October 2007

The only thing I love more than watching a close football game is watching one where we come out the winners. And today, we got a barn burner of a game between 10th ranked OU and 19th ranked Texas.

People who aren’t from Oklahoma or Texas can’t really grasp what a huge rivalry ours is. Both teams are national powerhouses, even in rebuilding years, and with such strong feelings on both sides about the folks on the other side of the Red River, it makes us want to come out on top even more.  (To spell it out, Oklahomans have a bit of disdain – to say the least – for Texans and visa-versa.)

OU has three big rivalries — Texas, OSU (our in-state rival) and Nebraska. In years past, all three of these games would be huge, but with the downfall of Nebraska after their great coach, Tom Osborne retired at the end of 1997, only OSU and Texas are really left, and both are taken equally seriously, because very strong emotions are involved, and when that’s the case, anything can happen and often does.  There have been years when we’ve been unbeaten all season, only to meet one of these teams who wasn’t even ranked that year and then lose horribly.  The simple fact is that strong emotions make for great football.

Today’s game was back and forth all four quarters until OU finally moved ahead and stayed ahead in the fourth quarter, finally coming away victorious with a score of OU-28 and UT-21.

Life is good!!  


I came across a forum today that asked the question, “Why do you like the Beatles?” The person who asked the question is, himself, a huge Beatles fan, but he could never put into words why he’s such a huge fan.

It made me stop and think, because I absolutely love the Beatles. I’ve loved them since the first day I saw them at age three, when they came to the United States for the first time and changed us forever. When I was pregnant with my son 20 years later, I took time each day to put on a Beatles album and play it for him through headphones I placed on my belly.

So, if people ask him why he loves the Beatles, he has a pretty good answer. He was indoctrinated before birth. But what about the rest of us? What about me?

Right now, as I’m scratching my head trying to put it into words, I couldn’t give you a single reason. My love for them – for each of them individually and together as a group – is almost visceral. It goes beyond simple explanation. All I know is that they have always made me happy in a way that other 20th century musicians can’t come close to doing. As individual artists, each of them is — or in the case of John and George - was wonderful, but together, they were magic.

I could say it is the tunes themselves, the sweet harmonies created by boys/men who had no formal musical training (Paul still can’t read a note.), and that would be true. (But what about their “out there” later music? I love that, too.) I could say it was John, Paul, George and Ringo themselves, with their wit, their mop-top hair and their fun-loving attitudes, and that, also, would be true. (But what about the in-fighting, and – dare I say – the whole Yoko thing? Except for my extreme dislike for Yoko, none of that made me love them any less.) I could say it was the way they changed the world with their ideas and their music, and that would be true as well.

But none of that is enough.

I think the reason so many of us have problems putting into words why we love the Beatles is because it’s all of those things and more. For me and other baby boomers, they represented a new type of freedom. We had grown up in an age of buzz cuts and skirts just below the knees and all the restrictions that went with that kind of thing, and here came the Beatles. Not only did they look different and have those Liverpoolian accents that melted our hearts, but their tongue-in-cheek, irreverent way of dealing with the media and all the attention they lavished on them, made us feel great – as though our generation could poo-poo the world and all its problems. Their music, their smiles, and their attitudes gave us hope for a positive future. They sang about love, and they always sang it just to whoever was listening.

When I talk to young people today who love the Beatles, I get the same type of answer. No matter what words they use to describe their reasons for loving the group, the theme is the same – their music was awesome, and they just make us feel good. They were pure magic.

Whatever the reason, the Beatles are the only thing my son and I argue about these days. He says he’s a bigger fan than I am, and I say there is no way that could be true. Frankly, I believe it’s a tie, but no matter – I am one lucky Beatles fan, because he loves them so much. With his voice like honey and his talent for playing the piano and guitar, he entertains me each day with the most fantastic renditions of their music. (He knows every song.) I swear, had he been living in Liverpool in 1960, he’d have been one of them.

Often, we harmonize together, since we both know the tunes so well, and because our voices are so similar, the harmonies resonate in us, creating an inner warmth that’s really hard to describe. The sound we produce on those occassions is lovely and sweet.

I have a dream that, one day, Paul will hear how much we love him (we never miss a concert) and how well my son sings and plays his tunes and will come knocking at our door. We’ll sit together and talk while Michael tosses out some McCartney and Lennon/McCartney tunes, and then before he leaves, we’ll all harmonize together. He’ll be so impressed that he’ll invite Michael to come and work with him. Of course, it would never happen, but what a great fantasy; huh?

