The Talking Dog

September 23, 2019, Better late than never

I am five days late in noting what is now the 18th anniversary of this blog. At this point, it is safe to say I am keeping it up as much out of habit as anything else, what with the more or less once a month posting pattern ever since my "friend" Donald J. Putin began kicking ass and taking names on Twitter.

One feature of this blog has been my occasional reporting on my efforts at distance running. At 56 years old, it is likely that my fastest days (which were never fast) are well behind me. As such, I look for other things, like quirky goals of various kinds-- 50 states, 7 continents, 100 marathons, whatever. Hence, yesterday I completed my 56th marathon in this, the year I am still 56 years old, at the Adirondack Marathon in Schroon Lake in upstate New York. Regular readers are vaguely familiar with "my usual range" and this was on the slow side, but "in the range." I realize significant time improvements will require significant weight loss, which I find difficult to do with a full-time job. But hope springs eternal. I will just say that this race took particular focus, as the first 10 or 11 miles were virtually all uphill, and at times, extremely steep at that. So after the legs and lungs were destroyed, I also had to contend with "the sweep bus"-- a vehicle customarily behind the last runner-- following most of the way as runner after runner behind dropped out, leaving me to be the last runner (presumably not time-wise in the ultimate standings as quite a few started early).

That said, while my first and still fastest was done at age 19 in North Carolina, in 2001 at the age of 38 I began running marathons as an adult. Later that year, I began this blog, a week after 9-11 as it turned out. Over the years, I have kept up both activities, with whatever sense of accomplishment comes with each. The marathons alone total in excess of 1,400 miles (I have run many other races, both shorter and longer, but never stopped to add them up), and I am sure I am well over 1400 posts to this blog in its current Movable Type form.

Guantanamo Bay has been open since the beginning of 2002. My college classmate Barack Obama became a two-term President of the United States, only to be replaced by a media-created circus clown. The USA has been "at war" since all but about a month of the existence of this blog (and that first month was the immediate aftermath of September 11th). Lots of personal stuff; TD Dad passed away around four years ago; the rest of TD Familia is carrying on, albeit 18 years later (including the Loquacious Pup who, adding 18 to her age at the time we started this... is now 19).

Mostly, I saw a world in crisis at the start of this project in the aftermath of 9-11 fail to extricate it from that crisis. We can add climate change to all the other problems of the world; I see no cause for optimism, as there seems to be a catastrophic failure of imagination, that the overall system that isn't making anyone happier (let alone happy) is going to end up killing all of us so that a few rich people can hold on to extraordinary privilege does seem... catastrophic.

OTOH, in Jewish lore, the number 18 Is an alpha-numeric Hebrew code spelling "Chai" (the Jewish or Scots "Ch" rather than the English as in chimney); Chai of course means life-- a lucky number often used as a multiple for cash gift giving. Because of a 2012 cancellation (climate change again) in a few weeks I will run my 18th NYC Marathon, an active streak that puts me in the top 200 in that category for that event. So... there is always a basis for hope. Somehow. Young people are generally not assholes, unlike many old (especially white) people.

So, at the end of the day, we'll just keep on keeping on. "Donald J. Putin on American Exceptionalism" should be coming out in October-- perhaps not as early as I would have hoped, but I expect it too to come to fruition while I am still 56.

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September 11, 2019, Happy 9-11

Ordinarily I love to rant on this date, and would have done so earlier in the day. My earlier technical problems (a firewall at my IP address) have been helpfully resolved by my hosting company, and so we are back! Boo ya!

I have My friend Donald J. Putin has a lengthy diatribe over on twitter, which is lengthy by twitter standards but not by those of this blog.

Bottom line, it has been 18 years since 9-11. The damned World Trade Center twin towers were only open for 28 years. And yet, once the next ten years come and go, I predict that we will still go through the motions of a public ceremony devoted to private mourning as a national tragedy that led to insanely expensive (and end-of-American-empire inducing) wars that, in the end, have only made us less safe in every way. 18 years since the morning I got to watch the events from a ringside seat a block north, and then walked home through the surreal lower Manhattan environment and over the Manhattan bridge. Loquacious Pup wasn't even two. BTW, the most obvious manifestation of those events, a forever prison at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba, is still up and running despite holding only 40 prisoners, and get this, the trial of the alleged 9-11 perps is scheduled for January of 2021. Of course it will proceed as scheduled. HA!

I don't know what else to say, so let me make it easy: the terrorists won. We deliberately killed ourselves. Any dispute as to that was eliminated with the election of Malicious Circus Clown and presumptive Russian intel asset Donald J. Trump as President of the United States simply out of massive personal pique and media malpractice in deliberately relying on stolen Russian information (stolen from DNC email servers) but not attributing them to stolen email servers, while giving said presumptive Russian asset a complete and total pass for his lifetime of personal corruption and incompetence. Bi-partisan advancement of neo-liberalism so that elite financial professionals profited at the expense of the lifeblood of everyone else on Earth has finally caught up to everyone (at least 4 out of 5 Americans living paycheck to paycheck), and enough Americans said "fuck it," even if that meant a known clown and probable traitor.

Well then.

Much of the current terminal state of the American Empire is the subject of Donald J,. Putin on American Exceptionalism: It's not you, It's just America being America, which should be available early next month (I hope). (Wait, WUT? Did you just use the sanctity of 9-11 to advertise yourself?)

Alrighty then. As we often do, we turn it over to the Cheneys.

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