Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Feast Week

Well, it's almost Thanksgiving. Ramona heads to Camp Euphemism later today, Sydney prepares for some quiet time in the house, and Andy and I head to the airport. As we get ready to travel to NC for Thanksgiving, my thoughts turn to basketball and Maui. Both Carolina and Indiana are in the Maui Invitational this year (Carolina plays Notre Dame for the championship, while Indiana takes on Maui's own Chaminade for 7th place), and of course, last year, we spent Thanksgiving in Maui! Details of that trip can be found here, here, and here. I am very excited about traveling home in a few hours, but I must admit that part of me would rather be flying to Hawaii this evening.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone. I don't want to hear about anyone else eating salmon for Thanksgiving, so make sure to eat some turkey tomorrow!

Monday, November 24, 2008

C-bus House Donated to the IMA

This isn't exactly breaking news, but I am pretty excited about it. The family of J. Irwin Miller donated their house in Columbus to the Indianapolis Museum of Art. The house, designed by Eero Saarinen, will be restored and then opened to the public. For anyone who's not in the know, Columbus is known internationally for its architecture. Hope Zaharako's reopens in time for the opening!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Not Since 1964

Everyone knows by now that Indiana has not voted for a Democrat for president since 1964. And I am guessing everyone knows who that Democrat was. Most of you know that I have a minor interest in one Lyndon Baines Johnson, so it seemed like I would be negligent by not spending one post on this American president since I have an excuse to do so.

For those of you who didn't know me in college, conversations with me frequently went like this:
Unsuspecting Person: "Hi Elizabeth. How's it going?"
Me: "LBJ got screwed by the Vietnam War. He was meant to pass sweeping changes on the domestic side."
Unsuspecting Person: "Uh..." (backing away)

I wrote not one but two papers on LBJ in college (and remember now I was a science major). The first was called "A Legislator in a Guerrilla War: Lyndon Johnson and the Vietnam War" and the second was entitled "The Man vs. the Myth: How the Legacy of John F. Kennedy Affected the Presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson" (note that the actual file name for this paper is my great obsession.doc).

I am still completely proud of the fact that I managed to bring the Vietnam War into a presentation on mangroves in my Conservation Biology class (by the way, I am also fascinated by the Vietnam War and mangroves).

So, now you may be asking yourself...why was Elizabeth so interested in our 36th president? Many who studied that era would choose John F. Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, or Martin Luther King Jr. I am not saying those three weren't important or interesting; they certainly were, but for me, the tragedy of LBJ's presidency is what draws me to study him.

He had many flaws and made many mistakes, the biggest of which was entangling us deeper in Vietnam. He badgered people into agreeing with him. His personality was...uh...challenging. Here's a quote I took from one of my papers. Joseph Califano, his special assistant for domestic affairs, stated that Johnson "could be altruistic and petty, caring and crude, generous and petulant, bluntly honest and calculatingly devious---all within the same few minutes." He picked up his beagle by its ears (strangely, he also named his beagles "Him and "Her").

On the other hand, he got the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act passed. He started Medicare and Medicaid. He appointed Thurgood Marshall to the Supreme Court. He passed legislation to fund public schools. His interests and his strengths were on the domestic side, but his legacy will always be the Vietnam War. Surrounded by Kennedy's advisors (he kepts most including McNamara well into his presidency), he led America further and further into a war we could not win and shouldn't have been fighting (my opinion there). The truth was he never wanted to go, but he felt like he had to. That does not take away his responsibilty, but it further illuminates the tragedy of Vietnam.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Blankets Are for Losers

We saw this ad on MSNBC the day after the election, presumably when the cost of an ad on that channel went way down. These things pretty much rule.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Eat Your Heart Out John King

John King may have had a magic map, but I am very proud of the "interactive" map from our election night party! (Thanks to Alma for forcing me to draw this map during my recent trip to Seattle). I made the decision to use smiley faces and frowny faces in lieu of the more traditional red state/blue state designations. Check out those smiley faces in Indiana and North Carolina!!

By the way, it looks like the final tally will be 365-173. If you haven't seen this yet, check out Obama's new website. He's not messing around! I am still fired up!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Yes We Did!

I am happy today. I am proud of my country, and I am excited for the future.

I am also ecstatic that Indiana went for Obama! And that NC is super close and hopefully will swing that way too (at the very least, NC got rid of dead weight, barely North Carolinean Elizabeth Dole and brought in a new democratic governor).

I could probably ramble for hours, but I'll just say it's a good day to be a Democratic Hoosier Tar Heel!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day

Wow, I can't believe we made it. The polls are open in Indiana, and we are heading down to Greensburg to Get Out The Vote in a few minutes. I am still so nervous.

We're going to have so much free time when the election is's hoping we are happy enough with the results to enjoy it!