Friday, January 18, 2008

Damn Tipper! (and Jodi)

I had a chance to stop by this lecture yesterday and obviously expected greatness from the renowned National Geographic photographer Jodi Cobb; but was taken aback by the power of Tipper's portfolio. As I mentioned to her, she was able to capture the essence of the subject as well as their position, particularly with her Meals on Wheels collection. But while on excursions to British Columbia with Al for his environmental work, she documented fantastic landscapes reminiscent of Adams. Well done Tipper. She had briefly mentioned her trip to Rwanda, I would love to see more of work on that. Obviously...more to come.

Picturing Change: An Evening with Tipper Gore and Jodi Cobb
Thursday, January 17, 2008 @ 7:00 PM

In this rare and thought-provoking evening on photography, Tipper Gore and Jodi Cobb share their individual experiences behind the lens of the camera. Both women possess a deep passion for photography, and have spent much of their lives exploring the range and power of this medium. Tipper Gore, former photographer for the Nashville Tennessean and wife of former Vice President Al Gore, has traveled the world, taking time to capture most of her experiences through film. Her photographs were included in the 1999-2000 Corcoran exhibition, The Way Home: Ending Homelessness in America, and her photography has shaped her role as an avid advocate for issues related to mental health, education, and homelessness. Jodi Cobb, currently National Geographic's only female staff photographer, is a pioneer in her field, one of only four women to hold that position in the magazine's history. She boasts a impressively broad body of work, and is perhaps best known for her work as author and photographer of the award-winning Geisha: The Life, the Voices, the Art (Knopf, 1995). Her recent project for National Geographic, 21st-Century Slaves, offers an unflinching look at the brutal reality of the millions of people that are bought, sold, and exploited for profit each year. Gore and Cobb discuss their individual projects, and explore in dialogue, the role of photography as a vehicle for social change. This program is presented in conjunction with Ansel Adams, which closes to the public on January 27, 2008.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Now what were you thinking!?

While working at the Park, we really got to know the Morauw family very well, including the kanine members. Scooby, I can assure you, is harmless. WTF!

Officer Fatally Shoots Dog On Christmas Eve
WASHINGTON - A D.C. man is calling for an investigation after his dog was fatally shot by a police officer on Christmas Eve.

Michel Morauw said he was walking Scooby, a 2 1/2-year-old boxer, in a small park near 24th and N streets Northwest just after 11 p.m. on Monday. According to the police department's incident report, an officer said he was on patrol and entered the park "when an unleashed dog attacked him."

The report said the officer fired his weapon and struck the dog. Morauw said he is still in shock over what happened. He acknowledged the dog was not wearing a leash at the time, but he said the boxer posed no threat.

Morauw said Scooby was eight to 10 yards away from the officer. The dog was frozen in fear, Morauw said. Police said these kind of encounters are not unusual, and officers have been trained to address them, News4's Derrick Ward reported.

"The Humane Society of Washington, D.C. gave us a link to check out," said Lt. Samuel Golway of the department's firearms training unit. "They had a good training video. We've shown it basically from to April of '06 to December of '06 and in '07 we've been showing it during the inservice training."

Morauw, general manager of the Park Hyatt Washington Hotel, described himself as very supportive of the police, but he said he can't understand how this happened. "It's a family dog. We have three kids. It was Christmas night. There was no reason," Morauw said.

The incident is still under investigation, and the officer involved is on active duty. There was another incident in which a pet dog was killed by a police officer that led to the inclusion of the video in the department's training regime, Ward reported.

You Tell em'

Confidence in America
The Best Change the Next President Can Make

By Madeleine K. Albright
Monday, January 7, 2008; A17

I believe the most precious gift the next president could bestow upon America is an end to the politics of fear.

Fear, of course, has its place. Seven decades ago, the world did not fear Hitler enough. Today, Iraq remains a powder keg, Afghanistan a struggle, Iran a potential danger and North Korea a puzzle not yet solved. Pakistan combines all the elements that give us an international migraine. Al-Qaeda and its offshoots deserve our most urgent attention, because when people say they want to kill us, we would be fools not to take them at their word.

Still, we have had an overdose of fear in recent times.

