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Chalco's Journal
Posted by Chalco in Parenting Group
Mon Feb 28th 2011, 01:07 PM
On a recent Sunday, a rare event happened. I witnessed my teenage daughter in a state of euphoria over something I'd done. Anyone who has had or who currently has a teenager knows how rare this phenomenon is. For the most part, they'd rather not be seen with their parents.

So when I set up the surprise, I did it with fear and trepidation. How would she react? My friend Phyllis said that my daughter would be totally embarrassed. "Good Luck!" she said.

My husband agreed. He said, "If you want to do it, go ahead, but just know that I want nothing to do with it." So I pondered and obsessed about whether to do it or not.

But, I kept remembering how delighted she was upon coming across the acapella contest on TV a couple of months ago. We watched it together which was a rare event in itself. The only program we ever watched together was Jon Stewart or perhaps an episode of Bones. Something about acapella captured her. We were glued to the TV together. "I want to be in an acapella group when I go to college," she said at the end of the contest.

I opened my email a couple of weeks ago and saw one from a member of my book group. Marilyn's email informed us that the acapella group she belonged to had a Valentine's Day offer. They would sing songs to the loved one of our choice for $50.00.

I immediately envisioned them singing a love song from me to my daughter. She's going to college in the fall and I've been having what I call preparatory grief. I go from extreme sadness to jubilation whenever I think of her: loss, then, pride, then, back to loss again and finally I realize that I must have done a good enough job at raising her if she has the wherewithal to go to college.

I called up the Capitol Accord Chorus to schedule a Valentine.

"Hi, this is Sandy. I'd like to schedule a Valentine song for my daughter."

"Ok, well, we usually do it for love relationships, but ok," she replied.

"What song do you recommend?" I asked.

"Hmmm, let's see, this is hard."

"Can you do 'Just the Way You Are' by Bruno Mars?"

"No, but that's a good one." Pause. "How about 'You've Got a Friend in Me?'"

"Perfect. Let's do it."

"Sunday at 5, right?"

"Right. Thanks, see you then."

As Sunday approached I nervously asked Nora to make sure she had no plans for Sunday. Her puzzled look was not comforting.

Sunday morning I reminded her that I had scheduled a surprise for 5 o'clock.

"So, what do I have to do?"

"Nothing. Just be here."

"What should I wear?"

"I don't want to answer any questions or you'll guess what's going on."

"Then, I'm not coming downstairs!"

"Ok, yes. Get dressed."


I thought 5 o'clock would never come. Every doubt and every possible scenario passed through my mind. Either she wouldn't come down, or she would come down and see how old the women were and look at me bored, or she would come down and the singing would be awful and we'd all feel uncomfortable.

The die was cast. There was no going back.

The dog started barking. They must be here. I ran to the front door. I heard my husband and daughter walking down the stairs. Marilyn, my friend from the book group, looked through the window in the door. I opened the door and gave Marilyn a hug. She and the other women trickled in. They were all over 50. I was not comforted.

I turned and saw Nora at the bottom of the stairs. The shy smile on her face gave me some hope. Four women in coats stood in our living room.

"Marilyn warned us about your house. She said there was so much to look at."

The women's eyes were darting about taking it all in. It was a little awkward.

Apprehensive, I led them into the dining room and toward the great room.

Marilyn said, "Where shall we put our coats?"

"Here...on the dining room table."

"Great." I headed for the great room.

"Where's Nora?" I couldn't see her. "Did she escape?" I wondered to myself.

"She's already in the room," Marilyn said.

I walked into the great room. The ladies quickly removed their coats and followed me.

"OK. We'll sit here and you guys stand here." I turned around to see 4 gorgeous women, in purple sequined flowing tops and rhinestone earrings and necklaces.

"Wow! You guys look like professionals!" exclaimed Paul.

"We are professionals," said Marilyn.

I sat down on the couch with Nora but avoided looking at her, my fear still palpable.

Linda said, "This song's for you, Nora, from your Mom."

They started to sing in acapella fashion with a beat and 4 different voices and it was Glee and the acapella contest right there in our great room. I finally had the nerve to turn and look at Nora. She was sitting tall on the couch with her arms moving with the beat and a smile to end all smiles on her face. I couldn't take my eyes off of her. She turned and smiled as she moved with the music.

"You've got troubles, well, I've got 'em, too. There isn't anything I wouldn't do for you." A tear slid down my face. I quickly brushed it aside but then another one came. I looked over at Nora. She looked as if she was in a beatific trance. I do not think I've ever seen her so happy. "But no one will ever love you the way I do. It's me and you and as the years go by, girl, our friendship will never die."

The women moved their arms, their hips and their heads bobbed and weaved. Tenor, bass, and soprano in harmony and my daughter smiling her ass off and as I wiped away tears on our last Valentine's day before she heads off to college in the Fall.

