I wrote this two weeks ago when I came home to find that all hell had broken loose in my family, wanting to find a way to publish it, to get people to THINK about how they treat each other and the lessons they inadvertently teach others, and decided that our situation is dire enough here that I just really need people to think NOW and can't wait for an editor to decide this works for them. I posted this to my FB yesterday and it went "viral" among my friends and their friends. I don't think that's really the definition of the term, but it's nice that people want to share this. :)

And I want you to share this through links. Please link people here to my blog instead of reposting this elsewhere, if you do. I feel that having a concentrated group of comments for kids like my son to read through and know that people CARE will do wonders for them. (And if you know me in RL, please - I beg of you - do not share anything personal like where I actually live or my child's name. We have had people stalking our house to the point where my husband called the police.)

Thank you. It's a little long, but I mean every word of it. (And if you've ever called someone the names I've referred to in this article, or hurt someone, I want you to look at my icon. That's my son. That precious little thing has had all of this ugliness thrown at him.)

Warning: Frank talk of homophobia, suicide attempts, and bullying.

Tolerance doesn't mean what you think it means. )
I follow a lot of design blogs. That's primarily what I follow on Tumblr and have on my Reader. (I don't do much fannish stuff on Tumblr, because it makes my head explode from all the spoilers and wank.) But back to gardening. A lot of architects think they know how to be landscape designers. A lot of landscape designers think they know about plants.

They don't. (typically) They know how to mix textures (types of leaf structures) and color to look like a Monet, but so what? In a month, your landscape will be dead. Or you'll have to have extensive work done on a regular basis by a mow and blow (that's what I call those cheesy lawn services that also don't know anything about plants except to cut things and blow them into bags.)

I have seen no less than four times THIS MORNING different design blogs show how wonderfully stark bamboo looks in someone's modernist side yard. Yep, it does. For about three weeks. Then that side yard will become a bamboo forest. Want to know why so many things are made from bamboo? Can you guess? Because it grows like a frickin' weed and you can't get rid of it. Yay for whoever figured out all of the uses for bamboo! (And oh, do I love my bamboo bed sheets. And stir fried bamboo. And my bamboo-fiber sweater. And my bamboo CUTTING BOARDS. Hey, I wonder if that's a sturdy grass... (bamboo is a grass! [rainbow: the more you know!])

some common sense info so you can stop buying things that die. )

It makes me sad when I see things die and frustrated wannabe gardeners throwing in the towel after wasting a LOT of money. So here you go.
If I can think of anything else, I'll add it here. some more info for you. )

This is a sticky post on my livejournal, so feel free to comment with any questions. I'll do my best to answer you in a timely manner, and then this can be a catch-all for anyone strolling by. :)
I want to tell y'all about my old classmate Ray. Ray was our star athlete in football, basketball, and track. He led all three teams to state championships. He was a good guy, smart, kind, a friend to everyone. He was recruited for the US Army after high school. He immediately left after basic to the Gulf War. The first one. He served his country and decided that he was good at being a military man. He married a beautiful woman and they started a family, they traveled back and forth from the US to Germany to the Middle East for the next 15 years. He was made a captain and his men loved him.

Ray specialized in the worst job there is in modern warfare: he was the leader of an Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) team . If you've seen The Hurt Locker, that's what he did. He has been blown up three times. This last time he didn't walk away. Now, he wasn't killed, he just couldn't walk away from it. He has literally had every single bone in his body - from his skull to his toes - broken. He has pins in his limbs and pins holding his ribs in place. He is confined to a wheelchair most of the time because it's incredibly painful and difficult for him to walk. (He still tries because he's that guy. He's impressive, to say the least.) He was forced into retirement when his rehabilitation wasn't going anywhere. He didn't want to leave his men. He was given a mission, and he hadn't accomplished it yet.

His mission was to clear the way for elite troops to find and kill Osama Bin Laden. The first thing I did this morning was thank him for making it possible, because even though he's been stateside for a year, he's a part of this. And make no mistake: I think of it as a victory. A dangerous man that killed Ray's men (and 5,885 of our soldiers, not to mention the 276 British troops, 153 Canadians, etc.) was stopped from hurting anymore people. This will not end al-Quaeda but this will go a long way into defusing their power.

