So ... this last couple of months have been CRAZY. I will try to keep it short, but a lot of stuff has been happening.
• Wren Alise Ano was born. The hospital misspells name and now she birth certificate and social security card says Wren Alisa Ano. Error will cost us $40 to fix.
• The day after Wren is born, I realize I really do need to install her infant car seat. I move Clara’s children’s car seat over to make room. In the process of installing both seats, I herniate my disc again. Eventually I end up in ER not being able to walk. Good news, those seats are in there very tight and are not going anywhere.
• Wren developed a bad reflux and also cannot digest proteins. This makes her completely miserable and sick and we have to go through a series of different formulas. After seeing an allergist, Wren is on Neocate, a non-milk, non-soy formula that we have to order through the pharmacy (very expensive). She is also on Zantac for her reflux.
• I got sent to a Physical Therapist that decided that she was not going to Physical Therapy as the doctor ordered, but acupuncture/pressure and chiropractic procedures. Instead of doing anything for my back, she rubs my temples, pokes my hand with her pen and jams her hands into my shoulder. Tells me I herniated my disc because I have bad posture and not to go to bed with cold feet. I leave the office worse than I did before I entered. I make a request for new Physical Therapist , but that request takes four weeks. In the meantime, I am trying to do all my stretches that I used to do back when I injured my disc the first time in 2005.
• During this time, we are suppose to be moving. Last day at old house was suppose to be March 31st, but we just finished today (April 10th). Despite doctors orders, I pack, lift, and clean. We also have to pay the old landlord by the day to buy extra time.
• Our new house is a two story, four bedroom house with basement and garage. It has drinkable water from the faucets (that says more about the old house), central air condition, a large kitchen with a gas stove and a electric dishwasher. It has three bathrooms (two more than our old house) and it is cheaper rent per month and it is closer to work.
• Reacting to the chaos of a new baby and moving, Clara has been reverting in her behavior. After getting through “the terrible two’s” without being a terrible ... NOW she is. Every night has become a fight with her.
• The crazy neighbor at our old house decided to start stealing our lawn chairs, bird feeder and other items. We recovered most, but he insists he has nothing to do with why our stuff appears in his yard. Then, in the middle of the night he started to yell at us, swearing at us, telling us to leave. Police say that there is not much they can do without aggravating the situation, the best thing is to just get the heck out of that place.
* One of our bird got out of the cage at the old house while we were at the new house. Crazy neighbor informs us that our front door was open and he closed it for us (not without taking a look at inside enough to chat up our neighbors on other side about how much our house was a mess (imagine a house full of boxes and plastic bags a mess). Bird was never found.
• One of our cats died. Months ago, George Bailey got sick and we took to the vet. The vet did not know what the problem was, but gave him antibiotics and he got better. Then recently he got sick again, so we put him on antibiotics and he gets better again. Then we find him dead in the middle of the floor.
• That same day our oldest cat, Buster, had a really bad asthma attack and almost dies. Buster makes it through the night, but has stroke-like symptoms and has trouble walking. By the end of the week he had made a full recovery.
• Our third cat, “Kitty” (we never named her, because if we did, we would have to keep her ... and that was three years ago) decides that she does not know what is going on with the other cats, but she is NOT going in that cat carrier to move her to the new house and scratches my arms to bits.
• Summer, Abigail, and Emily are all doing well at their new schools. The twins have separate teachers for the first time. Summer is learning her times tables and Japanese.
• Work is busy, going to get busier very soon.
Wow, that was a lot and I am sure I am forgetting something.
- Tags:abigail, clara, diary, emily's health, my back, my job, pets, places of residence, pregnancy, summer, wren
I am sitting home on my couch enjoying our winter break, reading one of the many books I was given for Christmas. I am reading one those big fancy collections of graphic fiction. I do not get past the introduction because it already has pissed me off. It says that "cartooning is a relatively young art form."
What the heck? Where did this concept come from. As if comics were invented by The Yellow Kid. The Yellow Kid was NOT the first comic, nor was it even the first printed comic ... heck, it was not even the first color comic.
