Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Roslin and Baltar, The Farm and the

Watching Battlestar Galactica season 2.5. Some random thoughts:

1. Did not know that Dana Delany was in this series.
2. The Billy-Dualla-Lee-Starbuck situation isn't working. And Shavon? What was that about? As good looking and high ranking as Lee is, he can't find either a quick hook up or a relationship easily?

Frankly, the only romantic relationships I think makes sense are Baltar and Six and Sharon and Helo. We actually saw Sharon and Helo's relationship progress. Sharon and Tyrol's was a given then got all frakked up. Starbuck and Lee sometimes has sexual tension, sometimes not, so it's all over the place. Billy and Dualla's the first budding relationship we saw in the miniseries but it seemed forced and frankly, I never believed them as a couple.

I want Dualla and Lee to work, but not enough has been shown of their courtship for me to believe them as couple. I know in the podcasts Ron Moore talked about how that relationship could have been done better so I've been looking for signs of growing affection between Lee and Dee, even in the deleted scenes, but just not enough has been shown.

And Starbuck's still hung up on Anders but we only hear her talk about it in "Scar. " In Scar she wants Lee as a quick lay and he's willing and 2 episodes later Lee's with Dualla and Starbuck's okay with it? Ah, Starbuck and Apollo are a messed up pair.

Okay, now for the big issue.

It galled me that Roslin banned abortion. To her credit, BSG showed that it galled her too but a hard decision to make she felt she had to make. I know that there's less than 50K humans left but banning abortion without making provisions for how to care for unwanted children is a disaster. Look at Romania in the 1990s that banned abortion to build the native population. It resulted in a lot of unwanted children abandoned in institutional orphanages who grew up to have emotional problems.

Plus in the episode "The Farm" which was about the Cylons using women as baby making machines against their will. And now in "The Captain's Hand" Roslin's done the same!

Roslin and Baltar are an interesting match. They're both ambitious but not overtly so. Madame Airlock has shown that she's willing to kill and trample over rights to do what she thinks she has to and to stay president. As Adama said, she's made of sterner stuff than people give her credit for.

And Gaius didn't want to be president until Roslin wanted him to step down and now he's come out to the press and to Roslin's face that he's going to run against her. For everyone else, it seems like a bolt from the blue but we know that Six has been goading him along.

Monday, June 28, 2010

The Two Sides of the Atlantic: Florida and Europe

The past few days have been busy. Last week Husband and I went down to Ft. Lauderdale in Florida. He had a deposition to do, I went along for the ride. We spent a lot of time looking at the beach and Atlantic Ocean but not getting into it. The sand was too soft. We also spent a lot of time at the hotel pool, but didn't get into it either. There were too many kids.

However, we did avail ourselves to the bars and watched the USA-Ghana soccer game. Gotta say, still not a fan of the game.

We got back Saturday night, then on Sunday we hosted dinner for the European Marshall Memorial Fellows who came through Atlanta.

Each year, the US and Europe select 60 emerging leaders in the fields of business, philanthropy, politics, etc. under the age of 40 and send them on trips across the Atlantic to continue the bond the grew out of the Marshall Plan after World War II. I did my trip in 2007. In fact, I started in blog as a place to record my experience.

When I knew that the European fellows were coming through Atlanta this year, I immediately offered to host Sunday dinner. From my experience, I knew that there'd be little planned for them on Sunday, since most people aren't doing meetings on Sunday.

I also planned a home cooked meal, since the fellows are traveling for 3 weeks, eating out all the time. A home cooked meal's a nice change. The menu was:

chips and salsa
carrots, Wheat Thins, and onion soup dip w/sour cream
tossed salad with mandarin orange and boiled eggs
brown rice
baked chicken with potatoes, onions, and rutabagas, seasoned with Zatarain's cajun seasoning
for dessert: mini-pineapple cakes imported from Taiwan. They're like little fig newtons, but with pineapple centers.

Here they are, all busily eating. Interestingly, front and center in this pic are 2 lawyers: Husband in Atlanta, and Emrush from Kosovo. The other fellows are a Spanish economics professor, a Portugese media guy, and a German working for the Church on refugee issues. Two other European fellows didn't make it, including a Greek woman named Afroditi (isn't that cool?) who's early in her pregnancy, and another guy who was working.

The American fellows who came were my local city councilman who apparently has a day job, but I never hear him talking about it; and an IT venture capitalist (I think) but all I know is he volunteers to be the local host for the European fellows every year.

It was a busy but fulfilling long weekend. Tonight is the farewell dinner for the EMMFs as they move on to Cleveland.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Big Sister

Just signed up to be a Big Sister in the Big Brother Big Sister program. I have my interview on July 1.

My biological younger siblings are laughing their asses off. Not really.

