Friday, April 22, 2011

Please Rise...

...and welcome the President of the United States, Donald John Trump.

He's Got Everything You Need
Instead of allowing the cream to rise to the top, the U.S. presidential election process allows for some of the dregs to rise up as well.

It's virtually impossible to get elected the President of the United States without two important components...a huge ego and a way of readily raising millions and millions of dollars.

The ego part is obvious...the job sucks the life out of its incumbents and requires them and their families to live under the constant protection of the secret services. I can't imagine it's such a great lifestyle. Anyone that's willing to go through all the mudslinging and vitriol it takes to become president, has to really believe that they can leave a legacy that will allow them to live on in history.

The dollars part is rather obvious.

Since Donald Trump has both those characteristics, I say he's a perfect candidate for president.

Plus it would put some level of finality on the thoughts lately that our country has been exposed to way too much lead paint or pesticides in the last century, and we've created an entire population of dimwits.

Current Crocheting
It doesn't look like it, but I've actually gotten quite a bit of additional border done on the crochet baby blanket.

Plus, I've been able to take a couple of decent photos of the project to give you a sense about what it really looks like.

I'm just going to do a couple more rounds and then a simple shell border in the orange color.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Have You Been Saved?

Does "faith" preclude questioning? Can the truly faithful examine their faith, or is that too doubtful to a be a true follower? Can someone be more Christian/Jewish/Muslim/Atheist/Buddhist than someone else?

What is Faith?
I guess faith comes down to putting a stake in the ground and saying "This is what I believe." I honestly don't think anyone has ever fully accepted any faith without some conscious decision, although I do think there are a lot of blind followers of various faiths that once they've made a decision, now accept an enormous amount of belief based on what their minister/Mullah/rabbi/congregation tell them.

I was sitting in front of two men on a plane a week or two ago, and the conversation went something like this:
Pasty White Guy 1: "What are you reading?"
Pastier White Guy 2: "I'll tell you more about it in a week or two when I've been able to get past the first chapter."
Pasty White Guy 1: "What's the name of the book?"
Pastier White Guy 2: "It's Christian you know what that is?"
Pasty White Guy 1: "Sure, I read it often."
Pastier White Guy 2: "So, you consider yourself a Christian?"
Pasty White Guy 1: "Yes."
Pastier White Guy 2: "For how long?"
Pasty White Guy 1: "Since January 14, 1983. My wife brought me to Christ and our son has since been saved as well, but our daughter is still pretty troubled."
Pastier White Guy 2: "Both my children have accepted Jesus."
The conversation went on to delve into which denomination and quizzing each other on the meaning of various bible passages. As with many manly conversations, it became one with more than a little bit of competition as to who was a better christian.

Overall, I thought the conversation was rather odd, but it got me to thinking about how some folks think about their faith, and how the possibility of examining faith has become almost unthinkable for some.

Suffice it to say, I think about it often.

Current Crocheting
I think I can confidently say that the crochet baby blanket has been "saved".

You may not realize it from my crappy iPhone photograph, but the overall blanket is starting to look quite fine. It really only needed a bit more size and Katheryn's comment was spot-on, in that starting the border with the orangey color seemed to work quite well.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Both Sides Now

I've always related to the Joni Mitchell song...I'm either indecisive or I'm open-minded...I could go either way on it.

Being a Chameleon...Phony or Adaptive?
I've always had a talent for fitting into my environment, and I often start taking on characteristics of the way I perceive the locals to be.

Is this being a phony or is it a skill that should be applauded?

Often times, I think it's a bit of both.

I certainly have a desire to fit in and be liked. I would never compromise certain core beliefs to do so, but I would definitely go out of my way to make others comfortable around me by trying to be more like them in certain ways.

For instance, if someone I worked with on a project acted in a way that was ignorant about my sexual orientation, but didn't intend to be hurtful, I could easily ignore it, joke about it or try to be educational, depending on what I thought the person might be open to. However, if a person said something that I considered to be hateful our hurtful about the same topic, I would definitely make an issue out of it, even if it possibly meant damaging any chance of getting along later.

Whishy-washy is a way of being that I might not recommend highly, but it seems to work for me.

Current Knitting/Crocheting
In almost a week since the last photos of the Asherton Baby Blanket, I haven't made a whole lot of progress.