Scott McCloud defines comics as "juxtaposed pictorial and other images in deliberate sequence, intended to convey information and/or to produce an aesthetic response in the viewer." Do you realize that includes the oldest recorded art form in Earth's known history ... cave paintings.
Why is this myth of comics or cartooning being a NEW art form being perpetuated???
(This is in regards to Michigan House Bill 4770. See more at http://www.pridesource.com/article.html?article=50639
Dear Governor Synder,
Just imagine for a second, that instead "gay" this bill said "black". Would it be legal or even moral to have a law that said that "black" people could not get married? That "black" people are not allowed to share their health benefits with their partners? That "black" people are not allowed to visit or have any say if their partner was in the hospital? That it was okay for any landlord to discriminate "black" people from getting housing? That it was okay for any business to fire without cause, just because the employee was "black"? Would it justified if you saw a "black" person on the street and beat them to a bloody pulp and say that it was your protected religious speech? Or perhaps we should ban all "black" people from serving in the military?
The sad thing is, our country used to discriminate against black people. However, we have moved beyond such antiquated practices ... or have we? The Michigan legal system may have made it legal to discriminate against gays, but is that right? Gay rights are human rights! They do not want any other treatment that you or I get. Nobody in their right mind chooses to be gay. To be treated like a second case citizens. To have their rights taken away from them. To live in fear. There have been many studies saying that homosexuality is genetic at least can be related biologically one way or another. There is no definitive answer yet, so how can we say for certain that it is a choice one way or another? But to say it is legal to discriminate against gays ... why not women, or short people, or fat people, or redheads, or people with green eyes, or people in their forties, or perhaps just people with big noses?
Michigan House Bill 4770 is a bad bill because it is simply discrimination. That is why I ask you to veto the bill!
Whitmore Lake, MI 48189
P.S. to readers: If you agree with the above statement, go here to sign the petition: http://signon.org/sign/vote-against-public-employee?source=s.fwd&r_by=1488825
Turning 35 this month, I feel so old as the younger generation's technology has just blasted into the future. What upsets me when I hear the news that next year music companies are going to stop making CDs.
I mean I do not even have an iPod or iAnything. I want a CD! I am also old enough to remember when computers were unreliable and you always had to back everything up two or three times over. I have had enough of my old computers die on me having all my work lost on the hard drive. I do not want to lose all my music if I have a problem with my hard drive or misplace one of those tiny iPods (that I do not even have).
I like going to stores and buying music and going to one of the listening stations. I do not like downing music off the internet. I do not want my files "in the cloud". And am I the only one who misses vinyl records? I like the feeling of holding a vinyl record and putting it on the record player and putting the needle down and listening to music. I also miss that popping scratchy sounds you get from vinyl. Okay, I have upgraded to CDs for quality and all (and the fact that nobody makes records anymore) but still, it is an album I hold in my hand, place in the CD play and then listen to. It is something I own. Something I can touch. How can people own ones and zeros flouting in cyberspace? I put my music on my computer or "in the cloud" I do not own it anymore.
What next, are they going to stop printing books? I do not want to buy a Kindle or Nook, nor do I have the money for it either.
And get off my yard!
You know ... I would like to think of myself as a feminist. I hate how society objectifies women. I blame the media with TV, movies and especially advertising. I am not against using sex to sell things, as long as is a product that involves that. Using sex to sell underwear makes sense. This product will make you look and feel sexy. Mens cologne is stretching it a bit, but I can see where they are coming from. But beer and cars, I am sorry what is the product you are selling. Focus on the car, not the woman! Fabric softener??? Are you f-ing kidding me? Honestly, why do we have to try to make women so sexy. This halloween I noticed something. You search for men's costumes for a police officer, fireman, or referee and see what you find:
but look for those same costumes for women and you will only find sexy police officer, sexy fireman, or sexy referee
What do you see ... short skirts (or hot pants), and lots of cleavage. I am not against women wanting to look attractive or dress sexy if it makes them feel good. There is a time and place for it. But it is the point that women feel that they HAVE to dress that way to have worth. It should not have to be that way.
On Monday, I had only four signatures and was feeling kind of down. How was I going to get this ball rolling? It seems like it is starting to roll on it's own. I checked today and found I got 41 signatures. Good start for somebody who has never started a petition before. But there is still much more that needs to be done.
