Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Great lines from today's speech

Here are my favorite lines from Obama's Inaugural Address (taken from the transcript, found here):

On the petty differences, name-calling and focus on the inconsequential:

We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things.

On American exceptionalism:

In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned.

On the trade deficit and need to re-focus on American productivity and potential:

Our minds are no less inventive, our goods & services no less needed....our capacity remains undiminished.

On the cynicism toward government and critics of "dreaming big":

What the cynics fail to understand is that the round has shifted beneath them.

On the false dichotomy of the size of government and partisan quibbles:

The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works.

On the false dichotomy that we must reject our Constitution in the name of domestic safety, and that we must turn our backs of leading by example and instead lead by force:

We reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals.

And my favority part....a dig at American exceptionalism, or as I like to call it "American Extremism":

Power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please...our power grows through its prudent use....the justness of our cause...the force of our example...humility & restraint.

Jeffrey Toobin just said on CNN that there weren't any memorable lines from the speech. Obviously, I disagree, and I hope I'm doing my part to memorialize them here.

Everyday People

This is America. Wow.

Wish I was there, but happy nonetheless.

(photo from HuffPo...go there and click an ad or something)

I, Too, Sing America

I, Too, Sing America
by Langston Hughes

I, too, sing America.

I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well,
And grow strong.

I'll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody'll dare
Say to me,
"Eat in the kitchen,"

They'll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed--

I, too, am America.

(h/t Andrew Sullivan for reminding me of this one)

Soundtrack for our Moment

Today's going to be a great day.

At the moment I'm doubting my ability to write coherent paragraphs, so I thought I'd just share a quote and some videos. You can let them be your soundtrack for the morning.

"The greatness of America lies not in being more enlightened than any other nation, but rather in her ability to repair her faults," - Alexis de Tocqueville.

The Beatles "Revolution"

We all want to change the world.
You know it's gonna be alright...

Joy Denalane feat. Lupe Fiasco "Change"

Joy Denalane feat. Lupe Fiasco - Change from Nesola on Vimeo.

We'll overcome the things they do.
With each one teach one cause we're only as fast as the last one stragglin'.

Donovan "The War Drags On"

They're just there to try and make the people free,
But the way that they're doing it, it don't seem like that to me.

Arcade Fire "Rebellion (Lies)"

Been living in fear....Scare your sons, Scare your daughters

Common "A Dream"

Hate has no color or age, flip the page,
Now my rage became freedom,
Writin' dreams in the dark, they far but I can see 'em,
I believe in Heaven more than Hell,
Blessings more than jail,
In the ghetto let love prevail,
With a story to tell, my eyes see the glory and well,
The world waitin' for me to yell "I Have a Dream"

The Decemberists "Sons & Daughters"

Take up your arms, sons & daughters

Bruce Springsteen "The Rising"

A dream of life comes to me.
Come on up, feel the rising.

Marvin Gaye/Tami Terrell "Ain't No Mountain High Enough"

We made it to this mountaintop.

Arrested Development "People Everyday"

I am everyday people.

U2 - "Pride"

In the name of love.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Update on The Offer

Well, I'll be watching the Inauguration from home tomorrow. I'm not in DC.

As I feared, my traveling companion was not able to make the trip. I've been bogged down at work, as well, so I couldn't take the additional days off to make the trek (Monday & Wednesday).

I knew I would be pretty worthless at the office tomorrow (I can weep at the drop of the phrase "all-inclusive" the past few days....I know I'm a total dork.), so I'm working from home. I'll probably spend most of the day online & in front of the tube. Go America!!!

I'll be a lot warmer that way, anyway.

Catch me on Facebook or on Twitter, if it doesn't hit capacity (which it probably will).

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Offer

My father-in-law called at 9:30 this morning to see if Tyler and/or I would like to go to the Presidential Inauguration. Supposedly, he has a hotel room reserved.

Tyler said he would stay home, work, and take care of the dog; but he thinks that I should go.

Initially, I was unsure....unsure if I would be able to see/hear anything, unsure if I would be comfortable sharing my space on the Mall with 5 million of my closest (literally) friends, unsure if I wanted to spend 3 days with my slightly crazy father-in-law. However, I realized that:

  1. The historic nature of the event trumps all.
  2. I'll be able to see and hear so much, regardless of whether or not I see the actual swearing in or parade.
  3. Traveling with my crazy father-in-law might cause me to do things I ordinarily would be too scared to do. Tyler usually succumbs to my bowing out of things, due to fear. Tyler's dad will: embarrass me fully, make me anxious constantly, but probably help me experience things more fully in doing so.

Now that I've decided I want to go, I hope it actually happens. More updates as I get concrete information.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

On second thought

After watching the BCS "championship" game on Thursday night between Florida and Oklahoma, I could not help but be swayed by the ever-present praise of Florida quarterback Tim Tebow.

Now, I have stated previously (on Facebook and other such outlets) that "I don't care about Tim Tebow. I really don't. Sorry." So you might think that the announcers of Thursday's game -- and their obvious, undying love for Tebow -- would have grated on my nerves (to the Nth degree). You might think that I would have been bothered by their neglect to lavish much/any praise on the "other quarterback" in the game, one Heisman-winning QB at that, Sam Bradford. But no. Au contraire, mi amie. I took it all in. Every single second of it. And I learned from it.

OMG, Did you know he was a Heisman winner, too? Who knew? OMG, Did you know that he's considering leaving Florida before his senior year to enter the NFL draft? Who knew? Did you know that he's a "different kind of quarterback" and could be drafted not as a QB (unless it's a back-up QB by a team that heavily utilizes the Wildcat offense...say Miami, e.g.) but maybe as a fullback, tailback or the like? WHO KNEW???? It's not like any sports show has mentioned that lately.

Or maybe, just maybe, you did not know about his mission trips to Panama and the Phillipines, or his time living in a leper colony. Did you know that "there are actually hundreds of children in that Phillipino village named after [Tebow]"????* I mean, seriously.....WHO KNEW?
* Actual quote.

So.......after much soul-searching, I hereby walk back my original statements proclaiming my apathy toward the Good Son Tebow. In fact, here are the words I wrote the day after the game to my husband in response to an emailed picture of Brother Tebow....further evidence of my epiphany:

I'm going to print this photo, cut out Gabe's face, insert mine, frame it and hang it on my office wall. Underneath it, I'm going to use calligraphy and write out John 3:16 followed by Tebow's name. I will also pledge, right now, to name my first born son -- OR DAUGHTER -- "Tim Tebow Smith" in honor of this great day.

I am also starting my letter to Arthur Blank, telling him that I believe the lord baby Jesus just told me that the Falcons MUST draft Tim Tebow in April. Then, I will say Blank & Dimitroff must promptly petition the NFL for permission to reduce our official playing roster number from 53 to 46 to allow Tim Tebow to play the new "Every Back" position -- replacing 2 running backs, 2 full backs, 2 tight ends and 1 offensive lineman. I will preface this by saying it's a smart business move in that it helps with our salary cap. Why pay 7 people when you can pay 1 superhuman? Then we can afford some stellar linebackers and cornerbacks. Well, maybe Tim can play those positions as well. What am I saying? Of COURSE he can.

Like the scripture reference to John 3:16 that Brother Tebow paints on his under-eye patches -- "For God so loved the world, He gave us his only begotten Son" -- I, too, realize the gift that God has given us in this remarkable football player. And I could have listened to the commentators go on about him...all. Night. Long.

PS....if you think I'm harsh on Tebow. You should have heard me rant about Mitt Romney. I'm a very bad person.