Thursday, July 30, 2009

Desert Storm

I have mentioned before that I was writing a story. I finally finished it awhile ago. I've been correcting and re-writing since, and last week I sent it in to the publisher that published a book by my father. They want to publish it!

I just have to send the final copy in by September 1, and I have to find a new title for the book. Desert Storm is already taken.

I am currently brainstorming and have come up with a few tentative titles:

The High Road
Hope Sang
The Merchant's Daughter
The Passage
Hope Whispers


Still brainstorming though.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Sniglets

From the site Bert Christensen'sTruth & Humour Collection:
A sniglet is a word that should be in the dictionary but isn't. Sniglets are the brainchild of comedian Rich Hall who, with a little help from his friends, wrote a series of books containing sniglets in the mid-eighties. While Rich Hall invented the word "sniglet" itself, sniglets are actually a long-running popular joke in which people make up their own humorous words to define things or concepts that have no "official" definitions. More information can be found at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sniglet
Here are a few of my favourites, some of these had me in stitches:

Backspackle (bak' spak uhl) - n. Markings on the back of one's shirt from riding a fenderless bicycle.

Bargue (bar' gyoo) - v. To whine, fuss, and complain a great deal while at the same time trying to get someone to see your point of view. Ex: The young child bargued with his father until his father gave in and let him stay up past his bedtime

Beelzebug (n.): Satan in the form of a mosquito that gets into your bedroom at 3 in the morning and cannot be cast out

Bugpedal (bug' ped uhl) - v. To accelerate or decelerate rapidly in an attempt to remove a clinging insect from a car's windshield.

Caterpallor (n.): The color you turn after finding half a grub in the fruit you're eating.

Darf (darf) - n. The least attractive side of a Christmas tree that ends up facing the wall

Detruncus (de trunk' us) - n. The embarrassing phenomenon of losing one's bathing shorts while diving into a swimming pool

Gimplexus (gim plek' sis) - n. Rear area of thighs, which must be peeled from car seat on hot summer days

Lotshock (laht' shahk) - n. The act of parking your car, walking away, and then watching it roll past you.

Mustgo - n. Any item of food that has been sitting in the refrigerator so long it has become a science project.

Negatile (neh' guh tyl) - n. An area of the bathroom floor where, somehow, the scale registers you five pounds lighter

Pediquerey (pehd' eh kweer ee) - n. The continuation of one's child to ask "why?" no matter what the answer to the last "why?", commonly asked about a subject that does not matter

Phonesia (fo nee' zhuh) - n. The affliction of dialing a phone number and forgetting whom you were calling just as they answer

Anaception (an a sep' shun) - n. The body's ability to actually affect television reception by moving about the room

Snacktrek - n. The peculiar habit, when searching for a snack, of constantly returning to the refrigerator in hopes that something new will have materialized

Vacation Elbow (vay kay' shun el' bo) - n. A condition that suddenly develops in a father's arm during a vacation trip that allowed him to reach out and slap you from incredible distances

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Forrest Gump goes to Heaven

The day finally arrived.Forrest Gump dies and goes to Heaven. He is at the Pearly Gates, met by St. Peter himself. However, the gates are closed, and Forrest approaches the gatekeeper.

St. Peter said, 'Well, Forrest, it is certainly good to see you. We have heard a lot about you. I must tell you, though, that the place is filling up fast, and we have been administering an entrance examination for everyone. The test is short, but you have to pass it before you can get into Heaven.'

Forrest responds, 'It sure is good to be here, St. Peter, sir. But, nobody ever told me about any entrance exam. I sure hope that the test ain't too hard. Life was a big enough test as it was.'

St. Peter continued, 'Yes, I know, Forrest, but the test is only three questions.

First: What two days of the week begin with the letter T?
Second: How many seconds are there in a year?
Third: What is God's first name?'

