Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Funnies

I've got a case of the funnies today. Now I want to share some of the laughter with you!

From my favorite TV show in the history of television programming, The Golden Girls:

Dorothy Petrillo-Zbornak: Ma, thank God you're here!
Sophia Petrillo: Arrested for prostitution! I can't believe it!
Blanche Devereaux: Sophia, were innocent!
Sophia Petrillo: I know that. I can't believe these dumb cops would think people would wanna pay money to sleep with you!
Rose Nylund: Sophia, did you come to bail us out?
Dorothy Petrillo-Zbornak: No, Rose! She's dropping off a manacotti with a file in it!

This little gem, well, it speaks for itself:

And one last thing. "From the mouths of babes..."

Because sometimes, you just have to laugh.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Save the Stink Bug!

That poor little stink bug.

I almost killed him.

As I was scribbling notes as fast as I could, I thought I saw something move by my knee. I looked, saw nothing, and continued note-taking.

A few moments after that, when I had a chance to just listen to the professor talk, I looked at the top of my paper (at this point on the page, I was writing all the way at the bottom). On the top was some little light brown thing. I realized it was some kind of bug, so I immediately flicked it off with my pencil.

When it landed belly up on the floor by my feet, I realized it was a stink bug. Now I know most everyone hates them and finds them to be no more than nuisances, but personally I have never had issue with them.

After a few minutes passed, I noticed that the little guy was still on his back, struggling to right himself. I felt so bad. So bad that I honestly don't think you can understand. Seriously.

And this is all over a bug! A bug! A stink bug!

I knew it wasn't real, but I imagined that he was screaming while he writhed in helplessness. I wanted to help, but I also didn't want everyone to watch the girl in the front row play around on the floor.

So I decided to wait until class was over. Once most of the class left I would right the stink bug and go on my way. But after my professor stopped lecturing, she said, "Don't forget to turn in your homework!"

Crap! That means everyone is going to walk right in front of me...right where the helpless stinkbug was struggling. Terrified, I tried to put my things away quickly so that I could flick the bug out of harm's way. But I wasn't fast enough! Boots and sneakers and flip-flops came barreling toward him.

I literally cringed when I thought people were going to step on him. He almost bit the dust several times. It was a harrowing minute.

After the last straggler walked away from the bug, I crouched down and righted him with my homework. As I did this, I scooted him to a location not on the main drag, hoping that he would have some sense and get off of the floor of a lecture hall.

I'll never know what became of that stink bug. I do know, however, that something tiny and seemingly insignificant taught me a lesson.

Because of my pride, I let a little creature struggle for 15 minutes. Maybe he never actually felt discomfort or pain, but I imagined that he did. That was enough to make me sink lower into my seat. I was ashamed at myself for having put him in such a position. I also didn't want to cause a disturbance by getting out of my seat in the middle of help a bug.

But I'm sure it was more pride than not disturbing others that prevented me from doing the right thing as soon as I realized that I could have done something.

A nice slice of humble pie, I'd say.

I'm sorry little stink bug.

And thank you Jesus for not waiting 15 minutes to save my life.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sigh No More

I have discovered a new band. Rather, I think I have discovered a new love. I'm sure by now that my friends are sick of hearing me talk about Mumford and Sons...

...but I just can't help myself! I know that some of my friends love them as much as I do while some don't care for them at all. That's fine. Won't change my feelings, for sure. I'll probably be annoying until the high of discovering awesome music wears off.

Very few songs and very few albums make me feel alive. What? I don't quite understand it. I usually feel God's presence in the absence of words more than I do songs with lyrics. Just give me instruments, and I'll be fine.

Give me instruments and words that make me feel awesome?! That is quite the accomplishment. Because of those lyrics and sound, I feel more aware of God in my life. You know, sometimes you just can't articulate what you want to say to God. It is always nice when you find help to speak. And when you finally organize that gobbledygook of thought into something, your heart says and sings it along with you.

I'm happy as a clam. Or I'm happy as my Charlie dog is when, well, when is he not happy? Anyway, I'm still learning the words so I can sing along to all of their songs.

