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December 31, 2010

Big Changes in 2011

You already know that Barbara O'Neal is joining us. In January (or February -- your blogwerker is a little vague on the details) Joshilyn Jackson is getting tarted up, too. More exciting stuff. Stay tuned.

 

The Universe has seen the light and put the Book Tarts In Charge.

Of everything.
We have a few changes that we're going to be making in the global and national situations beginning immediately. And as long as we are making these big changes, we going to slip in a few personal items on the total tally.


Kathy Sweeney:
Mary Kathryn Rosina Reschini Sweeney is delighted to announce that she has been hand-picked to serve as Steward Queen of the Universe.  "I really don't have time for this," she stated, "but as usual, things are a freaking mess and someone has to fix them.  And I don't wear crowns.  They give me a headache.  You may, however, address me as 'Your Highness' and the next person to even think of a short joke is going to the dungeon."

Crown


As her first act as reigning Monarch, Ms. Sweeney plans to lower all the counters in all public areas so she can easily see what it going on back there.  In addition, all little people will get to sit in the front rows so no big blockhead obstructs their view.  Chocolate will now be required at all public meetings. In addition, she has already appointed royal guards to bring Dick Cheney in for a little game of Truth and Consequences.  She has no further comment at this time.

 

 

From Hank:
No more applause, please, no more applause. I am thrilled and gratified to have been appointed Minister of Food and Fashion. In that role, I am so delighted to announce the demise of fashion aristocracy that deems certain things "in" and "out", therefore requiring you to buy new "things." I am also delighted to reveal some new and exciting developments in the world of food.

Fashion_not

 
Fashion first. I hereby declare, as the Tart Minister of Fashion, that you can wear anything you want. Absolutely anything, and it will be considered fun and stylish and attractive. Skirt lengths, heel heights, you can choose, your call, its all about what makes you happy and comfortable. If you long for those Flashdance sweatshirts and leg warmers, no problem. If you liked the way shoulder pads made your waist look small, by all means, bring 'em out.
 
We at the ministry will also be happy to collect your unneeded and unused clothing and use it as an alternative fuel source: we understand platform shoes, ruched necklines, gaucho pants, micro-miniskirts, asymmetrical necklines and acrylic burn especially efficiently.  But I reiterate, if you love you some platforms, by all means, rock them. It's all good.
 
Giving to unused clothing to charity is also good, and will get you Tart Points™.
 
Now, as for nutrition. The item formerly known as "calories" has now been deemed not to exist. In fact, we here at the ministry declare all food is going to be categorized as "good for you" or "not."  You know what "good for you" means, tarts of the realm. So eat that. Yes, if Jamoca Almond Fudge seems "good"--then it is. Clearly is it not always "good." Use your best judgment, we trust you.

Fabio
 
Finally, as all of us in tart-land know, there are certain tenets and practices we all embrace. Love each other. Be kind. Be generous. Buy books. Laugh and laugh again. If you are in Iraq or Afghanistan, we love you and want you to come home soon, and safely. And be of good cheer--you never know what wonderful thing is just around the corner.
 
Happy New Year! 



Her, Margie:
Hi!  It's Me, Margie.  I guess you already know I am the unofficial goodwill ambassador for, well, lots of things.  But especially the Book Tarts because they tend to be cranky when their deadlines approach (as if no one else has ever had a deadline before or since puh-leeze) and lucky for them I am a constant smiling face in this office or they would never get anything repaired or delivered on time.  Just saying.

So they asked me to be a National Storyteller Lariat or something and I didn't even know you could talk about, you know, bondage, but I am working on some wonderful stories.  What?  Oh. It's Laureate.  Never mind.

Aurel_wreath

Elaine:
When I rule the world in 2011:
    US companies that outsource jobs to foreign countries will be heavily penalized and the money will be used to create jobs in the United States or for unemployment compensation and job retraining. Companies that hire U.S. citizens would be rewarded with tax credits and bonuses.
    The lenders who created the current mortgage crisis will be prosecuted as terrorists for their destruction of the American economy.
     Politicians will be expected to practice what they preach. Those who vote against health care will be required to pay for their own health insurance. Those who vote in favor of wars will be required to send their own sons, daughters and grandchildren to fight in the war for which they voted. Those who cut spending to public schools will be required to send their own children and grandchildren to public schools.
    Those who preach fiscal responsibility and practice it by denying help to the poor, the hungry and the schools will renounce all the perks and freebies that come with their jobs -- including free parking at Washington National Airport for members of Congress, free haircuts, subsidized meals at the House, Senate and Supreme Court cafeterias.