Forrest leaves to think the questions over. He returns the next day and sees St. Peter, who waves him up, and says, 'Now that you have had a chance to think the questions over, tell me your answers'

Forrest replied, 'Well, the first one -- which two days in the week begins with the letter 'T'? Shucks, that one is easy. That would be Today and Tomorrow.'

The Saint's eyes opened wide and he exclaimed, 'Forrest, that is not what I was thinking, but you do have a point, and I guess I did not specify, so I will give you credit for that answer.' 'How about the next one?' asked St. Peter 'How many seconds in a year?

Now that one is harder,' replied Forrest, but I thunk and thunk about that, and I guess the only answer can be twelve.' Astounded, St. Peter said, 'Twelve? Twelve? Forrest, how in Heaven's name could you come up with twelve seconds in a year?'

Forrest replied,'Shucks, there's got to be twelve: January 2nd, February 2nd, March 2nd ...

''Hold it,' interrupts St. Peter. 'I see where you are going with this, and I see your point, though that was not quite what I had in mind ... but I will have to give you credit for that one, too. Let us go on with the third and final question. Can you tell me God's first name'?

'Sure,' Forrest replied, 'it's Andy.''Andy?' exclaimed an exasperated and frustrated St Peter. 'Ok, I can understand how you came up with your answers to my first two questions, but just how in the world did you come up with the name Andy as the first name of God?'

'Shucks, that was the easiest one of all,' Forrest replied. 'I learnt it from the song, 'ANDY WALKS WITH ME, ANDY TALKS WITH ME, ANDY TELLS ME I AM HIS OWN.'

'St. Peter opened the Pearly Gates, and said:'Run Forrest, run!'

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

In training...


Perhaps this is partly what St. Paul had in mind when he compared athletes training to win a prize to christians struggling to follow Christ?

Everytime I walk into this particular church for Sunday mass, the same man walks over to me after mass and says exactly the same thing.

"Ça doit être du sport hein? 5 enfants?" And then he repeats it, like I didn't hear the first time. "Perhaps he thinks I didn't, because mostly I now just half-smile, nod and keep walking. I get tired of this constant reminding me of a person's incedulity that I deal with 5 children. I've talked to him before, and I've told him it's not that bad, or I've told him they aren't all the same age, and the older one is obviously more of a help than a hindrance. My second one helps out quite a bit too, at home.

This has been ongoing for years, now, the only think he can think to say is the same thing, to translate litterally: it must be some sport having 5 kids. In other words, a lot of work, a lot of running around, a lot of effort. You would think that, by now, he could come up with something else to say. I see him coming and I cringe.

Everybody has something in life that they have to deal with. Whether it is an overbearing, demanding boss, quickly coming deadlines, or a bunch of active kids, there is always something. Quite frankly, I prefer the kids to the demanding boss.

Besides, I am no stranger to sport, I was on practically every sports team my highschool had. I played both basketball and volleyball through university and biked everywhere. I used to run with the YMCA in Prince George, and I've taken up soccer here. I like sports!!!

I actually enjoy the tumultous lifestyle I live, the running after kids, the driving them to soccer games and practices, the coordinating it all when 3 or 4 of us have soccer on the same night. The more challenging it gets to coordinate it all, the more fun it is! Things are never boring at my house, there is always something going on.

Of course, I don't enjoy everything about being a mother/housewife, and sometimes I get tired, but in general, I thrive on it. This is what I was meant to do. It's what I've always wanted, to be a mother.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Well this is ridiculous

I don't know what these people are complaining about, the guy seems perfectly fine to me... You see, I have no problem with gay people, only those who are out to "shock the world" so to speak. (See previous article I posted).

Peterborough Bishop Subject of Human Rights Complaint

Peterborough Bishop Nicola De Angelis and 12 parishioners at St. Michael’s parish in Cobourg, Ont., face an Ontario Human Rights Commission complaint that could cost the parishioners $20,000 each and the diocese of Peterborough $25,000 plus legal fees. Jim Corcoran brought the complaint after he was asked to give up his position as an altar server at Sunday Masses.

