Month: August 2014 Page 1 of 3

Checkered finish flag

Blogathon Post #19: Blogathon 2014 Retrospective

Throughout the month of August, I'm aiming to write 25 blog posts. This is post #19 of 25. Find them all in the "blogathon 2014" category.

With this post, I’m declaring the August 2014 blogathon over. I could probably try to squeeze in another hasty post, but you know what? It’s vacation, I’m in Moab, and it’s time to finish things up.

Naturally, I want to take a look at how this crazy experiment turned out.

Read More

Confederate flag

Blogathon Post #18: Confederate Flag

Throughout the month of August, I'm aiming to write 25 blog posts. This is post #18 of 25. Find them all in the "blogathon 2014" category.

[Content note: Racism, slavery, Nazism]

Why… Why would someone choose to hang a Confederate flag across the rear window of their truck (safety concerns aside)? Aside from total obliviousness or outright racism, do you think there is any sort of justification for displaying one’s pride in the ideals of the South that could possibly outweigh the blatant discomfort caused in others by their (justified?) associations with that display?

Lynyrd

Short answer: No.

Long answer: Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo…

Nooooooo

Read More

Blog blog blog

Blogathon Post #17: Blog Development

Throughout the month of August, I'm aiming to write 25 blog posts. This is post #17 of 25. Find them all in the "blogathon 2014" category.

Hello! I got linked to your blog post on KoL by my girlfriend. I very much related to the mentality you share, like expecting free content online, and the sadness of the demise of something you tacitly took for a constant in a universe of variables.

Something I struggle with on my blog (enduringbeta.com) is who the audience is. What the focus should be. I’m curious if that’s a concern for you!

Ross

Read More

You’ll never know if you made the right decision. You will know if you made a good decision. This is so important to me right now.

On Decisions

You’ll never know if you made the right decision. You will know if you made a good decision.

This is so important to me right now.

Lousy Japan photos

Blogathon Post #16: 13 Photos from Japan That I Have Kept Despite Lacking Any Reason to Do So

Throughout the month of August, I'm aiming to write 25 blog posts. This is post #16 of 25. Find them all in the "blogathon 2014" category.

When I lived in Japan, I took a lot of pictures. Over 5,000. Then, when I returned home, I did what everyone with a digital camera does these days–put them all on my external hard drive and forgot about them.

There are some really great memories in there, but there are also a bunch of pictures that I have absolutely no reason to keep, and have just kept around anyway. I’ll pull out the great photos and share their stories some other time, but today, I want to look at a small portion of the goofy, pointless, or just plain inexplicable photos from my time in Japan.

Read More

Space Colonization

Blogathon Post #15: Space Colonization and Poverty

Throughout the month of August, I'm aiming to write 25 blog posts. This is post #15 of 25. Find them all in the "blogathon 2014" category.

Which do you feel is more important for the future of humanity: the colonization of Mars or eliminating poverty?

bluespacething

Space colonization–in fact, interstellar travel–is one of those areas where I have to keep my views pretty close to the chest, in case the Nerd Police catch wind and strip me of my license. Unlike most folks I know who grew up on science fiction and love fantasizing about the new worlds, even galaxies, we may eventually reach as our understanding of the universe expands, I remain utterly apathetic to the idea of colonizing space.

Read More

Depression Header

Blogathon Post #14: Depression

Throughout the month of August, I'm aiming to write 25 blog posts. This is post #14 of 25. Find them all in the "blogathon 2014" category.

[Content note: depression, anxiety, mental illness, suicide, disordered eating]

Depression/Anxiety is a normal thing. You don’t need to medicate it. It’s part of life and a beautiful part at that. There are circumstances in our world that are extremely sad and depressing. As a human, it’s an honorable thing to allow oneself to feel that.
The Polish Ambassador

No.

No, I’m sorry, I can’t let this be.

A friend of mine posted this quote on Facebook the other day. It comes from The Polish Ambassador, an electronic musician also known as David Sugalski. Over the years, I’ve lost much of my interest in bickering on Facebook, so I didn’t raise my objections there, but I have serious problems with this quote, and I can’t just let them go unvoiced.

Read More

Kitchen Anecdotes

Blogathon Post #13: Two Kitchen Anecdotes

Throughout the month of August, I'm aiming to write 25 blog posts. This is post #13 of 25. Find them all in the "blogathon 2014" category.

Two anecdotal glimpses into my kitchen tonight.

Anecdote #1: Life Hack

If you, like me, are better stocked for bartending than baking; and if you, also like me, love eating biscuits, you may one day find yourself in the difficult position of needing to cut biscuits from a sheet of dough but lacking a biscuit cutter.1At least, I assume I’m not the only person in the world to face this dilemma. Perhaps I’m wrong.

Provided you have a Cobbler shaker, there’s a simple solution at hand:

Shaker lid as biscuit cutter

Anecdote #2: Recipes

R and I cook in very different ways. One of us follows recipes to the letter, carefully measuring every ingredient and following every step in the directions. The other is far more improvisational, throwing ingredients in here and there and referring to recipes with nothing more than a cursory glance–if at all.

