Happy Autonomy Day!

First things first – thanks to the guest bloggers who made my week-long holiday possible. Jacque, Steve, Beth-Ann, tim, Chris, and Anna kept Baboon land lively through the week and set comment records. Thanks for the wonderful writing and fun discussions! Clearly the baboon tribe can thrive without a leader.

Speaking of that, today is Autonomy Day, an official holiday in the Åland Islands. I love the name – “Autonomy Day”. Not quite “Independence,” but close – the sort of thing that might be made available to an 18 year old if they have a history of making good decisions about piercings and tatoos.

The Åland Islands are a collection of rocky outcroppings with enough strategic importance to put them in a perpetual tug-of-war between Sweden and Finland.

I’d never heard of the place before today, so I’m no expert and of course I’ve never been there, but I love Wikipedia’s serpentine description of Åland Islands status:

They are situated at the entrance to the Gulf of Bothnia and form an autonomous, demilitarised, monolingually Swedish-speaking region of Finland.

What? Swedish speaking but a region of Finland? Not only that, but Swedish speaking by law. But how can a place be autonomous and also a region of some other place? Both Sweden and Finland strike me as particularly fine places to visit, so the Åland Islands could be like their love child, combining the best qualities of both, right? Or they could be the children of a messy, bitter divorce, torn between resentful parents.

The Contested Area

Apparently there were hard feelings during the Åland Crisis in 1917 and 18 when the custody battle was especially intense. Swedes argued that the Åland Islands were culturally Swedish. Finland contended they were geographically Finnish. Oh, and the Russian Revolution had an influence on the discussion, which became heated. The tussle was even expressed on maps of the day, which makes the terrain sound like a political issue alternately described by Fox News and MSNBC. Again, from Wikipedia:

On the Swedish map, the most densely populated main island dominated, and many skerries (small rocky islands) were left out. On the Finnish map, a lot of smaller islands or skerries were, for technical reasons, given a slightly exaggerated size. The Swedish map made the islands appear to be closer to the mainland of Sweden than to Finland; the Finnish map stressed the continuity of the archipelago between the main island and mainland Finland, while a greater gap appeared between the islands and the archipelago on the Swedish side.

But as a result of all this back and forth, we have a rocky sea-land situated between two great nations, politically autonomous and perpetually demilitarized, culturally Swedish and technically Finnish. And somewhat ambiguously mapped.

Switzerland with surf? Sounds like a fun place to visit, but what an odd history.

Describe a time when you had to unravel a case of divided loyalties.

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117 thoughts on “Happy Autonomy Day!”

  1. Good morning. Autonomy day in Aland. I wonder what they do to celebrate. Perhaps they have a song that starts out with the line “Aland is our land”.

    I can’t think of any big conflicts in loyalty in my life. I’m sure there were, but I think I have suppressed my memories of them. I did have to be careful when it came to pies baked in my family. My mother made very good pies and so does my wife. When my mother was still with us I had to be careful not to heap too much praise on her pies. My wife is very proud of her pie baking skill and it certainly would not have been a good thing to suggest that mother’s pies were better than those of my wife.

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  2. I used to live in Hudson. Culturally Minnesotan, geographically Wisconsinian. Football season was a little difficult for some residents to negotiate, but I sidestepped that by simply ignoring pro football altogether. Wisconsin didn’t have a major league baseball team when I lived in Hudson, so there was no conflict there.

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    1. sports are a great conflict. i love the rivalries that exist between neighboring enthusiastic folks. it makes the years when your team is awful more meaningful when you have a rivalry to look forward to. even if you suck beating the good team takes on special meaning. vikings packers often seem to be on the opposite end of the roller coaster. twins brewers used to have a little rivalry til they went over to the other leagus. now we play 3 games a year and its a fun excuse to go cheer your team in the other guys stadium.

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      1. Florida has some fierce sports rivalries. I went to the University of Miami and my sister went to University of Florida. Back then they were big rivals, but my sister never gave a care about football so she and I never had any clashes over it. I did used to get into it with her friends on a regular basis, though, which caused a problem for her. She used to get mighty cranky with me when I got into a “discussion” with her pals about football. Luckily nothing ever got too heated, but she still hated when I did that. I informed her that, as the big sister, it was my obligation to annoy her, so I was just doing my job. :)

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        1. It must be a southern thing . . . that business of identifying so intensely with a team. David Sedaris writes well about this. One of the ways he passed for a “normal” (ie heterosexual) person was to pretend to have a favorite team.

