Uncle Harry

This is my dad’s uncle Harry, my grandma’s brother. I’m guessing this had to be taken in the early 60s or late 50s, just looking at the women in the background. I love how he looks like a guy I would know now–overalls, goofy chin hair, cool hat, mischievous grin, and long duster.

The weirdest part, for me, looking at that picture is that that is my dad’s ear. I would recognize it anywhere. And there it is, stuck on the head of a dude I don’t know and who otherwise doesn’t really look like the members of my family I do know.

I have to dig out the pictures I have of him in grade school, because I’m remembering that same grin.

Harold’s middle name was Eugene, but his brother’s name was (and I am not even kidding you, history buffs) Stanley Taft Robinson. He was born in 1910, so I’m going to assume he was really named after President Taft.

That tickles me so much. But I am shocked to learn that my Aunt Vada is indeed really my aunt. I always thought that my Grandma was the youngest and that Vada was her neice, Floyd’s daughter. But no, though Floyd had kids my Grandma’s age, Vada is indeed her sister (and Auntie Vi her sister-in-law).


This Obesity Task Force thing is giving me almost “going to a new doctor” levels of anxiety. I wrote a post about it over at Pith and I kept waking up last night thinking, “there’s still time to call Jim Ridley and beg him not to run it.” But what would be the point?

Honestly, I think I still believe that, if I just keep my head down and go along, I will at least get a pass as not like those other fat people. They may be disgusting, but I have an excuse. And not only is that a bullshit, unfair place to live in your own head, it’s just not true. No one who looks at me doesn’t see that I’m fat. And no one who looks at me who doesn’t know me and who thinks I’m disgusting gives a shit about whether I’m fat for a good reason.

Even this post I’m having trouble writing.

It’s funny. I can write about all kinds of intimate things without giving it a second thought, but when it comes to talking about the shape of my body, the whole thing makes me want to throw up.

I’m still thinking about how it’s a member of the Obesity Task Force, a guy I really like and respect, who told me I should read the report that contains that image you see in the post below this. He sent that report knowing that I’m obese. And knowing that image is in there.

Do I think he meant for it to cause me to wonder if he fucking hated me? No. I think that, because he’s taken on this “problem” as his “problem” and it’s not something that directly affects him, he didn’t even consider that picture. To him, it’s just an illustration that, generally, says “Obesity is kind of gross, we need to do something about it.”

He didn’t even think about how I would see that as something that means that he thinks that I and the people I love who look like that are gross, that we are some kind of disappointment to evolution, how we even look stupider and more disgusting than regular people, and how we’re silly and obsessed with food.

He didn’t think that I would see those images and identify with the people in the images. He thought I would see those images and agree they were a problem.

At least, that’s what I tell myself, because I can’t stand to think that a guy I like would take joy in rubbing it in my face that he thinks I’m disgusting.

And, you know, the whole thing would be less problematic except he’s on the Obesity Task Force. That image comes from a presentation another guy on the Obesity Task Force gave. It’s on the Obesity Task Force website.

How much clearer could they be that these are their unexamined assumptions about obese people?

And I want to sit here and be like “Whatever, idiots. Your loss if my fat ass prevents you from getting to know me.” and then move on with my day.

But they’re running a state-wide initiative.

And they don’t seem to have any obese people on their task force (I’ll admit, I just googled 40 of them, but there’s only 140 people on the task force. If obese people were represented on the task force in any numbers like our percentage of the population, you’d think I’d have found one).

And their art and words could not be clearer about their assumptions about obese people. I mean, that art shows us as literally stupid and frivolous.

I don’t want to say anything. I find it painful and more anxiety-producing than anything else going on right now.

And they may not even listen to me. Or it may just reaffirm to them that obese people have to be dealt with like a public menace because we just refuse to get with the program.

But I feel like I can’t just sit here and say nothing, either.

But I feel like throwing up about it.

The Obesity Task Force

Today is Obesity Task Force Day on the Hill and I have been trying to discern whether the obese will be able to use this task force to do tasks we need done (I, for instance, could use some help with weeding) or if the task force will give me tasks to accomplish. I have become the person who makes fun of the obesity task force.

