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many things make a post

qotd, my poor knees

When [Chuck] Schumer flies, his first move is to empty the seat pocket in front of him. “I take out the magazine and the airsickness bag so I have an extra eighth of an inch,” he said in a phone interview. It’s a matter of some passion — when the presidents of three airlines visited Schumer’s office for discussion of a totally unrelated issue, he moved the coffee table so it was an inch from their knees. “I said: ‘O.K., now you know how it feels.’”

-- From Gail Collins' column in the NYT this week. While there are a few things I don't support Schumer on, this isn't one of 'em. Give 'em hell, Chuck.

many things make a post

Sometimes, life makes other plans.

It was quiet on the blog last week because I'd gone down to Florida to help my mother get through a simple procedure that turned into a much, much more complicated one. I'll likely write more about it later but it has been a little ... chaotic. Still, I'm home now to regroup and figure out the next steps. While I do that, I, of course, have some many things for you:

qotd, all the yes

"And democracy requires compromise, even when you are 100 percent right. This is hard to explain sometimes. You can be completely right, and you still are going to have to engage folks who disagree with you. If you think that the only way forward is to be as uncompromising as possible, you will feel good about yourself, you will enjoy a certain moral purity, but you’re not going to get what you want. And if you don’t get what you want long enough, you will eventually think the whole system is rigged. And that will lead to more cynicism, and less participation, and a downward spiral of more injustice and more anger and more despair. And that's never been the source of our progress. That's how we cheat ourselves of progress."

- From President Obama's commencement speech at Howard University. It is a masterwork. I will miss him.

shameless self-promotion, part 447 in a series

Fresh column at Another Mother Runner, in which I run the Pittsburgh Half Marathon.



Because I am not getting any younger, I decided now was the best time to run the only marathon I've ever wanted to run.* In order to make that happen (apart from all of the running, training, and ice baths, naturally), I'm running under the umbrella of Every Mother Counts, a charity that is dear to me. Did you know that every single day, globally, 800 women die in childbirth. Did you also know that 98 percent of these deaths could have been prevented pretty easily with decent care? Yeah. Me, either. Prompt medical care certainly saved me with baby #1. I can only imagine what would have happened had I not been privileged to live in a developed country. 

Please help me help all of those women who are becoming mothers under different circumstances by donating here

* Just think of all of the columns about training for a marathon that your donation will fund!

qotd, wisdom

"A consulting engineer for G.E., Charles Steinmetz was allowed to work on outside projects. Henry Ford once asked him to fix a generator. Steinmetz requested a pencil, a notepad and a cot. He worked for two days and nights listening to the machine and making intense calculations. On the third day he asked for a ladder, a measuring tape and a piece of chalk. He climbed the ladder, put an X on the machine and told the workers to lift the plate and remove 16 field coils at that spot. It worked. When Steinmetz presented Ford with a $10,000 bill, Ford respectfully asked for an itemization. It read: 'Making chalk mark on generator: $1. Knowing where to make the mark: $9,999.'"

-- From the Fall 2015 Plattsburgh Alumni Magazine