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        2. I don’t think it’s exclusive to the south, Steve – my relatives in NY can go at it about the Jets and the Giants on a regular basis. Either you care about a sport or you don’t, and if you do you’re likely to have a team that you pull for. Right now I’m having conflicting loyalties with myself because the Miami Heat, my home team, is battling against Boston’s Celtics for the Eastern Conference finals, and I love the Celtics too. So I’m going to have to get into an argument with myself while I watch the last game tonight! :)

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        3. I’ll have to remember the “just doing my job” line with my little sister. We agree on very few things. Luckily, we live very far apart, and it seems silly arguing via email. I agree with you, Chris, in my experience, it doesn’t matter where you come from if you’re a rabid fan of a sport and have a favorite team. Denmark and Sweden have a long-standing rivalry in soccer (real football!); things could get pretty ugly after those matches.

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        4. Yes, the soccer rivalries can be pretty intense, PJ. I’ve seen some British matches that turned ugly as well. My husband’s team, growing up in Scotland, was the Glasgow Rangers, and they have a huge rivalry with Glasgow Celtic. But that one is particularly nasty sometimes since the fans of those teams are divided along religious lines as well, with Rangers being the team Protestants identify with and Celtic being the Catholic’s preference. When you have sport AND religion rolled together, it gets particularly combustible sometimes.

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    2. I guess it would be good, Linda, to not have to choose between the Vikings and the Packers since it seems that there are some very loyal fans for both of these teams. As a graduate of Purdue living in Minnesota and with a daughter who graduate from the U of MN, I could have some conflicts in sports loyalty, but I don’t. My interest in sports has decreased over the years. I am a Twins fan and I was a fan of the Tigers, but I didn’t have any trouble switching my loyalty to the Twins.

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    3. I was born in UP Michigan only 2 hours from Green Bay. When I moved to MN my brothers, staunch Packer Backers, tried to create a rivalry but gave up because I really didn’t care. When another brother moved to Chicago, it took a few years until the Bears worked their magic on him and then it was on. When it comes to important games, I always want the Packers to win because I know that my youngest brother will be sooooo happy if they do. I’ll even check the score during the game. When GB loses, none of my siblings mentions it for at least a week to give him time to recover.

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        1. Wow, Alanna. I have never met a Yooper Lions fan but I am very out of the football loop. Although, I had a brother who broke a mirror when practicing his moves while wearing a football helmet. So it may be nature not nurture.

          I think I must have lived in an area (Escanaba, Flat Rock and Perronville) where the divide between the UP and Lower MI was rather serious, 51st state and all that. I haven’t lived there for over 40 years but I think there has been some succession talk again. I doubt that it would ever happen but there are some independent thinkers up there. Nice to meet you.

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    4. I never understood why folks identified with one professional sports team over another, or Coke vs Pepsi or Ford vs Chevy. Must be some urge toward tribalism that passed me by.

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  3. “This land is Aland,
    This land is my land,
    I’m sure there’s no land,
    like our little island,
    sometimes we’re Finnish,
    sometimes we’re Swedes
    but this land was made
    for you and me.”

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  4. my big conflicts came during the divorce form the first wife. she works in schools and she had access to the dragonlady lawyer who kicks ass int he names of abused children and talked my wife into making me a child abuser because i made them live in a house with clothes piled on the floor and i treated them with homeopathic medicine which endangered their lives under my watch. she had the kids taking pictures and keeping notes on her list of questions the dragonlady had told her to prepare for trial. its pretty funny trying to make nice with the mother of my children after she pulls mean spirited stuff that she knew was poppycock. someone told me once that the kids know the difference and you dont fool them at all. that was my greatest comfort. i stayed true to the twisted version of straightforward i embrace and the kids appreciate that. i am sure if i focus on it i can think of other cancerous times in my life i fought to get through. thanks dale what a fun topic.

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    1. Families are producers of divided loyalties. My brother and parents put me there for 45 years. My parents were so wrong but my brother thought that allowed him supreme righteousness and unforgiveness, which left my sister and I very divided between the two sides, for which my brother announced he was an only child and stormed off.
      My daughter is a high D of DISC inventory meaning not only directive but demanding. My wife is an I to the point that you can never get her to answer a direct question but she wants everything her way but wants no one to know it. Divided loyalties for me when the clash.