The song ended. Even before I had time to wonder what Nora would do she leapt from the couch. "Oh, my God! Thank you, so much! Oh, my God. This only happens in the movies!" She threw her arms around me "Thank you, Mommy, you're the best. I can't believe what just happened."

And so the Capitol Accord Chorus left and we resumed our lives with a memory that will bind us together forever.

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Posted by Chalco in General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009)
Fri May 09th 2008, 07:14 AM

On children

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On the economy

< />

On veterans

< />

On health

< />

On national security

< />

On civil and constitutional rights

< />

On women

< />

On election reform

< />

Obama's record? Prove it's better. Go ahead. Prove it. I dare you.
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Posted by Chalco in General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009)
Mon Apr 21st 2008, 05:09 PM
Self-preservation. Yes, it's that simple.

The history of women includes millenia after millenia of subjugation, mass killing, rape, and witch burning to name a view of the atrocities. Some of this mayhem continues today in our so-called advanced society: the persistent murder of pregnant women and rape, for example.

Male violence to wards women has been around for a long time. Archaeologist Marija Gimbutas discovered that civilization used to be matriarchal rather than patriarchal. Matriarchal societies tended to be egalitarian, not hierarchical. Power was shared. Around 3500 BC the shift from matriarchy to patriarchy started. Worship of the earth mother shifted to worship of the sky god. Men exerted power and took control.

The vitriol that men have historically had toward women comes from a deep seated place. They had centuries of being "controlled" by women. They took control and exacted revenge.

Vitriol is a signal that the unconscious is speaking.

Today we see women expressing vitriol toward the female presidential candidate. What is the female unconscious trying to say? What is the feminine unconscious reacting to?

Other countries have had female leaders, but not the United States, arguably the most powerful country. As we stand on the precipice of that possibility it is important to ask why the vitriol toward a more than qualified female candidate for president? The shift in the power structure is frightening. This fear turns into anger and gets projected onto the woman. It is women's own self-contempt that they project onto Hillary.

Rather than confront their own self-loathing and jealousy at Hillary for achieving what every-woman can, women are instead eating their own and supporting the male candidate in order to preserve the male hierarchy and their place in it. To look at Hillary is to look in the mirror at their own unrealized potential.
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Posted by Chalco in General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009)
Mon Apr 14th 2008, 06:01 AM
Because of people like you, Obamatons.

Let's see if this gets deleted. If so, we know what's going on.
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Posted by Chalco in General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009)
Sun Feb 10th 2008, 01:08 PM
The a...h... that infuriated me the most on this topic was I think Tucker who questioned how she dared to present herself as a victim when she has had all the advantages for gods sake she went to Wellesley, was a lawyer, married Bill, was First Lady, blah, blah, blah.

There is no doubt in my mind that along the way to all of her so-called advantages she was put down for being a woman, put down for not knowing her place, sexually harassed, given less pay than the men of equal rank, criticized for not being a stay at home mom, told there was no point in becoming a lawyer she was just going to get married and be a mom. Women were/are jealous of her for having a career, being successful, being a mom and an attorney, overcoming obstacles placed in front of her by the male dominated world.


Wouldn't it be better for the world if the president of the United States was able to use all of her faculties in order to make decisions. Wouldn't it be better for the world if the president of the United States before they went to war thought about the consequences, felt about the consequences and perhaps decided that the human cost was too great to pursue that particular problem solving technique and instead negotiated diplomatically. Huh? Don't ya think?

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Posted by Chalco in Editorials & Other Articles
Tue Oct 30th 2007, 07:54 AM
I will have to say that after only reading about 140 pages I now feel that I know the absolute truth.

Naomi Klein puts meat on the bones of what Greg Palast and John Perkins (Economic Hit Man) have written about the real reasons behind current events.

The book is not for the faint of heart, however, because even though I'm more cynical than most I will never be the same after reading this book. I wasn't sure I trusted before, now I'm afraid that I hate. It's not a comfortable feeling. But, I am a believer in the truth. And so, I accept the consequence of knowing.
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Posted by Chalco in General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010)
Fri Mar 09th 2007, 05:27 PM
Just got an email from John Ondrasik of Five for Fighting asking me and others to look at his new website. People can upload videos that exemplify the message of his song--"What kind of world do you want?"

It's gorgeous. I've just looked at 3 so far, but the one titled "Caring Kids of Cape Elizabeth" had me sobbing so hard I couldn't see. I guess because I'd just finished watching U.S. vs John Lennon. We can only hope that John Ondrasik is taking up where John Lennon left off.

