Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Big Ticket

Kevin McHale proves he still bleeds Celtic green.

My NBA guide claims that McHale retired from the Celtics in 1993, but apparently that's a misprint. How else could you explain his decision to trade Kevin Garnett to Boston for the Al Jefferson pu pu platter deluxe? Just five weeks ago, McHale and Minnesota couldn't close a potential deal in which they received Jefferson and Boston's No. 5 pick. Now? They're settling for Jefferson (a potential franchise player), Ryan Gomes (an intangibles guy who's useless on a bad team), Bassy Telfair (a year away from signing in Italy), Gerald Green (a homeless man's J.R. Smith), Theo Ratliff's expiring deal, a 2009 lottery-protected No. 1 pick (congrats on picking in the mid-20s) and the return of Minny's future No. 1 that was stupidly included in the Ricky Davis/Mark Blount-Wally Szczerbiak trade.

If I was the Celtics, I still would have preferred to land one of the top two picks in the draft. Hard to argue that this is a terrible plan B though. Minnesota fans, commence with teeth-gnashing.


So we have 360 people in custody and 385 have been released with no charge.

I have no doubt that there are some dangerous people in that prison. But doesn't the fact that over half were detained for a few years, apparently without any good evidence, create a situation where it is harder to keep the dangerous ones on the government's word alone? Of course it does.

Monday, July 30, 2007

WWI Museum

I made to the WWI Museum at the Liberty Memorial for the first time yesterday. Incredible. It was easily one of the best history museums I have been to (my mom was a teacher, I've been to a lot). I'm not sure if there has been a lot of publicity that I have missed, but there really ought to be more.

The information is logically put together, the technology features actually add something (instead of just showing off technology), and the displays are impressive.

Be prepared to be both uplifted and crushed by human nature. And keep an eye out so you don't get slapped squarely in the face by the fact that most things never change.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Holy Cow!

The Royals just completed a sweep of the Rangers, they are over .500 since June 1, they've broken into the upper half in runs scored, and the pitchers are knocking on the door of the top half in ERA. We're not ready to make a World Series run, but let's give credit where it is due. Things seem headed in the right direction.

Why Not to Elect People Who Don't Believe in Government, Part 9,473

Does the world have serious health challenges? Not if those challenges don't align with Bush policy.

Carmona told lawmakers that, as he fought to release the document, he was "called in and again admonished . . . via a senior official who said, 'You don't get it.' " He said a senior official told him that "this will be a political document, or it will not be released."
Who might such a senior official have been? Why it was a Latin American history expert and godson of G.H.W. Bush who happens to be in charge of the Office of Global Health Affairs in the Department of Health and Human Services.

Not to worry though. Assuming the Senate cooperates, the chosen one will be out of the health game and into the international relations game. He's been nominated to be the ambassador to Mozambique. They probably don't have any health issues, right?

Friday, July 27, 2007

Long Live the K

I had the opportunity to haul myself across the state last night for a Cardinals-Cubs game. I wanted to go despite my kneejerk reaction against the Cardinals. I even rooted for them while I was there (I'm not proud). The reason I wanted to go was to see what St. Louis got in their new stadium while we got stuck renovating Kauffman.

What I found was that we have the best stadium in the state despite the fact that it is somewhere around 30 years older than its competition. The new Busch Stadium is in the middle of downtown St. Louis, but it looks an awful lot like a strip mall in suburbia. Like every other stadium built in the past 15 years, they designed the stadium to look like it was built sometime before WWII. That's fine. I remember going to Camden Yards a couple of years after it opened and being wowed by a stadium that looked like the same kind of place my grandpa would have gone to as a kid. Baseball has tradition, and so it makes sense in many cases to use that as the driving idea. Apparently over half of the teams in MLB agree with that sentiment.

But Busch stadium takes tradition and gives it the faux-rock-on-the-front-of-a-new-suburban-house treatment. I talked to one of my good friends from St. Louis and he said they built it on the cheap. It looks like it. For those of you from KC, think about Zona Rosa and you have the idea. The decided to do the bare minimum to get the idea across and it shows.

When you are trying to create an environment that transports people to another place or time, details matter. An example is the railings at Busch Stadium. The railings around the fronts of the seats are a wrought iron that looks traditional. But the hand railings going up the stairs are round brushed aluminum and would look appropriate in front of a Target or Best Buy.

