Thursday, January 31, 2008

Movie List: The 10 Films Every Gay Man Should See

I stumbled onto Bloggernista and found what is titled “Ten Films Every Gay Boy Should See” and found the list quite good.

This list is in no particular order and captures some of the most diverse images of gay men on film. There are undoubtedly other films that have special meaning to you, please share them in the comments.

1.Gay Sex in the Seventies
2. Law of Desire
3. Longtime Companion
4. Tongues Untied
5. My Beautiful Laundrette
6. The Life and Times of Harvey Milk
7. Beautiful Thing.
8. Before Stonewall
9. After Stonewall
10. Another Gay Movie

Short video clips and a brief description accompanies each film. Go here.
While I disagree with number 10 the others are really good. “Beautiful Thing” is a fave. However, here are another 10 + 2 of my own suggestions for every gay man in no particular order:

  1. The Celluloid Closet
  2. Big Eden
  3. Sordid Lives
  4. Touch of Pink
  5. Jeffrey
  6. Parting Glances
  7. Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
  8. Gods and Monsters
  9. The Sum of Us
  10. The Full Monty
  11. And The Band Played On.
  12. The Laramie Project

So there you have it. Twenty two, count’em, twenty two films that every gay boy, man should see. And, I’ll add, definitely see more than once.

And so it goes.
NOTE: January 11, 2010 - This post has received many hits over the past 2 years from visitors in countries where anything gay is against the law and punishable.  I ask that if you find this list helpful and you are able to gain access to these films that you leave a comment. I am encouraged by your courage. - the cajun.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

FEMA: 885 Days to Dispense Funds to Rebuild NOLA Firehouses.

Unbelievable. It took that long to release funds allotted to rebuild. Outrageous.

Meanwhile, Dennis Leary's Leary Foundation has been hard at work helping to rebuild for over a year. Here's a snip:

As of November 2007, four firehouses are fully renovated and reopened. Three more will reopen by the end of the year. From gutted studs to finished renovations including; new electric, plumbing, air conditioning, insulation, sheet rock, taping, painting, flooring, ceilings, interior doors, and all new fixtures to even moving load bearing walls.

The NOFD lost 22 of their 33 firehouses, and 75-80% of the firefighters lost their personal homes as well, and had family members evacuated across the country. Yet during the storm and after the disastrous breach of the levees, not one member of The NOFD abandoned their post throughout the rescue and recovery mission, which lasted months.
Read the rest at the link above, but be warned, you may experience discomfort if you have high blood pressure.

And so it goes.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Hillary on Gay Teen Suicide

While I think this was a brave move on her part, it is important to remember that her husband had GLBT folks working in the highest positions of his campaign, and made many promises to the GLBT community only to ditch us two years after he was elected. The most visible of all was (and is) Don't Ask. Don't Tell, which has destroyed the careers of many talented men and women in the military. Including many Arabic translators. Smart, that.

Do I believe in her commitment? No. was refreshing to see it in the video.

And, NO, before you ask, I DID NOT watch the SOTU address last night. Why? Because whenever I hear Chimpy's smirking voice my head falls to one side, my eyes roll back, and my tongue lolls and I drool. It ain't pretty.

I was watching Torchwood, instead. I think the writing is brilliant. The cast is tight and I Love the fact that Capt. Jack's orientation is not an issue. Oh well, more on this new obsession later. Thank God for YOUTUBE!!!

Anyway, It's going to be an interesting election cycle.

And so it goes.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

NC Senate Candidate Jim Neal.

You know we've come a long way when an openly gay candidate for the US senate and an openly gay state Democratic Committee Chair can share a somewhat intimate moment and share a joke while addressing the group.

Jim is running in an attempt to unseat the do-nothing Bush mouthpiece, that is Elizabeth Dole.

Here's Jim Neal, candidate for US senate from NC, rubbing the head of Jerry Meek NCDC Chairperson. And it's important to remember, this is North Carolina. I've got to tell you that scene took real balls.

There's a short, but interesting interview with Jim over at Queerty. Check it out.

Here in DE we're stuck with the Bush enabling DINO, Tom Carper who, just last week voted for immunity for the Telecoms who have been listening in on our phone calls.

And so it goes.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Gaydar: An Eye for Sexual Orientation

Well, we gave it a name many years ago and it turns out that the gaydar of everyone (gay and straight) is more accurate than we ever imagined. Closet cases are going to get even more paranoid now.

Talk about "gaydar." In just a fraction of a second, people can accurately judge the sexual orientation of other individuals by glancing at their faces, according to new research. The finding builds on the growing theory that the subconscious mind detects and probably guides much more of human behavior than is realized.