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    2. Hey tim–nothing like divorce, huh? Especially with kids involved. Those divided loyalties can break the kids. I’m glad yours came through it all. Your twisted version of staightforward was good for them I think.

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    3. Unfortunately, tim, I think divorce is very often the cause of such conflict. Putting the kids in a situation where they have to divide their love and loyalty to their parents, and even chose between them, is so grossly unfair. My sister has two kids who were seven and nine years old when she divorced her first husband. In their attempt to be fair to the kids, they decided to let them choose which parent they wanted to live with. The seven year old, Susie, chose my sister, which made Jimmi feel sorry for his dad, so he chose him. That turned out to not be a very happy solution as Jimmi’s dad soon acquired a live-in girlfriend with a son the same age as Jimmi, both of whom Jimmi didn’t get along with. Years and years of conflict ensued. When Jimmi’s dad died a few years ago in Tanzania, Jimmi refused to go to his funeral. I tried talking with him about it as I was very concerned that he might later regret that decision, but Jimmi was adamant, and didn’t go. He is now 45 years old, and to this day he harbors resentment that his parents left that difficult decision to their kids.

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      1. One of the hardest things I ever did was to NOT put my daughter in the position of choosing between her parents when we divorced. I was shocked at how strongly I was tempted to make Molly adore me and resent her mother. That’s just not me, and yet in the pain following the divorce I felt a burning desire to get Molly to validate me by rejecting her mother. I remember thinking that if I had this impulse, it must be just about universal, for that is not the person I try to be.

        In the end, I think I curbed that odious impulse. A kid only gets one father and one mother, and no kid should be forced to choose. My daughter had the courage and patience to restore her relationship with her mother, and Molly deserves great respect for being able to bring that off.

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  5. On a Mac, you can get an “Å” by using the option key along with the shift-a. Don’t know what the equivalent on a PC is…

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      1. Now that you mention it, this is a conflicting loyalties thing I’ve dealt with myself. My husband is, as you put it, an “Applehead”. So when my husband got me the latest and greatest iPhone (at that time) for Christmas a few years ago, he thought I would be the happiest woman on earth. After I started using it, though, I was underwhelmed. I have never been overly enamored of the iPhone – it annoyed me to deal with some of the restrictions I’d run into with videos and music. I used it for a couple of years but was constantly aggravated with the thing. My husband is one of Steve Jobs’ most loyal minions, and it got his back up whenever I would complain about that phone. He could not, for the life of him, understand why I didn’t love that phone as I love my own child. But last Christmas, he gave me the Android phone I’d wanted, since he finally and grudgingly realized I could not be converted to the Apple lifestyle. It must have pained him intensely to buy a phone anywhere else than in an Apple store, but he did it anyway. This is how I know he loves me. :)

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      2. My new computer is a Mac and I never had one before. I am managing to operate it more or less like I did my PC. I suppose over a fairly long period of time I will convert to being an applehead.

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  6. Rise and Shine Awl Jahl:

    Ah, there is nothing like participating in the life of a church over a long period to develop divided loyalties and territorial disputes. Usually I can spot these and avoid them with some artful dodging. However, several years ago the Queen of the Church Kitchen nailed me when I let my guard down. She declared the kitchen her own “Vatican City”, (Methodist version also within Eden Prairie), and herself the Pope (popette). There is another Church Queen who has declared another territory. These people feel free to trample over all other islands in the name of Jesus. They would make those storied Crusaders of the 1400-1600AD period proud.

    So my loyalties are divided. I often think those who practice Church Lady Aggression should stay with their own kind and fight it out to the death in the manner of the bloodiest street gang. And yet the positive aspects of church life have been a strong influence in my life over the years. There was a church of my childhood that was supportive and accepting towards me when my family had hard times.

    So is a church a place of petty tyrants and territoriality? Or a institution that provides support and nurture to those who are vulnerable and in need of care?

    May it is not either/or. Perhaps it is both/and.

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    1. Try being a pastor!! Every church has those ladies and men, but they fight over the boiler room and the snow blower. You often get people telling you not to offer support to someone, which is a fun moment.

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      1. As a little kid, I thought churches were an institution created by God. With a little experience of churches, I saw them as institutions run by people, riddled with all the contradictions and shortcomings of institutions created by people. It must require enormous patience to be a pastor!