I am not dancing in the streets because a life was ended. I'm bursting with pride for those amazing 22 men of the SEALs that made a precise strike and took out the key element to this stupid war. I do not feel bad for one ounce of emotion I'm carrying. I know we all want to be thoughtful, non-violent people, but a rabid dog was put down and we're a little safer for it. I will not apologize for smiling and pumping my fist in the air at the news.

Every person that puts their life on the line for their country has made an amazing sacrifice - one that the vast majority of us will never do. I, for one, am grateful for that and will not split hairs to decide the level of satisfaction/thoughtfulness that should be considered appropriate today. Feel what you feel. And thank a serviceman/woman for knowing they could have ended up like Ray (or dead) for trying to keep people safe from madmen.
There's a book that has been on my radar to read since I divorced my first husband and left Utah, back in late '97. The book only came out 5 years ago, but her story? Well, everyone that lived in Utah "knew" her story and knew a book was coming. But good hell, the conditioning was deep and I thought I already knew the answers, which was the point of her book. I just read it last night. Leaving The Saints, by Martha Nibley Beck. Heads up about the book: she claims sexual abuse and talks to other abuse survivors in detail, so if that's upsetting to you, there's your fair warning. I'll refer to her claims in the end of the post, but there won't be any deep discussion about abuse, mm'kay?

Unless you've grown up in Jonestown, you can't know how all-consuming that life is. It's not like any other organized religion out there. Loooong-winded discussion under the cut. )

While I applaud Martha's coming forward about something that had to be excruciating to deal with, I did find some aspects of her book to be... forced for writerly tension. It doesn't take away much from the story, but it does leave room for detractors to say, "See? She said their house was blue, and it was green! Ergo, we cannot believe any of her lies!" She presents conversations with fellow Mormons as if she doesn't know some of the arcane beliefs. Her father was the leading "expert" on those beliefs, AND she was a professor at BYU AND from one of the older LDS families. That bugged me. If anything, it's making me go back over my own manuscript and make sure I'm being completely truthful, and when I'm being purposely obtuse for comedic effect, it's obvious. Her book is the first of all of the ex-Mormon books I've read that doesn't sound like Testimony meeting, however. There are a handful of you that know what I mean by that. :) She still does, but her writing doesn't, if that makes sense. (By that I mean her "overwhelming love" for her father, the way she still bows to him as her patriarch even though he was an abuser and poor excuse for a father to her and her 7 siblings. That's pure Mormon culture.)

Guys, I wish I could just let it all go and forget that this was ever a part of my life. But it made me who I am, and it's not all bad. My crochet and canning skills and my apocalypse pantry are proof of that. :)
Just something I needed to read today, and I bet some of you out there need the chuck on the shoulder, too. And if you're not following Janet Reid's fabulous blog about her life as an agent, how to get published, the life of a writer, well, let this serve as a head's up to add it to your blog roll.

And I'm going to take the NaNo plunge for the third time. Let's see if it'll produce anything of note this year. I haven't been much of a writer for a few months, and I think I need to just remind myself of what I love doing. And hate doing. But love. Heh.
I've talked extensively about organics in the past, and I'm going to wear you out with the topic again, those who stick with me. My background: biology background (microbiology, specifically) and a Master Gardener, which required extensive class and lab work surrounded proper gardening methods, IPM, understanding of the chemistry of botany, etc. etc. I'm not THE expert on all things growing/living, but I'm no chump with an idea I want to blab across the internet, either. (Well, I could be that last one, depending on your perception. Har.)

Repeat after me: Organic foods are NOT more nutritious than commercially grown food. They're something else. )

In conclusion, buy local, grow your own, save some money, and don't buy produce from China, because they use human waste in their "organic" farming practices, and it's PERFECTLY LEGAL. Yuck. Be concerned about huge growers like Monsanto and ConAgra who deplete the soil, grow nutrition less food in favor of larger crops (they're engineering food in a manner that doesn't maintain nutrition - and that is a type of engineering that's possible, too!) Be concerned about the environmental impact of pesticides, if that's your bag, but more importantly: don't buy food that has to be shipped from long distances. There's the REAL problem that could easily be solved, imo.