So St. Louis spent $346 million to get a stadium that looks like a bigger version of what the Cardinal's AA affiliate in Springfield built. Meanwhile in KC, we will be spending $250 million to bring Kauffman into the 21st century. Aside from the question of whether communities should be spending that kind of money on private enterprise, I like our option better.

(There were two cool things about the stadium in St. Louis. One is the new era Jumbotron, which we will have when we renovate. The other is a cool view of the Arch, which we won't. On the other hand, they don't have the largest publicly funded fountain in the world.)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

CSpan Will Soon Be Known as Comedy Central 2

When Gonzalez is on the hill, funny stuff is going to happen. Of course to enjoy the humor you have to find our government's devolution to a Monte Python skit funny.

Here is a montage of yesterday's testimony from TPM.

My favorite part is when the Attorney General can't remember how many attorneys he fired either "with cause or without cause." Also well done is his straight refusal to answer a question from Senator Schumer.

Priceless stuff.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Sunday Talk Shows

Why is the debate on the Sunday talk shows between reporters whose job it is to at least attempt impartiality and right-wing pundits whose job it is to pundit right-wingedly.

Meet the Press Roundtable:

David Brooks -- Conservative Columnist for the New York Times
Bob Woodward -- Reporter
Stephen Hayes -- Senior Writer at conservative publication The Weekly Standard

Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace

Brit Hume -- Conservative TV Pundit (technically I suppose he is an "anchor" and should thus be considered a neutral guest, but come on)
Mara Liasson -- NPR reporter
Bill Kristol -- Conservative columnist and pundit
Juan Williams -- NPR reporter

I didn't see the other two shows, but I'll bet George Will was on ABC.

The question is why the debate must be between people who are trying to convey facts and people who want to push the right-wing agenda. Doesn't that just enforce the right-wing concept of a biased media and degrade journalism all at once?

Weekend Eating, The Challenge Continues

Three local places earned my dollars this weekend. The often mentioned Hien Vuong was one. I also found my way to Governor Stumpy's, which made me a nice Saturday lunch of a BLT and fries.

On Sunday morning, we made it to Eggtc, a breakfast joint apparently owned by the same people who own Minsky's. I had a breakfast skillet and a chocolate chip pancake. Didn't have to eat again until 7 last night. You should check it out, but I would recommend getting there early. There was a 30 minute wait at 10 am.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

So This is Why I Still Can't Email My Parents an Attachment

This is an entire post from Kevin Drum:

BROADBAND....President Bush, March 2004:

This country needs a national goal for broadband technology, for the spread of broadband technology. We ought to have a universal, affordable access for broadband technology by the year 2007.

Yeah, cheap universal broadband would be great. So whatever happened to that? Robert McChesney and John Podesta told the story last year in the Monthly:

[Bush and FCC chairman Kevin Martin] have made no progress toward these goals; in fact, they have rewarded their corporate cronies for maintaining high prices, low speeds and lackluster innovation. Federal policies have not merely failed to correct our broadband problems, they have made them worse. Instead of encouraging competition, the FCC has allowed DSL providers and cable companies to shut out competitors by denying access to their lines. And whereas the Japanese government encourages individual towns to set up their own "Community Internet," Washington has done nothing. Fourteen states in the United States now have laws on the books restricting cities and towns from building their own high-speed Internet networks. No wonder America is falling behind its Asian competitors.

Huh. Imagine that. The incumbent captains of industry didn't like the idea of cheap broadband so the White House decided not to do anything about it. Shocking, isn't it?

And in the meantime, my parents live on a Missouri State Highway with DSL service stopped a mere two miles from their house. They have been told it is coming for four years. Maybe the phone company guy believed the president.

Evening Question

Is it possible to start a war in two hours?

We might have an opportunity to find out.

"The White House said Cheney will probably be in charge for about 2 1/2 hours while Bush recovers from the effects of the sedative."

Cue the Imperial March

I know that there has been a seemingly endless string of these assertions of supreme power, but this one somehow seems extra sinister.

