Thursday, May 25, 2006

Interesting Quote

"America is a Jesus-haunted culture, but at the same time, it's a biblically illiterate culture," Witherington says. "When you have that odd combination, almost anything can pass for knowledge of the historical Jesus."

said, Ben Witherington III, professor at Asbury Theological Seminary as referenced in a Christian Science Monitor article at

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Bird Flu hits first Trailer Park in Florida

I love this quote...

"Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits; they become character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny."

Saturday, May 13, 2006

A New Passion

I must say, moving to the 'burbs has yet another wonderful thing about it. On Saturdays during the spring and summer, there are a bajillion garage sales.

Today, the town of Demarest, which is the next town over from where I am, compiled a list of 18 homes who were having garage sales. And, to help get folks out and about, they maintained a massive small town picnic gathering of local music, food, and a few vendors. All throughout the day, people went from home to home, from garage to garage, finding their treasures among other people's trash.

I went to about 7 garage sales and decided, when my truck was full, that I'd better just stop already and go home. I purchased a small shaker-like chair, a leather side chair, and a fancy asian-designed and patterned side chair, all for my living room. I also purchased a bright multi-colored 6 foot quilt and a wooden quilt/blanket rack (the rack needs to be painted). I also bought two wicker baskets. I bought all this stuff for about 40 bucks.

The way I am figuring it, I only need the following furniture items left in my house:
two dressers (which I'll get from Ikea), two nightstands (my old ones will go in the spare bedroom for the spare bed), and a server table in the dining room. I am hoping the server table will have lots of storage drawers. I am thinking of getting an island for the kitchen, but that isn't necessary for my well-being just yet.

Speaking of the island in the kitchen, Roy said a few weeks back when I told him I wanted one, he said, "Ummm, in your old kitchen in Manhattan you had one 3-ft long counter top that you did all your cooking and dinner prep on; here in your new house, you have four - 2 and a half feet counter tops. Do you think you can make do?" He was, of course, being a smart allek. So yeah, he has a point. I don't need an island in the kitchen or a new Martha Stewart china cabinet for that matter either. But hey, wouldn't it be nice if I did get them? Maybe I could find something like them at a garage sale. ;)

Monday, May 08, 2006

Only in New York

A friend of mine took this picture one day while walking around Christopher Street in the West Village of NYC.

You just have to love a man, who, when thinking of a woman to dress up as, would choose Wonder Woman.

And doesn't she look fabulous?

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Church Shopping on King of the Hill

I just watched a hilarious segment of King of the Hill over on a friend's blog. His new blogging service affords him many opportunities to do some really cool things. The latest really cool thing is to put up video on it.

The segment has Hank and Peggy church shopping and it's hilarious!

Go here to watch the video. Be sure to turn your speakers on.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

If you think you'll be in New York...

Archbishop Emeritus Desmond M. Tutu to Receive Union Medal

Archbishop TutuJoin the Union Community for the presentation of the Union Medal to Archbishop Emeritus Desmond M. Tutu

Tuesday, May 16, 2006
6:00 p.m. in James Memorial Chapel, Union Theological Seminary

The Seminary is pleased to award its highest honor, the Union Medal, to Desmond M. Tutu, Archbishop Emeritus, Cape Town, South Africa. The award recognizes the spiritual leadership Archbishop Tutu provided in the dismantling of South Africa's apartheid system and his visionary efforts to foster societal healing and democratic ideals.

R.s.v.p. by May 12 to 212-280-1315
Seating is limited, and there is no reserved seating.

Fancy Digs and Pesky Rumors up for Sale

Cary Grant and Randolf Scott, those two early fabulous leading men, once lived together for 12 years, as Cary Grant was rising to fame. The house they lived in is now up for sale for nearly $4 million dollars. Later as Grant was about to get married, he kicked Scott out and moved his new wife into the cool digs.

Rumors in gay hollywood abound regarding the "relationship" between Grant and Scott and the Hollywood machine who felt it was time their leading man began living the role he played in the movies. You can read a bit about the discussion regarding Grant and Scott's friendship, relationship, or whatever you want to call it over on Wikipedia by going here. I found this article quite facinating. In my mind, I think he is my favorite actor from the golden age of the movies. He was classy, funny, charming, and a really great actor.