I'm almost finished with the second row of color-blocks, and I was going to wait until I had started the third before blogging, but I had to get a post out there this week.

I also brought the crochet baby blanket with me to see if I could possibly make this into something I like.

You can see the blue edging I started at the's just not working. You can also get a sense of the size of the blanket based on the Canadian $5 bill (see, I adapt so quickly!) so I'll try out some other options and see whether I can salvage this project.

Readers' Comments/Questions
Leslie writes, "What I love about the baby blanket pattern is that it is reversible...what yarn are you using. I love the colors, soft but not pastel!"

It's Debbie Bliss Cashmerino...that's what I liked about the colors too...vibrant, but still child-like.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Canada...No Longer The Safe Haven

You can't imagine the number of times I've said, "If "such and such" happens, I'll move to Canada."

The Gun Lobby Is Insidious
Now that the gun lobby has scared U.S. politicians into avoiding gun control in the U.S. at all costs, it's trying to do the same thing in Canada. The Canadian Prime Minister, Harper, has vowed to get rid of their country's gun registry if the next election gives him enough conservative support in Parliament. In the interim, he's ignoring the law for anyone that hasn't complied with it, by extending an amnesty for people who haven't registered their long guns.

Why in the name of all that's sacred, would Canadians want the gun situation in their country to be like it is here in the states? Why is it so objectionable to have to register your long guns?

Selling out his country's safe record on gun control, and the safety of it's citizens so he can try and garner conservative votes is nothing short of reprehensible.

The people that support guns in the U.S. basically say the honest people need guns to defend themselves from the dishonest people who have them.

If Canada can keep their dishonest citizens from getting guns to begin with, they'll be WAY ahead of the states in keeping their countrymen safe.

Besides, where the hell will I move if they ever elect Sarah Palin as president in this country?

Current Knitting
I think I've done a total of 4 rows of knitting since the last blog entry, but here's a photograph anyway.

For folks who have asked about the pattern for this blanket, it's actually a pattern for a scarf that I've modified because I thought it would make a great baby blanket.  The pattern is free on Ravelry, and it's called the Asherton Scarf on SMARIEK Knits Blog.

Monday, April 04, 2011

A Special Year

Does anyone know why this should be a special birthday and year for me?

QueerJoe Trivia
I can't imagine anyone would actually remember this little OCD tidbit factoid about me. But a while ago, in an obscure bloge entry, I wrote about numerology, and how I consider the numerological 7 to be a good omen for me.

For those of you who don't know anything about numerology, you basically take any number, or date...or in this case age, and add up all the digits. If the resulting sum is more than one digit, you add up all those digits, and continue to do that until the sum is a one digit number. So, for instance, if you take my birthday, it would result in a numerological 5:

04/04/1959 - 0+4+0+4+1+9+5+9 = 32 and 3+2=5

Most numerologists (are there such people?) would say that numerological 5's should be more lucky for me, but I've always felt luckier with 7's.

Since today I'm 52 years old, I consider this to be a lucky year.

Crazy I know, but I guess it's no crazier than some of the religious mysticism that I grew up with.

So, I celebrate my birthday so far by having a quad-shot, grande, soy latte in the Minneapolis airport, halfway en route back up to Edmonton today.

We'll see what else the day brings.

Current Crochet/Knitting
So, I finished the crocheted main section of the blue, green and red baby blanket, and I've tried three different edgings on it so far, and I hate them all. In fact, I don't really like the blanket very much at all.

I need to either come up with an edging that makes the blanket a decent size and makes it look interesting, or I may just rip it out and do something completely different.

I did pick up the other knitted baby blanket and did some additional work on that.

I'm liking this blanket quite a bit, but find that working on three colors on a plane can be cumbersome. Two weeks ago, I dropped a ball of yarn at the end of the moving walkway in the Minneapolis airport and it dragged behind me for about 10 feet before somone got my attention to pick it up.

Readers' Comments/Questions
NC Knitter Beaer writes, "Well, I liked the previous blanket. And I like this one. Which does Nico prefer?"

He's indifferent to both...and he hasn't weighed in too strongly on the knit one either. Fickle cat...we sometimes call him Nicolas and when he gets like this, we call him Fickolas.