Three items (and a photo) that may be of interest to those who might still need to be persuaded to vote for Obama. 
While we've endorsed hundreds of congressional candidates for election, both Democrats and Republicans, we've never before endorsed a presidential candidate. We have members on the left, in the center, and on the right, and we knew it could be controversial to choose either party's candidate for the top office in the nation. But in an era of sweeping presidential power, we must weigh in on this most important political race in the country. Standing on the sidelines is no longer an option for us.
Best Friends Animal Society (my favorite animal-centric charitable organization) recently started a petition to get the Obama family to adopt a rescue animal. After 50,000 signatures, Michelle Obama confirmed that they would be adopting a rescue.
Finally, the poodle pictured in the photo with Obama is Baby. She was rescued after ten years in a puppy mill and is the subject of this book. Obama's political mentor -- Dick Durbin -- is the author of a federal bill to stop the practice of puppy mills. Obama appears in the book as a supporter of Baby and this cause.
 Yes, this post is for my mom.
Up until last Sunday morning, I had only been pulled over by a cop once in my life: I was sixteen years-old and had forgotten to turn on my lights on my way home from my pizza-parlor job. My reaction to being pulled over (pure panic) prompted the officer to ask me if I had been drinking. Of course I was incredibly naive at the time and said: "I'm sixteen -- it's not even legal for me to drink!" And I meant it, too.
Today was Penelope's first trip to a beach, courtesy of a warm October day in San Francisco.
She's a very generous little person and will pick up things and bring them over to people. Then, she makes a little sound that sort of means "here." She started doing that with grains of sand. She'd pick up a pinch of sand and then bring it to me. What totally delights me is how she would take time to pick just the right grains out of the billions out there.
I'm sure that there is some lesson to be learned from this baby's action and that it would make some great sort of Zen parable.
It's amazing what a little color can do. Take these vivid color photographs from the 1930s-1940s available from the Library of Congress collection. Or these photos from turn-of-the-century Russia. It's the presence of color that make these folks look like they aren't that far removed from modern times. (Actually, he's not like anyone I've met lately.)
What's an autochrome, you may ask?
The process used a screen of tiny potato starch grains dyed orange-red, green and violet. Dusted onto a glass plate, the dyed grains were covered with a layer of sensitive panchromatic silver bromide emulsion. As light entered the camera, it was filtered by the dyed grains before it reached the emulsion. While the exposure time was very long, the plate could be processed easily by a photographer familiar with standard darkroom procedures. The result was a unique, realistic, positive color image on glass that required no further printing.
I also love these photographs because they're obviously the result of experiments with a new toy.
But my favorite is this photo of a baby in a high chair from c. 1915.
Perhaps most men won't agree, but the state of women's Halloween costumes has probably hit an all-time skanky low. Since when did every costume out there have to be sexy? Strike that. Sexy would be fine -- I'm talking straight-out slutty. And it's not just the expected sort of costume: nurse, French maid, Playboy Bunny. I'm talking about utterly absurd costumes to be sluttified.
Having a one-year-old, it's very difficult to be spontaneous. That is, unless my idea of spontaneity involves a last minute trip to the park. To be fair, before Penelope, we weren't the really spontaneous types of people. Usually I had a spur-of-the-moment idea for an adventure but we'd talk ourselves out of doing most things before the fun actually began.
This dollarshort.org post was brought to you by Erikka Arone who supported the kids by donating to my DonorsChoose.org Nested & Dollarshort Challenge, [read more about it here] Donate to one of my challenge projects and see your name appear here!