You get three guesses which one I am, and the first two don’t count.

The biscuit recipe I was following tonight said, for some reason, to grease a baking sheet and then sprinkle two tablespoons each of flour and cornmeal over the sheet, so I faithfully did that. I was running around trying to pull dinner together, so I didn’t stop to think about what a terrible idea this was.

Approximately 52 seconds after I stuck the biscuits, on the thoroughly floured and cornmealed sheet, into the oven, my kitchen was filled with smoke, and at that point, I began to consider that the recipe may have been slightly incorrect.

 

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. At least, I assume I’m not the only person in the world to face this dilemma. Perhaps I’m wrong.
Ferguson Roundup

Blogathon Post #12: Ferguson Link Roundup

Throughout the month of August, I'm aiming to write 25 blog posts. This is post #12 of 25. Find them all in the "blogathon 2014" category.

Content warning: Police brutality, violence, racism.

My heart hurts.

It’s been a week and a half since police in Ferguson, MO shot and killed Mike Brown, an unarmed black teenager. A week and a half later, and the system has devolved into a nightmare. Police responded to what were originally nonviolent protests with riot gear and military equipment and tactics. They’re using tear gas and firing rubber bullets. A curfew has been instilled. The Ferguson police seem to care little for the Constitution; peaceful protesters have reportedly been forced to stay on the move if they want to protest, violating their right to assemble, and police have arrested journalists and interfered with their work. It’s so bad that Amnesty International has, for the first time in its 53-year history, deployed a team of observers inside the United States–in this case, to collect information on what’s going on.

There’s so much that’s wrong with this. First and foremost is the blatant racism at work–Mike Brown’s murder was only the latest in a string of shootings committed by white Americans against young black Americans. Once again, America has proven that it views the lives of black teenagers as disposable, that they don’t deserve justice or fair trials, that they could be executed on the street by any white cop who thinks they look suspicious. It’s fucked.

Then there’s the terrifying amount of police power on display. This, like nothing else in the last few years, has illustrated how damn militarized our police forces have become–and what happens when you blur the lines between police and military. Seeing the police ganging up, turning on civilians, trampling on civil rights, and treating an American city like a warzone and American citizens like enemy combatants… it chills me to the bone. This is not how democracy works. This is not an acceptable use of state power. But this is what we’ve allowed to be built in this country.

All of this is weighing on me, and I feel an obligation to write a blog post about it; to write all of my remaining blog posts about it, but I don’t think that’s feasible. In lieu of that, here are a number of important links about the situation in Ferguson that you should read.

Read More

In Defense of Fuck

Blogathon Post #11: In Defense of Fuck

Throughout the month of August, I'm aiming to write 25 blog posts. This is post #11 of 25. Find them all in the "blogathon 2014" category.

The diner was cozy, with brightly colored walls and shelves of knick-knacks between the tables. Behind us, an elderly couple griped about Obamacare over waffles. After placing our order with a waitress who (of course) called each of us “hon”, we turned our conversation to the subject of the last night’s concert.

We were in Eugene. R and I had traveled eight hours from Walla Walla in the middle of July–braving an un-air-conditioned car and hours, plural, of traffic’s glacial crawl–for a concert. This is not the sort of thing I typically do. In college, friends would rocket off on weekend trips to Portland or Seattle just to attend  concert, a notion I never quite understood. Barring a Carrie Underwood concert last year (which, really, was R’s idea), the last concert I’d gone to was The Decemberists, back in high school. Before that was Captain Bogg and Salty.

But this concert in Eugene was something special. The headlining act was the Goo Goo Dolls, who had provided musical accompaniment for the teenage years of not only me and not only R, but, I’m fairly certain, at least every suburban American kid born in the ’90s. Not everyone’s a fan, of course, and even I’d backed down from the days of Goo Goo Dolls on endless repeat, but the band nonetheless held enough cultural sway to draw us, a few members of R’s family, and thousands of others to their concert in this Eugene amphitheatre.

We were only a few words into our concert debrief when one of R’s relatives made the quip, “I sure wish he hadn’t said–” here she dropped her voice to a whisper–“fuck so much.” “He,” in this case, was frontman John Rzeznik, who, in true rock star fashion, had liberally peppered his between-song banter and anecdotes with the word.

R’s relative continued, dropping her voice to the point of being inaudible whenever she uttered the swear. “It was ‘fuck this’ and ‘fuck that’ and ‘fucking’… couldn’t he just use some different words? Expand your vocabulary!”

This is not about John Rzeznik, who, I’m sure, gives zero fucks. Nor is it about R’s relative, who’s only one of the many people I’ve witnessed expressing this complaint. This is about the unfairly maligned “fuck”, and the people who can’t fucking stand it.

Read More

Page 1 of 3

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén