Saturday, December 31, 2011

Brilliant Good Wishes

My favorites of 2011 will have to spill over into the new year, so for now, these are my wishes for you all in 2012. They weren't written by me, but by my favorite author, Neil Gaiman. They are my heartfelt hopes for all who read what I write here, all who drop by only once, and for all friends near and far. Happy 2012 to you!

Neil Gaiman:

A decade ago, I wrote:

May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you're wonderful, and don't forget to make some art -- write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself.

And almost half a decade ago I said:

...I hope you will have a wonderful year, that you'll dream dangerously and outrageously, that you'll make something that didn't exist before you made it, that you will be loved and that you will be liked, and that you will have people to love and to like in return. And, most importantly (because I think there should be more kindness and more wisdom in the world right now), that you will, when you need to be, be wise, and that you will always be kind.

And for this year, my wish for each of us is small and very simple. And it's this:

I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.

Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you've never done before, and more importantly, you're Doing Something.

So that's my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody's ever made before. Don't freeze, don't stop, don't worry that it isn't good enough, or it isn't perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.

Whatever it is you're scared of doing, Do it.

Make your mistakes, next year and forever.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Favorites of 2011: Books

For the last few days of the year, I'm going to give you an unsolicited rundown of some of my favorite things that were either new or new to me in 2011.  Today it's books, tomorrow it will be movies, and the day after that it will be art and music.  These are by no means the best books of the year, but of the ones I read, they are my favorite.

I was sadly unaware of China Mieville's work until I came across this little gem.  All I needed to read was this phrase from the description:  ...the congregation of god kraken.  When I began reading, I thought I'd discovered an author much like my favorite, Neil Gaiman.  There were paragraphs where I thought that this was Gaiman with Terry Pratchett again, but then it would go all Stephen King on my ass.  I soon stopped trying to compare it to anything and just let the strange wash over me.  Mieville has his own voice--articulate, highly educated, and weirder than your old uncle who's gone off his rocker.  Beware the Kraken!  It stirs!

I have mentioned Bossypants by Tina Fey approximately seven thousand times in this blog, which I began in February.  I have mentioned it in posts about photography.  I have mentioned it in posts about movies.  I've mentioned it in posts about politics, and humanism, and Severus Snape.  I've credited Bossypants when gas prices have gone down, when cities have cut down on light pollution, and I think it was the reason those lady sailors were allowed to kiss.  I like Bossypants in a box.  I like Bossypants with a fox.

Tina Fey is smart and funny.  You should read her book.  It is entitled Bossypants.

The new and last in the Inheritance Cycle by the genius (young, distractingly fit) Christopher Paolini.  It's clear that this guy devoured Lord of the Rings, Earthsea, and all manner of fantasy classics as a small child.  Not that he immitates, but in the same manner as these authors he has created an entire world with these books; a world with its own history, languages, customs, and its own brand of goodies and baddies.  These belong on the shelf with Tolkien and Rowling and Pullman (oh, my!).

A History of God by Karen Armstrong and Good Without God by Greg Epstein.
Throughout life, veils are lifted.  There may be a man behind the curtain, or there may just be a bunch of weird shit to sort out.  These are two of the books that helped me do that.  There will be many more.

That's all I have time for now, but I read some great books in 2011, and I hope you did, too.  If you want, tell me about them in the comments.  If not, no worries--just keep reading, and won't we all just be a bunch of informed and entertained smarties.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas, Actually

Blogging Meme

I got this from Mind of Mine...

1. As a blogger, what do you draw inspirations from for your posts? Random stuff which is going on in my life, pop culture, politics, etc. I suppose you can see the answer to this question in the cloud of labels somewhere to the right.

2. If you could swap blogs with another blogger for a post, who would you switch with and why? Maybe one of the movie bloggers I follow. I can review a movie, though not as well as they.

3. If your blog had a theme song, what would it be? Why? I want to say, "The Mary Tyler Moore Theme," but that's not accurate. Hmm...

4. What is your writing process for a post? If something pops in my mind, I write about it sometime that day. I start typing, and don't spend more than an hour on it. I read it through once, make corrections and click "publish."

5. Your blog requires a cute new mascot - what would it be? Some kind of cute dragon, unicorn, griffin, gnome...something like that.

6. Do you feel you express your "true self" on your blog? I think so. I would have to ask my readers who know me in life to know for sure.

7. What is your biggest online pet-peeve? Adverts that pop up and perhaps fly around, and the x button that you click to close it really isn't a close button, so you've just clicked the ad open. Cheaters never prosper!

8. If you could live in a fictional universe, where would you live? Why, the world of Mr. Potter, of course. I'd like to shop at Diagon Alley. Middle-earth would be wicked, too. I'd like to visit Lothlorian. Not sure if that's what the question is getting at, but that's how I take it.

9. You're having a bad day, you're upset, you're angry, or you're sad - what is your go-to comfort? Drive to a neighboring city while listening to something Pink-ish or Green Day-ish...or maybe Rent. Go to Barnes and Noble. Browse, read, get a beverage, repeat 'til happy.

10. What is your favorite inspirational quote? "In the midst of hate, I found there was, within me, an invincible love. In the midst of tears, I found there was, within me, an invincible smile. In the midst of chaos, I found there was, within me, an invincible calm. I realized, through it all, that… In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back." Albert Camus

11. If they were to make a movie based on your life, who would play you, your leading lady/man, your best friend, and your rival? Janeane Garofalo would be me, I don't have a leading "lady/man" :), my best friend would be played by Eric Stoltz, I don't have a rival, but if I did, I would want her to be played by Megan Mullally. I'm going to post this in more detail soon. A blogger I like did it recently including pictures, and it was cool. (I really will! I won't forget--pinky swear!).

12. Do you think the world is going to end in 2012? No. It's bollocks. We will carry on as per usual.

13. If you could change anything about yourself, what would it be? Would love a back that doesn't require a monthly chiropractor visit.

14. What is your favorite season and why? Autumn...mild weather, leaves, cider, Halloween, crackling fires, festivals, crisp air, jeans and sweaters...

15. You've been bitten by a vampire. Would you fight it with all your undead being or would you embrace it for all it is worth? I would be a vampire who is lost in the decadent life--billowy blouses, crushed red and black velvet vests, etc. I'd drink blood from a wine glass--preferably donated blood from a bank. I would be some gay vampire's hag, and live in a castle. You see, I've thought this through.

