Friday, February 27, 2009

potatoes and peoples.

Things that freak me out. Too passive? Things by which I allow myself to be freaked out.
One: eyes on potatoes. Disgusto. I was scarred for life when I was about 6 and found a sack of potatoes with full-fledged eyes (we're talking ginormous) in the vegetable drawer in Granmary's fridge. After settling down, I was told that those growths are called "eyes." Really? Potatoes have EYES?? When we give inanimate objects (such as small dogs) human characteristics (such as strollers and clothing), it freaks me out. Thus, potato eyes have freaked me out ever since.



Things that greatly annoy me. I'll allow myself to be passive on this one. Cutesy license plates that spell out something dumb. "2DMSEXY"?!?! Really? You're driving a suburban for crying out loud! A white Suburban with chains around the plates.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ze Government

"Where theistic religion grows weak, [justice] will weaken. Crimes then are defined as antisocial activity, which in turn is then merely what the majority says it is. Then punishments seem to be the result of the majority's ganging up on the minority. This in turn seems inconsistent with democratic feelings. The result is a decline in uniform application of penalties for crime, resultant miscarriage of justice, trampling on the rights of law-abiding people, together with an increase in what ought to be called crime."
~ from Robert Culver's Toward a Biblical View of Civil Government (Chicago: Moody, 1974, pp.78-79.)

"Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, and agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience. This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing. Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor."
~ Romans 13:1-7

Ergh. The Scripture is pretty clear, boys and girls. It's not like this was written under a "good" king, like David - nope, this was written by Paul under Roman rule. These are the rulers who authorized Jesus' death. The tax Jesus paid (see Matthew 17:24-27) went straight to the people who paid off Judas with 30 silver coins. As crummy as our government may seem sometimes, is it directly funding YOUR betrayal and execution?? I'm talking to all you people who are reading this. I don't think any death-row inmates are reading this. If you are, then that last sentence doesn't apply to you. Point is, God says we are to pay taxes and give respect. Not just when we like the person in office and when we appreciate the current level of government intervention. No caveats. God ordained these governments into being..... and I really need to remember that He is sovereign over them all.

Good Ol' Dave Ramsey

Dave Ramsey has a more positive spin on the doom-and-gloom the media is throwing at us. Here's an article that's bound to lift your spirits!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Arlington Cemetery

Yesterday afternoon as I was jogging by Arlington Cemetery, a funeral procession was just about to enter the cemetery. You know how I can be about a) funerals and b) cemeteries (love them in a non-morbid way).... First there were 20+ motorcycles - Hell's Angels types - leading the procession. Then came the hearse, limos, and cars. I was standing next to about 15 policemen who were standing next to their motorcycles, saluting the hearse as it passed. It must have been a Marine, because there were a lot of Marines who were in the motorcade.

Of course I was just standing there and started crying.... there's something about the air of honor, respect, dignity... gets me every time.

SO I researched what one has to do in order to be buried at Arlington Cemetery:



Thus since I do not see myself joining the military and becoming a veteran anytime soon, that leaves me with 2 choices if I am to be buried at Arlington: marry a military man and/or become President.

Comic Relief

THIS IS FUNNY. It's comedian Louis CK - "Everything's Amazing, Nobody's Happy" - rather hilarious. We've come a long way, kids....


Tuesday, February 24, 2009

What happened to my black thumb?

Emily is shedding her previous reputation for killing plants just by looking at them. Yeah, yeah, "How can you take care of children one day if you can't remember to water your plants?" Babies are loud and messy and furthermore cannot exactly be compared to plants. Seriously.

Exhibit A: The Hydrangea. Purchased as a way to spruce up the apartment just in time for Valentine's Day. It has been alive in Emily's presence for 14 days. Amazing.



Exhibit B: The "Lucky" Bamboo. Given as a housewarming gift when I first moved to Virginia, the plant seems to have developed a fungus. I had to oust 3 stalks but am nursing it back to health. Green areas are spreading.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Texans in DC will make a comeback...

An excerpt from Bryan Burrough's "The Political Sun has Set on the Big Rich Texas, But it Will Rise Again":

"I'll miss all those Texans around Washington. The big boots, the big belt buckles, the big talk, the vaguely horrified look on the faces of network correspondents forced to do standups amid the cow pies and convenience stores ringing the Crawford White House. You think Joe Biden is gonna wake up one morning and shoot a load of buckshot into a Texan's face anytime soon? Ah, good times.