Ambady and colleague Nicholas Rule, both at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, wondered about sexual orientation. They showed men and women photos of 90 faces belonging to homosexual men and heterosexual men for intervals ranging from 33 milliseconds to 10 seconds. When given 100 milliseconds or more to view a face, participants correctly identified sexual orientation nearly 70% of the time. Volunteers were less accurate at shorter durations, and their accuracy did not get better at durations beyond 100 milliseconds, the team reports in an upcoming issue of the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. "What is most interesting is that increased exposure time did not improve the results," says Ambady.

Read the rest HERE.

And so it goes.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Heath Ledger: An Appraisal

From the NYT:

Prince of Intensity With a Lightness of Touch


The defining performance of Heath Ledger’s tragically foreshortened career — more or less equivalent to what Jim Stark in “Rebel Without a Cause” was for James Dean — will surely be the role of Ennis Del Mar in “Brokeback Mountain.”

A portrait of inarticulate love and thwarted desire, Ennis is a rich, complicated character succinctly sketched in Annie Proulx’s original short story and brought to heartbreaking life by the film’s screenwriters, Diana Ossana and Larry McMurtry; by its director, Ang Lee; and above all by Mr. Ledger himself.

Outwardly, Ennis presents a familiar image of rough-hewn Western masculinity, and the longing that surges under his taciturn demeanor does not so much contradict this image as help to explain it. Ennis’s love for Jack Twist, whom he meets tending sheep on a Wyoming mountaintop in the early 1960s, takes Ennis by surprise and throws him permanently off balance. His lifelong silence, the film suggests, is less a sign of strength than of cowardice, a crippling inability to acknowledge or communicate the truth of his own feelings.

What made the performance so remarkable was that Mr. Ledger, without betraying Ennis’s dignity or his reserve, was nonetheless able to convey that truth to the audience. This kind of sensitivity — the ability to signal an inner emotional state without overtly showing it — is what distinguishes great screen acting from movie-star posing. And while Mr. Ledger was handsome enough, and famous enough, to be called a movie star, he was serious enough, and smart enough, to be suspicious of deploying his charisma too easily or cheaply.

Nice, huh. Read the rest HERE.

Sadly, so it goes.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Al Gore Comes Out in Favor of Gay Marriage

This is good. How I wish he was running again for President. Watch this.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Phelps to Picket Heath Ledger's Funeral

O.M.G. The man has no shame. One can only pray that the funeral is held in Australia, which may put too much strain on WBC's finances.

Yes. WBC will picket this pervert's funeral, in religious protest and warning: "Be not deceived; God is not mocked." Gal. 6:7. Heath Ledger thought it was great fun defying God Almighty and his plain word; to wit: God Hates Fags! & Fag Enablers! Ergo, God hates the sordid tacky, bucket of slime seasoned with vomit known as 'Brokeback Mountain' - and He hates all persons having anything whatsoever to do with it. Heath Ledger is now in Hell, and has begun serving his eternal sentence there - beside which, nothing else about Heath Ledger is relevant or consequential.

Sorry, I don't provide links to hate sites. I'm sure you can find the site, if you have the stomach.

And so it goes.

Library of Congress: Photo Files on Flickr

The Library of Congress and Flickr have partnered to make this a reality. Here's a bit from the LoC:

As a communicator, I want to expand the reach of the Library and access to our magnificent collections as far and wide as possible. Of course, there are only so many hours in the day, so many staff in Library offices and so many dollars in the budget. Priorities have to be chosen that will most effectively advance our mission.

That’s why it is so exciting to let people know about the launch of a brand-new pilot project the Library of Congress is undertaking with Flickr, the enormously popular photo-sharing site that has been a Web 2.0 innovator. If all goes according to plan, the project will help address at least two major challenges: how to ensure better and better access to our collections, and how to ensure that we have the best possible information about those collections for the benefit of researchers and posterity. In many senses, we are looking to enhance our metadata (one of those Web 2.0 buzzwords that 90 percent of our readers could probably explain better than me).

Go on and read the whole thing at the LoC site via the link above. Then check out the Flickr pages for yourself.

I haven't spent much time viewing the lot, (there are more than 3,000 currently online) I hope to get a good taste on my next day off.

And so it goes.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Heath Ledger. RIP

He was so young, handsome, and so talented. How does this kind of thing happen? The early reports say it was suicide. I've only seen two of his films; A Knights Tale, and Brokeback Mountain. The first wasn't so memorable, but Brokeback....was incredible. What a waste. So young. So sad. So sad.