16. Have you personally met any of your blogger friends? I have not, but would be delighted to.

17. What does your favorite pair of underwear look like? They are purple and fit nicely. Not sexy in the least.

18. Have you ever had something to drink right from the container in the refrigerator knowing other people will have to drink out of the same container later? Uh...I grew up with four siblings, so yes. We all did it.

19. What is your favorite word and explain why? Ethereal, because I like ethereal things, and I find the word to be pretty and nice to say.

20. 2011 is soon coming to a close, is there anything you'd like to do different on your blog in the year 2012? I really should write some more meaningful stuff as opposed to posting shit from Glee.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

A Kiss Is Still A Kiss

I like one of the comments from NPR's blog post about this lovely story: "Two sailors kiss, world doesn't end."    This is really darling, and I'm glad these ladies made it home safely and can enjoy the holidays together.   

Monday, December 19, 2011

A Wicked/Omens Love Child, and Other Things Making Me Grin

I was doing my level best to be a Grinch this year, but a few more things other than these have brought me out of my Christmas slump. Some are at least mildly Christmas-y, some are not.

When Neil Gaiman makes a baby with Wicked

This is the most brilliant crossover piece I've seen in ages...maybe ever.  Star-Surfer, a Spanish chick on Deviant Art, created this crazy smart cover for Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett's Good Omens, one of my favorite books, in an homage to the now iconic poster for Wicked, my favorite musical (and one of my favorite things, period). I...LOVE...THIS.  Dude, instead of the little green witch symbol on the broom over the title, there is a green Bentley.  Seriously cool.  THANK YOU, STAR-SURFER!!!  She also has a cute cartoon that  has Harry Potter visiting Dr. House.  Nice.

Christmas Special, Blaine and Kurt Style

This was brill.  I wish the entire episode had been in this old-timey Christmas show style instead of just the fifteen or twenty minutes that they did.  Bravo to the two men, and  to whomever put together this stunning set--so authentic!  These two look like they were pulled right out of this era.  I wanted to move in to this scene!

Holiday Hits

I'm getting tons of hits on my blog for one particular post that I did on the fictional (but delish) holiday cocktail, The Blue Marilyn.  Searched for phrases include, "Will and Grace Blue Marilyn," "Will's mom's secret drink," "Blythe Danner anti-suicide drink," and more.  The hits have come from all over the U.S., but as nearby as Indianapolis.  They have come internationally from as far as Croatia and, inexplicably, Saudi Arabia.  I can only imagine that much of the Blue traffic has to do with people throwing holiday bashes, and wanting that extra zingy cocktail that, as Will's mom promises, both staves off suicide and is fun.  Drink up, partiers, whether you're under the lights of Hanukkah, standing next to the creche, or bellowing out a hearty, "Io, Saturnalia!"  Drink up even more if you're gearing up for the Festivus airing of grievances and feats of strength.  A Blue Marilyn goes with anything.

(I'm going to mix one up and watch the Mormon Tabernacle Choir on PBS on Wednesday night after I get back from yet another Christmas party.  Just because the MoTabs can't indulge doesn't mean I can't while hearing them sing.  Also, I'm mixing some up for my friend Jack on Christmas night after our family get togethers are over.  We may need it.).


I had a veritable Holmes orgy this weekend, watching the BBC Sherlock series on Netflix, going to the theater to see Sherlock Holmes:  A Game of Shadows, and then, whilst finishing up Christmas wrapping and card writing, I popped in the dvd of the movie that started it all for me, Young Sherlock Holmes.  When this movie came out in 1985, I was eleven.  After seeing it with my childhood bff, Jennifer, I went straight home and started reading the Sherlock Holmes stories.  I'd read them all, including the Holmes novels by about a year later.  This sparked a love of reading in me that reminds me of how kids today talk about how Harry Potter began their love of books (and there is a connection there--Chris Columbus wrote the screenplay of YSH and directed the first two Potter films).  It was a great weekend getting back into my love affair with Holmes, the drug-addicted, asexual misogynist.  God, I love that man.

I beg you to watch the new BBC series if you love Sherlock Holmes.  The way they keep the spirit of the original stories by Doyle, while adding text messaging, modern sensibilities and the London's just stunning and gorgeous.  Love it.  Nobody does it like BBC.

Anyway, those are the things that are making me cheerful in midwinter.  Those, and people I love and who love me back.  Life is a fine thing indeed.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

More Trivia from Formspring

When was the last time you gave flowers?
5 or so years ago to a friend who was ill. Guess I should send more flowers, huh?

Do you believe in God?
No--especially not the bloodthirsty one (see the Old Testament).

If you were offered the job of U.S. president would you take the job?
Hell to the no.

If you could be a star athlete in any sport, which sport would you pick?
Quidditch, Roller Derby, or some martial art.

If you were to go on vacation to a beach, what is the first thing you would do once you got there?
Stand in the tide for a bit, lay down and worship the mighty Ra, then read. Alas, I'm in Indiana, and it's 30 degrees.

What kind of clothes do you feel most comfortable wearing?
Jeans, sneakers, hoodie.

If you could ask Barack Obama one question what would it be?
What is the wildest thing you know, as president, to which most people are not privy?

If you could eliminate one thing you do each day in the bathroom so you never had to do it again, what would it be?
Hair removal. So sorry you had to read that.

If your house was on fire and you could only grab three things, what would they be?
My big Rubbermaid tub of letters from high school to now. That's all I would be able to carry.

What do you like most about yourself?
I'm good company.

If you were to get a tattoo, what would it be?
I'm thinking of a little doodle I do of Elphaba from Wicked, and the words "Defy Gravity."

If you could change one thing that happened this year what would it be?
I can't think of anything, and that is a fine, fine thing.

What is your favorite zoo animal?
The gay penguins on Will & Grace, and the gay penguins on Parks and Recreation.

What kind of music can you just not stand to listen to?
Country, with a few exceptions.

What's the worst show on TV?
Two and a Half Men. It's so misogynist, I can't believe it when I hear a woman rave about it.

What was your favorite class in school?
English and band.

What's the best gift you've ever given?
I gave 4 of my best friends scrapbooks about our friendships that include lots if quotes, photos, and memories specific to each. A note inside indicated that they could add to it, and whenever they want, they can give it back, and I will add more. They have come back to me a few times each.

Do you think a movie or restaurant makes for a better first date?
Both, but a movie is good, because it gives you something to chat about afterwards.

What musical instrument would you most like to be able to play?

