Zenit News Agency - The World Seen From Rome: "The first thing to bear in mind is that marriage cannot give perfect happiness, nor can anything else here on earth. The purpose of marriage is not to give the spouses such happiness, but to mature them for it. "
I couldn't disagree more with Eve and some of her readers' beliefs that the experience of the homosexual in society is uniquely traumatic. All of the experiences cited can be equally said of the person who is tempted to the sin of pornography, masturbation, any other unusual sexual compulsion, self-mutilation, suicide, compulsive eating, etc, etc, etc. No one is really understood or perfectly loved. And in all but the exceptional case, Christians are hypocritical jerks. And we feel bad when Billy calls us a nasty name. And we feel dirty inside, and can't talk to anyone about it.
These stories of poor treatment by others, and resulting isolation, COULD mean that homosexuals have really been wounded more than other people have. Or it could mean that they are so self-absorbed that they really don't know or care about anyone else's problems but their own. Just like the other sinners about whom they complain.
If we are serious about Christ, we should rejoice that our rejection by others drives us more deeply into His arms, and recognize that no one group of people has a lock on pain. There's nothing uglier than fighting about who's closer to Christ on the cross.


Saint Barbara
Saint Barbara is praying for you! To learn more about the legend of Saint Barbara go to the Patron Saint Index at http://www.catholic-forum.com

Which Saint Would You Be?
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Zorak, hearing O.O. grunting while opening a package: "Honey, you're not a gorilla."
O.O.: "I'm a gorilla with a knife!"
Just found out that an old friend's mom just died of cancer. Please pray for the soul of Debby T. and her family.
Pornography: Because Eros is a Fun Little Game


In my not so humble opinion, you, of course, belong in the Picture of Dorian Gray, and do not try to deny it. You belong in the fashionable circles of Victorian London where exotic tastes, a double life, decadence, wit and a hypocritical belief in moral betterment make you a home. You belong where the witty apothegms of Lords, the silly moralities of matrons, the blinding high of opium, and the beauty of visual arts mingle to form one convoluted world.

Which Classic Novel do You Belong In?
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TIME.com: Decoding the Chatter -- Mar. 29, 2004
I think a relative of mine works here, or at a similar facility. He can't tell anyone in the family what he does, but we know he works in national security. And every once in a while he'll tell me something like "Stay off the metro next Thursday around 3 pm."
I thought this story, about hospice for families of anencephalic babies, was very touching. I sent it to my mom, who always uses the births of these babies as a justification for abortion, and thanked her for her love for me.

The Old Oligarch has blogged a lot recently, in regard to theological matters, about the fact that the argumentative/defensive stance of the church with regard to Protestantism has eroded the Catholic understanding of aspects of the faith that don't assist in arguments. In a similar vein, I have been thinking about how to discuss issues about which I feel passionately with people who don't agree with me, given that the "fire off an angry zinger" doesn't win many hearts.
With my mom, (with whom I've never really employed that method) I try to just share with her things that are important to me, and why - without arguing that they should be important to her too, etc. She loves to tell me all her experiences and opinions (because she's a mega-extrovert) and always wants to hear mine. So why not use her desire for intimacy as a means of sharing my efforts at truthseeking?

(Apologies for the extremely long sentences in this post.)
Nichols Trial Set to Get Underway - set to get underway? What's wrong with begins?
The Pleasures and Perils of Talking to the Media by a gent with the Society of Biblical Literature:
"I was trying to speak with appropriate critical distance about what the historian can know about the events surrounding Jesus' birth. Then, off camera, the director asked me informally what my personal view was. I commented that as a Christian I found the birth narratives inspiring and that I loved the story of the virgin birth but that speaking as an historian I suspected that Joseph was Jesus' biological father. The director then encouraged me to say this on camera; I thought about it and decided that I was happy to do so and I attempted to encapsulate it as well as I could in a one-liner. The one-liner made it into the documentary and not only there but also into various British newspapers, including the popular right wing paper the Daily Mail. In one of those gems of bizarre timing, the minister of the church I attend in Birmingham read this on the day I was taking my two daughters in for a dress rehearsal of the church nativity play (one was an angel, one was a star). He told me about the article, which I had not read, and said that he did not believe that I had said it. Through the media, my academic life had met my church life in an unexpected way. It is not that I am secretive about my views; I would happily have talked to anyone at church about my views on the virgin birth or any other issue if the occasion had presented itself. But it is in the nature of such things that occasions to discuss the virgin birth had not presented themselves, at least not in the church I attend. I regret that views my friends found problematic came out in this way. The minister has not asked me to preach again since that day."

