L is for Limericks and Lobbyists – The Alphabet Series

New Thoughts on Words


Aging & Attitude

The words limerick and lobbyist make me laugh.  A limerick is a nonsense poem that follows a strict rhyme scheme (AABBA). The intent is to be humorous and obscene, many consider a clean limerick an oxymoron. Edward Lear is credited with popularizing the amphibrachic meter.

A limerick needs to be bawdy if not dirty.  This video Grandma Sis’s dirty limerick  captures the art form wonderfully. Please note the yellow sectional couch wrapped in plastic they are sitting on.

Competing with Grandma Sis is not easy, but I hope my first attempt (using L words) will bring you a chuckle.

There once was a lady who worked in Londonderry

She was lazy, lascivious and ordinary

She dressed in the nude

And was extremely rude

But somehow was paid anyway

    Lobbying is the practice of trying to influence decisions made by government officials. President Ulysses S. Grant’s  frequent visits to the Willard Hotel lobby to enjoy a cigar and brandy popularized the term. The hotel is a short walk from the White House. Washington wheelers and dealers knew where to find him and  pay for his drinks.

I have come up with this ditty.

There once was a President who had a hobby

He liked to hang out in the Willard Hotel lobby

When he was there he’d collapse in a chair

Light up a cigar and blow smoke into the air

And listen to political folly

My next limerick hopefully captures more recent shenanigans.

In 1995 Congress strengthened lobby laws

Although compromised, registration still has flaws

With a flick of a pen, Super PAC’s are in

Lobbyist’s spend a fifth of their time drinking gin

We still hear politicians clapping their paws

If you would like to try writing  a limerick click here limerick poem.

Please share your efforts in the comments section. It was fun but harder than I thought.

….just saying

White House Tour Slideshow

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Aging & Attitude

   The events of the past few weeks are disturbing and sobering, and I have decided to enjoy the holidays and forget about falling off any cliff. Hopefully you will do the same. Please check out this u-tube video of my White House tour that I have but together. Come to find out you can take pictures in the White House during Christmas but none of us had a camara. We met Dan and Lynn who had a cell phone and became our new best friends when they offered to mail us copies. Thank you Dan, the pictures are beautiful.

You can read “What I Want for Christmas” here.

                            … just saying Merry Christmas

A White House Christmas

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 Aging & Attitude

My eyes swell with tears, and throat chokes with emotion as I read the letter confirming our Christmas tour date at the White House. Ten days later inside the White House, I am misty the entire visit, and once back home, can barely respond to inquiries of “How was your trip?”

It is not just about the decorations, or First Family’s dog, Bo, a life size replica, made from chicken wire and eighteen thousand one-inch black and white pom-poms .

It is an experience.

At the East Wing entrance, you walk past snowflake wreaths into a foyer of red, white and blue, and instantly feel more than a guest. The tree in this foyer is a tribute to military families. The gold star ornaments pay respect to those who made the ultimate sacrifice. You can write a note of thanks to service men and women. www.JOININGFORCES.GOV.

Visitors are welcome to wander through the nine magnificently decorated rooms and two hallways until you tire of being there, or preparations for a state function start. On this day, a luncheon and afternoon tea are scheduled, so guests will vacate by 11a.m.

We have plenty of time to soak up and absorb the glitter, glitz, and magic.

The theme for Holidays at the White House 2012 is Joy to All and HGTV’s special programhighlights the planning and process of decorating the People’s House. Please click on these links, you will see Bo Obama and the magical decorations. Eighty volunteers spent two to three-days creating joyous splendor throughout the White House. All rooms are decorated but only the State floor is viewed by the general public.

My favorite, a tree in the Book Sellers area, glass bubble ornaments in primary colors; orange, red, purple, blue and green, cascade around the branches. The circular simplicity leave an elegant effect and a lasting impression.

And it gets better.

The East Garden room is a children’s wonderland of gingerbread wreaths and “Boflakes” hung on trees. The Library pays tribute to past Presidents, and First Families. The China Room is set to enjoy a holiday dinner. The Vermeil Room celebrates past First Ladies. The East Room displays American folk art. The Green Room reflects on the joy of a winter garden, The Blue Room honors troops, veterans and military families, The Red Room remembers First Lady Dolly  Madison and her famous Wednesday-evening receptions with cranberry floral arrangements.  The State Dining Room filled with vibrant holiday tones displays the 300-pound gingerbread house.

But it is not just about the decorations.

It is about American pride.

It is about the Princeton Tigertones singing acappela in the North Entrance Hall. An excited 2012-12-04 09.22.48preschooler yelling “I found it” and pointing at a red Bo Obama glass ornament hung low on a tree.

It is about Abraham Lincoln poised above the State Dining room fireplace, his face lined with evidence, that all men are created equal.

2012-12-04 09.07.12You can hear JFK’s poignant request, “Ask not what your country can do for you, but what can you do, for your country.”

It is about meeting three Marines on the Metro, who are returning from Arlington Cemetery and a service for fallen unit members. We have a light discussion about their medals and uniforms. As the doors open, I struggle to say “Be Safe,” before leaving. The soldier’s eyes meet mine and revealed war’s reality but he replies gently, “We try, Maam.”

A White House Christmas tour is not just about the decorations.                                 

                                                                  …just saying