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        1. This reminds me of the little kid who, when told by his parents upon entering a church for the first time, “Honey, this is God’s house” to which the boy said very loudly, “Well, where’s damnit?!”

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    2. Right now the proposed marriage amendment is the source of a great divide within many religious communities, and if you’re Catholic you have the additional conflict about contraception, and the Papal crackdown on uppity women within the church. Call me crazy, but if heaven is filled with people who hold these fundamentalist views, I have no desire to go there.

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      1. There will be room in the jungle beyond for all baboons. If I’m no longer inhibited by my fear of great heights, you’ll see me swinging in the tallest tree. :-)

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    3. I get that with committee stuff, pot, basketball football political dogooders, but I feel no qualms quitting those, I guess god is a little different.

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  7. Interesting stories, folks. I can’t remember many times in my life when my loyalties were divided. The first example that comes to mind involves times when my daughter did something that caused her mother, my erstwife, to blow up. Our best fights were about my daughter’s poor grades, and the roughest fight in the history of our family came when Molly got mediocre grades when she was a high school junior. When Kathe, my erstwife, discovered that Molly had not even been attending all her classes, she went ballistic.

    Moments like that were difficult for me. I think it is disrespectful and self-serving for one parent to play the Good Cop when the other parent is hollering and making wild threats. To the extent possible, parents should try to be on the same page when a kid has strayed seriously; to take entirely different lines then destroys the chance to teach a lesson. But what do you do when your spouse has totally lost control and is saying terrible things? When we had major disputes, I often thought my kid was being far more reasonable than my wife . . . and that was my most unpleasant experience of divided loyalties. My role was always to try to restore harmony without betraying my wife.

    Hard. It was hard.

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    1. I know what are talking about, Steve. It is difficult when you would like to take an approach that differs from your spouse regarding correcting children. Usually it is best to not say anything and let your spouse do what they think is right, but there are times when it is hard to this.

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      1. Yes, there are “times when it is hard” to keep quiet. Like when you think the spouse is out of line. And yet to undercut them is disrespectful and it has the potential to create more trouble down the line. In our family, I was a marshmallow with few definite standards. That’s not good for a kid. My spouse was a drill sergeant who was aggressive when displeased. The challenge was to find middle ground without undermining the spouse.

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        1. I seriously doubt, Steve, that you were a marshmallow, except perhaps by comparison, or that you lacked standards where standards really mattered. I probably have seemed marshmallow-like myself at times, but only because I recognize the limits of my power.
          Since I’ve been skeptical of authority for as long as I can remember and because authority requires the willing compliance of the subject of that authority, I doubt the effectiveness of authority as a persuasive tool. It never worked on me, so I was never able to pretend to wield it effectively. Fortunately, our girls always seemed to care a lot about our approval and so most of our discipline never got beyond an expression of disapproval. I always believed that the behavior you personally modeled was more effective that anything you could say, and tried to act accordingly.
          That’s not to say Robin and I never had differences in our parenting philosophy, but those differences were never as sharply different as you describe.

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  8. When married friends divorce it’s often difficult to maintain a good relationship with both spouses. In some cases it’s easier because you like one spouse better than the other and have no desire to maintain contact with the other. But if you like them equally, it takes time and effort to maintain a good relationship, especially if the breakup was facilitated by an affair. I have seen this happen several times in our circle of friends. You’re having your annual Midsummer Party, who do you invite? Both ex-spouses, including the new significant other? Or do you try to avoid conflict and invite only one? I know of more than one friendship that has slowly dissolved because of hard feelings or some perceived slight following a painful divorce.

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    1. This is a tough one, for sure. Since we don’t give many parties, we’d usually just maintain separate contact with each person, but over time one friendship usually prevailed over the other simply because it was a stronger bond. Friendships have their times and their reasons for being, I think, and sometimes they’re situational or timely and situations change. This doesn’t necessarily devalue a past friendship. It’s just that it’s time has come and gone and it was good and needed while it lasted.

