October Rambling: artist Indigo Anderson; Arthur and Nigel get married

Olivia Pope’s dad reminds us of black parents’ favorite expressions. But I DON’T think they are limited to black parents.


Amen, 39.


The Perfect Epitaph for Establishment Journalism: “In other words, if the government tells me I shouldn’t publish something, who I am as a journalist to disobey? Put that on the tombstone of western establishment journalism.”


I just don’t have the energy to blast the jerks responsible for the 16-day US federal government partial shutdown. Fortunately, Dan is both willing and able to do so.


Reader Wil: After our time as p.o.w.’s in Japanese concentration camps, we were liberated by the British. Two months after the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki we could escape a new danger.


Arthur and Nigel got married today. Or yesterday – that New Zealand time zone stuff always confounds me. Arthur’s observations before the big day. (I still think it’s because of the broken stemware.) Congratulations!


Amy’s Sharp Little Pencil wrote The Migraine Speaks (much to my dismay) and In the Palm of God’s Hand.


Mark Evanier’s Tales of My Childhood #3, which made me cry.


Leslie on setting boundaries as a teacher.


Steve ponders The Things We Say When Drunk.


Young Indigo Anderson is passionate about manga, anime, cosplay and making comics. “That is why when her tenth grade AP World History teacher asked for a paper about the relationship between North and South Korea, she requested to do it as a comic.

“Give plenty of credit to her teacher for allowing her the opportunity! The result titled North and South is a wonderfully succinct, heartfelt, eight-page insight to a piece of history that continues to impact the entire world even today.”

I was in Bill and Orchid Anderson’s wedding in 1997, and Indigo may have been the youngest attendee at Carol’s and my wedding in 1999.

Esteemed Comic Artist Stephen R Bissette Educates and Amuses University Audience. One of the joys of blogging is giving props to your friends.

Speaking of friends, MIGHTY Q&A: Fred Hembeck from 13th Dimension.

Superman 75th Anniversary.

How were animated cartoons made in the thirties? This is an episode of a travelogue-type series narrated by the great broadcaster, Lowell Thomas. He takes us to the Walter Lantz cartoon studio.

Dustbury pointed me to Grace Braeger Has Been Driving The Same Car For Fifty-Six Years. We Asked Her Why.

How DID they make that Honda CR-V commercial? I think its really cool.

Why you may never see the definitive Shel Silverstein biography

10 Mind-Boggling Thought Experiments

Olivia Pope’s dad reminds us of black parents’ favorite expressions. But I DON’T think they are limited to black parents.

Ken Levine on writing for Barney Miller, which may be the most underrated TV show ever.

Speaking of cop shows, 27 Actors Who Got Their Starts on Miami Vice.

The Ghost of Stephen Foster by the Squirrel Nut Zippers, and the cartoon is marvelous.

The History of Music Media: Infographic.

A song from Carole King’s Tapestry, an album I’ve only purchased thrice. Plus a saudade for Patsy Cline, and other music stars who died too soon.

From BoingBoing: Singer, songwriter, guitarist, poet, and artist Lou Reed has died.

From Nippertown: Vancouver musician Michelle Kwan plays Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child o’ Mine” on an ancient Chinese stringed instrument known as a guzheng. Also, Stephen Clair’s “Love Makes Us Weird”.

History of lyrics that aren’t lyrics.

Chuck Miller: When “The War of the Worlds” played in Albany

Crease and Desist and The Down Rule.

Are Oreos as Addictive as Cocaine?
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Jaquandor picked such great links last week, especially about writing, that you might as well visit them all.

GOOGLE ALERTS (me)

Dustbury: “Roger on the dodgy subject of avoiding conflict.”
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SamuraiFrog: “Roger recently did a post about his favorite albums of the 50s, in which he name-checked me, and I figured that I’d try and come up with a list for myself.” (I LOVE this post.)

GOOGLE ALERTS (not me)

Colonel Roger Green (National Disaster Medical Systems for the 5501st U. S. Army Hospital), son of the late Rev. Reubin Green and Daisy Green has been awarded the Legion of Merit for exceptionally meritorious service with the U.S. Army spanning more than 30 years.

Halloween 2013

Zombies vs. animals? The living dead wouldn’t stand a chance

via Aaron Paul’s Instagram

Each year, I just post seasonal links. I used to post them on the 31st, but then you wouldn’t have time to make use of those costume design ideas. Here’s a terrible joke I saw: A skeleton walks into a bar and says “I’d like a beer and a mop.”

Census: Halloween Facts for Features


IBISWorld: Halloween Sales to Grow a Slow 3.0 Percent in 2013

All month, there are Pagan Scares from Postmodern Barney

The A to Z of Stephen King Cinema, a comic of greatness

Listing Toward Forty is Listing Toward Halloween

Stephen R. Bissette’s WE ARE GOING TO EAT YOU!

The work of the devil…

11 Halloween Freebies: Where to Eat Free for Wearing Costumes

Transforming black-light Bride of Frankenstein makeup

Hauntbox: open-source hardware box for controlling your automated, electronic haunted house

This Family Wins All Costume Contests For Forever Continue reading “Halloween 2013”

P is for Pope Francis I

Pope Francis has launches reform of Vatican bureaucracy, with a cleanup of the Vatican bank.

As I have noted, I’m a Protestant with an odd fascination with Catholic popes. The accession, in March 2013, of Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina, 76, to become the 266th head of the world’s 1.2 billion Roman Catholics, especially when his predecessor, Benedict XVI is still alive, intrigued me.

I admit that I’ve enjoyed that he’s made some in the church hierarchy nervous, when he faults the church’s focus on gays and abortion, though that feels more like optics rather than actual change to me. He may be right, though, when he describes ideological ‘Christians’ as a ‘serious illness’ within the Church.

