Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Congratulations are in order

To Brian, who landed a first-rate job at a place he's afraid to identify for fear we'll all show up expecting free meals....

And to Timotheos, who is now to be known as the Reverend Ass. May he serve the Lord long and faithfully.

Blessed are the peacemakers

In the west, we tend to forgt that not all inter-Christian disputes are Catholic versus Protestant. Patriarch Teoctist took a step that has no equivalent in the Protestant world, inviting the Patriarch of Rome (who from Teoctist's POV was an apostate) to meet with an easstern Patriarch for the first time in nearly a thousand years. This after years of walking a fine line to keep his church alive through a regime that was notorious for bloodthirstiness even in an age of anti-Christian tyrants. Call him conciliatory if you like; you and I weren't in his shoes. And notice that the Romanian Orthodox Church is still there, and Ceausescu isn't. Survival is a victory.

God give Patriarch Teoctist the rest and reward that's been waiting for him.

So what's the problem?

I don't see that they can charge her with anything except maybe practicing medicine without a license. It's not like the "victims" were human.

Monday, July 30, 2007

This is exactly how it is

I ran across this Dilbert cartoon last week as I was postinng my woes. It's now the desktop picture on my office computer. I'm beyond caring if anybody notices it or not.

This is what priests do

Perverts in collars may sell more papers, but for every lousy priest, there must be a hundred like this that aren't getting the publicity:
he first encounter on the Rev. Ed Hallinan's sunset stroll through North Philadelphia is telling.
Girls playing on a broken sidewalk near trash broiling in the heat greet the priest warmly, in spite of their surroundings.

A young mother sitting on her front steps scowls, as if to say she long ago succumbed to hers.

On these steps, in this African American neighborhood, a white stranger bearing blessings had best keep walking.

That - the anger, suspicion, and resignation that no one, not even men claiming to be sent by God, can change anything - is why Hallinan keeps showing up uninvited.

Yes, some neighbors are dying in the gunfights in the 22d Police District, home of some of the highest shooting rates in the city.

But what about all the people who are alive, if not entirely well?

"We need to be present," says Hallinan, the longtime pastor at St. Martin de Porres Roman Catholic Church at 24th and Lehigh.

"It's easy to be overwhelmed by the problems and withdraw, but in withdrawing, you take away people's human dignity and worth," adds Bishop Joseph McFadden, who likes to join Hallinan for the weekly walks.

Rocco at Whispers in the Loggia knows Fr. Hallinen personally, and has a lot more detail to fill in. Next time you hear someone sneer at a priest, show them this. As forcefully as necessary.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

My pooch, my choice

Sometimes I'm proud to share a planet with Tim Bayly:
Yoohoo! Earth to Richmond! Someone needs to speak up for Michael Vick and tell all the wackos outside the courthouse dissing him that he has the right to do what he wants with his dog. If he wants to electrocute or shoot his pit bull, that's his choice and some group of old white men have no right making laws against it, let alone arresting and making a public spectacle of him before the watching world.

I mean, Vick isn't forcing anyone else to electrocute their dog. He's just exercising his very personal choice to do what he wants with his own dog.

Think about it. Any idiot can see dogs aren't fully persons. They can't write or converse or take philosophy courses. In fact, aside from Princeton's Peter Singer, few people in their right minds would put a dog on the same level even as an unborn or newborn child. And there's no law against killing babies, is there?

Read the whole thing.

I would've gotten 100% if it weren't for those meddling kids!

Scooby Doo: Ripped from the Headlines?

Score: 90% (9 out of 10)

Is it real, or is it an episode of Scooby-Doo? A/T to Miss Cellania.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

One possible life preserver

There is one bright spot after the post above. I interviewed today for a second job that may pay enough to get us out of this bottleneck, and I think I have a better-than-average chance at getting it. Trouble is it doesn't start until September, although that's kind of up in the air as it's a grant-funded thing. Still, I'll grasp at any straw I can.

And I'll stop bellyaching now. I'm sorry for pulling such a downer the last few days. Normal blogging will resume when time allows.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Let this be a lesson to you.

Pay your taxes. Pay your bills. If you have an ex, pay her what she demands and then let her get away with getting a little more. If you're a single dad, ignore the fact that you never see a nickel in child support for the kid you are raising, and just be grateful you have her at all. Don't complain.

Work hard. With dedication and loyalty. Chip in overtime off the clock if you have to, to make sure your project comes through on time and in budget. Cover your co-workers' hinies at every turn. Believe your boss when he talks about advancement prospects and exciting opportunities. Take on night jobs, weekend jobs, side jobs, whatever it takes. Don't complain.

