Thursday, September 18, 2008

This Little Piggy Is Broken

I've hurt myself. Last weekend I worked in the garden getting ready for the city's scheduled Neighborhood Clean-up. I capitalize this because it's a big deal to have the city come pick up all the crap you need to get rid of. There is a cottage industry in trading junk and selling this cleaned-up, rehabbed junk to the trendy little used furniture stores scattered around the city. Folks in pick-up trucks cruise the area scheduled for junk removal looking for anything old and/or maybe broken that can be fixed and used or sold or traded. I suspect this cruising for cast-off crap will intensify as the economy gets worse. I'm thinking anyone with a car that gets parked on the street without a lock on the gas-cap will soon be finding the tank emptied over night.

Anyway, while working to get all the tree limbs and big trimmings, the digging up of unwanted volunteer trees, then dragging them to the curb, I acquired some gnarly bruises and a couple of puncture wounds which now have turned almost black.

Then there was the pot luck party that was a send off of one of the sons of the Ventura family who lived next door to me when I was a kid. Those boys used to spy on me when I was in nude sunbathing mode (I think I was sixteen). I was enough older than they were, that in their minds it was Maggy they now think they were spying on. (oh how I ramble on). Anyway, this now middle aged man is getting ready to move to Barcelona, where his lovely wife and three dogs and two cats now await. It was a fairly large neighborhood party. And for the first time in a long time I have nice though used duds that fit to wear to a party. So dressed in my new nice casual, I take my freshly baked peach cobbler and off I go.

It was lovely, but sometime in the evening I got a small cut that bled like crazy--it's the coumadin, so I was bleeding on my nice new clothes. I decided to quietly leave, walk across the street to find a bandage.

I keep bandages, hydrogen Peroxide, and other first aid remedies under the bathroom sink. So while squatting on the balls of my feet, rummaging through the mess that is that compartment looking for a bandage, when the rug I was standing on slipped out from under my feet and down I went, hard on the tailbone and lower back. But the worst of it was what happened to my arm. The back of my upper arm came down hard on the toilet seat. Really hard. That didn't break my arm, but I do now look like I have an abusive husband.

Then, the next evening I was typing away here at my desk, when the phone started ringing. It was in the evening, in the late part of the news hours. No one calls me them. I'm on the "Do Not Call List. I capitalize that because I think it's supposed to mean something. The base of my phone is a short roll away when I am sitting on my typing chair. If the phone isn't in its cradle, it's on my bed. I turned and hurried to try to locate the phone in the mess that is my bed. And in so hurrying, broke the little toe on my left foot. It is the third time since early spring that I have broken this particular toe, but it is the worst, most painful break so far, and I am on Coumadin, and the bruise and swelling, not to mention the pain, is heinous.

NY Times/CBS Polling

Times/CBS News poll suggested that Ms. Palin’s selection has, to date, helped Mr. McCain only among Republican base voters; there was no evidence of significantly increased support for him among women in general. White women were evenly divided between Mr. McCain and Mr. Obama; before the conventions, Mr. McCain led Mr. Obama among white women, 44 percent to 37 percent.

By contrast, at this point in the 2004 campaign, President Bush was leading Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts, the Democratic challenger, by 56 percent to 37 percent among white women.

Among other groups, Mr. Obama had a slight edge among independents, and a 16-percentage-point lead among voters ages 18 to 44. Mr. McCain was leading by 17 points among white men and by the same margin among voters 65 and over. Before the convention, voters 65 and older were closely divided. In the latest poll, middle-age voters, 45 to 64, were almost evenly divided between the two.

The latest Times/CBS News nationwide telephone poll was taken Friday through Tuesday with 1,133 adults, including 1,004 registered voters. The margin of sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points for all respondents and for registered voters.

The poll was taken during a period of extraordinary turmoil on Wall Street. By overwhelming numbers, Americans said the economy was the top issue affecting their vote decision, and they continued to express deep pessimism about the nation’s economic future. They continued to express greater confidence in Mr. Obama’s ability to manage the economy, even as Mr. McCain has aggressively sought to raise doubts about it.

This poll found evidence of concern about Ms. Palin’s qualifications to be president, particularly compared with Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware, Mr. Obama’s running mate. More than 6 in 10 said they would be concerned if Mr. McCain could not finish his term and Ms. Palin had to take over. In contrast, two-thirds of voters surveyed said Mr. Biden would be qualified to take over for Mr. Obama, a figure that cut across party lines.

And 75 percent said they thought Mr. McCain had picked Ms. Palin more to help him win the election than because he thought that she was well qualified to be president; by contrast, 31 percent said they thought that Mr. Obama had picked Mr. Biden more to help him win the election, while 57 percent said it was because he thought Mr. Biden was well qualified for the job.

This poll was taken right after Ms. Palin sat down for a series of high-profile interviews with Charles Gibson on ABC News.

Over the last two weeks, Mr. McCain has increasingly tried to distance himself from his party and President Bush, running as an outsider against Washington. The poll suggested the urgency of Mr. McCain’s task: The percentage of Americans who disapprove of the way Mr. Bush is conducting his job, 68 percent, was as high as it has been for any sitting president in the history of New York Times polling. And 81 percent said the country was heading in the wrong direction.