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electability vs. yummability
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form of arctic blast wind from Canadia

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Last night we had the lovely Melendra and shaven-headed Joe Sutliff Sanders over for dinner, which was most fun. Christopher outdid himself in the kitchen as usual (with menu chosen by moi): toasted walnut, blue cheese, belgian endive and radicchio salad (very bold flavors, but very nice) and sauteed pork tenderloin with a balsamic wine pan sauce, with steamed green beans. Uber yummability. (And thanks to Jon Hansen, far better with a search engine than I was last night, for answering our Naboombu-must-remember-question; I had no idea, btw, that BEDKNOBS AND BROOMSTICKS was based on two books by the same writer who wrote the wonderful Borribles series; have added to library list.) Too much wine was drunk, by all except Melendra as she is preggers, and the rest is a slight headache this morning. Justine called around 11 with much good news from Mexico and we discussed the differing world definitions of "spa" -- (I'm into the idea of hitting the hot baths outside of San Miguel, as I've never done hot baths, but what I'm really after is your basic pampering spa) -- and all the fun we will be having in EXACTLY TWO WEEKS. Well, almost exactly -- Christopher and I will be airborne en route in exactly two weeks. Tinglifying good news.

All early signs point to this being the year of Scott Westerfeld; Kirkus apparently loves MIDNIGHTERS 1: THE SECRET HOUR, as you all will too, I'm sure. And his other YA book seems to be generating early buzz as well. All to the good. World domination is nigh!

My day will be spent finishing up the short story I've been working on, as it is past, past, past time to begin revisions on the book. I printed out the whole first draft (316 pages) to get bound at Kinko's as my reading/notation copy yesterday and will do that this weekend. This week will be spent doing reading/notations and making some decisions and diagrams and charts and graphs and then I will invoke the tenth circle of phatasmagoric delight and begin the actual rewriting. In my wildest of dreams, I am done with the revision, or at least mostly done, by the time we go to Mexico. I realize this is unlikely, but a girl must set unattainable goals for herself every once in a while, eh? Christopher just arranged a power strip to be easily accessible for me next to the bedside. Where better to attempt a deadline than in bed.

And lastly... I've been doing a lot of thinking about the Democratic presidential candidates. Some, like Kerry, I just have a visceral negative reaction to (this NYTimes op/ed piece touches on why; he's a speechifier who throws out radical ideas without following up on them). Others I'm just not quite sure about, like Clark (even though he has a smart, screenwriter son who sometimes has been known to blog. There's actually a very nifty interactive Compare the Candidates graphic at the Washington Post which allows you to compare the platforms of all the candidates on the major issues, as well as offering an overall assessment of their candidacies. (Highly recommended; check it out.)

Obviously, what everyone wants here is someone who can beat Bush; and make no mistake, that's not going to be easy no matter who the eventual nominee is. The Bush warchest is HUGE, and the disinformation machine is very polished, and extremely practiced. I think I've been as guilty as anyone else of trying to look at candidates in terms of "electability," which the more I think about it, the more I question whether it exists. Here's the decision I've come to. The candidate with the best chance of beating Bush is going to be the one who will stay with it hardest, who won't lie down and play dead when things get hard, who wants it the most, who has the best chance of inspiring people to believe that they can actually change what's going on for the better by getting involved and voting.

At the moment, I think that candidate is Howard Dean. I wasn't sold on him until the last few days, but the yeagh! and the resulting aftermath of it sold me. The fact that this would be the first presidential candidate (and hopefully president) with a truly modern wife, who has her own life and is not going to take a leave of absence from it because she married a politician and that's expected of her, doesn't hurt. And also, here's the thing -- I like the yeagh! I can't imagine Bush ever being that _engaged_ in anything; this is a clear and passionate alternative.
I can't imagine Dean backing down in the room, in a debate, with Bush, and that's what I want. Because it's not going to be easy and if we lose, I'd rather be supporting someone who will go down in flames, fighting the good fight. That is what has the best chance of "electability" in my view, at this particular moment.

Edwards is probably next on my list, then Clark.

This is all, of course, subject to change. Despite the political pundits, this is still very early, and changing daily. I think we've got some time before things start to solidify -- weeks, anyway. And our primary here is irrelevant, so it hardly even matters on a practical level who Christopher or I choose to support.

Oh, and on another topic, I like these scary papier-mache heads by Sherry Deatrick in Louisville.

earworm: "Stairway to Heaven," Tiny Tim version

rec: NEWJACK: Guarding Sing Sing by Ted Conover

namecheck: Alan "King of the Ice Palace" Deniro (who has some great stuff up at Ptarmigan este momento)

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