Monday, September 24, 2007

It should be easy for a man who's strong. . .

My friend Audrey is a bitchin' photographer and she took these pictures of me in my old kitchen the day before I moved. These are taken on REAL FILM like the dinosaurs used to use! You can tell because, in the second photo just like Cindy Crawford my beauty mark is on the other side. Unlike Cindy Crawford, I had mine put into my face by 400-pound sadist at Mom's Body Shop on Haight street.

Her web address is: (the hyperlink thing isn't working, sorry)

If you get the allusion in the title of this post, post it in the comments and I'll mail you something cool.

Hypocrite Lecteur! --mon semblable,--mon frére!

So my brother, whose blog I'm copying, really, posted today about right-wingers who are afraid of all the "godless pinko commies" in higher education. The post is here:

My brother just finished his doctorate in Spanish Literature and right now he's scraping out a living as an Assistant Professor in some god-forsaken (or infested, depending on how you look at it) town in rural South Carolina where you have to drive 17 miles to go to a Shoney's. His male students are athletes and his female students were heavily influenced by the Spice Girls and Paris Hilton...and not ironically ("Whaaat?"). Let's generalize, shall we?

For those of you who just landed, I used to be Mormon. My brother, despite his high level of intelligence, still is (comments are welcome!). Unlike me, my brother was not the hairshirt-wearing-fascist-masochist-type Mormon that I was [see footnote 1]. He swore, he watched rated "R" movies, he skipped church sometimes, and he didn't tape moments of silence over the swear words in his Pearl Jam records. This, and the inherent patriarchy of the church (really, comments are welcome!) are, in my opinion, why he's still Elder Williams and I'm drinking coffee and beer MIXED TOGETHER. [Please see footnote 2].

Mac's post is interesting because he describes the epiphany he had on his mission where he realized that, although he thought he wasn't judging people, he was, and that there are a variety of ways to be ethical and moral in the world. One testament to his character and his intelligence (take note, there are only about four) is that, on his mission, he questioned whether or not the way he had chosen was best. That's pretty damn brave of him.

The point of his post is that if one has a set of values, or teaches one's children a set of values, those values are weak if one cannot participate in the world. In other words, conservative Christians who seek to isolate their children because they're afraid of the "bad" influence of society are really insecure about their values to begin with. I agree...BUT if I had a daughter reared on Our Bodies, Ourselves and whole grains, I'd fear for her safety if I put her in public school in Cherokee County, Georgia.

Our Mom and Dad (or Mama and Daddy, depending on how much I miss them) were big into values and ethics and morals. If our domestic scene were a play, the overall tone would be "self-righteous." And this was the case even before we converted. I believe part of the reason my Dad took so well to Mormonism [see footnote 3] was because of the impeccable moral structure [see footnote 4] and clear, well-defined codes of what is right and wrong. It's like the Jenny Craig diet where they give you all the food and help you along and, like the Jenny Craig diet, IT WORKS! I'm not being a sarcastic asshole here; if one wants to "get religion" (i.e. find purpose in one's life) and, especially, if one wants to orient one's life around the family, the Mormon church is excellent.

I agree with my brother. I agree that there are a variety of ways to live morally in the world. One of these, as shown especially well by my brother, is the Mormon church. Another one is showing kindness toward your friends by following this recipe:

* One pint Guinness Lager
* One shot espresso
* One scoop chocolate ice cream

Blend. Pour into a pint glass. Serve on tray with a Nat Sherman and a copy of The Delta of Venus. It takes all kinds.

* * *

[Footnote 1] Hairshirt: "A garment of rough cloth made from goats' hair and worn in the form of a shirt or as a girdle around the loins, by way of mortification and penance."

[Footnote 2] I should say here that our family converted to the church, staggeringly, between 1990-1994. I hold that those who were raised Mormon have different reasons for staying/leaving (such as, oh, belief). If you don't think I respect that, please reread this post.

[Footnote 3] I'm writing for the non-LDS person here. Mormons don't call themselves "Mormons." They call themselves "LDS," which is short for "Latter-day Saint" which comes from the name of the church: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

[Footnote 4] A definite case can be made against an "impeccable moral structure" in the church if one looks at the church's historical relationship (as opposed to its present-day one) with African-Americans. Also, one could argue that the church privileges men. However, one can also argue that church doctrine itself (as opposed to the people in the church) is not sexist and, in fact, privileges women. I'm on the slightly-disturbed-about-everything-concerning-Brigham-Young bandwagon (comments welcome!). Also, several people I know would never call anyone who knocks at their door wanting to convert them "moral." I don't agree or disagree.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Top Ten Ways to Avoid Doing Homework

1. Blog-posting
2. Taking really long showers (exfoliating, deep-conditioning, etc.)
3. Staring at the ocean and trying to count how many baby seals are in the water
4. Daydreaming about the raccoon that got into my apartment and how Theo defended us
5. Daydreaming about all the witty things I could say in class
6. Daydreaming about how someone would look with a pompadour
8. Calling my grandpa or my Mama
9. Walking to the post office and listening to the one Neil Young song I own
10. Vacuuming in between the tiles with the hand-vacuum

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Rambo Takes the Stairs

My favorite things about my new house in Moss Beach:

* Naked everything.
* I can leave shit everywhere.
* Cell phone reception is spotty.
* Theo climbs trees like a little badass.
* No sirens or car alarms or neighbors yelling.
* Local produce stands.
* AMAZING playground within walking distance with adult size swings.
* This morning I heard a man at the post office with a little puff puff Pomeranian tell his neighbor, "We always take the stairs cause Rambo is a macho man!"

My least favorite things:

* Recycling has to be separated and boxes must be broken down and tied with twine
* Population 400: Grocery store? No. Hardware store? No. Pharmacy? No. Mormon church branch!?!? YES!
* There's shit all over my apartment!
* Celery hearts cost $3.50 at the Safeway in Half Moon Bay.
* Rambo's owner was confused as to why I was laughing so hard.

Other than Rambo: Macho Pomeranian, this is my other favorite story:

Sunday I went to Farmer's Daughter, a local produce stand. I asked the older lady there if there was a health food store around anywhere because Safeway does not sell Strauss yogurt, which further proves their connections with the dark forces on the earth. After I paid she leaned in and said:

"Can I ask you a personal question?"
I nodded
"Do you have a college degree?"

What a nice personal question! I'm used to hearing, "did that hurt?" (referring to my lip piercing). I told her I did have a degree and she tried to recruit me for the "very active" Moss Beach chapter of the American Association of University Women.

I AM SO a University Woman! Hayyy!

(I didn't take this picture)