What is the last movie that you saw in a theater?
J. Edgar

In what ways do your clothes reflect your personality?
Tina Fey glasses=I like Tina Fey.
Converse shoes=Lame attempt to cling to youth.
Dark jeans with a little wear=I value comfort.
Black sweaters, black eyeliner, black leather jacket, black stuff=I have an inner Goth who lives in a body born too soon for such antics.
Coexist t-shirt, Russia t-shirt, England t-shirt, especially if worn on the 4th of July=I get off on a little "fuck you" whether anyone notices or not.

What's your favorite sport?
Quidditch and Roller Derby.

What video game have you played the most?
Ms. PacMan. Some Star Wars game at a movie theater I used to go to. I was good, man. Children would gather around and watch me play. :)

What is your favorite dessert?

If you could go back in time 10 years and tell your younger self something, what would it be?
Abandon religion.

What restaurant do you enjoy eating at the most?
O'Bryan's Nine Irish Brothers.

What is your favorite song?
At the moment, a three-way tie: Defying Gravity from Wicked. Wicked Little Town from Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Not Like the Movies, Katy Perry.

What do you put on your french fries?

What is your favorite month of the year?
October (oh, how I hate to see it go).

If you had your own talk show, who would your first three guests be?
Sarah Silverman, First Lady Obama, Bill Paxton.

What do you like to do when you are feeling sick?
Drink orange juice or Sierra Mist. Read or watch movies under my tie dye college blanket.

When was the last time you received flowers?
A year or so ago from an embarrassing co-worker.

Who is your favorite singer?
Sara Bareilles, Idina Menzel.

What was the worst movie you've ever seen?
The Mexican, Greencard, Zenith.

What person do you most admire?
J. K. Rowling

As a child, what did you want to become when you grew up?
Author, detective, astronaut.

He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named (Rick Perry)

Everyone has seen the infamous, unbelievable, brain-exploding, veins a poppin', IS HE SERIOUS? advert starring Rick Perry.  Just in case you haven't, I'll place it here, but only to pair with this fantastic parody photo.  Classic.

Michele Bachmann as Bellatrix?  Anyone?  Someone with mad photoshop skills get on that, please.

Thanks, Blag Hag, who posted it first, and who also posted some other cheery wizarding news recently.  Her Alma Mater, and my neighboring university, Purdue, won the Quidditch World Cup in their division!  Woo hoo!  Go Boiler Quidditch!!!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

I'm Keeping Christ in Christmas...and Stretched Across My Tits

I've had a rough go of it this year trying to eke out a drop, particle, or even an inkling of Christmas spirit.

Part of it is that I'm not looking forward to winter.  Last year we had some pretty wicked storms up my way, and countless times I had to change plans because of the inclemency of it all.  Somehow, the same storms that cancel fun do not cancel responsibilities such as work, and I had to drive in the mess, anyway.  The year just flew by, as they do, so now I'm looking down the barrel of another Indiana winter, and I'm just not that into it.  All the snowy Christmas images and wintery scenes from Christmas classics are not doing it for me.

Whatever it is that's making me a Scrooge, I'm doing my best to find the positives that will get me through the potential annoyances of the coming holiday.  Here are a few holiday-related pick-me-ups that have given me enough of a smile to carry on with all of the bollocks.

This T-shirt

I was reading something online, and this picture popped to the side as an advert.  I thought for sure it said something snarky, but in clicking on it, I found that it was completely sincere.

In case you can't see the whole thing (and who can blame you due to ta-ta distortion?), it reads, "I'm keeping CHRIST in CHRISTmas, and more importantly, in my heart."  This made me laugh tremendously.  I love the idea that maybe they put this shirt on a "killer rack" in the hopes that it would "fly off the racks."  I worked at a Christian retail store a million years ago, so if I were still doing that, I would be selling funny stuff like this.  Wow.

Author Visit

At my company holiday party last night, I got to meet one of my favorite authors, Christopher Paolini, who wrote (not writes...sad!) the Inheritance Cycle, which consists of Eragon, Eldest, Brisingr, and Inheritance.  He was there to chat and autograph books, and I got the latest book signed.  My heart went pitter-pat (nerdgasm) when I got my turn with the man, and it was a really great experience. 

Besides it being personally satisfying to meet who I believe is a really great young author, it was a little awe-inspiring to be in his presence.  That may seem a little extreme, but it is not an exaggeration to state that I have a job because this guy writes great books.  Publishing is an ever-changing industry, which makes it challenging and exciting, but it really feels a little off-kilter when it literally changes on a day to day basis in an unpredictable way.  In a world that is this fluid, a bestseller keeps a publishing company afloat.  Seriously, one hit a year can be a savior, even for a massive publishing house. 

This very young man has given us four blockbusters in his young life, and millions and millions of his books have flown out of our facility.  On its release day, his most recent book sold nearly half a million copies, and hardcover books dominated that figure by 85 percent.  Even in the following weeks, hard copies continued to sell in huge numbers.  The selling of both physical and digital books are great for the industry and for my particular company, but when people want physical copies like that in droves, it says something about the personal connection they have with the content and author.  I could go on and on about this topic, and it would bore you to tears, but the crux is that an author like Christopher means livelihood for many, many people, and for that he got a standing O last night. 

And I got my own type of O when he stood right by my table before taking the stage.

Putting up my tree

...Which I seriously had to force myself to do.  Usually, I put it up the day after Thanksgiving, but as I said, I just wasn't into it this year.  I finally got it put up on Tuesday, which was the 6th of December.  That's pretty late for me.  I stuck in a dvd of Christmas Vacation, thinking that comedy might boost my Xmas 'tude a bit (I knew Christmas music would just piss me off), and dove in to my decorations. 

I didn't put everything out--the little Christmas villiage I have is still in storage.  I put up a bunch of stockings and my tree, and that's about it (I need to retrieve the Nightmare Before Christmas music box/snowglobe that my brother and sister-in-law gave me from my closet.  It's awesome, and it's going out tonight).  I did start to feel a little  happier when I realized how kitchy most of my ornaments were.  I love my Kermit who is delivering gifts via bicycle.  Also, I didn't realize how many Harry Potter ornaments I have.  Seeing them gave me inspiration to go get the HP finger puppet set I got last year for Christmas, and use those for ornaments, too.  Best of all, I decided to make Dumbledore the topper (insert good-spirited, respectful gay joke here).

I love how the puppet of He-who-must-not-be-named could also pass for the lady Satan in The Passion of the Christ.

Anyway, I don't know if I feel any more Christmas-y, but I'm happy that my tree is up.  I have it plugged into an outlet that is on a circuit with one of my light switches, so it looks all cheerful and stunning when I flip the switch and the tree lights up the dark room all on its own.  I like how snarky it looks with a gay, purple-clad wizard on top.  The season will be gay and bright indeed. 