Image

   
    Elaine Viets will be elected National News Czar and reinstate the Fairness Doctrine.
    Any media outlet will be required to present news stories which are honest, equitable and balanced. All reporters will be required to check facts uttered by politicians and lobbyists and refute those facts if they are not true. This applies to both liberal and conservative media.
     Lobbying groups will once more be required to list the amount of their political donations and to whom they were given.
    Sarah Palin will be banned from the air waves until she has declared herself as a candidate for public office.
    The founder of WikiLeaks will be honored, along with Michael Moore and the soldier who gave the information. Using national security as an excuse for a cover up went out with Nixon. The press will also make a serious effort to discover whether Julian Assange is indeed guilty of rape and why a country which does little to prosecute its own crimes of rape went after him.
    Airport security will be revamped and personnel redistributed to provide more effective protection. We will study the methods of countries with successful airline security, including Israel, keeping in mind that those countries may have much smaller borders than ours. We will also protect our ports, which are mostly wide open.
    People who fly on private jets will be subject to the same security as those flying steerage.
   Fox News will not run continuously at hospitals, doctors' offices, bars and other public places. People in public waiting rooms will be allow to vote on their choice of station and will have the option of turning off the television so they can use their iPod, iPad, or enjoy silence.
 
     Personal wishes:
   Both my Dead-end Job and Josie Marcus Mystery Shopper series will top the bestseller charts and be optioned. Maggie Gyllenhaal will fight Sandra Bullock to play Josie Marcus. Sandra would lose the fight. As consolation, Sandra will play Helen Hawthorne in the movie.
  I will take more vacations and walks on the beach. When the end comes, no one ever wishes she'd spent more time at work.
Happy New Year,
Elaine
Sandra-bullock

 

And you? What honorific, epithet, rank, office, position will you take on to accomplish what goals in this next year?

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Bravo, all of you!

I will be Minister of Universal Access.

My first order of business will be to make Home Owner Associations subject to the ADA, in the same way that other groups are.

I will require that all books have an accessible format available to all who need one - not just the most popular books and not just for students who can prove they need one for a class they are enrolled in - because by the time that happens the course is long gone.

I will require all medical clinics to have at least one accessible examining table, and all hospitals to have accessible gurneys.

There will be an automatic penalty of life in prison to anyone who tells a wheelchair user, "If I had to be in a wheelchair, I'd commit suicide." Parole will be available, to all convicted of that offense, who use a wheelchair full time for a week while in prison- heh. A month will get release without probation. A year will get release with their record expunged, because after a few months you learn to overcome obstacles and realize that a wheelchair is a tool. The wheelchair is not the prison.

I'll take Special Advisor/Consultant:

No child will be harmed. In any way. Ever;

No dog or cat will ever go hungry, be abused, or know fear from a human;

No woman will ever be physically hurt (sorry, even I can't do anything about Emotional Stuff), but no woman will ever know being struck by a man, especially one who is supposed to care about her; same rule applies to The Ladies: No Hitting. Under any circumstances.

If you cannot control your drinking/drug use while driving a vehicle, We will do it for you. No more negotiations; have an accident while drunk or stoned, lose your license for one year. Get caught driving before that year is up, I'll personally speak with Elaine on your behalf and see if she'll approve Public Crucifixion.

Total and complete revamping of the current Legal System, with particular attention paid to No More Loopholes. If it's illegal in California, it'll be illegal in New York. Break the Law, take your lumps, no more sliding through the cracks.

I could go on (and on and on and on) but that's a good start....

Louder will no longer be the gauge of correct. Correct will be. You can be free to believe the President was born anywhere you want, as long as you keep it to your self and the black helicopters. Truth and accuracy will replace polls as news. Crime news for a given community cannot exceed the crime rate for said community. 1950's journalism will be regulated to the new TVLand/old news channel. (If it bleeds, it leads. Rapes, Fires and dog stories. Color weather radar. Bye bye.)

The leaders of religious orders that hide, block, cover up and otherwise hinder the criminal prosecution of crimes against children will be in prisioned until their chosen diety makes an in person appeal to the supreme ruler for their release.