1/23/08 UPDATE: The NYT is reporting today that his death does not appear to have been suicide. the report suggests that Ledger was suffering from pneumonia. In any event, an autopsy is scheduled for today.

And sadly, so it goes.


Monday, January 21, 2008

Media Matters: An Open Letter to NBC

It's all about Tweety and it goes something like this:

"Senator Clinton's candidacy aside, Matthews' degrading attacks on women constitute a broader and more troubling pattern that has unfolded over the years. During his coverage of the 2000 presidential race, Matthews repeatedly referred to author Naomi Wolf as "the political equivalent of Viagra." His on-air treatment of CNBC anchor Erin Burnett ("Could you get a little closer to the camera? ...You're beautiful. ...You're a knockout.") has been described by Emily's List President Ellen Malcolm as "sexual harassment brought to you by MSNBC."'


"[A]s you well know, programs like Hardball define wider media narratives and agendas and shape public perceptions about public affairs, especially, as is the case now, when the nation is poised to make critical choices about its future direction. Given Matthews' record detailed above, I fear that he will continue to insult, misinform, and ultimately disserve the public as we continue to engage in a basic process of our democracy in the coming months."

Read the whole letter HERE.

And so it goes.


USA on Warning List of Torturers

And this is from our neighbor to the north. Jeez!

Foreign Affairs suspects U.S. tortures prisoners
Mike Blanchfield, Ottawa Citizen
Published: Thursday, January 17, 2008
OTTAWA - A Foreign Affairs document has identified the United States and Israel as countries it suspects of practicing torture.
The document also defines such U.S. interrogation techniques as blindfolding and forced nudity as torture.
The emergence of the document - a PowerPoint presentation meant to instruct Canadian diplomats on how to recognize torture cases abroad - is bound to strain relations with the two countries that Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper has sought to strengthen during his two years in power.

Read the whole piece HERE.

I don't know about you, but I am so over the current state of the country at this point that if I hear anyone even remotely suggest that this president did a good job at anything, I'll lose my lunch.

And so it goes.


Saturday, January 19, 2008

O'Reilly Gets Smacked Down

I don't usually pay attention to anything that comes out of loofah man's drooling mouth, but when I received this email message from film maker Robert Greenwald, then watched the video, I was appalled. Here's the video.

Now go and sign the letter HERE.

And so it goes.

Friday, January 18, 2008

What European City do I Belong in?

Turns out it is my favourite city.

You Belong in Amsterdam

A little old fashioned, a little modern - you're the best of both worlds. And so is Amsterdam.
Whether you want to be a squatter graffiti artist or a great novelist, Amsterdam has all that you want in Europe (in one small city).

I love Amsterdam. (sigh) Borrowed from HERE.

And so it goes.

Huckabee: Gays = Bestiality

Yes, again. Huckabee seems to be channeling Santorum. This is part of the piece from Google News.

"Marriage has ... as long as there's been human history, meant a man and a woman in a relationship for life. Once we change that definition, then where does it go from there?" he asked in an interview with online "Beliefnet" magazine.

"Well, I don't think that's a radical view, to say we're going to affirm marriage. I think the radical view is to say that we're going to change the definition of marriage so that it can mean two men, two women, a man and three women, a man and a child, a man and animal," he added.

(Emphasis mine)

From the man who believes the earth is 6 thousand years old! Really. No, really.

Read the whole thing HERE.

And so it goes.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

History Channel: Life After People

After reading "The World Without Us" I am so looking forward to this two-hour special. Here's a sneak preview:

And so it goes.


Are YOU a Moron?

I found this over at pasterdan's place: Street Prophets. You might want to read it, cut and paste it into an email and send to all your friends.


Certain people are banking on it.

You may have received an e-mail this year outlining a number of FALSE claims about Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama.

I am not going to repeat those claims, because that's what the jackasses who create such e-mails want. They want to distract you with irrelevant lies so that you DON'T ask questions like:

  • When is the war going to be over?

  • Why did we go to war in the first place?

  • Was it worth it to go to war?

  • When is somebody going to help everybody get health care without going bankrupt in the process?

  • When is somebody going to do something about the fact that I'm working harder than ever, yet more financially strapped than I ever was? When are they going to do something about the jobs that have been shipped overseas by the armful? I'd like to retire in peace some day, but I'm not sure my pension will be there.

  • When is somebody going to help my kids go to college or live a better life than I did?

  • When is somebody going to do something about the government working for the corporations and executives, instead of for people like me?

Some people really don't want you to ask questions like that. It makes them very, very nervous because they don't have good answers for you. So they try to distract you so you don't ask them.

