Wednesday, September 30, 2009

What the...?!?!

Sorry, I've been busy praying in synagogue and working this weekend and week respectively, so I'm just now hearing about all this...

(Feel free to take the above and use it elsewhere against these crazies who either signed the petition supporting Polanski or have publicly stated they support his release from jail.)

Roman Polanski - the creep - finally got arrested and will hopefully be extradited back to the US. But some people, who no doubt believe that art and time should heal all evils, seem to think he should be allowed to continue fleeing justice. What part of "HE DRUGGED AND RAPED A 13-YEAR-OLD-GIRL AND DIDN'T EVEN CONTEST IT! IN FACT, HE ADMITTED IT, PLEAD GUILTY, AND THEN FLED THE COUNTRY SO HE WOULDN'T GO TO PRISON FOREVER!" don't these people understand?!?!?! HE'S A PEDO FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT'S HOLY! I'll repeat that for those who missed it the first time: HE'S A PEDO! FOR THOSE WHO DOUBT IT, I HAVE THIS QUOTE, SPOKEN BY ROMAN POLANSKI HIMSELF:
"If I had killed somebody, it wouldn’t have had so much appeal to the press, you see? But... fucking, you see, and the young girls. Judges want to fuck young girls. Juries want to fuck young girls. Everyone wants to fuck young girls!"

(This was reported by The Telegraph UK, having been found in an interview that Polanski did with Martin Amis, a novelist, in 1979.)

If nothing else, we've all seen enough Law & Order: SVU to know that THAT RIGHT THERE is the way a PEDOPHILE THINKS to justify THE SICK things they do! They think everyone wants to do what they do, but everyone else just won't admit it. WTH?

And for those who might think that Polanski was right to run because the judge, who had accepted his plea deal, which Polanski had agreed to on the basis that the judge would reduce his sentence, reneged on the agreement that the sentence would be reduced and instead had decided to sentence Polanski to 50 years... The judge changed his mind because he was given evidence that Polanski had raped two underage girls in Germany before and had reason to believe that, if given the chance, Polanski would do it again. Sounds like a good reason to levy maximum sentence to me. The fact that Polanski has admitted to having sex with underage girls in the years since he fled the US just makes it that much worse.

So many people that I have to put on the "Dead to Me" list now, the people who have signed the petition asking for Polanski's release from the Swiss jail in which he's currently awaiting extradition... Including Terry Gilliam, who I adored until now, and Martin Scorsese. I notice, however, that most people on the list supporting his release are French or in some way Continental European... I find that rather interesting...

Oh, and I love (read that with sarcasm, k?) that this petition says he's been arrested on a 30 year old warrant in which he's charged "in a case of morals"... Nice euphemism for "child rape"? As if the rape of a child is not a generally abhorrent thing and it's all a matter of Americans being Puritanical prudes. Really, WTH?!? DIAF!

Another awesome article that obviously does not miss the point of all this at all. YAY! for SALON!

And I would like to say to Whoopi Goldberg, who clarified her "but I don't believe it was rape-rape" statement earlier today: You need to get your facts straight before you open your mouth. Polanski plead guilty to the lesser charge of "unlawful sex with a minor" in a plea deal. He would have been charged with and tried for "aggrivated rape" - which certainly is "rape-rape," as you put it - if he hadn't plead out. And if you read the transcripts of the victim's grand jury testimony, it is very obvious that what he did was aggrivated, violent rape of a 13 year old girl. The DA offered the deal to spare the child further anguish by having to go through what would have been a high-profile trial at a time when there were no protections for victims like there are today. There's no mitigation or down-playing of Polanski's crime, no matter to what he formally plead guilty.

Also: See this open letter to the signers of this petition and consider passing it on. This deserves to become viral on the internet and I hope every single one of the signers of the Polanski supporters' petition sees this letter and the comments.

As of 2:30am September 1st, the following people I once respected have signed the petition for Polanski's release:

Darren Aronofsky (husband of Rachel Weisz), Ethan Coen (one half of the Coen Brothers), Penelope Cruz (yeah, you read that right), Alfonso Cuaron (the director of Prisoner of Azkaban), Guillermo del Toro (damn it, and I wanted to see The Hobbit), Terry Gilliam (of Monte Python), David Lynch (who did Twin Peaks and Mulholland Drive), Brett Ratner (the shit director who ruined X-Men: the Last Stand), Martin Scorsese (who needs no introduction), Tilda Swinton (The White Witch in Narnia), Sam Mendes (Kate Winslet's husband), and Woody Allen (who I never respected, ever, but who isn't a surprise to the point that it's a freaking joke...)...