Corcoran was dismissed from all duties on the altar after 12 parishioners wrote a letter to De Angelis questioning the presence of a gay man serving at the altar of St. Michael’s. “There are laws in Ontario,” Corcoran told The Catholic Register. “Those laws say that it is unlawful to discriminate against people for a number of reasons, one of which is sexual orientation.”

“There’s no evidence at all to suggest that we were trying to be discriminatory or that we have some sort of distaste for people of same-sex orientation, or any of this,” said Gerry Lawless, one of the 12 who complained to De Angelis about Corcoran’s presence on the altar. De Angelis has forwarded a copy of the complaint and the parishioners’ letter to his lawyer. De Angelis and the 12 parishioners have until July 28 to respond to Corcoran’s complaint.

Both sides have opted for mediation. Sixty-five to 70 per cent of Ontario Human Rights Commission complaints are resolved through mediation, avoiding the tribunal process. Only if mediation is unsuccessful will the complaint go on to a tribunal hearing. Corcoran claims the 12 parishioners have misinterpreted entries on his blog ( http://steannes.blogspot.com/ ) to draw false conclusions about him.

“I’m a chaste homosexual and practise my faith,” he said. While Corcoran does live with another gay man, they are devout Catholics who refrain from sexual activity in accordance with church teaching, he said. “Unless I’m actively flaunting my sexual preference in the Catholic Church to recruit other homosexuals or to promote homosexuality — I can see how people might take offence to that and how that might fly in the face of what the Pope is trying to do in terms of the priesthood — but just serving on the altar as a man?” said Corcoran.

By complaining to De Angelis about Corcoran the 12 parishioners had intended to express their unhappiness with St. Michael’s pastor Fr. Allan Hood, said Reg Ward, one of the authors of the letter to De Angelis. They blamed Hood for inviting Corcoran and his roommate to become altar servers. “It was just one more way of Fr. Hood saying he’s boss and to hell with everybody else, like what the church is saying and everybody else,” said Ward.

Hood refused to speak with The Catholic Register on the record, citing diocesan policy against priests speaking to the media. Ward and Lawless have written a series of letters to De Angelis complaining about Hood since he was appointed to St. Michael’s in July 2008. Ward claims the dissatisfaction with Hood runs deeper than just 12 parishioners in one of the Peterborough diocese’s larger parishes.

“Dorothy (Ward’s wife) and I know personally 25 or 30 who have left the church, are going to church elsewhere,” Ward said. “We know some of them who aren’t going to church at all.”

For Corcoran, his time as head altar server prior to Easter was spiritually enriching. “For me spiritually, in terms of my spiritual development, I was just full of joy come Easter Sunday. Holy Thursday, I’ve never been so moved,” he said.

While Corcoran did have a brief conversation with De Angelis about the decision to remove him from the altar, he has not spoken to any of the 12 who complained about his presence. The 12 parishioners did not consider speaking directly with Corcoran before complaining to De Angelis, said Lawless.

“We were simply responding to the situation. We didn’t know exactly what was the policy, or anything. We weren’t in a position to talk to him,” he said.

Corcoran said De Angelis urged him to take his dismissal from the altar in the spirit of Paul’s advice to the Romans on the issue of meat sacrificed to idols (Romans 14:13-23) — refraining from scandal. Instead the bishop should have confronted the 12 parishioners and their prejudice, as well as their attempts to get rid of their pastor, Corcoran said.

“This is a man (De Angelis) who needs some help in understanding how to deal with confrontation in his diocese. The Human Rights Commission helps people do that,” he said.

The monetary penalties aren’t the major issue, according to Corcoran, who employs 150 people as owner of St. Anne’s Spa in Grafton, Ont. “I’m not in it for the money, but I think that if there weren’t some penalties then these people wouldn’t take it seriously,” he said. “I just think that the bishop has to make things right in this diocese. He has to stand up for his priests, and he has to stand up for all his parishioners.”

