Archive for October, 2009

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Posted in Faith on October 31, 2009 by auer83

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Out of love for the truth and the desire to bring it to light, the following propositions will be discussed at Wittenberg, under the presidency of the Reverend Father Martin Luther, Master of Arts and of Sacred Theology, and Lecturer in Ordinary on the same at that place. Wherefore he requests that those who are unable to be present and debate orally with us, may do so by letter.

In the Name our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

~ Martin Luther

Thank You Ann Landers

Posted in Humor, Politics on October 26, 2009 by auer83

The elaborate version:

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HUMOR
POLITICAL COW ANALOGY

– DEMOCRAT: You have two cows. Your neighbor has none. You feel guilty for being successful. You vote people into office who put a tax on your cows, forcing you to sell one to raise money to pay the tax. The people you voted for then take the tax money, buy a cow and give it to your neighbor. You feel righteous. Barbara Streisand sings for you.

– REPUBLICAN: You have two cows. Your neighbor has none. So?

– CAPITALISM, AMERICAN STYLE: You have two cows. You sell one, buy a bull, and build a herd of cows.

– DEMOCRACY, AMERICAN STYLE: You have two cows. The government taxes you to the point you have to sell both to support a man in a foreign country who has only one cow, which was a gift from your government.

– BUREAUCRACY, AMERICAN STYLE: You have two cows. The government takes them both, shoots one, milks the other, pays you for the milk, then pours the milk down the drain.

– AMERICAN CORPORATION: You have two cows. You sell one, lease it back to yourself and do an IPO on the 2nd one. You force the 2 cows to produce the milk of four cows. You are surprised when one cow drops dead. You spin an announcement to the analysts stating you have downsized and are reducing expenses. Your stock goes up.

– SOCIALIST: You have two cows. The government takes one and gives it to your neighbor. You’re placed in a cooperative to tell him how to manage your cow.

– COMMUNIST: You have two cows. The government seizes both and provides you with milk. You wait in line for hours to get it. It is expensive and sour.

– FRENCH CORPORATION: You have two cows. You go on strike because you want three cows. You go to lunch. Life is good.

– JAPANESE CORPORATION: You have two cows. You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary cow and produce twenty times the milk. They learn to travel on unbelievably crowded trains. Most are at the top of their class at cow school.

– GERMAN CORPORATION: You have two cows. You re-engineer them so they are all blond, drink lots of beer, give excellent quality milk, and run a hundred miles an hour. Unfortunately they also demand 13 weeks of vacation per year.

– ITALIAN CORPORATION: You have two cows but you don’t know where they are. While ambling around, you see a beautiful woman. You break for lunch. Life is good.

– RUSSIAN CORPORATION: You have two cows. You count them and learn you have five cows. You have some more vodka. You count them again and learn you have 42 cows. You count them again and learn you have 12 cows. You stop counting cows and open another bottle of vodka. You produce your 10th, 5-year plan in the last 3 months. The Mafia shows up and takes over however many cows you really have.

– TALIBAN CORPORATION: You have all the cows in Afghanistan, which is two. You don’t milk them because you cannot touch any creature’s private parts.

– POLISH CORPORATION: You have two bulls. Employees are regularly maimed and killed attempting to milk them.

– FLORIDA CORPORATION: You have a black cow and a brown cow. Everyone votes for the best looking one. Some of the people who like the brown one best vote for the black one. Some people vote for both. Some people vote for neither. Some people can’t figure out how to vote at all. Finally, the Florida Secretary of State and a bunch of guys from out-of-state tell you which is the best looking one.

Concerning Autumn

Posted in Bits of Home, The Good Life on October 25, 2009 by auer83

“There are some people, nevertheless — and I am one of them — who think that the most practical and important thing about a man is still his view of the universe.”

~ G.K. Chesterton

Sunday Breakfast:

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When you live with a German, you have to have potatoes.

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They’re no Haffner biscuits, but they’ll do.

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Hand cut bacon from Schubert’s – Millstadt, IL. One thing I’ve learned, midwest butchers know how to cut pig.

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Guess who washes these after breakfast?

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Wash it down with some Trader Joe’s Sumatra in a familiar yellow mug. Mmm, tasty.

Really, it’s too bad we don’t live in Redwall. Otherwise, we’d enjoy an Autumn feast of the following:

Care to try some of the recipes? They’re all real, and most are available at The Redwall Kitchen

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On The Bookshelf:

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Wife has been meaning to read this for a while (it was her grandfather’s favorite novel), and after a good friend personally recommended that we read the series, we’ve decided to plug away at it little by little. Somehow it didn’t occur to us immediately that the rather meaty 850 page book we started was the third, not the first, of the series.

My bad.

Worth A Look:

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Marie-Isabelle Callier is actually a mother of one of my students. Along with being a wonderful dedicated parent, she is a writer and illustrator of a small series of children’s books.

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She’s hoping to have what she has already published translated into English and has more in progress. I really love what has been printed already. They are all roughly centered around three children – twin boys and an older sister – who strangely enough look similar to Calier’s own children.

In the iPod:

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Brandi Carlile\’s Give Up the Ghost was released on a day I just happened to be checking up on my itunes. This particular album is a just a tad more reserved especially for Carlile who, at her best, is known for her distinctly robust vocals and knock-out delivery.

She was first introduced to mainstream (or maybe just to me) in a series of American auto commercials, and hasn’t lost ground since. The style suggests that she fancies herself a female disciple of Johnny Cash with perhaps the legacy and success that Lisa Marie Presley was looking for.

