Monday, June 29, 2009

Off on Another Vacation

This one not so far away. We're going to Long Beach (WA not CA) for a few days of camping. Our trip to California last month didn't entail any camping (even though we'd planned on it, it was too early in the season and none of the National Forest campgrounds were open yet, nor was Mt Lassen National Park.

Nor was the pass that would have taken us from east of the Sierras into Yosemite.

So okay, Long Beach isn't going to make up for Yosemite, but it's close and it's warm-ish this time of year.

Back in a few days.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Time's Fun When You're Having Flies...

It's hard to believe, but I've been at this blog for four years already. You can check out my first wobbling steps here, with some great headlines like Shut the Fuck Up (chickenhawks), A Midget Among Giants (Ronald Reagan), Flag Burning Amendment -- A Solution in Search of a Problem, and my favorite, Rush Limbaugh You're an Asshole, in which I call the fat fucker out "...face to face with a Democrat-votin' meat-eatin' gun-ownin' beer-drinkin' Jeep-drivin' liberal Vietnam vet who will be more than happy to entertain the thought of kicking your fat lily-white ass."

Still no response from The Great Pimple Ass Draft Dodger, but I guess I didn't really expect there to be.

Four years and still kicking. And it's been a ton of fun. Here's to another four years, at which point I'll probably slipping up on my dotage faster than Darth Cheney shooting an old man in the face, and I'll be lucky if I don't spill my drool cup while I'm trying to choke down my Viagra...

Thanks for reading, everyone.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Savana Victorious in 8-1 SCOTUS Decision!

A while back I posted the sorry tale of young Savana Redding, the 13-year-old honor student who was humiliatingly strip searched by school authorities because she was suspected of being the school's number one dealer of ... ibuprofen!

Today the Supremes issued a decision in the case, finding for Savana by an almost unbelievable margin of 8 to 1.

Even "Stripsearch Sammy" Alito voted with the lopsided majority.

The only holdout? Clarence Thomas.

No, I don't know what the fuck is going on in his head, but when it comes down to this kind of lopsidedness -- especially when he is the lone holdout even against his judicial mentor and moral guardian Anthony "Tony Quack-Quack" Scalia, then you have to wonder about his mental health.

This ought to have been a slam-dunk 9-0 decision, but it wasn't. Is there a fund to contribute to that will allow wacked-out judges to get a mental evaluation and treatment? I'm just asking...

Which reminds me of a number of years ago when Oral Roberts was being held hostage by god, who was going to "call him home" if an insufficient number of Oral's posse didn't cough up the cash he needed. Ozzy Osbourne sent him a dollar with the stipulation that he use it only for psychiatric help.

I'd be willing to cough up a similar amount of cash to get poor Clarence the help he so obviously needs.

Rethug Sex Scandals: An Encyclopedic List

Over at The Daily Kos, Marcos and the gang have come up with something he calls the Dkosopedia (not to be confused with the also-valuable Dickipedia).

A prominent section in the Dkosopedia consists of an extensive list of dozens and dozens (must be close to 100 names) of Republican Sex Scandals.

We all know about Sanford and Vitter and Craig and Foley and Haggard, but here are a few of the lesser-known yet in many ways more salacious ones:

· Daniel Dean Thompson, 31, a Utah retailer of "family-friendly" tapes and DVDs (Hollywood films with the "dirty parts" cut out of them), arrested and booked into the Utah County jail on charges of sexual abuse and unlawful sexual activity with a 14-year-old.
· John David Roy Atchison, Republican prosecutor, was arrested for soliciting sex from a 5-year old girl, then killed himself three weeks later. At the time of his arrest, Atchison was an "assistant U.S. attorney" appointed by President Bush's attorney general
· Ted Klaudt, former South Dakota State Rep., found guilty of four counts of second-degree rape of two teenage foster daughters
· Louis Beres, chairman of the Christian Coalition of Oregon. 3 of his family members accuse him of molesting them when they were pre-teens. In August 06, Beres confessed.
· Don Haidl, Assistant Sheriff of Orange Country, in violation of California's rape shield law, led a smear campaign against the child his son poisoned and then violently gang-raped on videotape, adding up to 24 felony counts. He said that his son "acted accordingly" because the child was a "slut"
· Jim West, Spokane Mayor. Supported a bill, which failed, would have barred gays and lesbians from working in schools, day-care centers and some state agencies. Voted to bar the state from distributing pamphlets telling people how to protect themselves from AIDS. Proposed that “any touching of the sexual or other intimate parts of a person” among teens be criminalized. Had a sexual affair with an 18 year old boy
· Brent Parker Utah State Representative. Arrested for soliciting sex from an undercover officer posing as a male prostitute
And that's only the top of the iceberg.