Monday, September 21, 2009

Knitting and Spinning news...

I won the Customer Appreciation drawing on the Peaches n' Creme Ravelry group for September! Two pounds of any yarn! :D I got the Article 940 in Capri Blue and 984 in Sky Blue. YAY!

I finished knitting the Odessa hat my little sister asked for. I just need to dye it. She wanted in yellow and I couldn't get my hands on the right yarn in yellow, so I got Cascade 220 Superwash in a natural sort of color and I'm going to dye it with acid dye. I just need to get my hands on some vinegar.

In other news, I want this wheel so bad, OMG! Saw it in an ad in Fall 2009 Spin-Off (there are some really interesting articles in there, including information about raising silk worms, growing cotton in your backyard and spinning wolf fur!). The wheel is called the Mach II by SpinOlution.

I've been thinking about how I probably need a double-treadle castle wheel that I can place directly in front of me when I spin for a few weeks now. Not that I have any money to buy one. I'm not even entirely sure what I want to buy. But I think a double-treadle, castle-type wheel might help with the bursitis in my hip. I still can't spin for a prolonged period of time. I've managed a half ounce of fiber per day that I've spun three times this last week, and I've been okay doing that. No pain, no strain that I can really feel. It's something, but nothing like what I used to do. And I've asked on one of the spinning groups on Ravelry for advice about it and a double-treadle castle was recommended because the orifice and the treadles are directly in front of the spinner, instead of placed at an angle - either to the spinner or to each other or both - and this might encourage better posture, save one side of my body from doing all the work (or even allow me to switch feet entirely when I want to), and keep me from doing something I've noticed I do with my other wheels...

I had never noticed this before, but I'm trying to be more conscious of what my body does while I'm spinning that might be causing repetitive motion issues. I have a very pronounced tendency to turnout my hip and whole leg while treadling! For those who might not know what it means to turnout, it's a ballet and dance term for the motion where one rotates the hip joint (and therefore, the entire leg all the way down to the foot) away from the center of the body. I have noticed that I sometimes do this much less often while driving as well... This could be the source of my injury, and I'm making a conscious effort to not do it, but it is difficult. It feels very natural to allow my hip to turn out while spinning on my HitchHiker, and though I haven't used it in a really long time my Saxony practically begs me to turnout because the treadle is already at the perfect angle for it, but I can see that turning-out makes my posture lazy and it puts greater strain on my hip joint in a very short period of time, even if it is otherwise quite comfortable. Bad, bad, bad. So I really would like to try out a double-treadle castle wheel as soon as I can to see if this change in the treadles and orientation of the orifice helps with this problem.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Reading Rainbow is being canceled!

You read that right. I am so bummed! I loved Reading Rainbow as a small child. It was one of my first tv shows and I watched it practically every day. I hoped to one day have my children watch the show too.

Details here.

Personally, I think it's the job of schools, not television to teach the mechanics of how to read. Reading Rainbow makes reading cool and fun for young kids. And it's not just a matter of encouraging the literate to read, but also motivating the illiterate to want to learn to read and also, you know, a lot of kids who watch the show are still in the stage where their parents read to them. This idea of canceling it because research shows they should have programs that focus on phonics is stupid.

Who's up for a fund-raiser just for Reading Rainbow? I bet it would be really easy to raise enough money to keep it on the air if someone would just organize it. It's a shame that such a wonderful and beloved program is being canceled over the matter of just a few hundred thousand dollars.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

OMG, Shoes! ... And Shows...

I love shoes. Even if most of the time I like my feet bare, I still have an uncontrollable, irrational lust for cute, hot, trendy, hot shoes.

I bought some today. Seychelles. "Our Heroine."

That's the best photo I can get with my camera phone.

They're pretty much exactly like shoes that they are selling at Target, except these have brass hardware instead of pewter colored hardware, and these are real leather instead of evil PVC. \o/

In other news: Am currently watching Bones. I gave up on The Vampire Diaries after last week. It's set in a small town in rural Virginia, and yet NO ONE speaks with even a hint of a Southern accent... in fact, everyone speaks as if they're from Los Angeles. That's the tip of the iceberg of the things that are wrong with that show, but that was the thing that pushed me from "fun to mock how bad this is" to "now, they're just being excessively ridiculous."

Supernatural is on next!!! :D Hot shoes and Supernatural! I feel like it's my birthday or something...

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I don't like Joe Wilson as much as anyone...

