Wednesday, March 28, 2007
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
Monday, March 26, 2007
Friday, March 23, 2007
"We proclaim the Gospel of what God has done and is doing in Christ, of theLeaders for our military spoke out recently as well...while the American people spoke their minds and hearts in this poll. No doubt, the dumbest and most ridiculous policy our country has ever initiated. In 40-50 years people will shake their heads in disbelief at our mind numbing stupidity, fear and ignorance right now.
dignity of every human being, and of justice, compassion, and peace. We proclaim
the Gospel that in Christ there is no Jew or Greek, no male or female, no slave
or free. We proclaim the Gospel that in Christ all God's children, including
women, are full and equal participants in the life of Christ's Church. We
proclaim the Gospel that in Christ all God's children, including gay and lesbian
persons, are full and equal participants in the life of Christ's Church. We
proclaim the Gospel that stands against any violence, including violence done to
women and children as well as those who are persecuted because of their
differences, often in the name of God. The Dar es Salaam Communiqué is
distressingly silent on this subject. And, contrary to the way the Anglican
Communion Network and the American Anglican Council have represented us, we
proclaim a Gospel that welcomes diversity of thought and encourages free and
open theological debate as a way of seeking God's truth. If that means that
others reject us and communion with us, as some have already done, we must with
great regret and sorrow accept their decision."
Some people get it...some people don't.
Where do you fit in?
Wednesday, March 21, 2007
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
Today (March 20th), Spring officially begins!
A time of rebirth and change. I experienced both while home in Georgia this past weekend.
Amazed, and emotional, watching my little niece blossom into something even more beautiful than she already was.
Following a dream...purchasing an old house with plans for restoration. No doubt about it...Spring is my favorite time of year!
Friday, March 16, 2007
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
- Chasing, or seeing, a tornado. (check)
- Experiencing the full power of a hurricane (check)
- The rush you feel from an approaching severe thunderstorm. Winds picking up, trees bending over, feeling the sudden blast of cold air from the outflow boundary, explosive thunder and lightning, as the storm prepares to let loose its fury. (check)
I have been fortunate enough (or unfortunate - depending on your take of things) to experience all of the above. But, on March 13, 1993 I experienced a truly once-in-a-lifetime event.
Just by chance, two months prior to this weekend, I had purchased an airline ticket to go home to Georgia to spend time with my parents. Little did I know, the weekend would turn out to be anything but normal.
It would have been one thing to experience this storm in Washington, D.C., but to be in Georgia during the first and only official "blizzard warning" ever issued for the state, was quite memorable.
It began with a forecast of snow...not too unusual for the northern half of the state, as it isn't uncommon to have one or two little snow or ice "storms" during the course of the winter. However as the days leading up to March 13th grew closer, the forecast began to change dramatically. What was supposed to have been just a moderate snow event, grew into the monster known as "The Storm of the Century".
The strongest storm to hit the east in the century, it produced at least 15 tornadoes that hit Florida killing 44. On the west side of the storm, heavy snowfall fell over Alabama. Birmingham set a 24 hour snow fall record picking up 13 inches of snow, and 20 inches fell in a 24 hour period in Chattanooga. Places as far south as Northern Florida, even saw measurable snowfall on this date 14 years ago.
I remember looking out the window early in the morning, and being disappointed. All I was seeing was rain. But by late morning, the rain had changed to snow. Snowfall amounts weren't that impressive...maybe 4 inches, but what was so incredible was the wind! I can remember going outside with my Dad and watching the tall pine trees in our back yard leaning, and straining, as they bent over in the hurricane force sustained winds. Some of them didn't make it. We stood there watching as one after another, they popped and crashed to the ground.
With the center of the low passing directly over us, the barometric pressure fell like a rock. Just to our South, the storm was causing low pressure records... similar to a category 3 hurricane. A reading of 28.73 inches was reported in Augusta. Blizzard conditions shut down every major airport from Atlanta to Boston something that has never happened.
With howling winds, and snow flying, we stayed inside for most of the day. Things were fine...until the power went out. By now it was around 7 p.m. and the snow was winding down. The winds were still howling, there were several inches of snow on the ground, huge pine trees lay all across the back yard, and the temperature outside was a cozy 18 degrees...just about what if felt like inside. Not exactly the relaxing weekend I had planned.
