Friday, December 29, 2006

cuz today, i'm cleaning out my closet

or my mom's closet.

4 or 5 hours, and we only did the front half.

some key findings:
old art portfolios. proof positive that i am an irredeemable pack rat. i found this old gessoed picture of some japanese fish that i HATED. hated making it, hated how it looked, hated that my parents put it up on the wall, told my sister i hated it when she held it up, and STILL had a hard time throwing it away.

a whole box of my sister's old school stuff, cards, etc. two great language arts sentences from her, age 11 (vocab words bolded):
1. Will you probe my case?
2. The Red Sox will vie with the Mets to see who will win the Super Bowl.
also learned from language arts folder: my sister didn't think her name fit her...she would have preferred Joni Marie.

other great finds from my sister's old stuff: a valentine's card from second grade from a "J.J." it was a super cute little kitten that said "you'd be a Purr-fect Valentine" with a hand written addendum "not for me."

also: a card from my grandmother, my father's mother, written after she talked to the two of us on the phone, a long long time ago. she made reference to me saying hello and saying some things "in [my] own language." we also saw on other cards her progression into dementia -- she went from writing long notes in cursive to signing her name in six-year-old scrawl to having my aunt sign for her. she died when i was ten, and wasn't with it for a long time before that, so i don't remember her vibrant, clever, and happy, how she was in this card.

also: several cards from me, including an original valentine poem. the cards were always well chosen like: "sweet...compassionate...caring" (outside) "but enough about my teddy bear! it's YOUR birthday." (inside) when i showed her, she said "yeah, you were always weird."

Friday, December 22, 2006

christmas, duh.

so i've been into this whole conscious-consuming thing for a while now...trying to be responsible about how you spend your money and where your food and clothing comes from. to try to be a 100% conscious consumer is like beating your head against a wall, though. if you buy something that's good for the environment, you might be buying it from a store that doesn't treat its employees well. if you are buying something from a store with good labor practices, you might be supporting advertising that looks creepily like underage porn (see: American Apparel). if you are buying something from a store that has great labor practices, great advertising, great environmental policies, you are either paying through the nose (as with food -- don't get me started on fair trade hot chocolate), or settling for the boring (as with clothes -- plain t-shirts for everyone! all the time!)

anyway, i'm doing my best, but christmas has thrown another wrench in the works.

i kept under my budget of $20 (each) for friends and family, and was even under for most of them, and for many was able to get something i really think they'll appreciate, but there's also an awful lot of buying just to buy, just to have something to wrap. and all my conscious consuming went out the window.

my goal for next year: periodically add to a list of responsible and personal gift ideas, within a budget. anyone want to help me start?

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

conversation between me and my mother

mother turns on QVC

"wouldn't you like that?"
"no, mom."
"a black shoulder bag?"
"no, mom."
"look at all the compartments!"
"no, mom."
"are you sure?"
"mom, repeat after me. i will never..."
"i will never"
"buy anything for my daughter"
"buy anything for my daughter"
"on QVC"
"on QVC"
"Home Shopping Network"
(disgusted look) "i NEVER shop on Home Shopping Network!"

Monday, December 18, 2006

movin' on east

t-minus 4 hours, before i'm on that jet plane and headed for the coast.

so this leaving business does not seem real. i'll be back in january for about 10 days, and then i'll see many people at our denomination's big ministerial conference, so i don't think it's going to REALLY hit me until February, when everyone's in classes and i'm...doing whatever it is i'll be doing.

the thing about being at seminary is that it is like college, but more adult. so you're surrounded by friends (like college) but you live in your own apartment (unlike college, for me at least). and (generally) people are more mature, have had some experiences, are independent. and you can sit around in the lounge at school talking about church and theology and feminism andmaking jokes that only seminarians think are funny, and it's just kind of awesome. but you know from the beginning it's not permanent. i don't really know what i'm saying here. i'm waxing nostalgic. it's like 6:30 in the morning.

also, in January i'm driving the majority of my stuff back. i was planning to pack up most of my clothes to bring home on the plane, but i underestimated the amount of clothes i have, so there is a great deal of clothing left in my apartment. in addition, i'm really worried about the capacity of my little Honda to fit all my stuff (actually, there's no frickin' WAY my Honda will fit all my stuff -- and i don't even have that much). i don't have a trailer hitch either so that's not an option. i just had the brilliant idea that i should have driven a bunch home, flown back in Jan., then rented an SUV to drive back the rest (like, the larger stuff), but too late for that now. maybe i'll leave stuff and exact that plan in may when i have to come back to graduate. or in march maybe i'll fly out for a visit and then drive stuff back.

t minus 3 hours and a half. see you all in boston.

Friday, December 15, 2006

t-minus 3 days (in half an hour that is)

you know it's finals season when i start posting more. it's 11:30, i'm halfway through a paper due at 10 in the morning.

it's that incapability of getting things done early thing. two days ago i stayed up until 4 with a friend writing a paper that i care about far less than this one.

i have nothing else to say. time to check my email.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

t-minus 4 days (or: my weakness for surveys)

1. The phone rings who do you want it to be?
someone who knows how to punctuate properly

2. When shopping at the grocery store, do you return your cart?
i'm a nerd like that. if i decide i don't want something i also will never just leave it on a random shelf. i always put it back where it goes.

3. In a social setting, are you more of a talker or a listener?
if i know people and feel comfortable i talk away. if i don't know people i sit in a corner and think "be less awkward! be less awkward!" but that never usually works.

4. Do you take compliments well?
i'm getting better. i like to explain them away. example:
person: you look nice.
me: i had to totally fight with my hair this morning. i got my pants for five dollars. i'm really wearing a mask. STOP LOOKING AT ME!

5. Are you an active person?:
i'm more passive aggressive.

6. If abandoned alone in the wilderness, would you survive?
define "wilderness." and "survive." and "alone."

7. Do you like to ride horses?
yes. but i don't get to much. my parents wouldn't let me have a horse to keep in the basement, the cheapskates.

8. Did you ever go to camp as a kid?
yeah. 3. loved 2, hated 1.

9.what was you favorite game(s) as a kid?
playing pretend.

10. Are you judgmental?
another thing i'm working on.

11. Could you date someone with different religious beliefs than you?
i COULD. i COULD do anything. i don't think i WOULD though. my faith is my life, so that'd be hard.

12. Use three words to describe yourself.
nerd yet hot. =)

13. If you had to choose, would you rather be deaf or blind?

14. Are you continuing your education?
yes. but i'm almost done.

15. Do you know how to shoot a gun?
um...i have only held a real gun shooting skeet in alaska. i was good at it, for unknown reasons. the people i was with were like "it's cuz you're from the big mean city!" but that's not it. anyway, i hate guns, so even though i have this amazing hidden talent, i probably won't be cultivating it anytime soon.

16. If your house was on fire, what would be the first thing you grabbed?
my computer -- to save pictures, poetry, sermons, music etc.

17. How often do you read books?
all the freakin' TIME.

18. Do you think more about the past, present or future?
um. um. um. all of them i guess.

19. What is your favorite children's book?
a wrinkle in time. or alexander and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. or on the day you were born. (torgo, do you have that one?)

20. What are you listening to?
janet jackson on

21. How tall are you?
5' 10"

22. Where is your ideal house located?
somewhere where i can walk everyplace i need to go and my friends are close enough to come over all the time.