I totally agree that he was censured in the House today. I think he should apologize before the House too. It's not playing politics to censure him. He did an awful, awful thing during the President's speech. I said at the time that it was potentially racially motivated because I don't believe anyone would have done that to any previous president... whether that is because things are just so extreme right now, or because it truly did happen because the President is black and Joe Wilson is a racist, I can't say for sure.

But I do not like what Chris Matthews is doing. Saying that Joe Wilson is "playing Johnny Reb" by purposefully trying to stir things up to distract everyone from the real issue of health care, and trying to steer discussions on his MSNBC show toward what Joe Wilson's politics might be about the Confederacy and the Battle Flag, and suggesting that because Joe Wilson is from South Carolina everyone from South Carolina is racist, when that is very much not the case. Joe Wilson might be a lot of things - and I don't know that Chris is entirely wrong in his suggestions toward Joe Wilson's personal racism, I just wish Chris would be more specific with his evidence instead of just spouting innuendo and including all of South Carolina and all of the South in his slurs. Icwhutudidthar, Chris... and I don't approve. Because, honestly, you're doing exactly what you accused Joe Wilson of trying to do today - distracting from the real issues at hand. Stop being divisive, Chris! It weakens the argument and the Republicans do that enough for everyone... And the same goes for the rest of the Yankee media who seem to be really liking the idea that it's all a matter of people from the South just generally being ignorant, racist hicks. We're not. Thanks. I mean, some are, but I think the matter is being overstated and exaggerated.

I know what President Carter has said about the South. I would like to point out that he's of an older generation (like my grandmother who said last November that she wouldn't vote for Obama, despite the fact that the rest of us were, because "black people aren't as smart as white people"... *headdesk* Yes, we don't listen to what she has to say on such issues, and we realize she's living in 1932...), and might not be seeing the changes in the younger, mainstream Southern culture because he's looking for the way things used to be and finding that in some places (as Lincoln said, "If you look for the bad in people, expecting to find it, you surely will."). Sure, racism in the South still exists - I mean, duh - but is it pervasive and insidious like it once was? I don't see that it is.

Racism also doesn't occur just in the South. It also exists in New York, and Connecticut, and Wisconsin, and Vermont, and Arizona, and California - it occurs everywhere... Anyone who says otherwise obviously isn't paying attention, or purposely ignoring evidence because it doesn't fit in with their preconceived ideas about what racism is and who is guilty of it (and this tendency by some people is something I find pretty freaking disturbing). It isn't limited to just white people being racist toward black people either, it occurs in any and every combination imaginable, and anyone who pays attention knows that. Personally, I don't see greater evidence of racism in the South than I see evidence of it anywhere else in the country, although I think racism in the South gets a lot more press (again because it plays into some people's preconceived notions). If anything, I think many people in the South are hyper-aware of race issues precisely because of the South's history, in ways that people outside of the South are not, and make an effort to not only not be a racist in actual fact, but also to not do anything that might make them appear to be a racist either.

And can we please remember that Barack Obama carried Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia - which are three Southern states (Yes, Florida counts! If we seceded once upon a time, we count.) - and that he lost South Carolina by only 9%! That's a pretty small margin for a state that's supposedly so very racist, while also being so very Republican (which I think had a lot more to do with the loss, rather than pervasive racism). I'd also like to note that North Carolina and Indiana (not a Southern state!) had the same margin in Obama's favor: 50% to 49% with 1% going to other candidates.

At the very same time, I would very much thank the "Right" if they would STOP using phrases that bring up the idea that the South is full of racists to advertise their anti-Obama products, such as the "You Lie!" bumpersticker being peddled at WorldNetDaily with the phrase "Rebel yell" as part of the advertisement (and bona dea, but they are wingnuts over there at that site!). In fact, if you're not Joe Diffy or using it in technical historical context, I really wish you wouldn't use that phrase at all.

*sighs* ... Yeah, getting back to the fight for health care now.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Two pieces of business this morning...

And the Boondock Saints 2: All Saints Day trailer...

October 30th, y'all!!! WHY SO FAR AWAY?!?! (I know it's because they want it to be close to All Saints Day, but still...)

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Somebody in Washington got schooled last night...

Several somebodies actually, and I think they were much chagrined by it.

You can watch Obama's entire health care speech here, as well as the official Republican rebuttal immediately following.

I thought it was an awesome speech and I think the Republicans who are against it are just smoking crack (and by "smoking crack" I mean pandering to special interest groups lobbying for the status quo who are probably lining the Republicans' coffers in ways that should be and might actually be illegal).

