Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Jon Stewart: True Patriot

Oh, Jon Stewart, you seem to be begging for the Golden Ruler Award! And you deserve it!!

If you didn't see last night's Daily Show where Jon Stewart interviewed John McCain, go see it now, in two parts: Part I and Part II.

Jon Stewart's words of great measure:

"Is it part of the insurgency, and isn't this part of the difficulty that we have to win over the Iraqi people and can we win them over when we seem to almost consistently diminish their suffering. Rumsfeld has said 'when you fly over Baghdad the whole place isn't on fire.' Condi Rice has said that this is birthing pangs. You know, think of how we're grieving for (the deaths at Virginia Tech), and rightfully so... (disrupted thought about mismanaged war) But even the mindset... (again disrupted thought win/loss militarily or politically) But don't you think we already won militarily? (disrupted) Can we describe this as won or lost? Even the president said this isn't the kind of war you win and people surrender on a battleship. Shouldn't we get away from the language of win or lose in Iraq and get more to a descriptive success, a metrics, deadlines, if you will, timetables."

"They're fighting each other. We're there keeping them from killing each other. Surrender is not--We're not surrendering to an enemy that has defeated us, we're saying how do you quell a civil war when it's not your country?"

(In reply to McCain's audience comment "I think I know who's side they're on.") "They're on America's side because they're patriots."

"If the architects that built a house without any doors or windows don't admit that's the house they built, and continue to say it's your fault for not being able to see into it, then I don't understand how we're supposed to move forward."

"What I believe is less supportive to the good people who believe they're fighting the great cause is to not give them a strategy that makes their success possible...(disrupted thought) All I'm saying is you cannot look a soldier in the eye and say questioning the president is less supportive to you than extending your tour for three months when you should be coming home to your family. And that's not fair to put on people that criticize."

"And you know I love you and I respect your service and I would never question any of that. And this is not about questioning the troups and their ability to fight, and their ability to be supported. And that is what the administration does and that is almost criminal."

In regards to this interview as an observer, John McCain wasn't listening attentively to any of the questions or comments Jon posed, and it seemed to my unskilled ears that McCain was answering questions from some make believe interview that was happening at the same time, as if Jon Stewart wasn't really saying anything. I don't believe there was one question that John McCain directly addressed and answered in the theme of Jon Stewart's moderate perspective.

Sad that a Republican candidate for our highest office can't get off his party's rhetoric and spin long enough to truly listen to and honestly answer questions from a true patriot: Jon Stewart.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Americone Dream Challenge Diet

It has been four weeks, almost to the day, that I had my first taste of Ben & Jerry's Stephen Colbert's Americone Dream. It was love at first bite.

After that, I vowed that I would go on the Americone Dream Challenge Diet. I would eat only one meal a day until I could find another pint of Americone Dream. Then, I would ration my pint of Americone Dream to last for the week.

Sure, I've fallen off the Americone Dream diet wagon a couple of times, but I always get back on. I am also a loser, too. I have lost seven (7) pounds so far!

I am also looking for another pint of Americone Dream, too. The local Wal-Mart always seems to be out of it now. Good for my diet. No so good for my poor taste buds.
The American Dream is to own your very own home. I believe the Americone Dream is to taste truthiness in all its truthy glory. And the best way to do that is to maintain a pure and uncensored gut.

Friday, April 20, 2007

What if PE Taught Self-Defense?

The best years of my life were at college. After 13 years of bullying and cliques in a small midwestern community school, my reflection of college was like heaven. I was finally able to live life without being harrassed daily and I could surround myself with people who were similar to me. It was there that I experienced epiphanies that changed my view of life.

So, it was with great shock and sadness when I heard about the shootings that occurred Tuesday at Virginia Tech. I can only pray that the survivors may find a positive epiphany out of their sorrow.

Whenever I hear of such tragedy at the hands of an armed gunman, I begin to feel defenseless and helpless. It is from such a feeling that I wonder why we are not better equipped to handle such situations in our lives. Why aren't we taught how to defend ourselves in school?

I recall hearing the news on April 20, 1999 as I imbibed some cocktails with co-workers at a restaurant in the Denver Tech Center area. I watched the TV screen at the bar with disbelief as local and national media recounted the story umpteen times about Columbine.

I then thought, what would have happened if PE classes routinely taught self-defense to all grade levels? What if all students knew how to confidently, proactively, quickly and respectfully diffuse a negative physical altercation?

It's all fine and dandy to know our readin', writin', and 'rithmetic, but how does that prepare us to live as good, responsible citizens? How can we prepare our children, our next generations, to be better citizens and be responsible and caring members of our society? How can we teach our children to face evil and subdue it?

