Friday, October 29, 2010

End of the line

After possibly identifying my biological mother, I sent an email and a voice mail her way. Nothing too confrontational, just saying that she was in the same class as my mom and I'd like some help. I did the same thing with a couple of her classmates.

It's been two weeks and I've heard nothing. Maybe I guessed wrong, or maybe she'd rather not meet me. Understandable. She doesn't seem to have any other kids. Probably doesn't think of herself as a mother. Doesn't want to have to explain her decision.

That's fine. But if she changes her mind, she knows where I am.


Saturday, October 23, 2010

"Playing doctor" is less fun with psychologists

It's been quite some time since I appointed a new TV Girlfriend. Probably because I haven't had cable and haven't watched much TV in the last year or so. But I have been able to keep up with some shows on Hulu, and that's where I met my most recent TV Girlfriend.

Say hello to Dr. Elizabeth Moore, a staff psychologist at the Hartford Hospital's Anxiety Disorders Center. She's been making appearances on "Hoarders," and I was won over by her elfin good looks and her PhD. I also wouldn't feel the need to clean up my apartment before she came over for a date.

Now, I think she'd look better with longer hair, but I can understand why you'd want to keep your hair short if you spent a lot of time wandering through houses full of feral cats.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Annals of masterful lawyering

Imagine you are a lawyer who is representing a client who has been convicted of raping his girlfriend while they were both very drunk. Imagine, now, that you are taking this case up on appeal. Imagine that you are looking for an insightful quote to start your brief off with a bang.

A Montana lawyer, Palmer Hoovestal, decided that under these circumstances, the right way to start off his brief was with this quote:

"Don't worry about it... Like he said, we all do dumb shit when we're fucked up." - Mike Tyson, The Hangover

The Montana Supreme Court found this to be more than a little tacky, and delivered a delightful judicial slap in Hoovestal's face.

Belanus' brief on appeal opens with an expletive-laden quote from former boxer Mike Tyson... a peculiar choice for this case, given Tyson's conviction for raping an 18-year-old girl in Indiana in 1992.... The not-so-subtle point of this Tyson quote is that people should be forgiven for outrageous acts committed while extremely intoxicated... and which he now, for whatever reason, believes the court should bear in mind as we consider the legal issues raised in this appeal.

Do you think he won the appeal?

Monday, October 11, 2010

"Il Procuratore," an opera based on life in the C-Squared

Act One:

The curtain rises on the prosperous town of Canyon, and the audience is introduced to Giovanni di Bujak, a lawyer who boasts of his prosperity ("Io sono un uomo ricco"). His aria is cut short when a messenger brings news that the banks have failed. A panicked crowd rushes the bank and bewails their lost assets ("La mia casa è andata").

Giovanni returns home to his wife Pepe, who compares him to her new automobile ("Ah, mia Escalade è delizioso"). Their reveries are interrupted by a stream of Giovanni's clients, who cannot pay him ("Mi merito un avvocato libero"). As the clients leave, they are followed by a man from Revenue Interno, who warns Giovanni and Pepe that they have fallen behind on their taxes. He will return in six months if the bill is not paid, and take everything they own ("Si lavora per nessuno, ma me").

Giovanni and Pepe are stunned by the news ("Mie scarpe! Miei vestiti! Mia Mercedes!"). But Giovanni has a plan: the office of Procuratore has recently become vacant. If he can become the new Procuratore, he can borrow some money from the public and repay it when fortunes improve. The two decide to go ahead with the plan, and contribute the last of their money to Giovanni's campaign ("Si ritornerà a noi triplice").

Act Two:

The curtain rises on Giovanni walking the streets of Canyon, proclaiming his candidacy ("Io sono duro su bande"). Meanwhile, Pepe sings of her fear that their poverty will be exposed ("Tutto nascondi"). Pepe is overheard by a local man, Roberto Enrico, who becomes suspicious.

Election Day arrives, and Giovanni becomes the Procuratore. He receives a triumphal coronation ("Io sono il ministro della jusice"). After the coronation, Giovanni embarks on a whirlwind of change, replacing all his staff, appearing frequently in the media ("Per il rilascio immediato solo"), and sneaking money out of the treasury ("E 'tutto lì nel contratto.")

Roberto Enrico relays his concerns to a former Procuratore, Michelizzi, who plan to expose Giovanni's fraud. As Giovanni and Pepe celebrate the return of their prosperity, Roberto and Michelizzi sing of their corruption ("Presto saremo fuori del debito / Ladro! Donnola!")

Act Three:

Revenue's deadline is fast approaching, and Pepe realizes that they cannot afford to repay the tax collector and the money owed from the treasury. Giovanni reassures her that their actions will not be discovered ("Nessuno deve sapere").

At the next meeting of the Commissari, Roberto and Michelizzi arrive and accuse Giovanni of theft. The Commissari panic ("Può essere vero?"), but Giovanni reassures them that he is prosperous and has no need for Canyon's money ("Fidati di me, io sono incorruttibile"). Roberto and Michelizzi are turned away, and after the meeting, Giovanni expresses his private fears that he will be discovered ("I proiettili sudore").

Giovanni returns home to find Pepe trying to balance the family budget. She urges him to come clean before things get worse ("Dobbiamo porre fine a questo inganno"). Giovanni refuses, stating that his plan has almost come to fruition ("Dimettersi? Nel nostro momento di trionfo?").The two pray for their deception to work. ("Noi li rimborsa e saremo perdonati").

Act Four:

The curtain rises on the office of the Procuratore, as Giovanni directs his employees ("Nostro ufficio è senza carta"). Suddenly, the Revenue Interno man arrives, flanked by Roberto, Michelizzi, and the Commissari. The agent, Roberto, and Michelizzi confront Giovanni with proof that he has stolen money from the treasury to pay his debts ("Ladro! Donnola! (reprise)"). As Giovanni issues denial after denial, more and more of the Commissari, and even Giovanni's staff, join into the reprise. As the complaints come to a head, Giovanni can no longer bear it and cries out his resignation ("Ah, io sono rovinato!")

Giovanni is led away to the stocks as Pepe mourns ("Siamo così stati vicini") and his staff frets about their fates ("Non c'è lavoro per gli avvocati").

Act Five has yet to be written. Will Michelizzi take the office of the Procuratore? Will Giovanni go to jail? Will he flee to Buenos Aires? Will Pepe denounce him? Will he fall upon his sword? Will he be dragged to hell like his namesake? We shall see…

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Closing in on a solution

I went to Iowa City this past weekend, and in addition to being part of a massive gold stripe, I paid a visit to the university archives to have a look at my birth mom's graduating class.

Fortunately for me, electrical engineering was not a popular major for women in the early 80s, so I was able to narrow down my list of candidates to ten people. From there, I applied a little Internet detectivery and was able to find one member of the class who appears to match up well with the information I have.

This candidate is an electrical engineer with brown hair and eyes, who worked in satellite communications for many years, is from southern Iowa, and enjoys cycling. She now lives in Louisiana, works as an Internet systems designer, and, oddly enough, is associated with the Big Easy Rollergirls. I guess it might run in the blood…

I'll try contacting her in the next week or so and ask her for help finding my birth mom - I don't want to go right out and accuse her of being my mom.