Somehow, it always is. 

Friday, December 2, 2011

An Old Idea that Needs to Go

Throughout human history, there have been innumerable ideas that have had their day, but then they were let go.  They had to be.

In the time of Galileo Galilei, the predominant belief was that the earth was stationary and the center of the universe.  He, however, proposed heliocentrism, the notion that it was the sun in fact that remained still, while the earth revolved around it.  This was deemed heresy because of the following verses of scripture, which are just a few examples:  "The Lord set the earth on its foundations; it can never be moved"  (Psalm 104:5) and
"The sun rises and sets and returns to its place."  (Ecclesiastes 1:5).  When undergoing inquisition, he stated that the writers of these texts were simply speaking from the only perspective they had--a perspective that wasn't informed by telescopes and complex mathematics. 

Galileo eventually was placed under house arrest for his understanding of the truth, but of course time has confirmed what he had discovered through observation and study.  Geocentrism had its day, but eventually it had to go.  He stands as a hero in time, and those who opposed him appear as fools.

In early American history, Africans were kidnapped, brought to the colonies, sold and purchased, and were made to perform difficult labor for unsavory masters who often beat them and raped them, but never paid them.  This was the norm, and it was supported by scriptures which give such inspirational advice as, "Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.  You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property." (Leviticus 25:44-45).  Nice. 

Time passed, and worldviews began to change.  In the 1960s, a century after abolition, the civil rights movement came alive and gained momentum.  People began to see that the inferiority of certain ethnic groups, people of different nationalities, and women was not a truth--it was just an idea.  Racism was an idea that needed to go.  Those who stood up to the opposition and insisted that their voices should be heard, for example the Freedom Riders, are shining lights in history, and they are honored today.  The people who opposed them, spewed hateful speech at them, threw rocks and tried to burn them alive...well, what can they look like to us other than ignorant, neanderthal-like villians? 

Today there's another idea that has had its day.  It has got to go.  It needs to get out of town. 

It's the idea that two men should not love each other, or live in the same house, or be intimate, or raise children.  It's the idea that two women should not love each other, or live in the same house, or be intimate, or raise children.

Put a fork in it, people.  This idea is done.  Just like the other two ideas discussed here, it's been around for a long, long time.  It's supported by scriptures just as antiquated and gross as the ones above.  But I know better, and so do you.  It's an old idea that needs to go.

The following videos are what motivated this post. Grab a tissue. Take a look.

We can stand in history as heroes, or we can be remembered as the fools. 

These videos are flying everywhere, but thanks to the authors of One Fell out of the Lemon Tree and Dorothy Surrenders, whose blogs were where I first saw them.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

25% Mormon

This is kinda fun.  I filled out this test at,* seriously called the Belief-O-Matic, and it gave me a list of religions that I fit.  It's ranked based on the percentage of answers I gave that matched this or that faith.  Here's my list:

  1. Secular Humanism (100%)
  2. Unitarian Universalism (91%)
  3. Liberal Quakers (75%)
  4. Nontheist (74%)
  5. Theravada Buddhism (68%)
  6. Neo-Pagan (64%)
  7. Mainline to Liberal Christian Protestants (60%)
  8. New Age (48%)
  9. Reform Judaism (44%)
  10. Taoism (44%)
  11. Orthodox Quaker (38%)
  12. Mahayana Buddhism (37%)
  13. Sikhism (32%)
  14. New Thought (28%)
  15. Baha'i Faith (25%)
  16. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) (25%)
  17. Jainism (24%)
  18. Christian Science (Church of Christ, Scientist) (22%)
  19. Seventh Day Adventist (20%)
  20. Hinduism (19%)
  21. Mainline to Conservative Christian/Protestant (19%)
  22. Eastern Orthodox (16%)
  23. Islam (16%)
  24. Orthodox Judaism (16%)
  25. Roman Catholic (16%)
  26. Jehovah's Witness (12%)
I'm not surprised at the top answers, but I'm a little stunned to find that I'm more Mormon than what I actually was previously, which is Conservative Christian/Protestant.  I think my Roman Catholic friend Jack may throw a fit that I'm more Mormon and Hindu than Catholic and that I'm equal parts Muslim and Catholic.  I sort of took this on the fly, so I'm sure my results would differ each time I took it.

But there you go.  I'm more Mormon than I thought.  I may shed a tear the next time I hear "I Believe" on The Book of Mormon soundtrack. 

One last thing for today.  Since I'm a 74% Non-theist, I want to give a shout-out to a Non-theist member of my family tree--Mark Twain (he makes an appearance in my ancestry by the skin of his teeth, but I cling to the connection nonetheless).  Anyone who has Googled anything today knows that this is his 176th birthday.  Here are a few quotations from the old crank:

Nothing agrees with me. If I drink coffee, it gives me dyspepsia; if I drink wine, it gives me the gout; if I go to church, it gives me dysentery.     From a letter to Henry H Rogers (August 7, 1905), quoted from Barbara Schmidt, ed, "Mark Twain Quotations, Newspaper Collections, & Related Resources" 

God, so atrocious in the Old Testament, so attractive in the New--the Jekyll and Hyde of sacred romance.     From Notebook (1904)

*I don't necessarily endorse the content on this site.  One of their big stories right now is, "Inspiring Quotes from the Twilight Saga."  Seriously?

Monday, November 28, 2011

Melancholia, Muppets, Marilyn...

I know that for some, this past holiday weekend is traditionally, among other things, a time for movie-going. It isn't always for me, but somehow I ended up at the movies three times for Melancholia, The Muppets, and My Week with Marilyn. My quickie reviews for each:

Melancholia--Trippy (the trippy bits in the trailer are the reason I went), at times hard to watch due to a character's crippling depression, and a film that provides food for thought that would fill many Thanksgiving tables. This is the type of movie that is a hit in the artsy theaters, but many mainstream moviegoers will hate it. I personally like it when a film makes me uncomfortable, and I enjoy leaving the theater thinking, "What did I just see?!" Depending on your preference, you may want to talk to someone about the movie for hours after, or contemplate it on your own. I chatted about it for just a few minutes with my old college friend who went with me, then after an hour long drive home, I called a friend who'd also seen it, and we chatted the night away.

Muppets--Cute, funny, clever, nostalgic. Oscar nominee Amy Adams is so classy to join in the fun, and I love hearing her sing again. There are so many great cameos like Sarah Silverman and Neil Patrick Harris.