More interesting to me is his suggestion if it’s understood correctly in a secular press, that it’s OK not to believe in God if you have a clean conscience. For a different perspective on what the Pope may have meant, read Anthony Velez, who is studying for the (Protestant) ministry.

Dr. Anne Hendershott, Professor, Franciscan University of Steubenville had perhaps the best take on the new pontiff in the Huffington Post:
Many traditional Catholics are beginning to feel–as Time magazine columnist, Mary Eberstadt recently suggested–that they have been “thrown under the popemobile.” …

They would be wrong. While Pope Francis has said that “we cannot insist only ” on these culture war issues, most have not noticed that he also added that “the teachings of the Church are clear…and I am a son of the Church…but it is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time.”…

And, while traditionalists maintain that we still need to talk about them sometimes, an increasing number of progressives and traditionalists are beginning to acknowledge the possibility of finding a true common ground. If Pope Francis can help us reach that common ground, then his pontificate will truly be the “one we have been waiting for.”

A few years ago,…I titled a chapter in [my book Status Envy], “A Pope Away from a Perfect Life.” The chapter suggested that progressives have always believed that they were a “pope away” from a Catholic Church that would allow full reproductive rights, female ordination, and same-sex marriage.

It is likely that progressives–and traditionalists as well–will still have to wait a while for that perfect life. Besides, Christians know that we all remain “strangers in a strange land” here on earth. There will never be a “perfect life” here. But Pope Francis is simply asking that we all work together to make that life better for each other. Perhaps it is time to start.

Frankly, I’m more impressed that Pope Francis has launched the reform of Vatican bureaucracy, with a cleanup of the Vatican bank. In September, “the bank released its first-ever financial report (it is doing quite well, making $117 million last year, more than quadruple the 2011 figure. This year’s number is projected to be substantially lower partly because of the costs of the transparency campaign).” Now, to quote someone else, THIS is a change I can believe in.

This action, tied with his simpler lifestyle, more in keeping with Scripture than some German bishops have been living, gives me some hope that some positive permanent change might come from this papacy.


ABC Wednesday – Round 13

Bad linkage, says the mighty Google

Does this ever happen to you? It happens to me roughly every 15 days, where someone will e-mail me a letter like this:

Dear Sir or Madam,

I hope you’re doing well. I’m writing to you because my domain RedactedDomain.com was struck by an unnatural links penalty from Google. You might be aware of how Google can penalize a site if they think that the site is or was using dishonest link-building techniques.

Well, I’m not an expert on what Google determines to be a harmful link, so I can’t be sure, but I have reason to believe that Google views hyperlinks from your website OneOfRoger’sSites.com to RedactedDomain.com as a violation of Google’s webmaster’s guidelines. That’s why I would like to ask you to remove links from the following pages on your website to the following pages on my website:

SpecificLinkOnOneOfRoger’sSites.com linking to SpecificLinkOnRedactedDomain.com

I must admit that the first couple of times I got these, I ignored them. Then I thought, “It’s not that big a deal,” and deleted the link, occasionally even deleting the whole post – though not on this blog – because the link was the point of the post. But the last time, I go to the link and can’t find the offending part. What a bother.

What I DID find, though, is a BROKEN link. Generally, I don’t go back and check old links, because that’s all I would do. But if someone comments on an old post, or I discover a broken link on something previously published, I will replace it if I can, remove it if I can’t.

Fellow bloggers, what’s your policy on these matters?

NALT Christians

October is LGBT History Month

Last month, my friend Dan sent me a link to this nifty page about Christians Openly Supporting LGBT Community In ‘We’re Not All Like That’ Campaign. I wrote back, “This will appear on my blog within the week! Thanks; I had not seen this.” I was particularly taken by Fred Clark’s video, maybe because of how he self-identifies.

Obviously, I didn’t post anything, and frankly, it got lost in my e-mails. Then Arthur wrote about it, and I was going to let it go as a topic. Moreover, while I appreciate the sentiment of NALT, I never like things identified by what they are NOT. Quirky, I know.

But then I saw this story about a tea party leader and former Baptist pastor who is proposing to file a ‘class action lawsuit’ against ‘homosexuality.’ Oy.

So let me share with you a sermon by Nicole Garcia at the MLP National Conference at St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church in Tucson, AZ on Saturday, September 28, 2013, which addresses the topic of how some in the church view an inclusive faith.

Did you know that October is LGBT History Month? I did not until I saw a couple of huge displays in the fellowship hall of MY church.

I was telling this story recently: At my previous church, I was talking to one of the church leaders about the fact that we ought to have a discussion about gay rights; this would have been c 1990. She said, “We already did that.” I started attending in 1982 and joined in 1984, and I had no recollection of this. “Oh, we had somebody come in and talk with us in 1976.” Over the next several years, I brought it up, but the idea never gained any traction.

I’m happy to be in a church now without that ambiguity.
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From Newsmax:

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Monday withdrew legal opposition to gay marriage, making same-sex nuptials the law in the state.
The move makes New Jersey the 14th state in the nation to legalize gay marriage…
At City Hall in Newark, the state’s most populous city, Cory Booker, the two-term Democratic mayor who voters elected to the U.S. Senate last week, officiated for seven gay and two heterosexual couples who descended a set of curving steps just before midnight…
Booker, 44, who had refused to perform heterosexual weddings in his city of 277,700 residents because he objected to the exclusion of same-sex couples, called the ceremonies “one of the greatest privileges of my life.”

This dialogue from The West Wing is even better when you hear Martin Sheen say it.

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