Bush administration officials unveiled a bold new assertion of executive authority yesterday in the dispute over the firing of nine U.S. attorneys, saying that the Justice Department will never be allowed to pursue contempt charges initiated by Congress against White House officials once the president has invoked executive privilege.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Extra For Sure

It was already certain that Sonics were never coming to KC. Now it is also official. What's the best shot for a hoops team now? Grizzlies? Magic? I won't be holding my breath.

The Year in Music Rolls On

As I have noted on several occasions now, 2007 is turning out to be a tremendous year for music. Great albums just keep coming. The latest is Spoon's Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga. I was a late arrival to the Spoon party. The first album I heard was their previous one, Gimme Fiction. I've since become a big fan.

So I was pretty excited about Ga Ga. Let me start by saying Ga Ga is no Gimme Fiction. Gimme Fiction is one of those albums that sets a mood and feels like one long piece with different segments. Ga Ga is more of a collection of varying feelings and sounds. Fortunately, many of those are quite good.

"The Underdog" will probably be in the running for my song of the year. It has horns, hand claps, and a hook that refuses to leave your head. There are the classic Spoon sounding "You Got Yr. Cherry Bomb" and "Don't Make Me a Target". And there are some moments where the band seems to be channeling the Clash.

It may not be Gimme Fiction, but it is one of the best albums so far this year.

The other album I was excited about was Interpol's Our Love to Admire. I started listening to it last week and was disappointed. It had all the elements that made the first two Interpol albums interesting, but somehow it just didn't work for me. I was ready to declare it the first real disappointment of the year.

But then a funny thing happened. I left the tracks on my listening list at work. And about the 4th day something clicked. Suddenly, I was picking up all the weird little flourishes that constitute a creeper. A creeper is one of those albums where you hear something a little different every time you listen (Spoon albums are usually of this variety). The band has tried a lot of different things within the somewhat restrictive framework of their sound.

There may not be a single song as good as the highlights from the first two albums (though "Rest My Chemistry" may get there), but the experimenting means that there aren't songs that get lost either. I'm not ready to make final judgement, but things appear to be headed in the right direction.

A Man of My Word

Yesterday, I accepted Dan's challenge to eat good food at local restaurants. I wasted no time. Last night, I got carry-out from Pangea on 39th street. I had a Bacon-Brie-Apple-and Arugula sandwich with Spanish Chips. More fancy pants than what I usually go for, but it was a great meal. If you don't love garlic, the chips might be a bit rough on you but I enjoyed them. The sandwich was a great blend of salty, tangy, bitter, and creamy.

While there, I learned they have beer pairing events and happy hour specials.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

A Worthy Cause

Over at Gone Mild, Dan is trying to save The Mango Room from extinction. The Mango Room is a local restaurant that has been threatened by the construction and delays surrounding the Power and Light District. It's hard to get people to come in to your place when there is heavy equipment and a port-a-potty parked outside apparently.

Dan then lays out this challenge:

I challenge each of you - starting now and continuing through the month of August, to seek out Kansas City restaurants whenever you eat out. Find a Winstead's instead of a Burger King. Blow a bucket of money at Plaza III instead of at Morton's. Come back and comment on your experiences and recommendations (and disappointments, too). If commenters participate, I'll bump this to the top of the page for the duration. If you are a fellow blogger, post something on your site about your favorite local places, and encourage your readers to share their thoughts on your blog. Let's see if we can save the Mango Room and the other gems that make Kansas City different from Indianapolis or Milwaukee or Akron.
Well, I know it seems awfully brave, but I accept the challenge to eat at some of the city's best restaurants. I'll do it for the people.

Here are some of the great restaurants I already love:

Hien Vuong at the River Market -- Showered with praise in this post.

Big Momma's in Raytown -- They serve sandwiches on giant dinner rolls. If I need to explain why that is good, you may not want to take my recommendations. They also have possibly the best cinnamon rolls I have ever tasted.

Le Fou Frog -- Everything is fantastic. I always end up trying something I never thought I might even consider. Plus, they have the best custom Roasterie blend in town.

The Mango Room -- Macaroni and Cheese. Go for that if for nothing else.

Cupini's in Westport -- They just expanded their menu, and they have some great Italian salads. I go to the one on 43rd street near State Line, but I understand there are also locations downtown, in Liberty, and in Lee's Summit.