I spend that night on the living room floor, with my mom and dad. Each one of us wrapped up in a sleeping bag, trying to keep warm. It was my job to keep the fire going in the fireplace, so every hour or so, I would get out and put some more wood on the fire. You don't realize how much you miss the comforts of electricity until it is gone.
I don't think I slept at all that night, between the howling wind, the snapping of the trees, and having to get up and keep putting logs on the fire. It was a memory that I wouldn't trade for anything though.
The next day, we were able to get out on the road at least. I remember driving over to the hospital to see my grandfather at the time, and seeing drifts along the side of the road that were several feet high. I couldn't get over how much this looked like scenes from North Dakota, and not Georgia. Absolutely amazing.
We spent the day driving around, looking at the snow that was quickly becoming a memory. There were trees down everywhere, and power was still out, but we all sensed this was something unique..something that we would never see again. We took it all in. OK, maybe my Mom was miserable. But my Dad and I seemed to enjoy it all.
Two days later, the power was on, the snow had melted, and all that remained was the smell of pine sap in the air, and trees in the backyard waiting to be cleaned up. Somewhere, buried in the collection of photographs, and books, and other packed away items back home, there is a video of that day. My dad and I walking in the field behind their house...trees bowing down, screaming winds, and snow flying horizontally. Someone might find it one day, and wonder what we were doing, on a day like that, strolling along the plains in North Dakota.
Monday, March 12, 2007
Friday, March 9, 2007
Wednesday, March 7, 2007
Figured it was time to take a break from all the repugnant news of the past few days...so here's a video of me taking my driver's test.
Snowfall amounts from today's lame "snowstorm":
Falls Church 2.0"
Tuesday, March 6, 2007
The photograph is of former U.S. Marine Staff Sergeant Eric Alva.
The man in the background is Representative Marty Meehan, D-MA. Meehan has re-introduced legislation to repeal the US Military "Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy. Alva was the first U.S. soldier wounded in Iraq, and has since come out as gay.
Let's see her say that word to him, or perhaps to my buds who play on this team. I think she might be a little more careful with her words if that were the case. I tend to believe anyway, that this whole Coulter affair will now fade away anyway. The Libby scandal has taken center stage. There is something rotten in this city, and some of us have known it for a long time. Just another card slowly being pulled out from the stack.
On to more enjoyable topics...the weather!
Snow in the forecast! A quick clipper system tonight could bring us a few inches. What was really no winter to speak of, through all of December and January, has been made up for during February and March.
Only about 13 days left until Spring.
Hand on the throttle, I can hear the engine now.
COLMES: Ann, you are tap-dancing around my question. I asked you a very simple question...
COULTER: No, I'm not.
COLMES: I didn't ask about the N word. I simply said, you write this off and say, oh, it was only a joke...
COULTER: And I just said why I wouldn't.
COLMES: But you used a word that's very offensive to gays. Would you use a word offensive to another group of people and say, oh, it was only a joke? Where do you draw the line?
COULTER: It isn't offensive to gays. It has nothing to do with gays. It's a schoolyard taunt, meaning wuss. And unless you're telling me that John Edwards is gay, it was not applied to a gay person.
Saturday, March 3, 2007
Friday, March 2, 2007
Thursday, March 1, 2007
What if, you knew "that something" was a
fact...because it was part of you.
What if others just had an opinion.
What if you had to listen to the people with opinions speak as if they had the facts.
How would you react?
Last night Pete and I watched some of this on HBO.
I watched as much as I could before I made him change the channel.
I honestly don't know where to begin. Too many thoughts, too many comments, too many things intertwined, all bound together in a web that continues to grow. A crackpot version of Christianity...a mindset...a President who is one...irrational fear...jaw-dropping ignorance...misinformation..and a level of hatred that frightens me. Horrifying and comical at the same time.
I am of course referring to Evangelicals, and their movement to influence this country.
When I was a kid I can remember hearing the word "evangelical" and thinking these were the real wackos...you know, the snake-handlers and the "speaking in tongues" kind of church-goers.