Alas, I must over rule Sir William. "have an accident while drunk or stoned, lose your license for one year." You will be imprisoned for not less than 700 consecutive days. Any judge who decides you need less will be personally liable for any injuries caused.

So sayith the King.

Reine, Missouri has wheelchair accessible prison cells. Not, in our civil war era main prison, in one of the newer one.

BTW, I think Sandra Bullock looks more like how I picture Josie.

King Alan makes some good points, and I am open minded. A compromise on this issue could, I feel, be easily achieved.

P.S. Allison Janney as Helen Hawthorne! (Shoot me; I like tall and smart women with a sense of humor.)

I want to be Special Assistant to Elaine Viets.

If chosen for the job, my personal responsibilities might include helping her wipe the government clean of the special interest groups who are actually (in my own opinion, of course) running this country. And to get rid of the politicians who are there to serve only themselves (ie, great health benefits, terrific retirement plan, etc. etc. etc.) and not the country they were elected to serve.

Oh - and cell phones will be used for EMERGENCIES ONLY. Not to call your mother in the grocery store to tell her, at the top of your lungs, what you're buying and what you're planning on cooking for tonight's supper.

And the good news is, according to our Minister of Food and Fashion, I can do my job dressed however I want (even my flannel jammies??) while eating a hot dog smothered in everything. Yay Yay - Life if Good.

I bow to you awesome ladies - Tarts Rock!


I'd like to be Minister of Mimosas.

Thank you. Now everyone run off and administer yourself a Mimosa. Minister's orders.

I'd opt to be William's assistant, and extend the safety net to include battered spouses, no matter the gender and all animals...although I believe that was implied. And help with the "on and on" part of the list. There are so many.
In my spare time, I would be the Minister of Etiquette Re-training for Adults Who Need It. Rudeness and lack of consideration for others will not be tolerated. Offenders will be given a copy of The Common Sense Rules of Kindness and expected to pass a comprehensive test. Failure to do so, or repeat offenses, will result in suitable action (I'll still working on that, being a kind and considerate person myself, it is difficult)
I'd like to take on the Ministry of Vocabulary and Diction as well but don't know if I have the energy.

P.S. Happy and Safe New Year All! 2011 is bound to be a banner year!

Ooh, I'm so glad Joshilyn Jackson is joining the Tarts! What a great gift for the new year! Have a safe and happy new year!

I'll take the Vocabulary and Diction Ministry, Maryann! With special emphasis on my own pet peeves, the proper use of it's and you're, along with a Department Of Random Apostrophes For No Apparent Reason.

Geez, what's left? Okay, I'll be a minion, and help all the above royalty and ministers to implement and enforce all the above changes for the better.

And may I be Minister of Education? I would make sure every single child citizen is able to read before they start school, and to love books, reading and learning enough to keep all the above changes going. Funding military as much (or more, there's a big debate on this) as education is what got us into this predicament, but even worse is the lack of desire on the part of parents to lead their children to the well of knowledge.

In my spare time I'd also volunteer to lead trips to other countries. When less than a fifth of the citizens of a county even have a passport it's more likely they will not understand other cultures, even their own.

When I was reading all the different responses here I didn't let myself read who wrote them until the end. I got half of them right. :-)

If I may, I'd like to be appointed Pasha of the Picayune and Peculiar. (If not, I will still bow down before the Tart Overlords.) My first decree would be to outlaw the use of "me and [insert name/s here]" as the subject of a sentence. That would also be my second and third decree.

May I humbly suggest that Ruling Tart Elaine modify her stance on politicians and war? If a politician wants war, send the politician into battle, not his/her children, grandchildren or family dog. Wars should not be fought by the young on the bidding of the old -- that's just wrong.

And as Minister of Food and Fashion, Hank may want to outlaw spandex on certain persons. (Well, maybe allow them to continue wearing it in Wal-Mart. BUT NOWHERE ELSE!) And if she could allow Devil Dogs, Howard's Old English Picallili, Chelmsford Ginger Ale, and hot dog ROLLS (instead of just buns) to be sold in every grocery store in the country, this would just be a much happier place.

I shall be the Countess of Christmas Cards and nothing else. That gives me, like Mrs. Claus and her husband Santa, at least six month to nap, catch up on reading, and notice how adorable my children are. Also to explore new kinds of chocolate.

Oh, these are great. We're forming a fine government here. I'd like to have that old British title, "Minister Without Portfolio," and my role model would be that gutsy Danish foreign minister who refused to follow directions from home for as long as Denmark was occupied during the war. A freelancer, in other words.