Our first response is not the trained police or authorities in these situations, it is people like you and me. We are the first response. I'm not talking about arming teachers and professors with weapons, as I believe weapons are motivation for violence (we all go off the edge ever so often, and I can't imagine what would have happened if one of my worst teachers had ready access to a gun--doubt I would be here today). I'm talking about knowing exactly how to deal verbally to calm a potential violent situation, to infuse kind respect to everyone involved, and if there is a weapon (a fist, a knife, a gun, a kicking leg, etc.) that those involved can make quick, unnoticable motions to take over the weapon, safely secure it, and calm the perpetrator to the good of all who surround the incident.

Then, the nation was jolted by the events of September 11, 2001. I immediately thought, what would have happened if the people on those three fateful planes could have known how to properly diffused that terror situation in the air? They had the strength in numbers. But they didn't have the knowledge to intelligently overcome the terrorists and physically subdue them.

The after effect of the tramatic events of September 11th was not to equip all citizens in our nation with self-defense strategies to subdue any form of terrorism. No, it was to put guns in the cockpit. What will that accomplish? Guns, in the hands of someone preoccupied with something like flying a plane, can easily be used against them.

Now, if pilots and flight attendants knew self-defense and knew how to coordinate efforts by the passengers to maintain control of their plane at all times, then we could say we've done something to combat terrorism.

Flash forward to this week. Again, victims were held defenseless because instead of being taught how to defend themselves through 13 years of primary school, they were taught how to do the tinikle (You know, when you had to jump between the rhythm of the clapping bamboo sticks? Our PE teacher would call it double dutch with bamboo sticks.) in PE class.

What would have happened if the girl and the RA practiced self-defense against the attacker in the dorm? The worst that could have happened if they had tried to subdue the attacker with self-defense moves is exactly what happened to them that fateful Tuesday morning.

The best thing that could have happened is that they would have been able to successfully subdue the attacker before the gun was raised, or even if the gun was raised, they strategically and successfully gained control of the weapon from the attacker, were able to subdue the attacker while maintaining respect and consideration to the attacker as a fellow human, and allow him to understand that his decisions and choices to attack were not the right thing to do.

I know this is a pipe dream in a utopian world. But, just imagine... If we were all taught how to effectively think through choices and make decisions in our daily lives that would not only benefit ourselves, but also benefit all those around us? If we were taught not only self-defense, but also how to maintain positive relationships, regardless the situation?

Think about it. Imagine.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Stuffed Up on the 13th

As I suffer with my spring fever, I will give you a video that is fitting for the date (Friday the 13th). I hope it scares your funny bone just enough to squirt your Mountain Dew out your nose (won't happen to me, too stuffed up today).

I will call this "Pizza Delivery: Meat Lovers with Extra NWO"

Vote for ME! Blogger's Choice Awards

Hey, vote for Indigo Lake as the Best Blog About Stuff at the Blogger's Choice Awards! Yep, I'm a nominee! So, if you enjoy reading my off-the-wall thoughts and inquisitive questioning of perculiar things, please put your vote in for Indigo Lake.

And, THANK YOU for your vote of confidence! I knew you could do it!!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

1914: End of Times??

Jehovah's Witness stopped by the other day. Must have missed them, because they left one of their Watchtower's behind. As I was about to throw it away, I noticed on one of the pages a timeline that read something like this: "1914 Christ enthroned in heaven." What?? How do JWs know the exact year of such an occurance?

JWs are really into the apocolyptic vision in Revelations and believe that there are 144,000 annointed ones that will be saved and be placed on the right hand of God, along with Jesus. They are also apparently really big into thinking that unless you are one of the 144,000, you are an observer and will not (or should not) partake in the feast.

Okay then, so who in the JW camp is the all-knowing eye that knows when God enthroned Christ? Well, they explained their calculations based on Bible prophecy. Sure, I read it, and yeah, I am a numbers person, but I am not a mathemetician. Math mumbo-jumbo to me.

So, I thought, is there some cable link between the JW camp and God that captured this significant moment? How do they know and not the Catholics, or the Lutherans, or Anglicans? And what does 1914 have to do with anything today?

[reflection] I have wondered and thought that the end times Jesus spoke of are a more personal echo of the foreseen end times for the world. We all are physically born and we all will likely physically die. Spiritually, we are coming to the end times in our self daily. Each breath marks a breath closer to the end times. Each trial, each struggle marks a strife toward the end time in each of our lives. Our own personal battles and achievements in some way echo the battles and achievements that may be (or have been) met on a worldly scale. [/reflection]

Okay, first of all, there is a possibility that we may be living in the so-called "end times", but no irrefutable proof. So, JWs may think that the end times began in 1914. Maybe. What happened then?