Korma Sutra in Westport -- Chicken Moqolai is creamy, spicy, and delicious. Good options for vegetarians. (If you are a vegetarian also try Udipi at 81st and Metcalf.)

Pierpont's in Union Station -- This one isn't exactly a small family run shop, but it's still local. There is not a prettier restaurant in town. And they make the finest Old Fashioned on earth.

Shirley's in Grandview -- Classic American breakfast. They make their own jelly.

Lucia's Taqueria in Independence -- The taco's are double-shelled and covered in what appears to be Parmesan cheese. Whatever it is, it's hard to beat.

Bo Ling's in the Board of Trade building-- Go on weekends for the Dim Sum. It's good and fun.

Harry's Country Club at the River Market -- Actually it is pretty inexpensive, but the bar tab usually ups things. I challenge anyone to find a better grilled cheese.

The Classic Cup at the Plaza -- I've only been for Sunday brunch. They do everything from a carbonara to dutch pancakes filled with fruit. It is all very good.

Blue Koi on 39th -- Try the spicy chili pepper wontons.

Any of Kansas City's fine barbecue establishments -- If the restaurant looks a little scuzzy, you are in the right place. It's hard to get bad barbecue here.

Evening Question

As I ready myself for slumber there is a question that continues to perplex.

Would Mike Vick support the electrocution of quaterbacks who can't complete 60% of their passes?

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

The Beat Goes On

Not much to say about these anymore. This time it is former Surgeon General Richard Carmona talking about the politicization of his office. You wish it would seem a little more surprising.

I also saw a clip of Carmona with Wolf Blitzer on the Daily Show. In that clip, Carmona said he wasn't allowed to support the Special Olympics because the Kennedy's were involved too heavily. It's hard to imagine another situation where that would even be conceivable. Not hard to believe with these guys though.

Not That You Didn't Already Know This

... but here are the details. Best part:

One of the first visitors, on Feb. 14, was James J. Rouse, then vice president of Exxon Mobil and a major donor to the Bush inauguration; a week later, longtime Bush supporter Kenneth L. Lay, then head of Enron Corp., came by for the first of two meetings. On March 5, some of the country's biggest electric utilities, including Duke Energy and Constellation Energy Group, had an audience with the task force staff.

British Petroleum representatives dropped by on March 22, one of about 20 oil and drilling companies to get meetings. The National Mining Association, the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America and the American Petroleum Institute were among three dozen trade associations that met with Cheney's staff, the document shows.

The Cheney team met with environmental groups once. That was after 40 meetings with energy interests had produced the initial draft of the task force.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Sometimes the Numbers Do Tell the Whole Story

Have an argument with any die hard conservative that somehow hasn't yet turned on the president, and you will assuredly at some point hear a rebuttal something along the lines of "Well, when Bill Clinton was in office he did the exact same thing."

In some cases they are right. While that doesn't constitute much of an argument for whether the current president is right or wrong, it does put their opponent in a more awkward position. But often they are flat out wrong. The latest example comes in these numbers from Harper's Index:

Number of Bush White House officials who are authorized to discuss pending criminal cases with the Justice Department: 711

Number of Clinton officials who were: 4

Percentage of federal inspectors general appointed by Bush and Clinton, respectively, who had prior audit experience: 36, 66

Percentage who held some political position prior to their appointment: 45, 22

And two more numbers that don't have a Clinton parallel but are appalling nonetheless:

Number of Bush appointees who regulate industries they used to represent as lobbyists: 85

Number of the five directors of a No Child Left Behind reading program who had financial ties to the curricula the developed: 4

Wednesday, July 11, 2007


I admit I am a little conflicted about all of the investigation in the capitol. It's not that I don't think it is warranted, but I'm just not sure how much good it is doing or whether it will ever amount to anything. I'd hate to think all of this goes on and the ultimate outcome is that the Democrats just wasted time they could have used to put important issues before the American public.

But then I see an account like the one today of Sara Taylor testifying before a Senate committee. If you read something like this account and can't be angered by the blatant contempt for our laws and institutions, then you should probably read it again. Here is a pretty good representation of the whole story.