As to what was going on in the House while Obama was talking: What the heck were those sheets of paper that some of the Republicans kept holding up? And that tasteless asshole, who shouted out that Obama is a "liar" right in the middle of his speech, Rep. Joe Wilson from South Carolina (whose web server crashed minutes after he did that, btw), needs to go home now.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

More on Public Option...

Not that this will necessarily clear up the confusion, but - heads up - Obama's talking about the plan he's pushing tonight!!! So tune in!

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Public Option NOW!

Write to your elected officials now by going to

The text of the bill can be found here.


To anyone out there who thinks that Obama shouldn't address America's school children today:

You're an idiot.

And possibly also incredibly narrow-minded.

And probably amazingly ignorant.

And I grieve for your children.

That goes double for Jim Greer. I think it's awful that you're from the same state as I am.

I am not the only person who thinks so:

If this were President Clinton, or either of the President Bushes, this would never have been criticized or questioned. This is the President of the United States addressing America's school children. He should be respected by all students due to his elected position, if for no other reason, no matter what their own or their parents' political opinions are. That his motives are being questioned, and beyond that the suitability of whether or not he should even be allowed to do this is sickening. I think part of it is because Obama is black (no, really, I think any white president would never be questioned on doing this - even Bush or Nixon when their approval ratings were in the sub-basement), I think part of it is because Republicans are bitter and trying to stir things up right now, and I think part of it is because people are insane and/or stupid. Really stupid.

If this were Bush, and he were saying what Obama is getting ready to say, speech pre-released or not, I would fully support it... I don't think it would be a particularly effective message coming from him, but I would never say that he shouldn't be allowed to say it or pull my hypothetical children out of school for the day.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

In other news...

I find I'm quickly becoming addicted to Publix's Greenwise Organic Light Chocolate Soymilk. I used to hate everything soy (because it tasted funny to me), but in recent months, I've found I like a lot of it... even tofu when it's prepared correctly. I stay away from the more processed soy products, simply because they are processed and packed with salt. But this chocolate soymilk is seriously delicious. Unlike Silk Chocolate Soymilk, which to me still tastes like chocolate-flavored soy juice, this stuff is thick and creamy - like chocolate milk should be. I think it's the Dutch chocolate that does it...


I was reading a discussion on Jewish opinions on the idea of a Messianic Age on a Jewish Ravelry group just now. Someone suggested that liberal Jews believe in a Messianic Age, whereas more conservative Jews tend toward the idea of a Messiah in the form of an actual person. I object to this generalization and the way it seems to suggest that this is a uniform, required thing among Jews - the belief in a Messiah or Messianic Age - when it certainly is not. Because the last discussion of this topic was nearly a year ago, I'm uncomfortable with replying there with my thoughts. So I will do it here...

I do not believe in either a Messiah or Messianic Age. At all. In any way, shape or form. I am not an Apocalyptic Jew. I recognise that this was a direct influence of Zoroastrian thought on Jewish thought during the Pre-Hellenistic period. I also must point out that the Sadducees, and likely some other Jewish sects of the Second Temple Period of which we just have no record (and there are many of those), rejected Messianic ideas as being even less than apocryphal. Sadduceean thought did not subscribe to Messianic ideas because no information about a Messiah exists in the Torah, only in some of the Writings and some of the Prophets. Due to this, they rejected the idea... (One should also remember that there were a lot more Writings and Prophets that are now lost to history that existed for reading and study during that time.) I quite agree with their take on that.

I think that the Apocalyptic and Messianic ideas were fostered during the formation of Post-Temple Judaism because times were so very bad. For the same reason, early Christians expanded their influence at the time. People felt quite powerless to help themselves. People were probably pretty angry about it, downtrodden and oppressed. And unable to do anything on very literal pain of death at the hands of the Romans, the idea of a future in which God would assist them through an intermediary was quite attractive and comforting. In the Second Temple Period, this had taken on many forms. Some believed a Golem-like creature (and you might have thought that a Rabbi in Prague came up with that one, but no) or another supernatural creature would be sent, others that the Messiah would be a man, some believed that it would be many, some believed it would be just one. In the Post-Temple reformation, like all things in Judaism, there was a special effort to make the theology uniform, so one single idea of the Messiah was decided upon after what was no doubt a very long debate among the early Rabbis.

I take the attitude that if one keeps waiting for something to happen in order for something to be done, it never, ever will. "God helps those who help themselves" and "If not now, when, if not me, then who?" and all that. If we want things to change, we have to do it ourselves.