Whose business is it how Barack Obama worships God, anyway? I thought we were supposed to have freedom of religion in America. Well, guess what? That means nobody can tell you or me or Senator Obama what to believe. ESPECIALLY when they're not really interested in religion at all. They just want you to think they are So. You. Don't. Ask. Questions.

They don't care about the Bill of Rights that gives us the freedom to follow God - or not follow God - in any way we see fit.

They don't care about faith, except to tell YOU what THE RIGHT WAY (their way) to believe in God is.


As a matter of fact, they think you're stupid. They think that you'll take your eye off the birdie long enough for them to win the election and keep on doing what they want to do. They have spent a lot of time and a lot of money to keep you in the dark, because they don't want to take care of your needs at all.

All they want is for you to sit still and not ask questions.

Is that any way to run a country?

Pastor Daniel Schultz
Campbellsport, Wisconsin

P.S. - it isn't just Obama. A lot of money has gone into convincing people that Hillary Clinton isn't religious. In fact, she's a life-long Methodist.

Why do that?

Because they know that people don't like atheists, and won't vote for them. So they think that you're stupid enough to believe the lie that she is a non-believer, and they think that you're stupid enough to be bigoted against non-believers.

And they don't want you to ask questions.

P.P.S. - If you want to know the truth about Obama's faith and church, see:

And to learn more about some of the people behind these lies, see this site:

Or you can look up my site:

And P.P.S.: forward this to everybody you know! It's time we stopped letting people use religion to divide us so they can get rich and start wars.

The stoopid is just beginning. Swift boaters are already spreading rumors and the welfare wingnuts are waiting in the wings. It's going to be a bumpy year.

And so it goes.


Monday, January 14, 2008

Smackdown to a Stupid Seattle Smear of NOLA

From Scout Prime over at First Draft:

This is the kind of story that brings out the stupid and of course it did just that. In his post Oyster calls the matter of a Mr Vandeleun's stupid to the attention of Ashley Morris in hope that Ashley will deliver his "trademark subtlety and finesse" to one Mr. Vanderleun. Ashley in turn delivers and I highly recommend reading all of it but here is a taste.....

He calls New Orleanians “legions of hustlers, grifters, drunks, junkies, pathics and drooling layabouts”. Hmmm…I wonder which of us he’s talking about. People like me, with a PhD and two jobs? Others on my blogroll, with JDs, PhDs, MBAs, MDs, MFAs, and other advanced degrees? Oh, that’s right. He’s one of those who probably couldn’t cut it, and so his ‘conservative’ response is to slam the ‘liberal bent in higher education’ and denigrate our achievements. People in New Orleans are working harder than anyone, jackass, regardless of educational level. If you only have one job (and I don’t know a PhD in this town that only has one job), then you probably spend the rest of your time fixing up your house. Yes, we’re still doing it. Most of the gutting is over, but people are still hanging drywall, painting, hauling off debris, patching roofs and in general rebuilding their homes and lives. There’s also little affordable childcare, so our kids are either helping us with the work, or else we have to postpone the rebuilding time until after the kids are in bed. So, for clarification Mookie, does that make us “pathics” or “drooling layabouts”?

I love how people who have no grasp of mathematics, statistics, or even simple arithmetic still try to use numbers to help support their points. The twit who sued for $3 Quadrillion is what we call an outlier. We don’t consider him when determining weighted averages. He won’t make a big difference when calculating the median. But that doesn’t stop Mookie from using this outlier to cipher an average. As we say about the lottery, it is a tax on those who failed statistics. Mookie must direct deposit his paycheck to the lottery, and picks the same numbers, week after clueless week after clueless week.

Do read the rest

I heard in a news report last weekend that most Americans think that NOLA is still flooded. This is because if/when the media presents a story about the area, they use archive footage from the original flood. Unbelievable. Now that's lazy. I have friends in Mississippi who are still living (four days a week) in tents on their property because of battles with insurance companies and the state government. It ain't all well just because the MS casinos have been able to reopen.

If you care to know what is really happening in the Gulf area and NOLA go HERE.

And so it goes.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

The Story of Stuff

This 20 minute video The Story of Stuff with Annie is something everyone should see before they take another trip to the a box store. It's amazing what the real cost is for our cheap consumables, but the striking thing is how unhappy it makes us. In fact, when planned obsolescence was invented after WWII, personal happiness had peaked and it's been going down ever since. Makes you think about how amassing more stuff doesn't come close to replacing our loss of community. This was all planned out. And we participate in it!

It's an eye-opener, and a little depressing, but I realized that this is what I have been doing for almost a year. Go see the whole thing via the link or graphic above and then take a look at your own consumption of cheap, disposable crap.

