Friday, February 29, 2008

I'd talk about the Academy Awards, but except for Tilda Swinton winning for Michael Clayton--nothing was really all that surprising. I LOVED the performance from Once though!

I started working with Maryland Shakespeare Festival last week. I adore my day job now! I leave the house at 7am and get home at 6pm--except during the 4 nights I teach classes from 6-10:30pm. Needless to say, my body was hammered and unprepared to ward off illness.

I have been sick for the past three days. It's horrible! I haven't felt this helpless in ages. I kept bursting into tears yesterday everytime I was faced with a decision! Should I take VA-7 or the beltway? Should I get out of the car, or try and sleep longer? Stupid decisions that on any other day wouldn't have required much thought.

The artistic director at MSF asked me if I'd like to do their summer show. Again--that whole decision thing--luckily I didn't cry. I just cowered behind Spencer and said--"I'll do it if he does it!" Which makes total sense because I'm not about to drive an hour to rehearsals without my carpool buddy.

He's not doing it, so I'm not doing it! Decision made!

I went to teach class after rehearsal last night. I dragged my sorry body into the classroom and sat bundled up in my coat and scarf, shivering, while heat radiated from my eyeballs. I began to cough, and realized that I was being idiotic. I sent them home early and made my way to my car, throwing up every 3 or 4 feet.

So far I've lost 13 pounds. It's kind of exciting!!

(I'm kidding.)

(sort of.)

It's been a splendid week otherwise though. I'm enjoying all of the rehearsals, and the chance to act again just makes me giddy! And Spencer is proving to be a fantastic new friend. It's wonderful how Heavenly Father brings people into your life at just the right moment. He's really been a blessing.

I should hit the hay. I've gotta nip this thing in the bud before next week starts up!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

So, i haven't truly blogged in what feels like forever. I am sitting in my Ethics classroom. It's just after 10pm, and everyone left in a flurry after we discussed the define ways to decide what Natural Rights were. It appears that they all have plans and places and places to go.

I have been up since 8am working non-stop until just now. I know 8am isn't exactly the crack of dawn, but I'm tired. The day is past, and I am done.

I am excited to go home and just crash in my uncomfortable futon and try and sleep away my stress before the first day of rehearsals start tomorrow. I really don't know how I'm going to pull off the 19 hour days that I'm going to be pulling next week.

But I'm feeling blessed. Spencer is going to let me take over his acting studio, which should bring in some serious extra dough.

Not that I have the time!

Anywhooooo, happy Valentine's day friends! I'm happy for those of you who care about this holiday and who are lucky enough to have someone to share it with. I'm just happy that I don't have any strong feelings towards anyone right now. It seems that when feelings are involved--people have a tendency to hurt mine.

Here's to being alone! I can go buy myself some chocolates--thank you very much!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Interesting comment on Obama

Posted by Contrarian at 2/5/08 1:03 p.m.

I'm white, retired Navy, grew up in the deepest of the Mississippi Delta as part of a strongly conservative (and largely racist) family. One would expect someone with my background to be a neo-con...but when I see Barack Obama, I see someone whose life exposes the lies of the racist dogma I was once taught (and once believed). The platforms on which Obama and Clinton are not greatly dissimilar...but anyone who knows the depth of the racism of the Deep South should recognize what President Obama will mean to our future as a nation. I think it's time to try to finish what another tall, skinny junior congressman from Illinois started with the Thirteenth Amendment in 1865...and I can think of no better person to do that than Barack Obama.

Would that I could have served under him as my Commander-in-Chief, instead of ending my career under the current administration....

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Invitation to a Party

If you read this blog--and you're single--and you would like to come to DC for a party--consider yourselves invited. This is the invitation I just sent out via email.

In celebration of Valentine's Day--I'd like to remind myself of the singular beauties of being single--by making fun of people in relationships.

"How are you going to do it?"

"Can I come?"

"You're crazy Eve! Just crazy!"

Yes yes, I can hear your thoughts--and I will answer your questions.

Saturday, February 16th at 8pm we are going to have a Love Fest Party. Only the coolest single people will be ALLOWED to come and play with us. You have to be game to play! if not, stay home and think about what a pathetic loser you are that you're alone and you're not willing to have a little fun at the expense of others.