I joke, because, of course because it’s kind of funny to watch well-meaning people pretend like it’s not about finding you disgusting and wanting to ensure no further people like you exist in the state, that really, it’s about health.

I mean, please. If it was about health, why didn’t they call it the Healthy Tennesseans Task Force?

Well-meaning people never like it when you point out that you understand that they hate you. No, no, we don’t hate you, we just find you disgusting we think you need to “be healthy.”

Well, I’m not going to be healthy (or less disgusting looking). I’ve got some shit going on with my body (which, if you read here you know) and it is what it is. Since some of the shit going on with my body is an incredibly common thing they estimate one in ten women has, whether she knows it or not, I imagine a lot of the women and girls you look at and feel disgusted by are concerned for their health are also experiencing the same thing.

I can’t tell you how incredibly angry it still makes me that I saw doctors my whole life who were all, “You’re too fat.” “You’re lying about what you’re eating and how much exercise you’re getting.” “You must loose weight.” and it wasn’t until I was in my mid-thirties that a doctor said, “Hmm, if even part of what you’re saying is true, something is not right here. Let’s investigate.”

And, lo and behold. I was/am stuck with this ongoing crap I will have to medicate myself about for the rest of my life. But which I have always had. It was always there, just waiting to be discovered.

Do I still wish I were going to wake up one day and weigh 155 pounds? Not as much as I did, but yeah. Sometimes.

But here’s the thing. I don’t want to devote my life to it–I don’t want to devote my life to shit that has, my whole life, made me miserable. Maybe that makes me a weak person to admit that in public, but that’s the truth. I have been on the “if only I try harder, then [that person will love me/I’ll be thin and beautiful/all my dreams will come true]” merry-go-round my whole damn life.

And fuck it if I’m going to sit here and have some state task force dress it up like, if I don’t try harder, I’m failing the people of Tennessee.

People of Tennessee, I’m playing in the garden. I’m taking my dog to the park. I’m lounging in the hammock, talking to my friends and watching the cats hunt. I pay my bills on time. I pay my taxes. I’m not giving meth to your children. I’m living a good life, that makes me happy; I’m not failing you.

There’s nothing about me to be afraid of. It’s not actually unpleasant to be fat (nor is it pleasant). It’s just having a body.

I know you mean well, Obesity Task Force, but I also get that you hate and are disgusted by me.

I have gotten that message my whole life (ironically enough, even back when I weighed 155 pounds).

And I’m here to tell you that drumming into a fat person that you are disgusted by her are concerned about her “health,” may indeed make her desperately wish she were not fat, but it has done NOTHING to make us a less fat society.

I looked at the Tennessee Obesity Task Force page. And these are their targeted areas:

  1. Increased physical activity.
  2. Increased consumption of fruits and vegetables.
  3. Decreased consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages.
  4. Increased breastfeeding initiation and duration.
  5. Reduced consumption of high-energy-dense foods.
  6. Decreased screen (TV/Video) time.

Notice there’s nothing about improving neighborhood safety so that kids can play outside or walk to school. Nothing about addressing levels of pollution and the rise of asthma in our population. Nothing about early screening and treatment of endocrine disorders. Nothing about addressing whether people can get timely health care for conditions that, if left untreated, could make it harder for them to be mobile.

It’s all about how, if people are fat, it’s because they are fucking up.

And yet, it’s somehow impolite for fat people to react with hostility to the hostile message we’re being met with, because people mean well.

I know I’ve told this story a million times, but I think of it often, how a history professor we had told us about how all the “good” women of Chicago who were benefactors of Hull House would go into the tenements and hold classes teaching the women in the slums how to cook eggs properly and how to properly keep their apartments clean. And this program went on for a while until one of the immigrant women said, “It’s not that I don’t know how to cook eggs; I’ve got no money for eggs. It’s not that I don’t know how to clean my home; our only window opens onto the vent for the coal-fired furnace.”

And here we are, a hundred years later, and the Obesity Task Force has discerned a problem and is going to come in and teach us all how to eat and move around.

Well, the poor people whose lives you’ve diagnosed from the outside are going to discern the same strain of clueless bullshit from you guys.