Elaine, do we have to allow pj bottoms in public?

I'm not here to lobby for a government position--you've all got those covered. I just want to say that Hank definitely belongs on the cover of a romance novel--one of the steamy ones--with Fabio (or maybe his son since the F-man's getting a bit long in the tooth).

I'm claiming Minister of Media. Politicians, pundits, and anyone else considered a "go to" person for commentary can no longer speak in crafted sound bites but will have to say something of actual substance -- and back up the statements with true facts. I'm tired of people stretching the truth wider than what my butt pushes Spanx and selling fabrications as truth.

Stories about any entertainer's relapse, filandering, divorce, drunken rages, escapade with hooker, sex tape, relationship break-up, or cellulite outbreak will not rank higher for media spotlight than stories about people who really need our attention and help.

Journalists will forever more refrain from calling romance novels bodice rippers.

More dictates to come, but I'm on deadline. :-) Happy New Year!

I am not sure what position I would really like, but I am really glad that TLC is here and active and ALIVE!!

It's really kept me sane over this last month especially since my 21 yo daughter is making some life choices that aren't on the top of my (or her dad's) list of good ones.

She moved out in the middle of the day a couple of weeks ago with her 43 yo boyfriend (that she'd kept hidden from us all summer and fall -- that's the price for believing her and giving her freedom) Funny thing is that she is only across the street, but it's still an emotionally challenging situation.

I also want to celebrate the good things in life -- like husband getting a permanent job offer after being laid off two years ago, having both knees replaced, one shoulder fixed, and carpel tunnel repair on both wrists this past year.

I do agree with Nancy on the pj bottoms in public, but I will take loose and complete coverage over tight spandex that is stretched within an inch of it's life that barely covers the jiggly bits that should never been seen in public.

A toast to all for a safe, warm, and Happy 2011.

Kaye, jammies, absolutely. So sayeth I. And am weating them myself, come to think of it.

Jerry, consider it done.

Spandex--now, people, the Minster of F&F says--good judgement should reign. (Or, rein you in, if need be.)

Most honored Elaine, could you get Rene Russo for Charlie McNally?


DebraSue...you're a good and loving mom.

If I ruled the world everyday would be a day of fulfillment for my subjects.
I would summon muses to inspire artists and writers to continue in their quest for beauty.
I would encourage them to not give up and remind them that the fulfillment lies in the journey and if success is bestowed on them that that is a blessing, indeed.
Everyone, regardless of age would have a chance to reinvent themselves and reach the goals that they have set for themselves.
I would tell them to look inward for the questions and upward or outward for the answers.

I would wish a very Happy New Year to all.

I think I would like to be the Duchess of the Big Stick. My job would be to enforce these good and quite reasonable rules you've all made. If I might add one of my own - pajama bottoms are legal, but Pajama Jeans are not.

Nasty weather here possible tornado touchdown further south. Heading to the basement soon!

I'll volunteer to head up the Courtesy Police.

Hold that door open for the person behind you - doesn't matter who they are - be polite.

Thank you, please, your welcome - practice.

It is a merge lane - let them merge. But, it is a merge lane so don't be stupid and drive all the way down the closing lane and cut people off.

Turn your phone off - converse with the people at your table.

Take turns.

Wait your turn.

Cover your mouth.

Wash your hands.

People should have to take a test like at the DMV or something.

Use your manners people - the GOOD ones please.

Back upstairs now nasty weather has moved east. Damage in south & west St. Louis county but no injuries reported. Crazy temperature extremes so not surprised at the weather.

I agree with all the tarts decisions especially those dealing with violence directed toward any living being.

I would decree that all political ads be confined to a 2 week period immediately preceding the election. Anyone violating said decree would be barred from running for office or addressing any media for life. Running mean and nasty ads would result in immediate removal from contention.

Margaret Maron is having trouble with Mr. Typepad, here is her contribution:
Although it is an honor I would have gladly delegated to the last administration, I have reluctantly agreed to head up the Ministry of Transportation (Infrastructure Division) which has been so neglected of late. I will begin by diverting money from President Karzai’s pockets into our construction trades. Our bridges will be rebuilt, our tunnels will be inspected and maintained. Existing highways will be kept in good repair but I will not build more. Nor will I add any lanes to them except bicycle lanes. Instead, I will encourage light rail commuter trains and move on to laying down a modern passenger train system that will connect every state capital across the country. No longer will Oklahomans like Carolyn Hart have to drive several hours to Kansas to catch a train to the West Coast!