Taylor's slippery definition of what comes under the Fielding doctrine and what doesn't is a migraine waiting to happen. Seemingly, love songs to the wonders of the ex-interim U.S. attorney from Arkansas, Tim Griffin, are not
privileged (he was an "exceptionally well-qualified candidate"), but the origins of the plan to fire U.S. attorneys are off limits. Complaints about the ousted U.S. attorney from New Mexico, David Iglesias, are not privileged, but the number of calls she received from people in political positions with complaints is privileged. Then it isn't. Composition of the White House Judicial Selection Committee? Privileged. Her opinion that there was "absolutely no wrongdoing done by anybody in the White House"? Not privileged.

Contempt of Congress? How about contempt for everyone?

It's The Peter Principle, Not Me

It can't be good when the only two implications of your argument are

a) that you're a liar.


b) that you are much too incompetent to have your job.

Either way, how can your boss conclude that you are doing a great job?

He can have no shame whatsoever, that's how.

All-Star Game

I almost forgot to mention the All-Star game.

Neither of the two Missouri players saw the field. Awesome.

The Willie Mays thing at the beginning was really nice. Interesting to watch a guy who is as deservedly reviled as Barry Bonds deal with someone he has a true fondness for. Just a reminder that everyone has a decent side.

Watching the game you felt like the American League was clearly the better team. The fact that the National League had such a good chance to take it reminds one of small things that decide baseball games. Actually it reminds me why basketball is really the only one of the major three sports where the best team usually has better than 80% odds of winning thier respective title. Too many weird things can happen in one football game or a seven game baseball series.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Great Lyrics

I went to see Cracker at the Crossroads last Friday. That afforded my friend Dan the opportunity to share one of his favorite lyrics. It is from the Cracker song "Get Off This":

"... no one knew your name and you were pompous."

It is a great lyric and it got me to thinking about other great lyrics. There are a bunch out there. Here are two of my favorites from albums this year.

The White Stripes - Icky Thump - "Little Cream Soda"

"Now my mind is filled with rubber tires and forest fires and whether I'm a liar and lots of other situations where I don't know what to do, at which time God screams to me "There's nothing left for me to tell you.""

The National - Boxer - "Start A War"

"You were always weird, but I never had to hold you by the edges like I do now."

Apparently Not a Joke

It would be funnier if it wasn't true. This is the headline at the top of the Washington Post homepage right now:

Bush Plans To Stress Next Phase In Iraq War

Makes sense, I thought. A report is supposedly due out soon saying the Iraqis aren't meeting any of their goals, the Democrats seem to be finally mounting some courage, and Republicans seem to even be coming to their senses. So what changes exactly have all of these considerations prompted in our president's plans?

The first paragraph of the story:

President Bush, facing a growing Republican revolt against his Iraq policy, has rejected calls to change course but will launch a campaign emphasizing his intent to draw down U.S. forces next year and move toward a more limited mission if security conditions improve, senior officials said yesterday.
We won't actually do anything different than we have been doing, but we will remind everyone that if all of the things that have continued not to happen do in fact happen, then we will do what he said we would do all along.


Friday, July 6, 2007

Give Him Points for Creativity

Jon Tester is trying out a new rationale for ending the Iraq war:

Ticking off the three main reasons he believes we went to Iraq -- to search for weapons of mass destruction, to get rid of Saddam Hussein and to give the Iraqis a chances at free and fair elections -- the freshman from Big Sky country sees blue skies and rates the operation a success.

"Our work in Iraq is done... It's time for American troops to stop refereeing a centuries-old civil war and come home after a job well done," he said. It's not hard to see how that rosy view of things can be seductive to Democrats looking for a way to end the war while at the same time not appearing chicken or defeatist.

I'm not sure how the other Democrats could swing around to this argument without looking plainly ridiculous. Of course, plain ridiculousness hasn't really been stopping anything else in Washington recently. Maybe it would work after all.

Run For Your Lives, It's National Healthcare!

One thing that has always struck me about the right's talking heads is there ability to take some ancillary, mostly insignificant piece of information and turn that into a justification for any position they have ever taken.

The latest is the equation of socialized medicine and terrorism. I heard this point on a local talk radio show earlier this week and foolishly assumed that it was just the local yokel going to lengths that would embarrass even the most craven national pundit. I should have known that it was just the party line.

