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The Elephant Woman: She’s a Large Mammal!

June 25, 2005 | By | No Comments

Shazam! I woke up this morning to discover I had become a Large Mammal.


(From Population: 3

A Comedy Theatre Troupe)

Just call me the Elephant Woman!

Some of you may remember the excitement around here when I moved up to become a Marauding Marsupial. Others of you are saying: Mammals, Marsupials. . .What?? Has she lost her mind?

N.Z. Bear, over at The Truth Laid Bear, ranks blogs by the number of links other bloggers have given them. The TTLB Ecosystem starts out at Insignificant Microbe and travels up the food chain to Higher Beings.

So this is a really fun milestone here at Reasoned Audacity and . . .

I Thank You!

However you made your way here to this site, I’m grateful for your time. I’m doubly grateful for those of you who have made my day with your kind comments and emails — and those links.

Do keep coming back!

I want to say a special thank you to the Ladies of The Cotillion! A quick check of Technorati confirms my happy suspicion that you gals put me over the top.


Updated July 14: Kevin Drum at The Washingon Monthly has an interesting reading list,

…the women I read are considerably more liberal and considerably more anti-Bush than the guys.

20 Jun



In Pursuit of Princes: Happy Father’s Day

June 20, 2005 | By | 5 Comments

Monday morning . . . bumping this Father’s Day post from Friday to the top of the page. I’ve also added more links below . . . Hope you had a good weekend, and Happy Father’s Day! More later.

* * *


My prince and his boy

I have a Father’s Day piece up today over at the Independent Women’s Forum site. Here’s how it begins:

In Pursuit of Princes

I wonder how long it will be before Father’s Day is relegated to the remainder bin of history.

Ironically, when the end of fatherhood is written, the title will be: In Pursuit of Pleasure. Gay and defiant, confident in its indictment of the patriarchy, the culture dances unheedingly away with the playboy replacement. The arbiters of cool nod approvingly; the guardians of the gifted grant their blessing.

When midnight strikes, she wakes up alone. A baby cries. Full consciousness reveals no prince. No slipper. Only shards of glass mark her broken dreams.

Sadly, this is no apocalyptic vision of some dystopic future. It is today’s reality for many women and their children. Father’s Day may still have some kick to it: this weekend, cards will be bought; burgers will be charred on the barbecue. Meanwhile, our culture is dancing with the drummer…and relentlessly undermining the very heart of fatherhood. . . .

Read the rest over at Independent Women’s Forum!

And Happy Father’s Day.

To the thoughtful Princes at Mudville Gazette writing on Open Post.

Thank you to James Joyner controlling traffic, if not culture Outside the Beltway with quality contributors on Beltway Traffic Jam.

See alternative thoughts and lifestyles at Shakespeare’s Sister on Friday BlogRolling.

Update: Read more from the vast right wing on My Vast Right Wing Conspiracy and good writing at Weekend Open Trackbacks

Thank you for a wiz-bang good blog at Wizbang with Carnival of the Trackbacks XVI

Salute to Dad lifting up his son on 365 and a Wakeup, see Happy Father’s Day

Little BlackFive scores on Happy Father’s Day

Pro-Life Blogs has a link to remind us about fathers and their aborted children at Father’s Day 2005 – 48 Million Killed

IMAO has (a funny) (or maybe not) (or is it?) Happy Father’s Day (somebody let me know).

Welcome Readers

June 18, 2005 | By | No Comments


Thank you for clicking through to the Independent Women’s Forum and to Reasoned Audacity. It is an honor to have you visit.

Family Governance 101: Children of the World, Unite!

June 17, 2005 | By | No Comments

We were all headed out in the Black Rocket. I was reviewing with the Penta-Posse what they could expect from the day.

Some of the details were not received with enthusiasm.


Anarchists. Clearly.

Election Night 2004

The Dreamer decided she had some better ideas, and offered them. In a tone of voice which was, shall we say, ill-advised.

“And what,” said I, “makes you think [the part she didn’t want to do] is up for discussion?”

“I was just trying to offer a compromise,” she replied. (Still with the ‘tude.)

“Well,” I responded, “This isn’t a democracy.” (Okay, so that was a little snarky. . .)

Jack decided to clarify: “No, this is a benign dictatorship.”

Then, from the far back, the Dude (lovin’ the fact that his sister was in trouble) chimes in:

“No, this is ANARCHY!”