Love your family. Do whatever you have to to keep your kids safe and well-cared-for. Cook their meals. Clean up after them. Love them twice as hard when they're mired in puberty and all you want to do is kick their sorry asses around the block. Protect them from their own stupidities, no matter what the cost, even if you have to stand guard outside their windows at night. Pass up good job opportunities because they would interfere with your parenting. Be a good husband: faithful, loving, and solicitous. Make your wife as happy as you possibly can. Don't complain.

The end result will be that you'll wind up almost forty, with your credit cards maxed out, working like a dog for a pittance in a dead-end job. You'll still have your wife (you picked a good one, after all), but she'll be miserable beyond your ability to comfort. You'll lose your house, you'll run out of food, and you won't even be able to hire a lawyer to protect your right to see the child you've been paying so much money for.

Let this be a lesson to you: This is what happens to decent, honest men who don't complain. They wind up a washed-up, bankrupt, self-pitying joke.

But for God's sake, keep it to yourself. Nobody likes a complainer.

That'll teach him

Always respect your elders. You never know when one of them might whale the bejabbers out of you.
Just after 6 a.m., the 50-year-old man pulled into the drive-through of Burger King, 1322 Erie Ave., where he saw a 70-year-old customer sitting outside the restaurant. The 50-year-old man yelled at the 70-year-old man, who later told officers he didn't know the younger man.

The driver went through the drive-through, got his food and pulled around into the parking area, where he got out of his car and again confronted the 70-year-old.

The driver told the older man: "I'll take you out. You're not fast enough, old man," and tried to grab him by the collar. The 70-year-old man, backed up to a wall, responded by throwing his cup of hot coffee at the other man.

The driver then punched the 70-year-old, a former amateur boxer who responded by delivering a series of blows to the man, driving him backward.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Tammy Faye Bakker Messner, RIP

And I mean that literally. Requiescat in pacem. May the Lord grant her rest in a place where there's no cancer, no pain, and no reporters lurking outside the door watching for some minor thing to make vicious fun of.

Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord. And may perpetual light shine upon her.

"Dear piece of trash..."

I want to nominate this guy for an honorary award in next week's Friday [Fornicate]-Off Thread over at It Comes in Pints. The letter is mostly clean, and I'm sure his opponent will make a big deal of it at the next election, but I think this is worthy of the honor, especially coming from an elected official.

BTW, it looks like my hard drive is fine. I'm not sure what I did to fix it (all the cables and ribbons looked tight), but if it works, I can let my curiosity go unabated.

Friday, July 20, 2007

I am, huh?

This may have been the most comprehensive personality test I've ever seen online.

And with that, I'm outta here. Blogging will be seldom this weekend, more so than usual, as my hard drive got toasted in a thunderstorm a few days ago. Anything I do online has to be done either at work or on my Lovely and Brilliant Wife's computer. And it's no easy task luring her away from it. I get the best results by ringing the front doorbell and then running into the bedroom from the back door.

Trust me! Would I lie to you?

Sort of like a drug dealer assuring you that crack really isn't bad for you at all. It's just a myth. Have some; you'll feel better.

A/T to Mary E..

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Let me get this straight

Bishops covering up for child molesters: bad.
Abortionists covering up for child molesters: good.

I guess it comes down to the money. Got it.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

One for my dad

Today my dad would have been 64. I have more to post about him, after some things I found out on the Fourth of July, but that's going to take some time. (And an early-morning thunderstorm seems to have toasted my hard drive at home! Curse, swear, blaspheme...) As I mentioned on Memorial Day, my dad passed away in 1994 from a brain tumor that's been linked to Agent Orange. While he never made a big deal about being a vet, I think he'd get a chuckle out of what I found on Wicked Thoughts this morning:
The Army found they had too many officers and decided to offer an early retirement bonus. They promised any officer who volunteered for retirement a bonus of $1,000 for every inch measured in a straight line between any two points in his body. The officer got to choose what those two points would be.

The first officer who accepted asked that he be measured from the top of his head to the tip of his toes. He was measured at six feet and walked out with a bonus of $72,000.

The second officer who accepted was a little smarter and asked to be measured from the tip of his outstretched hands to his toes. He walked out with $96,000.

The third one was a non-commissioned officer, a grizzly old Chief who, when asked where he would like to be measured replied, "From the tip of my weenie to my testicles." It was suggested by the pension officer that he might want to reconsider, explaining about the nice big bonuses the previous two officers had received. But the old Chief insisted and they decided to go along with him providing the measurement was taken by a medical officer.

The medical officer arrived and instructed the Chief to "drop 'em," which he did. The medical officer placed the tape measure on the tip of the Chief's weenie and began to work back. Dear Lord!" he suddenly exclaimed, "Where are your testicles?"

The old Chief calmly replied, "Vietnam."

Happy birthday, Dad! Hoist a cold one (and I hope you're not somewhere that cold things are in short supply)!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Prayer request

It's for Emily this time. Her brother (called simply J) is colossally screwed up, and she's getting to the point that she can't take him anymore. (At that, she's a better sibling than I would be; I doubt that I could have lasted this long.) Read her rant (language alert) and see if you don't hurt for her situation.

So I'm tossing out a prayer request: strength and grace for Emily, and that J gets his manure together before he runs out of family members to alienate. Anyone who prays, please do so any way you can. I don't do it often, but I'm bringing in reinforcements on this one. (Sorry, Pilgrim!)

St. Germaine, friend of abused children, pray for Emily, that her strength might be renewed, that her kindness might not be exhausted, and that she might last long enough to see her brother return the love she's shown him.

St. Jude, champion of hopeless causes, pray for J, that he might experience healing in his soul, that he might learn remorse for the wrongs he's done, and that he might be pulled from the destructive cycle that escalates in him daily. It looks impossible to us, but nothing is impossible for God, and you've been granted tougher miracles than this.

And Holy Mother, pray for them both. Amen.

Saying what must never be said

A gay man gets honest about the pervo-priest situation:
The perpetrators were for the most gay men preying on adolescent boys. Having the ability to be married to women would not have made them less attracted to adolescent boys and young men. It's not as if their actions were the result of some sort of displaced heterosexual urge. The men responsible were sexually and emotionally screwed up gay men.

The issue that needs to be addressed is not whether priests should be married. What really needs to be dealt with is how the Church relates to gay men and women. As a first step they can stop naively viewing gay men as poor little victims who happen to have a really big cross to bear. This gives believers a quick and pat answer for the gay issue and usually has the effect of forcing gay people into a deep and painful emotional solitariness.

A good second step would be to reevaluate the means by which men are examined for acceptance into the seminary. There are some men who are so emotionally immature, even after having finished college or worked for several years, that they should never be considered for acceptance into the seminary. There are obviously gay men who are able to fulfill the demands of a celibate life that is required for the priesthood, so rest assured I am not saying candidates should be screened for sexuality. It just seems obvious that the priesthood is perfectly logical hiding place for many men who find it easier to ignore and suppress their homosexuality than to face it. In the process they likely to development intricate means of emotional survival that are often very unhealthy. The end result is sometimes the sort of abuse of young men that we have seen and for which the Church is paying billions.

It never fails to astound me the lengths to which people will go to avoid acknowledging that the priests who molested boys for so many years were not pedophiles. Pedophiles go after prepubescent children, which was almost never the case. With very few exceptions, the fondling fathers were chickenhawks.

Ah, but in today's society, chickenhawks don't exist. You see, gay people are all well-adjusted, monogamous family people just like you and me. In the rush to abandon the idea that all homosexuals are promiscuous and depraved (which is indeed an unfair stereotype), we've swung the pendulum so far that we dare not say that any homosexuals are promiscuous or depraved. If we do, we are quickly shouted down. We are only allowed to take note of Will and Grace, never of Michael Devlin. We may talk about Matthew Shepard, but Jesse Durkhising is taboo.

If we can't attribute the fault to the gay men themselves (because gays simply don't do things like that), then the flaw must lie in the Church itself. So when we're presented with the conundrum of the pervo-priest scandal, the cry goes up "If only priests could marry! If only women could be priests!" The latter is impossible; the former would be pointless. In the Catholic Church, marriage is by definition between a man and a woman (and secular gay marriage won't change that), and the offenders are not heterosexuals.

But when the Vatican tried to address the problem a couple of years ago, it was met with howls of fury. How dare the Church discriminate against gay men that way? Some way must be found to protect children while reserving the feelings of potential predators. So while the church hemorrhages money for the past sins of gay priests, we're expected to ordain more of them. It's like forbidding sheep to discriminate against wolves by staying in their folds.

Because pro-gay advocates are right in one regard: you can't tell a chickenhawk just by looking at him. If a homosexually-oriented man will adhere to his vows of celibacy just like a straight one would, great. But when they're going to be in a vocation that will involve a lot of time alone with young men (and being a clergyman of any denomination does), there's more temptation available for a gay man than a straight one. We shouldn't have to find out the hard way which men have what it takes to keep his vows, simply because it can't be talked about. I'm impressed that Patrick is willing to say what must not be said.

Not a good sign

Chavez replaces statue of the Virgin with one of Che Guevera. Renamed the hospital after Che, too, in place of Our Lady of Coromoto.

Even for a Communist, this takes a lot of gall. Besides the symbolism of replacing a symbol of Christian mercy with one of atheistic brutality, it also seems likely to create a lot of resentment among the masses, most of whom haven't abandoned their religion.
All those who are familiar with the characteristics of the people of Venezuela know that they are devotedly Catholic and that they have a profound devotion for the Virgen de Coromoto. To the Venezuelans, the Virgen de Coromoto is a symbol of spiritual union, of Christian faith that is beyond the agnostic sectors that exist or could exist in the country.

When will these tinpot dictators figure out that you can take away the people's political power, but you can't take away their God?
If that sounds familiar, it's because it is:
You make a mockery of all that we hold sacred here
You drive us underground in hopes that we will disappear
We seek our sanctuary where the altar candle burns
Our dignity's a legacy the cross of Jesus reaffirms

In a culture where mothers are sacred, dishonoring the Mother of God seems like a really, really bad idea. I think Chavez has taken on more than he can handle.

A/T to Magic Statistics.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

I only spent six years in Portland

Not even that, really, as the last year or so I was commuting down from Ariel, which at 50-ish miles, still took less time than my co-workers' commute from Beaverton. Really.

You are 95% Oregon

Congratulations! You are a native Oregonian. Pick up your honorary singing salmon plaque at City Hall.

How Oregon are you?
Quizzes for MySpace

Then again, I also grew up in Goldendale, and all our TV and radio stations came from Oregon. I grew up watching Ramblin' Rod. Does that count for anything?

A/T to Brian, a lone conservative in Berkeley North.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

I think I get the idea

Stealing this meme from Ken (to whom I owe a few of them ). I guess I'm supposed to do a word-association with a given series of words. So here's mine:

1. Happen :: [Vulgar word for fecal matter]

2. Terribly :: sorry, old chap!

3. History :: Is made by stupid people

4. Master :: 's voice

5. Petrified :: Forest (Thank you, Bogie and Bette!)

6. Moan :: Troubles

7. Attack :: Of the Killer Tomatoes (Which I've actually never seen)

8. Picture :: Perfect My Lovely and Brilliant Wife is right across the room; my thoughts were thus occupied.

9. Students :: Pissants. I've taught junior high for my church, and briefly high-school French.

10. Potter :: 's Field.

Praise be to God!

Just a few months ago, it was almost certain that little Mary Claire wasn't going to be having a sixth birthday. Now, she's cancer free, and ready to go about the serious business of growing up healthy.

Everyone who prayed (or just offered kind thoughts), thank you. God listens, even to those who don't think they're on speaking terms with Him.

(Oh, and Cholo? Bite me.)

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

High-tech confessional

I'll bet it would force a lot of people back onto the straight and narrow really fast!

A/T to the lovely and presumably-virtuous Miss Cellania.

Bluebells will be flown at half-mast

Whatever you thought of her husband's politics, Lady Bird Johnson was a class act. I'm told that if it were possible, Texas would have elected her queen. Unanimously.

Travel in elephants, ma'am.

Friday, July 06, 2007

But wait... there's more!

If you order now, we'll throw in this snorkel, absolut-ly free!

A tip of the Akubra to Wicked Thoughts.

Monday, July 02, 2007

I can live with it

what redneck are you?
Your Result: hank Jr

a bottle of jack and a few rowdy friends is your life. you like country music and just hanging around. you know what its like to be laid up here in a country state of mind

ted nugent
david allen coe
hillary clinton
what redneck are you?
Make a Quiz

I think it's amusing that the only reason I didn't come out as David Allan Coe is that I'm not in prison. A tip of a beat-up goat-ropin' hat to Miss C, who's also Bocephus.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

I wish more store owners would do this

How To Keep Thieves From Stealing Beer - Watch more free videos
Little pissants steal beer, little pissants get chased out of the store with an AK-47. Sounds about right to me.

A/T to Glenn Sacks.

Seems a bit drastic

I get some weird Google searches referring readers here, usually foot fetish searches and such. But this has to take the cake. I wonder what use the person was going to make of the information. Or maybe I'm better off not knowing.