“We have not discriminated. We have simply asked the bishop to act on a situation which we had been informed on very good authority was in violation of church policy,” said Lawless. The 12 will seek a dismissal of the complaint, he said.

The Jacob Plan


Friday of the Fourteenth week in Ordinary Time
Book of Genesis 46:1-7.28-30.

Israel set out with all that was his. When he arrived at Beer-sheba, he offered sacrifices to the God of his father Isaac. There God, speaking to Israel in a vision by night, called, "Jacob! Jacob!" "Here I am," he answered. Then he said: "I am God, the God of your father. Do not be afraid to go down to Egypt, for there I will make you a great nation. Not only will I go down to Egypt with you; I will also bring you back here, after Joseph has closed your eyes." So Jacob departed from Beer-sheba, and the sons of Israel put their father and their wives and children on the wagons that Pharaoh had sent for his transport. They took with them their livestock and the possessions they had acquired in the land of Canaan. Thus Jacob and all his descendants migrated to Egypt. His sons and his grandsons, his daughters and his granddaughters--all his descendants--he took with him to Egypt. Israel had sent Judah ahead to Joseph, so that he might meet him in Goshen. On his arrival in the region of Goshen, Joseph hitched the horses to his chariot and rode to meet his father Israel in Goshen. As soon as he saw him, he flung himself on his neck and wept a long time in his arms. And Israel said to Joseph, "At last I can die, now that I have seen for myself that Joseph is still alive."

Just a thought...

Antarctica is still free right? No country owns it? (No country wants to own it?) What if all us populating Catholics just moved there and started our own country? If we have enough kids, following Jacob's example, in just a few generations, we'd have a fairly good-sized nation...

Hmmmm...

What would we do with $400 000

http://arpacanada.ca/index.php/action-items/current-action-requests/636-what-would-we-do-with-400000

What if a group of people decided to walk down the streets, semi-nude or even completely nude and started to engage in public sex acts, mutual masturbation, sensuality, etc. and called it the heterosexual pride parade? Would we get away with it? There's something wrong with the world when only one specific group of people can get away with criminal acts and noone can touch them. Equal rights for everyone right?

Let's be honest here, call it what it is: gay XXX parade. You know what? Go ahead and have your gay pride parade, but do you think you could make it something that, like any other parade or march or demonstration, if unsuspecting people happen across it, they don't have to do an about-face, cover the eyes of their children, or even leave their homes for the day because the parade goes past them? You want to have sex, keep it at home like the rest of the world does.

This article makes a very good point:
Christians get blamed for wanting to impose our morality on the general public by applying our faith to politics. How does this government-funded homosexual festival not impose a morality of its own? The question is not whether a government will impose a morality. The question is which morality will it be?
The article also makes another very good point:

Of course the point is not that we want $400,000 for causes that we believe in. The federal government should stop pretending to be a giant philanthropist and allow citizens to pay less taxes so individuals can put more money towards the things that we believe are worth supporting.
I agree. If the government stopped funding all kinds of things, we would save a lot on taxes, and then we in turn could choose to make donations towards the things we want to support. I'm all for paying less taxes, and choosing what I want to donate money for.

Besides, this parade is a political demonstration. Why is the government funding political demonstrations in the first place? Does it give $400 000 to the March for life? You could argue that this is gay culture and that the government funds cultural events, but XXX-rated things are not something that can honestly be shared with the general public and therefore should not be funded by the general public either.

Technically, you could also argue that the March for life is a demonstration of the culture of life. We do use that term quite often. With a few pictures here and there of mangled babies on poster boards, you might not be able to rate it G, but with a rating of PG 13 or even PG 16 it's still much better than XXX.