It seems that all the major events listed in Wikipedia could spark the thought of the end of times. Sure, a couple of events stand out:

  • Ford Motor Company creates the standard for the work day at 8 hours
  • Mexican Revolution on January 10th
  • ASCAP is established in February
  • The first successful non-direct blood transfusion
  • Irving, TX incorporated in April
  • Mothers Day proclamation
  • July and August see a lot of Countries bickering--must be PMSing
  • Pope Benedict XV (yeah, you seeing something familiar there?!) succeeds Pope Pius X in September
  • Diamond capital Antwerp, Belgium falls to Germany (must be those Belgian waffles they were after)
  • Speaking of diamonds, the Boston Braves (aren't they in Atlanta) defeat the Philadelphia Athletics (wait... what's up here? The As are in Oakland) in the World Series
  • The Fed (er the Federal Reserve Bank) opens in November, just before the New York Stock Exchange reopens for bond trading after a war-induced closure in July
  • German and British troops stop fighting for Christmas

Yeah, all of those events are kind of crazy. What was up with these folks back in 1914? Were they poisoned by something? Did they have some psychosomatic illness? C'mon, we all know that the Braves belong in Atlanta and the As in Oakland. I do admit that Belgian waffles are worth fighting for, they're that good, but did the whole world have to get into it? Yup. It was the Belgian waffles.

However, I found another info website that states in 1914 that the Federal Trade Commission was set up, Army was the NCAA football champions, and the world's first red-green traffic light was installed in Cleveland. Okay, combine the Belgian waffles and the traffic light, and I think I am beginning to see the light. Yeah. The end of times began in 1914.

Cat Fight at Fox News

I think we all love a good cat fight, but this one is a duesy! Here are my thoughts as I watched this spat.

CAT FIGHT!!! Go O'Riled! Go Giraldo!! This is good!!

You know what really sucks about this fight? Not only did O'Riled not nail Giraldo on his truthiness concern of his daughters (really, it doesn't matter who your daughters hang out with, when they innocently come into the path of a DUI driven vehicle), but the heart stopping heart of the matter is that our legal system doesn't work. (The legal system does not protect citizens.) If O'Riled could really talk coherently, that is what he would have said. But, no, like Giraldo said, he had to make it into a talking point of illegal immigration.

From what I read about the DUI illegal immigrant incident, this was this guy's 2nd DUI charge, and who knows how many times he had DUI'ed without getting caught?! So, basically, the first DUI charge didn't work for this guy. And la migra didn't pick him up after he served his first sentence and take him home. So, our legal system failed, not once, but twice!! Then, our legal system failed a THIRD TIME when an apparent innocent person was killed by this DUI no green card guy. So, the message is that our legal system doesn't work, but that is not O'Riled's talking point. And Giraldo missed out on completely nailing O'Riled because he couldn't get past the whole DUI issue killing someone.

[insane idea] Well, after I had a chance to let the whole thing sink, I decided that maybe O'Reilly had a point. Hmmm... Yeah. It's about immigration. Sure. Darned Mexicans. So, if all our social ills deals with immigration, why don't we just get rid of Mexican immigrants by annexing Mexico into the USA? [/insane idea]

Monday, April 09, 2007

The First Threesome? Lilith, Adam & Eve

Did you know that Eve wasn't the first woman created by God? Apparently, not according to Jewish Midrash. It was Lilith.

Last night I watched the History Channel show Banned from the Bible II, and they exposed this possibility that Adam's first wife wasn't Eve, but Lilith. The Jewish Midrash explains it by claiming that God indeed created man and woman on the sixth day, that being Adam and Lilith. However, Lilith did not follow the idea that she should be submissive to Adam, and Adam didn't like that. (And this may explain why Frasier's wife was named Lilith, too--you know Frasier?NBC? Cheers? Okay.)

So, God apparently agreed with Adam and said that he would make Adam a mate from Adam's own rib, so that the woman made with a piece of Adam would know to be submissive to Adam. Thus, the story in Genesis that Adam went into a deep sleep and God made Eve from Adam's rib.

Lilith apparently was banished and made out to be a demon. Or, as the Jewish Midrash describes, that Lilith was made a demon. (Was she being the jealous lover in the guise of a snake? Or did God change Lilith into a snake? For the sake of all humanity, I would hope God was more kind to Lilith than that.)

However, "Everything derives from woman," according to Midrash: Genesis Rabbah, 17. So, how can man dominate woman? Is this the intent of God when He created woman, for man to dominate woman and for woman to completely submit to man? In a perfect world, sure this would work, because man would not be human and do stupid things to subordinate and severely impair woman's gifted role in life.

But, no. God's creation in Eve caused the "original sin," as Adam submitted to Eve's encouragement to eat the forbidden fruit of the tree of life. I'm sure God was shaking his head in disbelief that Eve, the woman who was created to be submissive to Adam would be the undoing of the entire human race. Eve was supposed to be submissive to Adam, not to a snake. And Adam was so gullible. I mean, where's Adam's balls here? Why didn't he stand up to Eve and just say NO? (Too bad Nancy Reagan wasn't alive then.)

