ordinaryjoe's blog

FEBRUARY 8, 2012 8:29PM

My first blog ever, anywhere

Rate: 10 Flag

This is my very first blog! I’m not a Luddite since I have used, in fact relied on, personal computers since 1983. My resistance has come from not needing to share my thoughts with the entire world.

To start, I have three different topics that I welcome others’ thoughts on. If you’re looking for political discussion, you’ll need to divert to one of the thousands of others blogs inhabiting Cloud Cuckoo Land 2.0. I have zero use for pointless and endless arguing and score-settling. (The cuckoos must really be chirping about Santorum though – let them enjoy the moment.)

First I will share some timeless Words of Wisdom, and want to hear yours, from the sublime to the ridiculous. My personal examples derive from recent time spent with my grown son who is talented in ways very different from me. He’s an artist and I’m very practical, and I felt he was lacking in basic survival skills even though he makes a decent living. The WOWs that I tried to impart are:

 a)      Half of being successful in life is remembering where the hell you put things down.

b)      Measure twice, cut once.

c)      Soap your screws (wood screws go in easy if you scrape soap or candlewax on the threads)

d)     Don’t waste time arguing with idiots. I guess that means a lot of the blogs here on OS, maybe mine too. Wait and see.

My next topic is about a political e-mail (OK, so I lied when I said I'm not interested in politics; doesn't everyone who writes about politics?) I got yesterday from a PAC that complained that most of the recycled paper from our fair state is being shipped over to China, and isn’t this a terrible shame, etc. At first I thought to say, “Right ON, bro!’”, and messaged my Congressman as they suggested. After reflection, I’m wondering if this isn’t exactly what ecologically-responsible folks like me should be praying for - that the stuff we buy from China gets packaged in recycled materials rather than cardboard made from virgin Asian forests?  What does it matter if it comes from middle-class American waste bins - do we have a better use for the stuff?  If the PAC told me that we could be using that pulp to fill potholes or build new buses I’d be with them in a flash. Truth is, we need all the exports we can generate. We import Sonys and Subarus but guess what the USA exports to Asia in huge amounts – Spam (the meat product), Kingsford charcoal briquettes, and honeydew melons in the summer when they swamp the grocery bins at home. Sorry about that, Silicon Valley - Appalachian hollers are the winners here.

Finally, I love Meryl Streep. Her performance in The Iron Lady (as Margaret Thatcher) surpasses all her previous ones, which I think have all been magnificent. My question is simply, how does she do it? How can she bring me to tears portraying such an unsympathetic character as Thatcher? What do you think – were you repulsed or saddened or both? I despised Ronald Reagan but the clip of them waltzing actually made me feel nostalgic.

Your tags:


Enter the amount, and click "Tip" to submit!
Recipient's email address:
Personal message (optional):

Your email address:


Type your comment below:
Welcome to Open Salon; Meryl Streep did a great job in the Holocaust and Kramer v. Kramer; haven't kept up with the rest but the Iron Lady seems like it might be worth checking out, although I'm not impressed with the real thing.
Thanks for the first comment, Zach! Natch, the "real thing" was a real monster who did a lot of damage to Britain and the world, but that makes Streep's ability to portray her as human all the more impressive. It was a great screenplay (I'll only say that she is suffering from Alzheimer's) and you'll probably like it.
Ok here goes the first question I haven't got a clue if half of that is correct so won't tackle that one. The second I agree why not send recycled paper to China but keep the plastic here they are doing amazing things with recycled plastic. Heard a guy on NPR whose company makes railroad ties and builds bridges with recycled plastic. He explained it this way it takes a lot of heat to mold it and that somehow makes it extremely durable. Anyway I thought that was very cool. And finally sadly, I don't get to the movies I wait for them to come to me. So I can pause them have a smoke and drink a beer or two with my feet up and shoes off. And let me also welcome you and rate your effort. A very pleasant ice breaker.

