I’ve been watching “America: The Story of Us,” a twelve part mini-series on the History Channel, and it is nothing short of amazing.  I’m constantly overwhelmed at the fact that I had the incredible fortune to be born in this great country.  I’ve only finished the Westward expansion section (just after the Civil War), and it is incredibly inspirational to watch what the early Americans went through and came out stronger for it. 

A few months ago, I saw another History Channel documentary on Andrew Jackson, and it was said that, at his death, one of the servants asked “Do you think General Jackson has gone to Heaven?” and another responded “If General Jackson wants to go to Heaven, I don’t know who is going to stop him.”  This was the story of early Americans: no one, not the vastly more powerful British army, not the harsh plains, not even division, would get in their way.  I hope that we still have some of that spirit. 

One complaint: for some reason, the marathon I caught skipped straight from “WWII” to “Millenium.”  I’ve been trying to find it online or on demand, but can’t.  Other than buying the DVD, does anyone know a source for the episodes covering the time between? 

Related: Andrea Buginsky agrees with me.

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OMG! An Attractive Woman!!

That’s a pretty accurate summary of Troy Patterson’s (Slate’s TV writer) “review” of Megyn Kelly’s new FoxNews midday show. 

First of all, it’s a mid-day show.  Which means that we’re not supposed to care about it.  Which he explains, but never provides any explanation (other than the obvious pointed out above) that he (or his readers) should care about it. 

The program itself is not anything special, nor does it need to be. As a midday show, its sole purpose is to keep a stream of information—meaningless and otherwise—flowing at a decent pace. As a Fox News offering, it just needs to throw out some red-state red meat, U.S. commercial grade or higher, every other block.

While he does throw in a few notes about her being an “up and coming” star (although she’s been a FoxNews regular for years, so I’m not sure what that’s all about), it’s pretty clear that his only reason for bringing her show to our attention is so that he can write stuff like this:

Megyn’s Manhattan studio offers a view of Sixth Avenue by way of a video screen and of her legs by way of a clear plastic desk. The desk is positioned atop a map of the 48 contiguous states such that Kansas City would seem to have a good view up her skirt. If it is less than gallant to make such an observation, it is more than fair to believe that Kelly would be OK with that.

My understanding of the concept of “post-feminist,” which Mr. Patterson insists that her show demonstrates, is that a woman can be a woman, including being attractive and feminine, and not have that limit her from being intellectual and reliable. Mr. Patterson’s understanding appears to be “she asked for it by wearing that skirt.”

Is Cracking Eggs Too Hard for You?

Well, have no fear, here comes the E-Z Cracker!  It cracks the eggs for you!  And, by dirtying another weird contraption which is probably a major pain to wash, you won’t risk getting stuff on your counter that might need to be wiped up!  And it had a scoop that catches the yolk to separate the eggs for you! 

And I am not making this up!  Although someone might be just making this up to mess with me!

Why can’t we just say it?

I’ve had an article published at NewsBlaze.  Here’s an excerpt:

I must confess that one of my guilty pleasures is the often outrageous FX show Nip/Tuck.  Last night I was catching up on my pre-holiday DVR-ing, and was rather intrigued by the last episode of the season’s handling of a sensitive topic.  One of the (many) over-sexed characters found herself pregnant, and the father, with whom she is quite enamoured, insisted that he would not stick around if she kept it.  After a great deal of garment renting, she, well, . . . she opted out.  She made her choice.  She had it taken care of. 

At the, well, “place,” she called another character to pick her up.  They discussed “it,” and it was revealed that the other character had been “through it” before.  Finally, after she had had “it” done, the other character finally manged to say what had occurred to the father.  Both this character and the father were doctors; even so, she prefaced it with a “you know” and a trail off before she could finally bring herself to say the word: “abortion.

Please visit NewsBlaze to check out the rest of this article, and let me know what you think.

How about a big scoop of mind your own effing business?

