Heading Home From Madison


In which we had a lovely time at Wiscon. I hope your Memorial Day weekend has been a fine one, and that (here in the US), you give a moment to ponder on those whom Memorial Day is meant to honor.


14 Comments on “Heading Home From Madison”

  1. Coming soon; a coffee table book by John Scalzi: – “Sites (sic) I have Been”. A tour-de-force of high quality photographs taken by the author showing the view from the window of hotel rooms he has stayed in.
    Artfully organised into chapters based around the predominant view, be it government buildings, lakes, parking buildings or the wall of the building the other side of an alleyway.
    Each photo comes with a brief description of where and why he was there along with a few of the entries from this Comments Section.

    I don’t think Tor will let this be one of John’s contracted books though.

  2. Wisconsin – a great place to live, except for Scott Walker and all his homies in the legislature. I lived in Sturgeon Bay for years of my youth, then several years in Milwaukee. Good times.

    On other fronts, how about a pic or two of the Scamperbeasts?

  3. Glad you enjoyed Wiscon! I had a lovely time at Balticon, and got a friend to buy Old Man’s War in the Dealer’s room. A librarian’s work never ends.

  4. “you give a moment to ponder on those whom Memorial Day is meant to honor”
    Those who lost their lives in war. As opposed to those who have served, who are honored on Veteran’s Day. Or those in the military, who are honored on Armed Forces day.

    I try not to point this out to the well-meaning who get it mixed up (it’s hard to politely point this out, online, to the well-intentioned) but I sure like it when I see someone get it right. Thanks, Scalzi.

  5. ” give a moment to ponder on those whom Memorial Day is meant to honor”

    **Do yourself a favor and DO NOT READ if you believe Memorial Day (or Veteren’s Day, or Armed Forces Day) are Very Important Holidays. In fact, I’m gonna go ahead and ROT13 my comment, so I can somewhat anonymously get it off my chest, without unduly upsetting anyone**

    V zvtug, ohg gur Vagrearg vf znxvat zr plavpny, ol gelvat gb znxr vg n zbeny boyvtngvba. Ol nqzbavfuvat gubfr jub “guvax vg’f whfg sbe oneorphrf”. Ol cbvagvat bhg, bfgragngvbhfyl, gur qvssreraprf orgjrra gur guerr – Guerr! – frcnengr ubyvqnlf sbphfvat ba gur zvyvgnel. Ol ersreevat gb rirel fvatyr qrnq fbyqvre nf n “snyyra ureb”.

    Frrzf yvxr gurer jnf n gvzr va zl yvsr jura, tvira gung V unir ab pybfr eryngvirf be sevraqf jub qvrq va gur zvyvgnel, V pbhyq trarenyyl yrg gur qnl tb haerznexrq hcba. Abj V srry yvxr V unir gb cnegvpvcngr va gur qrvsvpngvba bs gung juvpu V zbenyyl bccbfr.

  6. It was good to see you at WisCon, even if we didn’t get a chance to hang out.

    This Memorial Day, I remembered the fallen, and remind us that tragic death is the cost of war—and that’s why we should avoid it when possible.

  7. “give a moment to ponder on those whom Memorial Day is meant to honor.”

    The older I get, the more I think the only time the government cares about our troops is when it muzzles the conversation about whether the government squandered those peoples’ lives on a stupid war, when it encourages conflating criticism of war with disrespect for those who served and those who died.

  8. @docrocketscience: I can understand the internet making you cynical about the Memorial day, because you are right there are a lot “patriots” who have taking a bible thumping approach to American values. But I can’t agree with your disbelief about there being three separate holidays to our nations heroes. The three holidays do serve distinctly different purposes. Armed Forces Day celebrates those who currently serve in the Armed forces (you should be happy about this holiday because there used to be a separate holiday for each branch of service).
    There is Memorial Day which used to be known as Decoration Day. It was a time honored tradition dating back to the Civil War, a day when people would go to their local cemeteries and clean and decorate the headstones of all fallen heroes.
    Lastly is Veterans’ Day. It was formally known as Armistice Day and celebrated the end of WWI, the “war to end all wars”. Sadly it was not the war to end all wars. The department of Veterans Affairs had it re-branded as Veterans day after the Korean War. It is a day to honor those who have served, but are still living.
    Three holidays with three separate meanings. One for those are serving, one for those who have served and are still with us; and one for our heroes who did not make it home. I personally don’t feel three days is too much to ask for three different groups of people who share one commonality.
    You are right that the focus of each day should no be about fallen soldiers. Men and women of all branches of service have contributed to our nation’s safety. I wish Armed Forces Day received more publicity, and more was done for our active duty service members. I wish people would quit saying “happy Memorial Day” because I don’t see what is happy about it. Lastly I wish i actually got a day off of work and school on Veteran’s Day, because I feel like I earned that one.
    I apologize for my whining because you are right docrocketscience, there is enough trolling about these holidays which should be treated differently and with the respect and reverence they have earned.

  9. Dear DocRocket,

    I entirely sympathize with your feelings; if anything I am more extreme in that direction.

    I don’t feel particularly compelled to participate in the intent of the holidays. There is only the most minimal and pro-forma efforts by the culture to impose that on me. Unlike almost every other US holiday, where I am bombarded with incessant propaganda about the reasons for the seasons [ahem].

    I can pretty well ignore the political reasons for Memorial and Veterans Days with minimal mental effort; no one is shoving those reasons down my throat. If I think on them at all it merely reminds me that I’m looking at the enabling of dysfunctional and destructive behaviors and I am not obligated not make it my personal problem.

    ‘Course, I don’t know where you live nor in what subculture of the US. You may get flogged with this far, far worse than I.

    pax / Ctein

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