An earlier post today linked to a story about China's upcoming ban on plastic bags and suggested purchasing reusable bags purchased at your favorite Supermarket. While it may be a small step, it is a step in the right direction, and one that is relatively hassle-free. Think about it.

Now, go. Watch the video. You'll be glad you did.

So it goes.

China Bans Plastic Bags.

Bravo to China. A stain on the world is to disappear in one of the largest polluting countries of the world. A few cities in the this country have banned them and in Europe they're becoming less common. It's easy to just bring reusable shopping bags to the grocery store (or leave them in your car) so I'm fine with ditching them. My supermarket has their own and they’re quite reasonable.

I never quite understand the right’s hostility to getting rid of plastic bags. Oh I forgot, they're made from oil.

BEIJING - Declaring war on the "white pollution" choking its cities, farms and waterways, China is banning free plastic shopping bags and calling for a return to the cloth bags of old — steps largely welcomed by merchants and shoppers on Wednesday...

Every shopping trip used to find me returning home with a minimum of 4 of the damned things. And they're so flimsy that they can barely hold together while carrying a single heavy item; like a half gallon of milk. If I've purchased a really heavy item, they double-bag. Oh, joy!

More HERE.

So it goes.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Torchwood Season Teaser

This is a Sci-Fi show on the BBC, in case you haven't heard of it. Torchwood is a spinoff of Doctor Who. I just recently found it and with the luxury of DirecTV I am able to watch. One of the stars is John Barrowman, an all around performer. Anyway, here's the teaser for the new season. Enjoy.

I think I'll be watching tonight.

And so it goes.


Friday, January 11, 2008

Don't Ask. Don't Tell. Takes Toll on Children

This was just published in Bay Windows. Some things we hardly think about when this issue arises. But important to note.
Five-year-old William and three-year-old Ryan are the children of decorated U.S. Army officer Cheryl Parker. Like other children of service members, they have dealt with cross-country moves and months without their mother while she was deployed in Iraq. Unlike the others, however, they must forgo many benefits, conveniences and support services offered to military families, or risk revealing that they have another mother, Donna Lewis. This could lead to Parker’s dismissal under the military’s "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell" policy, even in LGBT-friendly Massachusetts. (Note: Names and identifying details have been changed to protect the family.)

In the close-knit community of an army base, there is a strong chance the young children will inadvertently out their mothers. "When I tried to put William in on-base daycare," explains Parker, "he would talk about having two moms. A lot of the daycare workers are spouses of military personnel. I don’t need somebody’s wife saying ’What’s the deal with William Parker?’" The same applies to the other activities provided by the Army family centers, such as kiddie gym classes. "The questions start and then the lying begins, and it’s just too complicated."

The couple is adamant, however, that however much they must lie to protect their family, they will never have their children do so. Lewis explains "We can’t take them to the commissary together anymore. One of the boys will say ’Mom? Not you, my other mom.’ We can’t tell him, ’Don’t say that,’ because he’s going to say, ’Why?’ The best way to deal with it is just not to put them in that situation."

The "situations" are often ones children would relish. "They had this humongous playground on one base that William absolutely loved," says Lewis. "But if there were a lot of kids around, we couldn’t go, because he might say ’That’s my mom, my other mom’s at home.’ That’s what kids do. They introduce themselves. If he was going to play by himself, which really sounds sad, then it was okay for him to go to the playground." She adds, "He’s dying to play soccer, and they have on-base teams for younger kids. We have to find a team off base, away from the area. William can’t go to the swimming pool, he can’t go to movie day, the things other kids are allowed to do."


Lewis adds "We want them to be honest, and we want them to be themselves. We’ve already talked about it - if that means they out us and we lose everything, then to us, that’s God’s will. I am not going to try and teach my babies to be good, upstanding citizens and in the same breath say ’Lie.’ I can’t. It doesn’t work."

That’s a sense of values the military should be proud to embrace.

Together we all say, Amen.

I hope this story doesn't come back to bite them. The piece is a bit long, but well worth your attention. HERE.

And so it goes.

Buffalo Churches Apologize & Welcome Gays

Now this is a breath of fresh air. Unlike the drivel sent out yearly by the Southern Baptists, which essentially says, in so many words - FU.

Buffalo, New York (January 11, 2008) — In an open letter to gay people in Western New York, leaders of Episcopal congregations in Buffalo offered an apology and asked forgiveness from gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. The letter further emphasized that they offer gay people, welcoming and loving religious congregations.

