Thursday, June 25, 2009

TShirt Fight

I want THIS SHIRT and THIS SHIRT.

And I want a friend who would wear one of them with me and go traipsing about the country being all sorts of crazy. We'd have to stage fights or something. I think the shirts demand it.

(Sorry for all the Twilight-ness. I'm not even reading the books right now. I'm seriously obsessing over other YA. It just keeps showing up. I can't help it.)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Best of Bootie

Since I posted the Buffy/Edward mashup yesterday, I thought I'd share my other current fav in the world of mashups, Best of Bootie. Today I can't get the mashup of Fergie's London Bridge and Cake's Short Skirt/Long Jacket. These songs have become my go to playlist for cardio workouts and anytime I just want a smile on my face. I mean seriously who can't appreciate a mashup of Big Shot/Big Pimpin' or The Safety Dance/This New Bootie or Beethoven's 5th/Golddigger. Oh my goodness, some of the tracks are just inspired, others are songs that I always confuse and think they should be the same anyway. And really, I think that's just how songs travel. Maybe I have songs playing through my head more than most, and I do claim a high level of rapid associations, but songs never get finished when I sing them. They always morph into a song I like just as much or better or worse. (Ha! That's all the options there.) So the fact that a dj has done the same already just validifies my screwy thought process. :-) Anyway, check them out.

I do have to say that though they claim the "bootleg" title, these are as transformational to me as the Buffy/Twilight clip so I think they pass copyright restrictions. Maybe it's because they tend to use the whole song, but even then it's just specific track layers... Anyway, it's grey area in copyright land so use your best discretion.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Buffy/Edward Mashup

Buffy and/or Twilight fans! This mashup is too hilarious to pass up. It's nice to see a girl have an appropriate reaction to Edward's stalker behavior. The fun game is to see if you can figure out which Buffy episodes Jonathan pulled from.



H/T Bookshelves of Doom (I get all my good YA from Leila.)

Monday, June 15, 2009

In Defense of Twitter

I twitter. Not well. Not in the most significant of communication experiments connecting a global community in 140 characters or less. Mostly I just use it to update my facebook status. And keep up with my internet obsessions (fiveawesomegirls, vlogbrothers and the nerdfighters) and some other tech saavy friends whom I don't see often.

But this weekend I used twitter in an entirely new way. See I joined twitter right after the big earthquake in China last April. Impressed by the role Twitter played in getting news quickly in and out of the shambles of the Chinese province, I thought that this was something important to check out. I've watched various people adopt and wonder and criticize the shallowness of the Twitter format. And you know for 99% of communication via Twitter, they aren't wrong in their assessments. But in the aftermath of the Iranian election, news media has been incomplete and therefore in most mainstream media feeds light. There are not enough solid facts. So be it. But there are eyewitness accounts and they're coming in at #iranelection.

In Tehran, twitter was used to organize rooftop chants of Allah O Akbar (sorry don't know what it means) as evidenced by Youtube (h/t Daily Dish again)


It's an imperfect media source. Eye witness accounts are mixed with lots of messages of support and encouragement and not a few sarcastic/parody tweets. (It's gone now, but there was an amusing pseudo-feed from Ahmedinejad saying things like he won because he trended higher than Mousavi on twitter and that he would celebrate by going to an off-Broadway musical.) But it gets information out there. Not the tested and confirmed information that we expect from our mainstream media, but the best we can get right now. And scrolling through the tweets broadcasting safe proxy settings and new satellite coordinates to get BBC news, that this must be vital for Iranians right now.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Book Review--The Wholehearted Marriage

LibraryThing sent me another early reviewer book. This one is of the non-fiction variety: The Wholehearted Marriage: Fully Engaging Your Most Important Relationship by Greg Smalley and Shawn Stoever. Smalley is the son of one of the big huge relationship gurus in evangelical Christianity circles (though I can't claim to know any of his stuff.)

I find this book review oddly appropriate because my 2 year anniversary is next week, and the last marriage/relationship book I read was shortly after we got married. Two different people thought Walter Wangerin's marriage book and it was very good. But that was probably because two very academic people had just gotten married and so it felt very comfortable to learn about marriage through reading in the midst of all the discomforts of actually being married.

Back to the book. It's divided into three sections: Intro, Counseling Stuff, Application Stuff (my headings). The intro was the weakest part, IMO. It makes a biblical case for caring for your heart and your partner's heart, but it made some missteps as far as this biblical student is concerned. For instance, when the Hebrew Bible talks about "the heart" that where the Hebrews put rational thought and decision making, the emotion which is currently associated with the heart was more of a gut feeling (roughly speaking) so to use those passages which talk about one's heart the way Smalley and Stoever want to is a bit inappropriate.

