Saturday, November 27, 2010

REPLY AWL

The book choice in the October issue of Readers Digest is Charlie: the life of a homechild. We often hear about the home children, but we are never given many details. I didn't know they actually had inspectors who came around to the farms; I thought they just assigned a child to a family and left things alone.

There is an exerpt from Douglas Coupland's new book, Player One, in the October 11 issue of Maclean's. I wonder if, in ten years, we will all become like Rachel: humanoids with no personality or ability to understand things like humour or irony.

The October 25 issue of Maclean's has an article about the gender gap between males and females. Young women interviewed for the article view men in their twenties as lazy and think twenty-something men don't have their priorities straight. Maybe this is partially due to the fact that they know there're no jobs out there and the fact men know women will get promoted ahead of them because they are women.

The November 1 issue of Maclean's has an article about people in London being told to shovel their own snow this winter. Some Londoners are up in arms about it. They say, "What about the elderly or infirmed who can't shovel their own snow?" or "It's our right to have the government shovel our snow for us." Uh, can't you shovel the snow for your neighbour's who are physically unable? It's your right to have the government shovel your snow? You've got to be kidding me. I have decided the entire population of the UK is collectively insane.

Monday, November 15, 2010

MAMA'S FAMILY (revised from an earlier post)

Lately, the 80's sitcom Mama's Family has been much on my mind. It has been over twelve years since I first started watching it on TBS.

For those who don’t know, Mama’s Family was a sitcom based on a sketch from “The Carol Burnette Show.” It debued in 1983 on NBC. NBC cancelled the show after a year and a half, and it was revived in syndication in the fall of 1986. The show’s setting was the fictional small town of Raytown, Missouri. I will tell more about the plot of Mama’s Family later on.

When I watched Mama’s Family twelve years ago, I thought it was one of the best shows ever created. Now I realize it had many flaws. The syndicated episodes were especially horrible, using all the hackneed sitcom plots you could think of: the family betting Mama she couldn't give up swearing and Mama betting the family couldn't give up something
else; Naomi getting hit on the head and thinking she was this attentive housewife, the opposite of her real personality; Mama falling asleep and dreaming she was in an old detective movie with the family playing the other characters; Vinton installing an intercom and accidentally overhearing Mama talk
about him behind his back.

I really think the Nbc years were better. For those unfamiliar with the early years of the show or who decry those years, here is the premise that puts the Nbc shows into perspective: Thelma Harper is an old lady living in a big house by herself, so she asks her artsy unmarried sister Francis Crowley to move in with her. Shortly after this, her son
Vinton shows up in Raytown from wherever he lived with his two teenage kids, Buzz and Sonja. So, to start off the sitcom,
you have two old ladies and these teenage kids who have been forced to move from the big city to smalltown Missouri. Shortly thereafter, Vinton begins dating Thelma’s next door neighbour, Naomi Oates, whom Thelma doesn’t get along with. Plus, Thelma has to deal with Eunice and Ellen, her other children who also live in Raytown.

Then the syndicated years come along with their ridiculous plot twists. Come on, Fran dies after swallowing a toothpick? Why Thelma isn't tried for manslaughter, I don't know. Bubba, Eunice’s son, is supposed to be a juvenile delinquent but doesn’t really act like one. And Iola? She's supposed to be in her forties, but she acts like she's in her sixties. She's lived in the house across the street all her life and is Thelma's best friend but we've never seen her before.

I suppose the show could have continued another eighteen years. Vinton and Naomi were not smart enough to actually move into a home of their own for long and it
would have been neat to see a baby grow up in that household.

The series would have ended in June of 2008 with Tiffany going off to college

Sunday, November 7, 2010

MARION'S ATTIC STILL ON THE AIR

Heard Marion's Attic at the usual time this afternoon. It appeared to be a new show with Baron Von Nite.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Brfxxccxxmnpcccclllmmnprxvclmnckssqlbb11116

This is a fake buzzed post.

I purchased my new mouth here a few months ago and it seems to be malfunctioning.