23. Who are your best friend(s)?
i don't like superlatives. i have plenty of awesome friends.

24. Last person you talked to?
caroline (i'm doing this at work...shhh!)

25. Have you ever taken pictures in a photo booth?
only when i stick my head in on other people.

26. When was the last time you ate at Olive Garden?
uh...last semester.

27. What are your keys on your key chain for?
my apartment, my car, my first car (that is in Camden now, but i still have the key), the club my father insists i put on my THIRTEEN YEAR OLD CAR just in case someone says "i feel like stealing a crappy old car today!" also the keys to my parents' house in boston and my research room in the library.

28. Where was the furthest place you traveled today?:
the library

29. Where is your current pain?
i feel pretty good, actually

30. Do you like mustard?
yes. but not as much as mayonnaise.

31. Do you prefer to sleep or eat?:
eat, fo' sure

32. Do you look like your mom or dad?
um, both i think. isn't that how it works? i have my dad's evil eyebrows and crooked teeth and my mom's irrational hair.

33. How long does it take you in the shower?:
10 minutes, or less if i'm in a hurry.

34. Can you do splits?
i can do BANANA splits. heh heh.

35. What movie do you want to see right now?
whale rider. i borrowed it and it's just sitting in my house.

36. Do you put lotion on your dogs or cats?
no, but once my sister squirted her cat with water and she (the cat, not my sister) fell off the counter and fractured her leg. i'm just saying.

37. What did you do for New Year's?
i saved this girl's life! i was out with my friends and we were in the bathroom line and she passed out and i caught her. super xtina!

38. Do you think The Grudge was scary?
i think YOUR FACE is scary.

39. What was the cause of your last accident?
me. running a stop sign into a truck.

40. What are you drinking?
my saliva

41.Was your mom a cheerleader?
no. but she was really sweet

42. What's the last letter of your middle name?

43. Who did you vote for on American Idol?
nobody last time, but i have voted in the past. i can't remember who. the people i vote for never win. my life SUCKS!

44. How many hours of sleep do you get a night?

45. Do you like care bears?
only if they get a nerdy bear.

46. What do you buy at the movies?
i usually sneak in candy. sometimes if i'm feeling special, or if someone else is buying, i'll get some popcorn

47. Do you know how to play poker?
yup. i'm not a good bluffer though. or am i?

48. Do you wear your seatbelt?
yes! everyone should.

49. What do you wear to sleep?
sweatpants or shorts and a t-shirt or tank top usually.

50. Anything big ever happen in your hometown?
dude, i'm from boston. c'mon. ever heard of paul revere? john hancock? sam adams? yeah.

51. How many meals do you eat a day?
at least 3. i try to be disciplined about my food.

52. What do you think says the most about a person on their myspace page?
people's comments about them.

53. Ever been to LA?

54. Did you eat a cookie today?
not yet.

55. Do you use cuss words in other languages?
i don't swear at all.

56. Do you steal or pay for your music downlownds?
pay of course. ethics, my friends!

57. Do you hate chocolate?
i LOVE chocolate.

58. What do you and your parents fight about the most?

59. Are you a gullible person?
i pretend i'm not but i totally am.

60. Do you need a boyfriend to be happy?
gosh, i hope not.

61. If you could have any job (assuming you have the skills) what would it be?
a broadway star.

62. Are you easy to get along with?
pretty much.

63. What is your favorite time of day?

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

t-minus 5 days

monday night the seminary had a christmas party with a gingerbread house contest and we (a team of my roomate, my friend and i) won an honorable mention for "house best representing today's culture." we built a lost themed house.

(it's actually eko's church, had it been completed before the black smoke got to him.)

the rear view

the polar bear cave (note one of the polar bears is dead)

tree (with coconuts)

fire, Jin's net/the raft, whichever way your imagination takes you.

what Bernard was trying to do, and could have succeeded at, if he didn't get so pissy.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

the last days.

warning: all posts for the next week or so will probably be overly sentimental and nostalgic.

so, over the next week i will be attending my last classes in seminary EVER.

(until my doctorate, of course)

transition is always bittersweet for me -- saying goodbye, resettling myself. i'm not great at goodbyes, because i'm not great at telling people how i feel about them. it's strange, if i offer to give someone a long hug, i probably won't miss them that much, but if i try to run away with a quick, tight, smile and a short nod and they have to tackle me to say a proper goodbye, i am going to miss them more than i want to admit. (this isn't always a definitive rule of thumb, but it is true that the more someone means to me the harder it is for me to express it...How to Cure Emotional Stuntedness is not one of the courses my seminary offers).

anyway, in addition to my own processing, people keep coming up and going, "one more week, aren't you SAD?"

Friday, December 08, 2006

a resolution on pedestrians when it is very cold (or, an ode to foster ave.)

(after joe s.)

WHEREAS, it is right now approx. 3 degrees or less in Chicago, with a wind chill factor of exactly a lot, making it, shall we say, FUH-REEZING.

WHEREAS, my coat looks like a sleeping bag but is still only a coat and therefore not heated.

WHEREAS, if you are in a car, you are first, protected from the wind, and second, most likely heated. it follows that you are therefore warmer than me or any other pedestrian.

WHEREAS, i'm in the crosswalk, fergoshsakes. i'm being a good citizen!

WHEREAS, you have a red light so you will have to stop soon anyway. even if you have a green light, nowhere you have to go is that important.

MAY IT HITHERTOFORENOWSOTHERE BE RESOLVED, that when i am standing and shivering on the side of the road, you should let me cross, not drive past me. please?

Sunday, December 03, 2006

more fun with tunes.

1. Put your music player on shuffle.
2. Press forward for each question.
3. Use the song title as the answer to the question.

NO CHEATING...(i only cheated once, to skip a song i hadn't even put on my computer)

What does next year have in store for me?
are you that somebody? --aaliyah

What does your love life look like?
stop in the name of love --the supremes

What do I say when life gets hard?
i'm on my way --proclaimers

What do I think when I get up in the morning?
she --the monkees

What song will I dance to at my wedding?
love overflowing --sandtown children's choir

What do you want as a career?
dance --nas (well, that's appropriate)

Your favorite saying
black or white --michael jackson

Favorite place?
brown eyed girl --van morrison

What do you think of your parents?
mary, mary --monkees (hey, mary's my mom's real first name! kooky!)

Where would you go on a first date?
better man --pearl jam (heh.)

Drug of choice?
the locomotion --little eva

Describe yourself:
prolouge (little shop of horrors) --from the musical (obviously. and i think i take offense at this)

What is the thing I like doing most?
crazy --gnarls barkley

The song that best describes the president?
man in the mirror --michael jackson (let's pause for a moment and consider the implications of this)

What is my state of mind like at the moment?
this is my world --hootie & the blowfish

How will I die?
can't give up now --mary mary

The song you'll put as the subject?
part of me --sandtown children's choir

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

accentuate the positive

i could be posting about this crazy fool <--, but after watching his rampage, the whole thing just makes me feel gross, so i'm not going to.

INSTEAD, i'm going to talk about this dude -->, who i decided i love. i don't know tons about the story, but from what i've read so far, it appears he is selling shoes and athletic gear, good quality stuff, for $15 dollars or less per item, even the stuff that is most top of the line. just to provide people who might otherwise break the bank to buy sneakers with affordable merchandise. people, this is profound. amazing. this man is thinking about OTHER HUMANS, not about money! this man is selling something and not trying to turn as large a profit as possible (because, c'mon, he probably doesn't need the money) but rather trying to HELP SOMEONE ELSE. he is operating a business, but NOT THINKING capitalistically.
tell me if i'm being too optimistic, but marbury gives me some hope for the world. i just want to give him a hug.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

right now

in the middle, nay, the beginning of october, it is SNOWING in chicago. you know what that means? we're just a hope skip and a jump away from this:

Wednesday, October 11, 2006


tonight on lost they both referenced and SHOWED the final out of the 2004 world series. the world series that the red sox, the beleagured supposedly cursed red sox, WON, with the GREATEST baseball comeback in history.

i watched that final out with my hands cupped over my face, hoping it was true but thinking it was possible that something could be flubbed and the spell would be broken and we would lose. but we didn't, and we WON!

and then, two years later, it's replayed on our favorite show. well, one of them. and my roomate and i totally had a min-re-celebration.