Texas will rise again, of that I have no doubt. I don't know when, and I don't know who, but it will. Remember Santa Anna. He thought he'd stomped the Texans at the Alamo, yet it took barely two media cycles for Sam Houston to spring off the canvas and chase him back to Mexico."

....Texans will rise again, my friends. If anything else, we will rise again and secede from the Union. Food for thought, is all.....

Global Warming Schmobal Schmorming

What?! Global warming is a farce? I've heard rumors of how Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth was untrue, but had nothing to back up my arguments other than, "Nah, it's really just the changing weather patterns over the last hundreds of years." 

The basic argument of Gore's camp is that the rising levels of CO2 are causing temperatures on earth to rise. Humans produce CO2. Thus, it's the humans' fault that the earth is getting hotter. This argument took a nosedive when we experienced one of the coldest winters in recent history in 2008... thus they changed the name from "Global Warming" to "Climate Change" and claimed that the crazy fluctuations in temperature were, again, caused by humans.

Enter "The Great Global Warming Swindle" (thank you, Nate). This 1hr 15min documentary (worth it) tells the story behind global warming (including Margaret Thatcher's trouble with oil and gas and her desire to create a diversion... by providing funding to scientists who could prove that humans were causing global warming). Yes, our beloved media is involved in this snafu as well. The United Nations, too.

As it turns out, there is no direct correlation between CO2 levels and temperature. The SUN causes an increase/decrease in temperature. Look at the graphs on the video. Astounding. The idea that leetle beety humans can have such a direct effect on rising temperatures is preposterous when you look at how tiny we are and how huge this universe is (sorry, guys - another reminder that the world doesn't revolve around humans and that there is a Higher Power in charge). (Sure, conserve energy and don't be wasteful.... but that is another blog entry)...

The people interviewed are the Co-founder of Greenpeace, scientists from NASA and NOAA, former director of the US National Weather Service, and other weather agencies...Legit people who know things. Not your average Al "The man who used to be your next President" Gore (sore loser, hmm?)

I'll let you watch it and make your own opinion.... but what I find most alarming is the effect that this is having on Africa and developing nations. To say that these people must use solar energy when they don't even have electricity is preposterous. Check out the clinic in Kenya who runs solely on solar power, and must choose between having the refrigerator plugged in, or the lights on: the solar panels cannot support both at the same time.

The global warming movement is stymieing the development of developing countries, keeping capitalism from spreading, and furthering the socialist agenda that is crippling our country. Please watch it and let me know what you think.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Non-stereotypical journalist. So refreshing.

Have you heard about the Chicago Tea Party? So refreshing to see someone at liberal-leaning MSNBC standing up and saying what most good Americans are thinking: why the heck are we rewarding irresponsible spenders?? How about the silent majority become the not-so-silent-majority? Anyone? Anyone?

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

things I slightly miss about Texas..

Maybe absence makes the heart grow fonder. I've also heard absence makes the heart go yonder.

Point is, Virginia is missing a few crucial things that Texas has that I miss.

1. Tony Chachere's creole seasoning. Yes, former roommates and people who know me too well, I am still addicted to Tony's. They don't have it here. If you love me, you will spend the $1.75 for a can and send it to me. Found at your local HEB. My stash is dwindling.

2. Feeder roads. Seriously. In Texas, feeder roads are everywhere and run parallel to the main road. In the greater DC-metro area, the roads more closely resemble 56-leaf clovers from the air. It's hard to remember which way is north when you have to turn 270 degrees right instead of just turning left. And it's not just one turn. It's left lane, right lane, left lane, and the pesky cars don't respect SUV's trying to get over. Oh, and the Texas Department of Transportation actually does a wonderful job of keeping up the roads. I'm glad I drive an SUV: these potholes are scary.

3. Where the heck are all the drive-throughs?!? So maybe I'd just like to swing in and get a small fry and a Frostie. Do you know how it feels to drive around trying to find a drive through? It's sobering. It makes you a) feel like a glutton, b) feel ridiculous, c) remember how convenient it is to eat poorly. Story: I googled "Chick-Fil-A" and found the closest location - about 2 miles away. I set out in my trusty Robert Frances Weatherbee (4Runner's name), only to find that the address is actually a mall. Who goes to a MALL for the sole purpose of purchasing fast food? What am I supposed to do: sit in a booth in the food court??? Scuttle out to my car and sit in the garage and eat my waffle fries!?!?! ugggggggh. So instead I turn around and try to make my own french fries. Haha THAT was a disaster. 

That's about it for now. It's pretty great here otherwise. More rants to come.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Happy Presidents Day!