My Week with Marilyn--Michelle Williams is mesmerizing, and doesn't look like herself. She and lots of others took pains to transform her, and it shows. It goes without saying that Judi Dench and Kenneth Branaugh shine. Non-wand-wielding Emma Watson does a fantastic turn as a low-on-the-totem-pole wardrobe girl. I love that she's willing to pay her dues and earn her right to a justifiable spot in the world of films--another classy lady.

I also saw Night of the Iguana with my film group, which is adapted from the Tennessee Williams play, and stars Richard Burton, Ava Gardner, and Deborah Kerr. It's worth its own post, and I must go to bed! Maybe another day...

Saturday, November 26, 2011

How-Did-I-Miss-This Files

Maybe I should change my subscription from Day Old News to Behind the Times (copyright Jack McFarland).  Here's some stuff I missed from 2010 and backward, within the categories of science, politics, and art.

Another reptile lineage switches from egg-laying to live birth.  It just switched.  Because live birth is better.  Did they say another?  What?!  I need to read more books and view more programs about actual, the kind that doesn't involve flying dragons, blue phone booths and people with scissors for hands.

Here's a short video that wasn't exactly earth-shattering news in politics last year, but it demonstrates very well why I love, love, love Rachel Maddow.  Love.  Smart and funny are my two favorite things, and in her line of work, lethal to the crazies who try to get away with shit.

In the realm of music and art, I can't believe I missed this, simply because it involves my favorite singer, Sara  Bareilles.  I not only love this song, but the animation to go with it is just stunning--beautiful, brooding and nostalgic, punctuated with hope.  The animated Sara and Ingrid are adorable, and they give me a spark of hapiness going into winter, to which I was not looking forward.  I have a love/hate relationship with Christmas music, so this song is a nice antidote.  Props to Dorothy for posting this video.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Dark Side

I could watch this a million times and it would still make me laugh. When she takes over, I will be one of her minions.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Fun Stuff Friday--Glee Edition

This video is flying around everywhere, but who am I to stop it? The Glee ladies burned it up this week. I've never heard Santana (don't know the young lady's name who plays her--you see, I'm not that pitifully non-adult) sound this amazing. That lady-lovin' Cheerio can saaang, bitches.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Sax From the Past

I kept meaning to post this ages ago, when I was putting up old stuff that I'd drawn, pictures I'd taken, etc.  here it finally is, though it's an awful picture-of-a-picture.

I took this photo of my saxophone during my senior year in college in a photography class.  We developed all of our own film (a glossy substance upon which images used to be captured--remember?), and a girl in the class enlightened me to the fact that instead of washing the entire sheet of photo paper with developer, you can just sponge it on as you wish.  I streaked it around and ended up with this very '80s looking image, but I liked it.  It hangs in my living room, and reminds me of the good old days. 

The things you can learn in a dark room...

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Quick Note

Note to creationists: When Adam and Eve where plopped into the Garden of Eden, early civilizations were managing wineries and wearing leather shoes.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Formspring Question--Movies

What's your favorite movie quote?

This is a tough one, because there are so many, and I am a rabid collector of quotations from films, books, funny or great stuff I hear people say, etc.  I write them down in a journal.  Over the years I've collected two full journals, which is sort of a lot considering I'm just writing a few little lines at a time (or sometimes pasting in a clip I've cut out of somewhere).  Anyway, here are the first favorite movie ones that popped into my mind:

"Those Baptists are STUPID, STUPID, STUPID!" --Ed Wood (from the film of the same name).

"Too bad, she said she doesn't want you here when she gets back because you've been ruining everybody's lives and eating all our steak." --Napoleon Dynamite (from the film of the same name)

Queen Gorgo: Spartan!
King Leonidas: Yes, my lady?
Queen Gorgo: Come back with your shield, or on it.
King Leonidas: Yes, my lady.  --(from 300)

Joanne: All those kids in there want to run away and join the circus.
Helena: Great, they can have my life. I want to run away and join real life. (from MirrorMask)

"I shall slip unnoticed through the darkness... like a dark, unnoticeable slippy thing." --Valentine (also from MirrorMask)

That's all for the moment, but here comes the part where I think of others and go, "OH!  How could I not include THAT one?!"

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Formspring--Sunday Mornings

Question:  Where do you attend church?

Depending on my mood...

Church of the Big Awesome Breakfast
Church of Laundry and NPR
Church of Great Cinema
Church of CBS Morning News and Face the Nation
Church of Simply Saturdays
Church of Great Books
Church of Choosing My Friends Based on Common Interests
Church of Giving to Causes that are Helpful to People
Church of Resting
Church of Freethinking
Church of the Arts
Church of Mind, Body and Spirit
Church Not Tainted by Politics
Church of Ongoing Learning
Church of No Guilt
Church of Goodness and Decency for its Own Sake
Church of Human Rights and Social Justice
Church of Balance
Church of Sanity
Church of Including Everyone
Church of Being Good to the Planet
Church of Catching up on Errands and Chores
Church of Hanging out With Friends
Church of Living According to the Moral Compass that Has Always Been Inside

...and once in awhile, the Unitarian Universalist church in a neighboring city, only because I want to, and because it stands for all of the above as much as or more than I do.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

No, I Don't Want to Share My Journey

It was inevitable that I would eventually have to start talking to people in my life about the fact that my beliefs have changed drastically, and that I'm no longer religious.  I'm not sure what category I fit yet--humanist feels right, and I remember even in my Christian days thinking I was humanist, not even knowing that it was a "thing."  A few years ago, I started reading up on Humanism as a movement and philosophical stance, and everything I read about it makes me think, "Yep, that's what I am."  It wasn't a decision to convert to anything, it was just something I already was.  It was just buried under all of the dogma that I'd been raised with, then had taken as my own.  Depending on the day, agnostic or atheist works, too.

I've talked to some friends and a few of my siblings about it, and it has been an interesting mix of so-not-a-big-deal to "la la la I can't hear you" and moving on to the next topic.  Either way, no shit storms.  The most direct conversation I've had about it came this week...on a day that I took off from work to relax...with a person I've seen twice in my life.  I'm sort of irritated about this, and I wonder if you'll understand why.

A friend of mine from high school (and I graduated from high school twenty years ago this coming May) has for a long time been affiliated with a conservative Christian organization whose main purpose is proselytizing.  It started in her college years, and it became her job.  Believe me, I get this.  My most uber-Christian days were my college years and into my early twenties (sad, I know).  My faith in college led to some Jesus jobs for me, too, so we had this in common. 