I hear there are bunch of "Occupy ___" and "Make Wall Street Pay" protests happening this weekend. If you are planning on attending one of these events, can you contact me please? I would love to get the word out at one of these events.
david dot ano at gmail dot com
oh ... if you have not signed yet, please do at http://www.change.org/petitions/the-us-senate-repeal-the-gramm-leach-bliley-act
Are you unhappy about the economy? Were you better off financially 12 years then you are today? Are you tired of the Banks making profits while you suffer? Do you want to stop the the recession from dipping again? Before we can fix the economy, we need to know how it broke in the first place. Repeal the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act!http://www.change.org/petitions/the-us-senate-repeal-the-gramm-leach-bliley-act
An open letter to Senator Levin, Senator Stabenow, and Representative Rogers,
The "Occupy" movements are all over the nation and the news. They are not going away. The people are speaking that we are unhappy with the way the government has run the economy. But the Occupy movements do not have a strong message. Because the general public does not understand why we are where we are today.
Most people do not know that was the Republican lead Congress that passed the "Gramm–Leach–Bliley Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999" that went on to cause the U.S. financial crisis of 2007-2009 and the Global financial crisis of 2008-2009. With the passage of this Act, commercial banks, investment banks, securities firms, and insurance companies were allowed to consolidate and went on to create sub-prime mortgage loans and new financial products such as the securitization of loan obligations of various sorts and credit default swaps that later became know as toxic assets.
The point here is, Wall Street is proven it is not going to regulate itself. They are not going to make any positive change without the government enforcing sound financial policies. Before we ask how we can improve our economy, we have to ask what cause the problem in the first place. That is why I am asking you to repeal the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act.
David AnoOkay ... I sent this to my Congressmen. Now it is your turn!
Sign the petition at:http://www.change.org/petitions/the-us-senate-repeal-the-gramm-leach-bliley-act
Find your US House Representative:http://www.house.gov/htbin/findrep?ZIP=
Find your US Sentor:http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm
CHESTER 5000 is currently on sale at Top Shelf.
$14.95 $11.25 (US)
I pre-ordered this book a long time ago. With rave reviews from Alan Moore, Rich Stevens, Lucy Knisley, The AV Club, The Comics Journal, Comics Worth Reading and others ... I wonder what I can say that has not been said before. This was a book enjoyed by both myself and my wife. It ground breaking book that shows that erotic comics can been well written and beautifully illustrated. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Long-term unemployment for Michigan hits record highThe state’s unemployed are staying unemployed for longer, despite a dropping unemployment rate, a state agency announced Wednesday. READ MOREMichigan Legislature approves cap on welfareThe state Legislature on Wednesday passed a 48-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits expected to cast more than 11,000 families off the welfare rolls on Oct. 1 — including more than 29,700 children, according to state officials.READ MORE
The people who go to DHS are not these "lazy welfare mommas" as the Republican try to sell you. These people used to work, but have been laid off and there are just NO jobs out there. The solution is not finding lower paying jobs, because we already did that years ago and those jobs are gone now too. Even McDonald's is not hiring, nor would they because you are "over-qualified". Nobody wants to hire somebody and then lose them when the economy gets better.
Life on welfare is miserable and you would do anything to get off it if you could manage to feed your own family. Cash assistance barely pays for anything. You cannot
pay rent on DHS cash assistance ... it just helps with some basic human needs.
I want to make another point. We are not "wasting our tax dollars" by giving it to unemployment and welfare programs. It is not like this money is being put into the savings account of the poor. This money goes right back to the people and business. When benefits get sent to the poor, it goes straight back out to pay for bills, food, medicine, diapers and other needs. Local business benefit from DHS cash assistance.
Instead you have a Governor that is cutting on schools, local governments and the poor and giving it back to big corporations. He has repealed consumer protection laws. He has set up emergency financial manager law that makes it legal to arbitrarily break union contacts and fire elected officials.
If you cut taxes on big corporations, what will they do with that money? Will the invest it to help grow our economy? Will they spend it on bills and food for the living breathing people of our community? No ... it is going into the pockets and savings accounts of their CEOs and stock holders.Sooner or later the voters are going to realize that the Republicans who were voted into office on the promises of creating jobs not only have not created any jobs, but have made the economy even worse in Michigan.