09 Jun



Thank Heaven for Little Girls: Congrats to George and Jeffrey

June 9, 2005 | By | 2 Comments


Thank heaven for little girls

for little girls get bigger every day!

Thank heaven for little girls

they grow up in the most delightful way!

Those little eyes so helpless and appealing

one day will flash and send you crashin’ thru the ceilin’. . .

* * *


George Stephanopoulos

and Ali Wentworth

Credit: Andrea Renault/Globe

Shortly after she became engaged to George Stephanopoulos, Alexandra, “Ali” Wentworth and I were riding the elevator up to tape Politically Incorrect. George was, at the time, one of Washington’s most eligible bachelors, so the engagement was a Big Deal here in the Nation’s Capital. Just to make conversation, I asked Ali if it was weird for her personal happiness to be such a big media event.

She looked at me quizzically, shrugged, and replied: “Well, it would have been the same if I’d married a rock star.”

Oh. Right.

Well huzzah for high expectations. She was actually quite pleasant, so I’m glad to see that my cynically low expectations for their union appear ill-founded. The Big News now is the arrival of a new Stephanopoulos: their second daugher, Harper.

You can read all about it at the Celebrity Baby Blog, which is a hoot. But they missed the news of another important recent baby girl arrival, blog baby: Caitlyn King!


Caitlyn King

But she’s a celebrity here: look at that cute face. Caitlyn is the daughter of Jeffrey King at [defunct blog]Three Fingers. Daddy and daughter and mom are doing fine.

The years go by too fast . . . we’re thanking heaven for our first baby girl, who turned twelve this week. Before you know it, you turn around, and they look like this. . .Happy Birthday, baby, I love you.


My sweet Dreamer

Photo credit: Helena Yoest

So Congratulations George and Jeffrey! And welcome Harper and Caitlyn.

While I am all teary over my baby girl’s birthday, my husband, Jack is gearing up for battle with the boys. He insists I send along to you new fathers his battle-plan — W. Bruce Cameron’s 8 Rules for Dating my Teenage Daughter, a must-read for every dad with a daughter. He thinks you might want to keep it handy. . .

W. Bruce Cameron’s Rules

Rule One: If you pull into my driveway and honk you’d better be delivering a package, because you’re sure as heck not picking anything up.

Rule Two: You do not touch my daughter in front of me. You may glance at her, so long as you do not peer at anything below her neck. If you cannot keep your eyes or hands off of my daughter’s body, I will remove them.

Thank you to Mudville Gazette for Open Post

(** And if this trackback belongs to you:», please contact me: I owe you a link! **)

Update: Thanks to Wizbang with Carnival of the Trackbacks XV for helping to celebrate.

Update: Big Congratulations for another girl-baby blogger! June 6th, 2005 “BORN” Lillianne Grace Ransom. Newport Beach, CA. 8 pounds, three ounces. Posted by Greg Ransom at PrestoPundit, alerted byMusing Minds at Congratulations to the Ransoms

The world is a better place.

28 June 2005, Up Date on another baby girl alerted by Marla Swoffer.

Read More

03 Jun



Arlington National Cemetery, John Wesley Yoest, USN, BMCS

June 3, 2005 | By | 7 Comments

Every time we’ve made the left turn onto Eisenhower Drive, and passed through the imposing brick gates of Arlington National Cemetery, I’ve been overwhelmed with emotion. Family members of those buried at Arlington National Cemetery are given a special pass and may drive onto the Hallowed Grounds to visit the grave of their loved one. It’s an enormous honor which makes me feel humbled.


The Penta-Posse

at Arlington National Cemetery

My husband’s father served thirty years in the United States Navy, and died the year I married into the family, so I didn’t know him well. And the fact is, after a lifetime of nine-month Mediterranean tours, wars, and rumors of war, there is a lot my husband doesn’t know as well.

However, over the 15 years that we’ve been married, I have gotten to know my mother-in-law well. She doesn’t talk either about the sacrifices she made, but there is one story that she has told me several times.

Once, when my father-in-law was out on tour, and she was home with three small children, the car broke down and, of course, she had to take care of it. My husband marched up and said, “Don’t worry, Mom, I’ll fix it.” He was about five years old at the time.

My mother-in-law laughs. . . the little man, takin’ care of things. But it makes me cry.

