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At least they'll have a story to tell

There is really no way to say it. We're the worst parents ever. We have officially crossed the line from ordinary failure to the truly terrible. What is it that we could do that was so horrid? We opened Christmas presents in the evening.... of Christmas Day. I weep just thinking about it. How could we reach such a low point?

Well, my wife had to work. I'd like to say there was something more to it but that is really it. She had to work and no one in this family outside of myself was willing to get up at 6am to open presents. I suppose we could have opened them without her but I am not sure we despise mommy enough for that.

My poor daughter suffered most of all. If you hear her tell it the progress of time that day slowed to a crawl that would impress even the torpid of Sloths. (Yes, I managed to work torpid into a sentence. I am going to consider that a victory of some sort or another. ) If she didn't ask every half hour for the entire day than I would be surprised.

My son was a bit more tolerant. I suspect he asked when mommy was going to be home no more than a dozen times or so. A relative trifle compared to the despondent form that was my daughter.

In the end everyone enjoyed opening presents and the related a great deal. Hopefully, that enjoyment will be enough to keep child services at bay.

Getting there

I read a lot of news. I subscribe to the local newspaper, watch television news, tons of stuff off the internet. In general, I have to be honest most of it is pretty depressing. In the end though, a lot of is not the kind of depressing that ruins your day. Violence for better or worse is something we can point to and say fairly clearly that this is bad regardless of the circumstances. Even a just war is something a rational person is not going to be interested in except under duress.

The things that affect me are the ones that fall under the category of "We'd never go that far." A few months ago there was a story that made the rounds about a new patent that was approved. It seems someone found an easier way to do genetic testing on those still inside the womb. They'd never go so far as to use it of course. It was left unasked why they'd bother researching and patenting something they'd never do.

Than there are our schools. The same halls hold some of the great educators we have ever had, some of the most truly worthless and examples of reasonable policies taken to the extreme. Fighting a problem? We just won't let students touch each other. This should fix all of our problems, why did we not think of this sooner? Gun violence is a problem too, so better safe than sorry. Free speech can also be a problem when you realize not everybody agrees with you. The articles are of course just picked at random from a little internet searching. If you worked you might be able to come up with a reasonable defense of the actions. However, you still have to explaining how charging a six year old with sexual harassment is going to do the child any good. In the end we need to remember that schools have children in them, not short adults.

I have spent a while trying to come up with something coherent to say about the federal government. I guess the best I can come up with is that pointing out that the NSA now has its own section at the Electronic Frontier Foundation and much of what they do is illegal to mention. Don't worry. I am sure they are not abusing their power and would never lie to us. After all, they can barely search their own email.

We've heard the phrase "Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely." Hopefully, we'll understand what it means before it is too late.

Art Theory

If you want to get a definition of art that is more useful than the dictionary definition you are going to have a challenge on your hands. In the end you are probably stuck accepting "I'll know it when I see it." and lots of disagreement. I'd like to throw out something as a bit of art, even if it might not be what you normally see.

Another classic from the archives

I have to admit cleaning up the detritus from a computer can be mind-numbingly boring. However, it is a necessary evil and does come with a few perks. The random link is one of my favorites. Here's another that still amuses me after so many years.