Fox News is, of course, leading the way:

...Indeed, Bowyer added, "[I]f one of your guys is a jihadist, if one of your doctors is spending all the time online reading Osama bin Laden fatwas, someone's going to notice that. But the National Health Service is more like the post office, you know there's a lot of anonymity, it's easy to hide in the bureaucracy."

To which FNC personality Cavuto responded, "The fact that we may be looking to go this way in the United States, you're saying one of the potential consequences -- without judging national health care one way or the other -- is that this could happen. We have to be at least aware of the distinct possibility that in such a system, we would have to recruit outside doctors, and where we're getting the most of them these days seems to be from the Muslim world."

The headline at the bottom of the screen throughout the whole exchange is "National Healthcare: Breeding Ground For Terror?" A good summary of the whole thing is at the Washington Monthly blog.

Are there examples of this patent silliness on the left?

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Mr. Obvious?

A friend sent me this news analysis from the AP. It hardly qualifies as analysis since it pretty much just states the obvious.

The hypocrisy is unpardonable. President Bush's decision to commute the sentence of a convicted liar brought out the worst in both parties and politics.

On the hand, the number of people who would (and do) argue otherwise suggests maybe it isn't so obvious at all.


Considering my firm belief that KC has a sports curse, I should have known better than to entrust my 4th of July expereince to our beleagured teams.

A summary of the day:

Wizards lose 1-0 to D.C. United. They have taken over 40 shots in their last two games and come out of it with one goal. Eddie Johnson can't get back soon enough.

Royals lose 4-0 to Seattle. A night after scoring 17 runs, the Royals never threaten until the 9th. Alex Gordon ends the threat with a double-play ball.

Royals fireworks extravaganza fizzles. Apparently, no one covered anything during the rain earlier in the evening. It was a a perfect encapsulation of the day and the recent history of Kansas City sports.

(Kudos to the Royals for making ticket stubs to the game rain checks for any future game. They can't fix the 4th for the kids, but at least they didn't just shrug their shoulders.)

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

A Poem About D.C.

I don't think this blog has enough creative writing on it.

They Built It On a Swamp You Know

Marble, limestone, 84 shades of grass,
Much further from the Capitol to the memorials than you might think.
Watch the Segway herd.
Those modern Roman chariots carrying visor-clad gladiators,
They will take you down.
I'm having my doubts about this guy offering French prostitutes.
No beret, no baguette.
No, I don't think he is French.
Another man holds a sign protesting Prince Charles.
You protest where you can I guess.
From what I have read Washington wasn't a big prick.
Why did they memorialize him that way?
Lincoln's hat is displayed next to Kermit the Frog.
Come on, put the hat on the frog.

Monday, July 2, 2007

More Than Meets The Eye

Or so it seems.

As a child of the 80's I have no choice but to go watch Transformers when it comes out this week. This was going to happen against my better judgement since Michael "Pearl Harbor" Bay was directing. But miracle of miracles, it seems to be getting decent marks thus far. Maybe Bay has some how recaptured the magic of The Rock.

And they got the original voice for Optimus Prime. You almost can't ask more than that.

Apostasy and Fresh Asparagus

I love living in the city. My wife and I walk lots of places. When we do drive we get places within a few minutes. We meet interesting people we'd never find elsewhere. I like the fact that every street corner doesn't look the same and that you don't have to walk across 60 acres of parking lot to get from one store to another. I feel good about the fact that I'm not burning a bunch of gasoline.

This weekend I was reminded how inferior the city can be in small ways. I was way down south at 135th street for breakfast yesterday morning. We decided that since we were already down there, we might as well go grocery shopping. At the risk of being hyperbolic, it was magical. The store was clean, the parking lot was clean, it was cheaper, I could maneuver through the aisles, the produce was at least 3 times better, and (most importantly) they actually had everything in stock. Anyone who has ever been to the Sunfresh in Westport, either of the Brookside stores, or God forbid, an Apple Market can tell you that none of them fit this description in whole (or largely even in part).

So despite my general worry about the environment, my aversion to urban sprawl, and who knows what other suddenly dispensable beliefs, I will be going back to the nether-regions for my groceries. I can't help it. I guess I'd rather be a hypocrite with completely checked off grocery list and a decent bag of apples.

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