Sunday, November 27, 2005

It's a wonderful life - Communist Propaganda?

Ever wonder why everything just happens to work out in Frank Capra's classic. Besides using God, Joesph, and Clarence the movie is very communist. Maybe that is why I like it. Think about it, a guy convinces the community that capitalism, aka Mr. Potter, is evil, and they should pool their money together all that is good and righteous, the Building and Loan. The Building and Loan, convinces our hero to join it's conquest of the working man, leave his future and bright plans. In one shining moment, it sinks its hooks into his newly wedded wife as she freely gives up her dreams and cash to save it.

Then there is the grand finale, our hero is at his last string because his comrade in arms messes up. He does the low of lows and goes to the capitalist, and what does he do; PRESS CHARGES? As our hero is about to take his life he gets a glimpse of the world without communism, and man is it bleak. Then out of nowhere the comrades come to save him, with the hordes of money they weren't telling him about.

Awe I love these happy endings.

Thursday, November 24, 2005



And for the first time in my life I will attempt to cook one. Sorry vegans, I don't like tofu that much.

What are you having for Thanksgiving?

We get to have:
Maple Roasted Turkey with bacon, cornbread stuffing, potatoes au gratin with portabello mushrooms, some fancy green beans, veggie mix salad, pumpkin pie, magdalenas, cookies, marinated mushrooms, pita bread w/ some of my special sauces, and rolls.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

On Children

I was recently emailed these, and I thought they were rather nice. Since I don't like forwarding things I will just put them here.

Paul Harvey Writes:

We tried so! hard to make things better for our kids that we made them worse. For my grandchildren, I'd like better.

I'd really like for them to know about hand me down clothes and homemade ice cream and leftover meat loaf sandwiches. I really would.

I hope you learn humility by being humiliated, and that you learn honesty by being cheated.

I hope you learn to make your own bed and mow the lawn and wash the car.

And I really hope nobody gives you a brand new car when you are sixteen.

It will be good if at least one time you can see puppies born and your old dog put to sleep.

I hope you get a black eye fighting for something you believe in.

I hope you have to share a bedroom with your younger brother/sister. And it's all right if you have to draw a line down the middle of the room,but when he wants to crawl under the covers with
you because he's scared, I hope you let him.

When you want to see a movie and your little brother/sister wants to tag along, I hope you'll let him/her.

I hope you have to walk uphill to school with your friends and that you live in a town where you can do it safely.

On rainy days when you have to catch a ride, I hope you don't ask your driver to drop you two blocks away so you won't be seen riding with someone as uncool as your Mom.

If you want a slingshot, I hope your Dad teaches you how to make one instead of buying one. I hope you learn to dig in the dirt and read books.

When you learn to use computers, I hope you also learn to add and subtract in your head.

I hope you get teased by your friends when you have your first crush on a boy\girl, and when you talk back to your mother that you learn what ivory soap tastes like.

May you skin your knee climbing a mountain, burn your hand on a stove and stick your tongue on a frozen flagpole.

I don't care if you try a beer once, but I hope you don't like it. And i! f a friend offers you dope or a joint, I hope you realize he is not your friend.

I sure hope you make time to sit on a porch with your Grandma/Grandpa and go fishing with your Uncle.

May you feel sorrow at a funeral and joy during the holidays.

I hope your mother punishes you when you throw a baseball through your neighbor's window and that she hugs you and kisses you at Hannukah/Christmas time when you give her a plaster mold of your hand.

These things I wish for you! - tough times and disappointment,hard work and happiness. To me, it's the only way to appreciate life.

Written with a pen. Sealed with a kiss. I'm here for you. And if I die before you do, I'll go to heaven and wait for you.

The government recently calculated the cost of raising a child from birth
to 18 and came up with $160,140 for a middle income family. Talk about
sticker shock! That doesn't even touch college tuition. But $160,140 isn't
so bad if you break it down. It translates into:

  • $8,896.66 a year,
  • $741.38 a month, or
  • $171.08 a week. (this is cheap!)
  • That's a mere $24.24 a day! Just over a dollar an hour.