Monday, October 02, 2006

this squash ravioli is quite possibly the weirdest looking thing i have ever made. ever.

i don't know why i think it's a good idea to cook something i've never cooked before when people are coming over.

i don't think it tastes bad. people just may be too scared of it to eat it.

i will post pictures later.

cross your fingers

tonight i made squash ravioli.

squash from the vegetable box, which this week also contained sun choke, whatever that is, and green tomatoes (which i think i will fry).

so i baked the squash, added some butter & brown sugar, put them on won ton wrappers, folded them up, tossed them in the freezer for tomorrow.

i'm serving them to some peeps coming over for dinner, so i hope this is not like the million other times i've tried something ambitious when people are coming over instead of just sticking to something i know, like scrambled eggs.

anyway, stay tuned.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

torgo, you know what to do.

1. What does your MySpace headline mean? My roomate has an action figure that says it. I'm like a Borg. You cannot resist me.

2. Elaborate on your default photo. Me at my friend's birthday party last year.

3. What'd you do last night? Watched Grey's Anatomy with some ladies. Watched Project Runway after the ladies left. Ate a chocolate chip pizza.

4. What is your current relationship status? Single, ready to mingle

5. What are you wearing right now? T-shirt, jeans, sweater, socks, studded belt.

6. What is your current problem? Having to write a long paper for next week. Not a huge deal.

7. What do you love most? These questions are too vague. I need more structure. This answer could be Jesus, cheesecake, or the Princess Bride, depending...

8. Who makes you most happy? Plenty of people make me really happy.

9. Are you musically talented? Um, I used to play the clarinet. And the piano. I can read music if you give me like a minute a note.

10. If you could go back in time, and change one thing, what would you change? I would still play the clarinet. Probably other important stuff, but nothing I can think of or want to share now.

11. If you MUST be an animal for ONE day-what would you be? Horse. I'd just, you know, run around.

12. Ever have a near death experience? No

13. Can you dance? Can _I_ dance? Can a fish swim? Can a bird fly?

14. What's the name of the song that's stuck in your head right now? Theme from the Princess Bride, which I just watched: "come my love, I'll tell you a tale..."

15. Who did you copy and paste this from? Jessy!

16. Name someone with the same b-day as you: No idea.

17. Have you ever egged someone's house? No, but once I helped clean eggs off of someone's car. Don't egg, kids.

18. Have you ever been in a fist fight? No, I am very peaceful

19. Have you ever sung in front of a big audience? By myself, no.

20. What's the first thing you notice about the OPPOSITE sex? If they make faces at babies. If there are no babies around, well, I don't know what to do.

21. What do you usually order from Starbucks? If I go to Starbucks (which I don't usually), I get a White Chocolate Mocha.

22. Do you have a crush on one of your myspace friends? No, but I think most of them are pretty cute.

22. Do you have a crush on someone? I just wrote Johnny Depp my third fan letter of the week. Kidding, people.

23. Ever had a drunken night in Mexico? Never been to Mexico. Never been drunk actually. But...usually I stay up until 11 or 12!

24. Has anyone ever said you looked like a celebrity? When I was a preteen at camp, Keifer Sutherland (I know, I don't get it either. If you squint we maybe look like 2nd cousins). Also, Michelle Pfeiffer.

25. Do you still watch kiddy movies or TV shows? Yes

26. Did you have braces? Nope

27. Are you comfortable with your height? I wish I was a little shorter or most men were a little taller. Actually I'm fine with myself. Taller men is what I would be more comfortable with.

28. Has anyone ever done something for you? Ever? In my life? Yes. Ask a vague question, get a vague answer.

29. Do you know any other languages? Un poquito espanol. Also, working on Greek and Hebrew.

30. What's your favorite smell? Onions cooking? I don't know. Not flowers.

31. How tall are you barefoot? Huge. Gigantic. 5'10"

32. Have you ever smoked heroin? No

33. Do you own a gun? No. Peaceful, remember?

34. Who's your best friend? Myspace Tom

35. What do you think of hot dogs? Competitive eating takes all the fun out of them.

36. What's your favorite Christmas song? O Holy Night

37. What do you prefer to drink in the morning? Coffee/Tea

38. Do you do push-ups? Weird. No. But when I was little I used to show off my strength by picking up chairs.

39. Have you ever been out of the country? Yes

40. What's your favorite piece of jewelry? I wear the cross my friend got me in Mexico pretty much every day.

41. Do you like painkillers? This is a stupid question. Yes. Yes, I like painkillers. I like them so much I want to marry them.

42. What is your secret weapon to lure in the opposite sex?
my sparkling wit, breathtaking beauty, and angelic goodness.

43. Do you own a knife? I actually don't think so -- I use my roomates' knives a lot though (kitchen, not like machetes)

44. Do you have A.D.D.? No. And I'm not down with O.P.P., wouldn't like to C.U.P., always talk to the G.O.D. (OK, I'll S.T.O.P.)

45. Middle Name? Marie

46. Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment? "My head kinda hurts"
"This is taking longer than 15 minutes" "I hope no one comes in and sees me doing a myspace survey"

47. Name the last 3 things you have bought today: stuff for a care package, dinner at the "Golden Angel Pancake House," corn muffin mix for a potluck at church on Sunday

49. Name 3 drinks you regularly drink? Coffee, water, tea

50. What time did you wake up today? 8:52 AM -- two hours AFTER what my alarm was set for. Whoops.

51. Current worry? getting all my school work done this weekend

52. Current hate? I don't hate, I articulate, congratulate, enunciate, illuminate, refrigerate!

53. Favorite place to be? With fun peeps.

54. Least favorite place to be? & yesterday in stupid Chicago never-moving side street traffic

Thursday, September 28, 2006

cooking from scratch, y'all

so last semester i signed up to get a share in this locally-grown, organic vegetable box and let me just say this:

it is stretching me. i have to find uses for squash, copious amounts of tomatos, leek, kale, all kinds of crazy stuff i would not normally buy.

remember how i was freaking out about the crockpot? yesterday, i made spaghetti sauce from scratch. SCRATCH, people. this is serious.

it turned out well. i simmered away a lot of the sauce because i had the heat up too high, but i made it, and it was good, and cheaper than regular sauce (i think -- in the long run -- maybe not -- the math is too much for my head). and it used wine! crazy.

my roomates made fun of me for my fanatical measuring, and the fact that i was shaking the salt into the teaspoon, as opposed to directly into the sauce. "it says 1 tsp!" i protested, but they just shook their heads at me.

also, i made potato leek soup, which was yummy. this time i'm going to try it with half and half instead of heavy whipping cream so i don't gain a bajillion pounds just by looking at it.

also, i have three little squashes that a friend recommended i make squash ravioli with. i'm a little hesitant but i may try it this weekend. stay tuned.

