Thursday, January 20, 2011

Thursday Miscellanea

In the news:
I know it's a revolutionary idea, but patients in most hospitals will now get to designate who their visitors should be. Ya know, instead of having some hospital personnel who know nothing about them decide who can and cannot see them. What's amazing is that this is 2011, and we're just now finally implementing such a basic no-brainer policy. And who the hell would oppose a policy like this, anyway? Saints preserve us!, as my great-aunt would say.

It hasn't been in the news much, but Illinois is on the brink of abolishing the death penalty. Assuming the pro-death penalty governor signs the bill that has already been passed by the General Assembly. Either way, the fact that the bill was passed by the state legislature, any state legislature, feels like progress.

The supreme court dealt a blow to employee privacy rights this week, and grappled with the fallout of granting corporations personal privacy rights. At this rate corporations may soon have more of a right to personal privacy than, um persons. Which could prove a bit awkward. Or maybe not, as long as people dutifully remain cocooned in their haze of perpetual commercialized entertainment, consumer rat-race running, and second-shift working. That should prevent them from noticing or objecting to the relentless erosion of their rights.

And finally, a recipe for catnip crackers for your cat:

* 1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
* 2 tablespoons dried catnip
* 1/2 cup plain yogurt
* 1 egg
* 1 tablespoon honey
* 3 tablespoons vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, mix together the flour and catnip, then stir in the yogurt, egg, honey, and vegetable oil. Roll out the dough on a floured surface and cut into small bite-sized pieces with a pizza cutter or small cookie cutters. We have a small dogbone-shaped cutter and a tiny duck-shaped cookie cutter we like to use. Place them on a greased cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes or until they start to brown.

If you have small kids in your house like I do, store the cat crackers in a container on a high shelf to prevent the kids from feeding the cats too many. Believe me, most cats will eat as many of these as they're given, but should only be given a few at a time to avoid manic climbing-the-drapes-and-swinging-from-the-light-fixtures episodes followed by a sleeping-off-the-catnip-hangover-with-a-bit-of-a-tummyache episode.


  1. I believe I had one of those episodes last night.

  2. Anonymous1/20/2011

    If it was so easy to fix the hospital visitation policy, I wonder why nobody did it before now. Think how much emotional pain could have been prevented!

  3. I'm not sure what to make of the kind of contradictory supreme court privacy ruling. It's perplexing, and kind of scary to see the sort of thing they were allowed to ask.

  4. OhSusanna1/20/2011

    I'm sure the argument against hospital visitation had something to do with medical workers not wanting to be inconvenienced by a change in policy. Because every change like this gums up the works and slows down the institutional machinery. Better to have people die alone without the companionship of their loved ones.

  5. happyfeminist1/21/2011

    I know this is probably an unpopular view, but I think working on things like hospital visitation rights is so much more important than gay marriage anyway. I really do think detaching the privileges that come with marriage from the legal and religious institution is the way to go, and leaves conservatives with little reason to object.