And Top Chef is back on tonight! And Project Runway! The two shows I love! WOOT. (Check how many times the chefs talk about locally available food - that's the new way to be eco-groovy. Food grown close, food in season.) I LOVE FOOD.

I've been reading some fantastic books lately, too. I finally got a copy of Let The Right One In and so far it's fantastic. The mood, the eeriness, even stronger than the movie, which I loved. I also picked up Born To Run: A Hidden Tribe, Super athletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen" based on The Daily Show's interview the other day and I'm sucking that down like Sumatra at 6am. Holy crow, is that a fabulously written and interesting book. I can't recommend that enough.

Lastly, from TEXTSFROMLASTNIGHT.com: (310): Fact: Godrick looks like David Archuleta Ahahahahaha! Yes, yes he does.
Ahahaha. Seriously though, I'm super happy that today is the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin, being a lover and student of the life sciences my whole life. He is the creator of modern biology and the various schools of thought that have sprung forth. Note: if you believe the earth was literally created in 6000 years and that man was made from a fistful of clay in God's hands, then we don't really have much to say to each other. You won't enjoy this post, in other words. :)



On The Origin Of The Species - You're All A Bunch Damn Dirty Apes )

I heard some half-wit on a talk radio program say that evolution is clearly not true because there aren't any half-man/half-ape walking around with a briefcase. What's awesome is that with that remark, he completely supported evolutionary theory. [do you catch how? *g*] And he showed that he has the kind of characteristics that should be knocked off our DNA.

In conclusion, help someone you know evolve today. Or you know, talk them into taking a hit for the team. Hahahaha. How fitting that I got this comment to the Twilight/Sparkle posts. "Also, almost none of these pictures are accurate." It's like she means this picture or this picture isn't 100% accurate, what??! Say it ain't so!! :D

[ETA to shut up some pedants] 1. The Origin of the Species was published in 1859. Gregor Mendel and his peas, heaven forbid I type a random stream of conscious post in anything but an academic-level manner, didn't finish COLLECTING DATA until 1863, and he didn't publish his findings until 1865. And he slipped into obscurity due to his status in the Catholic Church (and the Catholic Church's not wanting his research known) until almost 2 decades after his death, meaning 1900. So which came first? Darwin. Also? This was a squee post on a personal journal, not Scientific America, so PLEASE. Sit a few plays out, would ya? Can you tell that type of online behavior irritates the shit out of me?
I'm exhausted, my face hurts, and I feel light and happy about things for the first time in a long while. I've already seen ugly comments from the McCain supporters, things like they've woken up to a bad dream, that this is all about race, and other ridiculous, hurtful, backwards statements. This is why that party lost: you're not getting it.

It's not because Obama is black that he won, it's because people of ALL races and backgrounds and ages and religion finally felt that THEIR voice was heard. It was not a black voice, it was a voice of NEW IDEAS. Most importantly, and this is really the biggest point, it was a POSITIVE and KIND voice. It's a voice that has clearly listened to both sides. A voice that commands quiet and thoughtful discourse. A voice that triggers a burning in your chest that makes you feel that this time, finally, something GOOD will happen for the rest of us schlubs, not just the people that have been paying for their policies to get passed.

Look. I live in the reddest county in Texas. I'm surrounded by people that will be taxed more by Obama's plan. And not to put too fine a point on it, eventually my husband and I will be hurt by it, too. But guess what? I want better schools. I don't want talk about how we need it, I want someone that LOVES education and educators to make it a priority. Obama and his wife know that they benefited wholly from their education (and their loving families.) They weren't legacies shuttled from school to school because the library at the university has their grandfather's name on it.

And there it is, right there: they aren't legacies. Barack Obama made it where he is right now because of hard work, because of his kind and thoughtful nature, and because of his intelligence and love for the American Dream.

The American Dream won last night, not a black man. WE won. And the beauty of him, and why those of us that love him do, is because he knows that. This isn't a strategic play on a chess board, this is a man that when you talk to him, he stops and listens, looking you in the eye. He's not thinking of how to spin what he's got planned to say, he's actually listening to you. Hell, he turned my husband from a card carrying RNC member to a stumper for his campaign based on four political conversations they had on flights from DC to Chicago.