I have been disconnected for that last week at home. Going to pay the bill soon, but I am way behind on my internets. Sorry.
Coming soon! Look for it in Previews or ask your local comic retailer. Von is awesome & I bet this one will be too! More info @http://stargazer.vonallan.com/2011/07/stargazer-previews.html
Stargazer Volume Two is a 110-page graphic novel that will be available from better bookstores, comic book stores and online retailers world-wide beginning on October 12, 2011. There are a variety of ways to purchase a copy and I've outlined them below.
Ordering Through Comic Book Stores
You can pre-order Stargazer Volume Two through comic book speciality retailers beginning on August 3rd and running through the end of August. If you're not familiar with this process, comic book stores work a little differently than most other retailers: they order comics and graphic novels approximately two months in advance of the on-sale date through a catalogue called Previews (which is published by Diamond Comic Distributors). Diamond creates an order code for each and every item and retailers use these codes to order for their shelves. So, Stargazer Volume Two is “pre-orderable” in August 2011 with an order code of AUG111259. It then arrives in comic shops in mid-October and is “reorderable” from that point on. I've created a simple order sheet on the next page that you can print out, fill in, and then present to your local comic book shop retailer. They will order Stargazer Volume Two for you and give you a call when it arrives in stores.
Ordering Through Book Stores
As I mentioned, Stargazer Volume Two will be on-sale beginning on October 12th. You can simply go into your local bookstore and see if they have a copy. If they don't, you can easily place a special order through them and they'll get you a copy in a few days (you'll need the ISBN: 978-09-781237-4-1). You can also place a pre-order through your local bookstore beginning right now.
Stargazer Volume Two will be available in mid-October from a variety of online retailers, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Chapters/Indigo, and so on. You can find it easily by searching for the ISBN on any online retailer's website (978-09-781237-4-1).
On my drive to work we hear news about the economy NOT about the debt ceiling ... but only a little because we go back to debt ceiling later.U.S. Economy Slowed Sharply In First Half Of 2011
This is a good news, bad news and potentially really bad news:Good:
The US economy is still growing.Bad:
Growth down from last year and is not as good as it needs to be. Really bad: IF
the Republicans and Tea Party have their way in the House, growth will plummet even more, possibly sending us to another recession. Let me explain ...
Now, I have heard the story on three different news sources. It seems to me that all of the economists and financial analysts all agree what is the cause to the slow in growth in 2011. Consumer spending was almost flat this spring and Government spending fell. if consumer spending was flat then growth should be flat ... BUT it is not about consuming spending! IF GOVERNMENT CUTS ITS SPENDING, US GDP DROPS!!!
So throwing away what caused the economic situation in the first place (Republicans deregulating the financial market with the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act in 1999), what is currently causing our lack of growth is government spending cuts. So let us look at the Republicans plan for our current US debt crisis ... spending cuts and only spending cuts.
People! We have to stop being so damn afraid of taxes. In fact, let us stop calling it taxes for the moment and call it Revenue ... because that is what it is. We have to stop getting mad at the government for spending money. That is what they are suppose to do. That is why we elect and hire these people into office. We want the government to provide services! That is why we have a government!!! Taxes pay for things WE WANT!
We want a strong defense/military. We want social security, medicare and medicaid. We want to pay police and fire departments to keep us safe. We want roads that we can drive on and move freight on. We want to fund scientific studies that help cure cancer. We want to fund public schools and grow a work force that is competitive with the rest of the world. Not only that, but we want government jobs to help enforce and implement these things we want. If you want to fund all these things, you need to pay taxes
. All these Tea Party people do not want the government to take their money. You have to stop being greedy about "your money" and realize that this is "your government" and "your services"!
My debt crisis plan: (it really is quite simple actually)
1) Raise the debt ceiling. (Former President Reagan raised the debt ceiling 18 times. George W. Bush raised the debt ceiling 7 times. Why is okay for a Republican President to raise the debt ceiling and not a Democratic President??? It is also true that most countries have no debt ceiling. Very few countries limit borrowing precisely as the U.S. does. So during our economic time of need, why are we limiting ourselves? We need to spend to increase our growth and improve our economy. We have seen how cutting government spending is cutting GDP growth.)