We owe a lot to our military families.

When we visited Arlington this past week, we passed at least three funeral ceremonies on the way to Section 64. I lost track of the fresh graves and the still-standing tents, either just vacated by other grieving families, or awaiting the afternoon’s fresh, raw sorrow.

As we pulled up on Bradley Avenue, an Air Force honor guard was marching precisely back to their bus after a ceremony for an airman who had been a POW in Korea. While we searched for my father-in-law’s headstone, an empty horse-drawn caisson lumbered past, and settled briefly in the shade nearby, awaiting their next assignment. . .


We found my father-in-law’s headstone: The front has the Christian Cross with the old Chief’s Curriculum Vita. Chief Yoest cut high school to catch World War II. He retired with rows of ribbons and a “v” device, and pinned butterbars on his boy. He now has a grandson, The Dude, who bears his name and wants to be a Navy pilot.

The reverse of the stone is blank, awaiting the inscripton for Chief Yoest’s high school sweetheart, his wife, Jack’s mom, “Babcia” (Polish for Grandmother), who is still with us. In the end, they will be buried together, an honor she earned.

As we turned to go, the Diva took her jingle-bell necklace from around her neck, and left it on the headstone. A fitting tribute for a warrior.


Sailors, rest your oars.

We drove back down Bradley Avenue — past a fresh grave covered by a tarp. In front of us, sparkling in the bright sunlight of a gorgeous day, stretched row after row of white marble markers, orderly, peaceful, some weathered, others new and crisply chiseled . . .

I turned to the Penta-Posse. “I want you to look,” I said. “I want you to understand, that each one of these headstones represents someone who gave their life so that you could be free.”

They were quiet and solemn. The weight of it is beyond measure.

The Dreamer said, “Don’t cry, Mom.”

We made the right turn onto Eisenhower. We drove slowly toward the exit, passing the drive to the Tomb of the Unknowns to our left, until we came to a crosswalk thronged with tourists. The guard on duty motioned to the crowd to stop, and we drove through, passing through the gates, back to a busy day, leaving behind — the curious crowds, the chattering school children. . . and the silent stones.

Other Memorial Day Links:

Blackfive with “Opening the Gates of Heaven.”

Intel Dump

Marine Corps Moms

LaShawn Barber’s Corner

See Traffic Jam

Becoming “We”: Why I Changed My Name

May 18, 2005 | By | No Comments

I have a very distinct memory of hearing a speaker, prior to my marriage, offering advice to married couples and suggesting that they introduce themselves as “we.” As in: “Hi, we are the Yoests. Nice to meet you.”

Over at the Volokh Conspiracy, Eugene asks married women why they changed their names, if they did.

I changed my name so that together the two of us could become “we.” Now, we two have become seven, and the idea of “we” is even more important. Nay, essential.


Charles and Ruth Shaw

My Grandparents

Actually, I can’t express it any better than does one of my favorite poems, written by my Grandmother . . .about being “we.”


I was I and he was he

A ceremony made us ‘we.’

When in the sight of God and men

We pledged our troth and kissed our kin

And set our sails … breathlessly

On the matrimony sea.

My handsome prince

… he held my hand.

My every wish

… was his command

Until one day

… I said, ‘I think we

Should see my friends

… more frequently.’

He said, so loud … it shook the house

That he was man … and not a mouse

And furthermore … he said we should

See his friends more … he said we would.

He said, we would … most certainly

I said, we won’t … we both said ‘we’.

Strange, when we do … or don’t agree

One thing is clear … we both say ‘we’

Now that’s the secret … for love to grow

Through Summer’s sun … and Winter’s snow

Through diaper rash … and teething ills

From P. T. A. … to college bills.

Through three-point circuit … and inner-city

And Pastor Parish Relations Committee

Through Conference moving time … again

When you’re not one … of the bishop’s men.

Through covered dishes … well, thick and thin

Love like this … will never end

For when we do … or don’t agree

We still find joy … in being ‘we’.

Sarah Ruth Baird Shaw and Charles Shaw were married nearly 50 years before his death in 1986, and had seven children together. Baby Boo was her 15th great-grandchild. (My truly amazing grandmother has a website, and more poetry here.)

Howard Kurtz quotes Reasoned Audacity

May 10, 2005 | By | No Comments

Howard Kurtz quotes our review of the new blog, the Huffington Post today in Media Notes Extra.