Happy Presidents Day, Hugo Chavez! Click here to see Hugo reading a congratulatory note from Castro. So glad you won the vote and thus can be in power for decades, as you wish. Are you kidding me!??!

In other news, in honor of Presidents Day, I ran the entire way from my apartment to the Lincoln Memorial!! This is a little over 2 miles and is quite an accomplishment for the non-runner that I am. Might have had something to do with the 36 degree weather, but whatever. It was very patriotic of me. I would like to thank Jesus (seriously), my Smartwool socks, and my ipod. Thank you.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Arlington National Cemetery

Friday I went to the Arlington National Cemetery. So great. The sign at the entrance requested the following. Isn't it a great little motto for LIFE??




This was taken outside the Womens Memorial. It was a beautiful day.... and can you see the little plane?



Here's the building's center.







This is me... in case you were wondering.


Women in the service....





This is the view from Robert E. Lee's home on the hill. You can see (from left to right) the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, U.S. Capitol, and Jefferson Memorial. How awesome is that???


This is the front of Robert E. Lee's home.



"Beneath this stone lie the bones of 2,111 unknown soldiers gathered after the war from the Battle of Bull Run..."










Tomb of the Unknown Soldier



Thursday, February 12, 2009

Democrazy

Here's a question from Julio at one of Obama's town hall meetings:

MAN I'm proud to be a communication major.

And here's Julio being interviewed on CNN afterwards:
"One last question": and he picks the guy with an Obama cap and a King/Obama shirt. Really?

(ok, link to CNN interview doesn't work because of a terms of use violation. SO I found this interview with Julio. Read Chaucer or something intelligent immediately after viewing this, or else you WILL become dumber.)

And here's some history for you:

"The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who do not."
~Thomas Jefferson

and

"I am for doing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion of the means. I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it."
~ Benjamin Franklin

I don't care who you are. Wake up, America. Pray for our country.

Alexandria

The benefits of not yet having a job: sightseeing! I went to Alexandria today... home of the T.C. Williams Titans!! Yes!! As in Remember the Titans!! I had to see this high school for myself (I know, no telling where Disney filmed the movie, but I wanted to see the school and the football field in the flesh. It is NICE! Perhaps they got some royalties from the movie... it looks new and improved fo' sho'.


This says "T.C. Williams High" but it was too cold to get out of the car, thus I took the picture while driving by. Trust me.


Blast. Couldn't get to the football field - all the gates were closed. What?! I'm not a stalker!! Here's a view of the field from the street behind the school.

Alexandria is the cutest little big city!! I will definitely come back when I have a job and can afford to buy things I don't need.


I promise I'm not bitter (anymore), but admit it: this is FUNNY.

What's this?!? The George Washington Masonic Memorial, of course! I tried to drive in but was greeted with ghastly "Do not enter or else we will tell you all our secrets - or kill you. Our discretion." Just kidding. I am definitely coming back for a tour! Too bad girls can't be Freemasons... I love secret societies.


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Today is Tuesday.

Today is Tuesday. Today is also The Day Emily Took a Two Hour Nap. What?? 

It's true. this whole I-don't-have-a-job-but-I'm-doing-everything-I-can-to-get-one is exhausting. Woke up from aforementioned nap, had some Charles Shaw Cab (cheap wine at Trader Joe's - like $4 cheap - but it's really good! Doesn't cause headaches!) and carried on with the evening, which is including watching Jeopardy! and A Charlie Brown Valentine. I'm that awesome.

BUT before that I did go for a run, follow up on all potential job leads, watch Obama's Town Hall Meeting in Fort Myers, Florida, and read some of Tom Clancy's The Hunt for Red October.

This is my life at the moment. Judgment from you will be ignored for all present intents and purposes. :)

Sunday, February 8, 2009

My Running Skillz

Perhaps you haven't heard of my incredible running skills (ie: running successfully for a VERY short period of time before a) tripping, b) getting out of breath, c) not particularly feeling like running, d) debating the health benefits of walking vs. running, e) deciding that I indeed have a knee problem and should probably walk, thus ensuring use of my legs into my 30's.....)

Needless to say, when I say "I ran," that really means I ran, then jogged, then walked, then -yikes I should probably stretch - then jogged, then... you get the point.

I ran to the Lincoln Memorial yesterday! It was gorgeous outside! Check out how cool my route is: Iwo Jima Memorial, Fort Myer, Arlington Cemetery, Arlington Memorial Bridge, Lincoln Memorial, Reflecting Pool, and back!! How cool is that?!?! It was about 5.7 miles round trip. So fun. (See? It's better to periodically walk to better enjoy the scenery.) ;-)

Friday, February 6, 2009

It's Cold!

