Doggy trim: Terri’s winter coat has become long, wiry, and messy. It seems like such a hassle and expense to go to a real dog groomer, so I spend an interesting half hour on the mirpeset armed with brush, comb, Furminator, and a pair of scissors. Yes, I understand the difference between a top coat and an undercoat. But in this climate and this type of dog, it is immaterial. It isn’t the most artistic job, but I manage to trim off enough hair to fill a small bag. Terri is now much softer to the touch (and she smells better, too). My little sweetie-pie sits quietly during the whole procedure. (From her perspective, she is just getting a long session of attention and patting, but I am still grateful that she is so well-behaved.) Here’s the results:
Business as usual: Hamas has gone back to firing rockets at us and increasing their tunnel activity. The entire Gaza War did little more than put a dent in their smuggling activities. Weapons are still pouring into Gaza, supplied by Syria and Iran, funding by other Arab countries. We’ll see if Mitchell’s visit will help.
Ballot blues: Yes, it is election time again. Once again, the nation suffers from Electile Dysfunction (the inability to get excited about any of the candidates). Don’t know who to vote for? Try this Knesset party quiz to see which party is closest to your beliefs. Two depressing things about it: first, it comes from the Netherlands, a country that has been increasingly outspoken in their anti-Israel stance; second, I couldn’t get closer than a 75% match to any party. Sigh! I might have to start my own. Anyone interested in starting a Pissed-off Anglo lo dati v’lo hiloni l’gamrei Environmentally Conscious Wanting Peace but not Ready to Lie Down and Die Party, let’s meet.
Spring has sprung: It is a mild, beautiful spring day but it is hard to enjoy it knowing that this is the driest January on record and we desperately need the rain. Terri doesn’t understand climate change and environmental crises, though, so she frisks along happily, eating the tender green shoots and ogling the birds. A herd of goats pass by, and Terri practically swoons with pleasure at their smell. The goatherd is talking to them the way I talk to Terri (albeit in Arabic); he seems to be chatting pleasantly with them. They make these delightful blatting sounds, plus you can hear them munching from 20 meters. Sometimes the goats are “parked” outside my apartment in the empty lot right next to the parking lot. The sound of them grazing and blatting is lovely.
FBI discloses new suspects: Who was responsible for causing the plane to crash into the Hudson river? Hat tip and naughty sniggers to Central LS.
“Dash” from Dash: I’ve been on the edge of being sick for the past few weeks. Terri has done her best to keep me healthy. (She believes that generous applications of dog slobber can cure anything.) But I feel worse. Blech. But Terri lets me sleep in very, very late this morning (thanks, Miss Doggy!), so it is late morning when we head out on our first walk of the day. The sun is shining through a layer of mist; the wadi is green and fresh; the birds are singing; the shefan selah are sunning themselves on rocks. We sit for a while on a large boulder and gaze out at the green hills. Suddenly, I see what appears to be a black bear plodding slowly towards us. It’s Dash, one of Terri’s doggy friends. Dash’s human insists that Dash is a purebred black Lab, but I think there is something else in the mix, like pony or moose. Dash carries his massive bulk ponderously, lumbering along while Terri joyfully runs circles around him. When we stop for a bit, Terri settles down and happily gnaws on Dash’s ear. She turns and grins at me, as if to say, “Life is good!”
Sometimes the surgeon goofs: Even our excellent intel is bound to slip up once in a while. This morning, IDF shells UN headquarters in Gaza. UN officials are pissed off. Gee, I wonder if they are now going to do something different, like condemn us? Oh, wait…
The goal: We are trying to stop missiles and rockets from being fired from within Gaza. We are not trying to wipe out the population. You only have to look at the stats to see that we are targeting military sites, which is damn impressive considering that Hamas likes using human shields and hiding their launchers in mosques, hospitals, schools, and apartment buildings.
A few things to consider: Others have said it first and say it better than I could:
Melanie Phillips has a few lucid things to say about the history of this an the Hamas response.
Emanual Shilo talks about the rationale behind the move to ban two Arab parties from the next elections, saying, “Despite the claims of discrimination which they commonly make, there is no denying that Israeli Arabs enjoy the advantages of living under Israel’s democracy without being asked to bear the price of its existence in terms of putting their lives on the line. They do not die on the battlefield like the Jews or the Druze, and they vehemently oppose the notion of civil service within their own communities. As opposed to most Israeli citizens, they are also not a target for terror attacks. Therefore, they continue to smear Israel’s democracy while at the same time firmly objecting to any proposal that would see even one of their villages within Israel being transferred to the Palestinian Authority’s control.”
While Tel Aviv and the Shalom Achshav crowd wail, other cities, including those with high Arab populations, seem less outraged. All this will be for nothing if we can’t get Hamas to agree to a real truce.
Nadine post-mortem: Poor baby was riddled with tumors (probably cancer), had a weakened heart, fluid in her lungs, and a nearly-dead liver. She had clearly replaced her immune system with sheer cranky orneriness. I miss my Bed Lump. Thanks to readers who posted messages; you are all welcome to add your farewells to Miss Thing.