Couldn't think of a cool title…

August 13, 2009

Blogging?

Filed under: Uncategorized — me @ 12:39 pm

Just back from a great conference, still coming down from my inspiration high. I’ve been thinking a lot this week about this blog and the potential for starting a second one, more as an extension of my Professional Self. I am convinced that I have some things to contribute to my tiny little field, and I’m also looking for ways to unpack my thoughts after conferences and reading articles and such. I’m definitely on the precipice of article writing, doctoral study, or SOMETHING, and a blog seems like a means to sort some of all that out. When asked what my professional objective really is, the answer I’ve come up with is that I want to be a contribution to my field. Whether or not my “job” will always be in exact line with this objective is less important to me, as long as somehow I am a part of the dialogue and growth of this thing I feel so passionately about.

So– here’s the issue. Do I create a webpage that looks something like this, perhaps with a blog component– that theoretically could serve as a potentail space to find likeminded individuals and also to network/find potential work? Or do I attempt, as Ucellina says, to guard my “paper-thin internet anonymity” and thereby feel less inclined to self-censor, more protected from stalkers, etc.??

Whatcha think?

May 31, 2009

Pentecost and Today’s News

Filed under: News Worth Knowing, Spirituality, Uncategorized — me @ 3:31 pm

Went to church for the first time in a long while, where several 14 year olds were getting “confirmed”– a process I was never subjected to but might have actually enjoyed as a kid. It happens to also be Pentecost Sunday, which is the day the Holy Spirit descended on the disciples and they famously could speak in tongues. If you had asked me what Pentecost was before the Service I would have made a bad guess and even now I’m only marginally sure how to spell it.

I learned a few things today, such as that the Holy Spirit, linguistically speaking, is without a doubt feminine. There are many (valid) reasons to debate whether God should be referred to in the masculine but there is no question that the words in Hebrew and Greek that are used to describe the Holy Spirit are feminine. Pentecost, the minister told the young confirmands, is emblematic of Christianity– to be so taken with the Holy Spirit that outsiders will gossip Are They Drunk? It’s interesting to me that this holiday has no Hallmark cards or special candies, no traditional feasting to speak of– is known as “the church’s birthday.” So the Christian church was born in mysticism– feminine mysticism at that– a radically inclusive and dramatic flash of joyful connection– and now it’s anniversary year is celebrated so often as a footnote shrouded by often inhibited churchgoers in their Sunday best, who barely know their own neighbors let alone the people in the pew nearby. Where is the intrigue, the adventure in the re-telling of it all? So little surprises people anymore, is it a wonder there isn’t excited debate going on during “coffee and conversation” time each Pentecost Sunday?

I love the story of Pentecost as a Tower of Babel in reverse– suddenly people of all different backgrounds found a common language, a reason to connect, a hurrah in their hearts as the Holy Spirit descended on them all. There is perhaps no better example of the radical inclusivity of God’s love than this  particular testimony, and no better directive towards community and diverse assembly in doing His Work. We are called to talk to each other, despite sometimes seeming insurmountable differences.

Thinking in this light, it makes this tragedy all the more outrageous. Forget politics. Any theology that supports this murder is bullshit.

January 26, 2009

Tearjerker of the Day

Filed under: Uncategorized — me @ 3:18 am

But in a good way.

January 9, 2009

100 Questions

Filed under: Uncategorized — me @ 6:24 am

1) Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed? My closet doesn’t have a door. If I had a closet with a door I would probably have it closed.

2) Do you take the shampoo and conditioner bottles from hotels? Rarely

3) Do you sleep with your sheets tucked in or out? Usually out

4) Have you ever stolen a street sign before? No. I’ve never had any desire to whatsoever either.

5) Do you like to use post-it notes? Absolutely! Hooray for office supplies.

6) Do you cut out coupons, but then never use them? Sometimes

7) Would you rather be attacked by a big bear or a swarm of bees? Um, can I go with none of the above?

8) Do you have freckles? A couple

9) Do you always smile for pictures? Generally

10) What is your biggest pet peeve? Obnoxious behavior by performers during their curtain calls.

11) Do you ever count your steps when you walk? Sometimes.

12) Have you ever peed in the woods? Yes, long story

13) What about pooped in the woods? No

14) Have you ever danced even when there’s no music playing? Sure have

15) Do you chew your pens and pencils? Sometimes

16) How many people have you slept with this week? None

17) What size is your bed? Queen

18) What is your song of the week? Chain of Fools

19) Is it OK for guys to wear pink? People can wear whatever they want.

20) Do you still watch cartoons? Occasionally when I’m bored and there’s nothing else on.