An email sent to Outcome by The Reverend Armand John Kreft, Rector Church of the Ascension, offered their support of GLBT people in their battles with hatred, bigotry, prejudice and violence. The group of City of Buffalo Churches further make clear that GLBT people are welcomed by their congregation. "•Staff

The full text of the letter follows:

Contact: The Reverend Armand John Kreft, Rector Church of the Ascension 716-884-6362

Date: January 11, 2008

An Open Letter to the GLBT Community:

We leaders of Episcopal congregations in Buffalo want to offer our apology and ask forgiveness from the Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender community. For centuries the institutional church and organized religion have slandered, tortured, disenfranchised and sometimes murdered members of the community. We ask forgiveness for using our Sacred Scriptures to wrongly justify hatred, bigotry, prejudice and violence against those of different affectional orientation and gender identification, both in the past and, unfortunately, still today.

As leaders of congregations, some of us openly gay and lesbian, we are humbled and vow to use our influence to change not only our religions but our laws that seek to marginalize the GLBT community. If you would like to seek an organized religion, we would urge you to attend as many different denominations and spiritual paths as you can. There are several that will welcome you. If you wish to seek an Episcopal Church, those of us listed below promise a welcoming and loving community for you, and/or your partner and your children.


St. Paul’s Cathedral Church
128 Pearl Street

Church of the Ascension
16 Linwood Avenue at North St

St. John’s – Grace Church
51 Colonial Circle

Church of the Good Shepherd
96 Jewett Parkway

St. Phillips Church

18 Sussex Street


Chapel of St. Anthony of Padua
1114 Delaware Avenue

Ephphatha Church of the Deaf
96 Jewett Parkway

More later.


Thursday, January 10, 2008

Heard at the Store.

Mother: “Now we’re going home to take a nap.”
Child: “But I’m not tired.”
Mother: “You will be. I have some NyQuil.”
I'm just sayin'.

More later.


Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Wear Orange Friday to Protest Gitmo

The ACLU is organizing a nationwide protest this Friday, January 11, to protest the ongoing shame that is Guantanamo Bay. It's a rather innovative idea, wearing orange that day (though I'm not sure I own any orange, I'm a winter). Seriously, it's a novel idea for a protest and a worthy cause. Find out more via the ACLU's Web site here.

More later.


Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Extreme Weather Cats of Mt. Washington

What a great story. For all you cat lovers out there this one should make you think, especially if you've ever visited Mt. Washington:

Since the earliest days of the Mount Washington observatory in the 1930's, felines have accompanied the men and women who have served as weather observers atop Mount Washington. Despite bitter cold, freezing fog, heavy snow and legendary wind, these cats have helped to make the remote mountaintop weather station feel a little more like home. over the years, a number of cats have patrolled the observatory. nin, the famous cat who served as the observatory's pet and mascot for the last dozen years, vacated his post on December 26, 2007.

The story of Nin's retirement captured the attention of the nation, making its way to newspapers, television shows and websites across the country and around the world in the days that followed his final trip down the mountain. From coast to coast, the story of Mount Washington’s extreme weather cat touched the hearts of thousands of people.

More importantly, Nin's retirement has left the door open for a new cat to make its mark, taking over as New Hampshire’s top cat. - mt. washington observatory

I miss my kitties. I miss their silliness, their intuition, and their love.

More later.


Monday, January 7, 2008

Brad Pitt's "Pink House Project "in NOLA Raises $$$

The Times Picayune has the details:

On Sunday, in front of a backdrop of flamingo-colored houses, hundreds of people celebrated Brad Pitt's Make It Right foundation and caught a rare appearance by the Lower 9th Ward's homegrown superstars: the Lastie family, whose musicians have blown horns and beat drums for this city's finest bands for nearly a century.

"The Lasties are one of the greatest unbroken line of drummers," said writer Jason Berry, who decades ago, made a documentary about two great New Orleans music families: the Nevilles and the Lasties.

The Lastie Family Gospel Choir's afternoon concert marked the end of the art installation of 150 pink fabric homes that appeared in early December as an attention-getter for actor Brad Pitt's nonprofit Make It Right project, which aims to build environmentally friendly, affordable housing for Katrina victims.

To kick off the fundraising, both Pitt and philanthropist Steve Bing, a real-estate developer and film producer, pledged to match up to $5 million in contributions.

The nonprofit is still collecting dollars, but at this point it has raised $10 million matchable dollars from more than 17,000 donors in more than 80 countries.

