A skirt is not just a skirt

askirt.jpgI am looking for a pattern that will allow me to make the skirt above. I want this style with a 17′ to 19″ outseam. I haven’t found what I want online and do not have time to spend an hour in Joann’s in order to find it. So, if anyone has any suggestions, please give me a holler!

Undersea Cables Mysteriously Cut

NYTimes.com
Cut Undersea Cables Raise Questions of Safety
Tuesday February 5, 11:38 pm ET
By HEATHER TIMMONS

NEW DELHI — Four undersea communication cables have been cut in the last week, raising questions about the safety of the network that handles most of the world’s Internet and telephone traffic.

Most telecommunications specialists and cable operators say that sabotage seems unlikely, but no one knows specifically how the cables were damaged or if the incidents were related. The Egyptian government on Sunday dismissed one theory — that a ship traveling off course because of bad weather was responsible for severing the first two cables last week. No ships passed the area in the Mediterranean where the cables were located, the country’s Ministry of Communications said.

“This has been an eye-opener for us, and everyone in the telecom industry worldwide,” said Col. R.S. Parihar, the secretary of the Internet Service Providers Association of India. Today, the cause of the problem may have been an anchor, “but what if it is sabotage tomorrow?” Mr. Parihar asked.

“These are owned by private operators,” he said, “and there are no governments or armies protecting these cables.”

Most recently, a cable operated by Q-Tel of Qatar, which linked Qatar to the United Arab Emirates, was cut Friday. Communications in the Middle East have been hardest hit by the damage, though India, the United States and Europe have also experienced slowdowns.

Telecommunications operators have been trying to diversify the routes used for transmissions, said Alan Mauldin, research director with TeleGeography Research, particularly since an earthquake in Taiwan in 2006 disrupted service in Asia.

The cable network contains “choke points” — like those off the coast of Egypt and Singapore where many cables run, Mr. Mauldin said.

A spokesman for Q-Tel, Adel al Mutawa, said Qatar was operating at about 60 percent of telephone capacity, but that Internet and data transmission services were running at normal speed. Most telecommunications companies affected by the cuts in the last week rerouted service through other cables. Q-Tel will not know what caused the rupture in the Qatar-UAE Submarine Cable System until it sends a repair ship to pull the cable off the ocean floor, Mr. Mutawa said.

Undersea cables carry about 95 percent of the world’s telephone and Internet traffic, according to the International Cable Protection Committee, an 86-member group that works with fishing, mining and drilling companies to curb damage to submarine cables. Information travels faster and less expensively under the ocean than it does via satellite, and undersea cable transmission is gaining market share, the group said.

The Egyptinan Ministry of Communications and Information Technology said Sunday that no ships had passed through the area in the Mediterranean where two cables, known as the Sea Me We 4 and Flag’s Europe-Asia cable, were cut earlier last week.

“The site is a restricted area, which excludes the possibility that the malfunction resulted from a crossing ship,” the agency said. Internet efficiency in Egypt has reached about 70 percent, the statement said.

A third cable, known as Falcon, was cut Friday morning about 35 miles off the coast of Dubai in the Gulf. Wet, windy weather in some areas around the Gulf has shut ports and delayed ships.

Two of the damaged cables, the Flag Europe-Asia cable and Falcon, are owned by Flag Telecom, a subsidiary of the Indian conglomerate Reliance ADA Group.

Flag Telecom has never had two cables down at the same time in the region, a spokesman, Vineet Kumar, said. Flag Telecom’s network is one of the “newest in existence” so it would be unlikely the cables would break because of age or wear and tear.

“There has to be something very abnormal” for these cables to be cut, Mr. Kumar said, but added that the company would not know what that was until the cables are pulled up and repaired.

But he ruled out sabotage, noting that if someone was trying to cut off communications to the Middle East, they would have also damaged the other cables that are still operating.

The most interesting facet of this story is what I think I’ve realized today. Hotmail has been down since cable number five was mysteriously cut. Does this mean that the servers are based overseas? Curious. I don’t know how comfortable I am with that realization, correct or otherwise. It’s just too coincidental for my taste. I may revert to gmail afterall.

Ewwwww….

Okay I need some parenting help! My 17 month old keeps vomiting only at night. It isn’t at the end of a crying jag or the result of a night terror. We’ve taken him off of formula, and yet, he still vomits. He doesn’t have a fever. He acts perfectly normal. He doesn’t vomit at nap time which is in the exact same bed. What in the world could be the issue?