No, the Rethugs don't have a monopoly on hypocritical behavior, but try finding even a quarter of that number among Democratic politicians who have weathered sex scandals.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Another Family Values Rethug Bites the Dust

Jeez, what is it with these guys? Isn't there a single Rethug out there who doesn't have the self-control to just keep it in his pants? It's to the point now where it really isn't news any more: Another Republican hypocrite? Yawn...

I'm talking of course about South Carolina Governor and now erstwhile presidential wannabe Mark Sanford, who mysteriously vanished for several days, during which it turned out he had secretly scuttled off to South America to squeeze a few with his Argentine homewrecking slut.

I'm sure you all remember the Republican Party -- you know, the party that has always stood up for "family values" and whose upstanding members were falling all over each other to see who could be the most strident in condemning Bill Clinton for his sexual peccadilloes...

Ah, how the worm turns... Remember that old saying about glass houses and rocks?

Nyuk nyuk nyuk.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Wanted: Freedom from Religion

That's the title of a new essay by Michael Lind over at the New America Foundation, and it's well worth the time to read. It puts into stark perspective what is really happening in Iran, and why the Rethugs are wrong when they start their self-important posturing about "stifling" democracy in Iran:

Secular government is the basis of both liberty and democracy. It is important to emphasize this, because of the tendency to portray the struggle in Iran in terms of a global conflict between democracy and dictatorship. Set aside, for a moment, the fact that former Prime Minister Mir Hossein Mousavi was one of four candidates, including President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who were approved to run as presidential candidates last May by the clerics of Iran's Guardian Council. It does not take away from the heroism of Mousavi or his followers to point out that if Ahmadinejad stole the election he stole an election that was already rigged.
The idea of universal, basic natural human rights is incompatible with theocracy in any form. While Christians and adherents of other religions can believe in natural rights, the theory of natural rights itself, influenced by ancient Greek sophists and Epicureans, is inherently secular. Natural rights by definition are those that ordinary people, using only their reason, can agree upon -- things like life and liberty and property or happiness, meaning access to subsistence. The list of natural rights varies from thinker to thinker, but they all have one thing in common -- they are not revealed by a divine intelligence to a prophet or priests.
There's a lot more. Like I say, it's well worth the read.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Capital City Pride Festival

I took a few days off to finish some projects. Didn't finish them, of course, but it's time to come back to the real world.

Had an absolutely terrific day yesterday at the Capital City Pride Festival. It's hard to imagine now that just a few years ago our LGBT brothers and sisters could never have pulled off something like this.

I was there as a representative of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. We had an information table set up under a canopy (a necessity in case of rain in the wet corner) in the park where the festival was headquartered, and as a result of our presence I think we'll have some new members for our local chapter.

The LGBT community by and large recognizes that one of their -- if not the -- major stumbling blocks toward full equality is the pernicious influence of the Religious Right on politics, and since AU is in the forefront of the fight against the infiltration of our government by the religious wackos, we are all on the same side, natural allies in the fight for justice and equality.

So it's ironic that some anonymous asshole chose yesterday to make an I-hate-gays entry on my Arizona Memorial "Desecration" post. I gave him my usual "I refuse to engage in a battle of wits with an unarmed man" answer, and if he ever decides to come out from under that cloak of anonymity I'll be glad to answer his pathetically weak objections (example: "Why do whatever deviant sex acts they practice need to be mentioned in any way. Why is the act of sex between two people of the same sex deemed so Noble now anyway? Keep it to yourselves homos!")

Why do I call him a "he"? Because nine times out of ten it's a man who has an issue with gays. Go figure.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

I'm Still Alive

It's just that I've been involved with a few "projects" that are taking up a lot more of my time than I expected. I'll be back to regular blogging next week. In the meantime, thanks for reading.