Friday, September 22, 2006

procrastination. it's what i do.

today i had a meeting with my thesis advisor about my thesis. i had read some before, and although i had thought and thought and thought, i would open my computer, stare at the little blinking cursor on the blank, blank screen, shrug, and start surfing the net. i met with him at 8:30 this morning. i typed the last line of my full proposal (basic idea, because i know you want to know: a theology of motherhood that is informed by and beneficial to mothers in the inner city) at 8:11.

my stuff gets done. it always gets done. i have never turned in an assignment late (without permission at least, but even then it's rare). i just am INCAPABLE of starting anything early. i thought before that i WAS capable, i just didn't want to, but now i actually think i am quite literally incapable. literally in the authentic sense, not in the "she was literally 3 times my height!" sense.

this may not bode well for a 100 page paper, or, as my advisor put it, "a small book"

Thursday, September 21, 2006

the thing about blogging once you've abandoned your blog for a while is there's all this angst attached to it. like, do i apologize profusely? do i pretend like nothing happened? do i lie and say i tried to blog but my computer's been funny and i couldn't get through and didn't you get my voicemail? huh. weird. i swear i called...

i'm in chicago. this has been birthday week. i threw a birthday party for myself on Friday and danced until my sweat make my mascara run. and then danced some more. for those of you who are scratching your head, yes my birthday is in July, but i was one of those kids who always wanted to bring in cupcakes to school or have my friends wrap up my locker in birthday paper, but it never happened. so i threw my own birthday-at-school party.

plus friday was my sisters birthday, monday was friend #1's birthday, today is roomate's birthday -- it never ends!

this is a sucky return to blogging post. but i'm angst ridden. i don't know what else to do. i'm just listening to the cries of the masses. look what you've brought me to.

in the meantime, everyone, see little miss sunshine. tune in to the premiere of grey's anatomy. read some lucille clifton (she's my favorite). cross your fingers and hope that by 8:30 tomorrow morning i have some concrete question for my thesis.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

annabelle? thinking?

i keep all of my earrings, large and small (for those of you at NPTS, yes, i do have small earrings) in a shallow dish on my dresser.

in keeping with the "knocking crap off" thing, annabelle walked across my dresser, put her foot in the dish, and knocked all of my earrings into my open dresser drawer, where i then had to fish them out from amongst all my pants, shorts, and capris.

i said "annabelle! you knocked all my earrings off."

she looked up at me, with a certain sort of cat look. i can think of all sorts of things she might be thinking, but i want to turn it over to you, my faithful (one or two) blog readers. what was she thinking? what would she say?

annabelle wrecks the house

one day i was letting this girl drive my car. 21, practicing for her driver's exam. she worked with me at emack & bolio's. she was trying to do a three point turn (in my car) while smoking (in my car), hit the curb (in my car) and came dangerously close to a stone wall (in my car). "they will fail you for that." i said.

"really?" she said, all wide eyed, actually surprised that she would be failed for hitting the very object you are avoiding in a three point turn.

"yes. really." i said.

i decided to take her far from busy streets and obnoxious leaping stone walls that come out of no where, so we were driving some back roads of hyde park, and we came upon little kids and a box of kittens. (p.s. i am realizing the irony of all this -- that i take this girl far from anywhere she can hit a curb or a stone wall but in close vicinity to kittens and little kids -- don't worry, i get it.)

she somehow convinced me to call my sister and convince my sister to get this little orange white and gray kitten, which is annabelle. who is now in my house because my sister is at a wedding in the poconos.

annabelle is very cute. but she knocks crap over. she sticks her face in my food. she's not mellow. when she knocks crap over she looks down at it like "well, that's less crap i have to deal with when i walk across this mantle." she gets pissed when we replace the crap. she has a vendetta against my dad, and if i'm sitting on the couch, and he stops in the door way, she'll go from nuzzling my foot to leaping across the room, racing up the chair, and swiping at him.

my sister was trying to kick her of the habit of jumping up on the counter when she was little, and the vet said spray her, and when my sister sprayed her, annabelle was so startled she fell off the counter and sprained her leg...which i think makes me sister reluctant to try any new training techniques, which means when annabelle is scratching our antique (ok, old) sofa and we clap our hands and shout "hey. HEY!" she just pauses, stares, and continues. kind of like a little kid who's coloring on the wall, and you say "don't color on the wall!" and they pause and look at you as if trying to gauge what's really going to happen if they keep coloring. annabelle is not scared or intimidated by us at all anymore. we need supernanny or something, except for cats.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

just for funsies

Fill this out about your SENIOR year of high school! The longer ago it was, the more fun the answers will be.

1. Who was your best friend?
lisa, liz h, liz w, erica, thao were the main peeps

2. What sports did you play?
i think i had given up on all that by then

3. What kind of car did you drive?
sometimes erica would let me drive her dads car, without my license, but i drove like 2 miles an hour and once i ran over the grass in the emmanuel college parking lot (oops that was in sean's car), and i took a 17 point turn on cummins hwy to pick up andre holding up traffic for approximately 45 minutes.

4. It's Friday night, where were you at?
if erica had anything to do with it, nantasket beach.

5. Were you a party animal?
heh. no.

6. Were you a considered a flirt?
double heh. NO.

7. Ever skip school?
in fact, erica used to drop me off at school so i could go when the rest of them skipped.

8. Ever smoke?

9. Were you a nerd?
the definition of!

10. Did you get suspended/expelled?
what do you think?

11. Can you sing the Alma Mater?
da da da, FIGHT, FIGHT...uh.. dear old latin evermore!

12. Who was your favorite teacher?
mr. tarpey

13. Favorite class?

14. What was your school's full name?
Boston Latin School

15. School mascot?
a wolf

16. If you could go back and do it over, would you?

17. What do you remember most about graduation?
somebody's chair broke, i threw my hat up half an inch so i wouldn't lose it, my hair was way frizzy, thao had a supercute dress

18. Were you 18?
was i? i think

19. Favorite memory of your Senior Year?
oh, i don't know. that's too hard.

18. Were you ever posted up on the senior wall?
what's a senior wall?

19. Did you have a job your senior year?
whittemore's! cutting boxes, hauling supplies, all in a dress and nylons

20. Who did you date?
no one. but i got asked out for the first time!

21. Where did you go most often for lunch?
where we were allowed -- the school cafeteria

22. What did you do after graduation?
party hopped

23. When did you graduate?
june, 1996.

Friday, August 04, 2006

once there was this girl who used to blog

ok, see, the problem is twofold maybe

i have a lot of stories from the hospital that i'm not supposed to talk about.
i have a lot of stories that are semi-depressing/annoying that i don't WANT to talk about.

so here i am. looking at my blog grumbling.

a good thing: i had a birthday. i am now 28. i had a mad phat birthday bbq with just about 100 guests -- you really can count on church people!

another good thing. my awesome friend brad every once in a while comes across these great red sox tickets -- and the first time we used them this summer was at the rain delay suckface game that started with me in my dad's overcoat and ended with me cleaning out torgo's fridge. but THIS time, the day was clear, the red sox not only won, but were still in first place, and i got free popcorn (because i went to get brad's drink). anyhoo, i took a bunch of pics.

the one below is my closest player pic. hot to Trot right fielder. i also got a picture of Manny Delcarmen, newbie pitcher who grew up right down the street from me, and of Papelbon (the two of them running out from the bull pen, but i don't know which is which, so i decided against posting them. but unless one of them ran out and assumed the ready position in the field, i'm almost positive this is Nixon.

i also had to throw in a pic of my boyfriend (Big Papi, David Ortiz, or Teezy, as i like to call him when we're going for one of our moonlit walks). this is an impossibly silly picture, as it's more of the fans and the light as it is of Teezy, but it's the best i could do. the ump is right in the way of our viewing homeplate, and although brad's mom (who gets the tickets and passes them along to her offspring) called to see if they could move him, whoever makes those ump-goes-there decisions was not swayed.