I just received a phone call from a dear friend. She’s been battling the big “C” for four years now, and she’s only 24 years old. That wasn’t the point to the phone call, though. The point was to tell me that her husband just told her he wants a divorce. He isn’t in love with her anymore. He’s a soldier and is scheduled to deploy in April. He wants her to stay in the house with him until then. Before this came up he said that although she will be facing a round of radiation and chemotherapy, he will not request to remain on rear detachment and stay stateside. Instead, he is more concerned about what the other soldiers will call him if he doesn’t deploy…for a third tour. Now he’s decided he wants a divorce? I’m starting to think that I just may know the most selfish man on the planet. We all know that my friend has no more than five to ten years left, and they have three small children. How in the world can any of this be explained to the girls? What does he plan to do when his soon to be ex-wife passes and suddenly he is faced with raising three girls on his own? I can make this promise publicly: As much as I care for him, I will do everything I can to ensure that the girls will have a stable home…with me. Enough is enough.

Report Card Update

We spoke with my daughter’s teacher about an hour ago. I suppose she was a bit intimidated, because she had another teacher there with her. The uninvited guest was actually a blessing, however. She imparted much insight as well as wisdom which was much appreciated. The teacher that needs to retire spoke up at the end, when my husband pointed out that our daughter would be better served if the assumption wasn’t that we were trying to attack them. She actually raised her voice at my husband and ignored the fact that I had apologized for writing something she felt was disrespectful. (Back story: We had an incident in which I felt my daughter was treated unfairly. I sent the teacher a note asking for her side of the story. If her story was the same as my daughter’s, then I asked for something to be returned to her. Somehow, this was offensive). My husband waited for me to say my peace in regard to the situation as I felt it was unfair of her to assume I was disrespecting her. I promise, she has not seen disrespect from me…yet. He then pointed out, again, that we need to work as a team. I don’t think any of this got through to the teacher. Thus, we will wait to see if things improve, but I am not holding my breath. At least we know that another of my daughter’s teachers is worthwhile. Maybe the one who needs to retire….will. I still feel that the teacher was wrong, especially on the words on her report card, but it turns out that she is simply an idiot, (one that teachers language-yikes), and that what she meant was quite poorly worded. She meant that my child focuses on herself and has difficulty stepping away from conflict and getting back on task. Wow. That was hard to word, wasn’t it? Yes, my child has issues, as does the teacher. Only 5 more months of school and counting….

Book Meme

Rules:

1. Pick up the nearest book (of at least 123 pages).
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people

From “A history of Private Life from Pagan Rome to Byzanrium” by Philippe Aries and Georges Duby, General Editors

These ideas persisited from archaic Greece and India down to Benjamin Constant and Charles Maurras. In Rome, citizens were divided, on the basis of wealth, into civic “orders” (simple citizens, decurions, equestrians, and senators). In establishing wealth, however, the census took account only of property and land.

I’d tag but that tagging’s been done! *lol*

The Ant and the Grasshopper

The Ant and the Grasshopper: 2 Scenarios

*OLD VERSION*:
The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away.

Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed.

The grasshopper has no food or shelter, so he dies out in the cold.

MORAL OF THE STORY: Be responsible for yourself!

************************************************************

*MODERN VERSION:*
The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away.

Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be warm and well fed while others are cold and starving.

CBS, NBC, PBS, CNN, and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food. America is stunned by the sharp contrast.

How can this be, that in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?

Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper and everybody cries when they sing, “its Not Easy Being Green.”

Jesse Jackson stages a demonstration in front of the ant’s house where the news stations film the group singing, “We shall overcome.” Jesse then has the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper’s sake.

Nancy Pelosi & John Kerry exclaim in an interview with Larry King that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and both call for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his fair share.

Finally, the EEOC drafts the Economic Equity and Anti-Grasshopper Act retroactive to the beginning of the summer. The ant is fined for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the government.

Hillary gets her old law firm to represent the grasshopper in a defamation suit against the ant, and the case is tried before a panel of federal judges that Bill Clinton appointed from a list of single-parent welfare recipients.

The ant loses the case.

The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the ant’s food while the government house he is in, which just happens to be the ant’s old house, crumbles around him because he doesn’t maintain it. The ant has disappeared in the snow. The grass hopper is found dead in a drug related incident and the house, now abandoned, is taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorize the once peaceful neighborhood.

MORAL OF THE STORY: Be very very careful how you vote.