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  9. When I divorced the father of my three kids after 10 years, there was a scene so sad that I still mist over when recalling it. It would be the last time he stood in the doorway before leaving to start his new life – something he was entirely opposed to. He cried; I said how sorry I was to hurt him; he walked out to the car to leave. As he opened the door, I saw a little blond-head pop up from the car’s backseat. It was 9-year old David, our firstborn. I wrested him from the car and asked him what he was doing, he said, “Mommy, you have three kids and Daddy doesn’t have any so it’s only fair that I go with him”. Heartbreaking even as I write this post. Unfortunately, my ex’s response to the rejection of divorce was to abandon our three kids for the better part of the remaining years of growing up. My two sons managed to elicit a few great male role models as surrogate fathers, but my daughter was left fatherless during those crucial years. It’s no accident that my sons have found soul mates who are perfect for them, but my daughter, single now with five kids, has only found narcissistic and unavailable men who are incapable of healthy relating.

    I think there’s no greater guilt than knowing how our decisions resulted in pain for our children.

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    1. That’s too bad, CB, because our children are always our children, aren’t they, no matter how old they are? Most of the decisions we make have ripple effects on our loved ones whether we take that into account or not. Talk about conflict, knowing that you need to make life changing decisions for yourself and knowing that innocent bystanders may be hurt — weighing one hurt against another. Life isn’t for sissies, that’s for sure.

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  10. We are a culture right now that sees a divided loyalty as a weakness, a fault. Either or, Black or White, my way or the highway, if you are not 100% with me then you are against me.
    My seven-year old grandson, Mr. Tuxedo, was listening to the news on their car radio yesterday (not MPR because, of course, they cannot get it there) when he heard a sound bite of Romney saying speaking harshly in a harsh voice about Obama. He was indignant that anyone would talk that way about the president. Then he thought about it and wondered why a radio station would put it on. Then deeper thought led him to conclude that the news should never include people talking that disrespectfully about anyone. The issue of singular point of view, one-issue politics, hating the other, etc. is all wrapped up the unwillingness to have divided loyalties, compromise, etc.

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    1. Wow, that kid sounds like a genius – not necessarily in the intellectual sense (though he well may be that) but in the emotional sense. True respect and true kindness are rare things, and it sounds like Mr. Tuxedo is further along that path than many so-called mature adults.

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  11. This post definitely resonates with me, Clyde. The polarization and head-to-head combat that defines our current government and public discourse makes me sadder and angrier than almost anything else that’s going on in our country right now. And the role that the media plays in supporting and encouraging that atmosphere is indefensible. But I will stop right here because I feel a rant coming on, and nobody needs that on a Saturday. :)

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    1. Like you I get angry and then I am just like them.
      I once served on a church council which was addressing an divisive issue. We agreed we would all end everything we said with “But I could be wrong.”

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      1. That’s a very good strategy for reducing conflict, and it infuses the discussion with some humility, a valuable trait which is sorely lacking in public debate these days. I think my anger is not so specific as the type that we usually see in the news – I am not directing it at one side of the spectrum or the other. I just feel like things in America are being hijacked, that it’s harder for rational people to be heard above the partisan din. That doesn’t feel right to me and it does get me upset.

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        1. Cool strategy. I once heard a couple interviewed who had been happily married for 60 years. When asked what their secret was, the husband admitted that he took a long look at himself in the mirror every morning and said out loud, “You’re no prize!”

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        2. I used to sell a book titled something like “What is it Like to Be Married to Me?”

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        3. I totally agree with you, Chris. We seem to be at the far end of a giant swing on the spectrum and I don’t like to think it will take another catastrophic conflict to bring people back to a rational centrist place in our public dialogue (if it can be called that lately). Even using the word “centrist” will ruffle some feathers, but my feeling is that we can’t live together in community if we don’t balance the personal with the collective in a way that benefits everyone, or at least takes everyone into account, especially those with no voice. I fear the corporate voice is overriding everyone else lately.

          That being said, it would be nice to believe that Baboons are above the fray, but after all I HAVE seen the entire Planet of the Apes series and we know how that turns out. Why is it that every generation has to reinvent the wheel over and over again?

          Jacque, maybe this is why we need helpers like you.

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        4. I think the talk about a division in the country with some people being too far to the right and some too far to the left is not right. I think true conservatives would not really want to associate with many of the people who are called conservatives today. The so called conservatives of today have no principles and just seem want to appeal the worst side of public. The liberals have given up most of their principles because they seem to be afraid the will lose out in the battle to win the favor of public that the so called conservatives seem to be winning over by appealing to their worst side. Hopefully we are seeing more people who are getting tired of this false division of the right and left and they are starting to deal with the real issues of our time.

