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Saturday, June 18, 2005

Catalina 

So today I took this here:



And I spent the day at an open bar on a beach so that eventually I looked like this:



Not a bad Saturday, except I lost my car keys somewhere on the island. So now my keys are quite a few miles offshore and I'm in Westwood. My car, meanwhile is in Long Beach. People bitch about L.A. public transport a lot. I'm about to see if they're right or not.

Gotta love it.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Rumble 

Oh...I totally forgot to mention that I felt this when it happened.

More on that later...right now I have to go see Mark de Clive-Lowe. More on that later, too.

My Space 

I resisted it forever, but I finally caved.

Anybody else on there?

Thank You, Senator Danforth 

A reasonable, moderate, former Republican senator and current Episcopal minister speaks.

A sampling:

It is important for those of us who are sometimes called moderates to make the case that we, too, have strongly held Christian convictions, that we speak from the depths of our beliefs, and that our approach to politics is at least as faithful as that of those who are more conservative. Our difference concerns the extent to which government should, or even can, translate religious beliefs into the laws of the state.

. . . We strongly support the separation of church and state, both because that principle is essential to holding together a diverse country, and because the policies of the state always fall short of the demands of faith. Aware that even our most passionate ventures into politics are efforts to carry the treasure of religion in the earthen vessel of government, we proceed in a spirit of humility lacking in our conservative colleagues.

Read the entire thing. I find it heartfelt and encouraging. With so many unreasonable people making so much noise these days, such statements are a breath of fresh air. Thanks Senator Danforth.

What needs to happen in response to this sort of thing is a responsive reaching out by those on the secular side of this debate. An overture from people like me that it is not religion or religious people that we have a problem with, but the imposition of that religion on others. I feel comfortable making such overtures. I find common ground with my religious friends each day, but too often those on my side of this divide are as unwilling to reach across as the Dobsons and Robertsons of the world. When men like Danforth reach out, it is our duty as fellow reasonable people to reach back and make a connection. This is not about left v. right or religous v. secular, it's about reasonable v. extremist. In that debate, I find myself, happily, on the same side as men like Senator Danforth.

But I have about 3 readers. What we need are luminaries of the secular world writing similar op-eds in response to statements like this one from John Danforth. Writing about how we are not trying to eradicate Christianity or spirituality, but trying to find ways to coexist peacefully and respectfully. So, people with a modicum of clout, get to it...I'm doing what little I can.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The 10 

This is the 10. That's Southern California for I-10. This is the view I have for at least an hour each day, usually more like an hour and a half.



How long do I go down the 10 that it takes up so much of my time? 8 miles.

When I get back to Austin, my "commute" to work will be about 3 minutes...with bad traffic, 10. Here, it feels like half my day sometimes. If I move here we're going to have to look into some neighborhoods closer to downtown, but still not too far from the beach. Decisions decisions.

This is the sign in my elevator:



"Please do not become alarmed. Please use the button marked 'alarm' . . .." Little shit like that makes my day.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Texas Humor 

I've noticed before in my travels that it doesn't always sit well with people. This is true of California as well. Some people get my jokes. Some of these find them funny and others don't. So be it. But others have gone so far as to spin out of control into fits of self-righteousness that appear to come from some visceral hatred of sarcasm. Or they're just stupid and don't get the joke, which is more likely the case I suppose.

I was mulling this over today when I ran across this description of Texas humor from Amanda Marcotte (another Austin blogger) in the middle of a post over at Pandagon that I thought was particularly spot on.
I can speak for Texans and say that our humor is equal parts self-effacement and uncalled for braggadicio, covered with a thick layer of bullshit to make it difficult to tell when the bragging ends and the self-effacement begins.

That's a pretty apt description if you ask me.

Monday, June 13, 2005

A Day at the Beach 

I have to admit...I like being able to go to the beach on a whim. Yesterday I spent the early portion of my Sunday afternoon at the horse track losing 10 dollars with some attorneys and a few of the other summer associates from the firm.

As I was leaving, I decided I might want to go to the beach. My friend Tom lives right by the beach, so I went home, grabbed my suit, and met him down at his place (in Southern Santa Monica). So about 30 minutes after I thought to myself "perhaps I'd like to go to the beach" I was at the beach. It's definitely a nice way to round off your week and make sure you got all the stress out before you start over again on Monday.

After the beach, Tom and I met a few of the other summers and had a mexican dinner with the requisite margarita and a corona. I slept perfectly. Now that's a nice Sunday afternoon.

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