Archive for July, 2007

NYC day 2

July 30, 2007

Bad weather day: after an amazing few hours with the dinosaur bones, North American birds, primates, meteorites, minerals, and crystals, we ended up walking 1.62 miles in heavy rain, sans umbrellas—from 79th Street at Central Park West to the Apple Store at the southeast corner of the park. Miserable. Thankfully, I had my All-Weather camera case with me (i.e., a plastic grocery bag).

Went to 5:30 Mass at St. Patrick’s cathedral. What a beautiful building, and such precise craftsmanship. Took a cab down to Strand Books, and before leaving, drove down to the WTC site.


Car Talk hilarity

July 30, 2007

I heard this on the radio weekend before last and it’s been cracking me up ever since. At the end of the “Car Talk” show, the two hosts read the credits for those involved in the show’s production, and then add a long list of funny fake credits with fake names.

The best one: Ralph Kramden impersonator: Mohammed Ahamana Hamana

After hearing it on the radio I had been remembering it imperfectly as “Ralph Kramden impersonator for the Indian subcontinent: Brahmina Homina Homina”—which is also pretty funny. (But did they say anything about India?)

A longer list is available at the Car Talk website. Funny stuff, check it out.


July 29, 2007

First day in NYC:

  • Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine
  • Cloisters Museum
  • Street vendor hot dog (best deal in the city)
  • Empire State Building, 102nd and 86th floor observation areas
  • Pizza (with longhorn horns mounted on the wall—I swear, I didn’t know going in)
  • Times Square

The only shop in Times Square I went in was Toys “R” Us. I’ll post some photos and you’ll get some sense, but it was so over the top you have to be there to fully understand it. THEY HAVE A FERRIS WHEEL.

Friday in Philly

July 28, 2007

Today I took a guided tour of the Masonic Temple.


Take a cheesy online tour here. (To be fair, it’s a very informative online tour, and the photos are actually pretty good, but nothing beats seeing it in person.)

Paradox at work

July 25, 2007

Eating lunch today at the Taco Shack I saw a TimeWarner high-speed internet commercial. It urged you to buy their product so that you could “share your individuality . . . with people just like you.”

Heading to New Jersey tomorrow morning for a long weekend of sightseeing and funhaving. Take it easy, yo, and I’ll see you next time.

Inside the world’s smallest church

July 25, 2007

Inside the world’s smallest church

Originally uploaded by Curly Couch

Click for more pictures of this one-of-a-kind institution!

The signs on the door said “OPEN” and “Come on in, WE’RE OPEN,” but nobody was around. It was also hotter than hell in there. So hot that after taking 3 or 4 pictures, sweat was blurring my vision. I’d like to see this place at night (there’s a lightbulb cross on the side of the trailer), but it’s 100+ miles from home and really, it would need to be significantly more awesome before I would drive that far without some other business in the area.

Why the law of nature is not necessarily normative for human beings

July 25, 2007

Was browsing the website for the American Museum of Natural History, which currently has an exhibit on frogs. I laughed out loud when I read the following description of the African bullfrog:

African bullfrogs grow up to eight inches in diameter and eat almost anything that moves. They are able to live without food or water for months by digging underground. When the rains arrive, they emerge to eat and mate. The male guards the tadpoles, which swim around him for protection. While protecting the swimming tadpoles, he also feeds on them. After metamorphosis, froglets often eat their smaller siblings.

I have read arguments that homosexuality is okay because we can see it happening among animal species. Apply this rule universally and you would get a sticky-fingered cashier trying to defend himself in court by pointing to the African bullfrog . . . protect what’s given to your charge, but help yourself, too!

Not my regular church

July 24, 2007

Was visiting a friend in the Dallas area this weekend, so my foot crossed the threshold of a Protestant church for the first time in several months. (I have been in a few different ones during non-worship hours more recently, for concerts or sightseeing.) Doctrinally, I found nothing objectionable about this church. But their style of worship ain’t mine . . . a seeming eternity of repetitious praise songs before a nearly hour-long sermon. Each song lasted a good 5 minutes, which, in the absence of instrumental sections to relieve the barrage of words words words, is technically forever.

The sermon was more words words words. In fact, there wasn’t a single part of the service that wasn’t words. Again, I’m glad that they were sound and sensible words, but the divine can also be met in silence, and in the nonverbal.

Here’s part of the music. I only post it because the animation of the guy in the front row amuses me, and the two little girls are kind of funny, too.

Jesus Christ’s business card

July 23, 2007

Roland S. Martin, do your homework

July 19, 2007

I was blissfully unaware of this man’s existence until this morning, when I read on a couple of different blogs about his venemous and ludicrous attack on Benedict XVI, prompted by the statement on the Church released by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith last week.

For an excellent summary, see the Newsbusters piece. For the piece I’m talking about now, go here.

My point here is that anyone who has studied the Catechism, as Martin claims he did, or who has paid any attention to the CDF document, as Martin may be presumed to have done, since he’s belittling it, would not have made the obvious blunders that Roland Martin makes in his CNN piece.