Friday, June 27, 2008


So, here's the disclaimer first: I'm not Catholic. I was raised a lefty Protestant, in a liberal United Church of Christ congregation.

Nevertheless, I've studied enough Christian theology to know what I'm talking about.

My thought for the evening involves the way that the Catholic Church has become, either through laziness or accident, a two-note body. At least in the United States, the only time that the Catholic Church is mentioned is in terms of abortion or gay marriage. (Additional disclaimer: I'm pro-choice and a fan of gay marriage.) The Catholics used to be involved in other issues of social justice, like poverty and economic inequality (see the Catholic Worker Movement and liberation theology). Perhaps they still are and I just don't know about it. But if I, who pays particular attention to both current events and religion, don't know about it, who else does?

Far, far more children are in poverty than there are gays who want to get married. The cycle of poverty makes women feel that they have no other option than to have an abortion! Do we not see the connections here? Instead of worrying about which American politicians should be denied Communion because they're pro-choice, couldn't they worry about that instead?

Dunno. Maybe I'm just missing some critical information somewhere. Perhaps this is a top of the heap vs. grassroots issue. But also considering the hierarchical nature of the Catholic Church, it doesn't seem that it would be possible to be different at the top vs. the bottom. It's not like self-governed UCC churches.


Don't need, but really really neat. (Why the sudden fascination with photography? No idea. But I figure if I've been taking really crappy out-of-focus photos already, I might as well make them intentionally "interesting.")

Anyways, here's what I want: the Holga. (also the Fisheye lens to go with it.)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

10 Famous Americans

Well, once again, a friend has pointed me in the direction of something interesting. She's partial to the Washington Post, where I'm partial to the NYT. This article comments on a study done by professors at the University of Maryland and Stanford which asked students to make a list of the 10 most famous Americans, a list non-gender specific, and a list of women.

(As a commentary on the list of women thing, that's common in women's studies classes, to point out that most of the women that people know from "American history" and people will be unable to come up with 10 women and will put people on like "Aunt Jemima." I'll find a citation for that one at some point...)

I had difficulty coming up with a list of 10, somewhat because I haven't studied American history for a while and somewhat because I don't tend to think about American history in terms of individual people. I tend to think of it in terms of broad movements.

Or maybe I'm just full of it. Regardless, I'll be using the exercise when I start classes in the fall, since it's interesting, no matter what the answers are.

Cute & Funny

From Slate: the latest in a series of pieces from a guy who farms in upstate New York.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Trip to Seattle

I got back on Monday from my family trip to Seattle. Lots and lots of fun. A few photos for your enjoyment. The Pike Place Market sign (very iconic), flowers being sold at the Market, and photos of Snoqualmie Falls, where I went with my family on Monday. Gorgeous.

The weather there was beautiful. I have a good understanding of the weather in Seattle, and I get that it's not always that nice, but man, this was good. It's definitely a place that will be on my list when I decide to leave Maryland.

Flying back and forth across the country can be a little bit less than fun. I hopped across on the way out -- from Baltimore to Kansas City to Denver to Seattle. The flight home was direct, but a red eye, which sort of canceled out the fun of it being direct.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


On the trend of establishing women's colleges in developing countries. The history teacher in me likes the parallel between the establishment of women's colleges in the 19th century in the US and developing countries today. MHC and other women's colleges are acting as mentors to newly established colleges and universities overseas. There is an international bond between women's college students and graduates no matter which one they attended.

New to Me

New Blogs (to me):

Indexed. Post that I particularly like here.

. A few that I like here and here.


So, my friend Sarah wrote a post here about her feelings concerning feminism, Hillary, and her mom. You should read it, because it's interesting. In addition, I totally agree with her about having conflicted feelings regarding voting for Hillary and the fact that she has dropped out of the race.

There was an interesting article, along those same lines, about the characteristics of the next female candidate, and the assurance that there will be one, and it won't be another 200 years before the next one. From Slate.

Slate has had a series of interesting articles discussing feminism, the rift because of Hillary, how to smooth things over, etc. Sarah did a nice job rounding these and others up, so I won't recap here. Newest:
- advice to Obama on how to reject Hillary as VP
- the death of feminism is "greatly exaggerated"

Sunday, June 8, 2008

The End is Nigh.

The end of school, not the apocalypse. I find myself unable to concentrate on ANYTHING, not a trashy novel, not the internet, not the last few days of class. I can only think about my impending trip to Seattle to visit with a friend and my incredibly complicated extended family. I will be seeing people (cousin, brother, sister, nieces & nephew) who I haven't seen for many many many years or have never met at all. I swear, my family is complicated-novel-/movie-worthy.

Excited is a good word and so is nervous.

Saturday, June 7, 2008


From "Salon," an interview with the author of Bottlemania about bottled water. Fascinating, especially since I've been trying to figure out what to do with my mini-collection of old-school Nalgene bottles, now that the plastic has been declared dangerous. I'll probably continue to ignore the issue for a while, but eventually buy a new bottle made out of something safer. But I hardly ever buy bottled and I can apparently be glad about that.

4 days of school left.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Rock on

Pleasing things for the day:
1. Singing at graduation on Saturday, with the kids. I feel like singing and it makes me want to sing next year.

2. Getting an appointment for an eye exam an hour after I called. I dropped one of my last pair of contact lenses in the bathroom sink drain last night. I have new contacts, yay!

Monday, June 2, 2008

$10 Malaria Nets

From the NYT:

* raising money to purchase mosquito nets

* the struggles of college alumni magazines -- the article comments that Stanford grads get "targeted" mags with only notes from classes in their age range. No! I love reading about the old alums!

Sunday, June 1, 2008


So, we are back to regular-type posting, post cancer-scare and associated self-absorbed state. Phew.

First up, the election. I majored in Women's Studies, went to a women's college, agonized over whom to vote for in my state's primary. I think the idea of a woman in the White House is excellent. And quite frankly, I'm shocked that I saw both a woman and a person of color running with good chances of the nomination in question. However, it's time for Senator Clinton to give it up. She's too far behind. Women will get to the White House, to the presidency. This year is not the year.

Second, the end of school is within sight. 9 days left and I'm so incredibly excited. Or I would be if I wasn't so tired. Not that I know what I'm doing with the freshmen during the last 3-4 days, but eh. I have 4 days to figure it out.

Third, the NYT (you knew it was coming, right?) had a feature today on 31 Places to Go This Summer. New Hampshire is #2, the Chesapeake Bay is #10, the San Juan Islands are #14, and the Pacific Northwest is #27. One that I really, really, really want to do at some point (perhaps next summer if there isn't an alumnae choral tour) is #15, the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. Who wants to go with?