The middle three chapters of the book seem to put the brunt of the counseling weight. They talked about caring for your wounded heart, your fearful heart and your exhausted heart. (PS Don't read the exhausted heart chapter at night when you're exhausted; you'll read too much into it.) There's good stuff in there, and I bet if I worked through some of the exercises I might have gotten more out of those chapters. But I didn't because it would involve asking my husband questions when he should be writing his paper. Also, while it was stuff you could do on your own, if you were really worried about your marriage, most of the content would best be talked about in a counseling setting. (It's a lot of those questions that are really "easy" to answer, but you really should be working to think them through and not just spout off a quick response.)

I think the best thing about the book comes in the last section. It gathers all these different ideas about marriage and relationships and puts them into one place. They cited the Five Love Languages and the Gottman concept of returning bids. They quoted all the heavy-hitters in the counseling biz. If you don't want to read all those books, it's the book for you. I have read a lot of those books and appreciated them so the reminder was helpful, but it wasn't a lot new. Oh however, one of the authors talked about making a baseball card for your spouse that you keep with you at all times that has their love language, areas of attention, and other stuff that you had just worked through on the back so you can have a quick reference to help you focus on what would best help your spouse. It's cheesy, but I thought it was a cute idea to make you more aware of the other person's differences.

So it's not the best relationship/marriage book I've read. It's certainly not the worst. I'd recommend it as a good introduction, but I wouldn't use it as my sole resource. And I'd definitely only give it to people with strong F's on their Myers-Briggs indicator. ;-)

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Locavore or Globavore

I so want to be someone who eats organic and shops at the Farmer's Market or participates in a CSA. I really do. But in all honesty, my husband does 99.9% of the grocery shopping and easily 90% of the cooking and then there's the 9% of the time he tells me what I can make out of the food in the fridge. I'm just not good about thinking about food until I'm hungry. Really, really hungry. However, today I was in the car for massive amounts of time. (Seriously this connects.) And two podcasts I choose to wile away my time were on food and its global and local reprecussions.

The first was this TED talk:

I haven't watched it (because I was driving and my ipod doesn't do video). But the podcast told me that watching it was something. Anyway Louise Fresco talks about the importance of local food and global processed food. What I appreciated about her talk is that it didn't minimize the advances of the past. The fact that we can process food is a great thing, but the way we process food might be the problem.

It was a sentiment that was more fully explained in Michael Pollan's address to the Long Now Foundation. (The link takes you to the rss feed, where you can download Pollan's address.) It's a much longer podcast--90 minutes. But the question that really got me was how a lot of what Pollan suggests is a lot like what folks like the Amish or Mennonite farmers are doing already. And he reiterated that it's not that we need to take food production back, it's that we need to use the technology we have to suit our needs for today and not 40 years ago.

Anyway it helped relieve a lot of my non-locavore guilt, and stimulated some good thoughts.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

By the Numbers

I'm a little fascinated with numbers today. Here are the big ones that caught my attention.

Alaina tweeted about her addiction to blog reading which required me to pull up my blogging stats. It's not good folks. I subscribe to 128 feeds. Today I've read 188 posts. I'm only slightly assuaged by the fact that I've started subscribing to the Daily Dish a news blogger who some how manages to be both more liberal and more conservative than me, but always makes me think. Google Reader tells me that it puts out 42.7 posts a day. Fortunately I skip over about 40%, but today I've been bored and scrolled through more. There's a lot of scrolling. Still it's a bit scary. I'm going away for the weekend and I might leave my laptop behind (also scary). But we'll see because the last time I went on a trip I said I was going to leave my laptop behind and managed to stash it in my bag at the last minute. (WiFi is EVERYWHERE and it's so easy to bring along...)

The other stat that I'm very pleased with is my Books Read count which numbers 43. Last year, when I started counting in July, I read 49 books in those six months. It looks like I'm about on track despite my slow months. The Bourne Trilogy is done. I'm loving the Percy Jackson books. I'm cruising through the Stephanie Plum series. I still have Crime and Punishment and War and Peace on the yet to be counted list along with Gone with the Wind (an impulse start when it was the closest book to the bed). Maybe I'll take one of those with me in addition to the next Plum novel.

Anyway, both of those numbers have to do with reading when what I really need to be doing is writing and sewing. Sigh. Such is my life.