Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Hula Hoop, Anyone?

Today, have decided to turn a new positive leaf ... and am trying to find a Hula Hoop. Have been reading that the newest, old trend is the Hula Hoop.

Regains your sense of peace, energy and youthfulness while trimming off some of those excess pounds. Sounds like my cup of tea! (Why is it my conversations always turn to food or shopping?)

This weekend, I plan to find a hula hoop in the local toy store. Lots more reasonably priced than the huge exercise machine my hubby wants to get me. "I'd never use it, " I tell him. "It would just gather dust or become a clothes hanger. Besides, where would I put something that big?"

He is just as sure that it could sit on the patio (and get rained on?). But summer is too hot, winter too cold, days too short and nights too dark for exercise -- and mornings? Way too early.

Am a pro at explaining why I didn't exercise. There's also the excuse that I don't have leotards ... or do, but can't stand wearing them out the door. Someone might see.

Bless those people who love to run and sweat. Am happier -- maybe lumpier -- but certainly happier sitting here with a glass of wine, some cheese and crackers. And maybe by the weekend, a Hula Hoop!


Friday, August 21, 2009

Told my hubby last night that I'd started a blog and his reaction was "OMG, will they know who you are."

"No, not really," I responded. "Well, maybe. But I've only started. No one is reading me yet."

~ ~ ~ ~

Watched Bill O'Reilly and heard the discussion about John Mackey, co-founder and CEO of Whole Foods Market Inc. Seems he wrote a column in the Wall Street Journal, offering some reasonably sound suggestions for health care reform.

Because he had the audacity to oppose Obama health care, he is now being denigrated by numerous sites and has even been targeted by a Facebook group formed to boycott Whole Foods grocery stores. The group claims to have 22,000 members as of today.

What did he say that was so awful? Try —

Equalize the tax laws so that employer-provided health insurance and individually owned health insurance have the same tax benefits. — Wish we had that when we were paying for our own insurance

Repeal all state laws which prevent insurance companies from competing across state lines. — Which means we can pick the company and plan we want across state lines

Enact tort reform to end the ruinous lawsuits that force doctors to pay insurance costs of hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.

Come on folks. Perfectly obvious and simply rational.

By the way, have you tried to read the House Health Care Bill?

A shambles of addendums and changes to changes for incomprehensible reading. And when they do make a statement, it is so obtuse, it requires two or three lawyers in the room to decipher.

On a humorous note, read the section on REQUIRING INFORMATION TRANSPARENCY AND PLAN DISCLOSURE (page 39 of SEC. 133):

"PLAIN LANGUAGE.—In this subsection, the term ‘‘plain language’’ means language that the intended audience, including individuals with limited English proficiency, can readily understand and use because that language is clean, concise, well-organized, and follows other best practices of plain language writing.

GUIDANCE.—The Commissioner shall develop and issue guidance on best practices of plain language writing."

Now, who's going to explain it to him?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

During my high school years, I wrote a column for the school newspaper using the pseudonym "aicram llennoccom" -- easily identifiable. But for me, it was just enough to make me feel I'd masked my identify and could lose my sense of shyness. After all, aicram wasn't me ... or was it?

These were tongue-in-check, Art Buchwald-esque columns with humorous approaches to things political, social, and of the moment. And, of course, all were decidedly liberal since I was a product of mid-state Illinois in the 1960's. We were the tiny band of Democratic rebels in the Bloomington/Normal twin cities.

My aunt introduced me to the local political party while I was in college, with party meetings at Lucca Grill -- still a Market Street corner landmark.

Times have changed mightily since then.

Living long enough, causes questions in not just your beliefs but your political affiliations. Today, I am a liberal -- which means I will vote for whom I believe is the "best" person and will try to filter all the information available to reach that determination. Sounds highfalutin, right?

Not like the old days, when (hate to admit) I would vote a party line. How many of the "bad guys" did we put in office that way?

For some time, I've seen things happen that made me want to applaud or yell or counter or just plain talk about. And blogging seems to be the new media.

So once again and for the first time, Aicram is about to blog. Real or funny, we'll see what happens.