them off to a food bank.  Can't do any service-oriented work today, unfortunately, but will do so on another day in exchange.

      Thank you for your service today!


      Yes We Did!
      I am droogie6655321!
      EENR

      by Scubaval on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 06:24:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  good morning folks (8+ / 0-)

    Checking in from PG County, Maryland. My niece and I are headed to Capitol Hill shortly to get our tickets to the swearing-in ceremony. I'm still pumped up, even after standing at the Lincoln Memorial for hours at the concert. What a wonderful weekend it's been, and the best is yet to come!

    Happy MLK Day of Service!

    -7.38, -5.23 I'm celebrating Barack Obama's victory. Catch me with the protests after 01.20.09.

    by CocoaLove on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 03:28:10 AM PST

  •   Morning Crissie (5+ / 0-)

    Thanks for doing this.  I slept in today and then had to go for my run, so I am just stopping in to say hi.

    One more day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Don't believe everything you think.

    by EJP in Maine on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 04:07:57 AM PST

  •  Had a rough 2008 . . . (10+ / 0-)

    . . . lost my Mom, job, and had some medical issues in the household as well, but I remained dry-eyed throughout.

    The same can not be said for yesterdays' concert on the Mall

    Almost made it, but when I saw Bruce and Pete up there on stage--starting to tear up at just the memory--I went into almost full-on bawl. Had to leave the room for a sec cause I didn't want to freak out my three year old.

    They were tears of joy, though, just thinking how happy I was and how great it must have been for Bruce and Pete, both as long time political activists to see their dreams come true as well.

    Especially Seeger. I mean, sheesh, he's practically 112 and still advocating for causes just as fiercely as he was in the '50's. Always has been a real hero of mine.

    If 2008 was a personal nightmare, 2009 is already starting out like a wonderful dream

    •  awwwwwwwwww {{{gauchova}}} (7+ / 0-)

      Thank you for sharing such a poignant and beautiful comment!  I'm sorry 2008 was such a horror for you - for us it was 2005, for similar reasons - but I pray that our 2009 will indeed usher in a wonderful dream!

      And yes, to see Pete Seeger and Bruce Springsteen together, singing all of the verses to that lovely social justice anthem "This Land is Your Land" ... oh my ... what a moving experience.

      And then for that to be followed up with "America the Beautiful," led by Beyonce (I never knew she had that voice!) but joined by every artist who'd participated in the event ... I just sobbed and sobbed and sobbed.

  •  Barack Obama interview coming up 5-10 minutes (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, Scubaval, NCrissieB, AJ in Camden

    on Tom Joyners show, from Ben's Chili Bowl.

    Best interviews, by far, for the last 3 years, have been the monthly's on TJMShow.

    •  UP NOW-from Blair House (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem, NCrissieB, AJ in Camden
      •  Concert-kids embarassed if he danced (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem, NCrissieB

        Letter in Parade-family is doing community service today.

        TJ's efforts in the campaign....1 radio show he has to make sure he did this week.

        Tom's granddaughter getting the invitation to the Easter Egg Roll.

        Roland Martin trying to get interview, Cybil trying to get a date with Reggie, Jay Anthony Brown only wants a "hey Jay Anthony Brown" shoutout.

    •  hey bbguy. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NCrissieB, AJ in Camden, bamabikeguy

      Haven't seen you since last week.  Hope all's well.  Got the 9 mo. old, just walking grandson this morn so time is short for me.  Thanks for the heads up on Joyners.  All atwitter about tomorrow...

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. -John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 05:04:15 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh yikes ... I remember that age well.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem

        I think I still get jittery, just remembering it ...

        ... what was that noise? ... where did he/she go? ... what is he/she into now? ... and most of all ...

        ... when will he/she go to sleep so I can draw a breath without worrying I'll miss something in the act of breathing???

        •  oh yea... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          winterbanyan, NCrissieB

          eariler I knew I was pushing the limit when I heard splashing.  Forgot to put the toilet seat down.

          As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. -John F. Kennedy

          by JaxDem on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 05:18:04 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I hope Springoff the Third won't see this.... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            JaxDem, winterbanyan, AJ in Camden

            ::chortling::

            I don't think he reads here (he's 28), but if he does he'll recognize himself.  My ex and I had gone out to dinner with Springoff the Third, then only three, and I'd taken him to the restroom.  Well, it was a small, mom'n'pop restaurant and he wanted to be a big boy, so after checking to make sure there was no one in the restroom, I ushered him in and let him "go all by myself."

            A few minutes later, just as I was starting to wonder if he'd found something he shouldn't be playing with, he waddled out into the dining area with his overalls around his ankles and said "Mommy, can you help with these?"

            I almost split a seam....

          •  LOL Jax... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            JaxDem, NCrissieB

            Boy do I remember that!  When my tribe were little I used to tell people, "If I had to lose a sense, let it be my eyes, not my hearing, because my hearing is all that stands between my kids and death."

            But for my hearing, I don't think I'd have been able to do one darn thing during those years except keep my eyes pasted to some toddler every single second of the day.  I admired deaf parents.  I can't imagine how they raise a kid without utterly losing their minds!

            "It's what you think you know that just ain't so that will get you into trouble." --Will Rogers

            by winterbanyan on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 06:20:09 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Mornin' bbg! (4+ / 0-)

      I hope the family, cats, dogs, goats, donkey, and the T-Rex you refuse to admit you're raising are all fine this morning. :)

      I don't know where TJ's show is, so I'll have to catch this on a replay at some later time.  But ain't it nice that we're about to have a Preznit whose name we're not askeered to mention without a clove of garlic handy?

  •  Thanks for picking up the slack, Ncrissie. (5+ / 0-)

    What nerve on Kula's part indeed. :)

    I can't wait to see the inauguration tomorrow.

    BTW, is there still time for shrub to hand out his despicable pardons or is it too late for that thankfully ?

    From Alabama to Obama - You've come a long way baby.

    by amk for obama on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 05:04:23 AM PST

  •  Two great days for the Republic........... (5+ / 0-)

      Two great days for the Republic coming up here, gang, and Crissie doing the fill-in for Kula, well how can we go wrong? Best wishes to you all!

  •  And MLK Day ... What a grand warm-up for tomorrow (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    winterbanyan, NCrissieB, addisnana

    (Apologies if you see this slideshow in more than one Comment today - not spamming, just remembering that I've had the honor to witness two great  Americans, who happen to be of a minority, stride across the stage of history as giants in my lifetime.)

    Photobucket

    1/20/09 ... What a day!

    by dmhlt 66 on Mon Jan 19, 2009 at 06:53:05 AM PST

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