I wish to apologize to those who read my musings regularly, or even occasionally, and especially to the editor, Wayne Carter, for my failure to submit a column for my regular turn two weeks ago. Unfortunately, as happens to us all, life, and in this case a death, got in the way.
My extended family lost a vital member to the ravages of cancer. One of my brother's wife's younger sisters was taken, much too early, after a courageous battle with that insidious disease. Even though I may be considered a wordsmith by some, I'm not much of a public speaker. During the “Celebration of Life” gathering of friends and family, some told stories, mostly funny, and others reminisced, I couldn't bring myself to speak.
Here is what I wish that I could have said: There are four things that I'll always remember about Brenda. First is her laugh, she laughed heartily and often. Second is her zest for life, even at her worst, she went full bore forward, even the ravages of her disease only slowed her slightly.
Third, I'll remember her sense of humor. It was often a bit off center and more than occasionally off color as well. Lastly, I'll always remember her insanely delicious chocolate chip cookies, for which she was famous. She always said that she simply followed the recipe on the bag of morsels, but I'm sure that there was one secret ingredient that was put into every last batch. That ingredient was love. Each batch was usually made for a friend, or a family gathering, and contained the love that she had for us all.
Well, the hockey-playing grandson is now safely ensconced with his host family in Canada. On the day that he was to report, we had to be at the rink at 6:30 a.m., and after checking in, he and the rest of the team was on the ice before 7:30. They had a grueling 90-minute practice scrimmage followed by drills.
After that it was time for breakfast and then to his hosts home to move all of his gear in. Sunday was the same, 6:30 at the rink and another 90-minute scrimmage session followed this time by a 5K timed run. Then it was goodbye and a 12-hour drive to Alabama, mostly in the rain. I then had a late night flight the next day back to Maryland. It was a hectic six days, but an opportunity that couldn't be passed up.
The process to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh as a justice of the Supreme Court is finally over.
The day-long hearing earlier in the week was both contentious and contemptible, and a prime example of the depths that partisan politics have become. Christine Blasey Ford stated her case, as did Judge Kavanaugh, strongly and often emotionally. The members of the committee though couldn't seem to put their party loyalties aside to treat the witnesses fairly, in this writer’s opinion.
On Saturday, the Senate voted 50-48 to confirm Kavanaugh and he was promptly sworn in that day. Key votes from both parties were announced on Friday, during the preliminary procedural voting. Sens. Jeff Flake and Susan Collins, both Republicans, and West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, a Democrat, announced their support for Mr. Kavanaugh. Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski reaffirmed her intention to vote against the nomination. Ultimately, Murkowski withdrew her vote as a courtesy to Sen. Steve Daines of Montana, a Republican who would have voted to confirm Kavanaugh, who was attending his daughter’s wedding.
That leaves us pretty much where we were before any of the sexual impropriety charges were leveled. No advantage was gained by either side.