-- The F Man

Saturday, June 13, 2009

When "Imprecatory Prayer" Becomes Threat

Also known as voodoo, hex, jinx or curse, Imprecatory Prayer is one of the weapons used by the faithful to smite god's enemies. Or, in their version of things, god is listening to their pleas to smite his enemies and then giving them what they want, which he apparently otherwise wouldn't do... It's shaky theology which begs the whole question of their god's ominipotence, but that is another question for another day.

Back to Imprecatory Prayer: Conveniently for the practitioners of it, it always seems that god's enemies are their enemies as well.

It all sounds a little primitive, superstitious... savage, even ... except of course for those who actually practice it. A case in point is the Reverend Wiley Drake, a Southern Baptist who prayed mightily for the smiting of Dr. George Tiller, and is now crowing that god answered his prayers and smote indeed, yea mightily did he smite, Dr. Tiller.

So that means that our incarcerated wackjob Scott Roeder was actually just carrying out the orders from god, according to Wiley Drake. Well, shit, if that's all, then cut him loose...

This is the same Wiley Drake who has also been fervently praying -- ineffectually so far -- for the deaths of such notable enemies of god as Rev. Barry Lynn, the head of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. Fair enough, I suppose, since Drake -- contrary to the words of Jesus -- actually hates Lynn, but that's nothing compared to his latest bombshell, which came on June 2 in an appearance on Alan Colmes' radio show on -- where else? -- Fox News Radio:

Before appearing on Alan Colmes' radio show June 2, Drake had issued a statement that his imprecatory prayers for the death of slain Kansas Dr. George Tiller had been answered. He said that he "absolutely" believed that God wanted Dr. Tiller dead.
But Drake announced on Fox News Radio something that even Colmes could not wrap his head around. Apparently, in addition to AU's Lynn and Dr. Tiller, Drake has been praying for the death of – wait for it –President Barack Obama!
"So you're praying for the death of the president of the United States?" host Colmes asked in disbelief.
"Yes," Drake responded.
Drake said he didn't fear that these statements would maybe place him on a Secret Service or FBI watch list.
"I think it's appropriate to pray the Word of God," Drake said. "I'm not saying anything. What I am doing is repeating what God is saying, and if that puts me on somebody's list, then I'll just have to be on their list."
Later, still stunned, Colmes restated the question, "You would like the president of the United States to die?"
Answered Drake, "If he does not turn to God and does not turn his life around, I am asking God to enforce imprecatory prayers that are throughout the Scripture that would cause him death, that's correct."
It was one thing (though still wrong) for Drake to lash out Americans United back in 2007. After all, he was angry that AU reported his church to the IRS for partisan electioneering. We alleged that Drake violated the law by using church resources to endorse Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee.
But it's a completely different story to wish for the death of the president of the United States. It's just plain evil, and it serves as another example of the fanatical thinking of some members of the Religious Right.
"This whole concept that we're always to pray little, nice, soft, fluffy prayers – that we're not to pray imprecatory prayer – has been something that just, in all honesty, that Southern Baptists have lost, and we need to regain imprecatory prayer," Drake said.
"It is in the Bible," Drake continued, "and we are proud to say as Southern Baptists that we believe the Book. You've got to believe the whole Book, brother, or you don't believe any of it."
Got that? Wiley Drake's god is going smite Barack Obama! Now that's coming pretty goddam close to a physical threat on the President of the United States if you ask me, and at the very least it ought to earn Drake a personal visit from the Secret Service. This is really no different from some lunatic-fringe follower of The Great God Neptune shouting that his god is going to drown Obama. You can be sure that that guy would get some personal attention from the feds.

These assholes like Drake have a bunch of sheeple at their beck and call, and how long will it take before some unhinged nutjob like Scott "Angel of God" Roeder or James "Wacko" von Brunn listens to Drake and tries to take down the President of the United States "because it is god's will"?

Sidebar: Speaking of believing "the whole Book", of course anyone who has actually read "the whole Book" knows that every word of it cannot be literally true since it contradicts itself in numerous passaged throughout the whole thing. Even a third-grader can see the internal contradictions starting right at the beginning, in the first two chapters of Genesis with two very different accounts of how it all started.