Still, you might think the best financial advice is don't have children
if you want to be "rich." Actually, it is just the opposite. What do you
get for your $160,140?

  • Naming rights. First, middle, and last!
  • Glimpses of God every day.
  • Giggles under the covers every night.
  • More love than your heart can hold.
  • Butterfly kisses and Velcro hugs.
  • Endless wonder over rocks, ants, clouds, and warm cookies.
  • A hand to hold, usually covered with jelly or chocolate.
  • A partner for blowing bubbles, flying kites, and ...
  • Someone to laugh yourself silly with, no matter what the boss said or how your stocks performed that day.

For $160,140, you never have to grow up. You get to:

  • finger-paint,
  • carve pumpkins,
  • play hide-and-seek,
  • catch lightning bugs, and
  • never stop believing in Santa Claus.
  • keep reading the Adventures of Piglet and Pooh,
  • watching Saturday morning cartoons,
  • going to Disney movies
  • wishing on stars.
  • You get to frame rainbows, hearts, and flowers under refrigerator
    magnets and collect spray painted noodle wreaths for Christmas, hand prints
    set in clay for Mother's Day, and cards with backward letters for Father's

For $160,140, there is no greater bang for your buck. You get to be a
hero just for:

  • retrieving a Frisbee off the garage roof,
  • taking the training wheels off a bike,
  • removing a splinter,
  • filling a wading pool,
  • coaxing a wad of gum out of bangs, and coaching a baseball team that never wins but always gets treated to ice cream regardless.

You get a front row seat to history to witness the:

  • first step,
  • first word,
  • frst bra,
  • first date, and
  • the first time behind the wheel.

You get to be immortal. You get another branch added to your family tree,
and if you're lucky, a long list of limbs in your obituary called
grandchildren and great grandchildren.

You get an education in:

psychology, nursing, criminal justice, communications, and human sexuality
that no college can match. In the eyes of a child, you rank right up there
under God.

You have all the power to heal a boo-boo, scare away the monsters under
the bed, patch a broken heart, police a slumber party, ground them forever,
and love them without limits, So . . one day they will, like you, love
without counting the cost. That is quite a deal for the price!!!!!!!

About Grad School

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one struggling:

UofC Fires

Friday, November 18, 2005

Flawed Traditions

Honor Killings

A reason traditions need to be questioned. There are also several books out about the subject as well, just search Amazon for "Honor Killings".

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

The meaning of Butter (no it's not a theological question)

Cheryl: Cream Cheese is more fattening than Butter.
me: Really,..., After I compare the labels I think you are wrong.
Cheryl: That's not Butter. Butter means margarine, not butter.
me: So what do you say when you mean butter.
Cheryl: Butter.


Me: So my turn at the dishes means your turn at the dishes. =D

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Shock and Awe

Ah the adventures at the grocery store continue. So I went with my wife last night to grab our weekly goods. As I come back from getting beer and cheese (the manly parts of the trip =D), I gaze down the aisles to find her, but what is couldn't be...oh no my wife is one of "those" type of grocery store shoppers. You know the type, the ones who leave their cart in the middle of the aisle as the tramp up and down trying to decide what brand of this or what brand of that is the best option. The kind where the nice old man with his cane in the cart is patiently trying to get around the cart while they secretly smirk while they dilly-dally along. The kind that shoots the nasty looks as you touch their cart to move it out of the way. Oh woe be it that this is my wife, the one I cherish and adore, knowing that this is just a fluke and she didn't mean to be one those wretched types I hurry down the aisle and push the cart aside so the old man and disgruntled stocker who was most definitely think about touching the cart are able to pass.

Monday, November 07, 2005

The Sky is Falling, The Sky is Falling!!!!!

So I wake up to a story that I fear our country would be a little better decided upon. Torture. Cheney wants to keep it, but the 90 - 9 Senate vote wants to ban it for good.

It doesn't take long to find the evils of torture. I didn't ever form too much of an opinion on it until I read the book Nunca Mas. It is a accounting of the tortures and killings of the Junta government in Argentina from the 70's to late 80's, (the secret behind Evita). But they have accounts of how women, who were blindfolded for years and constantly told that they would be raped, cannot walk down the streets without fearing for their lifes or that their captures might find them again. How babies would be torn from their parents and given away to families who were told the mothers died.