And I’m writing this post so that when it happens I can sit back and say, “I told you so.”

But I’m a bitch like that.

Yes, Another Post about the Tree

I don’t even care how ridiculous it is to blog about a tree. I am delighted by it. I went out last night to just watch the breeze pass over the leaves, to feel the trunk, and to just enjoy it. We’re wondering, exactly, how much to water it. They recommend you water a new tree pretty frequently, and the Butcher got everything wet as he was putting the tree in the ground.

But then we stood there and wondered, should we water it some more, even with as wet as the ground is? I mean, it’s a bog in our front yard. Shouldn’t osmosis keep that tree good and watered? I think I’m going to keep the top wet but not soak it or anything.

I don’t know.

Anyway, I was reminded, last night, watching the leaves get used to the wind in the front yard, of that marvelous conceit in The Magician’s Nephew that the tree from Narnia that stood in London would wave in Narnian breezes, even though in our world.

I haven’t thought about that in a long time.


So, Kleinheider got let go today. I kind of want to say exactly what I said last time. It just bums me out, is all. I mean, really, JR and them are going to do fine. Post Politics will be fine and it will carry on. Blah blah blah.

If you had to pick someone to do Post Politics, if Kleinheider were unavailable, JR is the perfect choice.

But whatever Post Politics is, and what Volunteer Voters was, it is because Kleinheider invented it and then worked it out real-time, while we all played along. And it’s obvious that SouthComm has some sense of the importance of what Kleinheider got up to, because, even after they kicked him to the curb, they were smart enough to stick someone talented in the driver’s seat.

So, it just sucks.

But what can you do?

Henry, The Magnolia

The Butcher just sent me these pictures. Which, of course, means that he planted the tree himself, because he kicks so much butt. I forgot to tell him that I named the magnolia “Henry.” Not that it matters. I named the new kitty, “Pumpkin” and he just calls her “New Kitty.”

Is Lefty Frizzell My Neighbor?!

In “doing research” (read: looking on Wikipedia) for my post last night, I learned that Lefty Frizzell’s final resting place is at the Forest Lawn Memorial Gardens in Goodlettsville. If this is true, I have driven past this cemetery countless times. It’s right by our Jack in the Box. I know, it’s kind of unimaginable that I wouldn’t have gone to this cemetery, but cemeteries with on the ground headstones aren’t usually that interesting to me.

Still, now I feel like I should stop by and say hello.

Always Late with Your Kisses

All it takes is listening to really talented artists turn in not-quite-right versions of Lefty Frizzell’s “Always Late (With Your Kisses)” to start a girl to wondering what exactly Frizzell is doing in this song that is so hard to replicate in any kind of satisfying way. I mean, when Dwight Yoakum, Merle Haggard, and Willie Fucking Nelson can’t quit scratch your itch for this song, you know there’s something going on in the original you need to pay closer attention to.

Let me just admit, up front, that “Always Late with Your Kisses” is a deceptively cheesy song. The piano is kind of going “oompa oompa” in the background and the lyrics are kind of corny and repetitive in that way that makes it hard for non-country music fans to get into country music.

But, like I said, this is a deceptive song. Let’s set aside Frizzell’s delivery for a second and just listen to what’s going on in the background. You might have to turn it way up, but listen to how the guitar comes in under his voice, and then the piano, both kind of discretely showing off. You can hear it more clearly once Frizzell stops singing and every instrument is given a chance to shine, but I would just point out that nothing going on during the official solos is nearly as interesting as what the guitarist and pianist get up to in the background after that interlude. It’s a little like thinking you’re going to eat a Quarter Pounder and biting into a steak.

(And I know someone I listen to regularly has quoted liberally from what the fiddles are doing in this song, but I can’t for the life of me place it so it’s driving me a little crazy.)

But the fiddles are a good place to listen to get a good sense of what Frizzell is up to vocally, too.  The fiddles are each doling out notes that clang together in really lovely dissonance. You can hear it in parts of the steal guitar parts, too. Notes that don’t sound good next to each other somehow sound great next to each other in this song.

