Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Why is it cool to be unintelligent??

I ran across this video this morning.  It's of Reza Aslan being interviewed by Fox News about his new book.  Seriously, watch it.

Now, it is made PAINFULLY obvious by this video a few things:

  1. The interviewer didn't do much research into the book
  2. the interviewer dind't do much research into the man
  3. Reza Aslan is a biblical scholar who holds 4 degrees (Wikipedia has these listed: A BA from Santa Clara University, A Master in Theologial Studies from the Harvard Divinity School, An MFA from the University of Iowa's Writer's Workshop and a PhD from UC Santa Barbara)
  4. ALL the newscaster cared about was the fact that the is Muslim.
The research, and his schooling didn't matter.  She seemed not even prepared to entertain the fact that he's done research.  It gets so bad that he starts to actually talk down to her.  


Because somewhere along the way America stopped valuing intelligence.

I started seeing it at the beginning of my teaching career, when the boys in the schools I was substituting in declared that being literate was akin to being disastrously uncool.  Yes, I said literate.  These boys declared that being able to read wouldn't help them to play professional sports, or get on a reality TV show.

Gone are the days when people could have intelligent debate.  Society seem to have gotten to a point where the person that says the most damning thing seems to win the argument.  Soundbites are more important than solid research and scholarship.

Now, don't get me wrong.  We have intelligent people in the world!  There are even intelligent celebrities!  (Natalie PortmanMayim Bialik, and Danica McKellar come immediately to mind.)  And apparently there are many geeky, nerdy people in Hollywood.  Example 1, Example 2, Example 3, Example 4 (seen to the right)

So there is hope.  Intelligence isn't lost.  But it does seem to be completely unimportant to many social groups.

Well, if you need me, I'm going to watch the extended Daily Show interview.  And maybe do some research.

Monday, July 29, 2013

I Went to a Concert!

Friday I got off of work early, and went to see the Dave Matthews Band in Virginia Beach.

Now, keep in mind a few things....
A.) It was a Friday
B.) It was in Virginia Beach.

This meant that the maybe 45 minute drive took 2 1/2 hours.


So, we got there and I found my cousin, who is a sound engineer.  (Thankfully he sound booth is in the arena, and not backstage).

I also got some wine, then settled in for the concert.

 We had wonderful seats, as the fuzzy picture can attest to.  Row N, right in the middle.

The concert was wonderful, but we left before the end.  I'd rather miss a song or two than spent three hours trying to get out of the place!

The set list:

The rest of the weekend?  Mostly laundry.

In fact, I have a mountain of it to put away, and one load to wash and dry.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A new edition to the archaic monarchy... or why I like escapist TV

I have friends that are royal watchers, fascinated by everything they do.  I have friends that just don't understand the fascination.  Some want more news stories.  Some want less news stories.  Some want more Disney movies, because the news is always depressing (that one is usually me.)

I'm the person that got up before dawn to watch the royal wedding.  I recorded it, watched it while breakfast cooked.  I turned on the live feed at work to watch the kiss on the balcony.


It's fantasy for me.  I'm never going to be that person.  Or live that life.  Hell, there's a better than average chance that I might not outlive my paying off my student loan.  But I can always dream.  When times are tough.  When I'm not sure that I'll have enough gas money to get to work.  When I'm in pain, but have no money to cover the doctor's co-pay (It's a chiropractor... such a first world problem), I watch the Princess Diaries.  It's silly, and juvenile, but when the world is too scary, and money is too tight, I can wish that, like Mia, I have relatives that will pay my debts... and give me a sweet castle to live in.

I think that's why I'm an avid TV watcher.  I need the escape from reality.  The news is full of corrupt politicians.  Elected officials that want to deny basic human rights.  (And we've all heard about the guy running for Governor that wants to make giving a blow job a felony... right?)  Heck, around April I avoid church, because it's awash in the Earth Day global climate change stuff.  (I'm all about the environment, but honestly, too much talk about it makes me want to slit my wrists)

My television, book and movie choices come in a few varieties.  Girly.  Sci-Fi/Fantasy.  Historical.  Dystopian.  Girly is pure escapism.  The other stuff?  It shows that it can always get A LOT worse.  or amazingly better.

In other news:  they cancelled Bunheads. Like so many other shows, it was gone too soon.  It was smart, funny, and had great heart.

And I SO want to be Sutton Foster when I grow up.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going have a Breaking Pointe/ So You Think You Can Dance/America's Got Talent triple feature.

Right after I walk the dog....

