“It was self-defense, conservative style,” Professor Plum said. “She hit him back first.”

He read the mail. (More)

He took Ms. Scarlet’s hand and they left to join the resident faculty in the wine cellar faculty lounge, where they’ll spend the weekend drinking thinking on our motto of Magis vinum, magis verum (“More wine, more truth”).

In the staff poker game, the Professor of Astrology Janitor peeked at a ghostly pair of black Eights. He called Chef’s opening raise and saw the Eight of Hearts, and the Five and Six of Diamonds fall on the flop. Worried that Chef may have a Seven or two Diamonds, the Professor of Astrology Janitor put in a pot-sized bet. An open-ended straight draw or a flush draw would be a 3:1 underdog, and his bet offered only 2:1 pot odds. Even so, Chef called. The Jack of Clubs on the turn was harmless, as Chef would not have called at the flop with only a pair of Jacks. More likely, the Professor of Astrology Janitor reasoned, she had a straight or flush draw. With only one card left to come, she would be a 5:1 underdog. He bet the same amount he had on the flop, now a third of the pot, offering 4:1 pot odds. Once again Chef quickly called.

The Professor of Astrology Janitor’s stomach sank as the Queen of Diamonds fell on the river. He sighed and checked. Knowing he would not call any bet, Chef checked and turned over her Seven and Eight of Diamonds, adding “With both draws, I had the odds all along.”

The Professor of Astrology Janitor began his plaintive mewling and Chef went to the kitchen to make Banana Ghosts and Tangerine Pumpkins, leaving your lowly mail room clerk to review the week’s correspondence….


Dear Ms. Crissie,

Please take a look at Bristol’s recent blog posts for her story, not the media’s story of what really happened last month. What happened on the night in question wasn’t funny. It was humiliating and frightening. The broken ribs, black eyes, and messed up elbows and knees suffered by people in our party that night were no laughing matter. Neither were Bristol’s bruises on her arms and leg from being dragged by a man. My kids aren’t proud of what happened, nor are they seeking sympathy by playing the victim card – that’s why they haven’t commented on this for all these weeks. Instead, they had to have faith that the truth would come out, despite those who did the cold-cocking actually using social media to brag, “’bout to get famous!” Screen shots of tweets captured their bold intentions, and they’ve certainly enjoyed the publicity.

Looking at the reports, it strikes me as bitterly ironic that the same people who tell us there is a “war on women” have no problem laughing at the recording of my daughter crying as she tells police about being assaulted by a man. I’d like to say shame on the media and those on the left laughing at her or at any young woman in a similar situation, but I no longer think they have any shame.

Sarah in AK

Dear Sarah,

We agree that violence against women is not funny. We also note that violence committed by women is not funny, and the witness statements reported by the Anchorage P.D. make it clear that your daughter Bristol started the fight. While Bristol denied that in her blog post, the police report said your daughter Willow agreed with the other witnesses. Bristol also proclaimed herself a “feminist hero” because, she said, the man she punched “had it coming.” In light of the entire police report, we think it more likely that Bristol – who was clearly intoxicated – decided to practice self-defense, conservative style: she hit him back first. Several times. Until people dragged her away.

We also note that, while you deny “playing the victim card,” both you and Bristol are playing that card in trumps. Indeed Bristol even engaged in whataboutery, saying the media should instead be discussing Vice President Joe Biden’s son. We feel compelled to note that – unlike Bristol – Hunter Biden was punished for his mistake. We also note that every major media outlet covered that story.

Finally, we cite Josh Marshall’s insightful analysis on why conservatives so freely, and absurdly, flip the script on issues of race and gender bias:

I think it kind of goes without saying that if news emerged that Bristol had been assaulted by a boyfriend or spouse or really anyone else, no one would be laughing. Indeed, I’m not sure anyone now is laughing so much as standing back agape and marveling. But advocates who are trying to alter public perceptions about and stiffen penalties against violence against women are, I do not think, saying that female bodies are inviolable in every case if you barge into someone’s party and start swinging punches at them.

To cite this as an example of the scourge of violence against women is really to make a mockery of it.

But this is actually a common tendency on the right with issues of gender, race and much else. If you don’t actually take the issue seriously in the first place, it comes naturally to flip it around in a cookie cutter kind of way. You say we are hostile to women? Well, I saw you be mean to a woman, too! So there! Whether it’s treating women by different standards or bearing animus toward women as a group doesn’t really matter. If you don’t really care about the issue in the first place it’s easy to turn it on its head. Because you don’t see it as a problem but a cudgel, just another weapon in the brick-a-bat of partisan or ideological combat.

We conclude that you give all of this away in the first sentence of your Facebook post: “Please take a look at Bristol’s recent blog posts for her story, not the media’s story of what really happened last month.” We would applaud your honesty, but we doubt you realize that your own words admit the media reports are “what really happened” and Bristol’s post is merely “her story.”


Dear Ms. Crissie,

Are Banana Ghosts and Tangerine Pumpkins a Halloween breakfast treat? How do I make them?

Hauntingly Hungry in Blogistan

Dear Hauntingly Hungry,

Chef notes that Banana Ghosts and Tangerine Pumpkins are a healthful, delicious Halloween breakfast treat. To make Banana Ghosts, peel and slice bananas in half and use dark chocolate chips to make the ghostly eyes and mouth near the rounded end of each half. To make Tangerine Pumpkins, simply peel the tangerines and insert a bit of celery for the pumpkin stem. Bon appétit!



Sarah in AK; Bristol denied in her blog post; Willow agreed with the other witnesses; whataboutery; Hunter Biden was punished; every major media outlet covered Hunter Biden story; Josh Marshall’s insightful analysis.

Banana Ghosts and Tangerine Pumpkins.


Happy Sunday!