this pic is of the crowd who went, high school peeps i've known forever and for some reason still like me (or hang out with me at least). this is seconds before "Wally," the Red Sox mascot comes trotting by.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

from a long silence

she emerges.

it's the second day of july, which means there are a mere 25 days until my birthday. i hope you have been saving money for a care package. if you haven't, rest easy, there is still time.

my goals are not going THAT great -- CPE is proving more exhausting than previously thought. more exhausting is that i can't say anything about it -- rules and confidentiality and such -- but i'm bursting with stories.

this much i can tell you -- i spend my mornings singing to babies (who can't escape!) and talking with children being "assessed." the afternoons i stand awkwardly in doorways, visit in silence or incessant chatter or easy conversation. i try to listen with a "third ear" and hear with the heart of the spirit -- sometimes it works and i feel lifted and sometimes i exit as awkwardly as i entered, feeling disconnected and unaccomplished. the rest of my time we dissect these feelings of disconnect or accomplishment, we investigate in an atmosphere of religious openness where God is in all of it.

two things i like especially: i like having boundaries for ministry. i like realizing that CPE is just as much about learning about me as it is about ministering to patients. i like knowing that i have to, as one chaplain said, "hold the patients loosely," it keeps me aware of my own limitations.

i like the ecumenical and interfaith environment. there are 3 catholics, 4 protestants (Methodist, UCC, Episcopalian, and me), and 3 nonChristians (Jewish, UU, and undeclared, so to speak). growing up, i encountered few people who didn't fall into three categories for me: those who believed similarly to me, or those who didn't really believe, or those whose thoughts i never knew because they didn't talk about it. i appreciate talking to others who are passionate and invested, all of us hanging on to pieces of the thing that is Truth.

but, i have taken no pictures.
i stopped with the verses at my last on call (but will start again tonight)
exercise is still limited to walks to and from the T, walks up and down the hill to the children's hospital, opting for stairs at the hospital instead of elevator (it's something, but i can't really count it, because i'm not really CHOOSING it)
i finally finished Blindness by Jose Saramago, which i loved and would highly recommend. i may not have finished it in a week, but i read it pretty steadily, which is something.
i am still studiously ignoring thinking about my thesis.

i'll be back sooner next time.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

goal update

goals accomplished this week:

two and a half books read (Street Girls, House on Mango St., halfway through White Woman's Christ, Black Woman's Jesus)

verse a day in both hebrew and greek (rock on with my bad self!)

no pictures taken, no exercise besides the walk to and from work.

however, in my defense, it's been raining all week. and i got blisters from all of my new shoes. this is why i'm not a professional, people. by friday, i was applying FIVE bandaids in the mornings, and i'm not even wearing high heels. (speaking of the stupid rain, yesterday my friend had front row sox tickets on the first base line, like FRONT ROW, and entrance to the Crown Royal Room -- meaning you get your fenway frank served to you, with fries, and we waited five hours for the rain to lighten up and the game to start, but i had to leave early anyway to say goodbye to torgo and clean out his fridge, and by then i was really kind of like "who even cares!" and then the sox lost abysmally, and even MORE abysmally today, and i think it's all because of my presence -- i'm a sport jinx, if i want teams to win they lose. i can't even pretend i like the opposite team because its like the sport jinx fairy KNOWS MY THOUGHTS! whoa a long parentheses)

the job is good -- gives me discipline, but i totally fall to crap on the weekends. i watched the entire second season of entourage over the past two days.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

I am looking for a dare to be great situation.

i have goals for my summer.
i'm putting them out there so people can be like, "so christina, your goals? get on that." you know, so i don't get lazy.

goal 1 is thesis crap. get it together, basically.
goal 2 is reading. i have about 5 books on my dresser to be read already. goal is one a week.
goal 3 is exercise. i'm trying to be realistic, so i'm taking into account that i'll be walking at least 2 miles every day for work, but i'd like to do one fun recreation activity a week. i'm trying to get friends together for a weekly/semiweekly grilling night, so recreation could be combined. now that North Park has introduced me to the wonderful world of bocce, i may have to introduce bocce to the wonderful world of Hyde Park. yeah, i know bocce's not that rigorous, but it's movement.
goal 4 is hebrew/greek. one verse a day in each.
goal 5 is the fun one: on my last day at sarah's circle lynn gave me a list of things she wants pictures of in boston (and surrounding areas). here is what it is:

Newport: any 3 mansions of the Preservation Society

Boston proper: Paul Revere's House
Old South Meeting House
Old State House
Old North Church

Lexington/Concord: Buckman Tavern
Hancock Clarke House
Monroe Tavern
Concord Museum (lantern picture)
The Old Manse

Misc: Martha's Vineyard -- she may have to settle for the Cape on this one.
House of the Seven Gables

there it is people. all this and project runway starts up again july 12.
oh yeah, and countdown to my birthday? t-minus 1 month, 25 days.

P.S. points if you guess where the headline quote is from.

the prodigal bostonian

here i am back in da bean. chillin' like a villian.

i'm in the calm before the storm here. one week of rest before CPE blows in full force.

1. went to the dentist -- apparently i brush too vigorously, but am in pretty good shape otherwise.

2. ensured i did not have TB (i'm sparing you a picture of someone giving a TB test, or what TB looks like, or what a postive TB test does to your arm. what i will tell you is that when a TB test is negative your arm just looks like your arm.)

3. went to torgo's yard sale (exceedingly successful despite the rain and the Little Dude Who Would Not Sleep) and scored 17 books, most on race and/or feminism which will be useful for my thesis unless i change my mind completely and decide to write on the theology of plumbing or something.

4. resigned myself to having to dress relatively boring-ly for the summer. no studded belts, no hoops. my dressy clothes are mostly black and grey which is not only boring but kind of depressing.

5. found a pair of sensible, comfortable, versatile (is that how you spell that?) black shoes and almost choked while paying $60 for them. i won't bother with a picture because they're too boring.

6. went to a discount outlet and instead bought FOUR pair of shoes for $70 (planning of course to return the pair from 5.) which include: one pair of sensible, comfortable, versatile black shoes, one pair of comfortable, but probably not as sensible brown shoes, one pair of hiking boots (yes, really. for when i hike. shut up! they were 10 dollars!), and one pair of comfortable but not in the least sensible or versatile sketchers boots that look like they're baskets sort of. um, but i love them, and they were only 10 dollars too! here they are:

7. read breath eyes memory, a story of the relationships of 4 Haitian and Haitian-American women, which i borrowed from a friend in JANUARY.

8. celebrated my brother's 40th birthday with cake and ice cream at his house, brought him a North Park T-shirt, played chess with nephew Seth (7), chuckled at nephew George (3) who repeats everything, was tempted by sister-in-law's new hobby of scrapbooking and selling scrapbooking materials (a tool to round the corners of a picture? a blade and tool to cut perfect ovals? i'm in!) .