We haven't had a ton of contact over the years, but every once in awhile, we'll run into each other.  I was one of her financial supporters for several years, and stopped three or four years ago for a few reasons.  One, I had a herniated disc, and in order to avoid surgery was doing a therapy that is legit, but not covered by insurance, so I was paying out of pocket.  The other reason, more selfishly, was that I was going to Ireland, and had a "fuck it" attitude toward some of the Christian groups I was sick of giving to at the expense of living my life.  This was no big deal, and she was great about it.

Fast forward to today, when she is married to guy who also works for this organization.  I still get their letters, which sometimes ask for extra donations or for you to become a monthly donor if you haven't already, or if you've dropped off of doing so like I had.  Even as a non-believer, I enjoyed getting the letters and seeing what their growing family was up to, and for the most part the religious goings on weren't annoying.  My biggest beef with this is that there is almost no humanitarian work done, as the goal is to convert people--get them "saved."

I'd gotten a few letters recently that were really heavy on the asking for moolah, and I began to wonder if it was time to come clean and tell them that I wouldn't donate anymore because I don't support their organization.  I never felt compelled to make contact, though, because seriously I met this guy at their wedding and then I saw them together one other time since then.  (Incidentally, the second meeting was promoted as an "open house" where they were going to be in town, so y'all come and we'll get to visit, but it turned out that they were just plugging their ministry.  Awkward).  Though I have great memories of her in high school, they are people I don't even see on a yearly basis.  My waffling wasn't allowed to continue, though, because last week, I got a really long rambling message from this guy via voicemail, asking me to look at their recent letter and really consider giving an extra gift and please, please become a monthly donor again. 

At this point, I knew I was going to have to 'fess up, but I was a little annoyed at how it was happening.  This guy whom I'd met twice was going to be the catalyst for me talking to an old friend about my belief system.  Potentially this would spread to other old friends, which is fine, but the time and method would not be of my choosing.  I was trying to decide whether to call my friend or perhaps write her a letter (a proper one, in the mail).  I hadn't decided, but I still thought it would be more appropriate for me to talk to her about it than him. 

A few days passed, and on a day where I was trying to relax (work has been crazy, as I've been filling in for my boss's maternity leave that started two months earlier than expected) I got another voicemail from him.  I knew I couldn't put it off anymore, so I just called him back when I got the message.

I asked him if it was a good time, and it was, so I dove in.  It was something like this:  "I got your messages, and I wanted to let you both know that I love and support you and your adorable family, but my beliefs have changed.  Because of that, [blank] isn't an organization I wish to give to anymore.  I want you to be successful and reach your goals, but I can't be a part of that other than being your friend."  It kind of spilled out, and I felt good about it.  I really didn't feel like I owed this veritable stranger any details.  He was really great about it; however, I was again annoyed (I'm over-using that word) when  he asked, "Well, do you have a minute?  Could you share your journey with me?"

You know what?  No.  I really didn't feel like it was necessary or appropriate to talk to him about it.  One of the things that kills me about religious people now that I'm out is that regardless of their level of association with you, they feel that everything is their fucking business.  Is this a religious thing, or is it a symptom of social networking?  I don't know, but I made an excuse that I couldn't talk anymore.  Maybe that was a cowardly way out and I just should have said "No, I don't want to share my journey with you" but I just wanted to get off of the phone and enjoy the rest of my day...which of course was clouded with this whole thing no matter how I tried to distract myself. 

He said that the next time they are in town, which will probably be Christmas, he wants for the three of us to visit.  Ugh.  I really like her, and I know I would like him if I knew him more, but I know any visit we have will be all about "hearing my journey" or trying to get me back in the fold.  I'm undoubtedly on numerous prayer lists by now.  I can't complain, because I used to be them, but I find it all so ridiculous now. 

We'll see what transpires from here.  Rant over.

Monday, October 31, 2011

A Halloweeny Formspring Question

Why do you think I love any kind of end of civilization movie that has brain eating zombies in it, but I can't handle the supernatural or slasher movies?

I don't know for sure, but my guess is that the brain eating zombies are so outlandish that you don't have any real fear or belief that they will come and get you.  Maybe some of the supernatural and slasher stuff is just close enough to reality, your perceived reality, and/or stories you've heard to scare you into believing you could be harmed in some way.  Just a guess!

I like to think that I'm logical and a bit of a skeptic these days, not believing in anything supernatural.  I have my own triggers to being freaked out, though...

When I was a little girl, the internet was called "the Public Library."  I would go there, and I went through a mysteries-of-the-unexplained period; aliens were a favorite subcategory.  I read all kinds of books about UFOs and alien sightings.  I even read the Whitley Strieber book Communion, his account of a series of abductions by "visitors."  Even as a seventh grader, I took this book with a grain of salt reading it as a novel though he put it forth as non-fiction.  It was still probably not appropriate reading for my age group (as weren't the Stephen King novels I was reading, but I digress). 

Anyway, about a year ago, I was flipping around my on demand movies, and saw that The Fourth Kind was available. I watched the trailer, and it scared me shitless.  No way was I going to watch that--I think I watched some comedy instead.  In the wee hours, I woke up to a really volatile storm raging outside. When lightening flashed, there was this green glow around my window blinds.  I got up ready to look outside, knowing--KNOWING, say I--that there were going to be fucking aliens out there.

Spoiler alert: there were not aliens out there.  Next morning, I realized that my girlhood search for the strange--plus that movie trailer--had really pushed my buttons.

Others I know have different buttons and triggers, and it can be due to religions leanings.  For example, a friend of mine who is Roman Catholic (and about 6 feet 4 inches tall and a gay man--I don't know why this adds to the humor, but it does for me) told me about a time when he and another friend of the same faith decided to watch The Exorcist  late at night.  They were so freaked out that in order to go to the kitchen to get snacks mid-way, they felt that they must drape themselves in blankets like ghosts and put their rosaries on top of their already covered heads.  His friend in this story is female and short-ish.  The image of two ghosts, one tall and one short, wearing rosary headbands just kills me.  My guess is that they were shrieking all the way to the kitchen and back to the couch, too.

Anywho, he is bothered by other spiritual movies with a Catholic flair, and I think it's because he sort of believes some of the content.

Just this morning, I read one of my favorite blogs, To Try a New Sword on a Chance Wayfarer, and the author had linked to a really fascinating article on why we are drawn to and disturbed by horror.  That article is here.  It deals with primal instincts we have, various theories about psychological development, and gender roles.