Like I've always said, Jesus protect me from your followers.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Right Wing Talking Points on Von Brunn

I was wrong when I said the wingnuts would fall all over themselves in denial that they had any responsibility in Wednesday's terrorist attack on the Holocaust Memorial Museum.

I was way wrong. Instead they came out swinging, insisting that James von Brunn's racist anti-Semitic rhetoric and actions were the responsibility of the Left, and not the Right.

Cue the Scooby-Do "Huh?" sound clip.

Yesterday Pimple-Ass Limbaugh went into a rant about von Brunn's views being "Leftist", and that was followed up by one
Kathy Shaidle at the Washington Examiner (naturally a rightwing rag), who says that von Brunn's political views, "like so many in the Anti-Semite community, track left rather than right".


Memo to Limbaugh and Shady Shaidle: Just because Nazi Party had "socialist" in its title does not mean that they were "socialists" or had "socialist" ideas. Do a little research, people, for chrissakes.

But, as we all know, the truth is meaningless to these assholes. They are still adherents to the "Big Lie" theory, and will do everything they can on every occasion to blame the ills of the country on "The Left". And they'll continue getting away with it as long as their sheeple keep following them blindly.

I also heard on the radio yesterday some joker -- I tuned in somewhere in the middle and didn't get his name -- who was apparently speaking for the NRA, arguing with Big Eddie Schultz about whether people like Asshole von Brunn who are as openly and violently hostile to a class of people such as Jews or African-Americans should be allowed to own firearms.

It's an interesting question and one that deserves discussion, but this guy of course added nothing to the debate, instead falling back on the NRA's same tired old position, "enforce" the laws we already have, everyone has a right to own a gun, etc etc etc.

But remember that it was the NRA who was very late to the game in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and it wasn't until they were basically shamed into it that they protested the ongoing confiscation of firearms from New Orleans residents.

Why? Because those residents were predominantly black, and the last thing the NRA really wants is a bunch of armed black people...

Okay, now fast forward to Wednesday, and try to tell me with a straight face that if the Holocaust Memorial murderer was a black guy named Mohammed that they still would come out so vociferously for him to have been able to carry a gun.


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

More Rightwing Terrorism: RIP Officer Johns

The shooting at the National Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington DC was a horror that didn't need to happen.

But it did.

And the shooter was a happily -- if senile (the fucker is 88 years old) -- self-styled member of the anti-Semite militia. His website (I won't provide the link) "Holy Western Empire" is a hodge-podge of seemingly pro-veteran and weird-assed anti-Semitic crap (example: "A new, hard-hitting exposé of the JEW CONSPIRACY to destroy the White gene-pool"), which is now "unavailable", but do a Google cache search and you can see it.

We just got back into town from a ride up Hood Canal where we bought a dozen oysters at the remarkable Hamma Hamma Seafood and I was all ready to kick back on the deck while the oysters were on the grill and toss back a few cold ones, and then this smacks me in the face.

I haven't seen any news or read any websites other than the main news, but I'm willing to bet my next paycheck that the wingnuttery will be falling all over itself, as usual, in complete denial that they had anything to do with it.

And I guess if you discount the atmosphere of hatred and violence that those assholes have created and fed, every day over the airwaves, then they're right... They are completely innocent... Throwing gasoline on the fires of hatred? "No, we'd never do that"...

BTW, I'm sure that I met and talked to Stephen Tyrone Johns, the security guard that this asshole murdered. Whenever I go to museums or other similar places, I always talk to the guards. Since they have to stand around all day, while all around them people are pretending that they don't exist, I always make it a point to talk to them, if only briefly.

And after seeing the photograph of Johns accompanying the news stories, I'm certain that I talked to him the last time I visited the Holocaust Memorial.

My heart goes out to Officer Johns' family and friends for their tragic loss.

Monday, June 08, 2009

A SCOTUS "Common Sense" Ruling

In a closely-contested US Supreme Court case (Caperton v. A. T. Massey Coal Co.) the High Court ruled for the first time that bribing a judge to get a favorable opinion in a case you've brought before him is unconstitutional.

Like I say, that seems to me to be a glaring example of a "duh"-moment common sense ruling.