MCI Calling Card Trauma

When I call the number at the top of my card to recharge it, I am redirected to the customer service number elsewhere on the card. When I call _that_ number, I am redirected to the number at the top of the card. When I visit the MCI website listed on the card, there is no information on my type of card (MCI 575 minutes), just a link to a website about another kind of card. I e-mailed MCI customer service, and they sent me yet another phone number to call. I called this number, and the woman said that my pin number did not have enough digits, and that she cannot recharge my card.

I think I am going to write the president of MCI.

UPDATED: I wrote the e-mail customer service people again, and they are "referring my inquiry to the appropriate department for further research." This is the dumbest thing I have ever heard. It's a rechargeable card! Recharging it should not require "2-5 days" of research!!!!!!
Highly recommended - Bigelow Green Tea with Mango.
Zorak used to have headaches ALL THE TIME. To the extent that her husband was worried about it. Then he recalled that she also cannot drink red wine because it gives her a tannin headache, and suggested that a similar phenomenon was occurring when Zorak drank her 8+ large cups of coffee. Sad as Zorak was about giving up coffee, the headaches have stopped. And recall that black tea also has lots of tannins, so this must also be avoided. But the mango tea is pretty good.

For more info try this Google search.
This does NOT make me want to use dogpile!

Happy Blogiversary.

Yesterday was my 2-year blogiversary. I thought it was four years. I have no concept of time. Underscored by the fact that I missed my blogiversary because my sleeping schedule is almost completely reversed and I did not know what day of the week it was.

My husband will be pleased to know that in his absence I made some nutritious food for myself (indian-style chicken.) Certain chocolatey foodstuffs have also been consumed, however.

Oh, great!

You are Sylvia Plath! She committed suicide by shoving her head in a gas oven. Congratulations! She was mentally troubled throughout her life, and toyed with the idea of suicide many times. She wrote brilliant and insightful poetry, although it was all autobiographical; poor sylvia had a hard time getting outside herself, and her connections with members of the opposite sex were troubled at best. She has been picked up since her death in the early sixties as a champion of the feminist cause.

