"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Sunday Salon. Sept. 13

My favorite photo of Ian and my Dad. It was taken in September 2018, just months before Dad died. Ian is turning one here and Dad is 90. Love!

Weather: Smokey. Rain is in the forecast for Tuesday. It will not come soon enough.

Family: Today is Ian's 3rd birthday. We will help celebrate the day of his birth with other family members and friends at a county park near their home. Keeping fingers crossed that the smoke doesn't necessitate a cancellation.


  • Currently reading
    • True Trump: An Honest Biography of Trump for Young Adults by Ross Rosenfeld. I agreed to read and review this book for the author. I wish I hadn't. Not because the book is bad, I just hate Trump so much I don't like reading about him for long stretches of time. (e-book, 26%)
  • Completed this week
    • The Next President: The Unexpected Beginnings and Unwritten Futures of America's Presidents by Kate Messner. A Children's book. It takes an interesting angle---right now there are maybe as many as eight people alive who will become president some day. (e-book)
    • Bird Box by Josh Malerman. A thriller of a post-apocalypse in the near future. Also a book club selection well out of our normal type of selection. (Audio) After I finished listening to it, we watched the movie of it starring Sandra Bullock.

Bad News: 

I know I don't usually spend any time here on this post highlighting the bad news of the week but my thoughts and feelings these days are quite negative. We are living in what smells like a camp fire with forest fires not far from our home causing the need for the evacuation of several friends and church members. Out of caution my sister, who lives in Oregon, evacuated from her home to stay with our mother several miles away. The fire that threatened her home did destroy several small communities on the McKenzie River and it is still raging. The whole west coast seems to be burning.

In addition the news out of Washington, DC was very discouraging this week: President Trump knew in January how contagious the coronavirus was and how it is spread through airborne transmission. Yet, he spent months and months saying it wasn't too bad and no worse than the flu. Soon our country will exceed 200,000 deaths from the virus, after his followers decided to take him at his words, and not wear masks or successfully social distance. Some of his followers still consider the virus to be a hoax. He has also decided to disallow any efforts on the part of any governmental agency to conduct any anti-racism training for the employees. After last week's revelations that he called war heroes who died in service to our country, "losers and suckers," it is amazing to me that he still has any followers left. Yet, he does. How can that be?

Finally, we watched "Unfit" last night on 'On Demand'. It is about how Trump is unfit to be president based on his mental health and his authoritarian impulses. It is very upsetting yet I recommend that you watch and ask your relatives to do so, too. This man needs help. We do not need him running our country. (We had to rent it for $5.99)


Good News: A few positive pieces of news found their way through the smokey haze---

1. Look to God for the Strength to Transcend Our Divisions and Build a More Just America. OpEd by John Kasich. (USA Today) This is worth the time to read the whole thing, but here is my favorite paragraph that comes after the paragraph where Kasich, a republican, says everyone should vote for Biden:

Many of our great leaders, here at home and throughout the world, have seen fit to call on the power of God to intervene in the affairs of men or to inspire us to listen to our better angels. Consider the words of Abraham Lincoln, speaking to Congress in 1861: “…having thus chosen our course, without guile, and with pure purpose, let us renew our trust in God, and go forward without fear, and with manly hearts.” Consider, too, these words from Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1936: “No greater thing could come to our land today than a revival of the spirit of religion — a revival that would sweep through the homes of the Nation and stir the hearts of men and women of all faiths to a reassertion of their belief in God and their dedication to His will for themselves and for their world.”

2. The Navajo Nation, reeling from so many coronavirus deaths, has now turned its attention to the election under its bipartisan leadership.  (ABC) If you would like to donate to their efforts to get-out-the-vote in Arizona, please follow this link. They currently have 22 paid workers in the field and need our help to support their efforts. (ActBlueNavajo)

3. Trump's idea to defer payroll taxes has turned into a liability for him. It was a bad idea which no one liked, but Trump made it an executive order anyway. Now he says if he is reelected he will make it permanent. That would spell the end for Social Security. It's turning out to be a very bad idea for Trump. (WaPo)

4. Dare I say it? The polls for Biden are looking very good right now. (dKos) Here are few tidbits that really intrigue me:

  • Trumps approval rating: Taken all together and aggregating the seven polls that were reported, average out to a margin of -11.43%.  
  • Predicted percentage of the vote: Trump 39.78%, Biden 54.58%. Just 4 days ago, on Sept. 5, the USC Dornsife poll showed a 9% margin. It is now a 15% margin.  In this poll Biden’s lead has widened by 6% over the last 5 days!//One week ago, on Sept. 2, the Reuters/Ipsos poll showed a 7% margin. It is now a 12% margin.  In this poll Biden’s lead has widened by 5% over the last week.
  • How does this compare to 2016? There are half as many undecided voters as there were at this time in 2016. Also 1% of Clinton voters say they will support Trump while 8% of Trump voters in 2016 now say they will vote for Biden. What I don't know is where are these 8% of voters living? If they are all in California or New York, it doesn't help.

5. Twitter saved me a few times this week, especially reading the thread from the tweet from Jon Meacham, a presidential historian, after Trump compared his actions of not telling the American people about the seriousness of the coronavirus to what Churchill told the Brits during WWII...

On the lighter side, and boy do I need a lighter side this week:

1. On a related note...

2. This goes without saying...

3. Ever feel like you are living in a Dystopian novel? 


4. I chuckle about this one every time I think about it.

5. And this one, forwarded to me by my husband...

6. As a teacher, I can't help myself...

7. Right about now Van Gogh is wishing he hadn't cut off his ear (forwarded to me from my daughter)

8. Sometimes we just don't seem to be communicating on the same level. (Shared by my other daughter). Here God and an angel have some miscommunication...

I hope next week I am a more cheerful version of myself. What will help make me happy right now is if you leave me a comment below or on my Facebook page. Thanks. I appreciate it that you took the time to read this.



  1. Happy to see a genuine Christianity on the right side of this election.

    1. I hope many Christians are listening, but the evangelicals don't seem to be listening.

  2. I like this mix of positive and negative because it's what we're all dealing with right now. It's important to be grateful for the good, while not ignoring the negative. I refuse to be 100% hopeful about a Biden win. And if he does, what then? I'm hoping that we won't end up with armed insurrection from the militias that Trump has already fired up. :( Any sign that Baby Boy will arrive soon?

    1. I have really been down this week. It is hard to not want to just cover my head and cry. The air quality in Puyallup is 200, it is 550 in Eugene. Awful.

  3. The oppression of the wildfires coupled with the unbearable assault on democracy is stifling. However, we must stay strong and fight, masks on, fist clenched and ballots ready.

    1. You keep me grounded, like a good military officer. Thank you.

  4. Thanks for your weekly curation of these humorous takes on our present misery. This too shall pass. Remember:
    "Everything will be OK in the end, and if it is not OK then this is not the end!"
    -- Sonny Kapoor (the optimistic innkeeper played by Dev Patel), in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.

  5. It has been a rough week. In our small town here in Texas, we are keeping track of politics by observing the ratio of Trump yard signs to Biden signs. Right now, T is ahead 3 to 2, but considering there were no observed signs for the Democratic candidate in the last presidential election, I'm going to take this as a positive.

    I'm so sorry to hear about all the wildfires in your area. I am praying and thinking good thoughts for all of you.

    Happy birthday to your grandson! Great photo of him with your dad.

    The Van Gogh comic made me laugh out loud. Thanks, Anne.

  6. The best part of the teacher meme? I immediately thought "you're" :-)

    It really is depressing between our narcissistic and evil president, western fires/awful air quality, online school, COVID, etc. Sigh. This too shall pass, right?

    1. Ha-ha! Probably only teachers caught the "your" not "you're".

  7. I hope the birthday party is a go! It sounds like you need something to celebrate. I saw something about "doomscrolling" on FB the other day. I've never heard the term before but that describes exactly what I've been doing all week. Air quality in Portland has been at about 590 for days now. I consider myself healthy, but even staying inside, I've been getting headaches and feel something sinus-y starting (I am prone to yearly sinus infections). I can't imagine how people with heart and lung problems or migraines are feeling. It's somehow comforting to think that there could be eight future presidents alive right now, hopefully learning from our mistakes. Enjoy your week!

