September 9th, 2004


avocadoh sent me email:

> I can't believe you let the entire Republican National Convention, not
> to mention the latest fearmongering by Dick Cheney, go by unblogged
> upon. are you on vacation or something? :)

Actually, I was, but that's not the reason. I didn't really watch the RNC, since I figured it would just make me mad.

Also, I'm pretty disappointed with Kerry. His campaign just seems to suck. It's depressing. It seems like there's plenty of obvious real issues he should be emphasizing, instead of focusing on all the Vietnam stuff (which he should've realized would backfire, and should've had a better counter-response plan ready for).

One particular thing that annoys me is that when the candidates and pundits talk about the Iraq war, they only discuss it on its own merits. In my mind, the bigger issue is that regardless of whether it was a good thing by itself (and whether the aftermath was unavoidable or due to incompetence), in the big picture, it was clearly a huge strategic mistake--it diverted almost all our resources from Afghanistan, which is continuing to slide back into chaos, and al Qaeda, which is still alive and well. (There's a good article in the Atlantic this month about it.) It seems like that's an easy point to make, and Kerry hasn't been making it.

I guess I have stuff to blog about...I just hate thinking about it.

on a happier note

Over the weekend we flew to Maryland to visit my sister Teresa, her kids, her boyfriend Craig, and their new huge modern luxury house on the Magothy River (which I always insist on pronouncing "Maggotty", for no good reason). Miranda had no trouble on the plane trips, even though we were delayed in Denver for over three hours because of a missed connection; she just thought it was another neat place to smile at people. Her sleep schedule did get kind of whacked once we got there, even though we kept her on Pacific time, but overall it was a very successful first trip.

Teresa's kids--Fiona and Mila, who are 11-year-old identical twins, and Arlen, who is 10, are the most beautiful kids ever (along with Miranda, of course). It turns out they're also extremely dangerous.

Teresa had bought Craig a poker table and personalized chips for his birthday (Craig is, among other things, a big-money gambler), and I felt like playing, so I asked the kids if they wanted to play just for fun. I was starting to distribute chips when Teresa called down from upstairs: "Are you guys playing poker?"

"Yeah," I said.

"Are you playing for real money?"

"No, we're just messing around."

"That's against the rules. If you're playing at the poker table, you have to play with real money. No exceptions."


"I don't want them to get into bad habits."

It makes sense, actually; if you're not playing with real money, you're likely to play really loose, which will get you in trouble if you get used to it and start playing the same way when you do get into real money.

So we played 10/20-cent limit hold'em with their allowance money against my cash, and they kicked my ass.

Those kids are ruthless check-raisers.