Archive for the ‘Images’ Category

Amateur Wikipedia vandalism

March 3, 2008

Fulton Sheen would probably have laughed. This almost prompted me to sign up and do my first Wikipedia edit, but I resisted. I have faith that the “online community” will take care of itself, without my butting in.

fulton sheen

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Photo gig

November 14, 2007

Had my first paying photography gig last month—though it would more properly be called a “paying” gig, since I never got paid. Can’t make too much noise about it, though, since it was an informal thing set up by a friend. Glad I didn’t fuss about it, too, because I now have my second paying gig. I am praying that it’s not “paying” also.

For this one I rented a nice lens, a Canon 70-200 f2.8L IS. This lens means business. It’s also so heavy you would probably opt to go without photos if you had to take it on vacation with you. And if you have about $1600 you can own one!

No sweet jumps with this rig

Wal-Mart’s pushing the Osteen poison

November 12, 2007

After spending all weekend grappling with revising an essay, I figured a good balancing measure would be a 10 p.m. Sunday night trip to Wal-Mart. I was not disappointed. A brotha struck up a conversation with me in the DVD section over some action movie I hadn’t seen, and berated me for not having seen “300.” And the mullets never rest at Wal-Mart, be it Sunday night or any other time.

I saw two products that put the fear of God into me anew: One was a 2-CD set called “Thomas Kinkade: Handel’s Messiah.” I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. Oprah puts her stamp of approval on a book, or Kinkade on a CD, and people go out and start reading and listening.
kinkade handel’s messiah
Reading and listening are good things, especially when the material is first-rate, as it is in the Handel case. And the Kinkadians might get their taste expanded in a healthy way. I guess I hate to see Handel presented as if he had to be endorsed by TK in order to have credibility.

Wal-Mart is also pushing Joel Osteen’s new book in a big way: Become a Better You. (I saw two giant sales displays in the store: one was for Osteen, the other was for the movie “I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry.”) I flipped through Osteen’s book, and quickly came to realize that it’s a collection of reworked sermons from the past couple of years. The chapter that gave it away was the one on your “bloodline.” One of my favorite Osteen moments was when he gave that sermon: he looked out at his stadium full of 10,000+ people, of whom many were normal and even sub-normal in various respects. He said to them, “I don’t believe I’m looking at ordinary people . . . I’m looking at thoroughbreds.”

To quote Christopher Hitchens from his debate last month with Dinesh D’Souza, “gag me with a spoon.” But Joel knows what the people come to hear, and he gives it to them. He seems to think that one can “choose” whether to be sick or healthy. In his new book, he talks of a woman whose debilitating disease disappeared. This was not a miracle, but a result of her choosing to “live under the blessing” and not “under the curse.” (quoted from memory). Name it and claim it! I think we should be thankful that the world does not work that way.