Nerdfest alert, perhaps. We'll see. So I give you a sampling of the awesomeness that is Mumford and Sons. The title track of their album "Sigh No More" puts into words what I cannot:

Love it will not betray you
Dismay or enslave you, it will set you free.
Be more like the man you were made to be
There is a design, an alignment, a cry
Of my heart to see
The beauty of love as it was made to be

I don't particularly enjoy much, if any, Christian music outside of the traditional church hymns (and Mass parts!). Mumford and Sons isn't a Christian band, but the aforementioned lyrics correlate so well with the love that I feel Jesus provides to all of us. No cover charge.

His love doesn't betray, dismay, or enslave us. It sets us free. It helps make me the person that the Father made me to be.

Chyeah, I'd say that's pretty awesome.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

El Tiburón

When I woke up this morning, I remembered my rather vivid dream. I have to share it with you because of its silliness in relation to me. But first, a little scene setting...

Yesterday my friend Becca, her mom, and I went to the Knoxville Zoo. Throughout our afternoon, we talked about our favorite animals. Every now and then I would interject with my favorite animals at the Indianapolis Zoo (see this post about "Marine Mammals" for even more background!). At some point, I brought up the shark touch pool at the Indy Zoo. Don't get too excited, they're just tiny little dog sharks.

But for me, of course, any shark interaction would be the coolest thing, ever! I'm still holding out for a visit with my favorites: Great White and Mako sharks. In case you haven't read my "about me", I love sharks. They're my favorite animal. YES. You know how much I love horses, but sharks are numero uno.

Anyway, I guess my subconscious was trying to explain just how ridiculous my unwavering devotion is to an animal that most everyone fears.

In my dream, Becca and I were at the shark touch pool. I put my hand in, and then one of the dog sharks bit me! It was of course not life threatening, but my bloody fingers were quite a sight to see. Others around us started freaking out and screaming. What did I do?

I held up my hand and proclaimed, "THIS IS SO COOL! A shark just bit me!" Meanwhile, Becca rolled her eyes. We were the only two not flipping out over a tiny little bite.

I woke up, and instantly I remembered something that several of my friends repeatedly told me throughout our school years together. They said that if someone ever shouted "Shark!" at a beach, I would be the only one who would run into the water while everyone else ran out of the water. My friends also say that I will die at the hands (uh, teeth?) of a shark. The only thing that will be left is one of my hands.

I chuckle as I write this. I love my friends, really. Their ability to be so creative and humorous just makes my day.

Of course, I truthfully don't think I would run into the water if someone spotted a shark swimming around the beach. I would be really excited though, not gonna lie.

Oh and don't mess with my sharks! Next to scientists who study them, I think I'm their staunchest defender. They really are my favorite animals.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Being Different Is Not An Excuse

Just because people are different, it doesn't make them less human than you. It doesn't make them evil. Being different isn't a bad thing.

Lately I've been apart of situations/conversations that make me want to curl up into a ball and hide away from humanity. Not forever. Just for those moments when I am inadvertently included in or just overhearing things that people say about other human beings.

Sometimes people don't have to actually say anything. Sometimes they do, and even what they say isn't what gets my's how they say it. I may not have seen the sneer on your face, but I sure as heck heard it in your voice.

I'm sorry that I don't agree with you that those people are evil. The breadth of folks who are those people confounds me. Is no one good enough  or worthy enough except others who think, look, act, talk, or walk just like you? They have to watch the same 24/7 news channel. They watch the same TV shows and movies. Read the same books. Listen to the same music, the same radio stations. They are of the same political party and persuasion as you. They go to the same worship place as you, believe in the same higher power(s) as you. Speak the same language as you.

Same. Same. Same. Same. Same.

Only then can they be good enough. If they're not quite carbon copies of you in action and thought, they may command only a small part of your attention, only a smidgen of your respect.

Because they speak Arabic, Spanish, Mandarin, English. Because they are Hindu, Jewish, Sunni Muslim, Shia Muslim, evangelical Christian, Catholic, Sikh, atheist, agnostic, Buddhist. Because they are European, African, American, Asian, Latino/a. Because they are poor, rich, middle-class. Because they are gay, straight, bi-sexual, trans-gender. Because they are Democrat, Republican, middle-of-the-fencer, none-of-the-above. Because they are sinful, saintly, righteous, unrighteous. Because you are whatever, whichever, whomever.

Because because because...they are not like you. They're different. Some you classify as evil. Some the media and our societies classify as bad or unworthy. Some you believe are terrible just because your granpappy and his granpappy before him said they were. Sometimes you do it because that's all you ever hear. But being different is not an excuse to hate one another.