I’ll never forget the first time we got to see Paul in person. As the concert was about to begin, I remember saying, “Oh, I hope none of these women make fools of themselves by screaming and crying.” And then Paul came out, and the first words that came out of his mouth were, “Close your eyes and I’ll kiss you, tomorrow I’ll miss you,” and I cried like a baby. (I’m a little misty now just thinking of it.) I never expected to do that – it just came out – and as I looked down the row from me, I saw a very tough looking 50ish year old man doing the same thing and understood immediately that all of us who love the Beatles (and Paul) do so with deep, visceral emotion.

So, why do I love the Beatles so very much? Your guess is as good as mine, and in the end, it doesn’t really matter. They just make us happy, and that, in itself, is enough for our generation and for generations to come. There will never be another Beatles. And we are lucky enough to have seen them for ourselves. Wow. Magic.

Gotta love this.

If you read my blog entry on 9/26/07 you saw that I was very disturbed and frustrated with Rush Limbaugh and his inability to argue any issue without constant ad hominem attacks on people who don’t agree with him. In particular, a soldier called in who had served in Iraq and who also believes we should no longer be there. Instead of listening to the man’s comments and responding with a cogent argument for his own case, Rush said, “Yeah, and I was one of the astronauts that went to the moon,” and followed up with a diatribe claiming that anyone who was a “real soldier” wouldn’t feel that way. The caller, by the way, never got to say another word. Just as he does with almost all callers who disagree with him, Limbaugh cut the call off and ranted without giving his opponent any opportunity to rebut.

Now, Fox News.com reports that Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid has announced that Democratic leaders in the senate have drafted a letter to Mark Mays, president of Clear Channel Communications (the parent network of Limbaugh’s broadcast), asking that the network “publicly repudiate these comments that call into question (antiwar soldiers’) service and sacrifice” and asking that Limbaugh himself apologize.

Good luck with that.*

Clear Channel may back-pedal a little on behalf of Rush, but Limbaugh himself will never apologize. He’s not capable of doing that. The man didn’t even apologize to his listening Originally from: http://thefairandbalancednews.com/rush-limbaugh-oxycontin.jpgaudience for his drug use while on the air. Instead, he reached a plea deal that led to his record being expunged of prescription shopping for Oxycontin. So much for taking personal responsibility.

As someone who considers herself middle-of-the-road politically, I don’t like to align myself with either party, but I have to say hooray to the Demos for this. Limbaugh is out of control, and it shows on his program. Someone has got to do something about his rampant illogic and slippery slope argumentation. Free speech is one thing, but just as you can’t yell “Fire!” in a crowded theater, you also can’t insight the public with false and defamatory statements, simply because you have an opinion and a microphone.

Now, Limbaugh claims that the Senators are purposely misrepresenting his comments in order to discredit him. (And, instead of proving his point through logical argumentation, Rush again distorted reality by attacking his opponent personally, referring to the Senate Majority Leader as “Dingy Harry.” Nice. The guy who touts always respecting the office can’t follow his own advice.) He and everyone who heard him make the original statement know he’s lying, but he’ll claim he was misunderstood forever.

Of course, those with lolling tongues who believe every word that comes out of his mouth simply because he says it forcefully and they happen to agree with his politics will vehemently nod their heads at every word Limbaugh is saying. As a person who often agrees with him politically but is always disappointed by his inability to form a valid argument, I’m left hoping against hope that someone will see the light and get the man off the airwaves. There are too many good orators who are able to discuss the facts logically and effectively to be able to justify keeping such a poor one on the air.

As a media company, doesn’t Clear Channel realize that they are contributing to the very downfall of our nation? People like Rush Limbaugh don’t contribute positively in any way. Instead, they chip away at our political foundation by spoon-feeding lies and propaganda to people too weak to know the difference. Then those people vote based on the crap Limbaugh feeds them.

He’s not even helping his Republican/Conservative cause – he’s hurting it. He’s not hurting his Democratic/Liberal opponents; he’s helping them. With that in mind, what use is he? Again, the facts point to Clear Channel’s desire to line their pocketbooks to the detriment of their audience.

Last Tuesday, a veterans group opposed to the Iraq war will launch a TV ad campaign lambasting Rush. The ad will feature a Purple Heart recipient who was injured while serving in Iraq. I wonder how Rush will attempt to denigrate him. Will he accuse these veterans of being bad Americans? Probably. The bottom line is, though, that he won’t be able to call them “phony soldiers,” this time.

And, that, my fellow Americans, makes me smile.

Rush Limbaugh, if you read this, grow a pair and argue the points. Stop taking cheap shots and puffing out your chest and say something worth hearing. Maybe if you’ll stop looking in the mirror long enough to think of something besides yourself, you can do it.

*(Narcissists don’t apologize. They find it psychologically impossible to accept responsibility for any misdeed.  Not that I’m labeling Rush is a narcissist, mind you.  I’m just saying – as I did in my other blog entry about him – that, in my opinion, he displays the symptoms of suffering from that particular mental illness.)

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