Hang on pupae, pupae hang on.

He was dressed all in fur from his thorax to his fingernail.

It sure is rainy out there, unless the sun is shining.

If a queen bee has a rival, it gets stung to death.

"Mommy, I can see through walls when I play with the dog."

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

RE ON RELIGION AND OUR GENERAL PLACE IN THE UNIVERSE

The following is something I took off a friend's blog. My comments are in parenthesis. I didn't exerpt the whole post. It starts after Barb, the blogger in question, has talked about the clerk at a convenience store telling her to come to his church to have Jesus restore her sight.

So it brings me back to my initial question. Do you not think that if Jesus wanted me to be different, I would be different? And the part that frustrates
me even more is, I have spoken to a few of my Christian friends about this, and a few in particular have said that maybe he’s right, and perhaps Jesus
will give me my sight back.

(If someone brings up the topic of Jesus healing you, just say, “I prefer to wait till His return.”)

So, let’s just break this down for a minute. First of all, you can’t give something back to someone if they never had it in the first place. Second, with
all due respect to my friends, that sounds to me like they think either Jesus is doing it wrong, or that he doesn’t like me the way I am so he will change
me. Except that I haven’t been given sight back. I hope never to get sight at all. What sighted people don’t realize is that if I were to have my sight
“restored”, it would screw me up majorly! I would have to relearn everything I’ve ever learned. People don’t think about how complex gaining a whole new
sense might be.

(Jesus could give you your sight. With God all things are possible. Also, if Jesus healed you, there wouldn’t be the complications that come from people getting their sight from surgery. When Jesus healed the blind in the Bible, there were no complications.)

And then, part of me wonders if the people who think Jesus is going to heal me think I’m less of a person, or I’m sick or diseased or something because
I’m blind. Why do they choose the word “heal”? I know it’s probably a silly thought, and really it doesn’t matter to me what the rest of them think, it
just got me to thinking, since I watched that DS9 episode.
And here’s the part that I’m not sure I should post, because I do not want to hurt or offend anyone, but it’s really bothering me, and the people about
whom I will talk already know my views, so I’m going to say it and not feel ashamed.

I have a friend. She is a very sweet, innocent girl, who grew up in a whole different culture from our own. She is smart, beautiful, and very giving and
caring towards others. She has a heart of gold, and I am glad we are friends.

The other week, we were talking, as I had not seen her all summer, and she told me she had discovered her sexuality, finally. I was really excited for
her! It was about time she was able to find people to whom she was attracted. But, she believes that she is wrong for the attraction. See, she is attracted
to women. And apparently, according to the Bible, homosexuality is wrong wrong wrong! So she proceeded to inform me that she was getting therapy to turn
her straight.

I was outraged. How can you honestly think that homosexuality is so wrong? Does the Bible not tell you to judge not lest ye be judged? Does it also not
say to love your neighbour? Is the whole point of the coming of Christ not love? I don’t remember the scripture that specifically says being gay is bad.
But I’m sure somebody’s going to find it for me, and that’s all well and good.

(First of all, the verse about not judging lest you be judged refers to not condemning people for something if you are doing the same thing as, or something worse than them. If I tell someone it’s wrong to steal, but I steal, then that would be wrong. If I told someone homosexuality was wrong but was homosexual, that would be wrong. Second, if I love my neighbour, then I will warn them against doing something that is wrong and dangerous.)

But this then brings me to ask another question. Is the Bible not an ancient text? And, was it not translated from… I don’t remember what the language
was, but the point is how many different translations of the Bible are out there? And how many times do we see different interpretations of the Bible?
And how do we, as humans, know what is the right translation? Doesn’t it seem a little… convenient? It feels like, when the head or heads of a Church decide
they don’t like something, they can find a translation of the Bible to back their argument. Then we come back to people blindly following the word of God,
because they feel that they have to, in order to get to Heaven or be right with the Lord or whatever it is they need. So, never mind that you are not attracted
to men in any way and that you might have to just spend the rest of your life alone, never dating anyone. That doesn’t matter as long as you get to Heaven
and be as perfect as you can be for your God? I’m sorry, but that doesn’t sound like a very fulfilling life to me. And if that’s what God honestly wants
me to do, I have no interest, thanks very much. I’m going to live my life to the fullest. I try to be a good person. I try to love people and show them
respect. Help people when they need it, and accept the fact that sometimes I need help too. I may not live the normal lifestyle that normal people are
used to, and you know what? It works for me, I don’t see how it infringes upon anyone else, and honestly? I’m happie3r for recognizing that about myself.