You say you respect life and you profess faith in a God who loves all, yet you treat them with disdain. Then you try to get me to be just like you! It may not be overt, but I know it happens in small little doses. Tiny quips here and there.

But I won't crack. Though I am guilty of it at times, in big ways and small ways, I will try to not treat them like they are nothing, undeserving.

See, God put it in my heart to love all. To love my neighbors. To love my enemies. To love those people whom everyone else decides are unlovable.

Jesus ate and talked with people when everyone else said he shouldn't. He loved them.

He loved them. Unconditionally.

I want to treat others the way Jesus did. I want to love like Jesus did. Love like Jesus does. Love like He always will love.

Don't you want that, too?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

I'm Free!

Yeah I'm free, free fallin'...

Okay, not completely. I still have two days left of class, but all of the big stuff before Spring Break starts is over with. All that's left is to read for communications and read a little Thoreau for American lit, which I'm excited about.

This is a picture of my calendar which incorporates all of my big assignments for each class. At some point it turned into more than just a way for me to keep track of is now a countdown type of thing, so now I can officially say it is halfsy time! That is, I'm halfway through the semester :)

I'm sure all of 5 people will show up to class on Friday, and I'll be one of them. Even though break is right around the corner, I still don't like missing class unless I absolutely have to...that would be the nerd-goody-two shoes in me. That'll never die.

Being a good little pedestrian won't die off either. A police officer honked at my friend and me today while we were in the crosswalk. Once we got to the sidewalk, we turned to look at him, and he said, "Watch where you're walking next time." All I can say is, lol. I mean, we were in the middle of a crosswalk for crying out loud. We wouldn't have crossed the street if it wasn't safe. And you, as an officer of the law, should know that pedestrians have the right of way. Tee hee!

Today is Ash Wednesday! Not to be Captain Obvious, but it's just one of my favorite days of the year. I went to the 8a.m. Mass on campus, and in spite of the rainy day, my ashes have stayed on my forehead. They don't look like much of a cross anymore.

Funny thing about this picture, other than my face, is that I gave up swearing, or more specifically the entire range of swear words for Lent. Notice anything?

"You know you got something on your forehead?" Yes, yes I do...I wish when people did double takes or repeatedly stare at me that I had time to explain to them what the "something" is all about. Ash Wednesday and the Lenten season are incredibly meaningful and full of growth for me. In passing though, I rarely am ever afforded the opportunity to tell that other person that no, it's not dirt they're ashes. And this is why they are on my forehead...

C'est la vie, right? Though, I didn't have to explain what the ashes were for in my literature class. Apparently everyone I sit around is Catholic or they're Protestants who also put ashes on their foreheads or they just know the significance of today. That was actually really cool because then we all talked about today and Lent and what we were giving up or doing extra.

I leave you with a link to my Ash Wednesday post from last year, which sums up everything that I love about this day and then some: Just Dust.

Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Take A Minute

So it's been awhile since my last post. I don't really know why that happened, but I digress. I'm currently in the "I've got a million things to do for class" mode that inevitably is thrust upon every college student the week before Spring Break. I turned in a paper today, and I turn another one in tomorrow. I have an exam on Wednesday. Then I'm basically home free.

In lieu of lots of words, I wanted to share an awesome awesome awesome song with you, but alas, it has one word (the "n" word) that prevents me from sharing it. The rapper uses it one time. I bought the clean version from iTunes but can't find it anywhere on the internet. If I could find the clean version, I'd put it up here. If you want to check it out on your own, go to Youtube and listen to the song "Take A Minute" by K'naan.

Now you're thinking, how can the song be any good? Well, to me one bad apple doesn't ruin the other good apples, yo. My favorite lines from the song are:

"And any man who knows a thing knows he knows not a damn, damn thing at all" and "Dear Mama, you helped me write this by showing me to give is priceless"

That's insanely good. And powerful.

What's doubly cool, as you know I love a whole lot of interesting things, is that K'naan is a Somali-Canadian rapper.

You should also check out this film trailer, which will be screened on campus coming up in April. I'm so excited. I found "Take A Minute" while watching the trailer.

Bouncing Cats Trailer from Bouncing Cats on Vimeo.