Monday Morning Open Thread

Karol Sheinin at AlarmingNews:

In 1977, the year I was born and the year my father and many other Jews left the Soviet Union (my mother and I left in 1978, my grandmother and great-aunt left in 1976), the Soviet propaganda machine began circulating a rumor. It went, roughly: life in America is so terrible that the old people eat cat food.

This was…perplexing.

People didn’t quite get it: they have food specifically made for cats in America? What a country!

A lot of things about America remained beyond their comprehension.

My grandma said that cat food isn’t bad if you put Ketchup on it.

Let’s hope there is some interesting news today. This thread will have to do until there is.

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11 Responses to Monday Morning Open Thread

  1. elliesmom says:

    The other day at TCH we were talking about saving energy, and the cost and benefits of installing solar panels came up. My son and his wife had panels installed last year at this time so when we met them for breakfast out yesterday, I asked them how it’s working.

    First of all, they are leasing the panels. They don’t own them. There were absolutely no installation costs. They even got a free iPad for signing up. Because they don’t own them, they were not eligible for the government’s energy rebate, but given it cost them nothing to have them installed and the maintenance is totally the responsibility of the company that installed them, they didn’t feel they lost anything. The lease cost is $20 a month. My son’s electric bill on a budget plan had been $150 a month before the panels. They have room air conditioners for the summer, run a space heater 24/7 in the winter in their laundry room, and cook and heat water with electricity. It’s just the two of them, and they are careful about turning things off when they aren’t using them, but they don’t unplug anything. Since the panels, they have been running a net negative bill all summer. The electric company doesn’t send you a check. They just credit your bill. Going into the winter, the kids have $150 dollars in credits built up. Last winter they had no credits to spend yet, but their bills dropped to $50 to $75 dollars a month. So to do the math. Their electric bills pre-panels were $1800 a year. After the panels, going high and using $75 a month for 5 months, $20 for 3, and gaining $150 over the other 4, their electric bill for the year is now $285 + the 240 for the panel lease or @$525 for a net saving of $1275 a year. Our roof is situated on our property the same as theirs, and we have the same 220 days of sun they do. I’m calling the company today. They said the only downside of leasing is that the company puts the people buying instead of leasing ahead in the line for installation so it might be several months before they come.

    • NICE! I honestly wish we had that option here- but with less than 200 sunny days a year- not feasible.
      And the regulations for installing wind are ridiculous. Just as bad as if we wanted a gas rig.

      • yttik says:

        Solar panels don’t necessarily need direct sun. I mean people have them up here and in Alaska. I imagine they aren’t as efficient as they are in Arizona, but the sun’s energy comes through even on dreary days.

    • cj says:

      Wow. I can’t do it because I’m leasing my home right now, but I passed on the info to my sons.

      You would think that out here in AZ every roof would be solar panelled, that there would be acres & acres of panels papering the vast swath of desolate desert. Hell, if it was up to me, I’d line the highways with panels, then sell the profit to the rest of the country & subsidize the cost of energy for everyone living in AZ.

  2. gram cracker says:

    About cat food…

    My dad hated cats but begrudgingly allowed me to have one. Well you know how cats like to cat around so it wasn’t long before there were kittens. Mom never bought name brand foods for us, so the kittens got the cheapest canned food mom could find.

    The food stank so bad that after they got their fill the kittens would instinctively make motions with their paws like they were trying to cover up their sh*t. Mom and I got a good laugh watching them do this.

    Dad had worked night shit and had gotten used to eating his lunch in the middle of the night. So most nights he would raid the frig in search of leftovers for his midnight snack. One morning I couldn’t find the leftover cat food I was sure I had put in the frig the night before. I asked mom about it and it dawned on us that dad must have eaten it during the night! Sure enough the little can was in the recycle bin.

    Mom made me promise not to tell dad that he had eaten the cat food. We were afraid of what he might do to the kittens if he found out. Dad went to his grave never knowing about eating that smelly nasty cat food. Mom started buying better smelling cat food.

    By the way mom was a great cook. Her leftovers never smelled like cat food. Dad seemed to eat in his sleep. One night he even buttered his flashlight like it was an ear of corn.

    • elliesmom says:

      Elliesdad hates the smell of fish so I buy Maxine beef and poultry cat food. One day when I was out of food for her, I opened a can of people tuna fish for her, and she stuck her nose up at it. She ate Ellie’s kibble instead.

  3. votermom says:

    People didn’t quite get it: they have food specifically made for cats in America? What a country!

    Yeah, when I was I kid we had dogs (one at a time) and a cat. They always ate our leftovers.
    One time when I was little I remember we had liver with onions (ugh) for dinner which apparently was irresistible to our dog. Since there was as strict no feeding scraps at the table rule, our dog went to the front door and started barking which is what he does when there’s a visitor. So we all got up to see who it was (we didn’t get many visitors), and while we were doing that, the dog dashed back to the table and wolfed down as much liver as he could get. My mom was furious but us kids thought it was hilarious.
    I think that’s when the the rule about him staying outside the house at mealtimes started.

  4. yttik says:

    The cat food rumor is kind of funny because times sure have changed. Today cat food is expensive and nobody would eat it if they were trying to save money. Our whole pet industry has gone bananas, so people are now spending more on their pets then on their people.

  5. votermom says:

    This made me laugh:
    ‘Downton Abbey’ vs. ‘The Walking Dead’

  6. Piracetam says:

    The price the Soviet Union paid for this great achievement remains staggering. It included the destruction of all free enterprise (business organizations) in both town and country. The transformation of Soviet agriculture in the early 1930s into collectives (groups of managed farms) tremendously damaged the country’s food production. Living standards were drastically lowered at first, and more than a million people died of starvation. Meanwhile, Stalin jailed and executed vast numbers of party members, especially the old revolutionaries and the leading figures in many other areas. Stalin created a new kind of political system characterized by severe police control, strengthening of the government, and personal dictatorship. Historians consider his government one of history’s worst examples of totalitarianism, or having complete political control with no opposition. In world affairs the Stalinist system became isolationist, meaning the country moved away from building relations with foreign nations.

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