10. basically just bummed around; i kind of turn into a materialistic, lazy glutton when i'm home with nothing to do, so i'm happy work is starting.

on a side note, while looking up pictures for this blog, especially the teeth one and the TB arm one, i came up with some pretty gross stuff (just by googling "arm" for heaven's sake). by googling "teeth" i found this story of a GI who was shot, point blank in the face, and the bullet was STOPPED by his TOOTH, which, needless to say, fell out. i'll spare you that picture too.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

today was my last day going to the place i volunteer, sarah's circle, before the summer ends. SC is a drop in center for homeless and low income women, and i've met some great ladies:

rosemary, who likes romance novels
sharon, who is a carpenter and an artist, who made me a rosary with a little green on it, for the irish bostonians.
brenda, who came from the south
norma, who told me "the seventh deadly sin is the reluctance to change"
mary, who told me everyone's business ("that one just acts like that so she can get her crazy check")
geraldine, who quieted tempers
jj, who told her real name to people who earned it
bunny, who couldn't leave behind the man she loved, who said she'd show me how to crochet
and lynn, the first one i ever talked to, who called me boston, who gave me a hug today, who fought with me about baseball (white sox vs. red sox), who gave me a list of sights in boston to take pictures of.

these are the few i was lucky enough to talk to -- thanks, ladies.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

study break!

i think it's hard to call it a study break when i'm not really studying -- but what can i say, i've always been a rebel. i finished my history paper on thursday, and here's what i found out about how covenant women was affected by feminism:

they weren't.

but there were a few closet rockers hiding out in amongst the rest of them so that was cool to see.

here's something else that's cool to see:

I taught this guy everything he knows

Saturday, May 06, 2006

so i'm doing this paper the work of Covenant Women (a women's group in my denomination) during the years of 1966-1976 or so. i found some interesting quotes. here's one in particular:

Many of our conflicts concerning femininity are false conflicts. A woman chooses not between a career and a family, but for being a person. And a man chooses not an aggressive career woman or a meek homemaker, but a full person who seeks after wholeness wherever she is.
Covenant Companion, Jan 14, 1966

i also attended a feminist/womanist/latina gathering of sorts at a professor's house the other night, and we talked a lot about this label of "feminist" and how people perceive it and what the cost of claiming it is. i myself have been struggling with why people find it so threatening -- i mean, i know why people find it threatening, especially men, but it's really not. it's about a pursuit of wholeness, an encouragement by society of that pursuit, an affirmation of life, as Elsa Tamez would say. what's frustrating is that a pursuit of wholeness causes segregation for me as a woman, causes hesitancy in relationships for others, turns on a switch in my brain that shocks me everytime someone talks about their "fellow man" or tells someone else to "grow a pair" or i hear suspicion or uncertainty in my own seminary about a Christian's woman's role as equal partner in the home, or as a leader in the church, or i see young girl's magazine stressing and restressing the importance of appearance.

i am a Christian, i am a woman, i am white, i am a feminist, i am an activist. how do i make these things work together? how do i affirm life (my own and others') the way Christ affirmed life?

Thursday, May 04, 2006

crunch time

mystics paper due on monday.
history paper due thursday.
that's just the assignments we're thinking about.
there is no motivation.
as evidenced by my presence on this blog, and myspace, and random other sites i haven't visited forever but which i won't turn off.

if you can't come and physically remove the internet from my computer (and really, if you did that, i'd kill you, so don't), please offer some words of encouragement. tell me: you can do it! stay on course! stay strong! press on!

(and ok, i wouldn't kill you. i might weep a little though.)

Thursday, April 27, 2006

finally! alaska

day 1 we went up to hatcher's pass, where supposedly you go sledding. but it was pretty much white out conditions so we didn't do anything. here's a picture of katie's dog norm running in the white out (there are mountains behind him):

when the sun burned off it was pretty amazing. this is my "wild God" picture:

day 2 was the hiking/puking/peeing day on a little mountain they call baldy. here i am just about as far as i made it,

and this is how i got down:

the peak behind me is where katie, katie's mom, and katie's aunt got to

day 3 we hiked some more, and saw moose poop (but no moose) (but i've seen a moose in Maine):

day 4 we hiked up the butte (like a hill to Alaskans, but a pretty good walk for me). This is a view of pioneer peak

and a view of knik glacier (way in the back ground)

day 5: this is me shooting some clay pigeons: this is momentous, probably the first and last time you'll see me holding an actual gun.

day 6 and 7 we hung out with the fam -- easter sunday and all -- so no pics -- but an amazing trip overall.

fun with tunes

Put your music player on shuffle.
Press forward for each question.
Use the song title as the answer to the question.
No cheating!

How am I feeling today?:
sweet mistakes (ellis paul).

Will I get far in life?
don't speak (no doubt).

How do my friends see me?
there's gotta be more (stacey orrico).

Where will I get married?:
this is my world (hootie).

What song is the story of my life?
circle of life (lion king).

What was high school like?:
motown philly (boyz II men). "doin' a little east coast swing"

How can I get ahead in life?:
one thing (finger eleven). if anyone wants to know about the one thing, that'll be $25

What is the best thing about me?:
more than words (extreme).

How is today going to be?:
learning to fly (tom petty).

What is in store for this weekend?:
ms. fat booty (mos def).

How is my life going?:
redemption song (bob marley). actually, pretty darn perfect

What song will they play at my funeral?:
robin hood theme (robin hood -- disney). me & my stupid collection of disney

How does the world see me?:
kiss the girl (little mermaid). well, i kind of like this disney one. =)

Will I have a happy life?:
Jesus walks (kanye west).

What do my friends really think of me?:
i just can't wait to be king (lion king).

Do people secretly lust after me?:
One (u2).

How can I make myself happy?:
karma (alicia keys).

What should I do with my life?:
the bare necessities (jungle book).

Will I have kids?:
not in nottingham (robin hood).

What is some good advice?:
you don't know how it feels (to be me) (tom petty).

What do I think my current theme song is?:
meant to live (switchfoot).

What does everyone else think my current theme song is?:
play that funky music white boy (wild cherry).

What type of men/women do you like?:
yesterday (beatles).

that's it -- i will leave the rest of the commenting up to you.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

dumb babies

once a bunch of us were sitting around talking about babies. my friend liz said that she was not into breastfeeding and i said that breastfeeding is better for your baby's brain development (or something) and she said "well, my baby will just have to be a little bit dumb then."

so this morning i was reading the Anchorage Daily News and came across this headline: "Study links poetry and lower achievement test scores." naturally i read on, and this is what it had to say (this is from the Washington Post orginally, so if someone without dial up wants to link to it, that'd be great. i don't have the patience):

"Fill your house with books if you want little Billy or Beth to grow up to be an academic all-star. Shakespeare is good. But stay away from poetry [side note: since when is Shakespeare NOT poetry? maybe they're thinking poetry equals e.e. cummings "anyone lived in a pretty how town" or whatever that is. anyway.] -- it may dumb down your child.
A research team headed by demographer Jonathan Kelley, of Brown University and the University of Melbourne, analyzed data from a study of scholastic ability in 43 countries, including the United States.
The researchers found that a child from a family have 500 books at home scored, on average, 112 points higher on the acheievement test than one from an otherwise identical family have only one book -- and that's after they factored in parents' education, occupation, income and other things associated with academic performance.
The researchers say a big home library reflects the parents' dedication to the life of the mind, which probably nurtures scholastic accomplishment in their offspring.
They also found that not all books are created equal: 'Having poetry books around is actively harmful by the same amount,' perhaps because it signals a 'Bohemian' lifestyle that may encourages kids to become guitar-strumming, poetry-reading dreamers."

in the great words of my friend liz, "well, my [kids] will just have to be a little bit dumb then."

don't get bored

i will make a huge post about alaska when i get back -- but here i am on dial up and using up katie's parents phone line, and i want to put my pictures on too, so it's just not the best time.

but to give you little morsels to tide you over:
1. hiked like every single day, and wore the same clothes
2. peed in the snow on a mountain, creating this neat little skinny hole that goes all the way down to the bottom
3. lost many, many games of ping pong
4. saw the northern lights
5. threw up half way up a mountain, and then KEPT GOING, like the wonder woman i am
6. still didn't make it all the way up, because met the rest of my party coming down
7. saw a glacier (from a distance)
8. went to a house concert
9. shot skeet with the house concert performer (first time holding a real gun)
10. joined in at "supper club" with katie's family.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

your friends. your life. your facebook.

so this morning i got an email from inviting me to join the group for the national sleepout i'm participating in ( i had forgotten i even made a facebook profile, but it turned out i had, obviously, and i think it was because my friend dubie told me to check it out and you can't check it out unless you have a profile.

the funny thing is, when i looked on it, i had a message, from a one "Christopher Tinglof" at West Point. i've never met a Tinglof i'm not related to, so that was a trip -- except he could be related to me. but he doesn't look like me.

but then i looked up North Park people, and there are a ton, and for a second i thought i could fill out a new profile and have all these friends, but then i felt overwhelmed (much like in the kitchen yesterday) and just closed out the site. i wrote Christopher Tinglof back though.