Thus I am so excited when I see that there is a ban on torture used by the military, but it could be vetoed by the President. This should be stopped and the bill needs to go through. It would be an ideological shift in our country that would protect truth and uphold justice in the world.

Friday, November 04, 2005

UofC blaming who?

So apparently there was this party at the UofC that has gotten the administration and the black student population in a ruff. Some white kids had a party where they dressed like thugs, drank 40s, and listened to rap music. Then when some black students came they were appalled at the party.

Now what is the real issue here, that these kids were acting like all black people are thugs or that they were mimicking what they see in pop culture? In reaction to the party, there is going to be a large meeting on campus about race relations, which is a good thing, but my problem is that the community is shocked at the this party when it is exactly what the entertainment industry has been selling for the last twenty years. For example check out the billboard for 50 cent's new movie. And he is right when he says that it is no worse than any other action movie, he is just being targeted for criticism.

What I hope is that this might be a societal marker where the black community looks at what people are told is black culture and decides to change it. Not change the culture, because it is so much more, but the narrow image that the "selling rock or hoop shot" ideology is the only thing that preserves in black communities. And for the UofC to realize that the reason there are so few blacks on campus is not necessary because we are racist, but we hold students to standards that not easily attained without proper preparation. Preparation that is more accessible to rich white people, and that needed to be changed, 200 years ago.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

A beautiful story

Okay so you might not agree in all fronts but overall I like this story:

Jail Escapee Gives up at Bar

The man stops his crime spree because he is worried about his daughter. Some might call it a moment of weakness when he gave himself to the FBI but others might call it epiphany. A drastic change that will carry him throughout his life. I pray that he has the courage and strength to carry the change to all parts of his life.

Which brings me to the problem of crime that most people don't really consider. Most criminals have been the victims of crime at one point in their lives. They buy into a life that has immediate perks with an associated cost of jail time. But when you visit people in jail they almost uniformly say that they are sorry for what they did and plan on changing their lives. Except when they get out they have to deal with the same problems that put them where they were to begin with. This is why half way houses and jail ministries are so important to give people like the man in this article support in his courageous move towards truth. I would love to believe that I would be strong enough to make such a change in my life, but alas it is one of those things that I never want to test. Maybe that is a good thing.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Explanation of my current doings

Okay so I have had a few people ask me what's going on, are you planning on quitting school? The answer in short is no. When I wrote the blog saying how life sucked, I was enrolled in a class that I was not prepared to take, in fact I am about a year's worth of preparation away from taking the class. So I changed my degree plan to include less mathematics and more computer science. I plan on taking the mathematics at some point but I want to take a series of courses that will better prepare me.

Also, I have applied to Teach for America and am thinking about taking two years out of my schoolwork and going to teach at a poor school here in Chicago. For me, this is not an attempt to get away from the drudgery of my schoolwork but rather an attempt to do something very close to my heart. It doesn't take me very long to look back at my youth and see how a few great teachers really showed me how a good education was the key to coming out of the slums. I was fortunate enough to have that lesson taught to me, and I would like to give back to the community in some serious way. I know what people say, "Scientist help with society." or "Get your career in place first and then go change the world." Both of these ideas cross my mind daily but really do not embody the amount of service I want to give.

There has been something missing in my life here in Chicago. All I really do is study and research. I have been active in my Church and the Pro-life association here on campus. I have also done lots of service type stuff, like giving out food or helping with an organization drive for communities. But when I decided to come to Chicago, one of the major reasons was because there was a Catholic Worker House nearby. A professor at my old school shared his experience once with living in a Catholic Worker House and helping the poor. Okay it was more than helping the poor, it was partnering with the poor and agreeing to help each other through life's challenges. This is what I want to do in a very real way. To not only be a witness and advocate to the problems in the educational system, but to be a partner invested in the success of the educational system.

With that said, I don't know if I will go away for 2 years or not yet. I just applied to the program and that could or could not mean I get into the program. I am also applying myself 100% to my studies because I do believe that science changes the world.