I wonder if we could organize a pro-life pride parade through the streets of Toronto, dress up in foetus costumes or pregant lady costumes or pose as physically/mentally handicapped people (one of the most targeted group for abortions), celebrate life and receive $400 000 to do it? Hmmmm... unlikely.

Bored? Have Another Kid...


Ha ha ha... I have five of them, and I certainly do not have this problem... so, in theory, this plan works!

Monday, July 06, 2009

Not always what they seem

Yesterday, as the sun's rays were angling down, and the day wasn't so hot anymore, I found myself alone, still cleaning the van, as I'd been doing for, oh, the past two hours. The adolescent who didn't want to cooperate was asleep in his bed, the daughter was with a friend, and the husband had just woken up to go fishing with the boys.

Yes, you read right. I was washing the car, while the husband was sleeping and fishing.

Now let me explain why there is nothing wrong with this picture.

The husband spent the whole night working on some project they had him working on at the Yellow Pages. Then he sort of dosed for an hour and a half before the second son's third soccer game of a tournament he was in. The husband is the team manager, so he has to be around to take care of certain things. We got back at around 2:30 or 3:00, and the husband went straight to bed.

The husband got up to go fishing because the second son really wanted to go. Not because he really felt like it at the moment. He was doing it for his son's pleasure.

I actually don't mind cleaning out the car. I put the radio on, and I get to think, it's mindless work, so I can think all I want. Plus I got the van clean the way I wanted it. No half-job there.

The husband left with the two youngest.

Let me repeat that so it is clear. The husband left with the two youngest. (Fanfare/applause/drumroll)

I was almost done. I took the daughter and her friend out for ice-cream all by ourselves when we were done. There is nothing better than eating ice-cream on a cool evening after a hot day, especially when you are already feeling good about a job well done.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Twilight - Review from Mercator

Read the review here:

It's worth reading, although I personally don't agree 100% with everything that is said and have a few comments of my own.

Bella is plain, clumsy and prone to accidents, but having recently moved to rainy Forks she enjoys popularity as the new girl. She has no real friends -- none that she spends unforced time with. She has a shallow relationship with her father, Charlie, whom she “hates lying to” even though she does so frequently since, “for his own good”, he remains ignorant about vampires. While Edward is always telling Bella how selfless she is, she never does anything to support the theory. All she wants is for him to make her a vampire so that she can be breathless in his presence 24/7 for all eternity.
In the unlikely event that any of my children came across mythical creatures and had to keep their existance a secret, even from me, "for my own good", or in this case, for their own good as well, this is not an idea that really bothers me. We find out later that keeping the secret from the humans is the only rule that vampires must abide by. Edward has broken this rule, and let Bella live even though she knows about him. The judgement by the ruling vampire family is either she be changed into a vampire or she dies. (And if Edward does not kill her or change her himself, the leading vampire will take care of the job for him. With the special abilities of their guard, there is no getting away from them, as we find out in later books.) By keeping the information from Charlie, she is protecting not only her vampire friends, but him from the same fate in the end.

As a teenager, I did not necessarily tell my parents everything that was going around me. As an adult, I still do not tell my parents everything that goes on in my life. Bella is 17. In some cultures, that is already an adult. I highly doubt that Lucy, Edmund, Susan and Peter went about flaunting their adventures in Narnia either, for the simple reason that they'd have been put in a mental insitution. But then again, time stands still on earth while they are gone, so what do they have to explain, except for maybe a few missing or unintact clothes? Even then, that seems to be magically resolved as they are returned at the end through the wardrobe and emerge as young children again in the same clothes in which they had originally gone through years/minutes before.

That Bella has no real friends that she spends unforced time with is not something that really bothers me either. Except for Angela, most of the teenagers seem concerned with very superficial things, and Bella is not. She doesn't have much in common with any of them, and quite frankly, neither would I. At her age, I probably spent more time talking with my teachers than with my peers as well, for much the same reasons.

