While 2017 happens…

If not the very best picture of 2017 so far, the one below, which has been sweeping through Twitter, has to be in the running at least for best and most sympatico – “this man is all of us just living our lives while 2017 happens lol!” – amateur photo:

Man, Mower, Tornado

THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Cecilia Wessels, mandatory credit

According to the photo caption at Times Colonist, “Cecilia Wessels snapped the picture of her husband, Theunis, as the twister passed near their home in Three Hills.”


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3 comments on “While 2017 happens…

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  1. I had a more specific, very un-sympatico reaction. In the recent past, my neighborhood was populated by several lawn obsessed types who mowed their lawn 2, even 3 times a week. Imminent rain, especially thunderstorms (tornados are fairly rare here), seem to cause in them an uncontrollable urge to mow, lest the unmowed grass grow too much from the fresh rain to be outside acceptable limits. So it can be fairly common for them to mow through approaching lightning and thunder, right up to, and frequently past the arrival of downpours.

    This is only part of a larger pattern of annoying behavior, including lecturing lawn slackards and remowing their lawns whenever neighbors have outdoor gatherings. Lawn signs seem to indicate a high correlation with Tea Party politics and a fondness for that fellow.

    So I took this guy to be merely marginally more committed to the project of the perfect lawn (and by extension, the perfect libertarian world) than my neighbors. That is, anything but sympatico.

    Maybe I observe here only a local correlation between excessively committed lawn behavior and excessive political beliefs.

    • Yes – that is very un-sympatico reactionwise, bob. Which is unusual for you. Though Joni Mitchell might once have sympatico’d your unsympatico-ness kind of maybe, at least in the Summer.

      Main problem in my neighborhood, now that the drought is officially over, is the most lawn-obsessed near-neighbor loves his leaf-blower fiercely, meaning early wake-ups on a regular basis. He also happens to the only neighbor who throws loud latenight parties. I am thankful that he doesn’t connect the two practices, or at least hasn’t so far: Loud latenight party followed by early morning leafblowing.

      I don’t know whether he supported that fellow. It would surprise me for various reasons having to do with ethnicity. Might seem too personal a question for me to ask him, as we’re just neighbors, not friends, even though it might be interesting in relation to your theory, if not obviously definitive evidence in isolation – I mean as to whether relative lawn-obsession correlates more strongly with that-fellow-support than ethnic factors. We may never, sadly, know the answer, what with so many skilled researchers devoting themselves to tired, over-researched subjects like climate change and species extinction and such.

  2. I suspect that as you may suspect that lawn obsessed behavior correlates poorly with more general rightish political tendencies in the general pop. As the older generation of local lawn obsesses bow to their infirmities, the new generation, so far somewhat less obsessed, seem more mainstream politically. While still susceptible to the siren call not only of overly frequent mowing, but to fertilizers and weed killers, they seem to be otherwise agreeable humans.

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So, does Mitchell make any money on the work, which has been shared so many times? He uploaded a high-res image of the symbol and granted permission for anyone to use it personally for free. But for those who want to support his work or simply want something readymade, you can also buy T-shirts, sweatshirts, mugs, and journals emblazoned with the symbol through Threadless.“I really just want to spread the image as much as possible and cement it in history,” Mitchell says. “In all honesty, the amount I’ve made from my Threadless shop so far is still less than my hourly rate, so I don’t really see it as a big deal. If you look at my Twitter, half the replies are people wanting to know where they can buy a shirt. Threadless is happy to help them out with that, and so I’m happy to let that happen.”Now that the symbol has flooded our streets and our timelines, Mitchell just has one request: “Impeach this idiot already,” he says.

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This is a Waterloo moment for Trump, the tea party and their alliance.  They have been stopped in their tracks not only by Democratic opposition but because of a mutiny within their own ranks. Although never particularly liked or respected, it is now clear that they are no longer feared. The bankruptcy of their ideas and their incompetence have been exposed. Their momentum has been dissipated. Their rejection of political norms has itself been scorned. Our long national nightmare may finally be coming to an end.

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One seasoned Democrat told me that among the reasons Trump won in 2016 was that a long year of Crooked Hillary talk, about emails and Goldman Sachs and the like, had steadily demoralised and demobilised the liberal base. If sustaining fury at Trump helps keep those same voters energised, so they eventually turn out to defeat him, it’ll be worth it, he says.

But it can’t just be in the form of world-weary, if witty, tweets. What’s needed is a coherent argument, one that explains why Trump’s repulsive behaviour matters. For Americans, that will surely centre on the state of their society. The civic realm is being degraded by Trump’s lies, vanities and insults. The national conversation is being coarsened. The basic democratic assumption, that disagreements can be resolved through discussion rather than coercion and violence, is being eroded from the very top. Note the language of Scaramucci’s outburst: “I want to fucking kill all the leakers.”

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CK MacLeod
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+ BTW, I recently upgraded some this and that on the back end of the blog, and it does seem to make comments post much faster [. . .]
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For WordPress self-hosted people, there is already a "restore legacy editor" plugin, even though Gutenberg hasn't been installed yet as the default.

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+ I thought you were on WordPress.com, not self-hosted WordPress. I can't find any info on WordPress.com and Gutenberg or Gutenbergerish editing, so I don't know [. . .]
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