Please...check this out

< /> Go to the middle of the page and click on Watch the Videos.
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Posted by Chalco in General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009)
Thu Feb 15th 2007, 01:31 PM
My husband gave me the Diary and Letters of Kaethe Kollwitz, a German artist, the other day. He thought I'd like it because I'm an artist as well. It is inspirational, I'd have to say, from an artist's point of view.

But her son, Peter died defending Germany in 1915. He was 19.

Her diary entry from March 19, 1918 reads in part:

"When someone dies because he has been sick--even if he is still young--the event is so utterly beyond one's powers that one must gradually become resigned to it. He is dead because it was not in his nature to live. But it is different in war. There was only one possibility, one point of view from which it could be justified: the free willing of it. And that in turn was possible only because there was the conviction that Germany was in the right and had the duty to defend herself. At the beginning it would have been wholly impossible for me to conceive of letting the boys go as parents must let their boys go now, without inwardly affirming it--letting them go simply to the slaughterhouse. That is what changes everything. The feeling that we were betrayed then, at the beginning. And perhaps Peter would still be living had it not been for this terrible betrayal. Peter and millions, many millions of other boys. All betrayed."

Then on October 1, 1918 she writes: "Germany is near the end. Wildly contradictory feelings. Germany is losing the war."

"What is going to happen now? Will the patriotic emotion flare up once more so powerfully that a last-ditch defense will start? ...I find in my self no agreement with it. Madness not to cut the war short if the game is up, not to save what still may be saved. The young men who are still alive in Germany must keep; otherwise the country will be absolutely impoverished. Therefore, not another day of war when it is clear that the war is lost."

When are we going to learn?

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Posted by Chalco in General Discussion (01/01/06 through 01/22/2007)
Mon Dec 18th 2006, 08:29 AM
This year has been a turning point in the use of the internet by individuals to influence events as opposed to corporations being in control. In light of the move by corporations through the FCC to get control of the internet this move by Time (which is owned by a corporation) should make our case at the FCC that WE need to remain in control of the internet and not corporations. I love it.
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Posted by Chalco in General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009)
Fri Nov 24th 2006, 05:08 PM
I have never sobbed so much. Everything since his death has been a sham. His death was the end of hope. My husband didn't want to go. He had read reviews that said it was amatueurish or worse. He thanked me for insisting he go. He sobbed with me. The crowd was silent at the end. No one could move. No one could talk. It was as if our world had shattered again. I could not talk for a long time I was so overcome with grief.

I wanted to see Bobby because Emelio Estevez said that there was nothing that had moved him more than seeing his father sobbing when Bobby died. It became his life's mission to make the movie. He invested everything in this project. His life, his emotion, his wallet, his soul. At one point he had writer's block for a year. His brother, Charlie, was dispatched to get him off his butt. Emelio said he didn't know what to do he was stuck. Charlie said, just get out of town, just go. Emelio got in his car and drove and ended up in a motel. He struck up a conversation with the receptionist who said that she had been in the hotel the night Bobby was killed. Emelio felt his meeting her was divine intervention. He put her character in the movie. She was Diane, the woman who married a young man so he didn't have to go to Vietnam.

Bobby's words at the end were so powerful and such an antithesis to the current situation we find ourselves in. It made me realize that when we are in shock as a nation the aggressive ones take over and because we are in shock we cannot imagine that they would do something that is harmful to us and to our nation, but they do. They take advantage of us.

I remember after 9/11 being in such shock that when Bush gave his "speech" about needing to invade Iraq in front of the White House Press Corps my mind was telling me that he would not suggest something vile. That could not be possible. He must be telling the truth. This is what my mind told me while another part of me said, but he is lying. I wanted to believe him. I didn't want to think that we were being tricked and used. But we were.

When Bobby died I was 20 years old. It was the end of hope. Since then we lost our will and are no longer a force of good.

We must revolt and we must do it now.

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Posted by Chalco in Editorials & Other Articles
Tue Sep 12th 2006, 12:49 PM
William Kristol of the Weekly Standard and Rich Lowry of the National Review wrote an OpEd for the WP which advocates sending in more troops so we can achieve success.

"Administration spokesmen have jettisoned talk of "staying the course" in Iraq in favor of "adapting to win." If those words are to have meaning, the administration can't simply stay the course on current troop levels. We need to adapt to win the battle of Baghdad. We need substantially more troops in Iraq. Sending them would be a courageous act of presidential leadership appropriate to the crisis we face."

More here < >

Here's my email to Customer Service at the Weekly Standard:

Dear Customer Service,

Please tell Mr. Kristol to send all of his relatives between the ages of 18 and 45 to Iraq. I'm sure that will help. And...let us know how it works out. You know, how many were killed, how many had their faces blown up, how many lost limbs.

Thank You.

Here's the automated response from Customer Service: Your customer service request has been received by The Weekly Standard. You should receive an email response in 2-3 business days

To send your own email go here: < >

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