I haven't seen The Iron Lady but I've seen Meryl Streep in an awful lot and she is utterly amazing. To have surpassed previous performances would be an achievement almost physically impossible. That and she does things like learning violin or Polish for her roles - and not just dabbling.

WOW? I have one thing I tell people who are getting married:

If you approach marriage as a 50/50 proposition, expect to get divorced. Approach it as at least 80/20, with the 80 being yours. The reason is that the two of you will never define 100% the same way so, if you're doing 50% of what you see, you'll shortchange your spouse. Also, if you define your own expectation that high, you're less likely to resent what your spouse doesn't do; you just accept it up front and be grateful for what you get. If your spouse is worth marrying, carrying extra is worth it.

I'll give you recommendations on who to check out in PM. Better to avoid insulting whoever I leave out.
Thanks, Desnee and koshersalaami. Both your blogs are inspiring. And I'll try to put to the 80% concept into effect immediately - it's never too late!
so you started today,but I got to know you yesterday.You certainly made your first jump into the water and you came up with a grin on your face.
Welcome in to the crowd!!!
Words of Wisdom:

This one we have in common
"Where there is light,there is shadow"

Here is one that has been with me for all of my life:
"What you achieve in life depends very much on the strength of your desire"

Here is one more,also one of my favourites:
"If you love something,let it go.If it comes back,it's yours.If it doesn't,it never was"
Thank you, Heidi. Actually, I said, "where there is shadow there must be light", and I feel there is a difference in sense to your "where there is light, there is shadow", something like seeing a cup half full or half empty. My context was the Israel-Palestinian conflict which to me is the shadow of a past light of hope. I was walking in East Jerusalem just after the first intifada and came upon an old Arab farmer, who asked me in the kindest voice if I was one of his Jewish neighbors or a visitor. This single, simple event led me to spend the following ten years trying to make that vision come true. But eventually the shadows fell, I suffered personally, and the second intifada and second Bibi regime blew all hope away.
Do you live in Israel or in the US? Israel and the Middle East have troubled me all my life.As much as I like the idea of the state Israel,it disturbes me tremendously to see the suffering of the palestinians.
Israel is in a very difficult situation.The land was given to the then refugees,but taken away from someone else.
The Orthodox of Israel are in my eyes militant,and they are the ones who keep Israel from negotiating in a way that might bring peace to a troubled area.
I have met a family from the Lebanon.Most of the family memebers had been killed,and this refugee family told me about the terror they had faced.
Their oldest child of about 12 had beenhit by a bomb,and he had a scar running down his leg from top to his foot.
I don't know in what kind of mission you had been in Israel,but I certainly understand to the fullest how you felt about this poor man,the farmer,who's main concern had been to feed his family.
All of this is so sad;when I think about it,I could cry,not only about this region but others as well.
Thanks again Heidi, I answered your PM, but I didn't intend for this blog to get into politics at all, so I'm going to confine my thoughts about the middle east to commenting on other blogs.
Have a great sunday!!!
There has been this sensitive man on my mind ever since being in contact.I wanted to let you know that my comment on ONL was meant for more than one person.
As it happend,you were the one to respond.Good for you.I always appreciate people with good manners and a heart/consideration for others.
That has been a good start,and I am looking forward to your next blog post.
About your confinement:OK
I will be on the look out for comments.
Welcome to OS! I agree with you on writing about politics - strong as my feeling are on the subject I do my best to steer clear on my blog. "Don't waste time arguing with idiots." Amen. Also agree on Meryl Streep. Haven't seen Iron Lady yet but will soon.
To Heidi: I just wanted to reply briefly to your comment about Israel. From my 9 months there my impression is that the settlements and the settlers are the root cause of the problem rather than the posited general bloodthirstiness of Zionism. But you refer to "the Orthodox", and I think you should really understand the settlers as "ultra-Orthodox" who believe in the literal truth of the written word, primarily that God meant for the land to be inhabited by them. They are mostly immigrants from the US and followers of sects founded in Eastern Europe centuries ago. Many of them do not even support the state of Israel because it is not as strictly religious as they are. (I'm not sure where the fanatical Avigdor Lieberman fits in - I may have read that he became very religious only after emigrating from Russia.) I mention this because there are many "modern Orthodox" Jews in Israel and elsewhere who believe the illegal settlements should be removed, and are active in Peace Now and similar movements.