21) What’s your least favorite movie? Congo

22) Where would you bury hidden treasure if you had some? I dunno, I don’t really own any land for burying things in

23) What do you drink with dinner? Too often a diet coke with lemon

24) What do you dip a chicken nugget in? Regular mustard

25) What is your favorite food? Mandarin oranges. Or macaroni salad. Or oatmeal raisin cookies.

26) What movies could you watch over and over and still love? Life is Beautiful, Akeela and the Bee, An American Tail

27) Last person you kissed/kissed you? BestNieceEver

28) Were you ever a boy/girl scout? Yes I was a Brownie and a Junior Girl Scout, but when we moved in sixth grade we couldn’t find an active troop around here

29) Would you ever strip or pose nude in a magazine? No

30) When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone in the paper? I don’t think I’ve ever written a letter for a newspaper

31) Can you change the oil in a car? I’ve been taught a couple times but I’m not confident about it. It’s the kind of thing I instantly forget after I learn.

32) Ever gotten a speeding ticket? One

33) Ran out of gas? Too many times– at least 4 that I can think of

34) Favorite kind of sandwich? Veggie delite from subway

35) Best thing to eat for breakfast? fruit and yogurt

36) What is your usual bedtime? After 11 but before 2

37) Are you lazy? Not about most things

38) When you were a kid, what did you dress up as for Halloween? Pumpkin, Tinkerbell, Wizard, Clown, Heidi, Pirate

39) What is your Chinese astrological sign? Horse, which is sort of funny since I’m allergic to them

40) How many languages can you speak? Fluently? 1. I had a year or more of training in French, Spanish, Russian, and American Sign Language, but I’m not even approaching fluency in any of them.

41) Do you have any magazine subscriptions? No but I’ve been thinking of subscribing to Real Simple magazine because a kid I know’s scout troop is fundraising by selling magazines and I think I would actually read that

42) Which are better – Legos or Lincoln Logs? Legos. I think.

43) Are you stubborn? I have my moments.

44) Who is better – Leno or Letterman? Letterman. I think.

45) Ever watch soap operas? In late high school/early college (I think) I briefly got mildly into Days of Our Lives. I haven’t watched an episode in at least ten years.

46) Afraid of heights? Sometimes, but not much. Doing lighting so much got that out of me.

47) Sing in the car? Often

48) Dance in the shower? No, not much room for that and sounds kind of dangerous

49) Ever used a gun? No

50) Last time you got a portrait taken by a photographer? A portrait? College.

51) Do you think musicals are cheesy? Some are

52) Is Christmas stressful? Sometimes, but it also gives me a peace I don’t have much of the rest of the year

53) Ever eat a pierogi? Pretty sure

54) Favorite type of fruit pie? Peach

55) Occupations you wanted to be when you were a kid? Writer, actor

56) Do you believe in ghosts? Sorta

57) Ever have a deja-vu feeling? Yes

58) Take a vitamin daily? No

59) Wear slippers? No. My brother-in-law got me Eeyore slippers once so I own them but…

60) Wear a bathrobe? Yes I have a pink and white terrycloth one.

61) What do you wear to bed? Depends but I have a lot of comfy pajama pants.

62) First concert? Billy Joel

63) Walmart, Target or Kmart? Target. There’s one near my apartment now and the uber-convenience of it all is rather staggering

64) Nike or Adidas? Oh whatever, it’s the same difference

65) Cheetos or Fritos? Fritos

66) Peanuts or sunflower seeds? Peanuts, usually

67) Ever hear of the group Tres Bien? No

68) Ever take dance lessons? Yes– tap, jazz, modern, ballet– but not a lot of it. Modern was my favorite.

69) Is there a profession you picture your future spouse doing? Not really

70) Can you curl your tongue? Yes

71) Ever won a spelling bee? INo

72) Have you ever cried because you were so happy? Absolutely

73) Own any record albums? I think I technically own a record of Mary Poppins music that’s in my parents’ basement somewhere

74) Own a record player? No!

75) Regularly burn incense? No

76) Ever been in love? Not exactly

77) Who would you like to see in concert? Trans-Siberian Orchestra

78) What was the last concert you saw? Paul McCartney I think. Also almost 10 years ago

79) Hot tea or cold tea? Cold mostly

80) Tea or coffee? It varies

81) Sugar cookies or snickerdoodles? Sugar cookies, but I like oatmeal raisin better

82) Can you swim well? Yes

83) Can you hold your breath without holding your nose? Um yes

84) Are you patient? I think I am extremely patient, but my patience in a lot of areas of my life has been tested recently so I feel like my fuse is shorter than it once was

85) DJ or Band at a wedding? Tough call but I guess a band. My sister’s wedding had a DJ and he was a tool, which annoyed me.