Hooray!  This was my first bonafide Formspring question, as all of the others I have answered have been the daily ones or the automatically generated ones.  Thanks, asker! (I think I know who you are, as I believe we texted back and forth about this.  You know the tall gay ghost with the rosary on his head, btw).

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Two Spooks and a Day of the Dead Skull

J'adore Halloween, but just didn't have the "umf" to put out a bunch of stuff this year.  One day, I begrudgingly opened my Halloween box, and right on the top were these cute little spooks I made last year with my art group.  They're papier mache little guys, and we used the prefabricated craft gauze stuff. You take strips of the gauze dipped in water and pretend like you're making a little cast on your finger (pick a finger, any finger). Wait until it dries a bit, scoot it off of your finger, then you drape a piece of wet gauze over it. (Vaseline on your finger first will help the scooting, but we didn't use it). Work with the sheet until it looks how you want it to. After it dries, Sharpie on the eyes. Voila!

Super cute

Just as cute going as coming

Use it for a finger puppet!

This year, we went to the same lady's house for our Halloween meeting, and she taught us to draw not-so-cute, but really cool Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos) skulls. She knew we would be intimidated by the awesome ones she found online, so she led us through a doodling exercise before she even told us what we were doing. Very smart! (She's one of two art teachers in our group. We're grateful for these gurus!).

Here's mine. I want to make a few more and think they'll turn out better, but this wasn't bad for my first try. I'll lay this right at the top of my Halloween box of decorations so as to freak myself out next year when I open it! This year, I only put out my two wee spooks, but I vow to go whole hog next Halloween (and Dia de los Muertos) season.

Happy Halloween weekend. Make something fun or creepy--even if it's just a doodle!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Halloween Preview (or...Severus for the Rest of Us)

Last week I decided it was time to commit to a costume. I didn't want to think about it much, so I thought that I would be whatever person, place or thing that popped immediately in my head. For some indescernable reason, the first words that sprang to mind were "Truman Capote." I looked in my closet, and oddly, like last year when I was Ozzy Osbourne, all needed items were there--hat, scarf, jacket...easy. Here are a few pictures. I was sort of going for the In Cold Blood period.

 I hadn't pulled my hair back, and when I took off my hat and caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror, I thought, "Jesus, I look like Severus Snape." This isn't the first time I've noticed this. I have a picture of myself with my friend Chris that I scrapbooked along with some Harry Potter book release photos because of my Slytherin-esque appearance. Anyway, here is the ocular proof that I may be Professor Snape's love child...

I include a smiley one so as not to frighten away any would-be trick-or-treaters.  Anyway, the end of all this is that I'm going as Severus Snape for Halloween.  All I need besides my own mug is a black robe and a wand, which I also have readily available in my closet.  Doesn't everyone?

P.S.--I never lost faith in you, Professor!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Coming Out--Jennifer Knapp

In a former life, I worked at both a Christian radio station, then a shitty Christian retail store where I ran the small music section.  One of the usual suspects in our line up on the radio station and featured prominantly at the store was the hugely talented and award-winning singer/songwriter/musician Jennifer Knapp. Besides being a main pillar of Christian rock/pop, she dabbled deeper in the biz, signing new artists such as Katy Hudson (a very young girl who later changed her last name to Perry).

Everyone who kept up with these things was surprised in 2002 when Jennifer completely fell off of the grid, no longer touring or putting out new music. It was even rumored that Toby Mac, the head of her label and in essence her boss, only had a number at which he could leave messages for her, a tentative connection at best. The girl had gotten out of Dodge.

All questions were answered when Jennifer re-emerged in 2009. She came out as a lesbian having lived happily for seven years in Australia with her girlfriend.

Reaction from the Christian community ranged from "We adored you then, we adore you now, we support LGBT rights" to "We hate you, you're evil, let God change you or go to hell" to "Who cares, when is your new album coming out?" Jennifer still identifies as Christian, and is walking the very hard road of building acceptance and awareness in that broad and all-over-the-board community.

If you have a moment, check out her newest album, Letting Go. It's her best stuff yet, and you can definitely spot a few places where she wrote/sang about her struggle with her identity as a lesbian and the fear of coming out in a potentially judgemental community. Also check YouTube for her interview with Larry King just after she came out. She's so much more kind and gracious than I ever could have been to a douchey pastor they brought in. He sat right next to her and said that she's wrong and misguided, blah, blah, blah. I wanted to pour hot soup in his lap (Wow--that phrase came right to the surface...I think I was eating hot soup whilst watching the interview the first time...).

I'm proud of you, Jennifer!
P.S. I hope everyone wore purple today to support LGBT youth and to help counteract bullying. Due to the day's activities, I had to dress down, so my purple consisted of a purple hoodie, gray cargo pants, and purple Converse sneakers. I looked Beiber-esque, but dammit I wore purple.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

It Gets Better RH

I know, I'm supposed to be on sabbatical from this, but this is too important to wait. I have reason to be happy and proud when this company makes good. Well done, all.

(And now, I slip back into the darkness...).

Monday, September 26, 2011

Wee Little Paper Things

It's been awhile since I posted any art projects, which is a bummer since that's sort of why I started this blog.  "Harry Potter" is bigger over there to the right in my cloud of labels--a sign that something has gone awry. 

Anyway, here are two little wee stars that we made in my art group last month.  They're super cute and barely more than the size of your thumb nail.  :)

Together, with the "1," they make a one hundred to mark my 100th post.  This is approximately one hundred more posts than I thought I would ever do.  Here's to making it to 101!

With that, I'm going to take a break from blogging, maybe for about a month or two. 

Ta for now!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

SoulPancake and Formspring Questions

(Pinky swear, this is the last of these for awhile).

If you and your friends formed a biker gang, what would your name be?
Broadway Zombie Coven (ladies, am I right?)

Are you more of a talker or more of a listener?
Listener, which I enjoy sometimes, but not always.

What's your favorite sport?
Roller Derby!!! To watch, not play. I'm a pussy, and I can't skate.

Would you rather be really hot or really cold?
I'm hot then I'm cold, I'm yes then I'm no, I'm in then I'm out, I'm up then I'm down. ...I don't really wanna stay, no. I don't really wanna go-oh.

Who do you think should be the next president of the United States?
Barack Obama. I know that will piss off people who use phrases like "Obamacare" and who think that one day, if they've sprained their ankles, they'll have to stand before an Obama DEATH PANEL. Or, I guess prop themselves up before an Obama death panel.

Do you believe in fate?
In the end, there is only ka.

Have you ever been fired? If so, why?

