Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Marmite and other crazy ideas...

I've been racking* my brain, trying to remember what it is that Marmite looks like. It looks like...cold molasses...like...thick glue. It looks sticky. When you dig your knife into the jar and pull some out it doesn't want to let go of itself. It's got a slightly burnish red look to it. But it really looks just like something I've seen before; I just can't remember what it is.** Arrgh. It's driving me nuts.

As for what it tastes like...well. Salt. And something hinting at metal. I didn't shudder...not bodily, anyway. But my mouth and tongue did all they could to get rid of the Marmite once they were assaulted by it. And nothing could overcome the unpleasant aftertaste. Not Diet Coke. Not dark chocolates. It was just something I had to live through.

I gave it two bites. And I should probably try it again. But my stomach revolts at the thought, so don't hold your breath.

*It's "racking," after the torture device; means to torture yourself. Not "wracking," which is related to the word "wreck." These are the things you learn when you obsess over words.

It's been a crazy week. Here's what's been on my mind:

NFL Quarterbacks. They used to look like my dad. Old guys. In fact, back in the day, the other girls said my dad looked like Joe Namath.* He didn't. He was cuter than Joe Namath. But still, you're getting what I'm saying, right? Then, at some point, they got hot. After a while, they looked like they could be my sons, so it wasn't cool that they might be hot. And now, they look like children. I'm wondering if, when I'm ninety, they're going to look like they're twelve.

*Maybe it's wasn't Joe Namath. Maybe it was Bert Reynolds. (Especially in his bushy mustache phase.) Maybe it was both; I don't remember. I just know that some of my friends thought my dad was cute. 

Have you seen this commercial?*

Explain to me why this is okay and not creepy? If it was old men, and a young, sexy woman, feminists would be freaking out, wouldn't they? I think they would. But these lustful old bats making a young man uncomfortable with their sexual innuendo...that's just okay, I guess. It creeps me out.

*For when the ad is no longer available and I don't figure it out for months and months and have to find a new link, it's the VW ad (and others like it) featuring a trio of old ladies coming on to a young car salesman. 

Okay, so here are two things I really just do not get.

One. The Wounded Warrior Project. I don't get it. I don't understand why people in the military, especially those who are wounded, need donations from the general population. The military is supposed to be "service" to our country. It's all supposed to be paid for with our tax dollars. Isn't it? People who are in the service get a free college education. I'm pretty sure their kids get it, too.* So why am I paying for free college for them all, but there isn't enough money for the wounded? What the hell is going on?

Azog statue by William Tung via Flickr
*[update 09/24/2015] See the comments about the whole free education thing that I thought the military was given. I am so clueless!

One A. I don't get why we are calling them "warriors." It's so barbaric. Archaic. Violent. Makes us sound like crazed madmen always starting wars and sending in our WARRIORS! I guess it fits. Still. Wouldn't it be more respectful to call them service men and women? I know, I know; people don't like the whole gender thing. And we can't dare call them all servicemen because that's just not fair to the women, even though the word "men" is right there in the word "women." And even though we could all just be men. I mean, why not? Maybe we should start saying servicewomen and say that includes men and women, which it does. How would the guys feel about that? Do we care? Anyway, there ought to be a better word than WARRIOR! which makes me think of an orc in a loincloth with a giant ax. I wouldn't want to be a WARRIOR! I'd want to be a peacekeeper, or something like that. But that would be laughable. That would be like the Patriot Act, which isn't really all that patriotic. And the Defense of Marriage Act that did nothing of the kind.

Two. I don't understand why some schools are better than others. Honestly. I don't get why, when you want to buy a house, you need to check out the school that your kids will be going to. I don't understand why poorer neighborhoods have worse schools than wealthier neighborhoods. Aren't public schools supposed to be financed by our tax dollars? Shouldn't those tax dollars be spread out completely evenly? I don't get it. If we're going to have public education, your kid ought to be able to go into any public school and have the exact same experience as in any other. Same quality of textbooks, same standards of teachers and curricula. What the hell is going on in this country?

That's it for the things that I don't get lately.

**I'VE GOT IT! I remember! Marmite reminds me of this sticky stuff that comes in a tube that I once fed to a rat. That's right. A rat. You squeeze it out onto your finger and the rat licks it off. Either that's what Marmite reminds me of, or I've gone completely off my rocker.

All right. Back to work.


  1. Hi Dianna: Many of your soon to be in-laws including myself are veterans (a few highly decorated veterans too) so I know from whence I speak. Myself and two other that are still alive are disabled veterans (one which is 33 and she has 2 young children) and another a Purple Heart recipient. Military people do not get a free college education and neither do their children. I did refrain from laughing when I read that, I'll let ya know. Once upon a time, a long time ago, there was a thing called the "GI Bill" that did provide college educations only to the veteran. That ended in the 1970s. There has been a program where military members can put money away if they could afford it and the military will match it and that money is used to pay for the military or veteran's education since then. Most military members pay is below the poverty level their first four years of 'service'. Kathryn did not have any of her college paid for because her parents were veterans. Now and there always has been, a program that if you agree to serve in the military as an officer for a certain number of years (I believe six), you can have your BA degree paid for, but you must spend your summers during that time while in school working for the military too (at least that is how it used to work). The cost of care at VA clinics and hospitals to the veteran is income based, i.e. based upon the income of the ENTIRE household. My care at the Viera VA clinic is not free. Only those injured in Afghanistan, Iran and Iraq have a total free medical ride regardless of household income right now. There are still some WWII, and many Vietnam Vets and Cold War vets who have needs they can not pay for that entities like Wounded Warrior Project help with. Wounded Warrior Project does many other things as well, I was just providing an example of where they can be of need and useful. Anyway, no offense taken, just thought I would educate you on how the military 'education benefits' work.

  2. Maybe it reminds you of furball medicine that comes in a tube for cats.

  3. Well, that just makes it even worse! I don't understand why they aren't taken care of better. My original point wasn't meant as a complaint, but confusion as to why the military aren't supported better by our tax dollars. I thought if we can give them free educations, why on earth can't we give them better medical care. But now...we're not even giving them education? I don't get it.

    But, I still think the word "warrior" is weird. :)