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State of the Blog

Your Humble Blogger is down to two wisdom teeth. The oral surgeon pointed out that the teeth don’t hold up to a cost-benefit analysis: you still have to brush them and floss them and maintain them, but they don’t really help you chew. This may be true, but the marginal cost of maintaining the teeth (assuming you are brushing the ones next to them anyway) seems pretty small, while the cost of removing them seems pretty big. Not just the monetary cost, which has got to be a big chunk of the premium money on top of a hefty co-payment, but the cost in time and agita. We needed a babysitter for the time I was in surgery, and then more babysitting for the rest of the day, since I was not really capable of looking after children, or other responsible tasks such as wiping drool off my chin. Still, thirty hours or so later, I’m back to what we laughingly refer to as normal, with the added excitement of trying to restrain myself from playing around with my tongue and the sutures.

It’s like that thing where you tie a knot in a cherry stem with your tongue. Only a lot less sexy.

Anyway, what with houseguests, Thanksgiving, and oral surgery, I’m afraid the blog has been on the back proverbial for a week or more. Which is probably fine; I wrote 41 entries in November and 41 in October, which I think is a two-month record. And both months topped a hundred comments, which makes YHB very happy, particularly after whinging so much about the summer.

As for December, well, I’m expecting to continue the Pirke Avot series, and there’s the imperative to catch up with Book Reports by New Year’s Eve, so that in January I can write my Year in Books. I’m not sure if I’ll continue my Music Mondays; I like the idea of them, even if the actual notes haven’t been up to that idea. And in January, I’m hoping for a few posts on a theatrical topic that I am not ready to start just yet. And I imagine things will come to me.

Still, if there is anything any Gentle Reader would like me to rant about or comment on, sock it to me.

Tolerabimus quod tolerare debemus,


Sympathies on the wisdom teeth. I won't regale you with my own horror stories; suffice it to say that, aggravating though it may be, it could be worse.

I find that, when the dentists start talking about "habituating" and won't give me any more Percoset, the best remedy for mouth pain is ibuprofen combined with scotch. YMMV.

At some point I'd love a couple lines of your thoughts about each of the cabinet picks. Also what else we should be looking for to try to predict whether Obama is going to be as awesome as I think.

…whether Obama is going to be as awesome as I think…

Short answer: he is not. He is going to be President of the United States of America. He tastes good with butterscotch topping, and he will pick up your drycleaning, but you are still going to be disappointed.

My father at one point, when we were kvetching about Felipe Alou, pointed out that any baseball fan is going to be aggravated with his team's manager. Six times a week or so, he's going to put a lineup together, manage the game, and do a bunch of interviews. In addition to a gazillion decisions that we can look at and weigh in our minds, together with knowing how they turned out and having loads of time to analyze them, there are the infinite number of decisions not made, the consequences of which we can just make up. Even if on the whole you like the manager, a couple of times a week you are going to blame him for taking a pitcher out, or leaving him in, or saying something dumb to the reporters, or not saying something brilliant to the reporters, or not noticing that your shortstop was favoring his left foot, or whatever happens to catch your eye.

The thing is, the Presidency is like that, only when you fuck up, people die.

I will say, he's off to a good start for somebody expecting to actually do his job, day by day. For a guy with a resume that's a bit light, comparatively, he sure looks like he understands what the President is supposed to do.

Thanks (and the mouth is surprisingly fine—my surgeon seems to have been very good indeed),

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