Frizzell is doing something like that vocally, too, I think. It’s genius for conveying the irksome frustration the speaker feels. But more than that, if you listen closely, it sounds to me like Frizzell’s whole range in this song is maybe five notes (with the exception of the few times he goes way high or way low), but within that condensed range, he’s hitting an enormous range of tones.

I’d love to see this transcribed–not how he wrote it but how he actually sings it, because I bet it’s like note, note-sharp, note-sharp-sharp, note-sharp-sharp-sharp. I mean, they’d have to invent notes to indicate how he sings tones that lie between regular notes (They’re almost like blue notes, I think).

It’s interesting to listen to the other guys, because these are talented singers, and each of them succumbs to the temptation of singing a broader range. And, to me, it sounds like each of them are changing key at least once, but does Lefty? I don’t think so.  Even where it seems like the song should naturally go much higher, “How long do you think I can wait, when you know you’re always late,” Frizzell doesn’t. That “late” and the next “always” are either the same note or fraternal twins.

I’m really frustrated with my lack of ability to talk about what Frizzell gets at with this song that most artists don’t, but here’s another thing. Nelson and Yoakam both start out with vocals. Frizzell’s version starts out exactly the way it ends, with the steal guitar. Nelson’s and Yoakam’s versions are set up like a story–you start some place, it builds, you trail off someplace else.  Frizzell’s goes no place. It just opens, delights, and closes again.

I wonder how deeply Frizzell was influenced by what was going on in bluegrass at the time. His vocal delivery really puts me in mind of what a bluegrass vocalist might get up to, but usually with one or two other people joining in. And something about the ways the musicians approach both their respective solos and their accompaniment when Frizzell is singing reminds me of it, too.

Here’s Bill Monroe for you to hear what I’m talking about (and you Cowboy Junkies fans, prepare to be tickled):

Anyway, Frizzell. I think you can also hear the yodeling influence (of Jimmie Rodgers!!!!) on this song. With a good yodel, you can, of course, showcase your ability to hit notes in a wide range, but you can also showcase your ability to make a lot of different noises in between two notes, which, obviously, Frizzell does.

I’m going to keep harping on this, but only because I think this is genius.

This is a real quote from an actual Tennessee politician and not Stephen Colbert

“I can honestly say that I look at President Obama and never think of him as a black man,” said Ramsey, R-Blountville. “I mean that. I look at him as a liberal Democrat who I think is taking the country in the wrong direction.”

I am not even kidding you. State Senator Ramsey a.) claims to not see Obama as a black man when he looks at him and b.) thinks that this is a good thing, a position that will inspire people to think that he’s not racist.

People, when you are using Stephen Colbert jokes as serious talking points… I don’t even know what to say.


I know the last time we had a “NoooooooOOOOOOoooooo” in a gardening related post, I had just accidentally poisoned myself. I will tell you up front that this is not the case again. But the Butcher and I were headed out this morning to get some mulch and some stakes for the new tree so that the Butcher can plant it tomorrow and I looked over and saw that where I planted the joe pye weed was completely under water.

The Butcher waits for me to say anything. I say nothing.

He says, “Let me guess. You’re thinking how all those seeds you planted last week probably just set sail down the driveway. And how you wasted all that money.”

To which I say nothing.

Because the Butcher is psychic.

My only hope is that, because the Joe Pye weed is supposed to grow and thrive under the very conditions in which I want to place it, that it has developed some sort of coping mechanism for being drown under inches of water.

Weekend Gardening Update!!!

I planted some lily of the valley along side of the shed. They were some tiny, crappy, really dry rhizomes that I got from Lowe’s, so I don’t know how they’ll do. But they were cheap, so I guess if only one of them comes up, it’ll be worth it. And everything I’ve read says those fuckers will spread like there’s no tomorrow, which would be nice for that spot.

At one point, I put one of the rhizomes in my mouth. Not in my mouth. I just held it with my pinched dry lips while I futzed with separating out the other rhizomes.