I admired John McCain last night with his lovely and heartbreaking concession speech. No one can doubt that he loves his country. Hell, I even got choked up for Palin, a woman that I do not admire, but I do not hate, either. They love their country, and they thought they were the ones to help us, but we disagreed. And how shameful that the audience there marred McCain's beautiful speech with ugly booing and jeering; he was clearly offended by it. Please. Let us reach across party lines because here's the thing: it doesn't matter any more. Blue, red, liberal, conservative, right now we need each other. We need to hear what each other has to say in a civil manner. The old days of politics are going out the door. It's time for adults to talk rationally with one another, to calmly listen, and if needed, to say, "You were right, I was wrong."

Guys, it is time for this country to look at each other and be proud that no matter what the other believes, we are AMERICANS. We are IDEALISTS. That is what this beautiful place was founded on, and we've lost sight of it. Don't tell me we can't do it. I'll just smile, put my arm around you, and turn up the volume of the hundreds of thousands of first time voters (and not because they're 18, either) chanting:

YES WE CAN!

I am so proud to be an American. I always have been a nationalist, but now I can really hold my head high. A young, intelligent, thoughtful man is now our president. We're moving in a good direction. I hope you all come with us.
I did 15 training miles on Saturday and 18 miles yesterday. Today is an off day for walking (only strength training to build up my knees) and then I'm going for an hour and a half long massage. Ooooooh, bliss. Later, I'll hit the county courthouse for early voting. \o/ Seriously: if there's any way you can vote early, do. It's going to be a MADHOUSE on election day. Just the primaries were insane here, and that was only one party voting!

But back to your boobs and how much I care about them. In a totally non-creepy way, of course. :) You did know that you should check your bewbs once a month, right? And not while on your period, but a week after? Just, while you're in the shower soaping up, give them a few swirls and squeezes. And you did know that if found early 98% of you will survive? The caveat, of course, is that you are checking. [ETA]: in case it's not clear: EARLY DETECTION means a 98% survival rate. I'm not in any way suggesting that if you routinely handle your breasts you'll live, and if you don't, you'll die. I would hope that was clear.

Are you like me and don't put yourself first when it comes to health care? Everyone else comes first, right? Kids, your partner, animals... But who is going to take care of them if you're not there to do it? Right. Check your boobs, talk to a doctor if you find something weird. Because if you leave it to chance, or dismiss anything odd, your chances of living - living - drop dramatically.

Breast cancer is the second leading cause of DEATH in US women. (Lung cancer is first. STOP SMOKING.) It's the most common cancer for women, however. Did you know that insurance will pay for mammograms if you're 35 and older? And if you don't have health insurance, call your county's health department. Most of them in the US provide free mammograms. Did you know that? FREE. They'll usually give you a voucher that you take to a hospital near you, so you can get properly examined. So really, there's no excuse, is there? Also, the American Cancer Society has lists of providers for low income of low-coverage women. Call 1-800-ACS-2345 for a location in the US nearest you. An act was passed in the US that enables Medicare/Medicaid to help front the cost of breast cancer screening. The CDC chips in, as well. Call 1-800-CDC INFO or go online for local information.

Don't think your age protects you, or that no one in your family having breast cancer leaves you exempt. We're still not sure what causes breast cancer, definitively. Genetics, environment, both are factors. And Africa-Americans... you are - unfortunately - most likely to die from breast cancer that is NOT DETECTED EARLY. Are you seeing a trend? Grab yer bewbs, in other words, and check them out.

Guys, at my last 3-Day I met a girl that had to drop out of her Freshman year in college because she had breast cancer and needed chemo. 19 years old. No one in her family had ever had any form of cancer. My beloved s-mom's BFF died of breast cancer two years ago, and I brought her name with me to the 3-Day in 2006. She kept ignoring the lumps in her breasts. It's just so easy to find out, y'all, and I really REALLY want everyone to be healthy, no matter how tangentially we know each other.