The donor list is studded with luminaries: Angela Bassett, Bill Cosby, Tom Cruise, Carrie Fisher, Morgan Freeman, Laurence Fishburne, Will Ferrell, Goldie Hawn, Salma Hayek, Ethan Hawke, Angelica Huston, Samuel L. Jackson, Quincy Jones, Lenny Kravitz, Jack Nicholson, Keanu Reeves, Ving Rhames, Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon, Meg Ryan, Kevin Spacey, David Spade, Oprah Winfrey, Forest Whitaker, Denzel Washington, Barbra Streisand, Russell Simmons, brothers Charlie Sheen and Emilio Estevez, and brothers Branford and Wynton Marsalis.

Tom Darden, the project's executive director, said the exhibit would have had a longer run except for its rented scaffolding, which was needed elsewhere for Carnival.

Note: you didn't see George W. Bush in that list, did you?

For those of you who don't know "Carnival" = "Mardi Gras" and you can read the whole thing HERE.

More later.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

City of God Appeal: The Final Hours

This is it. The appeal is in the last 24 hours and MadPriest was more from us all.

Sometime, during the day tomorrow, the PayPal facility will close. Tomorrow is also the last day to send cheques through the post. We will give out a provisional grand total in the next couple of days and a definite grand total a week later.

We go in to these all important last few hours of this historic appeal with our running total standing at:


OMG! I can't stand it! I'm going to jump up and down and squeal like a girlie!

You know what I would like to happen to this figure, don't you...?

The OCICBW... Community Christmas Appeal this year is raising money to help pay for the work being done by the Anglican Church of Christ the King in the City Of God district of Rio De Janeiro. Full details about the project and how to send your gifts can be found HERE.

And don't forget to

And if possible, advertise the appeal on your own sites as this belongs to all of us.

Come on you lot!
Squeeze it one more time for the MadPriest!

More later.


George McGovern: Impeach Bush!

WOW! Here's a bit from the end of his Op-Ed piece in WaPo.

Today, after five years of clumsy, mistaken policies and U.S. military occupation, Iraq has become a breeding ground of terrorism and bloody civil strife. It is no secret that former president Bush, his secretary of state, James A. Baker III, and his national security adviser, Gen. Brent Scowcroft, all opposed the 2003 invasion and occupation of Iraq.

In addition to the shocking breakdown of presidential legal and moral responsibility, there is the scandalous neglect and mishandling of the Hurricane Katrina catastrophe. The veteran CNN commentator Jack Cafferty condenses it to a sentence: "I have never ever seen anything as badly bungled and poorly handled as this situation in New Orleans." Any impeachment proceeding must include a careful and critical look at the collapse of presidential leadership in response to perhaps the worst natural disaster in U.S. history.

Impeachment is unlikely, of course. But we must still urge Congress to act. Impeachment, quite simply, is the procedure written into the Constitution to deal with presidents who violate the Constitution and the laws of the land. It is also a way to signal to the American people and the world that some of us feel strongly enough about the present drift of our country to support the impeachment of the false prophets who have led us astray. This, I believe, is the rightful course for an American patriot.

As former representative Elizabeth Holtzman, who played a key role in the Nixon impeachment proceedings, wrote two years ago, "it wasn't until the most recent revelations that President Bush directed the wiretapping of hundreds, possibly thousands, of Americans, in violation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) -- and argued that, as Commander in Chief, he had the right in the interests of national security to override our country's laws -- that I felt the same sinking feeling in my stomach as I did during Watergate. . . . A President, any President, who maintains that he is above the law -- and repeatedly violates the law -- thereby commits high crimes and misdemeanors."

I believe we have a chance to heal the wounds the nation has suffered in the opening decade of the 21st century. This recovery may take a generation and will depend on the election of a series of rational presidents and Congresses. At age 85, I won't be around to witness the completion of the difficult rebuilding of our sorely damaged country, but I'd like to hold on long enough to see the healing begin.

There has never been a day in my adult life when I would not have sacrificed that life to save the United States from genuine danger, such as the ones we faced when I served as a bomber pilot in World War II. We must be a great nation because from time to time, we make gigantic blunders, but so far, we have survived and recovered.

Are you listening, Nancy? Harry? Anybody?

Nope, guess not.

More later.


Saturday, January 5, 2008

Study: Gays and Women are Worst Drivers

Who funds this kind of crap? Good grief. From the Telegraph:

Women and gay men are likely to be the worst drivers, a new study has shown.

Research has revealed that both perform poorly in tasks involving navigation and spatial awareness when compared to heterosexual men.

..Both tend to rely on local landmarks to get around, and are also slower to take in spatial information. The computer-based tests were carried out on 140 volunteers, and demonstrated that gay men, straight women and lesbians navigated in a similar way, sharing the same weaknesses.