Though I’m loath to risk giving her more traffic than she is obviously worth, I just couldn’t resist commenting on the charmingly titled “Letter to Michelle Dugger, from her Vagina,” written by mommyblogger and general all around busybody “Christine” at Momversation, brought to my attention by Stacy McCain.  Let’s take a peek:

Hi, it’s Francine… your vagina.

Christine, seriously?  Step back and take a look at yourself right there.  You just NAMED another woman’s VAGINA.

It seems sort of silly to introduce myself since we are so close.  Or at least I thought we were, but then I had to go and read on the Internet that you are having yet another kid.  That’s right, I read the Internet.  I have to do something when you’re breastfeeding 42 kids.

So, I think this shows how much, er, Francine, represents Michelle Dugger’s actual vagina.  Or how much Christine understands about decent husband and wife relationships.  In case you’re slow on the uptake, here’s a hint: 19 kids = Ol’ Frannie’s probably not bored and looking for other ways to pass the time, if you know what I’m saying. 

OK, that was a little harsh.  But I’m a tad upset.  I mean, 19 kids?  19?!  It seems like every time I finish pushing out one kid, another is lined up.  Is your uterus a baseball dugout?

Let me get real with you here, Michelle.  There’s simply no way you can give each of those kids the personal attention he needs.  You’re too busy making and popping out kids to pay attention to the ones who aren’t currently latching.

First off, repeating a number over and over again- not really a cognizant argument. 

Second, maybe we need to rethink the amount of personal attention that a child needs.  Hovering over a child and ensuring that nothing bad ever happens in his/her life ever- not good parenting. 

And using your older children as surrogate parents is a recipe for immature behavior down the road.  You’re robbing them of their childhoods by making them mini mommies and daddies.

Christine’s objection: Kid’s shouldn’t have responsibilities!  It’s not as if they have to become adults someday and do these things for themselves.  

And what about me?!  Do you know that people on the Web call me a clown car?  A clown car, for pete’s sake!  I’ve become a laughingstock because of your addiction to pregnancy!

Please, Michelle, I beg of you; stop having babies.  I know it’s tempting to go to 20, but maybe you should just focus on the kids you already have.  Mmmmkay?

By the way, while I have your attention, I think it’s time for a new hair style.  You look like a member of Mr. Big

OK, remember above, where Christine just repeated a number over and over again and called it an argument?  I take back my criticisms of that one.  At least then, she wasn’t expecting success by using the “they’re all gonna laugh at you” argument on a 42-year-old adult woman who wears a long skirt everyday and has a husband named Jim Bob, and is apparently OK with her life!  Oh, and attacking the woman’s hair style, classy!

Anyway, I was the oldest of 4,which is not a particularly large family, but big by modern standards.  I cherished the independence (to Christine, that would be lack of personal attention) I got in being allowed to pursue my own interests rather than live out my parents’ lost desires.  I had to see that my homework was done, that I did well in school and signed up for the extracurriculars that I wanted- and I am a better person for it! 

I’m not generally a fan of the documentary-style reality shows like the Duggers, but I’ve caught it a few times.  The kids are all remarkably well adjusted, mature, and humble.  I was struck by an episode I caught a couple of weeks ago where the kids played hockey- the girls were asked if it was a problem to play in the skirts, and they didn’t complain, or get embarrassed, or defensive, they laughed it off and shrugged that they had always done everything in skirts, so it wasn’t a problem.  The show gives no evidence that the kids are being ignored, or abandoned, or not properly taken care of.  In fact, most families could learn a lesson or two about living together from them. 

Now, would I have 19 kids?  No way!  In fact, I doubt that most people could handle it well.  But the Duggers do, and the world is better for it.  People like Christine need to mind their own business and look at their own lives rather than judging others for things of which they know nothing about.

Signs of the Apocalypse

Virtually every new show this summer has bombed.  But,

Among the better performers was Fox’s fat bachelor dating show “More to Love” (3.9 million, 1.8), NBC’s Heidi and Spencer-filled “I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here” (5.0 million, 1.9) and ABC’s literal blind dating series “Dating in the Dark” (5.1 million, 2.1).

Boy, oh boy.