That's why I walk over 70 miles every week to strengthen my body so that in one weekend, in under 18 hours, actually, I can walk through my city as a testament to women and men everywhere that I CARE. That I know how important it is for we women (and you guys out there, too!) to pull together and lift each other up, to remind each other to take care of ourselves. SO GO IN THE BATHROOM AND CHECK YOUR BOOBS FOR ME, HUH? (Hey, some of you, I'll do it for ya. *G*)

The Susan G. Komen 3-Day helps pay the medical costs of low-insurance/no-insurance women needing treatment. It donates a portion for research, but mostly the 3-Day is IMMEDIATE CARE. Every single penny goes to someone in need, nothing to administrative costs, NOTHING. If you can spare any amount of money, please consider making a donation to my team. Either one of us, it doesn't matter - the money ends up in the right hands. To those of you that have generously donated, I can't thank you enough. You need to know that you have quite possibly saved a woman's life. You've given her kids and/or loved ones more time with her. Thank you. I'd kiss you square on the mouth, if I could.

Please feel free to link to this post and share it with anyone that could benefit from the information and phone numbers given. <3
Because who wants to go off half-cocked? So yesterday, it came to light in the US that a Russian LJ blogger posted a live execution video on his LJ a few days ago. NPR reported this yesterday afternoon, even though it happened a few days ago. Last night, I saw many people's posts of outrage: How could LJ let that be shown, but the Snarry pic was removed? How can you stay on this service? And so on and so on.

Here's the important words:" LJ LET THAT BE SHOWN." Well... yes. And no. Do you honestly think that LJ has a filtering program reading journals and all their posts - ALL 13 million journals? *cough* Why would they add a tattle-tell button on LJs, then? Someone got pissed off here in the US/Europe (probably the US) about the Snarry pic (MsScribe?) and reported it, and several other posts/images. The Russian blog system, while under the umbrella of LJ isn't really RUN by LJ. It's run by SUP. SUP is extremely controversial in Russia for a multiplicity of reasons: 1) the internet is heavily monitored by the state in Russia as are MOST news sources like TV, radio, papers, and SUP isn't a part of the state controlled internet, 2) LJ pretty much = internet in Russia, which is under US laws, right? and 3) SUP is headed by Anton Nosik, a Jew and Israeli. And a large portion of Russians don't like Jews. Or Israelis. There has been a tremendous upsurge of Neo-Nazism in the former USSR. The Kremlin is anti-freedom of speech. The Russian LJers were TERRIFIED (and rightly so) that LJ would be selling their personal info to the Kremlin/KGB. LJ assured them that would never happen. (They have stuck to that promise. Because they're not really doing ANYTHING with the Russian LJs)

Anton Nosik (his livejournal for those that speak Russian is [livejournal.com profile] dolboeb which actually translates into dick head!) is anti-Kremlin, anti-censorship. Again, he's also a very controversial guy - he built up underground newspapers advocating freedom of speech, access to the internet, etc, from scratch. He's very Russian. He's not some MIT nerd that created something "cool." He's not a highly educated, smooth operator. As evidenced by his crappy statement to the press about the video: "People post what they feel must be posted, and write what they feel must be written. There is a list of things that LiveJournal users agree not to do, but posting pictures of an execution is not on the list. There is a clause forbidding comments that incite ethnic hatred, but whether it applies to this particular video is an open question."

Clearly a video that shows a live execution-style murder, a live HATE CRIME murder should be understood that it's WRONG. Disgusting. Unacceptable. I think we can all agree to that. Please also know that the world's journalists are pushing for all videos/information to be allowed to be posted as a way to show what is happening in the world (multiple orgs on line - that is just one example.) Can we sit in our safe houses and say one is fine and the other is not? Sure we can. And we can crank the AC up and go to the supermarket and etc. etc. But how many of you knew that Neo-Nazism is on the upsurge in Russia? How many of you knew that 7 of these types of killings A DAY are happening in Russia? You (and I) do now. Just like how we found out about the Taliban's public executions - by leaked videos online that hit the news media.

LJ has handed the reins of the internet over to SUP - they announced to Russian users back in October that this would happen. Russian bloggers were very upset by it; they want the services/protection of LJ. But... it was a done deal. SUP has its own support and abuse team. You can imagine how efficient they are.