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Servin' on a Jury

Yup, that's where I was last week.  Myself and 13 other individuals heard a case involving drugs, guns and a double homicide.  It was rough.

Though the make up of the jury was really interesting.  One lone guy and 13 women.  I think like 9 of those women where rather religious African American ladies.  We prayed before we deliberated.  We prayed before we put out the verdict.  The ladies actually organized a deliberation pot luck.  I'm not kidding!  Apparently we were the most talkative Jury they've ever seen!

And the worst part?  I have to go through jury selection once more before my term is over.  It's like adding insult to injury!

So, What I learned from being on a Jury

  1. I have a whole new respect for the Zimmerman jurors.
  2. It was like the most surreal episode of Law and Order EVER
  3. Some of those experts could cure insomnia (Not that we didn't pay attention!  We did!)
  4. Not the Forensic Pathologist!  She knew how to explain it and not let our attention wander
  5. I had no idea that the entire experience would be that tiring
  6. I don't have enough summer business wear
  7. But the Commonwealth's Attorneys could dress.  I loved their outfits!
Thankfully, I can go back to work on Monday.  At least for a little while.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The weekend that was..... or The Fleas Strike Back!

 When we last met, I was starting to wage the war against the fleas!  At stake, the Misty!

Well, I vacuumed, did 4 loads of laundry.  Then I called the Spousal Equivalent to have him pick up Comfortis.   He came home, and I realized that Banfield almost made a tragic mistake.  They gave him Trifexis, which is the flea pill mixed with a heartworm pill (that she had two weeks ago).

I know that most of this is my fault.  I should have fought harder to get her the pills.  Now I know, it's flea pills and not topical flea stuff in the summer.

So after getting the pill thing straightened out, I did this:

Oh yes.  I took a nap.  I also asked for pizza for dinner.

But I have a cleaner house, a really queen kitchen, and clean laundry.  I just have to put it away!

Yes.... and now it's Monday.  Tomorrow I call in for Jury duty again.  We'll see how it goes.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Invasion of the fleas!

At the beginning of July, I used a topical flea treatment on Misty.  I had already given her a heartworm pill, so the flea treatment/heartworm pill was out, and they were out of the flea treatment pill.  Let's hop the vet can help me!

Last night, July 12th... FAR less than the month she was supposed to be protected, I found a flea on the itchy puppy.

This morning, after breakfast I sprung into action!  I washed the puppy, using dish soap.  That was a recommendation by the Vet, y'all!  I suds-ed her up, and let he pace around the bathroom for 15 minutes.  then I rinsed.  Then she ran around the apartment like this:

(Ok, it's an old picture, but it always looks the same: her wet, and rubbing on every surface.)

Then I sprayed the carpet and vacuumed.  And I'm not really supposed to vacuum, but I did it anyways.  The Spousal Equivalent is out seeing Pacific Rim, and I didn't want to wait for his return.

The blankets from various parts of the house are washing.  I also need to take the vacuum canister right out to the dumpster and dispose of it.

Not bad for 9:30 am.  Now to sort the rest of the laundry.  the theme today: washwashwash!

Friday, July 12, 2013

I've been lazy and it has to stop!

I do this all the time.  I let my house go, and it gets messy.  So messy!

This weekend, besides the mentioned mentioned vacuuming, I also need need to put clean laundry away, sort the dirty laundry and give my kitchen some attention.

My goal for the next week is to get ahead of the clutter.  I have a version of the FlyLady plan, where I do 10 or 15 minutes of work in each room of the house a day.  I need to just fricking do it!

I have also declared my fridge the place where food goes to die.  I ran across this blog post on Pinterest.  I need to hit some dollar stores for some bins!  I also need to do some serious tossing out of things!

My other goal next week is to take the week and do this workout, 10-15 minutes at a time.  Plus the half mile, or mile walkie with Misty.

Look at that face!

Wish me luck!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Who knew how destructive a small pink pill was

See that?  It helps IMMENSELY when your eyes are so itchy you're afraid you might gouge them out by accident.  It helps when you're just itchy in general.  (Ever have the inside of your lungs itch?  It should be against the Geneva Convention!!)

Last night the need to dust and vacuum (Seriously, it's first on Saturday's agenda) and the fact that I forgot to run the dehumidifier as much as I should... I had to take Benadryl.

Well, the itching stopped.  Along with all cognitive activity. Seriously.  I was out like a light.

And woke up this morning, feeling like a zombie.  My brain was all fuzzy, my eyes were red and raw.  My mouth was dry.  A zombie.