Which famous poet are you? (pictures and many outcomes)
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More Great Books.
Access The Great Books. I was pleased to see they have included Eudora Welty on this list.
The Bible-UFO Connection - The purpose of this work is to present proof that the UFOs in our modern skies have been flying in those skies for the entirety of world history. The beings controlling these high tech flying vehicles are not "aliens", in the sense that they are visitors to this world, but in fact the same beings that terra formed / created the biosphere we inhabit. Human beings have recorded the presence of these beings since the dawn of time, and are more closely related to them than has been revealed by the true powers in control of the information, which forms the mainstream view of this concept.
This work does not attempt to prove God is an alien; it presents ample evidence and simple logic that the Gods have been mistaken for an alien race. We present this evidence to show mankind that there are forces on this planet, which have reason to condition mankind into believing the Earth is under threat of an alien invasion. Those forces are now manipulating mankind into a warlike and defensive posture, which will soon be refocused from the current planetary terrorist threat to an “extraterrestrial” terrorist threat, an invasion from space. The result is all humanity will unite against the returning fleet of the Christ returning to Earth to capture, and imprison those evil forces plaguing the planet. Mankind is being recruited to arm itself with massive planetary, and space based weapons to fight against a destructive alien invasion, which will actually be the returning Christ they claim to worship, and expect to save the world.
The Greatest Deception is that mankind has been falsely led to believe that the Gods could pose a threat to the very race they created. And as the deception grows the true enemy is destroying the planet's environment, and the wealth, diversity, and social structure of all global civilizations through monetary, and social control in every aspect of life. The ultimate goal is world domination by global corporate financial powers and social monitoring, with the resulting threat of planetary devastation, and eventual destruction. The ultimate eradication of all known life will be stayed only by the intervention of those beings flying in our skies, as evidenced in the writings of the world's ancient cultures. One of those ancient writings is the King James Bible, a work that could just as easily be called, "The Ultimate Guide To UFOs And Their Occupants."
"Some traditions only grow stronger."
--Aunt Jemima Complete Pancake & Waffle Mix box
Wife-Poisoner Hired as Ethics Lecturer: Medical ethics lecturer Piers Benn told Reuters criminal convictions and teaching ethics were not necessarily mutually exclusive.
"Normally people who get into moral philosophy do so because they care about making the world a better place or putting things right," said Benn, of Imperial College London.
"But I can't see any logical contradiction between being able to think about ethical questions and being able to do rather criminal acts."
USATODAY.com - Parental suicide haunts children - Arg.
Zorak: "You smell like tuna fish."
O.O.: "That's the smell of vodka and marzipan. And vermouth."
(Moments later, to himself, with German accent) "It is the smell of our flesh rotting as we die."
Telegraph | Arts | The magic of Morrissey - the fan who became a star: "How, in other words, can such a cynic be such an idealist?"
My cousin was kind enough to send along some of my grandfather's sermons that she typed up. He died more than four years ago, but he was an amazing, wonderful man who had a huge impact on the lives of his entire family, and each of us misses him a great deal and thinks of him often. One of his Lenten sermons contains the line, "On Ash Wednesday let there be in our heart both ashes and assurance."

The line is so characteristic. He loved puns, and loved the corniest, worst jokes you can imagine. The rest of the sermon is serious, but I can see him smiling with just a bit of glee as he delivers the pun. Even on Ash Wednesday, my grandfather slipped in a bit of humor.
He was a lot of fun. Let's all pray for the soul of my grandfather Henry and his wife Katherine.
Topless March is a Bust
I got a 57 on the Libertarian Purity Test, meaning: "You are a medium-core libertarian, probably self-consciously so. Your friends probably encourage you to quit talking about your views so much." Via Fr. Jim.
BlogPulse [BETA]: Automated Trend Discovery for Weblogs
Industry Players Predict Search's Future: Carrying personalization to the nth degree, Craig Silverstein of Google said, 'The future of search will involve genetically engineered search pets that will understand human emotions -- not just facts, but how people work.'
For example, Silverstein said, 'Your significant other looks sad. You say, 'What's wrong, honey?' Honey says, 'Nothing.' Now you know two things. First: there is an answer, and second: 'Nothing' isn't it. Search pets would hopefully know you and your family and help with the answer.'
Today I got a spam e-mail from one "Scapulas H. Legitimate."
O.O., on allergy season: "My skin is itching, my nose is itching, and I'm molting."
Yahoo! News - Royal Genes May Win Kerry the White House
The Onion | New Nietzschean Diet Lets You Eat Whatever You Fear Most: "Kansas City's John Mencken started the diet in January. He lost 35 pounds, eight inches from his waistline, and many of his slave moralities."
Yahoo! News - "The Family Guy" Coming Back - not really my thing, but I know some of you love it.
Neat Biblical Resources
Got a hit for "intrinsically motivated labor unions." Sure, unions are intrinsically motivated - but not, you know, to WORK or anything.
Drunken Polish nun crashes her tractor
WorldNetDaily: Pig billboard: 'He died for your sins': PETA ad to go up before Easter meant to generate compassion for animals
O.O. mentioned the story of Marilyn Manson ending his concert in anger over a giant smiley-face placed on a "pulpit" stage prop. Here's the story.