The results back earlier studies supporting the stereotype that women are poor navigators.

..."Gay people appear to show a 'mosaic' of performance, parts of which are male-like and other parts of which are female-like," he said.

Read the whole stupid thing HERE.

More later.


Friday, January 4, 2008

An Important Journey

This was received from a reader, and I had to share it here. Don't know if it was written by the reader, but it sums up my journey of the past 2 years.

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice---
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
"mend my life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But Little, by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do---
determined to save
the only life you could save.

I know we are to celebrate the birthday of a King, Christ. I know he died so that we might live... Well I say save your own life the best way you can because you and I are the Christos of our own lives.
More later.


City of God Appeal - Day 36

This is stunning. Simply stunning. Words fail. While the paypal account will turn into a pumpkin on Sunday, January 6th, checks may still be sent to the address link in the message below. An update from MadPriest:

The Stateside office has reopened following the Christmas break and a whole load of cheques were waiting for us on the doormat. This will make you smile:

The appeal total now stands at:


Just two days left and MadPriest is starting to do something he usually leaves to the better qualified. Yes, he's ON HIS KNEES (the only position approved by the Bishop of Horsham) praying for a miracle.

The OCICBW... Community Christmas Appeal this year is raising money to help pay for the work being done by the Anglican Church of Christ the King in the City Of God district of Rio De Janeiro. Full details about the project and how to send your gifts can be found HERE.

And don't forget to

And if possible, advertise the appeal on your own sites as this belongs to all of us.

Come on you lot!
And as the actress said to the bishop:
Let's have one last spurt out of you.
And let's make it a good one.
As you can see, the total is far greater than I hoped for in my previous post. What a blessing.

More later, and thanks for your support.


Thursday, January 3, 2008

City of God Appeal - Day 34

Since this appeal ends on Epiphany, Sunday January 6, it wouldn't surprise me if they come close to 8 thousand dollars. I'm sure the checks will be coming to even after the 6th.

The appeal total now stands at:


Which is a bit good. Especially as I think Lisbeth has found some money in a jacket pocket that I don't think has been included yet.

We received the following email from Our Man in Rio today:

Elizabeth and Jonathan, congratulations for the almost 7000 dollar mark... That will surely help Christ the King... 13,000 reais is really a lot of money for that community (it is actually almost 2 years of pledging there).

Blessings in Christ.

Don't forget that we close the PayPal facility at midnight on this coming Sunday. Then we will wait a week for any last minute cheques to turn up. We really must hit the $7500 mark but there's still a teeny weeny bit of hope deep down in my pessimistic soul that thinks there's just a chance we could do better.

The OCICBW... Community Christmas Appeal this year is raising money to help pay for the work being done by the Anglican Church of Christ the King in the City Of God district of Rio De Janeiro. Full details about the project and how to send your gifts can be found HERE.

And don't forget to

And if possible, advertise the appeal on your own sites as this belongs to all of us.
Go and pay MadPriest a visit. You'll enjoy it.

More later.


Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Choreographer Michael Kidd - Dead

I didn't hear about this on any newscast, nor on NPR. He died a week ago. One of the best is all but forgotten.

Michael Kidd, the award-winning choreographer of exuberant dance numbers for Broadway shows like “Finian’s Rainbow” and “Guys and Dolls” and Hollywood musicals including “The Band Wagon” and “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers,” died on Sunday at his home in Los Angeles.

The cause was cancer, said his nephew Robert Greenwald. Biographical sources generally give Mr. Kidd’s age as 88, but Mr. Greenwald said his uncle was actually 92.

On Broadway, Mr. Kidd won five Tony Awards: for “Finian’s Rainbow” in 1947, “Guys and Dolls” in 1951, “Can-Can” in 1954, “Li’l Abner” in 1957, and “Destry Rides Again” in 1960. In Hollywood, he received a special 1997 Academy Award “in recognition of his services to the art of dance in the art of the screen.”

Perhaps his best-known film work was “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers,” a 1954 musical of the American frontier whose dances, which he created for ballet dancers, were not supposed to appear balletic. He had them perform what he called “work movements,” like wielding axes.

“I always use real-life gestures, and most of my dancing is based on real life,” Mr. Kidd said in an interview. He defined his choreography as “human behavior and people’s manners, stylized into musical rhythmic forms.”

Anna Kisselgoff, the former chief dance critic of The New York Times, wrote that Mr. Kidd’s signature was “characterization through energy, epitomized by a lovesick male clan going courting with an acrobatic challenge dance” in “Seven Brides.”

Seven Brides remains one of my favorite MGM musicals.

Read the rest HERE.

More later.
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