But what do I know? Four of the august "great minds" on the court disagree, and with that narrow 5-4 decision, it still seems that justice can -- almost -- still be wholly bought and paid for.

Want to take a guess as to who the dissenting four were? Yep, it was the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse themselves: Roberts, Scalia, Thomas and Alioto, all of whom said it was just fine to pay three million dollars to get a judge elected to office just so you could bring your case before him and have him rule in your favor.

Actually, no surprises there, with those four über-Republican judges, and don't let's forget Antonin "Quack-Quack" Scalia's fishing trip with Darth Cheney right before SCOTUS heard a case that involved the vice-presidency. No conflict of interest there, was there? So it's not surprising that he thinks this bribe is okay.

At least Sotomayer, who is replacing Souter, is on record as being with the majority opinion.

This is why it was SO important to elect a Democrat in 2008 and to reelect Obama in 2012.

We just can't afford to have any more wingnut bribe-taking rights-abusing freedom-hating capitalist-pig-Republican-protecting neo-judicial-activist judges on the Supreme Court.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Bible-Based Marriage

Who knew that traditional Bible-based marriage could be so much fun? Or so weird? Or so just plain nasty (and not in a good way)?

Here's Betty Bowers, who just happens to be America's Best Christian, to explain it all:

Read View it and weep, all you non-biblically-based-marriage freaks (you know who you are...)

[HT to It's My Right to be Left of Center for the link to the video.]

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Take That, Billo!

This is priceless. Bill Orally flatly lies and states that CNN did not cover the Arkansas military recruiter shooting until 10:00 the next night.

Watch CNN's Rick Sanchez hand Billo his lunch. Like I say, priceless.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Worst President Ever?

Okay, Baby Doc Bush immediately leaps to mind, followed closely by James Buchanan. But according to Robert Parry, Saint Ronald deserves to be added to that list.

Yep, Ronnie Ray-gun himself, idolized by the teeming millions of mindless sheeple, canonized by wingnut radio, and lionized by a right wing that, if he were still alive, would not really welcome him into that shrinking tent that's become the Rethug Party.

Granted, the very idea of rating Reagan as one of the worst presidents ever will infuriate his many right-wing acolytes and offend Washington insiders who have made a cottage industry out of buying some protection from Republicans by lauding the 40th President.
But there’s a growing realization that the starting point for many of the catastrophes confronting the United States today can be traced to Reagan’s presidency. There’s also a grudging reassessment that the “failed” presidents of the 1970s – Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter – may deserve more credit for trying to grapple with the problems that now beset the country.
I've been saying for nearly 30 years not that I don't get it when it comes to the glassy-eyed adulation that has been heaped on The Gipper. I always thought it was one of those "emperor's-new-clothes" things, and that eventually everyone would sober up and realize what awful things Reagan did to this country.

As usual, Robert Parry nails it. Read the entire article -- it's well worth the time.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

The Serial Crimes of Michele Bachmann

PM Carpenter today has a piece on Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Unreality) outlining many of the serial offenses to reason and logic that she's committed over the years:

· The Hoot Smalley Tariff...
· Baghdad's "Green Zone" is like the Mall of America only nicer...
· The scariest Big Brother intrusion is ... fluorescent bulbs!
· Minnesotans should be "armed and dangerous" to fight Obama's plans to stop global warming...
· The US is in danger of "running out of rich people"...
· Certain Members of Congress should be investigated for being "Un-American"...
Carpenter's piece is an argument that the Rethug Party needs to clean house and get rid of Bachmann and those of her ilk. That's were I take issue with him.

The more goofy morons, religious wackos and detestable ass-pimple pricks that the Rethugs can keep front and center, the more like the Dems are to win elections.

So my vote is keep her there and on the air.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Domestic Terrorism

There's really no other way to describe it, and for the eight long years of the BFEE it was dismissed, pooh-poohed, conspiracy-theory-ized and denied. With the connivance of the wingnuttery and their agents in the CPM*.

The DHS Domestic Terrorism Report which came out in April (and which had been ordered by the Baby Doc Bush Maladminstration sometime earlier, but was cleverly released after Obama had taken office) was immediately attacked by the slavering pitbulls of the right, to the point where DHS Secretary Napolitano was forced to issue a half-hearted apology.