When you arrive, we will put your name in a bowl and draw names to assign people to "couples". Then we draw different "relationships".

I'm thinking that we'll give away prizes for couples with the most PDA, for cheating couples, for people who break up and get back together the most, for the "most Jr. High" couples, etc etc.

We'll probably eat some pizza and watch a horrible chick flick. Do some dancing, and otherwise just hang out and have a good time revelling in our freedom.

I'm sending this out to a few of you, but feel free to pass the word along. We should try and keep the numbers even just to make it fun--but if we have extras--we can make it work!

Let me know what you think!

Love to all,

The Queen
of Everything

PS: if I sent this to you, and you're in a relationship--please feel free to break up with your current lover in order to come to this party. We won't mind! The more the merrier!

favorite comment

In response to an article about John McCain's reaction to Mitt Romney's reaction (blah blah blah--who cares. . . ) I found this comment.

"McCain responded on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" by accusing the former Massachusetts governor of the "disgraceful" slandering a World War II hero and demanding that he apologize to Dole"

I am loathe to rely on a Washington Post reporters characterization of any remarks not surrounded by quotes and free of ellipses. However, I will allow the apology part must be based on some expression of indignation from Sen McCain and remark that I wish the Republican party would stop with all the whining and pearl clutching already. It's just irritating.

Posted by: zukermand | February 5, 2008 01:34 PM

Sunrise, Sunset

I need to post, but my thoughts are very jumbled--and I want to give special weight to this post. During the last week, I've been filled with all sorts of emotions. First of all my little nephew was born. His name is Konner Jay. He was born on January 25th. From his pictures, he is a beautiful, healthy boy. And Kim looks like she is just fine.

My brother Nick has been waiting for one of us to have a baby for ages. He wanted a little brother or sister so badly, and my parents kept telling him that he'd just have to wait until he became an uncle. Unfortunately for Nick, we've all taken our sweet time about getting married and having children. We're all over 25, but at 28, Kim's finally taking the initiative to procreate. And for that--the rest of us are ever grateful.

Two days later, on my 30th birthday, President Hinckley passed away. I am always happy when a man of so many years, who has worked hard, earns a beautiful rest in heaven. I have no doubt about the existence of an afterlife, and so I joy in his passing. But at Saturday's funeral--I just cried. I certainly cried when my brother Jack passed away, but he was young--and I was filled with regret. But I also cried because I felt a true loss for what impact he would no longer have in my life.

I felt the same kind of loss at the funeral on Saturday. As pleased as I was to imagine him reunited with his wife--I wept for the loss of a kindred spirit. He studied English and Ancient Languages. He was a communicator. He loved words. He was a writer. And as I listened to the beautiful music chosen for his funeral--as I listened to his daughter speak as a representative of the family--I felt the loss of a true renaissance man. I felt the loss of a man whose leadership had encouraged men and women to reevaluate their own views of women within the church. I felt the loss of a leader who encouraged open communication and who encouraged church members to live a life of intelligence and hard work.

I could not stop crying as I listened to the words of one of my favorite songs, "My Shepherd Will Supply My Needs". And as we listened to the words of President Hinckley's own songs, I was again reminded of his many talents--and the way his exercising of these gifts gave a credibility to others with similar gifts.

This man worked his whole life in an effort to help build up the kingdom of God and to give service to those in need. My life isn't a walk in the park, but I can do more. I can be a better sister, a better aunt, a better friend.

I can do more. I need to do more. It certainly helps to forget your own petty problems--like not being able to go and see your brand new nephew.

The following are the words to "My Shepherd Will Supply My Need". The song has always meant the world to me, but I love it even more now.

My Shepherd will supply my need,
Jehovah is His name.
In pastures fresh He makes me fee,
Beside the living stream.

He brings my wand’ring spirit back,
When I forsake His ways.
And leads me for His mercy’s sake
In paths of truth and grace.

When I walk through the shades of death
Thy presence is my stay.
One word of Thy supporting breath
Drives all my fears away.

Thy hand in sight of all my foes,
Doth still my table spread.
My cup with blessings overflows,
Thine oil anoints my head.