If you had the opportunity to live one year of your life over again, which year would you choose?
Right after college, so I guess 1996. I had 4 Jesus jobs after college (some overlapped), and if I had that to do over, I would have exactly zero Jesus jobs.

If you won a $1,000 shopping spree for any store, which store would you pick?
Gordman's or Target...or Best Buy...or Barnes and Noble. I have fancy taste.

Who do you think should run for president of the United States?
Rachel Maddow.

If you were stranded on a desert island, which one person would you bring with you?
Lena Headey.

Are you a morning or night person?
Night, baby.

If you had to cook dinner for someone tonight, what would you make?

What do you think was the greatest invention in your lifetime?
The Jesus Christ Sponge! The only sponge that, when you use it, makes you exclaim, "Jesus Christ, that's neat!"

What do you think is your most attractive feature?
I get the most compliments on my hair, which will eventually go gray and fall out, so...super.

Where's your favorite place to buy clothes?
Hot Topic. (for t-shirts, stripey socks and sneakers).

What did you eat for breakfast today?
Today I had one of my favorite things...BREAKFAST FOR DINNER! Southwest omelettes with black beans, red onions, pepperjack cheese. Sliced new potatoes cooked in a skillet with evoo. Yum.

What was your favorite year?
1996 Senior year of uni
2009 Ireland trip and half marathon
2011 Current year...still alive and kicking!

What celebrity would play you in a movie about your life?
I've been told Janeane Garofalo.

If your house was on fire and you could only grab three things, what would they be?
My sister wives.

How many countries have you traveled to?
4...2 were proper visits, 1 a day and a half layover, and 1 just an afternoon of shopping and eating.

If you could have the starring role in one movie what would it be?
Edward Scissorhands--cool costume and make-up.

Would you rather be a zombie or a werewolf?

What's your favorite season of the year?

What's your favorite city?
That I've ever been to: Dublin
That I can easily get to: Chicago

Star Trek or Star Wars?
Wars if I have to choose, but I like both. My brother might disown me if I didn't choose Star Wars.

What website do you spend the most time on?
Passive Aggressive Notes, TED...

If you could go on a road trip with any person, dead or alive, who would it be and where would you go?
Ellen DeGeneres, Tina Fey, and Steve Carrell. They would inexplicably show up at my place, and we would drive to Vegas.

What's your dream car?
A periwinkle mini-cooper. I'm an idiot.

What was your favorite movie as a child?
Young Sherlock Holmes. I saw it with my childhood best friend, Jennifer, and immediately went home and started reading Sherlock Holmes novels end stories. Holmes was my first obsession! He made me love reading more than ever, and in that way, the movie was life-changing for me.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Bible Buffet

I know this guy has made the rounds, but I love this picture more every time I see it.  He's the tough guy who had Leviticus 18:22 tattooed on his bad self, proving some boss point to the world about how much Yahweh hates the gays and forbids their behavior (this verse is about man lovin', but one must assume that Mr. Awesome and his deity of choice also disapprove of the horizontal lady mambo.  Maybe he'll get the bad girl verses on the other shoulder). 

The joke, of course, is that barely over a chapter later in Leviticus 19:28, the same God also forbids tattoos.*  Cool guy bellied up to the Bible buffet, and chose the rule with which he agrees, and disregarded the one with which he does not. 

In other words, he is just like every other religious person, because picking and choosing from the buffet is what every modern person of faith must do. 

The Bible says I can't get a tattoo, but if I don't, how will the world know how I feel about gays?  So, you get one.

The Bible says that people who behave abnormally have spirits in them that can be cast into pigs, which will subsequently drown themselves, thereby subduing the spirits.  But we know that they are simply mentally ill, and may be helped with medication and counsel.

The Bible says that if I have enough faith, I can say to a mountain, "Move over, Rover," and it will.  But I know this isn't true, so if I want to erect that statue of Jillian Michaels in my backyard (GAY!), I will have to rent a backhoe. 

So, belly up to the Bible (or other holy book of choice) buffet.  The ones who don't, and take the whole thing seriously, are the FLDS who live on compounds and dress like the cast of Little House on the Prairie.  They are the Hasidic Jews wearing phylacteries and who have side curls down to their hip bones.  They are the turbaned, bearded, berobed Muslims (who, paranthetically, look more like Jesus probably did than the blue-eyed European guy we know from the paintings).  Fundamentalists from every religion seem so hard-core, because they take their religion literally.  They are not kidding when they say they believe. 

A fundamentalist is a religion's natural conclusion, its masterpiece.  Everyone else just picks and chooses.  Thank goodness.


And then I will run like hell.

*I have heard some conservative Christians deal with this tattoo issue by saying that these instructions were for the Levites only, the tribe set apart in the Hebrew nation to serve as priests.  However, when asked if it was also only the Levites who couldn't be homosexual, the "it's ok" rule doesn't carry over.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Emmy Round-UP

...Is the most deceiving title I could possibly have used, considering that I didn't watch them.  There are just a couple of reasons that I looked them up online later.

In our culture, we celebrate people in the entertainment industry.  Most of the time this is a train wreck, both for the people being celebrated, and for those of us who celebrate. 

But sometimes, we get it just right.  Sometimes, we choose people who are not just familiar to us and stunning, but who have the talent, brains, and at least in all appearences the capture ours. 

Oftentimes, if you run across all of these characteristics in one person, that guy will be a hot English lady.  There were two at the Emmys this year. 

And that is what I have to say about the 2011 Emmys!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Quote of the Week--Contagion

"Blogging isn't writing. It's graffiti with punctuation."

--A line from the movie Contagion (I forget who said it, but it was directed at Jude Law's character).

Ha! That one gave me a chuckle. :)

Irish Fest

I went to Irish Fest this weekend. Don't be jealous of my glitter tattoo. (I have been retrieving glitter from places glitter should never, ever go).

I meant to return for the second day, but pooped out for various lame reasons. I missed the Kilted Mile. Who won the Bonniest Knees award? Least Likely to Finish? I may never know.

Still, I enjoyed Saturday. I had some whiskey bread pudding (I KNOW) and heard/saw Celtic Spring perform. I'm not gonna lie, those kids give me girl wood. The little kid was awesome, too. When he would get up and do an amazing dance solo, he'd exit to wild applause, and then get straight back to his drawing with colored pencils just offstage. He was oblivious to the praise--so cool.

Then it was off to my friend's house. We watched This is Spinal Tap.

Sunday I read Penn Jillette's book God, No! and visited my parents for a few hours.

Great weekend!