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At worst she can be a bit over the top, melodramatic enough to betray her age, and in more than one instance her vocals could use some restraint.

Overall though, I like the album a lot.

Maybe it’s just me, but I hear a little bit of Nashville in her sound. You can’t help but respect her unapologetic style, confidence, and vocal power. Almost all her songs sound like covers. One way or another there’s something familiar about this album, and anything that reminds me this much of home is worth the buy

Autumn inevitably means:

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Of course I’m a big fan of cigars. But between Halloween and Thanksgiving I put down the cigar cutter and dedicate some time to the pipe. There are few genuine fall activities that cannot be accompanied by a pipe filled with a hearty latakia, strong English, mellow Virginia, or sweet Aromatic.

So What’s Smoke’n?

I’m frequently switching mixtures to find out which one is best suited for my bulldog pipe, but I keep on coming back to And So to Bed by Esoterica Tobacciana. Concerning its flavor profile, Tobaccoreviews.com had the following description:

Finest grade Virginia and Maryland type tobaccos are carefully aged and blended with Greek “Oriental” leaf and top-grade Cyprian Latakia. the blend is then specially processed and additionally matured to produce a mellow full strength smoke with rich flavor and unique aroma.

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If I want to smoke something that has knockout power I’d smoke a strong Churchill, but when choosing strictly pipe leaf I tend to stay closely on the mild side. This mixture is no exception with a delicate aroma, just enough complexity, sweet taste, and slow burn. I’d like to eventually make my own mixtures, but in the meantime this will do quite nicely.

Around the World, One Auer at a Time

Posted in Auer Family, Bits of Home on October 23, 2009 by auer83

It’s been a pretty long time since I’ve updated, and plenty has been going on.

So what’s going on with the fam?

Marines

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JE and his platoon  were sent to California a few weeks ago. They’ve been training in the sand, eating MRE’s, and generally making a mess of things.

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He’s now back in NC, awaiting further instructions. So far it’s still a waiting game.

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I asked JE if he enjoyed his leisurely visit to the Golden state. He replied that he was just glad he could unload live rounds into a moving target every day.

Sis, Mom, Pater

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The trio is currently in Japan (surprise, I know). Helen is still enjoying living reasonably asian, and my parents are enjoying staying reasonably (though artificially) sane.

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Dad has been making speeches including one atop the new and first JMSDF aircraft carrier. Mom has been visiting the hot springs. All three attended an interesting meeting which was scheduled to culture a stronger relationship between Vanderbilt University and its new sister school located on the island. So far, it’s been quite a winner…

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… so they celebrated by eating tasty oriental munchies. Pretty safe to say, the Japanese know a little  about cooking.

Back at the Ranch

Wifey and I have been doing our thing here – teaching, nursing, eating Five Guys, and enjoying the colors of Autumn. We even took a weekend off and went to a friend’s wedding back in Nashvagas. It was a hit.

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Note T-Rex claw.

Why yes, this is in fact me either enjoying the Hokey Pokey or feeling the heat of Backstreet Boys.

Either way, there isn’t an excuse for this.

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This picture essentially sums up my life right now.

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Good news! Our flowers are blooming! Now for all green thumbers: Are these Mums or Chrysanthemums?

…. hmmmmmm?

Of course I’m asking this as if I know the answer.

More later.

October 16

Posted in Humor, Politics on October 16, 2009 by auer83

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Lazy Sunday

Posted in Bits of Home, Uncategorized on October 11, 2009 by auer83

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Hard life for a Pug… really…

I mean, when you’ve got an IKEA pup tent…

President Barack Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize 2009

Posted in Politics on October 9, 2009 by auer83

You may have read a while back that Vice President Al Gore beat Irena Sendler in 2007 for the Nobel Peace Prize. on February 1st 2009 – less than two weeks after he took office – President Barack Obama was nominated for the same award. Who else was nominated in 2009?

“Obama defeated a fellow American, former US Army medic Greg Mortenson, who was also nominated for this year’s Nobel Peace prize.

For the past 16 years Mortenson has been tirelessly battling against Islamic religious extremism in Afghanistan and Pakistan that denies any education at all to young girls, leaving them completely illiterate.

He has founded and leads not one, but two non-profit charities that helped to build schools all across both countries for girls. They are:

The Central Asia Institute: http://www.ikat.org/

and Pennies for Peace: http://www.penniesforpeace.org/

Both organizations fight against the hatred taught in many fundamentalist Islamic schools, and instead teach love and respect for all of mankind.

He even wrote a best selling books about his efforts to improve the lives of Muslim girls in Afghanistan and Pakistan, by giving them an education. It is called

“Three Cups of Tea”: http://www.threecupsoftea.com/

Here is a photo of him teaching young girls in Pakistan how to read:

Click the image to open in full size.

Mortenson recognized the dangers brewing in these countries caused by extreme ignorance and oppression long before the US government did. He began his campaign of school building back in 1993, initially only in Pakistan.

In 1996, Taliban agents kidnapped him in Pakistan, and held him for 8 days for ransom. Later, the Taliban made an assination attempt on his life in 1996, which failed.

Mortenson can no longer travel in either country, as both the Taliban and Al-Qaeda have issued calls for him to be be-headed as a religious heretic.

However, the work of both of the charities that he founded continues on.

Last year the government of Pakistan awarded him that country’s greatest civilian award: “The Star of Pakistan” He was only the 5th foreigner to win the award, since it was first given out in 1958.

Greg Mortenson was the official 2009 Nobel Peace Prize nomination made by the Congress of the Unites States of America.

Young children all across Pakistan and Afghanistan love and adore him.”

Click the image to open in full size.