The sure provisions of my God
Attend me all my days.
O may Thy house be my abode,
And all my work be praise.

There would I find a settled rest,
While others go and come.
No more a stranger nor a guest,
But like a child at home.
Words: Isaac Watts / Music: American Folk Melody
Dennis Allen

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Friday night with Larry

After a long day at work, I walked to the Metro (doing my part with public transportation!), got on the metro and rode back into the city to visit the Natural History Museum so I could watch a U2 concert in 3d!

(Just in case I haven't blogged on the horrors of my commute--I live south of DC--I get on a bus, which I take to the Pentagon, where I get on the metro and ride to Metro Center--there I get on another line that takes me out north of the city. It comes to be a 90 minute commute, when everything is running smoothly!)

But, back from thoughts of horrid commute! I went to see U2 in 3d last night! It was wonderful and little drummer boy Larry was as beautiful as I first remember him to be! They played all of my favorites--well not all of them--but they played "Sunday Bloody Sunday!" And dear Bono was just wonderful! I had this odd thought while I was watching them though. I thought of how they had been very Christian boys, and I thought--if I was a youth minister, how would I best influence the people of the world to do good--OH I KNOW--I'll go and become the greatest rock band on earth and go all over the world telling people to stop fighting, to care for one another, and whatever else I feel is important to share.

I felt like I was in one of the BEST sermons. And I felt happy to be there. And I was glad that with thousands of people watching at the concert in Buenos Aires where they filmed this, that Bono was the one with the microphone because his message is so beautiful.

This band has an unequalled amount of power in the world, and they're using it for good.

I didn't enjoy the concert quite as much as I might have. I had to pee the whole time, and so it was kind of reminiscent of watching Titanic. I had to pee then too, and the water just kept gushing and felt like screaming "Die already! Geez!"

But I didn't yell at the screen. I still loved Larry, Adam, Bono, and the Edge--but I didn't love them. I didn't scream and beg for the giant screen to give me more.

Afterwards I enjoyed a nice leisurely evening with friends.

It was truly one of the nicest nights I have had in a while--perhaps since--oh, I don't know--last weekend! (I keep having these stellar evenings. It's really kind of wonderful!)

So yeah. Life is gooooood.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Teaching Ethics

Last night I got in trouble because my 4.5 hour class got out 1.5 hours early.

Now for those of you who are in shock at the idea of keeping students in a class for 4.5 hours--fear not--you are not alone!

The class I teach is an introduction to Ethical philosophies, told from a pluralistic point of view--so we basically cover as many ethical theories as possible and learn why they're good, and why they're bad.

My students are here to study culinary arts, business, or medicine.

They don't care about Peter Railton or Ayn Rand.

But I have a responsibility to ensure that their education is well-rounded and that after they receive their diplomas--they can happily sit around the Thanksgiving table and nonchalantly drop a comment about the unhumanitarian pitfalls of act-utilitarianism. Isn't this why we go to college?!

My agenda when starting the class was to cover Ethics according to various religious points of view:
1) Navajo
2) Buddhism
3) Islam
4) Christianity
5) What do all these faiths have in common?

After a small break and a student presentation, we were going to break into groups to address individual student questions. I have the students bring questions to class every week. These questions help me to keep the discussion specific to their interests. I split them into groups of 2 and 3 and had them pick out 3 or 4 questions from the pile of questions and look for answers within the text book. Then they got up and presented their findings.

We took another break.

Then I introduced the idea of utilitarianism to the class.

I realize I could have spent more than an hour explaining the difference between act utilitarianism and rule utilitarianism. But we covered two clear cut thought experiments. We covered the good ways that utilitarian thought could be used to make choices. We covered the ways in which utilitarian thought devalues individual lives.

We covered it all.

and their little brains were still swimming from all the different religions we had previously covered.

So--rather than make them suffer through my droning for another hour and a half--

I let them go early.

Just as they were exiting, the Dean came by to visit the class.

Yay for timing!

Next week, I'm droning! Who cares about the limits that one brain can take in one night! Who cares about being the most interesting teacher! Who cares about watching the students fall asleep as you share your deepest feelings on compatibilism?!!

Not me. Nope. I'm a very secure person. And a good teacher who knows when enough is enough!