What it has evolved into nowadays is the mega-church set, who see see the bible as the word of God and only accept it in its literal word-for word translation. No exceptions.
The setting and the individuals may have changed, but the drama that plays out is still pretty much the same. Raising the hands, running down the aisles, MTV style presentations with smoke machines...no different than the drama of snake handling and speaking in tongues in a small country church years ago.
I just don't get it.
I see it as people who have such a desperate need to be approved by others that they must in essence "perform".
This is not a personal relationship with God, it's a weekly play put on for others to see you as a dedicated servant to God, worthy of an academy award. It fills their personal void to be accepted. It is repulsive.
The evangelicals offend me, of course, as a gay man.
Make no mistake about it...they hate us. If I hear "hate the sin but love the sinner" one more time I will smash someone's skull.
They are so wound up in their own imaginary gay fantasy world, and twisted misinformation, that it is pointless to even confront them.
There are no gay people in their world...just straight men who have gone astray. There is no understanding of orientation, or what it's like to grow up knowing you are gay...and they have no interest in even learning the truth.
Their opinion IS the truth.
This is the hard part. Having to listen to garbage...and I mean venomous, filthy, ignorant bile being spewed from their mouths, while not being able to convince them otherwise. If you are straight, turn the tables and imagine having to do that for every year of your life...even back as a child...."having to convince someone you are straight in a gay world, and that you've always known that".
What else I find astonishing from their viewpoint is their "literal" interpretation of the bible.
Don't tell me what it says about being gay...tell me why other verses aren't interpreted literally. Tell me why you still eat shellfish...why do you have a tattoo...why do you wear mixed fabrics in your clothing...why do you shave your sideburns...why you haven't stoned your neighbor...why have you touched your wife while she's having her period...why do you eat pork or touch a football....and others.
All these are abominations according to Leviticus. I guess they just don't matter.
I have yet to hear an answer from anyone when I ask that.
I know my orientation is part of me, and that I was aware of it even before I knew anything at all about sex. I did nothing to chose it.
Do you think evangelicals even want to hear something like that? Of course not, if blows their theory out of the water!
Of course some of them know the truth, but that would admit having to admit it to others, and thereby that would mean stop advancing a lie while living a lie yourself.
Aside from the obvious reason stated above, I am also deeply offended by documentaries like this one, because I consider myself to be a Christian...but in a true spiritual sense. I do believe in some sort of higher power, but also know that things can not be taken literally in the bible. My very existence is proof of that.
I also know the world is not flat, and I know physical proof can override religious belief. Science does not have to be at odds with religion. But if you are an evangelical, along with all they believe, everything is either one way or the other (again, except for the passages they chose to ignore). I also know that there are things I can't understand, and it would be awfully bold of anyone to say with certainty that THEY know all the answers.
All I need is this one bible verse, and to live my life treating others the way I would like to be treated, and by living it honestly. That's the best I can do.
In their twisted world, evangelicals are what a Christian is.
So many times in this documentary, they kept saying things like "We as Christians believe this..." or "Being a Christian, you can only do this..."
Evangelicals and Christian are not one in the same!
You are a warped, fundamentalist version of what Christianity is, at the heart, a religion that teaches love and acceptance.
Sure, every denomination has its issues, but the the ones I am familiar with...Methodist, Presbyterian, Episcopalian, Unitarian... they promote the overall general message of Christianity, not a fire and brimstone, literal interpretation of it.
Having been raised in the Methodist Church I was instilled with "true" Christian values by my parents and my church. Nobody, and I repeat...NOBODY can tell me otherwise, or challenge my relationship with God based on who I am...because I did not chose that.
And that's what religion should be....a personal relationship with God.
To these crackpots, I can't have a relationship with God and with Pete. Sure, I could leave Pete, live alone, and then die...knowing I never was able to love someone, which I'm sure the evangelicals would be more than happy to see. But that will not happen.
Pete doesn't know how to cook ;-)
I think I've rambled enough.
It's not easy.
Straight men wouldn't last five minutes in our shoes.
Can't wait for Jesus Camp to come out on DVD. I might need a Valium.