The other troublesome element in Israel that gets little attention nowadays are those who emigrated from North African and Arab countries where they had been persecuted by Arab governments especially after the War of Independence. They have little in common with the settlers but are even more rabidly anti-Arab (familiarity breeds contempt?) They are a large minority (high birthrate and low social status), if not a majority in Israel and vote as a powerful bloc.

Well, I said "no politics" but I just needed to clarify this.
Welcome. And Thank-you. When my novel is published and I'm offered movie rights . . . Streep will be the leading lady . . .

I've been blogging on the Salon.com platform since 2002, mostly about politics, but also occasionally about movies. (If I had more time, I'd blog more about the latter.)

Blogging is, I think, an important communication medium, and not just self-indulgence or self-promotion. The fact is that when corporate advertising revenue is such a consideration, we don't have "free speech" with the corporately owned and controlled media. We have speech that the owners and operators of the corporately owned and controlled media ALLOW, speech that is acceptable to our corporate overlords. If we want truly free speech, we have to create our own content.

All of us are touched by politics, which is why I am interested in it and why I write about it. You are correct, though; those of us on the right and on the left aren't going to convert each other, so bickering about it probably won't accomplish very much... (Still, it's fun to attack the wingnuts' "arguments," even though it's about as hard as is stealing candy from an infant...)

Movies probably are the most influential medium of our culture. Therefore, when movies and politics meet, I love it, and I often catch the political overtones of movies, even if others don't.

All of that said, while I haven't seen "Iron Lady," it is just a movie, and I don't know that anyone who was involved in making that movie knows enough about the real-life Margaret Thatcher to have made her the sympathetic character that I've read the movie has made her...

And I, for one, certainly am not nostalgic for the days of Ronald Reagan. Reagan began the dismantling of the working class and the middle class and the gross deregulation of corporations that has put us where we are today. Reagan was an AIDS-denying, union-busting, Wall-Street-weasel-loving piece of shit, frankly...
Okay so this is weird I was commenting on another's post and my computer hiccuped and took me to yours. SO believing there is a reason for everything I will stop and say welcome!
"I have zero use for pointless and endless arguing and score-settling."

You may not care much for OS, then.
Patrick - Like any big town, there are just some neighborhoods I try not to pass through on OS. Thanks for the sage advice though.
i dont care for streep. i like the lush gals like liz taylor
or keira knightley.

you come into our territory and make hay, sir!
what is all this,now?

a) Half of being successful in life is remembering where the hell you put things down.I PUT EM DOWN IN THE PERSONAL SPACE I REMEMBER. IF THEY STRAY,THEN THAT IS THEIR DAMN BAD LUCK. THEY MUSTA NOT BEEN IMPORTANT


c) Soap your screws (wood screws go in easy if you scrape soap or candlewax on the threads)I DUNNO WHAT THE F. YOU TALKING ABOUT . BUT IT IS NO DOUBT WISE?

d) Don’t waste time arguing with idiots. I guess that means a lot of the blogs here on OS, maybe mine too. FUCK YES. EXCUSE MY EXUBERANCE...I AGREE WITH ALL MY HEART. TIME WILL TELL. RE. YOU.

Streep? seriously?
how she does it is by her huge closet fulla accents.
and make up.

i actually like streep. i am too ironic.
i got no idea what u think about david hume.
but if ya got an opinion, go to con chapman.
this hypnotizing women stuff. all you seem to need is hume,
jan sand says. con too...........
hey...howya doin....good luck....have FUN!....but if ya jus want ratings.....cats.....flowers....
Hi James, and Steel Breeze! Don't recognize Steel Breeze but I will see what else you have to say. James, of course, is one of my favorite puzzlers. Having to think about what you write gets the gray matter shakin' in the mornin'.