Wish me luck.

I guess if this works out, I'll be writing about Sister, my biological sister, and Little Sister, the girl I get matched with.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Birthday / Father's Day / World Refugee Day!

Today is June 20.

In my family, it's Brother Two's birthday. He turns 33 today. Just found out it's also my friend D's birthday. She and Brother Two were born on the exact same day.

In the US, it's Father's Day. In Taiwan, Father's Day not until August 8. But I'll probably try calling my dad anyway.

And it's also World Refugee Day to bring attention to an incredibly vulnerable population of people. The United Nations defines refugees as people who are fleeing their home country due to being persecuted due to their race, religion, political beliefs, and membership in a social group.

From the United Nations High Commission on Refugees website:
UNHCR was set up in 1951 to help the estimated 1 million people still uprooted after World War II to return home. Since then, we have helped find durable solutions for tens of millions of refugees and they remain our core constituency.

The latest figures available show that the number of refugees of concern to UNHCR stood at 10.5 million refugees at the beginning of 2009, down 8 percent from a year earlier.

A further 4.7 million registered refugees are looked after in some 60 camps in the Middle East by United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), which was set up in 1949 to care for displaced Palestinians.

The refugees of concern to UNHCR are spread around the world, with more than half in Asia and 22 percent in Africa. They live in widely varying conditions, from well-established camps and collective centres to makeshift shelters or living in the open.

More than half of all refugees of concern to UNHCR live in urban areas. They all face three possible solutions: repatriation; local integration or resettlement

There's a website with streaming video at to commemorate World Refugee Day at

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Kiss -- Adama and Roslin

Watched BSG season 2.5 disc 1. Don't remember what the episode's called, but it ends with the tiniest of kisses between Roslin and Adama. I'm really looking forward to seeing how that relationship develops.

Also, I plan on watching the disc again with the commentary. I love the look on Lee Adama's face when he realizes how ruthless President Roslin can be.

Work is full of emotional highs and lows. We have a national training we're conducting where I'm supposed to be modeling women's leadership. Simultaneously I find out the day the training begins that my own leadership is being called into question.

The training has been wonderful and it's been 12 hour days since Saturday. So I'm taking tomorrow off to rewatch this BSG disc for the commentary. I also bought Leverage seasons 1 and 2, so will be watching those commentary too. Plus there are eps I haven't seen yet. I will be drooling over Eliot's hair.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Dreaming of a Russian River Cruise

Recently I went to DC for a conference, again, and stayed with Sister, again. On Wed, we both took a vacation day and hung out.

The plan was to go to the botanical garden where she's getting married this fall, but it started raining, so we went to Fiber Space yarn shop, where I got the above:

Circular knitting needle case by Della Q
Sock Yarn by Miss Babs in the colorway Raven

I also got a itty bitty circular needle, just 9 inches long, size 2.5 mm. I could use them for socks, but probably will use them to knit stuffed snakes in the round.

Still working on the green shawl, on 2.5mm needles, so that's slow going, but portable and mindless. Perfect for watching the view go by as we go cruising down the Volga River for a month.

That's what Husband and I have been dreaming of for vacation. A river boat cruise, from Moscow to St. Petersburg for a month. Or from Singapore, through the islands of Malaysia and Indonesia, with stops in Australia and New Zealand.

That's not going to happen this year, nor next, but it's fun to dream about. More realistically we are looking at a 3 or 4 day cruise down the Hudson River from NYC to Montreal. Just sit, knit, and watch the world go by.
ETA: Work is incredibly stressful this week. There was a board meeting on Saturday where I was to be evaluated by the board of directors. That's always fun. Then they dropped the news that an anonymous complaint was lodged against me so they want 5 years worth of financials, reports, etc. Plus I feel like all they did was tell me what I did wrong, nothing about what I did right. Then after the meeting, we started a national training and I'm supposed to be all happy, encouraging and upbeat, after all that? I started e-mail all the requested stuff to the board chair and of course a lot is getting bounced back because her mailbox is full.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Good bye Cold Mountain

The Cold Mountain Stole is kicking my butt. I've started it twice and keep miscounting.

It's really a very simple and logical pattern of zig zags. If you know how to read your knitting, it's easy to memorize and pick where ever you stop.

However, I have cast on, messed up, cast on again, messed up again.

I give up. I will use green Creatively Dyed yarn (very forgiving for all the knitting, ripping out, reknitting) to make a shawl inspired by The Fine Line by Grace Anna Farrow.

Specifically, I will use the construction of Dawn as the template:

Basically, I will cast on at the center top and knit a top down triangle until the tip and the hypoteneuse are as long as I like. Then knit out the wings on the bias until the wingspan is what I like.

The green yarn is varigated so I think it would work with this simple construction.

And there's no lace.