Motley Moose – Archive

Since 2008 – Progress Through Politics

Archive for August 2009

My Iran

In the fall of 1974 when I was ten years old, my family moved to Tehran, Iran. My parents were teachers and wanted to travel, so they signed up with International School Services, a placement service for international schools, and we chose the Tehran American School (TAS).

Prior to moving to Iran, my father was an assistant professor at Denver University, my mother taught 5th grade at North Lakewood Elementary, and we lived in a nice suburban ranch house in Lakewood, Colorado. Mom went ahead of us to find a house and get us settled. She did not have much choice, as my father got sick that summer and had surgery to remove his gall bladder. Mom was very brave.

I remember the flight over was very long. I think it took a day or more with layovers and such. When we deplaned at Mehrabad Airport, I was struck with massive culture shock, as everything was different than anything I had ever seen before. The most shocking thing to me, was the sight of women clad from head to toe in black chadors.

In 1974, the chador was not mandatory and in fact, the Shah was trying to get rid of them. Since 1979, things are different.

I am not sure how long it took to adjust to living in Iran. We had little bits of the States. TAS had over 4.000 students and around 50,000 Americans made Tehran their home. We were very fortunate in that we were stateside hire, meaning we had military privileges such as the commissary and PX (military supplied American shopping goods) and base access. These small benefits made living in Iran easier.  

We Must Fill the Void Ourselves


The topic below was originally posted on my blog, the Intrepid Liberal Journal.

Like millions of my fellow citizens, I am reflecting after the death of Ted Kennedy. Death is an egocentric experience for the survivors. Indeed, rituals such as funerals, wakes or in the Jewish religion “sitting Shiva,” is really about nurturing the souls of those left behind. That is also true when it is a public figure or celebrity that has died. We may never have met them or knew them yet they touched us nonetheless. The Kennedy family understands this better than anyone and is well practiced in rituals that not only honor the dead but comfort the living.

Oh Canada…

I was watching Dr. Robert Ouellet, the President of the Canadian Medical Association, on C-Span’s Morning Edition as he took calls and questions on Canada’s single-payer system. The most important thing he did was blow holes in the myths which are being actively promoted by the Right-wing health opponents. I wish everyone could be watching or listening to this and, if as is the case on Sundays, C-Span reruns this morning’s program on C-Span 3 in the afternoon, then it would be worth catching it and listening.


True (Moral) Compass

This week has been an eye opener for this lifelong Democrat. The passing of Senator Ted Kennedy has suddenly focused our collective attention on the astonishing professional and personal life of this extraordinary man. I am not much for watching news of the deaths of public figures, but have been transfixed with my television these past few days.

I am not such an innocent, as to be unaware of the faults of Senator Kennedy. One would have had to live under a rock, to be completely ignorant of the terrible stories told about Ted Kennedy. Chappaquiddick, recklessness, drinking, and arrogance were but a few of the poison daggers held against Senator Kennedy.

Even a staunch Democrat like me was angry with him for the 1980 election.


Four years ago I can say, without cliche, my life changed.

I lived in Ocean Springs, MS at the time, just to the east of Biloxi.  I went to school in Gulfport just to the west of Biloxi.  I traveled US 90 almost on a daily basis.  I knew the area, having lived there twice actually (long story), very well.  Highway 90 follows the Gulf Coast beach.  It is one of only two ways to go East/West along the southern portion of Mississippi.  Don’t take Highway 90 if you’re in a hurry, though.  Oy.  Tourists and stop lights.

We had just started the new semester; I recall that we had one or two days of class.  Of course, we were all trying to figure out which path Katrina would take while making plans to stay in town or bug out.  I had pretty well decided to stay.  Of all the excuses I could come up with none is truer than that I just wanted to know what a hurricane was like.  The sick cat and old car were considerations but merely convenient excuses if the truth is really told.

I sincerely thought that we’d have a couple of days of inconvenience and then everything would be back to normal.  I remember that The Constant Gardener with Ralph Fiennes was due out the following Thursday.  Since I love Mr. Fiennes I was all gung-ho to see that movie.  No, I still haven’t seen it.

Thursday August 27, 2009. **Warning! Sensitive individuals may find tube content offensive due to

My thoughts have turned to zombie movies lately.

I am not much of one for funerals, as I prefer to celebrate the life that was. I thought I should do another serious tube diary in honor of Teddy, but instead realized the best thing I could do was get back to shredding pugs.

As for zombies, I was reminded last night of one of my favorite movie songs ever, Richard Cheese’s version of Down With the Sickness from the 2004 remake of Dawn of the Dead . I would encourage everyone to watch this movie as soon as possible. I wish I could post the movie clip with the song, but this will have to do for now. Thank you Happy Tree Friends and whoever made this tube.

Why zombies you ask? Well I was struck by the perfection of that song for Sricki’s evil professor, and then moved on in typical Hollede fashion to realizing how much people like Dr *** are like zombies.


Now play both at the same time and watch and listen to the town hall meeting. Hit replay as the song ends, and it fits the meeting to perfection.

OMG (updated with USSS comin' a knockin')

I can’t take much more of this.  I really can’t.  As much as I despise George Bush, Dick Cheney, George Tenet, and Donald Rumsfeld for their policies, I truly would never wish (or pray) for their deaths.  I would never sit in a church that prayed for them to die.

But surely, you think, there isn’t a church in this country where such a thing could happen.

Yeah, well…