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        5. It does sometimes feel like everybody is shifting more to the right – both conservatives and liberals. He who has the biggest bullhorn gets to call the tune, it seems, and the Republicans and their corporate donors have the best bullhorn money can buy. The lopsidedness is what bothers me. It’s not a balanced dialogue we’re having.

          If the make-up and the direction of our government now depends on who’s yelling the loudest, we’re in big trouble. Any expert will tell you that giving in to a kid who’s having a tantrum is a surefire way to ensure that the tantrums will continue and intensify. But here we all are, at the mercy of a bunch of people – grownup people, mind you – who get their way by holding their breath and stamping their feet. That’s not the way to get things done.

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  12. Nice to have you back, Dale. I can’t think of anyone else who would have come up with the Åland Islands could be like their love child, combining the best qualities of both, right? :)

    And I can see we should probably put “Awl Jahl” into the next glossary update.

    I’ve had to deal with several of the divided loyalty issues mentioned above:
    – being from Iowa, I usually have to mention that once the “Iowa jokes” start: What’s the best thing to come out of Iowa? I-35
    – split in Husband’s large family
    – different parenting styles

    I remember when Vin (who is “Nephew-Son” in my stories) lived with us for a couple of years when he was 11, for the first time I had to think about being fair when he and my son Joel (8) would get into spats. I tried hard to stay out of it and let them work it out, but I’m sure that, at times, I wasn’t as fair as I’d like to think. He is still like a son (and the source of some of the “grandbabies”), so it seemed to turn out ok.

    OT: If anyone is craving a performance of Carmina Burana, I’ll be singing in one on Sunday at 4 p.m.:
    http://www.mmxdesign.com/MissValleyOrch/
    And if you’re familiar with the music but not interested in going out in the heat, here’s a rather hilarious rendition of the opening number:
    http://www.wimp.com/ofortuna/
    Thanks, Lisa in Mpls. for the heads up about all this.

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  13. i am irish by heratage and by mentality and i used to hear about the conflict over there and not understand it. irish catholic against irish prods. what sense does that make. when it is rephased the repressed against the repressors it all makes sense. that is the right wing left wing showdown in a nutshell. we dont want to give them nothin vs we dont want them to take it all away and give more to their greedy old selves. when i got to visit ireland and saw how my people had their land taken from them, were forced to live in squalor while the lords used the lands as vegetable gardens and cattle storage facilities in spite of the starving masses under their watch. i am glad i was not gorwing up there then i would likely have been tempted by the ira. same reason i am a dem today

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  14. unravel divided loyalties?, shakespear and bernstien did a nice job of the hatfields and mccoys story on that in romeo and juliet and west side story didnt they, its a story as old as time. we can do a remake today with a tea party princess falling for a left wing do gooder because he is so kind and caring even though he will never be able to afford all the gems and cadillacs she has grown accustomed to.
    title?
    i have confidence in my baboons.

    song sleection?

    ive grown accustomed to his prius,

    all i want is a room somewhere far away from that hatefull stare,

    I like to be in America!
    O.K. by me in America!
    Ev’rything free in America
    For a small fee in America!

    more?

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    1. Had to think about this one for a while, but I have some ideas.

      Title – well, since our princess is moving from the Tea Party to the more liberal side of the spectrum, I would suggest Left Slide Story. And from there, I would remake the songs from West Side Story to fit our new musical:

      Instead of Tonight, it would be…
      The Right, The Right
      They always want to fight
      They like to yell until they get their way
      The Right, they might
      Not be so very bright
      They think that you can pray the gay away

      Instead of I Feel Pretty, it would be…
      I fell lib’ral
      Oh so lib’ral
      I feel giving, and caring and kind
      And I’m ready
      To leave all my greedy ways behind

      I’m for Pell Grants
      And gay marriage
      If you want me to wage peace, I will
      And I sure hope
      That my health care plan covers the Pill

      Instead of Somewhere, it would be…
      There’s a place for us
      Somewhere a place for us
      Where they don’t purge the voter rolls
      And tax rates aren’t unfair

      There’s a time for us
      Someday a time for us
      When they won’t bother with Fox News
      And Rupert Murdoch sings the blues
      Someday!

      …aaaaand, scene. :)

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      1. Yes, incredibly clever and fantastic. Of course, we don’t know how long it took you to write the lyrics but reading them gives the impression that you just did it off the top of your head.
        Is the Golden Banana a standing award or just created by Jacque for this occasion? Totally appropriate, either way.

