Before anybody gets their camo knickers in a twist, let me just say that I support the right of any individual or group to protest just about anything. I protested the Vietnam war and bad teachers for my kids. I protested racial inequality and I didn’t eat grapes for a year while supporting the United Farm Workers. I even have my name on a Federal injunction in support of a native-American speaker who had been banned on a campus in the northwest.
I did not, however, find it necessary to carry so much as a BB gun during any of those protests.
Nor did I forget to bring the snacks.
The Bundy brigade now occupying – if you can really call it that – a bird refuge in eastern Oregon, a bird refuge!, have turned out to be the goofiest bunch of yahoos to mount a revolution since Woody Allen in his very funny movie, “Bananas.” Remember when Woody had to get food for the troops, which he did at the nearest diner in the jungle – all those grilled cheese, tuna and BLT sandwiches and the wheelbarrows full of coleslaw? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=On7U-x_s_EE
It was the call for snacks that got me thinking about “Bananas.”
I mean, if you’re going to plan a revolution or even a protest with a tagline like “We’re going to be here for years,” and back it up by adding that this wasn’t a spur-of-the moment thing and that they’d been planning it for a while, wouldn’t you think somebody would have remembered the beer nuts and Cheetos?
Especially a gang that looks to be in the photos in the press largely a bunch of overweight and overage guys who’ve probably never gone more than a couple of bowling nights without their snacks.
If somebody hasn’t already bought the rights to this, I want dibs on writing the script for what could turn out to be the funniest “western” since Mel Brooks’ “Blazing Saddles.” I mean, these guys are 30 miles from the nearest 7-11 in the middle of winter. Did they think somebody would deliver?
And what kind of whiny-ass revolutionaries are they anyway who have to tweet for potato chips?
This protest has had fiasco written all over it from the beginning when the locals said they didn’t want any protest, they were doing fine, “Bundys, go home.” I can imagine some of the conversations among the protesters and they’re pretty hilarious.
Like everyone else, I do hope this little party can be ended with no violence. We’ve seen your guns, boys, and my goodness yes, they’re sooo big. But it’s time to put them away now and let Harney County get back to normal.
If you don’t, you’ll be sorry when the birdwatching crowd gets back to the refuge. Never get between a birder and his whooping crane! And you’re not going to like the headlines one bit: “Bundy-led Militia Routed by Audubon Society.”
I feel like Charlie Brown this morning as I bang my head against the wall and mutter “Good grief.”
If it isn’t Donald Trump running off at the mouth, it’s the Bundy boys leading a band of armed troublemakers who went to Oregon to protest the Feds because God told them to do it. It’s a real WTF moment.
And as a native-born, fifth-generation eastern Oregonian, I’m more than angry about it.
I have a little insight into the Bundy gang after spending a year in southern Utah where God tells a lot people to do things like this. One of Bundy’s leaders calls himself Capt. Moroni and therein lies a tale. Moroni, of course, is an important figure in Mormon history and you’ll find him atop many a Mormon building.
Utah and Nevada are filled with folks like Bundy who hate the U.S. government and fight it every chance they get. I was there when the Bundy stand-off took place just miles from where I was living in the spring of 2014. I keep asking myself why these people don’t just secede from the union they hate so much.
At any rate, the Bundy gang has ironically now come to “make a stand” for a couple of Oregon ranchers, the Hammonds, who do not want them to make such a stand and are willing to serve the prison terms set for them by the government for arson they committed on Federal lands. The Hammonds want nothing to do with the Bundy gang, but the Bundy gang will by God stand for them anyway, take over a federal building in a wildlife refuge and threaten to kill anybody who gets in the way because – well, because the Bundy gang leading this militia hoohah doesn’t have good sense. And they’re whiners.
The Bundy gang wants no law at all about use of federal lands which do not belong to them in the first place.
“God was not pleased” is the same excuse terrorists use to do whatever bad things they set out to do. My hope is the Bundy gang will all be arrested this time and sentenced to long prison terms for terrorism.
Bundy’s God might not be pleased about that, but sane people everywhere will be.
It’s New Year’s Eve, the night for celebrations and confetti and dancing and all that jazz.
I hope nobody’s out there waiting for my list of the ten best things of 2015 or the ten things to watch for in 2016 or the ten of anything at all.
Actually, 2015 has been an amazing year. A lot of good things. Some not so good. Some of it downright nuts.
I keep hearing Bob Dylan’s song in my head:
“People are crazy and times are strange
I’m locked in tight, I’m out of range
I used to care, but things have changed.”
2016 could turn out to be about the same. I fall back on Billie Holiday’s advice: “Pray for the future. Hope for the best.”