86) Ever won a contest? I’ve one little raffles here and there.

87) Ever have plastic surgery? No

88) Which are better, black or green olives? I have no idea

89) Can you knit or crochet? Neither

90) Best room for a fireplace? Bedroom would be pretty sweet

91) Do you want to get married? One day

92) If married, how long have you been married? N/A

93) Who was your HS crush? I had several crushes on several different guys and most of them never had any idea.

94) Do you cry and throw a fit until you get your own way? No

95) Do you have kids? No

96) Do you want kids? Yes

97) What’s your favorite color? Dark green

98) Do you miss anyone right now? Yes

99) Did you watch “Next Great American Band” on FOX? Never heard of it

100) Would you like other people to see your survey answers? Sure! That’s why I posted them here! 🙂

December 2, 2008

The Year After College

Filed under: Uncategorized — me @ 4:23 am

Went back to see how far along I had gotten with my little Memory Game, figure I might as well get back into it.

After I got through my wonderously adventurous summer-after-college I was an overhire electrician for a couple of theatres and ran a sound board of sorts for a local regional theatre’s fall show. I took a couple of classes towards my teaching certification, partly because I knew I would eventually want it and knew it wasn’t going to get any easier to do so. As it ended up my grandmother passed away in December that year and in the end I never made up the credit lost on one of the two classes.

I had dreaded my grandmother’s funeral for a few years at that point, more so because it would force an encounter between my mother and my aunt than anything else. I remember my mother burst into tears when she saw the casket, and after a few moments of sobbing my aunt was pushing her along to admire some flowers in another room and I wanted to shake her and say “Just let her be SAD for a moment would you!!” It was the only sound given to real emotion in the entire time we were there. I left feeling sorry for my aunt and my uncles, and most of all for my mother– it must require so much discipline to hold so much in for so long. It was shortly after the Bush-Gore recount mess and it seemed that my uncles reveled in arguing with me about the NRA and the economy– maybe it took their mind off of it all.

I moved into my first apartment a a couple months later and I remember Professor’sFamily telling the Kids that I was moving out because I had to grow up. I cried the day I moved– not wanting to walk out of this chapter of my life and into the next. I really loved my apartment though– my own parking space, my own kitchen, organizing my things and putting my mark on the place. 5 years later I would struggle again in leaving and I guess that’s just what I’ve so often been about, coming into what’s Next with a lot of kicking and screaming, mourning my own growing up.

December 1, 2008

World AIDS Day today

Filed under: Uncategorized — me @ 9:41 pm

A friend of mine did her undergraduate thesis project on AIDS. She found that a lot of people in our generation said that they “weren’t affected” by AIDS, and it was her position that this couldn’t possibly be true. The world was different with the advent of AIDS, and although I did not lose a loved one to AIDS, I feel like it was an issue in the background from a young age– a matter sometimes on the periphery but one that was not going to go away. It was a fact of the culture I grew up in, as much as the advent of personal computers were.

My suburban Midwest elementary school saw fit, in 1987 or 1988, when I was in 4th grade, to teach me about AIDS before they taught me about menstruation. It is an odd distinction, to be old enough for sex ed at just the moment when the first moments of sensible information about AIDS had filtered through to the school systems. My introduction to AIDS came in the form of a video with Dr. GoodBody, and I remember very little about it except that it emphasized that SOME PEOPLE think AIDS can be spread from kissing, sharing toothbrushes (ew!), and toilet seats but that those people are wrong. I think that the actual subject of sex was sort of skirted around in a general statement of “AIDS is spread through blood-to-blood contact.” This seems rather absurd to me now– attempting to discuss AIDS without mentioning sex at all– but this was in the days of Ryan White— and I wonder if there was a sense then that there could be more and more children with AIDS– hemophiliacs with tainted blood transfusions, children of IV drug users– entering the school system. This theory is supported by the number of TV shows I remember doing Ryan White shout-outs– a Mr. Belvedere episode about a child with hemophilia moving into town, and a family court show in which the controversey was over whether it was criminal for a child with AIDS to become “blood brothers” with his best friend. Yes, it’s clear that by the time I graduated elementary school I was after-school specialed out on this particular topic. While I  don’t think the word Gay was used in that Dr. GoodBody video, I vividly remember it was in one I had to watch in 7th grade, this time in a NorthEast urban and notoriously failing district. In the movie, two high school students enacted writing a report for school. As they try to choose a topic one says “We should do our project on AIDS,” and the other student says, “You mean, we should do our project on Gay people?” And from there the wiser student educates the other as to how misinformed she is. So I don’t think I was fully clear as to what Gay was, but I was assured (?) that it was stupid to think just gay people get AIDS.