2) Increase revenues. (Tax rates are currently lower than we have been since the 1950s. The polls show about 70-80% of Americans support tax increases to help address budget problems. Obama has proposed that all we have to do is cut tax loop holes for large corporation and the rich. In fact, all we have to do is raise taxes on the top 1% richest people in the US and we can balance our budget a lot better and the 99% of American will have their taxes the same.)
3) Cut spending on the military. (For the last 10 years, we have been cutting spending on every social service program while at the same time increasing military. We spend more money on military than anything else in our budget, over 20%. It is time for us to look at what we really need.)
There you go congress, you have less than five days to fix the problem very simply and painless. You need to do what needs to be done. You need to stop cutting and start to increase revenue or else our country goes nowhere!
So I am on Google+. If you do that sort of thing, you may read or add me to your circles at:https://plus.google.com/115274616405222338538/posts
I am still very unsure about this whole G+ thing. I am kind of overwhelmed by all the circles and new people. Mostly I have a problem with it because it is so much like Facebook. I hate Facebook.
One of the reasons I do not like G+ is that it truncates your message. This is better than Twitter that limits you to 150 characters. G+ allows you type as much as you want, BUT cuts your post mid-sentence with "expand this post" in light blue. I realize people do not really like long text posts, but in LiveJournal you at least have control and when and what to hide behind a cut (and on LJ, you cut is highlighted in parenthesis and an underlined hotlink with the choice of your text for the link). You have no control in G+ of how you can present your text and most people will scroll past your entry without clicking or even seeing the "expand this post" link.
Another reason why I do not like G+ is because it resizes your image to a default size for all images. You cannot resize it to what size you want people to view it. If people want to see the full sized image they have to click on it. You cannot place the image with the text, but it will place it below it. If you have multiple images, it will only highlight the first one and have small thumbnails of the remaining images.
There is no way you can customize how the page looks in G+. It looks you are stuck with a plain white template. I have no way to control how people view my journal and my link to my website is only on my "about" page.
G+ does NOT have communities or allow you to read your RSS feeds. I have found a lot of cool stuff that people have posted in communities that I never would have found otherwise because they were not on my friends list. Google allows people to repost people posts, but after reading the same entry ten times, it gets old fast. Google does have its Google Reader ... but really why go to two websites when you can have it in one place?
G+ is a major time drain. You can waste a whole day just reading people entries, updating your circles, looking a shared posts and recommendations, adding new people ... and not get anything else done at all. I really do not have time to waste on keeping up with everything on G+.
LiveJournal is my home. While a lot of people have added me on G+, but it does not seem a lot of people are actually reading my posts. More people read and respond to me here on LJ. I might still post at G+ if I have something important enough, but I think I am sticking with LJ.
I heard this story online ...
As Income Gap Balloons, Is It Holding Back Growth?To read or listen to the whole story, go to
by NPR STAFF
July 10, 2011
Members of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors tend to speak cautiously: Their words can move markets. Yet last month, Fed governor Sarah Bloom Raskin was remarkably candid about the growing gap between America's rich and poor. "This inequality is destabilizing and undermines the ability of the economy to grow sustainably and efficiently," she said. Income inequality, she continued, "is "anathema to the social progress that is part and parcel of such growth."
The income gap in the United States has ballooned: It's wider than any time since 1928, in the days before the stock market crash triggered the Great Depression. The numbers are startling: Top CEO salaries were up 23 percent last year, according to the New York Times; the average worker's pay was up only .5 percent. Meanwhile, the top 0.1 percent of American earners now take in more than 10 percent of the nation's collective income. That puts the U.S. in the same inequality ballpark as developing countries like Cameroon and Ivory Coast. This degree of income inequality has produced plenty of outrage — most of it about the moral implications of the gap.
But is income inequality putting the brakes on the stalling economy? And how did the gap between the wealthy and the middle class get so big?
One of the analysts made a graph that showed that the number of bank failures directly related to the income gap. The larger the income gap, the more banks fail.