My stance is this (and I will NEVER tell anyone through guilt or other bullying how they should spend their fucking blogging time or dollars. You're a grown up. Do what you want.) execution videos are bad, mm'kay? I do not support hate crimes, mm'kay? If I stick around on LJ, that does not mean the terrorists win. I am not going to call the other blogging sites Safe Zones. *cough* The video was ORIGINALLY hosted by a service like YouTube and embedded in the dude's LJ. Where's the outcry that YouTube/etc. is implicit with hate crimes and murder? LJ didn't (and maybe STILL doesn't) KNOW about the video. Hell, most of YOU didn't know about it. And we bloggers know events faster than the admins at LJ, you can bet your sweet patootie on that one. Also, 6A just launched their largest/most important (to them) software the day the video came out, MoveableType 4. They're probably all on red alert for that rollout/potential bugs/etc. You know: paying attention to where the money is coming in, because that's how they think.

LJ is trying in their corporate way to allow fandom some level of what we've been doing. Just because ponderosa's pics were pulled, her journal banned doesn't mean that LJ hates teh ghey and LOVES the hate and murder. That is beyond a jump to conclusions, that is a freaking Evil Knievel leap across the Grand Canyon, imo. Because three years ago, when that blogger from Alaska allegedly had her mother killed and took part in some of it - then came home and blogged about having killed her, that didn't make LJ complicit with murder THEN either. In fact, her blog was used in court as evidence. She was acquitted, actually.

Here are some links for reading so you can draw your own conclusions (just make sure your conclusions are of age, ahaha.)
There will be NO angry yelling/finger pointing allowed in this post. If you want to have a calm, rational discussion about any of this, yes please! (And much love to [livejournal.com profile] romanyg for originally bringing this to light.)
crossposted to IJ, GJ

[ETA: Sat. night]

[ETA Sun. AM]:
First off, I owed [livejournal.com profile] dooki and [livejournal.com profile] crazydiamondsue calls last night, and I just dropped the ball. Too much to do - and I'm heading to the airport for Tree City in about three hours, so... Home on Sunday, jiggity jig. Plane reading material: The Liar, Stephen Fry (almost done - loved it) and Confederacy of Dunces. also taking Book 6 of the Outlander series. And a journal to write! Okay, the plane ride isn't that long, but I believe in being prepared!

Seriously: hit me with a link to your fics, etc. here so I can CATCH UP. I'm not even going to bother going back through a week and a half of my flist - I do know that [livejournal.com profile] tkp has some fic I want to read, the [livejournal.com profile] scranton_times has TONS of good-looking Office fic I want to read... Hit me up!

And now, a personal little note for my own posterity... Ann Richards died last night. )
I just realized this morning who Emily's kindergarten teacher looks like: Kristen Chenoweth. She's beensy, too. (Ru! Hee! It's your Broadway crush!)

So, I was going to whip out this RPS PWP, right? Right. Friday. It's turning into a pornish- YA novel, for god's sake. Which... okay, I suppose. I have such a love of "coming of age" young adult sex romps that take place in boarding schools. SO. MUCH. LOVE. (There was a cheesy For Girls series I read in junior high about a spoiled brat horsey girl who was the cause of someone's death/injury, and she covered up her Glorious Sooty Eyelashes and wore Frumpy Clothes so she could volunteer as a candy striper, thereby redeeming herself. Also, there was coal strip-mining, and that's how she got rich. Anyone? What the hell were those called?)

I am very excited about the new findings coming out on stem cell research, although I feel it's ridiculous we have to have this debate AT ALL. Cut for those who HATE KNOWLEDGE. )

You know what's going to make me feel better? Some YA porn. I mean... YA stories. :)
I'm sorry to bring something like this to your attention, and I'll just state that if you don't have the energy to get up at arms over homosexual "Bashing," move along. I received an email from a company whose products I have used in the past, a company who (as a Master Gardener) I have recommended to others. I am now emphatically taking that recommendation back. This is the email I received in my mail box today. Jesus H.