Thanks, Holly. And now that you posted for me, Mr. Typepad's decided to make nice.

Margaret, yes! Get to work on that asap, 'k?

I will be the Canadian Ambassador of Tartness. Since it turns out that all Canadians are NOT polite I shall be enforcing the Etiquette rules here as well. I shall campaign to have all computers stop telling me that I am spelling colour and neighbour incorrectly. I will also work diligently to make people understand that food allergies are not a choice and that yes, bread is made with wheat . . .

I will also endeavour to educate people to be more tolerant of vacationing choices, stop sneering at my love of Disney. Do I sneer at your choice to go all the way to the Cook Islands to bird watch!!

I bow to peoples choices of all things fashionable, except for jeggings, seriously, whose idea was that?

I shall take up the mantle of Lord High Judge of Fame & Infamy.

Firefighters, servicemen & women, good cops, hard working ordinary folks, moms, teachers, people who rescue animals...thou shalt be honored and paid well and get free parking anywhere.

Most politicians, all financial sector scumbags, heartless rich folks, halfwitted reality show "stars" and any pop star who would not have a career without AutoTune...thou shalt be condemned to working on chain gangs picking up litter and reclaiming polluted/ravaged lands. Also, no drugs, booze or fancy foods for you.

So have I spoken, so shall it be.

In the Chinese horoscope, the upcoming year is the Metal Rabbit, and is supposed to be one of uncommon prosperity. Since my birth year, 1951, is also Metal Rabbit, I'm looking forward to one hella year. Hope yours is, as well.

Popping a virtual cork for you all!

At a going away party many years ago, I was given a t-shirt proclaiming that I was galactic overlord. Since that was many years ago and was never challenged I will re-assume that title. I will order the galactic fleet to come to planet earth and provide backing for the Tarts and their logical and compassionate approach to governance. Also, everyone will be give a communicator so they can ask to be beamed anywhere they want to go. Unfortunately, due to some problems with physics involving the speed of light and such, it will take the fleet 43,000 years to get here. Can you hold on till then?

Have a very happy new year everyone!

Thanks, Hank (for fashion logic) and Elaine (for news and economic logic), and all for common sense applied to national goals . . .
I'd gladly assist the grammar police, but my true heart's desire would be to join Margie in storytelling -- is there room for us both, do you think, Margie? We do have quite different styles . . .
Last night, for example, I told for a sweet little cub scout troop -- darling and lively young men. Their leader thought Persephone would be too intense for them (so Margie might really feel stifled in that venue). They loved the paper-folding story best, I think . . . ;-)

As we grow closer to the beginning of a new year I would like to raise a virtual glass of good cheer to all the sweet and caring people of this blog.
We are blessed with passionate and aware people who know the important priorities in life.
I feel privileged to visit and read your inspiring wishes. Godspeed to all.

One more, the best fruitcake in the world was in my mailbox when I got back from the Y -- mailed by a friend in W.V. who makes it with her sisters. It's so good! My mom and I always shared fruitcake, and I'm sorry my mom didn't get to share this one (those Assumption Abbey people make a pretty good one, but it can't hold a candle to this).
A friend at the Y also gave me a slice of the cake she makes with her sisters.
I think we need a fruitcake czar (maybe Margaret Maron?) to make sure no more substandard fruitcake gets out there to mar the reputation of this food of the gods.
No coincidences: I just finished _Christmas Mourning_ today, with the fruitcake mantra "don't ask what (illegal beverage) it's been soaking in."
Wonderful book -- reminds me of . . . no, better not say; that could be a spoiler . . . let's just say, a certain play by a certain English playwright . . .
Happy New Year's everyone!

Alan, that's great. My Missouri prisoners will have equal access to practice their mobility skills and revel in the freedom and independence-giving joys of the wheelie life!

I want to be the Queen of Readers, that is people who read AND the devices on which they do so. I'm a reader (person, not device), and I support all and sundry citizens of whatever galatic universe contains anyone who reads.

So HAIL all citizen readers. Unite! Read TLC. Read magazines. Read comic books. Read hardbacks, paperbacks and NOOK. But read, my children. READ!!!

Thank you, thank you!
***bowing***

And HAPPY 2011, all you TLCers!

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