Brilliant Political Commentary

In an article entitled, "When would Jesus bolt?", reporter Amy Sullivan explains the battle some Republicans are waging to keep the Democrats from wooing evangelical votes. It also explains some of the tactics they are using, even lobbying to defeat pro-Christian resolutions, to ensure that America isn't confused about who "really" loves America. Here is a quote from the article:

Like an abusive boyfriend, Republicans keep moderate evangelicals in the coalition by alternating between painting their options as bleak and wooing them with sweet talk. You can't leave me—where are you going to go? To them [the Democrats]? They think you're stupid, they hate religion. Besides, you know I love you—I'm a compassionate conservative. The tactic works as long as evangelicals don't call the GOP's bluff and as long as Democrats are viewed as hostile to religion.

Read the entire story here. This is a long article but definitely a facinating read.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Native American Wisdom

I am uncertain if this really came from a Native American or not; it does, however, teach something wise.


One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people.

He said, "My son, the battle is between two
hungry wolves. Inside one is evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.

"The other is good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith."

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked the grandfather, "Which wolf wins?"

The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."

When Conversation Turns to Action

Okay, so you read my rant supporting immigrants and trying to find a working solution to the delimna. What I didn't write about was that right after I wrote that rant, I received an email from a church member forwarding a particularly offensive patriotic nationalism decrying illegal immigrants who are trying to abolish our American way of life. The email used an article from several years back that really had nothing to do with the immigration issue but, after including it in the email, offered his own comments justifying, "If you can't learn our language, then LEAVE!" kind of response. The church member then received this email and forwarded it on to all her friends (the tag line at the end of the email was, "If you love America, send this email to everyone you know."

So I wrote a response to the email explaining how offended I was with it's contents. Before sending it though, I hopped over to to check out the mass email, and then I wrote my response, and began an email conversation. After several back and forth emails defending a Christian response to illegal immigrants, opinions were indeed changed.

As a result of the email dialogue, the church member who sent the original email, just called to ask if the church could host an ESL (English as a Second Language) class for illegal immigrants or immigrants seeking to become US citizens. Is that amazing or what?! I tell you, church life has its rewards and they are extraordinary. I sure hope we can do something to help out those who are honestly seeking a way to continue contributing to the American experience. And, I am so proud of the church member who is listening to her Christian faith to be hospitable AND responsible to her American patriotism.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Uses for Hydrogen Peroxide

I found this article while snooping on The article pretty much said it's all true with the caveat that one should not drink, put in your nose, in your doch** bag (can I say douche in a blog entry?), or inject it into your body. I'll provide the link at the bottom of this post.

I would like to tell you of the benefits of that plain little O'l bottle of 3% peroxide you can get for under $1.00 at any drug store. My husband has been in the medical field for over 36 years, and most doctors don't tell you about peroxide, or they would lose thousands of dollars.

1. Take one capful (the little white cap that comes with the bottle) and hold in your mouth for 10 minutes daily, then spit it out. (I do it when I bathe or shower.) No more canker sores and your teeth will be whiter without expensive pastes. Use it instead of mouthwash.

2. Let your toothbrushes soak in a cup peroxide to keep them free of germs.

3. Clean your counters, table tops with peroxide to kill germs and leave a fresh smell. Simply put a little on your dishrag when you wipe, or spray it on the counters.

4. After rinsing off your wooden cutting board, pour peroxide on it to kill salmonella and other bacteria.

5. I had fungus on my feet for years - until I sprayed a 50/50 mixture of peroxide and water on them (especially the toes) every night and let dry.

6. Soak any infections or cuts in 3% peroxide for five to ten minutes several times a day. My husband has seen gangrene that would not heal with any medicine, but was healed by soaking in peroxide.

7. Put two capfuls into a douche to prevent yeast infections. I had chronic yeast infections until I tried this once or twice a week.

8. Fill a spray bottle with a 50/50 mixture of peroxide and water and keep it in every bathroom to disinfect without harming your septic system like bleach or most other disinfectants will.

9. Tilt your head back and spray into nostrils with your 50/50 mixture whenever you have a cold, plugged sinus. It will bubble and help to kill the bacteria. Hold for a few minutes then blow your nose into tissue.

10. If you have a terrible toothache and can not get to a dentist right away, put a capful of 3% peroxide into your mouth and hold it for ten minutes several times a day. The pain will lessen greatly.