We have been told to be afraid so that we might be less protective of our Constitution, less mindful of international law, less respectful toward allies, less discerning in our search for truth and less rigorous in questioning what our leaders tell us. We have been exhorted by the White House to embrace a culture of fear that has driven and narrowed our foreign policy while poisoning our ability to communicate effectively with others.

One manifestation of fear is an unwillingness to think seriously about alternative perspectives. America's standing in the world has been in free fall these past few years because our country is perceived as trying to impose its own reality -- to fashion a world that is safe and comfortable for us with little regard for the views of anyone else.

I love America deeply and I believe our country is still the best in the world, but I also believe we have developed a dangerous lack of self-awareness. No nukes, we say, while possessing the world's largest arsenal. Respect the law, we demand, while disregarding the Geneva Conventions. You're with us or against us, we declare, while ignoring the impact of our actions on Turkey and the Middle East. Hands off Iraq, we warn, while our troops occupy Baghdad. Beware China's military, we cry, while spending as much on defense as the rest of the world combined. Honor the future, we preach, while going AWOL on climate change.

We need to do a better job of seeing ourselves as others do. It strikes the world as ludicrous that we -- with all our wealth and power -- seem so afraid of terrorists, rogue states, illegal immigrants and foreign economic competition. People put themselves in our shoes and expect us to act with confidence, and so we should, but true confidence is shown by a willingness to enter into difficult debates, answer criticism, treat others with respect and do our share or more in tackling global problems. Confidence harnessed to purpose is what America at its best has been all about.

We are 4 percent of a planet that is half Asian, half poor, one-third Muslim and by and large far more familiar with recent American actions than with our country's past accomplishments. To many, the Bush administration is America. Our reputation is in disrepair. We will not recover by acting out of fear but by educating ourselves about the world around us, learning foreign languages, appreciating other faiths, studying the many dimensions of historical truth, harnessing modern technology to constructive ends and looking beyond simplistic notions of evil and good.

I pray that the next president, when taking the oath of office, will have uppermost in mind not the need to scare us but, rather, the need restore our faith in the American idea. That idea is based on our sense of unity and our commitment to one another. That idea is grounded in belief in democracy and burnished by our sense of responsibility to generations past and still to come. This is the glue that enabled us to overcome partisan political differences in earlier decades and to keep our nerve in the face of adversaries far more potent than those we face today. Combine faith in our traditions with the confidence to search for value in others, and we will have a far stronger platform for American leadership than any appeal to fear.

The writer was secretary of state from 1997 to 2001. She is the author of the forthcoming book "Memo to the President Elect: How We Can Restore America's Reputation and Leadership."

The Way I See It

Note: John THIS is NOT the Homage.

Madaline Albright, my personal hero, has a knack for hitting the nail right on the head. Yesterday, in the Post's In The Loop column, Al Kamen noted the possibility of Albright going for a second round as secretary of state, should Hillary move back into that rinky-dink shack on Pennsylvania. To steam the argument, he referenced her quote on the side of a milk carton, occasionally topped with a hint of coffee. (You may know it as Starbucks.)

"There have been rumors for many weeks now that former secretary of state Madeleine Albright is positioning herself to take another tour in that post should Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) become president.

Then there was the publication of Albright's new book, with the title "Memo to the President Elect: How We Can Restore America's Reputation and Leadership." Then she appeared center-stage, to Clinton's immediate right, after last week's Iowa caucuses. (Still trying to figure out how that happened, given the Clinton claim to be the embodiment of change. And what was Gen. Wesley Clark doing standing next to Albright?) Then there are those Starbucks coffee cups with sayings from various prominent people. No. 287 is Albright's famous observation: "There is a special place in hell for women who don't help other women."

So we called to ask: What's up with the rumors? And this is what she said, through a spokesperson: "I loved being secretary of state. It's a job you don't have twice. The only person who held it twice was Daniel Webster, and I am not Daniel Webster."

However, while the java settles, the message I'm talking away from it is this: There may be a special place in hell, but there is a special place in heaven for people who do help other people, gender need not apply.
Having said that, it is very rare to find a member on the vip list for that club. For the past 11 months, I have been honored to know someone who fits the bill. Lets be fair, I rouse from my slumber at o'dark hundred to take my seat at the bottom of the totem pole everyday and I love it!