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        1. Over the last two years I have given it by whim and whimsy for achievements above and beyond the Baboon Call of Duty. If I feel like it.

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      2. Thanks peeps – after I read tim’s comment, my brain started turning it over, and I guess it was mentally percolating in the background while I got some stuff done around the house this morning. By the time I had put the last load of laundry away, I had my musical!

        A Golden Banana…wow, I never thought I’d earn such a grand honor! I’d like to thank my family, my agent, my fans, and all the little people who I stepped on…erm, I mean, worked with and learned so much from over the years. I’ll cherish this award always! *sniffle* :)

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      3. When you’re a dem you’re a dem all the way
        And you pay for health care and you honor your gays

        I think if we act fast we can have some fun with this.
        Off broadway before the election and then a rewrite depending on if we win or get stomped in November

        Oh officer Romney we all must admit
        That every thing that leaves your mouth is pure total spit
        Or something like that.

        Congrats dub nice job
        I would be honored to cowrite this with you
        Let’s go.

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  15. sorry dub, the celtics are gone and the garnet pierce allen trio will be done. it was a nice run but the james wade bosh prime time studs beat the oldies but goodies in the run for the final. oklahoma vs the heat should be good.

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    1. I’m not crying about the result, far from it in fact. I have had a healthy respect for the Celtics since I watched their performance against the Lakers in the ’08 finals, which was probably the best NBA finals series I’ve seen in recent memory. But I did want the Heat to pull it off and they did in a big way. No complaints! OKC will be tough to beat – they’ve got a good team and they’re going to be better rested than our guys come Tuesday night – and I don’t know if we can make it out alive or not, but I hope we at least give them a run for their money.

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        1. One of my boys told me how much James is like magic Johnson who i love. I will try to look at him a little differently. It’s nice not to dislike everything on the planet. If I can pick em off one at a time I will.b N

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  16. Great posts today. I will be gone for a couple of days, driving to Grand Forks to drop daughter off at Girls State, where she will learn all about loyalties of the political sort.

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  17. Last year our super beloved choir director was in sort of a confused and depressed state though she never failed to do an excellent job conducting. This state was revealed by what came next. Her mother had recently died and her only son was in his last year of high school. She asked for a year’s leave of absence so she could focus on her son and get herself together.
    Our new minister discussed it with her quite a bit as she finally figured out what she wanted but decided that he couldn’t give her the year off.
    Much of the choir was upset by how it was handled and very sad to lose her (with the limited info that we could get because of privacy issues). Some left the choir, some left the church (in some cases, this was the tipping point as they were unhappy with other things).
    A new choir director was hired. His style and techniques were very different from his predecessor’s but he quickly became very popular and almost doubled the size of the choir.
    At the beginning, I felt very disloyal to old-director as I became fond of new-director.

    Today I went to the graduation open house for old-director’s above mentioned son. Quite a few choir members attended the party and it was wonderful to see her and her family. She has a new job directing a women’s chorus that meets on the same night as our choir rehearsals. She joked that she wasn’t recruiting us but she wouldn’t mind if we decided to join her.
    Now my loyalty to new-director is tested. Since it’s not really just loyalty to him but also to my choir community of 20 years I think I’ll stay where I am.

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    1. thats what dale was talking about. perfect example. sorry to hear you have to go through the agnst but there you are. the decisions we make on stuff like this is what we are made of. good luck.

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    2. That is a toughie, Lisa, but I can understand your reluctance to part ways with the group you’ve spent 20 years working with. Being put in a position like that is always fun, isn’t it? ;)

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  18. I thought of an interesting case of divided loyalties that probably would not happen today, or at least not very often. My maternal grandmother was raised a Methodist. A young minister assumed leadership over her church, but he did something that bugged higher authorities in the Methodist hierarchy. They fired him (that is the right phrase, I hope, not “defrocked” or something like that). The young minister migrated a few blocks to the Congregational church in town, taking with him half of his old congregation from the Methodist church. My grandmother was among them. I’m sure that was a choice that gave her fits and occasioned a lot of fervent praying.

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    1. Brilliant music and a fabulous performance :-) Good to see you Lisa. And thanks BiR. So glad I came; also to have finally met your mother after hearing about her all these years. She’s adorable.

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