Howard begins: “A rather mixed reception in the blogosphere:” Then quotes, American Mind, Jack Shafer at Slate, Nikke Finke at LA Weekly, Boi from Troy, and Reasoned Audacity, following:

“[Huffington’s] blog is a strange disconnect for me: in person, Arianna is strikingly beautiful, quite engaging, and her accent, so distracting on television, is charming. By contrast, the blog, named after her, is strangely none of those things.”

I thought one of yesterday’s most interesting comments on Arianna’s venture came from Jim Geraghty:

Attention, Arianna: We already know what celebrities think. They’re telling us all the time. . . this has “Tina Brown’s Talk magazine” or “John F. Kennedy Jr.’s George magazine” written all over it.

Today Arianna has one recognizable conservative female, Danielle Crittenden along with Joe Scarborough. Then for “balance,” Tina Brown, and a whole gaggle of male liberals: Rob Reiner, Bill Maher, Andy Stern, Gary Hart, Jerry Brown, Larry David, Walter Cronkite, Jon Corzine, Ed Markey. . .

Actually, come to think of it, that looks like a fair fight.

Marauding Marsupial Mom . . . on the Move!

May 8, 2005 | By | No Comments

A Marauding Marsupial Mom?

As the mother of five children, for Mother’s Day, let me offer a cautionary tale. The context — this week marked a major milestone in my life: I became a “Marauding Marsupial.” Which makes me, I figure, a Marauding Marsupial Mom! M-cubed!

How blogging has changed my goals in life — not only am I excited about being a marsupial, now I want to be a “Large Mammal.” Large not being an adjective I have heretefore wanted anywhere near me. . . Previously, I had been an “Adorable Rodent,” so you understand my excitement — even as an adorable one, I do much prefer marsupial to rodent. (If you’re new to blogs, rodents and marsupials are categories in the rockin’ TTLB Ecosystem thanks to N.Z. Bear.)

So, I was checking my progress in the Ecosystem one day this week, when the Dude walked in.

“Hey, guess what?” I said. “I’ve moved up! I’m a Marauding Marsupial now!”

“Cool,” said he. “What’s Instapundit?”

(Instapundit??!! The kid is 10 years old. How does he know about Evil Glenn?)

“Well, frankly, he’s pretty much at the top. A Higher Being, I think.”

“So how long will it take you to be as high as him?” he asks with sweet earnestness.

I snort. “The chances of that are basically nonexistant,” I said.

Mom!” the Dude exclaimed, “you can’t say that! You wouldn’t let me get away with that. You can do anything you want to do!”

Oh. Right.

The moral to this story: Be careful what you teach your kids — it will come back at you sooner than you think.

So, okay, people. The mission is now clear: tell a friend about Reasoned Audacity. . . and visit often. A ten-year-old’s faith in the Mom Who Can Do All Things is riding on it.

No pressure though.

I’m a Marauding Marsupial Mom on a Mission, and on the Move. . . Watch your back, Glenn Reynolds!

Aging? Who Me?

May 6, 2005 | By | No Comments

In his ongoing attempt to get me to: a) take my vitamins, and b) give up my Diet Coke addiction, the Chairman has sent me an article on aging (aarrrgggh) from Scientific American.

Apparently, he thinks my brain is functional here at the end of the week. Because the article includes words like “catalase” (very important) “hydrogen peroxide,” (bad, very bad) “free radicals” (even worse) “mitochondria” (I’m thinking, I’m thinking) “organelles” (connected to the mitochondria?). Insert random verbs. Your choice.

dorian gray.jpg
Dorian Gray: For Perpetual Youth,

What Would You Do?

But hey, I’m on the job, to figure out what all this means! So, I dug out the original article, “Extension of Murine Lifespan by Overexpression of Catalase Targeted to Mitochondria”:

To determine the role of reactive oxygen species in mammalian longevity, we generated transgenic mice that overexpress human catalase localized to the peroxisome (PCAT), nucleus (NCAT), or mitochondrion (MCAT). . . Cardiac pathology and cataract development were delayed, oxidative damage was reduced, H2O2 production and H2O2-induced aconitase inactivation were attenuated, and the development of mitochondrial deletions was reduced. . .

Okay, okay. Basically, it says: take your vitamins. (Better approach than Dorian Gray. . .)

But I’m not giving up my Diet Coke.