I love it for thousands of reasons, but one of the outstanding ones is that I have an extremely exceptional work dynamic - I know my boss will go to bat for me...period. Whether it is defending me to another feisty anchor, highlighting my work behind the scenes, yelling at yippy producers to answer their own phone calls, or in a particularly extraordinary case, fight for a very generous job promotion, knowing that he was sacrificing a member of his morning team.

Damn John, not only is there a special place in heaven for you next to Mona Shaw, Andy Rooney, and my Grandma Goose, when I finally cave and marry the football player, (don't worry he'll be a minor leaguer!) you can bet four spots are blocked off for the Matthews family at the mickey table front and center.

When you're not fighting to defend yourself in the work place, it is amazing how much more creative and productive you are. John understands this, making his a superb manager. That's probably why his team does the same for him - without a blink. That's leadership! Madeline would be proud!

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Girl Brings Her A-Game Back

Why Hillary? She's a straight shooter. Yes she may be calculating and ambitious, but when were those deemed negative attributes in a presidential candidate?

And that "hidden agenda?" Can you honestly tell me you doubted she would run to fill her husbands shoes? In the words of Jimmy this am in the newsroom - "She's the only candidate that can balance the budget, kick your ass and bake cookies all in the same day."

In regards to that little moment worked! She needed an Oprah moment.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

That's Our Girl!

Welcome our new addition to Copa: Sophie
We're fostering her this week!

Thank You David for becoming the Pal for Paws Sponsor of Sophie

Breed: Beagle
Sex: Female
Age: Approx. 5 years
Color: Tricolor
Size: Approx. 20 lbs.
Status: Available with foster
Good With Kids: Yes
Good With Cats: Not Yet Determined
Good With Dogs: Yes

Sophie has the most strokable ears--long, smooth, and soft. Sophie starts out a bit shy, but she warms up soon. She has a mild and sweet personality that is very appealing. Sophie's pleasant nature could make her the perfect addition to your family. For more information about Sophie, please contact her foster at
To meet Sophie at an adoption event, please e-mail or call (703)295-DOGS.
Copa Notes: Linds fell in love with this one, the second they opened the van door. She has the most beautiful eyes.
It takes her a bit to adjust, she just started eating today. She is also very sensative to loud quick noises. But she follows you everywhere and when she sees you she lights up, runs over to you, and lays at your feet. She's hasn't barked once but she does whine a little when you leave and seems to cough a bit. (we're thinking the cough is a nervous thing) We've been spoiling her and letting her sit up on the furniture with us and sleep on the bed at night so hopefully that is okay with you and your family. She's just so sweet we can't help but say no!

Friday, January 4, 2008

Caucus Roundup

Iowa Round up:
1,702 of 1,781 precincts - 96 percent

Mike Huckabee 39,814 - 34 percent
Mitt Romney 29,405 - 25 percent
Fred Thompson 15,521 - 13 percent
John McCain 15,248 - 13 percent
Ron Paul 11,598 - 10 percent
Rudy Giuliani 4,013 - 3 percent
Duncan Hunter 515 - 0 percent
Tom Tancredo 5 - 0 percent

Barack Obama 940 - 38 percent
John Edwards 744 - 30 percent
Hillary Clinton 737 - 29 percent
Bill Richardson 53 - 2 percent
Joe Biden 23 - 1 percent
Uncommitted 3 - 0 percent
Chris Dodd 1 - 0 percent
Mike Gravel 0 - 0 percent
Dennis Kucinich 0 - 0 percent

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Out With The Old, In With The New

Brace yourself for a great 2008! (sorry it rhymes I had to do it!)

So after much deliberation here are the 2008 resolutions (and subsequent commentary)

1. Gym
Purposefully vague so when my weekly average is the twice a week and I put on 10 lbs I don't feel like I failed.

2. Crossword or Sudoku a week
Intention is to keep the brain sharp, does it count that I only do the Monday versions?

3. Happy Hour Once A Month
Need one I can achieve successfully

4. Grad School Applications
Doesn't mean I'm going, just want the ego boost to know where I can actually get in!

5. Audition Tape
Want to be a reporter remember?

6. Get on the Phone
I hate answering the phone, particularly the cell, so if I make the calls to Mom, Dad, Carly, and Aly - I'm not answering...see the logic!