Holy Hatred and Random, Bat-Man! )

And this is the reply I've sent back to the President, Troy Hake.
I cut you with my text! )

So. Here's where YOU come in. THIS IS THE CONTACT PAGE for the company, Outsidepride.com. Please take the time to email them and let them know how bigoted they are. I hope their mail servers gets so many hits, it bogs down. PLEASE DO NOT USE INFLAMMATORY LANGUAGE. Do not give them fuel to say "I told you so." Be polite. Be firm. And pass this on to as many people as you'd like. Link, cut and paste, repost, whatever you feel necessary.

Here is their mailing address )

I'd like to remind everyone that they sell SOIL and GLOVES. What that has to do with homosexuals on TV is beyond me. Ridiculous.

[ETA] [livejournal.com profile] psychoadept received a reply! Which still doesn't negate the hate.

And be sure to email CBS to tell them something positive about their diversity and consideration for all people in their programming!

[ETA 2]: guys, my hands are about to fall off. I appreciate the overwhelming response to this, and would like to mention that [livejournal.com profile] liz_marcs has some terrific blog links discussing this very thing. I won't be able to reply to everyone, but please know that your adding your voice is greatly appreciated!
ABANDON ALL HOPE, YE WHO ENTER HERE. (Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate)

It should be no surprise to those who have been on my flist for a while that I love talking religion. For the record, I am not a believer in a higher power. At all. I also do not denigrate those that find comfort and peace in their belief of a higher power, so please know that you can be candid with your thoughts on religion with no fear of retaliation, snickering, or attempts to convert from my end. And I'll hope for the same. (OMG, no Watchtowers of BoMs, please!)

I'll state first what (imo) are Joss' thoughts on religion, and try and support that with moments/themes from the show. It's my opinion (and was glad to hear someone else say this at WC) that God and religion failed Joss Whedon in his life, and he has a rather sour outlook on them both, but maybe a part of him wants to believe. I also think that he's sensitive enough (and intelligent enough) to see the value in not preaching atheism (i think he approaches from an agnostic viewpoint) to the viewer, and while he tends to revere the dark more than the light, he still lets the viewer make the final decision as to how they see the god of their choice, or the lack thereof.

Gosh, I love a story with scope. ) cross linked to [livejournal.com profile] churchofjoss
This isn't a comprehensive thing, so I'm not going to spam the WC comm, because I have spamming issues. :) Notes, links, etc. under the cut!

I know that online Porn is King; I'm trying to make Comedy its Queen )

Of a non-fannish/WC nature, I'm going to keep all talk of books and music on my VOX account - for purely selfish reasons and because I have organizational issues. *cough* My WC roommates were lovely for putting up with me cleaning all the time. I got a new Paste magazine, my sister sent me some music, and I'm reading a few REALLY good books, and I like the way VOX is set up for collecting thoughts on that stuff. (If anyone on VOX wants to add me to your neighborhood, yay! I've not been aggressive about adding people, as I don't want to presume you want me in BOTH spots.) Okay. Time to make creme fraiche.
I hate to break it to you, those of you who fervently believe in "being organic," but you're not. Those products you spend almost twice as much on, to bring "better nutrition" or "to save the environment" aren't doing anything of the sort. (mostly) Well, true, there are a handful of farmers and livestock growers that really are trying to "go back to the way things were" - a nebulous idea at best - but for the most part, you're just shelling out more money for a different product, and may actually be putting more dangerous "chemicals" in your body, such as those found in human waste. Yippie!

What on earth does 'Organic' even mean? )

Thanks to the Dallas Morning News for their excellent article this morning on Organic Farming, and for their resources. And for pushing me to write this. If only for myself...
#1: Happy Birthday to a fantastic girl who is smart, clever, loves the open highways (and Texas roads, too) as much as me, and who my kids STILL talk about because she gave them little gifts they loved (a sand dollar and a superman magnet - which gets to hold school work with high marks) [livejournal.com profile] smashsc (And I know you've changed, but my mind is racing.)

#2: Happy Birthday to [livejournal.com profile] ladycat777, who has a smile that brightens the room, that is incredibly smart and thinky and loving and tender, and a great friend to have. Andrea blows me away with who she is, and I'm so glad to have met her and call her friend.

