November 11th, 2008

vacation

My Weekend in Washington, DC

So vickifelder and I took six teenagers to DC for the weekend: my daughters, her daughter, and a friend for each kid. We had a great time and did and saw a lot, particularly considering the fact that we were there less than 48 hours!
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* Family of Origin story set in the Smithsonian Natural History Museum: I went to DC for the first time on a family trip when I was nine years old. There were five of us kids at the time, and my brother Joel (age 10) and I planned the whole trip (except for the hotel and the driving route to and from our home - we did all transportation routes within DC and chose all activities, sights, etc) as an educational exercise. We spent a lot of time in the Smithsonian museums.

We were all in the Hall of Minerals when my parents noticed that my sister Kayo (age 5) was holding a small rock that looked suspiciously like one of the large rocks on display on a pedestal. They did the parental interrogation bit ("Where did you get the rock?" "I found it" "No, really. Where did you get the rock?" "I found it." "You'd better tell me the truth." "I found it.") but she didn't crack. They weren't sure they believed her, but thought it best to just give up at that point.

Only my brother Hart (age 7) kept pestering her:
"Let me see your rock."
"No! It's mine."
"Just for a minute."
"No! It's mine."
"Come on. Let me see your rock."
"No! It's mine."

Finally she got so frustrated that, in that amazingly loud and clear voice that small children use only when saying something you wish were not overheard, she said, "Oh go chip your own!"

We left quickly and after that whenever you caught someone lying in my family you said, "Oh go chip your own!"
Jews for Obama

Still Happy About the Election

So, in spite of the sad news on Prop 8 and related measures, I'm still feeling so good about this election one week later. Some new reasons since my last update on this topic:

- All the executive orders that can be changed right away (and I hope will). We might really have the end of US-sponsored torture, as I mentioned in my last post. But, beyond that, the end of the anti-reproductive rights and generally anti-science measures of the current administration are a consummation devoutly to be wished.

- Al Franken apparently still has a chance.

- A poll today showed that 70% of the American public thinks Obama can handle the financial crisis. That includes the vast majority of Democrats and Independents and 44% of registered Republicans. It has been a long time since we've had a President Elect with that kind of backing on a major issue.

- More generally, I think there is such overwhelming good will among the vast majority of Americans, even those who did not vote for him. I think people are just thrilled that Americans were able to vote largely based on competence and temperament and that race, although certainly not irrelevant, did not prove an insurmountable barrier. Which is not to say that there aren't disgruntled people or mean-spirited remarks being made, but I've been so pleased by how happy even many voices on the right seem to be, almost in spite of themselves.

- They seem like such a nice family! And it will be so fun to have little kids in the White House again.