All our anguish because Adam was a wimp. He couldn't live with God's first creation of woman. (Maybe Lilith was the one with the balls, not Adam??) What was so flawed with Lilith, anyway? Why couldn't God give marriage counseling to Adam and Lilith, so they could work out their differences and learn to love each other? This really throws a wrench into the Catholic thinking that a man and woman are bound for life in matrimony, with no reprival for divorce. Look at it this way: The first man and woman bound together by God, was put asunder (Was God really okay with this?), and God basically scrapped Lilith and then created Eve to mate with Adam. Could this event actually have been the first "original sin"??? Could this have a direct effect on the "original sin" of Adam and Eve? (Someone has got to create a play or Broadway show on this whole drama between Eve, Lilith and Adam.) Did Lilith get a bum rap on this?

Men have been playing this one-up game with women, apparently since the beginning of time. Men in power creating cultures that subdue and diffuse the powerful gift of women. Women were created by God to give life, and most women also have the power to care and nurture that life. Men, when they play their games to force submission on women, forget their own role to provide for women and to provide for their offspring, and men forget their role in relation to God and their world.

Women, being of the mind to care and nurture, have taken up the slack of men. It has been that life-giving power of women that have created the greatest strides in human rights around the world.

It seems that men want to break dance and show off, when God would prefer ballroom dance.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Wizard Awareness

It is Severe Weather Awareness Week in Iowa April 2-6, 2007. So, how do you prepare for severe weather? Marathon watching The Wizard of Oz? Sounds like a plan.

Sure, there are other ways to prepare. Websites abound with emergency preparedness, like:

Yeah, get yourself prepared and get to a safe location for a tornado. If you haven't got your health, you haven't got anything. However, think of a tornado like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz. What an adventure!

Follow, follow, follow the yellow brick road! Woo hoo!

That's what I'm talking about. Roads paved in gold. Wait. No! Tornados are usually disasterous events that leave neighborhoods riddled with debris and damage.

Hmmm... Yeah. Okkkkey... I'm beginning to see the light. That means clean up time, too! Woo hoooooo!! There's a reason why tornados instinctively go toward the trailer parks and the lower grade homes. God is saying that we need to clean up those neighborhoods. Since we didn't, then God takes it upon himself to git 'r done.

Sure, some nice expensive, fancy neighborhoods get hit occasionally, but there's probably a reason for that, too. So, next time the tornado siren goes off, find shelter and just think: there's no place like....

Tuesday, Bloody Tuesday

I was going to blog about the thought that permanent US bases in Iraq will force US involvement in the "Iraq War" to continue into oblivion, but nah, I think we all know that by now. Let's get to the heart of the matter:

The Big O
For those who remember taking physiology in high school or college, you know that if you are the O blood type, that you are a universal donor (regardless of charitable disposition). You may also remember that the AB blood type is the universal receiver (blood suckers), and that type A and type B can only receive their own type or type O blood. If Danish scientists have any say, in the future you may not have to worry about your blood type. These researchers have found two enzymes that can break down the antigens found on A, B and AB blood cells, thus rendering them as type O blood, which does not have antigens. O yippee.

Bloody Curse? Cure!
Women may despise their monthly visitor, Aunt Flo, the curse, whatever you want to call it, but it may just save a life. Yes, you read that right. And, I think I will quote blots from a couple of sentences from this article for the jist of this: "Japanese researchers have harvested stem cells from human menstrual blood...AND...these stem cells could be coaxed into forming specialised heart cells, which might one-day be used to treat failing or damaged hearts." Period. End of story?

The Breast Way
So, what is the best way to detect breast cancer? Good question. Apparently, experts don't know either. Some advocate mammograms every year to two years for women starting at age 40, while others say annual mammograms for every 40+ year old woman has too many side effects that outweigh the benefits. There are now some experts that advocate MRIs along side the routine mammogram for women with a high risk of breast cancer. Regardless of experts' view of modern screening devices, the best way to detect breast cancer is to know thy breast. Doctors rarely give their patients the credit we deserve that we know our own bodies better than anyone else. So, make yourself as valuable as your doctor and begin to know thyself. Start with breast self-exams, then begin to listen to your body and sense when things are good and note when they don't seem so right (keep a health journal to show your doctor). If you feel a bump where there once was no bump, or if you feel something is really not right, get it checked out by your doctor. Be specific with your symptoms as to what doesn't feel right. Doctors are only as knowledgeable about you as you tell them what to be knowledgeable about. Doctors usually do not get their doctorate in mind reading, nor are they the god that some doctors (i.e., House) elude to be. And know that 70 per cent of breast cancers are found by self-exams. So, YOU are the best way to detect breast cancer.