I do not remember Edward telling Bella how selfless she is so much as that she does not realize her own worth. He enjoys being with her because of who she is, because they share a lot of common interests, not just because of the whole "breathless" thing. She on the on the other hand regards herself as plain and uninteresting while he is beautiful and amazing.

No need to be beautiful, just hide behind a pretty name and you can still manage to attract the most perfect guy in existence -- it’s a teenage girl’s dream.
Ummm, I think it was a little more than just having a pretty name that attracted the "most perfect" guy in existence. Also, I'm not so sure he's the most perfect guy. Give Jacob a course on Theology of the Body, and I probably personally would have preferred his type to an Edward type. But this is not my story, it's Bella's.

Jacob Black is a 16-year-old werewolf, mortal enemy of vampires. His declaration of love for Bella turns the romance into a love triangle.
Which kind of contradicts the whole "I can't live without you" idea. (More below on that idea.)The book tells us this kind of love is so strong you can't really live without the other person, and yet it also says that there could be other people out there, just as good for you.

In the midst of all this sensuality the sudden appearance of restraint seems incongruous -- if not dishonest. “Virtue” turns out to be simply a line that can’t be crossed. Keep a sheet between you and it is all OK. But who could go that far and maintain real virtue? Sounds like a recipe for a lot of baby Junos with jaded teenage mums.
This I wholeheartedly agree with. I cannot see anyone having the kind of restraint that Edward has in these 4 books. In real life, something would have happened long before they finally got married. You simply cannot have that kind of attraction for someone and let yourself go that far in private places or in your bedroom.

I do like the fact that Eward is worried about virtue, and wants to protect both his and Bella's, but then virtue is neither explained, nor is his desire to protect it elaborated on. We only know that he struggles with wondering whether he has a soul or not, and wanting to go to Heaven if it exists for him. We learn nothing about why virtue is worth saving in the immediate, right here, on earth. It also would have been nice if it weren't so one-sided, if, in the end, Edward explained his reasons, and Bella understood and wanted the same thing. A little Theology of the Body wouldn't have hurt here. And a little reality too, as in they decide to try to stay away from places where temptation would be stronger.

Meyer seems to think a “thou shalt not” ethic is a soul’s ticket to heaven: “Most religions believe there are some rules to follow,” says Edward piously. Rules. What a contrast to the message of Pope John Paul II’s “theology of the body”, which understands sex, relationships and affectivity as wonderful dimensions of human life, to be guarded and affirmed, not simply out of a fear of hell but to enable human beings to reach their full potential in a free and total gift of self.

There are serious consequences for marriage. It is presented as a commitment based on this intense feeling of desire, when a person is so essential to your happiness that you can’t live without them. I’m not sure that many marriages would last long with that premise.
No, I think they would not. As an adult, I read this story as a way to escape. I don't actually believe in love like that. This is one of those things that would be worth discussing with the teenagers. Love is something you choose, something you do, not something that happens to you. It's actually a lot of work, and it isn't always all pleasant.

Bella actually takes her punishment maturely when she is grounded for running off, and unable to explain why she left in the first place (to try to save Edward). Also, even in the midst of depression, she manages to cook, clean house, do the laundry, and keep up her grades. How many teenagers do all that when they aren't depressed? She does all this without being asked to. I don't even keep up with all the cooking, housecleaning and laundry and I am 36. ( I think? I can't remember any more.) Also, Jacob finds a way to let Charlie know in the end without telling him what exactly, that supernatural things are involved. Charlie's involvement in the supernatural world is on a "need to know" basis only, and permits him to see his daughter and granddaughter, without actually having to know what they are.

There is a lot more to these books than just sensuality, even though there is enough of that. Which is why they are ever so much better than your ordinary Harlequinn Romance.

For plot, theology, real love and reality, there are better books out there. I read this one for the way it made me feel. Sometimes, it's just nice to escape reality.