Yesterday I ventured out to the Metro with the sole purpose of delivering my packet of cover letter, resume, and reference list to a cool job opportunity downtown. I didn't wear a hat for fear of messing up my hair and thus not looking presentable. As I trudged up the hill near my apartment and the wind was blowing SO hard (forgot to mention: it was 20 degrees with a wind chill factor of FOUR).... it felt like my face had been molded inside a giant ice cube. I thought my ears would fall off. Instead, once on the subway, my ears warmed up and turned bright red, a color they stayed until entirely too much later.

So I bought a hat. At H&M. $7.90 thank you very much. Next stop shopping: some of those low ear warmers. Fashionable they are not, but if I want to keep my ears and non-hat-hair, I need them.

Later I went to Phillips After Five - a FREE viewing of the Phillips Collection (near DuPont Circle) with Haley F. Saw Renoir's Boating Party, some Picassos, Matisse, Dove, Monticelli, Pollack, Rothko, Cezanne, O'Keefe, Prendergast, and Tack, who painted my current favorite:

(It's huge).

After sampling Hook & Ladder's Ember Amber, Irish Ale, Golden Ale, and Backdraft Brown (small sips), we ventured to the DJ-playing-hip-music-making-grown-ups-feel-hip-too area where there were trays tumbling with all sorts of good snacks: dolmades, hummus, raw veggies, et cerno. Dinner is served. Free.

A fun night, met new friends, and made it home without getting lost. Successful day :).

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

And that's Tuesday.


A couple more pictures from the African Museum of Art. I love this spattering!!

There were MANY paintings of Obama, printed cloths with Obama's face on it, etc. This one had a crown:

I also went to the Hirshhorn Gallery:
Please don't ask me who these sculptors/artists are. If you were a real modern art aficionado you would know who they are.

The photos are of course my favorite. Here's a worksite...


Complete with hammocks.



This is a geometric pattern. I think I've seen it before. This is art. WHY is this not considered some sort of plagiarism?? UGH I could have drawn this and be worth millions right now.

Here's a little barrel of fun.



The Smithsonian Arts & Industries Building is closed at present... I can't wait to go back when it's open!!


In case you can't tell, it's snowing!!! This is a view form the balcony. This is also the general location where Fort Meyer is located. Yes, Emily has hit the jackpot. They play Reveille every morning at 6:30am, and Taps every night at 11:00pm. Seriously. 


Once upon a lost drive through the DC-Metro area, I happened upon the National Cathedral. The wind was SO strong as I stood here - I almost fell over! Just wanted to show how incredible my camera is - love the image stabilizer. I took these 2 photos without a flash!
Pattern. Nifty.



Masks!!

Tuesday I went to the African Museum of Art - so interesting! Very well-displayed. Here are pictures of my favorite masks!


Doesn't this little guy look like a Veggie Tales character? I think it's the mouth.

This one is surrounded by bells:



This one was huge!

Horns. Detailing. Cool.


I think this was some sort of fertility mask. Lots of fertility-themed items... Here we have a male and female on top to illustrate.... family togetherness....


The apartment

I get to see the sunrise every morning! Here's the view overlooking Fort Meyer and the Potomac River.....



Walk-through closet!! Always a good thing.



The Ikea masterpiece - my desk. And my mini mask collection:

World Headquarters.
Our cute kitchen and dining room!


Home sweet home.

Monday, February 2, 2009

"This good country"


This morning I met Fesehaye, the parking attendant at the garage. Sweet man in his mid-sixties I'd guess. As I gave him my check (for an ungodly amount of money for a month's worth of parking, but that's beside the point), I saw a little book in some foreign language with a cross on top. I asked him the language, and he said Tigrinya. I was intrigued. We proceeded to have a 20 minute conversation about his home country Eritrea, faith, and foreigners in the U.S.

His eyes welled up with tears as he told me the story of his family, and how 100,000 people died in Eritrea last year alone from hunger. He kept saying how there is no food, and tears rolled down his cheeks. He and his family (8 kids) came over to the US in 1995... one of his children lives in Dallas... one of his sons owns 4 houses... and he is the most grateful immigrant I have ever met.

He kept saying "this good country - America good country," but said that the foreigners are ruining it. He said they are not assimilating with the American culture, and it is destroying America. "We know right, and we know wrong, but we choose to do wrong." We ended our conversation with a "God bless you" as he put his hand over his heart.

What a precious little man. I look forward to becoming his friend.