11. And of course, if you like a natural look to your hair, spray the 50/50 solution on your wet hair after a shower and comb it through. You will not have the peroxide burnt blonde hair like the hair dye packages, but more natural highlights if your hair is a light brown, faddish, or dirty blonde. It also lightens gradually so it's not a drastic change.

12. Put half a bottle of peroxide in your bath to help rid boils, fungus, or other skin infections.

13. You can also add a cup of peroxide instead of bleach to a load of whites in your laundry to whiten them. If there is blood on clothing, pour directly on the soiled spot. Let it sit for a minute, then rub it and rinse with cold water. Repeat if necessary.

I could go on and on. It is a little brown bottle no home should be without! With prices of most necessities rising, I'm glad there's a way to save tons of money in such a simple, healthy manner.

Link to article.

Immigration Rant

I just received a day's worth of emails from a listserv packaged together so that I only have to get one email instead of a bajillion emails. In the email was a conversation about the immigration march that was held yesterday, Monday, in and around Union Square in New York City. The poster wrote about her justification for supporting immigration rights because "they are the only ones willing to do the crappy jobs no one else wants to do." And, this is the justification for support for immigrants and illegal aliens.

Now I realize this is a complicated issue and I don't have a solution that fits all the many faceted concerns surrounding immigration. I do know that I hope we can come up with a viable solution that honors the contributions of all the immigrants while at the same time providing a workable framework that offers qualifications for those who want to contribute to the American experience (which is all about taking in immigrants into the melting pot of our identity, heck, that is what this country has "always" been about, right?) and at the same time minimizes abuse.

What gripes me is that I have yet to hear one single argument for immigrants that deals with the ideal of human betterment and/or recognizing that we are all part of the same human family. Nor, have I heard an argument from Americans regarding the justice issue--meaning, we owe immigrants for their valuable efforts and labor. Perhaps the argument that says they do jobs we won't do, is akin to the justice issue but, from the tone of it, that argument sounds so condescending.

I'd love to hear a sermon about what happens to a country that despises its immigrants and refuses to be hospitable to those who need our help when they need it (read: Sodom and Gomorrah. God burnt down those cities when its residents weren't hospitable to strangers, cf: Ezekiel 16:48-49). I heard someone the other day say how angry they are that immigrants can receive hospital care in the event they have a life-threatening situation but that if this person ever had problems, since she has no medical insurance, she couldn't get the same treatment that an illegal immigrant could get. So, that is why she is against all illegal immigrants.

So I told her that hospitals have as a policy that they cannot turn away someone in a life-threatening situation regardless of whether they were an illegal immigrant or a US citizen without medical insurance. And, that if she has medical problems and cannot afford to go to a doctor that she could go to a free clinic (they are all over town). She looked at me rather stunned and said, "Well, yeah, but you can't get great service from a clinic." To which I responded, "Well, maybe, but they can help you if you have no other choice." In the end, she agreed that everyone deserves medical care in emergency situations--I am assuming she thinks that way because now she knows she can get it too.

What is WRONG with us?! I am amazed during any and all of these debates when I hear Christians say the meanest and nastiest of things. You want to wear a bracelet and ask, "What would Jesus do?" And then turn into this ugly uncompassionate human being when it comes to immigrants working their asses off while supporting our way of life? Okay, so you don't think that way... but many folks do and it's time we start raising our prophetic voices in support of a way of life that honors all who work and live on our shores.

And regardless of what flavor of faith you come from, this is an issue of human justice--not self-righteous American patriotism (read: nationalism and idolatry!).

The Man

Call me a country redneck but there are just some men that have raised up to the level of culural icon and there are few men who have done so, or who deserve as much recognition as the Man in Black himself.

Envying Self-righteousness

This has to be the most classic question I've read in ages:

"For me, at that moment, she was not a woman who lost a child; she was a self-righteous born-again Christian who didn't have the time of day for a crackhead and I was seeing through her charade of compassion. It was like what Buddhists get all the time: If you're so spiritual, why are you such an asshole?"

This is from an article over at Killing the Buddha. It is about a Buddhist woman who interviews and finds herself curious about some Christians, most of the time anyway. Her questions reflect what I hear from many liberal Christians who envy the confidence in more strict and fundamentalist Christians. While the liberals I know are interested (and sometimes facinated) by such beliefs, most will contend that giving up their compassionate outlook on the unfortunate or disenfranchized isn't worth the trade off. Still, this article is great.

Click here to read more.