(There are thousands of people who have made a career out of studying, translating and comparing the ancient manuscripts of the Bible to ensure we have the correct translation today. This is known as textual criticism. Of course, people are going to mistranslate the Bible to suit their own purposes, but that shouldn’t dissuade you from finding out the truth about what the Bible says. As to homosexuals, specifically this girl, not being attracted to men and having to spend the rest of her life alone: if she believes it is wrong to be attracted to other women, she won’t be happy as a lesbian, either. I am going to pray that this girl’s therapy is successful and that she finds a wonderful man she can have a fulfilling heterosexual lifestyle with.)

I think, on some level, I have always believed in God, and in Jesus. I’ve learned about them since before I can remember. I was never taught that I should
live in fear constantly of doing wrong by God. I sometimes like to joke that Jesus was the original hippie. Think about it. He’s the son of a carpenter.
He’s got the long hair, and he went around the world, and what did he preach? Oh, that’s right, I remember! Peace and love!!!

(Jesus didn’t have long hair. That’s just the way artists paint Him. Men didn’t have long hair back in ancient Israel. Jesus also didn’t travel around the world. In fact, He never traveled more than forty miles from where he was born, although I could be wrong with the exact figure. He didn’t preach some new age peace and love that says whatever depraved thing you want to do is OK; He preached the perfect love of God that results from obeying His commandments. He preached the peace that will dwell in our hearts if we are in obedience to Him.)

I think there is a huge difference between being a spiritual person and being part of a church. I was speaking with my boyfriend and his family on the
subject the other day, because this is really bothering me, and he said that the one thing the Johova’s witnesses get right is that they call their building
a worship hall, or is it a temple? I can’t remember, but either way, it’s not a Church. The Church is the group of people who congregate and worship together.
And, as much as I know it angers a lot of Christians out there, I think I’m going to stick to believing in God and Jesus, but I really want no part of
the Church, thanks. If the Church can decide that they have the ultimate power over what I do in my life, I have no interest in a bunch of people being
so afraid of God, or whatever it is they feel, that they can tell me how I must live my life.

(You are correct that the church is the body of believers and not some particular denomination or building.

I don’t claim to know Jesus, or God at all really. I would like to think, though, that God is looking at these people and their claims to know everything
that God tells them since they always follow the Bible, and going “SeriouslyGuys?” I mean, I just think it’s ridiculous that someone should have to force
themselves to be something or someone they’re not just because the Church or a therapist employed by the Church says its wrong.

(Again I say, if this girl believes being a lesbian is wrong, she won’t be happy anyway. How is it forcing if a therapist is getting this girl to behave the way the girl herself wants to.)

One last rant, before I run out of energy and call it a day. I had another friend who just recently “went back to God”. She used to be married to another
friend of mine, who is also a woman. I wouldn’t say they were a happy couple, but there was absolutely no doubt in the first woman’s mind that she was
lesbian. She would never ever be interested in men. She had dated at least three women before the most current ex, and there was no question that she was
lesbian and that’s just how it was… Except now that she’s back to God, she’s become a gay hater too. OK, maybe not a hater, but she says that being gay
is absolutely wrong. The Bible says it’s against God’s rules, etc.

So can someone please explain to me how a woman that determined never to be straight again is now dating an older man, who, just to add to the drama, is
the ex husband of one of her ex wives. Do you honestly think that God just came to her one day and said “Hey Babe. Its time to straighten up and fly right”?
I’m sorry, but I have serious doubts there. But that’s a whole other post altogether, and really I don’t think I have the energy to go off on that rant
just now.