Half of you are gasping, and reaching for yesterday me in slow motion, “NooooooooooooooooOOOOOOooooooooooo!” and the other half of you are like “Um, you put that dirty thing in your mouth?” to which I answer “Not in my mouth. I just held it with my mouth.” To which a handful of you reply “That’s what she said,” and half of us giggle while the other half is still going “oooooooOOOOOOoooooo.”

Why are the No-ers crying “No?”

You see, lily of the valley is poisonous.

Which I did not know until I came in the house and decided to look it up on the internet to see if those rhizomes have any chance of springing back to life. And, as I was reading, I noticed that the left side of my bottom lip was going numb.

Anyway, spotty numbness in my bottom lip seems to be the extent of any poisoning. And, in a way, I’m hopeful. If there’s still enough gumption in that rhizome to do that, maybe there’s still enough gumption to make it grow.

I also planted another thing of parsley in my perennial bed, since I wasn’t sure if parsley is the kind of biennial that will reseed itself and the parsley I planted last year didn’t really get to be caterpillar fodder because I had no flowers with which to lure caterpiller-making butterflies.

But this year there will be flowers in the perennial bed!!!

I don’t really have anything I need to do in the garden this weekend, except some weeding, so that’s boring, otherwise, but you got a nice story full of danger, so there’s that.

Mysterious Magnolia

So, I went to buy a magnolia today. It’s harder than you’d think it purchase a magnolia. All I knew is that I wanted one that would grow very, very large, like the magnolias on the campus of Wake Forest, which were my first introduction to the plants.

Well, it turns out that there are all kinds of cultivars and most of them are pretty small, so that they better fit in urban yards. The guy at Bates was showing me two cultivars, Edith Bogue and Bracken’s Brown Beauty. The Bracken’s Brown Beauty supposedly gets a little bigger but the Edith Bogue was cheaper and looked more like the magnolias of my memory.

I asked if they didn’t just have magnolia grandiflora “no fancy name, just the plain old tree” and he said no AND that he wasn’t actually sure if any commercial nurseries in the area could get you a plain old magnolia. He suspected, no matter what they tell you, that they’re all some sort of cultivar that’s been bred to be more winter-hearty than the regular old magnolia usually is.

Well, I’ll be damned.

The Edith Bogue is supposed to get about 30 feet tall and 15 feet wide. That doesn’t seem that extravagantly monstrous. But it was too big to fit in my car, so it’s being delivered on Monday. And it’s probably about ten feet tall now, so if it gets three times that high, that’ll be nice.

My Chick Bad

I am a sucker for any song with a bass line that could easily be played by the best parts of a brass band (sorry, trumpets, but we don’t need more than two of you, one to make out with the flutes and the other to actually play your part. Not that we would have flutes in our brass band, but I assume you’d find flutists to make out with no matter where we took you, so I’m anticipating the situation. Really, there is almost no song that can’t be improved by six tubas and twelve trombones. Go ahead. Try to think of a song that can’t be improved by six tubas and twelve trombones. I defy you! It can’t be done. There’s only not more of it because the awesomeness is so… um… awesome that there’s a court order preventing it. You remember, Young Buck v. United States? Sure, yeah, established that only synthetic tubas can be used in hip hop in order to protect America from all that cool. Poor Young Buck, he fell off the face of the earth, didn’t he? You can’t really top rap tubas, though, so it’s understandable. If he’d used trombones, too, American music would have just had to close up shop and go home.).

Anyway, Ludacris. I can’t help it. I have a soft spot for the dude and I’m really loving his new song, “My Chick Bad.” But whatever you do, don’t go for the Trina, Diamond, and Eve remix, which totally undermines the whole best conceit of the song, which is that there is this one badass chick, with swagger, and crazy friends, and a volatile temper that this dude is just crazy for. Once you add in Trina, Diamond, and Eve, then it just becomes a song about a dude who has some chicks he admires.  But in the non-remix, there’s a really delightful hint of awe. I mean, there’s even a nice phrasing of “my chick do stuff that your chick wish she could.” Not “my chick do stuff that you wish your chick could,” but even the chicks who aren’t as awesome as his chick have agency.

I don’t know. Maybe contrasting it with the remix does make it more clear what’s so awesome about this song. Because once it’s about three chicks, it’s actually about the speaker, about how he’s so awesome that he knows three chicks like this.