    1. The birthday was a go and we had a fun time even though the air quality was bad.

  8. My thoughts and prayers for all of you in the wildfires area. So scary. As for the political stuff, I'm with you 100% - my feelings have been going up and down lately. I think I need to stay away from Twitter and maybe even Facebook. I'm just not understanding after all the things that have come out, including taped conversations, that people are just not getting it.

    However, I try to stay positive. But, I know it's not always easy.

    Take care and stay safe.

  9. Yes, things can seem so discouraging. I'm a firm believer that God will set things straight soon enough. The Back to the Future pic is hilarious! And so is the one of Van Gogh. Stay safe!

  10. Love the picture of your dad and grandson...sweet. It has been a terrible week in the news. I can't believe Trump has not issued a State of Emergency in CA, WA and OR. Well, perhaps when he visits CA he will do it then like the "showboater" he is:( SAD

  11. I know it’s been a hard week but I’m impressed by your balance of positive and negative. Always love to read your blog!

  12. What a sweet photo! Such a happy memory. Happy Birthday to Ian! I hope you were able to go forward with the party and that it was fun for everyone.

    I hope you get that rain. It's so desperately needed. There are so many fires. I heard about Oregon. It's all so devastating. We really need to get Trump out of office. He's coming to California this week and I don't see any good coming from it.

    I saw the one about the devil whispering in the teacher's ear on FB. It still cracks me up.

    I hope you have a better week, Anne. We really need some relief and good news.

  13. I am so sorry about the fires burning there and pray that you and your family stay safe. And I feel the same way about Trump and his lies. It's amazing to me that people can excuse that. I get that they may support some of his policies, even if I disagree, but flat out lying about what he knew and the timeframe. I truly feel that for some, nothing will get through. He has a teflon base and stuff that would sink anyone else just... doesn't.

    Anyways beautiful picture! What an awesome celebration. :) It's nice to look back at wonderful memories like that. And I'm encouraged by what you posted on the Navajo Nation. There are glimmers of hope even with all the bad stuff...

    I had to smile at the 2020 graphic. Poseidon for Biden made me laugh. :)

    Thanks for the good news, and be well this week!

  14. The wildfires are so frightening. Stay safe. I wont comment on the politics as my feelings are so negative on most politicians!

  15. I love that Back to the Future meme! That is sooooo spot on!

    I do hope the fires calm down and that you and your family will be safe.

    Have a good week!

  16. I hope you were able to enjoy your family party.
    I don’t understand how anyone believed Trump in the first place regarding the virulence of Covid, it’s prevalence in other countries was evidence he was lying. I have every hope Biden will win.

    Wishing you a great reading week, and take care x

  17. I hope it rains in the Northwest soon! We are getting some smoke here in Canada from all the fires. I'm as anti-Trump as you .... though I worry about the election ... can't trust the polls. too many nutty followers

  18. Anne, so many people are reading and enjoying your blog. I am just so sad about the fires that are devastating our beautiful Northwest. And for every family that has had their lives turned upside down. It just seems like this year is full of grief. So glad we have occasions like Ian's birthday and the birth of Baby Boy Adams #2 to remind there is life and joy still!

  19. What a lovely picture of your dad, he looked a very young 90!

    Trump, oh my, I feel for America I really do. I wonder what our Boris will say about him quoting Churchill. Is Trump likely to get another term?

    Stay safe, these fires look so horrendous, the pictures we are seeing on tv look apocalyptic.

  20. My friend and her family live in Edgewood and have not been able to leave their home for a bit now. She's got two middle schoolers. I hope the smoke clears out soon. Hang in there and thanks for the funnies. Those were much needed!

  21. Happy Birthday to Ian! And I know your dad is on your mind this week, too. I miss mine so much.

    The wildfires look horrible and frightening. I hope that you and your family and friends stay safe.

    The dystopian Venn diagram is funny but also too true! I am reading a dystopian YA novel now, but the world around us truly feels apocalyptic - I;m sure that is especially true on the west coast.

    Stay safe, Anne - and enjoy your books this week (though I think you could use some nice escapist fiction!)


    Book By Book


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