7.Finish scrapbooks
Currently still working on Hawaii trip 1998....true story

8. Pick back up the French and Spanish books

9. Actually read the books sitting on my night stand

10. Drink your water!

11. Wash your face before bed!
Probably more than you wanted to know about me!

12. Take your vitamins!
Seriously Jen!

13. Watch more television
I know right?!

14. Do family research
another far reaching one but I have 12 months right?

And so I don't feel sooooo bad...lets recap other's mistakes last year: (Care of Wash Post)


5. "I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because, uh, some, uh, people out there in our nation don't have maps and, uh, I believe that our, uh, education like such as, uh, South Africa and, uh, the Iraq, everywhere like such as, and, I believe that they should, uh, our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S., uh, or, uh, should help South Africa and should help the Iraq and the Asian countries, so we will be able to build up our future, for our children."

-- Lauren Caitlin Upton, Miss Teen South Carolina, in the Miss Teen USA pageant, airing live on NBC. The 18-year-old was asked why one-fifth of Americans can't locate the United States on a blank world map. She later said she was flustered by the question.

Judge's note: Nobody expects beauty queens to be profound (see also: professional athletes, rock stars) but this one gets points for being an indictment of the same American educational system that was the basis of the original question. The video clip became a mean-spirited YouTube sensation, which prompted a backlash of support for Upton, who then went on the morning talk shows to give her more formal (and entirely forgettable) answer.

4. "In Iran, we don't have homosexuals like in your country."

-- Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, during a question-and-answer session at Columbia University.

Judge's note: Ahmadinejad, apparently trying to wrest the Most Homophobic President title from Zimbabwe's Robert Mugabe, appears so out of touch with reality that his remark does something he didn't intend: It tells us far more about him than it does about Iranian society. "It's so out there that I don't even know that it's homophobic," says Shapiro. "It says more about his delusions than it does gay people or Iranians." Given that this is a man who wants nuclear warheads, his delusions are important. And scary.

3. "That's some nappy-headed hos there."

-- Radio host Don Imus, describing his perception of the Rutgers women's basketball team.

Judge's note: Perhaps the most unforgettable thing anyone said this year. Odious, racist, appalling, it led to a national fireball of a discussion on race, misogyny and the firing of Imus. It was a temporary setback; Imus was hired by another network later in the year, though with black cast members and a subdued attitude.

2. "He has a wide stance."

-- Sgt. Dave Karsnia of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport police, summarizing Idaho Sen. Larry Craig's explanation of their June 11 bathroom stall encounter.

Judge's note: Perhaps the clearest addition to American slang this year. Craig was arrested on charges of lewd conduct, as the plainclothes officer said Craig was soliciting bathroom sex by sliding his foot from one stall to the adjacent one, touching Karsnia's in the process. This also takes the "Most Misquoted Quote Award." Just as Bogie never said "Play it again, Sam," Craig never said he had a wide stance. He actually said, "I'm a fairly wide guy," in the tape-recorded conversation with the officer. People liked it better the other way -- Google records about 104,000 Internet hits for "Larry Craig" and "wide stance" but just over 900 for "Larry Craig" and "wide guy." "Once it reaches a certain point, what he actually said doesn't matter," says Barrett. "Linguistically, you can never say 'wide stance' innocently again."

1. "Whoop-de-damn-do."

-- Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, quoting his own reaction to being told the Senate had confirmed his nomination to the Supreme Court.

Judge's note: This is a Shakespearean moment, if not quite rendered with the Bard's eloquence.

If you're a fan of Thomas, it reads as a devastating remark of despair: A black man in America rises from humble circumstances to the pinnacle of achievement after enduring the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune (also known as the confirmation process), only to become so disillusioned that the mountaintop no longer means anything. Tragedy, pathos, injustice. Wow. If you're not inclined to care for Thomas, it reads as the flippant remark of a bitter man, plucked from relative obscurity by a cynical president, to undermine the legacy of an icon (Thurgood Marshall). Worse, Thomas relates in his autobiography, he uttered the remark while sitting in the tub -- he didn't even want to get out of the bath! -- and pouting. Wow again.

They Must Have Taken A Later Flight

As a frequent transcontinental flier, I have another gripe against the airline industry...bring back our food!

Like most of cooperate America, we are squeezing our airtime between time zones and work schedules, and by the time I (theoretically) make my flight, I don't have time to grab dinner.