#3: I'm leaving on a jet plane, but I do know when I'll be back, which is midnight Sunday. Leaving in the AM for a weekend in NYC which is SO NEEDED. [livejournal.com profile] cherusha and I plan on painting the town red, or at least a hue in the red-family, and good times will be had! I need a break so very very much. [livejournal.com profile] entrenous88 has given me many options for travel from LaGuardia to Times Square, and I feel brave and capable. (And cabs are PRICEY now. That's eating into my drinking/food budget!) So obviously, radio silence from this space for a few days.

#4: Thoughts on published books, categorizing genres, etc. Isn't this sexism? )

Okay, gonna step out and get things done, for my to do list is looooooong. And hoping someone has more cohesive thoughts on the lit writer topic, because it is something I find I think about a lot, lately. Hmmmmm.
HEROES.

That's what this post is about. Those brave men and women that stand for their beliefs, even in the face of danger and hormones. Those that have scruples. That tuck in their shirts. That comb their... side locks with a black comb that is then carefully rinsed and stored in its proper place - WATCH YOUR STEP, MISTER! The unsung heroes.

THIS is their song. *cue violins*

My Principal Snyder )
My husband actually told me to blog about this. I think he's tired of me "tsk tsking" on the back porch at our Church of the Right Angle Worship neighbors on a daily basis. Quick disclaimer for skimmers: I am a Master Gardener for the state of Texas, part of my function is to educate the public on responsible land stewardship. So... that was your clue to keep skimming. WAIT! It's IMPORTANT!

WE ARE RUNNING OUT OF CLEAN WATER. STOP WASTING IT. )
Good morning! Did everyone have a good weekend? My BFF is still here, we leave at lunch to go to the airport....

Oh, come on. Half of you are reading this to find out what the hell happened over the weekend. I'm still trying to, as well. I LOVE popping in to my email and finding out that now there are references to my post being Nazi-like?. Or maybe I'm the nazi. Or [livejournal.com profile] dovil is the nazi, I'm not sure. (that's the whole thread - three comments down.) Because that is a PERFECTLY REASONABLE STATEMENT when discussing writing as a hobby. On the internet. About fictional characters. REASONABLE. It's also great to find that someone can't have an honest discourse - even if it may be rough - so they get their boyfriend to call me a bitch. And an asshole. And miss the point of the post entirely. And also contradict themselves. (I'll reply to him later - I still have company.)

Look. There were people who disagreed here, sure. But they handled themselves wonderfully. Specifically? Oh, I'll toss out [livejournal.com profile] swmbo and [livejournal.com profile] sueworld2000. They disagreed, but laughed and threw their hands up in mock surrender. There was no achieving of Godwin's Law in the thread.

Lemme sum up, and if this doesn't float your boat, WHY ARE YOU HERE? Seriously. Click off that check mark on Friends List and walk away. I won't mind. REALLY. Honest and for true. Now, I feel (cough, as do many people) that no matter WHAT you write, you should write your BEST. I don't care if you are writing that Han Solo wears tutus and time-warps to LotRiPS land. HAVE AT IT. You put it out for public consumption? They'll consume. Some may spit it out. Some may lap that up. But. Those that spit it out? They aren't mean. Now, since I've already been called a bitch, I'll just go all the way here. I am the person that may spit it out, then post a notice - "this food stinks. People are spitting up. And check out how they put in licorice in this margarita! The hell?" Clearly I am Hitler. Okay, I'm only Mussolini, but that doesn't pack as much of a punch. WOW. Hitler. Nazis. It only took 376 comments to get there.

If you feel I'm a horrible person, WHY do you insist on coming over here? So, heads up folks. I'm horrible. I kick puppies, shoot old ladies, and make fun of things like "she egressed all over his audience." And "He was traveling to the district of vagina." And I'm not going to stop. I suspect a bunch of you may not, either. In a way... it's a symbiotic relationship. *waits for the leech/parasite insults to be flung at me*

Now gimmie your lunch money.

(For those of you who are being smug about how I'm not responding to "everyone?" I have a life. I was entertaining a human this weekend that wasn't made of Ones and Twos. I'll get to everyone that's posted up to this time stamp. And then y'all have at it. Because I have a LIFE. Aaaaaaaaaand I don't see myself changing my opinon. Need... coffee...)

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