(Hey, things change. So, let’s break this down. You feel it was wrong for this woman to go straight. Therefore, if you were in charge of the universe, you would have had the woman stay a lesbian with her now ex-girlfriend. They weren’t a happy couple, which means they were an unhappy couple, and the woman in question had already failed to find happiness with three other girlfriends. Thus, you, Barb, the Goddess, Ruler Of The Universe, have locked this poor woman into an earthly life of going from partner to partner, never finding happiness. Gee, given a hypothetical choice between worshipping you and the God of the Bible, the God of the Bible seems like a much better choice right about now.)

For those of y’all who are still reading, I apologize for novel. Seriously, this is longer than any essay I’ve ever written, but I really needed to write
out my thoughts here, because some of this stuff just completely boggles my mind. For those who might be offended by what I’m on about, I apologize if
you were hurt by what I said. I do not take my words back, however. I have learned recently that you can still be someone’s friend and apologize, explaining
your intension was not to hurt anyone, but you can still stick by what you said and not feel guilty about it. Someone’s always going to get their feathers
ruffled over something. It doesn’t mean they are wrong, and it doesn’t necessarily mean I’m right. It just means we have differing opinions, and really,
what would be the fun in everyone thinking the same thing all the time?

(Which is exactly the reason it’s good there are different translations of the Bible and different denominations. It would be horrible if everybody thought the same thing about everything with no conjecture.)

EQUALITY AND THE IRRADICATION OF INEQUALITY

Following is something from someone else's blog. My comments are in parenthesis.

ClentonFarquharson  

Do we stand together on
Equality

In 21st century United Kingdom, “
inequality”
remains a great evil to be eradicated on our long journey to the wonderful world where, at last, all have real equality.

Up to 600,000 public sector jobs are under threat. Around 65% of public sector workers are women and will bear the brunt of these job losses. Women pensioners
already suffer more poverty than men and public sector job losses and attacks on public sector pensions are likely to widen this gap even further. Women
are far more likely to pay the cost of cuts in benefits and tax credits. A staggering 72% of these cuts are paid for by women and 38% from men – according
to figures from the House of Commons library, commissioned by Labour MP Yvette Cooper.

(That's the thing about working for the government: it's a cushy job with good pay and security ... until you become a liability.)

The scale of this war on low paid women may even land the government in legal hot water. The Fawcett Society is taking the government to court arguing that
ministers are legally obliged to consider the impact of its budget measures on equality.

(War on low paid women? The British government is cutting these jobs because it's in debt up to its eyeballs, not because it hates poor women. I guess if people are going to be landing in hot water, the Faucet Society is the organization you want to have on hand. Ministers are obliged to consider the impact of the cuts on equality? That's political correctness for you: utterly bankrupt the country just so women and minorities can keep their jobs. Just because you're penniless doesn't mean you shouldn't quit paying them.)

The ConDems are clinging on to the bizarre idea that they are ‘progressive’, but as reports like this demonstrate, they are anything but. The clock is being
turned back to the days before a welfare state and women are expected to pay the bulk of the cost.

(It's always interesting when people talk about being "progressive." Progressing towards what exactly?)

The ConDem coalition says it may cut government departmental spending by between 25% and 40%. Both Cameron and Clegg claim these are fair cuts; ‘we’re all
in this together’ is their mantra. In fact, the financial times reports that the poorest 20% in society rely on public services for over 60% of their incomes,
but the richest 20% are barely affected, being 5 times less dependent on public spending for their incomes.

(Don't worry. By the time your government over there in merry old England gets through, almost everybody will be equally poor. It'll be like Russia before the supposed death of communism. Junk shops will sell things like old locker tags and used fish hooks. You'll go into a restaurant. They'll have two things on the menu and you'll only be able to get a small amount of one of them with your ration card/chip in your hand or forehead.)

Do we really believe in
equality
? Or do we like the rhetoric of being a country that says we do, yet in action we don’t?

Does it matter?

Why should we care?