But in the original, it’s just three and a half minutes devoted to how awesome that girl is, not because of how her existence reflects on him, but just because of how she is. In a way, it reminds me of “Gloria,”  (Heh, I was trying to find a YouTube video of “Gloria” only to discover the terrible world of bizarre The Doors coverbands. Anyway, here’s The Doors.) all passion and unfettered delight. You just so rarely hear songs in which men are unabashedly delighted about a particular woman. But I like it when you do.

Sadly, Someone Deserves the Biggest Tool of the Day Award, but We Don’t Know Who

People, don’t make me defend Jason Mumpower. I should be able to enjoy him slinking off the stage of history without a pang of regret.

But no, some asshole has to pull this shit and ask Mumpower if maybe it isn’t time for him to start a family?!

How about that’s none of your goddamn business? What kind of tool would even ask that question? Mumpower answered “almost shyly”?! He should have answered with a double bird.

What an asshole question.


I have heard asshole questions in my life, but this just about tops is.

Unless it affects state business in some way, who Mumpower fucks and when and to what end is not our business. It is incredibly rude and intrusive to ask someone about their reproductive status. And the Mumpowers don’t owe anyone an explanation for why they do or don’t have kids or when or if they’re going to.

Jesus Christ.

How is this an appropriate line of questioning for a political reporter?

And, here’s the thing, since it’s not your business, you don’t know. You ask a question like that, you risk forcing someone to talk about miscarriages or infertility or how they have put off having kids because they’re practically raising their sister’s kids or whatever. Personal family shit that is not your business.



And yet reporters still want to talk shit about bloggers.

Just a Reminder about the 60s

Oh, y’all, Blue Collar Republican is all worked up.

That being said, I plan to misbehave. I have no issues what-so-ever with those tossing a few bricks through windows or other appropriately directed ‘civil disobedience’. The cutting of gas lines and other actions directed at harming people I do have issue with.

The rest of you can take whatever course you wish, but for me the time for just standing around sipping tea is over.

And, bless her heart, Mary Mancini tries to remind him that “civil disobedience” doesn’t actually include throwing bricks, to which he counters

Oh my, you must have missed the race riots of the 60’s, the anti-war protests of the 70’s and your liberal anti-war March this past weekend with 9 arrests. I learned how to ‘misbehave’ from liberals back in my liberal days [emphasis mine]

Fair enough.

I would just like to offer two bits of advice. In the future, you might want to refrain from premeditating your ‘civil disobedience’ on the internet. It’s going to make it harder for your lawyer to argue that you’re a good person who was just caught up in the emotions of the moment. Instead, you’re going to look like the kind of dude who planned and calculated whatever it is you’re going to do.

Premeditation usually means a longer sentence.

I mean, you didn’t forget about that part, did you? Where the cops come and they arrest you and you stand before a judge who doesn’t have much sympathy for brick throwing being “civil” and you go to jail? And, hell, if you’re an interesting enough target and this is y’all’s 60s, they audit you for the next decade?

And you forget the worst part. John Rich is the music of your movement. And, don’t get me wrong, he’s a talented song-writer, but he’s not the best singer in Nashville. Is that really the voice you want over the montage of your exploits in your biopic?

Anyway, I look forward to watching your perp walk on the news.

Campbell County GOP, Don’t You Think It’s Time to Find a New Treasurer?

The treasurer of the Campbell County GOP is Mark Wells. He’s also on the Campbell County Board of Education, where, in his spare time, he spends years harassing a teacher and trying to get her fired because she didn’t want to date him.

And this guy is still the treasurer of the Campbell County GOP why?

Who would let their daughters volunteer there, knowing the lengths he’d go to if she rejected his advances? What woman would want to work there? And what message is the Campbell County Republican Party trying to send? That they’ll tolerate having a guy who would do this in their midst?

The EEOC found that he harassed her. Are Republicans just waiting to see how much money she gets out of the school system for looking the other way?

I don’t get it.

