Grown Up Time with Jon Stewart

Jon Stewart Rally

Look at that. There we are. Blue Eyes and I. On our own. Out of Town. Doing grown-up things like eating at restaurants without kids meals, staying out late and sleeping in, having long, uninterrupted conversations and attending Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert’s Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear in Washington D.C.

Jon Stewart Rally

This photo maxes out my zoom lens so you can see, well, not the stage exactly, but the Jumbotron. The stage is beyond that. The Mythbusters guys led the rally in the wave, from the stage to the end of the crowd. We were far from the front, but we were 17 seconds into a 56 second wave.

My favorite parts of the rally:

To sum it up in a word, it was patriotic. It was about loving your country and how to love it well by being willing to listen and being kind.

There were lots of smart and/or funny signs at the rally, here are a few favorites:

  • (picture of Elephant and Donkey sitting down to tea) Can We Just HAVE tea and TALK?
  • I Might Disagree With You But I’ll Still Drink With You
  • Only the Sith Deal in Absolutes
  • This Sign is Heavy

I will pass along advice from Tony Bennett – Please vote on Tuesday.

I saw one more funny sign on the plane, not related to the rally. It was outside the airplane bathroom. I didn’t know airlines needed a sign for this and I’m not sure if the people who need the sign are the same people who obey signs, but here it is.

Jon Stewart Rally

That is all for my October-only-political-series-of-posts. In my alternate universe, where I have time for everything, I would have a second political blog. But in this universe, trying to write about politics and parenting is keeping me up too late at night, so it’s back to Sparkles and Buttercup for me. Stay tuned and I’ll tell you how the girls were dressed in their Halloween princess costumes when we went to a castle to find out if the Beast was there…

Why Liberals Make Me Nuts

I wrote a post recently, Jon Stewart and My Sister, that mentioned, somewhere in there, that conservatives and liberals both make me crazy.

My liberal friends might wonder why liberals make me crazy, so I thought I would write another political post or two, leading up to the Jon Stewart rally this Saturday.

Do you remember Say Anything, with John Cusak playing Lloyd Dobler who wanted to win the love of the more traditional and conservative Diane Court? Lloyd was having dinner with Diane and her parents and Lloyd give this passionate speech to Diane’s father…

I don’t want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don’t want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don’t want to do that.

As the unique story of one man, this is a fine speech, but some liberals make it a policy of sorts that should apply to everyone and that makes me nuts because while Lloyd Dobler is making this passionate speech, he is wearing pants.

Somebody had to make those pants. Someone had to buy the material, design the pattern and operate the sewing machine. Someone had to purchase the pants for the retail store and someone had to ring up the sale when Lloyd came in looking for pants.

There is honor in making things that people want, even if what they want is every day and routine. Our country has a huge random collection of the millions of things that people need and it has a huge random collection of the millions of things people can do and it is a beautiful thing when the two meet. That isn’t selling out, that is being a part of the interwoven fabric that keeps us all from running around naked. Some times I hear “corporations are evil” and “I’ll never work for The Man,” but that is like saying you don’t believe in rain. As long as we drive cars and use computers, corporations just ARE and sure, we can improve how they work, but it doesn’t make sense to me to make such broad generalizations or check-out all together.

Later this week , I’ll write about why conservatives make me nuts and be sure to check in tomorrow, when I write about two guys dressed up like over-processed chicken nuggets and corn-syrupy dipping sauce …

Udpate on Jon Stewart and My Sister

Thanks for all the comments and emails about my Jon Stewart and My Sister post last week. The post made me nervous. Somewhere in there I said that my friends and my family both make me nuts and there is nothing like making everyone mad all at the same time with one post. But they didn’t get mad. Just one commenter who is suspicious about why Jon Stewart changed his name. But that’s OK.

Here are a few follow-up thoughts…

I got several emails about last week’s Jon Stewart and My Sister post talking about political debates in the family. Grown adults with smart jobs and sweet families were still hurt by family debates, sometimes from when they were kids and other times from just last week.

Families are powerful. They have special access to sensitive buttons and hidden layers of emotions. Some times when you want to respond, you can feel like a kid again, stuck in your old roles and unable to find your grown up words.

But the idea that debate should be based in compassion instead of competition, at least some of the time, doesn’t solve any problems by itself. It is a micro view of politics instead of macro and it doesn’t deal with the big problems that need answers.

So maybe it doesn’t matter.

Or maybe it does.

Maybe if everyone had experiences with compassionate debate, in the space that has the most influence on us, maybe that would carry over into politics. Maybe it would change what we expect of politicians and maybe they would communicate with us differently.

Well, I’m just rambling on in dreamland now. Just an idea I wanted to share. Stay tuned for my next political post that explains in more detail to my friends why liberals make me nuts.