Monday, March 27, 2006

everything turned out ok

except for a few grains of crunchy rice, the dinner was a success.

in addition, i got a phone call from one of my former youth group students tonight. unprompted, he said "Christina, you're the coolest Caucasian I know. I want to thank you for coming into my life."

that was way better than a successfully cooked crockpot meal.


how do you even know when a crockpot is working!? this one doesn't have a light or anything!

fellas, if you want a "traditional" little wifey who's going to cook and clean for you, don't come near me. i'm a slob with good-flavored mush.

good flavored mush

peeps, i'm trying to do this slow-cooker chicken thing for a small crowd that's coming over tonight, and i'm really scared it's going to fail. first, i have never tried slow cooker meal before. second, it called for 3 cans of cream of mushroom soup condensed, and i only had two cans, NON condensed, and one can of cream of chicken (also non condensed). third, i read the reviews AFTER i started the recipe, and they were all like "good flavor, but mushy!" FOURTH, my roommate walked in and was like "milk? why are you adding milk? won't that come out weird? milk comes out weird in a crockpot" and i was all "the recipe called for it, see, SEE????"

good gracious this is going to be a mess. it'll be like bridget jones diary when all of her friends came over and ate that blue soppy soup. i'll have to make everyone promise to still be my friend when it's all over.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

how much do i love dancing?

so much. in fact, i always make my friends from boston go out dancing, even though no one really likes to dance as enthusiatically as i do...i think they do it just to humor me, much like when we go bowling. someone said to me once "i've never seen someone dance as energetically as you do while completely sober." which may not have been a compliment, but i'm taking it as one.

anyway, a seminary friend had a little dance party in her apartment tonight with some funky african music, and i had a good time. it's been a long time since i got down.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

church update

after going to Al Green's church in Memphis last week during Sankofa, i kind of took Torgo's advice. i didn't go Quaker, but I went to Reba Place, which is a Mennonite church. it was cool, but my problem isn't with the first time i go to a church, it's with the second and third time. really, it's with my attitude. i have a shopping list for what i want, and i don't think that's the best way to go about it. finding a church home isn't (or shouldn't be) another consumeristic venture (finding a boy, however, that's another matter). anyway, i have an appointment with the women who was my spiritual director for a class we took last semester -- she was incredibly helpful in figuring out some crappy stuff that was going on last year, so i'm hopeful she'll help me figure out this Debbie Downer attitude I have towards going to church.

oh, did you want to hear more about Al's church? yes, he sang. "one day at a time, sweet Jesus." yes, in falsetto. and there were people there from all over the world (literally: Japan, Sweden, New Zealand, Canada). i kind of thought it would be this lavish place on a main street, but it was this little podunk church off the beaten path in a neighborhood. and just about 60% of the people there that day were visitors. and Al Green totally called out this woman who came in late. she was trying to sneak in and he says "Sarah, i thought you weren't going to make it today."

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

get on board, children

Sankofa is a Akan word that means "We must go back and reclaim our past so we can move forward; so we understand why and how we came to be who we are today" (don't you wish one English word meant as much?)

the sankofa class at the seminary is one done to promote racial righteousness/reconcialiation -- whites are partnered with people of color and we take a trip down south to revisit famous landmarks and museums from the civil rights era. the museums were as museums are, but i really liked seeing the actual places -- the 16th st. church in Birmingham Alabama (where we were stuck for a day and a night while our bus was in danger of exploding), where the bomb killed those 4 girls, Medgar Ever's home.

But the best part was meeting Hollis Watkins, a former member of SNCC (Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee), who is now doing leadership training and community organizing in Mississippi. he's not a young sprout anymore, but honestly one of the coolest people i have ever met in my lifetime. the civil rights movement is glamorized in a way, and it makes it hard for people to fight injustice today. racism today is more subtle and nuanced, more dangerous, as Hollis told us, because the subtle nature allows people to exist in a state of denial. but because today's freedom fighters are not leading marches (as much) or pushing dramatic boycotts or getting shoved off lunch counters, it's not getting as much attention. he also talked about lessons that could be learned from the movement, like working intergenerationally and encouraging indigenious leadership. he was also so freakin' humble, i didn't know what to do with him. amazing.

and he closed by singing with us:
get on board, children, children
get on board, children, children
get on board, children, children
let's fight for human rights

Thursday, March 09, 2006

mechthild is kinda cool

so for my history requirement at seminary i'm taking medieval female mystics at a seminary in evanston (about 20 minutes away) and these mystics are something else -- they were being subsersive within a pretty constricting system, mostly by using accepted doctrine and theology and adding their own flavor to it. hildegard, the first mystic we studied, talked about virtue all the time (they're all big on chastity), which was done, but envisioned the virtues as women, which was NEVER done. the women would also talk themselves down, call themselves lowly, because if they were too confident, men wouldn't read their stuff. so we've been wondering in class how much of their self-depreciation is real and how much is just to get a wider audience for their work.

anyway, mechthild (and, really, is there a cooler name possible?) is big on relating to God as a lover -- indeed a lot of her stuff reads somewhat like a romance novel -- which she did on purpose. she was also a poet, and a lot of her work is in poetic form, which is exciting for me. here's one i like:

Book I, 8
The Most Lowly Praises God in 8 Things
O you burning Mountain.
O you chosen Sun.
O you full Moon.
O you bottomless Well.
O you unscalable Height.
O you brightness without measure.
O Wisdom without ground.
O Mercy without restraint.
O Might without opposition.
O Crown of all honors!
The most lowly person you ever created praises you.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

i'm going to have some weird dreams

if you haven't seen Grizzly Man...i don't know whether i would tell you to see it or not to see it. quite possibly the strangest movie i have ever, ever seen.