6 hours later, running on a bag of pretzels and 4 cups of coffee (United serves Starbucks- what can I say), I am not a happy camper as the baggage attendants are trying to explain to me why my luggage is in Minneapolis, while my direct flight to California landed 2 hours late.

All I am asking for is a hearty snack, and no, those day-old "turkey sandwiches" with wilty lettuce and no nutritional value, are not worth the five dollars (exact change would be greatly appreciated.)Charge me the extra five bucks on my airfare and bring back the chicken and salad.

But this wouldn't be too bad either.

Celebrity Chefs Bring Plane Food to New Heights
Airlines Upgrading Menus for Premium Passengers

By Del Quentin Wilber
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, January 1, 2008; D01

CHICAGO -- What celebrity chef worth his lamb chops with pomegranate glaze would risk culinary shame by creating airline food -- the butt of innumerable jokes about reheated hash that always seems to taste like chicken or even a salty tire?

Ask Charlie Trotter, a world-renowned chef who owns a five-star restaurant here and has written more than a dozen cookbooks. Trotter recently joined forces with United Airlines, a carrier that had been under bankruptcy protection and is known more these days for cost cutting than exquisite cuisine.

While preparing a potential en-route appetizer of shredded pork complemented by wild rice and Michigan sour cherries, Trotter admitted that some people don't understand the marriage of a culinary artist and cost-conscious airline. " 'Gosh, Charlie, I can't believe you have agreed to do food for an airline,' " Trotter recalled an incredulous friend saying to him.

Trotter is part of a trend sweeping the U.S. airline industry: major carriers upgrading their premium offerings -- especially their menus, with the aid of celebrity chefs. Delta Air Lines in recent years began offering food created by Todd English and Michelle Bernstein. Two other U.S. carriers, Continental Airlines and American Airlines, have also been busy overhauling their offerings with the help of celebrity chefs.

Airlines have a long history of using celebrity chefs to help them create meals for first- and business-class passengers. But most U.S. carriers trimmed or eliminated such programs during the economic turbulence that followed the 2001 terrorist attacks. American, for example, pared its 16-member chef conclave to six and then three.

The recent moves are a sign of the airline industry's economic revival and increasing focus on overseas expansion. Most of the food created by the celebrity chefs is being served on long-haul or international flights. For those in steerage (coach) who have grown accustomed to bags of pretzels, don't start dreaming about Continental's mouth-watering demitasse of seafood bisque with lump crabmeat. Carriers are mostly offering such delicacies to passengers willing to pay thousands of dollars for first- or business-class tickets. They are also increasingly battling international carriers known for their cuisine.

"If you have the chutzpah to charge a customer $8,000 to sit in business class or $10,000 or more than that to sit in first, you better serve a good product," said Henry Harteveldt, vice president of travel industry research at Forrester Research in San Francisco. "The food can't be lousy."

Chefs, known for their egos and bravado, are being thrown into the heart of the airlines' grudge-match battle for passengers with thick wallets. And they are not shy about their abilities to keep customers coming back.

United's on-staff corporate executive chef, Gerry Gulli, noted that American had recently hired Hawaiian chef Sam Choy to help devise its menus for planes heading to and from the island chain. Choy had worked for United several years ago.

"All the recipes we didn't want, American is using," Gulli said with a smirk during an interview at United's headquarters here.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Mile High Bitch Slap!

What a creep! They would need the air Marshall to restrain me.... As I fumingly reported this story to a colleague, he convivially retorted... "I would have made out with the guy," .......Have you met Katie?

PITTSBURGH (AP) - The charge is abusive sexual contact against an air traveler accused of groping a female passenger on a flight from Washington to Seattle Sunday.
Air marshals on the United flight intervened and the pilot diverted the jet to Pittsburgh.
A witness says 46-year-old Michael Holland had been chatting with the 39-year-old woman and, when she dozed off, began stroking her hair. According to a federal affidavit, he then suddenly started groping her. As she tried to get away, flight attendants summoned the air marshals, who handcuffed him and took him to an empty seat until the plane landed.
The marshals say he did not appear to be drunk.
Holland was held overnight in Pittsburgh before being released on bond, with a court date next week. The charge carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail and a thousand-dollar fine.
The woman says she's "still in a bit of shock."