But you know, it’s funny. I read this post today over at Feministe, about Lisak’s research into campus rapists, who, as we’ve discussed, operate by camouflaging themselves as guys who’ve just made a mistake or are overzealous, who could be any guy, really, so they deserve our sympathy. I know we talked a little about how they’ve found that these are the same guys that go on to commit all kinds of abuse. In other words, there are a set of behaviors these guys learn and exploit in order to be able to do what they want to do–whether it’s rape or sexual harassment or abuse or what–while relying on others to provide them social cover.

Thomas quotes Lisak in regards to some of these characteristics.

In the course of 20 years of interviewing these undetected rapists, in both research and forensic settings, it has been possible for me to distill some of the common characteristics of the modus operandi of these sex offenders. These undetected rapists:

• are extremely adept at identifying “likely” victims, and testing prospective victims’ boundaries;

• plan and premeditate their attacks, using sophisticated strategies to groom their victims for attack, and to isolate them physically;

• use “instrumental” not gratuitous violence; they exhibit strong impulse

control and use only as much violence as is needed to terrify and coerce their victims into submission;

• use psychological weapons – power, control, manipulation, and threats – backed up by physical force, and almost never resort to weapons such as knives or guns;

use alcohol deliberately to render victims more vulnerable to attack, or completely unconscious.

Now, look at how many of these things fit the newspaper account of Wells’ behavior towards Keiser. He tested her boundaries by repeatedly calling her at home, using the excuse of needing to talk to her about work, at times that were inappropriate. I think this was also a way of isolating her, because when the calls come to your home on weekends, it’s obviously very unlikely that others will be able to witness for themselves the bad behavior. And then, of course, he attempted to use his position of power over her to punish and intimidate her when she didn’t comply with his wishes.

Now, obviously, Wells isn’t a rapist, so his bag of tricks isn’t exactly the same. But I point out the similarities to say this is not some dude who’s just a little over-zealous and clumsy when it comes to women. This is a dude who wanted to force a woman to do something she didn’t want to do and who wanted to be able to punish her when/if she didn’t comply and he used known and studied strategies for doing so.

Guys like this count on you believing that they’re just over-zealous and clumsy. They count on you making excuses for them, believing that this situation is something that could happen to anyone, instead of being a situation he set up and thought (and apparently rightly so) he could control.

Don’t protect him.

This isn’t a “mistake.” This is something he deliberately did wrong, for years.

The TNGOP is So Over Unemployed People. Perhaps It’s Time for Unemployed People to be Over the TNGOP

Just remember this, if you’re one of the one in ten people in Tennessee who can’t find a job or a member of a family of one of the 10% unemployed, when you go to vote in November. It was Democrat Sherry Jones who had your back this week. Republican Glen Casada is done with giving a shit about you. And this is the man Republicans want to put in a leadership position.

Hell, maybe Mumpower quit in disgust.

Mumpower Out of Power?

I’m still not sure what to make of Mumpower’s last-minute decision not to run for re-election. The filing deadline for candidates is in five days and the news, so far, has been conspicuously silent about who will run on the Republican side for Mumpower’s seat (and shoot, if there ever was an argument for the importance of running someone in every race, this is it).

Is there a pending scandal? Well, I don’t know, but I kind of doubt it. Too many people are coming forward to offer their well-wishes.  If he really were running from something, it seems like people would be keeping their distance?

Is he just burnt out? Eh, maybe, but he’s just my age. And, yes, he had some stumbles lately, with the losing to Williams and such, but as a young guy who seems pretty smart, you’d think he might bounce back from this stuff.

Is he pissed at his fellow Republicans? I don’t know. But the timing is weird. Where is the GOP candidate to replace him? Say what you want about Mumpower, but he was at the front of the Party while it was making huge gains. He and his fellow Republicans have given the Party a younger, somewhat more female-friendly face (I say, very, very loosely). And everyone thinks we’re going to end up this fall with a Republican governor and a Republican majority legislature.

Mumpower isn’t Moses. Nothing’s stopping him from reaching the promised land.


I don’t know.

It’s weird.

Edited to add: Now I’m hearing that Mumpower DID file papers to run last week. So… If I find a news source to confirm, I’ll link. But something seems to be hinky here.

Edited again: Here’s a news story confirming.