Sidebar: Fuck that shit, Janet. You ought to know that you don't show weakness to a mad dog.

Of course now that report was found to be right on the money, that we are (like no one has known this before) much more likely to be attacked by domestic terrorists than "foreign" terrorists.

See Domestic Terrorism in the US for the alarming statistic that between 1980 and 2000 -- a mere 20 years! -- 250 of the 335 terrorist acts in the US were carried out by American citizens!

See also Anti-Abortion Violence for a breakdown of the history of violence against women's clinics and reproductive health providers.

And yet Darth Cheney remains strangely silent on the issue of domestic terrorism. Why is that? He'd certainly be quick on the trigger if we were suddenly subjected to another "foreign" terrorist attack.

Could it be that The Dick actually knows some of these "lone nut" losers? Could it be that he doesn't want anyone looking into the "nonexistent" domestic terrorists?

Could it be that he is, in fact and in thought, a domestic terror enabler/crime boss himself?

I'm just asking...

[* CPM = Capitalist Pig Media, aka the Main-Stream Media, aka the So-Called "Liberal" Media]

Randall Terry: Hypocrite in Chief

It didn't take activist abortion foe, creepy dickhead and fulltime hypocrite Randall Terry to hog the spotlight on the murder of Dr. George Tiller in Kansas. Among other things, Terry said that Tiller basically caused his own death, having brought it on himself for his participation in the "slaughter of the innocents".

Never mind, Randy, that the accused killer, one Scott P. Roeder, 51, was an active participant on your blog. Never mind, Randy, that one James Charles Kopp, who murdered a New York reproductive health doctor in 1998, was a known close associate of yours.

And while I can't find, in a cursory search of the Internets, any reference to the incident, I remember clearly way back in the early 1980s, Randy was the honcho of a group of anti-abortion rioters who took over a clinic somewhere in upstate New York. At some point during the violence, an employee of the clinic who was six months pregnant was hit in the stomach, resulting in the loss of her child.

So wouldn't you think that the person who did this would be willing -- no, eager -- to be charged with "murder of an unborn child" and demand the full punishment of the law? After all, these people are pretty mouthy when it comes to the "rights" of those unborn Americans.

No, you people are smart enough to know the answer to this: The guilty party (and I can't recall now who it was, but it was someone close to Randy, who had been rioting on his orders, thereby making Randy equally culpable) plea-bargained it down to something like "simple assault".
(If anyone can find this story, please let me know so I can get my facts straight.)

Hypocrites, every last fucking one of them. And who the fuck is Randy Terry to tell other people what to do with their lives when he can't even control his own? After all, he's divorced, alienated from most of his many children (including the gay one, naturally), and now married -- the obvious result of a midlife crisis -- to a woman 17 years his junior.

And this after he said in one of his books, "Families are destroyed as a father vents his mid life crisis by abandoning his wife for a 'younger, prettier model.' "

What was that line from the Xian bible about being so concerned with a mote in someone else's eye that you can't see the two-by-four in your own?

Like I say, every fucking one of them is a hypocrite. And while hypocrisy itself is not so bad in the long view of things, when it comes to Randy Terry and those of his ilk, it has led directly to the multiple bombings of women's clinics and the murder of many reproductive health providers in this country .

Enough is enough. I'd like to see him prosecuted for conspiracy to commit murder. Sadly, though, I don't see that happening. All I can see is more domestic terror coming down the road.

Children of a Stupid God

This was sent to me by my secular-humanist 16-year-old grandson:

...once again proving that old "not far from the tree" thing. Naturally I'm very proud of him.

Monday, June 01, 2009

We're Back!

Back from a terrific long weekend at Lincoln city on the Oregon coast with my daughters, several grandchildren, and especially ten-month-old Allie, my only (so far) great-grandchild! We stayed at the SandeCastle, a terrific place, right on a bluff overlooking the beach, a big neo-victorian house with sleeping arrangements for 16 people, fully furnished with everything you'd need, including board games and a pool table. And we had the entire house to ourselves, not some tiny room under the stairs where you have to share the bathroom with strangers (as in your average B&B).

Naturally we didn't want to leave, but sooner or later you always have to bounce back to reality.