But you know what’s been happening as well as I do, so rather than dwell on anything serious, let me just wish you a Happy New Year, however you’re spending it and also say, “This is how we used to do it!” If you were there, you know just what I’m talkin’ about. If you were not, there’s still time!
Crank it up, boys… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZgdufzXvjqw
I find something melancholy about the middle of the day on Christmas. It’s that little hollow feeling between acts, so to speak, having wrapped up the Christmas Eve celebrations and unwrapped gifts Christmas morning but not yet into the last big event on the holiday schedule – the gathering of the relatives.
It doesn’t matter much what shape the holiday events take from year to year. I still feel this touch of melancholy about mid-day on Christmas.
Maybe it’s leftover from childhood when I’d opened the last present and still didn’t find that one thing I was secretly hoping for. So much for secrets.
Or maybe it’s something more recent when, as an adult, I’m painfully aware of what’s going on in the world and know that even the joy of Christmas can’t quite make everything better.
Or maybe it’s the letdown after any big push of activity to meet a deadline – opening night for a play, mailing a proposal at the last minute, just making it home before dark.
Or possibly this little melancholy entr’acte is meant to be a breathing space, a welcome respite as I remember what the holiday is about – Christmas – and at the same time, an opening back to my ordinary day-to-day life.
Tomorrow, the tree comes down – my tiny little palm tree that made me happy this year in San Diego. The ornaments and lights go back in the boxes. The bells come off the door. The furniture will be rearranged, and I’ll head into my next painting project.
I may hold Christmas in my heart all year, but the rest of my life is worth my attention, too.
I have to dash now to get ready for the big and welcome party with all the relatives…break is over – deep breath and way we go on one last happy rush of energy!
Cheers and Ciao and Blessings,
I always celebrate my personal New Year’s Day when the Winter Solstice arrives. I’ve done this for years because this is the day the darkness begins to leave us and the sky begins to stay light longer, even for seconds every afternoon.
For me – and for you, this is the ray of hope that can happen in the midst of the darkest nights even in the Maine woods where I took this photo. So light the candles, sing the songs, toast the possibilities ahead. Spring always comes.
Happy Winter Solstice!…Happy New Year!…Happy return of the light!
Celebrate, dear hearts. And pass it on.
We are a nation that memorializes famous people in film biographies the way Mormons memorialize fruit cocktail in lime jello.
Biographical, and occasionally autobiographical, movies are big business. Rumors start to spread the minute such a film is proposed. “Who will play…?”
It can only be a matter of time before there’s a Donald Trump movie although it will have to be approved by his entire legal staff before a quarter-inch of film is in the can, so to speak.
I’ve been pondering the question today. Who would play Donald Trump in such a venture?
The first actor who came to mind was William Shatner who sometimes seems to be the model for Trump, at least the Shatner who played the egomaniacal and sometimes unbalanced Denny Crane in “Boston Legal.”
The physical build would be about right – two guys who have become portly in their declining years. Portly is a great word that was once used to describe those leaders of industry who had put on more than a few pounds as if the pounds were an indicator of their wealth and status. You know, like the icon of the Monopoly game. (Does he have a name?) (A quick look at that ultimate source, Wikipedia tells me that he was once called Rich Uncle Pennybags but is now just Mr. Monopoly. Oh well.)
But I digress.
Despite a certain similarity between the two, a certain je ne sais quoi, I don’t think Shatner’s the one to play Trump. I think we’d need someone with a different kind of edge, somebody who could capture that “redneck in a suit” quality Trump so easily displays and which seems to be at the core of his appeal.
Charles Durning might have done it with a little padding. He did a great turn as the yahoo demagogue Pappy O’Daniel in “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” but sadly, Mr. Durning left us on Christmas Eve, 2012. RIP, Pappy.
It’s the neck that stumps me in trying to cast someone to play Trump. I’ve done a lot of theatre and I know make-up can take care of many problems like this, but Trump’s neck is a wonder to behold. I always have to giggle when Trump brags about how good-looking he still is. I want to ask that age-old question: “Have you looked at yourself in the mirror?”
John Candy could have been great. But like Charles Durning, Candy is playing at the Bijou in the Sky these days.
After a lot of thought, I’m going to go with John Goodman.
He’s a funny man a lot of the time, but he can also look like a guy who would want his crew to rough up a protester or who would tweet nasty comments in the middle of the night about everything and everybody, who would talk nonstop during an interview and brag wildly about himself, his gorgeous family, his money and, apparently his prostate judging from the news out today about how fantastically healthy he is. I hope we don’t have to hear any more about that.
Of course, John Goodman would just be playing a role. We can never be sure about Donald Trump. In the end, this is all just idle fun on a Monday afternoon, because I’m pretty sure the billboards for such a movie would read: Coming soon to a theatre near you! “The Donald Trump Story” starring – wait for it – Donald Trump.