But no.

I have a hangover.

From Benadryl.

Now, if you will excuse me, I'll be hunting up some coffee.  And water.  A lot of water.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

A week's reprieve

Well, I called last night.  No Jury Duty this week.  I need to call again on Tuesday.

The Department Chair and my Office Manager are both on vacation, so instead of Jury Duty, I'm sitting in the office by myself.

It's not that I don't want to have Jury Duty... it's the not knowing that is very disconcerting!

I have an audio book on in the background.  I have a feeling that the one I'm listening to will be over before the end of the day.  I haven't loaded the 3rd Dresden book onto my phone yet.

I'm sure I can find something else on my phone to keep me company.

I need to look at my expenses for the next pay cycle, and budget.  But that is rather depressing.  (I need an oil change, and those are expensive!)   I believe I've bought everything that I need, including a bathing suit that in all probability I won't ever wear.

But enough of the plotting, and wishing, and wondering.  It's back to work.  I have books to scan.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Defiance: Everything is Broken..... yes, yes it is....

Last night Defiance wrapped up it's first season.

And man... what a season!

let's take a few minutes to recap what happened to our intrepid band of pioneers:

Nolan and Irisa:

They were travelers.  Lost.  Two people from two different species trying to fit in somewhere.  Well, Nolan shoots before he thinks.  And Irisa is troubled by psychic visions.  Visions that we now know are from a metal all powerful object that is embedded inside of her.  Nolan grows some smarts towards the end, and has Amanda fire him as law keeper.  And Irisa saves Nolan's life by jumping into the glowing super weapon.. her life in exchange for his.  Nolan we know is alive.  It's too soon to tell about Irisa.

Amanda and Kenya Rosewater:

Amanda was the mayor of Defiance.  Her sister ran the brothel.  Well, that all changed.  Kenya was seemingly killed by Stahma.  Amanda lost the election to Datak Tarr.  Both of them meant well.  Both of them tried to do right by the people under them.

My question, going into season 2... what will happen to Amanda.  E-Rep seems to have taken over Defiance.  And they have it out for her...

The Tarrs:

Datak is the town mob boss.  He's from a low caste in Castithan society.  Stahma is from a high caste.  This means that Datak is constantly trying to be the better man.  He wants to be a high society man, one that follows the old ways, one that is obsessed with honor.  And as we saw, his temper can get the best of him (when he killed the E-Rep guy with a letter opener).  Stahma is the smart one, and could rule the world... if she weren't a woman.  And Alak is married to a human.  A relationship I'd like to see more of.  (That's the interesting thing to me... those two together.)

Doc Yewll.... she's the Josef Mengele of the Indogene.  She has a history of horrific medical experiments.  She even killed the ex-mayor... who was actually an Indogene in disguise.  I'm unsure of her.  She was experimenting with the metal twisty thing of doom.  But she seems to want to save lives.  Especially her own.

Season 2 of Defiance will change everything.   I'm curious as to how the game will change the plot.  I'm curious as to how things will change.  But I know what I want more of.

  • I want more of Alak and Christie.  I want to see how they adapt.
  • And I want to see more of the alien culture.  For me, that's the most facinating part of this series.
But what we know is that in 12 short episodes, every person in the show is changed.  Significantly.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Nothing is easy when it comes to Jury Duty

So we all know what happened last week:

Yes, the Fourth of July.  I had plans.  Plans changed.  Stuff happened.  It was a nice respite from the beginning of the week.  The theme of last week was: "You Just Can't Do Anything Right!"  We've all had those weeks.  Mine was last week.  Thankfully there's tequila at the house.

Friday was interesting.  The BFF came over to watch a movie.  And then we went to lunch at Busch Gardens.  You heard me.  Busch Gardens.  I've got a season pass!

We ended up there the next morning too.  And the Spousal Equivalent actually got me on a ride.  Yes, the log ride.  The minute I sat in the car I realized it was a bad idea.  I told all the ride operators along the ride that this was a bad idea.  It was a bad idea as I plummeted to my certain death.

But I didn't die.  I got soaked.  I'm sticking to the Tea Cups.

This week's drama is Jury Duty.  I have it.  Jury duty is rather like waiting for a mother to go into labor.  You have to be prepared.  You have to have a bag packed.  You have to be ready to go.... but you never know when...  I called last night and it says to report on Wednesday.  We'll see what it says when I call tomorrow night.

It's a hot one in Hampton Roads this week.  Stay cool everyone!