I'd like to add that Judaism has never really been an orthodoxy. Even in the Medieval period, there would be some disagreement among scholars on different theological points. As a professor of mine liked to say, Judaism is more of an orthopraxy (his word, not mine)... meaning belief varies, but approved actions tend to be more universal. This is an imperfect analogy too, however, since belief guides practice and practice guides belief. But I still think it's an interesting thought.

I realize to some Jews my thoughts and beliefs are heretical. In response, I giggle.

Friday, September 04, 2009


Fillings went fine.

I was linked to this today by a friend. It is an impressive rant calling the Republicans on their hypocrisy and corruption. It's awesome! Usually something this vehement would get me all stirred up and pissed off at the Republicans too, but this time that didn't happen. I'm just a bit blown away...

In unrelated news, I saw "Inglorious Basterds" last weekend. Meant to mention that before. I liked it okay... Wasn't the greatest movie ever, but wasn't the worst either and it had some good moments. I thought all the actors, with the possible exception of Mike Myers (while I generally love him, all I could think of during his scene was his SNL sketches and other goofy movies... I suspect it was the make-up they had on him), did an amazing job. The movie did pique my interest in learning a bit more about the Nazi higher-ups. Got as far as the people who were in the bunker at the end before I was just too disgusted to go further. Sick, sick people. Like we didn't know that. I think looking at these people as human beings makes them all the more monstrous and horrible rather than looking at them in more abstracted ways, as many movies do.

(Pardon my language below. It couldn't be avoided.) Did not know this: Hitler probably carried on some kind of highly inappropriate relationship with his niece Geli for a number of years, beginning in her teens, which ended with her suicide at the age of 23. He started seeing Ava Braun socially when she was only 17, and she tried to kill herself twice at 20 and 23 respectively for reasons that are unknown to history, but possibly the attempts were staged to manipulate Hitler, who was still reeling from Geli's death when she made her first attempt. When Adolf and Ava finally did kill themselves, Ava was only 33... Hitler also had his German Shepherd, her four puppies (less than a month old) and Ava's two Scottie dogs killed the night before Ava and he committed suicide. This seriously bums me out. It wasn't the dogs' fault who owned them... and... and... puppies! Hitler also saw another German movie actress who killed herself, or was murdered by Gestapo (it was never clear apparently), when she was 31. So, on top of being a mass-murdering fuckhead, a racist and bigot to the nth degree, a megalomaniac, and head of the original fucking Nazis (and I'm sure I'm leaving out a number of horrible things that he was here, but for the sake of brevity, let's just leave it at that), he also very likely was an incestuous pedo, who killed his own dogs and drove women to suicide. Just when you think Adolf Hitler couldn't get more fucked up as a person, he does. Seriously, NO ONE should EVER be compared to this guy.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

:-/ and :D

I'm getting fillings Thursday. I have two cavities. One each in #30 and #31 (bottom right molars). Never had cavities before. I'm a bit nervous about this, but not freaking out, which I count as a good thing.

Flossing is very important.

In other news, I hope to finally finish the Owling Mitts I've been working on off and on all summer tomorrow or maybe the next day. I'm making them for my friend Laura who requested them for her birthday. She requested them after her birthday though and it's too hot in the summer for mitts anyway (obviously), so I don't really feel bad for getting them done about 5 months after the date has passed.

I've got a lot of projects that I'm wanting to start asap. Two shawls, a pair of socks, a hat. I don't know what I should start first. The hat would take like a day, two tops, once I get the glass beads strung (need to find my beading needles), so I should probably try to get that out of the way first, since it's a belated birthday present for one of my sisters.

I also have a French Market Bag that's more than halfway done. I should try to get some work on that done as soon as I can. The circular needle I have it on isn't quite long enough for it, so when it's left for any length of time, the stitches near the needle tips come off the needle and some work with a crochet hook is usually required... I'm too cheap to shell out the cash for the longer circular needle though since I'd use it so rarely.

In other news: The Supernatural season 4 DVD sets have been released. Cheapest at Best Buy, but for $2 more ($37.98) can get it at Target with a bonus dvd with 30 minutes of the Q&A at ComicCon 2008. That's where I got mine. It was great to see Jensen and Jared, Kripke, Sera Gamble and Ben Edlund on the panel. I highly recommend it. I also thought the documentaries they've done about different mythological creatures they've been using on the show in recent seasons were really well done and very interesting. It was great to find out more about the sources that TPTB have been using for the show's mythology and the myths behind some of the creatures.