Susie and I returned home last night at 11:30 p.m., massively jet-lagged and exhausted after a trip made much more difficult by Continental Airlines [never again!] Jim, who tells us that his birthday is on Christmas Day, asks about our willingness to leave our cat, Christmas Eve. By the way, Jim, I assume that you spent your entire childhood convinced, no matter what anyone said, that you did not get as many presents as you would have received had you been born in June. I suppose young Jesus felt the same way, except of course that anytime he was born would have been Christmas. We have a wonderful pet-sitter, Eric Bradeson, who comes in every other day, feeds her, and gives her her subcutaneous infusions because of her renal failure. This time, despite Eric's ministrations [he actually called us in Paris to discuss the problem], Christmas Eve had lost a lot of weight, which stressed Susie and me no end.
The big political news is that Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry failed to get the 10,000 signatures required to put them on the Virginia Primary ballot. I think this means that Gingrich is toast, not so much because of the inability to accumulate any delegates in Virgina, but because it demonstrates that he in fact has no real campaign organization. [By comparison, the folks seeking to recall Governor Walker have alrerady paassed the 500,000 mark in signatures with plenty of time to go.] What with Ron Paul's appalling racism, homophobia, and conspiracy mongering now getting the attention it deserves, this may in fact mean that the Republicans are stuck with their strongest candidate, Romney. I wait to see whether this will trigger a serious third party move.
Can it be that Gingrich's campaign really was, all along, no more than an adjunct to his book tour?
I reach my seventy-eighth birthday in two days, so it will be a bit before I begin the first Appreciation, devoted to Kierkegaard's Philosophical Fragments. However, I passed the time on the long flight [when I was not watching the Mia Wassikowska Michael Fassbender Jane Eyre] starting to write the Appreciation in my head. so I should be ready to go in a couple of days.
Merry Christmas all.