Monday, December 24, 2007

Happy Holidays from the Florescent Jungle

Every year, in lieu of a holiday party, the Florescent Jungle holds its annual holiday pot luck luncheon. It’s a day when the women in the office show off their culinary skills and the men show off the culinary skills of their wives, mothers or the local grocery store. This year’s feast included exotic treats such as mushroom pate, a lovely pineapple/Cool Whip/angel food cake concoction, ricotta pie and bags of Doritos and barbecue potato chips.

But the biggest treat was Bertha’s special spiked eggnog. On her weekly Costco trip, Bertha found frozen eggnog, which she combined with Island Stan’s beverage of choice, rum. The result was kind of like a root beer Popsicle if you removed the stick and mashed it up with too much liquor. You can imagine the trepidation of our HR Manager (who does God’s work) over the prospect of dealing with drunken employees acting more belligerent than usual on a Wednesday afternoon.

I found the spiked eggnog to be completely disgusting, however, several of my co-workers imbibed with great pleasure, including Steve and Island Stan. It took Island Stan several hours to realize that rum was available for consumption during office hours. I suspect he was still working off his rum buzz from the evening before and didn’t realize that something magical was happening right under his nose. Once the Old Joe clued him in, however, he went back for cup after cup.

The spiked eggnog was gone by the end of the day on Wednesday. However, there was so much food leftover that many members of the FJ team enjoyed lunch again yesterday, at their own risk, as someone had the bright idea to put many of the perishable items out around 7 am and leave them there for the remainder of the day.

The FJ is on Christmas vacation and will pick up again in 2008 with more tales of Trudy, Bertha, Island Stan and the gang. Happy Holidays and thanks for reading!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Kirk working with locals, including dems, to solve 10th CD problems while Dan and Jay offend and insult

Mark Kirk is working with local officials, including State Rep Elaine Nekritz (D) to help alleviate flooding problems in Lake County. From the Daily Herald:

A crowd of local, county, state and federal officials united this morning to renew support for a proposed forest preserve expansion in Buffalo Grove that could lead to flood-control efforts on the Des Plaines River.

The estimated $30 million project would add 250 acres of prairie and wetlands to the Buffalo Creek Forest Preserve, which actually is in Lake County on the north side of Lake-Cook Road at Arlington Heights Road. But U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk, state Rep. Elaine Nekritz and other proponents are passionate about the proposal because a reservoir included in the plan would allow the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to build a new levee on the Des Plaines River.

A similar levee nearing completion in Des Plaines helped fight flooding from the river in that city this past summer, officials said. The proponents gathered today in Kirk's Northbrook office hope the levee they seek would protect homes and businesses in Mount Prospect and Prospect Heights.

"We know that these projects work," said Nekritz, a Northbrook Democrat. "We know they can be successful."

Meanwhile, Jay Footlik offends the distict and Dan Seals insults us.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Seals loses teacher's union endorsement

Dan Seal's very bad day got even worse as the Illinois Federation of Teachers endorses Jay Footlik in the 10th CD democratic primary.

According to the Trib:
The state's largest teachers' union switched horses today in the 10th Congressional District Democratic primary.

Last year, the Illinois Federation of Teachers backed Dan Seals, who came close but lost to Republican U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk of Highland Park. This time, however, the
union is behind Seals’ primary opponent, Jay Footlik, in the Feb. 5
Democratic primary.

Dan got snippy when asked if he knew why the union switched endorsements:
Seals, who said IFT executive board members seemed “happy with all my positions” when he recently met with the group, said he had no idea why the IFT decided to endorse Footlik. “It’d be better to ask them,” he said.

He sure doesn't seem to be able to handle any pressure does he?

Hey Dan Seals - I'm not a millionaire and I live in the 10th.

Seals loses in first head to head match with Footlik.

I don't know if its arrogance, classism or further evidence of his lack of understanding about the 10th CD, but Dan Seal's comment at yesterday's Trib editorial board meeting was out of line. When asked why he still did not live in the district he wants to represent he replied:

"If I was a millionaire I could certainly just pick up and buy a new home, [but] I'm not a millionaire, and if you want more millionaires in Congress, I'm not your man," Seals said.

In 2005 the median value for homes in lake county was $271,700. (anybody know the stat for just the 10th? - I expect it is well under a million) (thanks anon!)

Note to Dan - snark and flippancy don't play well at the trib or with voters of the tenth and I think you will find once again that you are not our man for congress.

Read the full story of the Jay and Dan meeting at the trib here. Looks to me like Footlik has a shot at the Trib endorsement.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Love and Home Ownership in the Florescent Jungle

Bertha recently moved out on her own, after spending many years living at home. She bought a furnished house, next-door to her parents’ house. Don’t get me wrong – there’s nothing wrong with buying a furnished house. Buying a house is expensive, especially when you’ve only been saving do so for the better part of the last 15 years.

Now that Bertha has checked off home ownership on her list of things to do before she turns 40, she’s got a new goal in mind: finding a husband.

The other day, Bertha and I were chatting over a cup of coffee when, out of nowhere, she asked, “Where should I go to meet men?” A fair question, one perhaps better suited for a close girl friend and not a co-worker, especially one who writes a blog making fun of her co-workers, but I wanted to help nonetheless.

I suggested all of the obvious places – the gym, bars, church, various classes and volunteer opportunities, the dog park, public transportation, the Internet. She shot down every one of my suggestions. She doesn’t go to bars or to a gym. She doesn’t want to try Internet dating. She drives to work. No need for the dog park when she can just walk the dog around the block. And all of the guys at her church are either married or, she says, of questionable sexuality or moral standing.

So readers, let’s help Bertha find a man. Where would you suggest a successful, thirtysomething woman, who is involved in her church, loves dogs, domestic crafts and dramas on CBS look for a man?

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Hey Dan Seals – Voters worry about more than Iraq

From today’s USA Today:

In a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken Friday through Sunday, the Iraq war still tops the list of issues cited as most important. It's raised twice as often as the next-ranking issue, the economy. In April, however, the war was cited three times more than any other issue.

When domestic and economic concerns are combined, they are mentioned more often than the war, terrorism and foreign policy by 9 percentage points. That's the reverse of findings last spring, when the war-related issues were cited more often.

"When you see the news coverage, the war is improving; the surge is working," says Dorothy DeMasi, 65, of Hellertown, Pa., a Democrat who was among those polled. These days, she's more concerned about Americans being squeezed by the mortgage crisis. "Health care is another biggie," she says.

Read the full story here.

I think Mark Kirk has balanced his approach between domestic issues and the war in Iraq/foreign relations. Not so much the other candidates whose only issue seems to be the war. Do you think shifting voter concerns will cause any change in their campaign strategies?

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Why I'll never vote a straight party ticket again.

From today’s Daily Herald:
“A lack of timely and clear decision making in Springfield is hurting Lake County's attempts to keep and attract businesses, according to a recent status report.”

From the SouthtownStar:
“The legislative stalemate about education funding that has dragged on since summer has left officials in Illinois' 816 school districts wondering how long it will be before they get the additional money they were expecting, about $400 more per student.”

Metra, Pace and CTA still not funded.
Millions in federal dollars are not being leveraged.
Hundreds of thousands wasted in special sessions that accomplished nothing.
And Indiana is betting on an Illinois meltdown.

The governor goes to hockey games, legislative leaders bicker in the press, and the only bills getting passed are to proclaim that the first Tuesday in December be known as Cancer Survivor Beauty and Support Day for men, women and children who have survived cancer. A worthy cause, I’m sure – but how about a capital bill?

Wasn’t it supposed to be better with the Dems in control?