Elise Sereni
     Patkotak
Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Neil deGrasse Tyson can take me anywhere he wants, in or out of this cosmos. When did astrophysicists become so damn sexy?

Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:48 AM •
Tuesday, March 18, 2014
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Now, this little man shares my bed and warms my back every night when he curls up into it and I’m as happy as Tom could have possibly ever made me. On top of which, Snowy doesn’t care what I look like when I get in bed so long as he’s allowed in too. So SCORE!
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Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:17 AM •
Monday, March 17, 2014
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But I think I can see Hawaii from here. If only this fence had a weak spot, that old lady who feeds me wouldn’t see me again until summer.
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Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:12 AM •
Sunday, March 16, 2014
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I’m not stopping until I hit Coronado!
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Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:08 AM •
Saturday, March 15, 2014

We now have conclusive proof that Obama is NOT any better at being a comedian than he is at being president. On the other hand, I’d still prefer him over just about every Republican currently running for president.

Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:35 AM •
Friday, March 14, 2014

Saw Ronan Farrow on the Colbert Report. What a nice young man. Articulate. Caring. Educated.  Frank would be very proud.

Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:33 AM •
Thursday, March 13, 2014

Let’s discuss the reality of family planning reducing the number of abortions that might be sought in any given year. What, you say in shock, you mean avoiding conception unless it is planned is a good way to cut abortion numbers? Yes it is. And apparently everyone who is anyone seems to understand that fact except perhaps for some members of Alaska’s enlightened state legislature.


Senator Fred Dyson (R-Eagle River) seems to feel that if sex is fun, then the participating players should bear all responsibility for any costs associated with it. I assume he also thinks that anyone who builds a blaze in their fireplace and then has the house catch fire should have to have their own fire department to put out the fire. Because, after all, the house had a furnace so building a fire in the fireplace was recreational.
By the same token, recreational boaters should have to pay to have rescuers on call every time they go out. The state should not have to pay for the consequences of their fun. Ditto for people who ski or use snow machines in the backcountry and get caught in avalanches or lost. Why should I pay to have Search and Rescue people on call to save them? If it’s just recreational, let them fund their own backup.
If Senator Dyson is so concerned about spending other people’s money on recreational sex, why is he not fighting to overturn the federal requirement that health insurance cover Viagra? Does he really think all those little blue pills are being used for serious matters? Does he really think covering treatment that allows for recreational sex without a concomitant coverage making that activity safe for all concerned makes sense?
I find it a source of continuing amazement that so many men seem so involved with women’s reproductive choices in a punitive fashion while viewing male reproductive choices as sacred and worthy of total support. What is it about a woman wanting to make healthy choices that makes these men so nuts? The argument that they are not against choices as much as they are against paying for them holds no credibility so long as those little blue pills loom so large in the picture.  In a country that allows organizations to bow out of providing birth control for women while being required to provide a pill that does the exact opposite for men, we should probably be doing some serious soul searching about where our priorities really are.
Not only does the current crop of politicians want to cripple all family planning efforts except for those rich enough to afford them, they’d also like to cut back on the funding for all the “whoops” babies that may result from their short-sighted planning. Fund early education programs?  I think not. Expand Medicaid to cover our poor?  Nope. Provide food stamps and other help to families literally starving in a country with an embarrassment of riches? Nah.
Our current politicians would just prefer to punish women who dare to have fun when they’re poor.  As anyone who has seen Les Miserables can testify, the poor are not supposed to have fun. And if they do, they should be prepared to pay for it, even if that means skipping a few meals along the way.
Every year this country has a surfeit of children available for adoption who wait for what must seem like an eternity for their forever home. Now our esteemed legislators would like to add to that number by forcing those who can least afford it to have more babies. And then they cut every program that could support a family living in poverty, thereby guaranteeing that the child will suffer in some way if not given up for adoption. They do all this while piously proclaiming that the child’s parents should not have been having sex if they couldn’t afford it.
There is plain shortsighted and then there is idiotically shortsighted. Not only does Dyson’s proposal penalize people for having a bit of “recreation” in their lives, but you can almost see his little Puritan lips lifted in a half sneer as he proclaims them unworthy of his precious tax dollars if they are unable to control their basest instincts.
I guess the Republican war on women is real. Wow.
Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:14 AM •
Wednesday, March 12, 2014

There is bacon and there is turkey. They should not be confused. Chopping up turkey and reforming it to look like bacon fools no one… especially after the first few bites.

Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:15 AM •
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
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I’m begging, goddess. Bring me someplace warm and sandy. I’m losing my normally cheerful disposition and starting to want to steal my owner’s credit card and make my own plane reservations.
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Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:44 AM •
Monday, March 10, 2014

I found out that if you don’t tell Social Security to take withholding out of your monthly check, they don’t. And then, come tax time, instead of the refund you have spent your entire life receiving and blowing on some silliness like groceries or penny slot machines, you have to pay. And pay a lot. OK, maybe not a lot for Mitt Romney or Bill Clinton. But for those of us in the trenches, it’s a lot.
Task for today… call social security and change withholding.

Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:38 AM •
Sunday, March 09, 2014

Vladimir Putin may be crazy and out of touch as being reported but that may be because of the all energy he needs to put into denying that he’s gay. OMG! I’ve seen less obvious examples of gayness in NYC’s Greenwich Village!

Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:22 AM •
Saturday, March 08, 2014

The headline read, “Allegations of groping faced by Army’s top sex-crime prosecutor”. Of course it did. So sadly SOP for the military.

Elise Sereni Patkotak • 11:18 AM •
Friday, March 07, 2014
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He may have lost a front tooth but he didn’t lose THE FRONT TOOTH that gives him such a manly appearance.
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Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:29 AM •
Thursday, March 06, 2014

If I correctly understand what’s being asked of Alaskans regarding the proposed constitutional amendment to allow public funding of private schools, the legislators proposing this amendment freely admit they have not a clue as to how much it will cost, what it will take from public school financing, how they will ensure that standards are being met or whether teachers will need to be state qualified to work in those schools. In essence, they are saying, “Trust us. We’re from the government and we’re here to help you.” Isn’t that the punch line of almost every conservative political joke about liberals?

Anyone who followed this paper’s recent series about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) knows that the problems created by maternal alcohol use during pregnancy can create children with significant emotional, physical and mental health problems. Perhaps one of the most startling things to come out of those reports is the extent of the problem in our state. We have the longest days, the shortest nights, the greatest number of sexual assaults and domestic violence, the highest rate of alcoholism and the most beautiful aurora displays. We are a state of great contradictions.
As we contemplate a constitutional amendment that may or may not cripple public school funding even more than the annual cuts we’ve come to expect from the state legislature, we should perhaps consider that all these FAS and FASD children are entitled by law to an education. We might want to pause and consider that public schools have no choice about accepting these children and trying to teach them within their sometimes limited academic capabilities. We might ponder how this obligation impacts the ability of public schools to function with ever less funding. Our legislators don’t change education requirements when they reduce the budget. They still expect the public school system to meet the challenge of every child who walks through their doors, no matter the degree of handicap or disability.
And yet somehow, in the midst of all this, the proposers of legislation with the potential to devastate public education funding want us to trust them to work out all the details equally and fairly after we change the constitution. Isn’t that what conservatives are always warning us about liberals doing?
It doesn’t take too much of a genius to realize the potential disaster looming for public education if this amendment is ever passed. Given that public schools will continue to fall under the law requiring them to teach all children to the best of their ability, there is every chance we will end up with a two tiered education system. One, publicly funded, that will handle every child with any level of challenge or intellectual handicap and another, also publicly funded, that will be able to pick and choose which child it will educate. I simply don’t believe that the legislators pushing for this amendment will craft rules that mandate private schools, charter schools and religious schools be required to take every student who applies, regardless of academic ability.
So no, I don’t trust legislators to make up the rules after the vote. If they want me to reconsider my opposition to this bill, then they need to come forward with some hard facts. How will they structure the system so that private schools receiving public funding will meet all necessary standards to produce fully educated youth? If money is given to private schools, how will public school funding be affected? Will the money come from the current public education budget? If that’s done, will it cripple public education’s ability to fulfill its legal obligation to meet the needs of all students who enter through its doors? Will a child going to a private religious school being paid for with public funding be required to hold to the religious beliefs of that school to become a student? Will creationism be taught next to evolution as though each is an equally valid hypothesis? Will Muslim, Hindu, Hebrew and Wiccan schools receive the same treatment as Christian schools?
Until these questions are answered in a clear and definitive manner, this amendment should never see the light of day. “Hi, I’m from the government and I’m here to help you.” – greatest punch line in the world and even funnier when conservatives are saying it.

Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:44 AM •
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
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Unlike BuddhaBubba, Snowy thinks that the snow is great. And he’d love to be a sled dog in the Iditarod… assuming by sled dog you mean that he gets to ride in the sled while the other dogs do the pulling.
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Elise Sereni Patkotak • 03:28 AM •

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