It strkes me as interesting, that I was introduced to the misinformation WITH the factual information, at a time when I had no actual experience to draw on. Is that an effective deterrant to prejudice? Not sure. (As a parallel, I imagine there were social studies classrooms this fall where teachers said “SOME PEOPLE think Barack Obama is a muslim terrorist. But of course that is not true.” — Does the suggestion of the possibility contribute to the problem?) I would actually say that, if anything, this approach made me INtolerant of anyone who hadn’t had the benefit of the education I had had– I couldn’t understand the process by which views change and attitudes evolve.  It is indisputable that I had more information than had previously been available even a few years before, but I think it is a fair question as to what made this more significant than other basic sex ed lessons. And what was the result of this? Sex ed for me in later years would be more multiple choice exams, this time on the symptoms of chlamydia and syphillis– maybe these lessons helped one of my classmates, maybe they saved their lives. For me, my sense though is that this Sex Causes Diseases curricula I was exposed to did little but fuck me over a bit as I navigated my way through adolescence and beyond. I believe my basic conclusion by 7th grade was — now WHY would anyone want to have sex? The Bush Administration’s Abstinence Brigade would be proud.

What bothers me more though, is that whatever level of demystification all this “education” was intended to do, I was never introduced to a person with AIDS. I was never really encouraged to find a way to help those suffering or those caring for the suffering. My progressive school system found a a way to make sure I would not be afraid of catching AIDS from sitting next to someone on a bus, but it did not attempt to address the larger issues of a culture afraid of sickness, afraid of death and dying. I suppose this is why I didn’t know what hospice was until after college.

I wonder what AIDS Education in K-12 is like now. So many advances have been made in changing this from a disease people simly “die from” to one people “live with.” I imagine the tenor of the teaching must be different now that it is no longer a new problem. The urgency might not be there. I can’t imagine that a lack of urgency would make the disease and those affected by it less invisible. Perhaps with a more informed populace there is less of a perceived need to tell middle schoolers that SOME PEOPLE think hateful things that aren’t true. It’s hard to know.

I have known now about AIDS for 20 years. It has been with us for almost 30. May a cure be found soon.

November 5, 2008

Proud of America tonight

Filed under: Uncategorized — me @ 6:17 am

That’s all there really is to say. Except that my most excited moment tonight was finding out that Ohio went to Obama. I wasn’t sure it was possible, what with it being ground central for voter suppression and the home state of my (beloved but) hopelessly rightwing Uncles (the ones who think Bush isn’t conservative enough)– driving around Dayton back in 2000 when my grandmother passed away (in the middle of the whole recount mess) was a sea of Bush-Cheney lawn signs. Having lived out the majority of my elementary school years in Ohio, it holds a special place in my heart. I’m proud of Ohio tonight, and I’m hopeful for the future of this country.

Maybe the novelty will wear off soon and my optimism fade, but when the impossible becomes not only possible but actual– one has to stand back and honor the miracle before us.

There’s a going to be a grown up leading the country now. Talk about novel.

November 4, 2008

I Donated to Barack Obama’s Campaign Tonight

Filed under: Uncategorized — me @ 5:28 am

I don’t know what Obama is going to do with $30 hours before the election. But I hope that somehow that money will do its small best to counteract this insane anti-democracy voter disenfranchisement that is being attempted throughout the country. I don’t care who people are voting for (honestly!)– but it sickens me that anyone could have their right to vote threatened. As someone who grew up in Ohio and whose beloved (yet rightwing) uncles live in that state, I’ve been especially interested in the news on that front there. I’m a little afraid to hope for what I hope for for tomorrow. But most of all, on the outside chance it doesn’t go the way I want it to, I really don’t want it to be because registered voters were turned away at the polls, ballots were thrown out, and poor people convinced it would be too hard to vote.  It’s an honor and privilege that shouldn’t be tampered with.

SO GO VOTE PEOPLE!

September 9, 2008

Its Really Close to Happening

Filed under: Uncategorized — me @ 2:22 pm

I’m going to resign. I’ve let certain people who might be able to find me work know. My friends know. I just have to get up the nerve to let my boss know. And hope its the right decision. There’s a long list of reasons its the right decision, I know that– and Doctor would list them for you, as would many of my friends and probably my family too if they were here right now. But it doesn’t make it any less painful. I feel as though I’ve been put in this situation where I have to get out– and I kind of resent it all for not being perfect. I know I have to mourn this, and I know there will be a point, maybe even pretty quickly, when I will be grateful and know this was the right thing. I’m just not really enjoying the journey to that point as its playing out so far, and I’m not looking forward to the time between now and then right now.

August 30, 2008

Just slightly awesome

Filed under: Uncategorized — me @ 11:06 pm
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