A Match Made In California, and Other Ephemera

I’m sure that somewhere, there must be a personals section of some publication which starts out with an ad for “middle-aged, pudgy, balding man with good sense of humor and strong sex drive seeking “real woman with curves, PhD, and black belt for good times,” and halfway down the page shows another ad for “real woman with curves, PhD, and black belt” seeking “middle-aged, pudgy, balding man with good sense of humor and strong sex drive for good times.” It probably happens fairly often with slightly less precise duplication. So was I the only person noticing the other day, when NPR broadcast at the beginning of ATC a piece on the dire finances of the California state government, which is cutting all sorts of essential services for lack of funds, and maybe 20 minutes later, another piece on a legislative proposal in the same state to decriminalize recreational use of marijuana by adults and permit local governments to regulate and tax it? This would greatly alleviate the financial mess in the Golden State by simultaneously reducing expenditures on police, courts, and prisons while providing a new source of revenue. Duh!!

And then there’s the likely new prime minister of Iraq, Allad Allawi (sp?) who is routinely referred to in the news as a “secular Shi’ite.” My Jewish affiliations make it easy for me to recognize this locution—it identifies the politician in terms of the mosque at which he does not pray. Reminds me of the want ad allegedly posted in a Belfast paper twenty-odd years ago, which specified that the job was to be filled by “Protestant—need not be Christian.” Now that we in this country are seeing a lot of “cultural Catholics,” we need to get used to this stuff. John Steinbeck, in “Pepin the Great,” depicted a French Chamber of Deputies in which one of the major parties was the “Christian Atheists.” It’s only a matter of time.

And then there’s the current government of Burma, which is asking the world to allow it to make “a gentle transition to democracy.” Hard to know how to take that.

Red Emma

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