Friday, June 05, 2009

I don't like you, but I love you

Ok, I don't love Carlos Zambrano either. He's a hot head whose impulse control is as bad as his control of the strike zone is good. But even though I believe he's a little lacking as a human being, he's a talented baseball player and tonight he won his 100th game, and got a home run, to boot.

So I may not like you or love you, but tonight, Carlos Zambrano, this old Cub fan appreciates you.

Still not used to it

Our office closes early on Fridays in summer. I used the extra time this afternoon to do my grocery shopping. On the way home, I saw that a local bakery is shuttered, with a sign in the window thanking the community for letting them serve us for more than 15 years.

Just last weekend I noticed three other stores had closed.

This is in addition to my former boss, who has been unemployed for more than six months now, and is worried about medical insurance. And the friend who has an advanced degree, an impressive resume and blue-chip references and still has been pounding the payment since March.

Oh yeah, and then there's me. I'm still worried about my own job security. After all, I'm in advertising in a tough economy, so joblessness just naturally hangs over my head like the Sword of Damocles.

So it's with me all the time -- this bad economy. Nationally unemployment is at 9.4%. Here in Cook County it's a little higher. Even though these are sad and sobering thoughts for a sunny Friday afternoon, I'm glad they haunt me. I'm glad that my grocery bag contained a box of Pasta Roni (fettucine alreado flavor) for the neighborhood food pantry.

As Bruce Springsteen likes to remind us, "In the end, nobody wins unless everybody wins." Every plant that closes and every little bakery that goes out of business means unemployment and no insurance and lots of worry and heartbreak for someone who is just like me. Next time it could be me, and I'd appreciate it if someone out there hurt a little bit for me, too.

Borrowed from Mo

You can find her at Inside Mo's Mind.

This can be a quick one. Don’t take too long to think about it. Fifteen books you’ve read that will always stick with you. First fifteen you can recall in no more than 15 minutes.”

1) The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

2) Charlotte's Web by E. B. White

3) In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

4) JFK: Reckless Youth by Nigel Hamilton

5) To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

6) The Princess Bride by William Goldman

7) Saving Graces by Elizabeth Edwards

8) Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

9) Personal Injuries by Scott Turow

10) Pentimento by Lilliam Hellman

11) A Short Season by Jeannie Morris

12) Bang the Drum Slowly by Mark Harris

13) The Diary of Anne Frank

14) House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubus

15) Oxygen by Carol Cassella

If you play along, let me know so I can see which books you chose.

I know what her public reaction would be

Without breaking her stride, she'd simply say, "No comment." Or maybe no one would have the cajones to ask her about this to her face. After all, the paparazzi who swarmed her only ever got photos, never answers. (WWJD -- What Would Jackie Do? -- is a game I play often because I remain in awe of her strength, composure, and ability to stylishly rise above even the worst situations.)

PORTLAND, Ore. — Police in Oregon say they’ve found graphic child pornography at the home of the half-brother to the late Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.

The search at the Ashland home of 62-year-old James Auchincloss occurred in October, according to the Ashland Daily Tidings, which first reported the story. No charges have been filed.

Calls by The Associated Press to Auchincloss were not returned.

The newspaper said Auchincloss, who has lived in Ashland since 1995 and serves on the board of Oregon Stage Works, declined to comment on what police found at his home, saying that it was “a matter for the courts.”