i (don’t) <3 u … ;-)

•June 12, 2008 • 3 Comments

Nevada governor Jim Gibbons finds himself caught up in a controversy that captures the nuances of political scandal in a modern age. The governor, whose marriage is in disrepair, used his state-owned cell phone to send 867 text messages over several weeks to a woman he claims is just a friend and his wife claims is their source of disunion. Sadly, the state cell phone plan does not cover texting, so the governor footed a $130 texting bill.

My first question: Exactly how many text messages add up to “infatuation”? If he had sent only 433 texts over one month (an average of 14.4 texts per day) could he legitimately claim they were really “just friends”? The governor said text topics ranged from matters of state to her kids to “what was the latest issue with her dog.” Is discussing a child more intimate than discussing a dog? If he sent 652 dog-related messages and only 215 child-related messages, could he still say they were only friends? Or do dog-related messages reveal a knowledge of the mundanities of someone’s everyday life that clearly signals a far-more-than-casual intimacy? Should a serious examination take emoticons into account?

My second question: What kind of state cell phone plan does not cover texting?


Why I will burn with Vivienne Westwood in hell

•June 10, 2008 • 13 Comments

Well, count me among the Christians who relish sexual perversion — the “less conscientious adults” who don’t “take the call of Christ seriously” and listen to the “satanic counsel” and “slick words” of Christianity Today.

I watched, and liked, Sex and the City.

This means I should, according to Ted Slater’s astoundingly sanctimonious Boundless column, repent before I burn in a hellfire stoked with Carrie Bradshaw and all her Manolos. But I side with CT’s Camerin Courtney instead:

Most of the few Christian voices speaking to the growing single segment of the population offer ten easy steps to find our soulmate. … Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda, however, show how challenging it really can be for intelligent, accomplished, and admittedly neurotic women to find lasting love. They, unlike many Christians, don’t insult my intelligence. Instead they speak to the complexities of relationships in a postmodern age—addressing baby lust, the mommy wars, sexual temptation, dating outside your “class,” commitment-phobia, the reluctant desire to be rescued by a man, and the simultaneous fear that you’ll lose your own hard-won identity in the process.

My friends and I — all intelligent, accomplished and absolutely neurotic women — watch that show when the evangelical subculture in which we live gets a bit too suffocating, when other Christians take for granted that our careers are only a way to mark time until marriage and motherhood, when true love waits (“And wait. And waits.”), and yeah, when we crave the sight of Givenchy and Dior.

You see, some Christian women actually live in the twenty-first century and share the SATC women’s struggles. The show may not always give the right answers, but it doesn’t pretend to. And sometimes unlike the church, it always treats those struggles realistically, humorously, and hopefully.

HT: Alissa.

Huck Helps Guy Up-Chuck!

•June 9, 2008 • 6 Comments

In the mainstream media’s speculation over whether Barack Obama is an enlightened being with a “powerful luminosity, a unique high-vibration integrity” and “a Lightworker, that rare kind of attuned being who …. can actually help usher in a new way of being on the planet,” it is, of course, displaying its bias again.

What about Mike Huckabee as Messiah?

In an underreported miraculous act at a luncheon last weekend, Huckabee yanked a state senator from the grip of death just by touching the man. The raised man went on to spread the news about him all over that region. He testified to the Palmetto Scoop, “We all know that [Huckabee] is pro-life, and once again he has lived up to it,” and bore witness to the NewsObserver.com, “To me this is just typical Mike Huckabee … He’s just a decent fun guy who cares about people.”

Huckabee’s daughter cried out in the wilderness that this is not the first time Huckabee has stretched forth his hand and saved lives, proving a gross understatement the Free Republic’s naming of Huckabee as “savior to at least one.”

And we esteemed him not?

HT: Recherche

Biding with Baristi

•June 4, 2008 • 6 Comments

“Bide a while in a coffee bar. Who do you see? What thoughts are being thought? Where do these thoughts go? Imagine … And to think it’s only a coffee bar …”

~Inexplicable and inspiring quotation on the wall of Coffee Republic in Oxford, UK

I tend to fall for my baristi.

I think it’s because they’re there for me in my most vulnerable moments — when I’m stumbling through that bleary morning haze, thirsting for energy — gently asking if I would like one shot or two. When I’m blind with sleep, the cute boy with the quirky hat and the expert hand plying the lever that pours black gold just looks so sexy.

There was the aforementioned burly, musically tattooed barista. There was another scrawny, scrappy also musically tattooed barista — perhaps the only bearded man I’ve ever loved. And there’s the hot boy at the Tea Lounge, who undercharged me on purpose I’m sure.

One day a barista startled me into giving him my number by informing me that I reminded him of his psychology teacher. A week later I saw him at another coffee shop and we walked down the street and had lunch, during which we swapped astrological signs, after which he told me that he saw the earth in his sister’s brown eyes and the sky-blue in mine. And the sky, he added, has no end.

I was about to tell him that I saw the burnished coffee beans of Ecuador in his. Then I remembered that his was the exact poetic crap my father always told me not to listen to, and I reflected that the list of free wi-fi spots, unlike the sky, is not endless and that if I dated and dumped my baristi I might very well come to the end.

So instead I said, “Well … thanks!” And resolved henceforth to love baristi from afar.

Flatbush, Brooklyn

•May 16, 2008 • 7 Comments

The great thing about my new neighborhood is how friendly everyone is! Today I passed a guy who told me, “You gotta beautiful smile, baby … But you need an ass.”

So true. Thanks for pointing that out.

Tattoos II

•May 15, 2008 • 2 Comments

Better than a treble clef, a deaths-head eighth note, or a suicidal teddy bear by far:

A Hillary Clinton tattoo.

A Hillary Clinton tattoo. That’d show ’em!

HT: Andrew Sullivan.


•May 14, 2008 • 7 Comments

Every time I go to a certain coffee shop, I order my Americano from a barista with a delicate little treble clef tattooed on his big neck. I like the treble clef – it’s a curvy and sinuous, feminine symbol. I want that tattoo.

My sister thinks I’d regret a tattoo when I’m old and fat. But I think I’ll probably stay 110 pounds and never get flabby forever, and never have kids who would use my small, subtle tattoo to justify their big and obnoxious tattoos.

I want a tattoo when the task of writing stories that seem to satisfy no one – least of all the people who pay to read them – wears me into a thin and two-dimensional, flat version of myself. I think I’d take a quiet satisfaction knowing that my morally upright readers have no idea they are getting the news from a girl who has etched an extremely edgy deaths-head eighth note (or perhaps a suicidal teddy bear) into her hip.

But I hear it’s unwise to get permanent body art when you’re blind-drunk on job woes. So I console myself with a new belly-button ring and find when I put it in that it still seems too big and blingy. Then I remember that I pierced my bellybutton in a similar state of passive-aggressive rebellion and decide to handle my issues in a less drastic way — like a cathartic post on this blog, which at least I sometimes like — and get a tattoo on my flaccid neck some day when I’m rebelling against something else — being old and fat and retired.