Friday, March 03, 2006

i have to start exercising

i'm going to alaska in april! with a good friend who has to go home, and because she's a resident of alaska, gets a $60 companion fare. and i get to be the companion. i told her i want to go hiking in the tundra, so it's time to start getting in shape. i'm also glad she has all that mountaineering-special-north-face jacket kind of stuff, because i don't, and it would be embarrassing to try and go hiking in the alaskan bush with my winter jacket, which looks like a burgundy sleeping bag.

whenever i try to go out into nature it's funny. i love the woods, don't get me wrong, and if i am choosing to vacation, i'd rather it be out in the middle of nowhere (since i'm in cities all the time) but i'm pretty clueless. narrative example:

at my college, we had to do some sort of outdoor orientation, and when i was looking at all our options i thought to myself "hey, i can do a thru-hike!" at the same time thinking "what exactly is a thru hike?"

i had to buy all my supplies, including a monstrosity of a frame pack that was leftover from when Eastern Mountain Sports used to rent frame packs. it was external, so it made me look like a hippie, especially when i filled it and walked through my neighborhood.

ok, i didn't really do that, but i did fill it and go to the closest place to hike near my house (a "hill" that takes 20 minutes to summit).

and not that there's anything wrong with being a hippie. or a hill.

but anyway! then i bought a stuff sack for my parents' old school sleeping bag (cloth, olive green on the outside and a duck pattern on the inside). it didn't matter that this wasn't the type of sleeping bag to be stuffed, because i didn't really know how a stuff sack worked. i rolled my sleeping bag up and tried to fit it in the sack. not surprisingly, it didn't fit. so much for stuff sacks i said to myself.

when we actually started the trip, there i was, cut off jean shorts ("make sure you don't wear jeans!" our leaders said to us the night before -- but those were all the shorts i had -- city people don't wear shorts!), gargantuan frame pack, rolled sleeping bag hanging from the bottom. next to all these other first years who obviously had done this before, as evidenced by their sleek internal LL Bean fram packs (sleeping bags inside, apparently, in their stuff sacks), their swishy Umbro shorts, and their Nalgene bottles (dudes, i had never HEARD of Nalgene! or North Face! or Umbro! or stuff sacks, fergoshsakes!)

as it turns out, i wasn't the slowest hiker, but all that meant is that while one leader was at the front of the pack with everyone who knew what they were doing, the other leader was at the back of the pack with the SLOWEST person, and i was by myself in the middle, red faced, hair frizzed out from sweat and rain (cuz it rained the first few days) (i looked like a lion).

but i did it. and i made it.

and in just about a month i'll be doing the same thing (only slightly better) in the alaskan tundra!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

andy griffith is always right

so torgo posted on his blog that don knotts just recently died. poor don knotts -- a life time of playing second fiddle doofuses (doofusi?) to people like andy griffith.

my parents watch andy griffith every night -- it drives me CRAZY. andy is the smartest, nicest guy in town. he hardly ever screws up, and when he does, it's because of something someone else did. barney (don knotts) never knows what to do, always does the wrong thing, and is easily duped. aunt bea never knows what to do (besides cook), and is easily duped. opie's pretty smart, but also pretty small, so there's no competition there -- and who else is around? Goober? the town drunk?

anyone remember the episode where they were making a commercial with aunt bea in it and she didn't realize they were making fun of her (but andy did!) and then got all mad when andy wanted to shut the operation down. andy griffith suffers for being right!

or the one when the government was sending money through the town and told andy and barney to keep it top secret and barney told everyone so the town came out and held a parade. andy griffith keeps your dirtiest secrets!

sigh. don't get me started on leave it to beaver.

Monday, February 27, 2006

church hopping is like dating

i have been church hopping around Chicago since i got here a year and a half ago. i always GO, i just always go to different places, which sounds cool in the beginning, but when you get down to the nitty gritty, it's actually not that cool.

at the beginning of the year i told myself i was just going to stop and settle someplace, but whenever i would actually do that, i would think to myself "hey, wait, i don't want to be here" and then i would move on.

my "things i want in a church" list is slightly longer than my "things i want in a guy list," and goes a little something like this:
challenging, interesting, not-hard-to follow sermons
commitment to social justice/ awareness of social injustice
diverse congregation
use of gender inclusive language (not just from the pulpit, from the hymnals, Bible translation, etc.)

on Sunday, i went to Lasalle St. Church on the West Side of Chicago with some friends from seminary, and i kind of liked it. it for sure had the first 3 things going on, it was rocking with the last thing (even used non-gendered language for God -- things like Godself and God's instead of pronouns), and there was a woman pastor.

we left pretty quickly, so i didn't get a chance to see hospitality in action, and it seemed pretty white (but the woman we went with said that changes week to week), but on the whole, i think i'll go back.

i'm not going to talk about it anymore as there's a chance i could get all excited and then decide that the church sucks next week. but i feel like the tide may have turned.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

mail call

my parents are totally random in this completely awesome and generous way. today in the mail i got a pack of chocolate covered cherries and then seperately a letter with $20 in it from my dad. his letters are usually no more than a page, and he always always staples some money to it.
this letter started with "What's gnu?" and ended with "One parting thought, what would you call a country populated only by male deer?" then, written upside down at the bottom of the page, "stag-nation"

Friday, February 24, 2006

busy-ness should be illegal

now that i'm embodying my new role as extrovert, i'm finding balancing schoolwork and people really difficult. take wednesday for instance -- we didn't have a lost party like we usually do, because it was a rerun (darn you, lost!) -- but a bunch of peeps came over and there was ice cream and dance dance revolution, and what's a girl to do? go to the library instead? please.

this weekend, though, for reals, i'm cracking down, catching up on all the history reading i have neglected because history annoys me (sorry Binah!).

Monday, February 20, 2006

go here

i'm not explaining how or why i found this, but this story needs to be told.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

there is a girl inside

so for one of my classes we are reflecting on our adolescence.

i had a revelation this weekend that factors into this reflection process for me.

lucille clifton, my favorite poet, has a poem called "there is a girl inside"
this is it:

There is a girl inside.
She is randy as a wolf.
She will not walk away and leave these bones
to an old woman.

She is a green tree in a forest of kindling.
She is a green girl in a used poet.

She has waited patient as a nun
for the second coming,
when she can break through gray hairs
into blossom

and her lovers will harvest
honey and thyme
and the woods will be wild
with the damn wonder of it.

i got inspired by this in writing my reflection -- in my adolescence (and in some sense after as well), there was a girl inside. the girl i was at 2, and 6, and 9, wild and imaginative and smart and quoting anne of green gables and flying on spaceships got enclosed somewhere in the summer i turned 11. i shut her up except in safe places during high school, and every during college, because as soon as 6th grade came around there got to be consequences for letting her out. teasing, exclusion, funny looks. she's been creeping out, i think, inch by inch, as my world gets safer or i get braver.

i have always considered myself an introvert, but that was my weekend revelation, i don't think i am anymore. i think i was just inside.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

a long view...

the title that is. this prayer, by Archbishop Oscar Romero, has been my theme for my time in seminary, well, really, my whole life. i feel like whoever chooses to begin to work for social justice has to take the attitude in this prayer, or burn out and despair are inevitable.

It helps, now and then, to step back and take a long view.

The kingdom is not only beyond our efforts,
it is even beyond our vision.

We accomplish in our lifetime only a tiny fraction
of the magnificent enterprise that is God's work.
Nothing we do is complete, which is a way of saying
that the kingdom always lies beyond us.
No statement says all that could be said.
No prayer fully expresses our faith.
No confession brings perfection.
No pastoral visit brings wholeness.
No program accomplishes the church's mission.
No set of goals and objectives includes everything.

This is what we are about.
We plant the seeds that one day will grow.
We water seeds already planted,
knowing that they hold future promise.

We lay foundations that will need further development.
We provide yeast that produces far beyond our capabilities.

We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation
in realizing that. This enables us to do something,
and to do it very well. It may be incomplete,
but it is a beginning, a step along the way,
an opportunity for the Lord's grace to enter and do the rest.

We may never see the end results, but that is the difference
between the master builder and the worker.

We are workers, not master builders; ministers, not messiahs.
We are prophets of a future not our own.

I'm a blatant copycat

...and a lemming who just follows people all over the internet. but this is the last place i'm going. don't come at me with facebook, or any other crazy new thing, THIS IS IT. (did that sound firm enough)?

and to all my friends? STOP MOVING AROUND!
(but i still love you)