Monday, October 31, 2005


Faith used to be a simple thing didn't it?
Deep and Simple.
But now adays, religion and religions seem to be adopting more and more the values and standards of commercial advertising.

This week your consumers guide presents A Consumer's Guide to Religion

Friday, October 28, 2005

I'm grounding myself from everything that is fun (including the computer) until this place I call home is cleaned up a bit

Despite a heritage of extreme cleansliness, I have very low stanards of housekeeping. Alas things have degrated to the point where even *I* see the need to clean.

So I'm spending this beautiful morning (my only day off this week) stuck inside doing laundry, doing the piles of dishes that have accumulated by the computer, scrubbing floors, and other not-much-fun tasks.

Why can't this place keep itself clean?

Evening Update - Most people, after taking the drastic measure of grounding themselves, would turn off the computer and start cleaning. Me??? I'm way too stubborn - instead I found seven million other things that "needed" to be done and only cleaned a little teeny tiny bit.

Luckily I had to check my work email - allowing for me to sneak in a little blog time when I wasn't looking (but if I catch myself online, I might get in trouble with me, so I'd better sign off!)

Update 2 - 3 days later it is close enough to done. (Not clean enough for a Grandma visit, but clean enough to allow myself to play on the computer). Horray for clean house!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005


What you've undertaken . . . isn't a state of perfection to be arrived at all of a sudden.
It's a walk, and a walk isn't static but ever changing.

From Christy by Catherine Marshall, p. 224

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Rosa Parks died

VE has many education programs, but the one I spend most of my time on is called WITNESS, which focuses on the contributions African Americans have made, and are making to the arts.

Last year we focused on Gordon Parks; this year's theme is Sojourner Truth, and there has been talk about making Rosa the theme for next year. And because VE doesn't do anything small ("Hey! Let's invite the Crown Prince to come to a concert!") I was hoping that Rosa would come and I'd get to me her or something.
Or not.

One of the people that works with me on WITNESS was a family friend to Rosa Parks.
He says that "Ms. Parks" used to visit his mother for afternoon tea - except they skipped the tea and went straight to the more intoxicating beverages! (Larry tells the story better than me - but it is a good story!)
The End

Monday, October 24, 2005

A million skillion years ago (February/March-ish??)
(when I was in the thick of thesis writing hell)
I got this idea in my brain that I should do NaNoWriMo

My thought process was, "By the time November comes around, I'll be done with this thesis thing, I'll have TONS of time to play and write and read and by golly I can write a novel too!"

So . . . there were many times I should have been working on the thesis when I was actually thinking about my novel.
Because novel writing is more fun than thesis writing.
And I told dear Miss Steph about it and somehow we decided that we were both going to do it. (What was I thinking????)

And then I somehow managed to finish the darn paper
And promptly forgot about NaNoWriMo (until the reminder email came a few weeks ago).

I don't have any solid ideas
I don't even have any weak ideas
Unless I write a John Cage-Style-Novel, there isn't a novel to be written

Defective Yeti almost came to my rescue with WriAShorStorWe (which is Write A Short Story Week). But I don't have any ideas for a short story either. (Ugh!)

The really horrible part in all of this is that Steph is seven times more busy than me, and she wants to do it. Steph is a trooper and I am a whimp! (But maybe she'll fall for the WriAShorStorWe and we'll both be off the hook - what do you think Steph?)

Apple Cinnamon herbal tea does not taste as good as it smells.
Just thought you'd like to know.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

My brother and his wife (finally) made the official announcement,
So I can stop holding this secret.
(It's a good one!)

Andy and Jaime are expecting!
Doc says Baby should arrive in late May/ early June!

Friday, October 21, 2005

From Today's WRiter's Almanac

It was on this day in 1879 the inventor Thomas Edison finally struck upon the idea for a workable electric light. People had been trying to make electric lights since the 1820s to replace kerosene and gas lamps, but they had chosen the wrong material for the filament: platinum. And Edison tried carbonized cotton thread, carbon filament which worked much better. He later improved the design with a tungsten filament that lasted longer and glowed brighter.

One of the effects of the invention of the electric light is that people sleep less than they once did. Before 1910, people slept an average of nine hours a night, and since then it's about seven and a half. Sleep researchers have shown in the laboratory that if people are deprived of electric light, they will go back to the nine hour a night schedule.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

go to google
Type in "Failure"
Click either Google Search or I'm Feeling Lucky.
Seriously. Do it.
Too funny!

Via Cranky Cindy


Peer Gynt is over, and I'm completely exhausted
But it's all worth it

Tuesday night I got to watch the Peer Gynt performance while sitting next to someone from the Norwegian government (Ambassdor??) He was abosolutely delightful and we had a good time joking with each other about nationalities!

Wednesday (aka Royal Performance Night) I stayed in the lobby and watched the Royal Entrouage enter and exit. I expected to see a lot more security - body guards at the doors and snipers in the balcony(after all, lottsa heads of state have been assisinated in theaters!) but it was almost informal. (So informal that I forgot to stand when His Royal Highness walked by the first time - oops!)

The performance was excellent! (Reviews here).
We were told that the VE chorus had better Norwegian Diction than Norwegian choirs! (And the whole cast did a marvelous job of telling the story through narration, acting, and music (truly magical!) The death of Ansse was amazing!

Alas, two late nights (plus 12 hour work days) have taken their toll and I'm worn out (in a good way). Once again let me say that I am privilaged and honored to work with VE and be a part of the incredible things they do.
I love my job!

Sunday, October 16, 2005


Jon invited me to dinner
I want to go to the ArtSpirit concert at orchestra hall.
There's a mini-lecture/concert thing in St. Paul that I want to go to.
And, after boycotting West Wing for more than a year, I'm suddenly intrigued again.
Plus, one of my VE artists has a show premiering tonight on pbs


I'm not really part of a Sunday Morning Muffin Club.
I'm just me, but I made muffins this morning!
And I think it'd be fun to have a muffing club, so I'm pretending!

So here's the Pretend Sunday Morning Muffin Club's muffin of the day
Courtsey of the Moosewood New Classics Cookbook (pg. 27)

Pumpkin Apple Chocolate Chip Muffins

Wet Ingredients
6 T. Butter
1/2 C. Sugar
1 egg
1/2 C. Milk
1/2 t. vanillia

Dry Ingredients
2 C. Flour
1t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1 t. cinnamon

Mix wet stuff together.
Mix dry stuff together in a different bowl.
Then just barely combine the wet and dry

Gently fold in 3/4 c. Pumpkin, 1 c. chopped apple, and 1/4 C. Chocolate chips.

Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes
(Makes 12 muffins -- which really isn't enough to share with a hungry mob of Sunday Morning Muffin Club members, so I'm kinda glad that my Muffin Club is pretend and not real. More for me!)

Wednesday, October 12, 2005


Much is going on, and my creative energy is gone.

I'm going to blame work (because VE has a performance next week, and The Crown Prince of Norway is coming to town just to see it, and having royality at a performance is a lot of work for the VE staff!)

But the sad sorry truth is that Princey Prince's visit has really not affected the day-to-day aspects of my job. (Other than me being really excited about it!)

FYI - if you ever plan to host a royal performance there is a heck of a lotta protocol, security, and formality stuff that you have to go through (Did you know that no one can sit infront of the prince -- so if he deicdes to sit in row 20, the 19 rows of seats infront of him have to be empty! Isn't that cool??? (Cool for the prince, not cool in the sense that we can't sell the 19 rows of seats).

We're presenting Peer Gynt (narrated in English, sung in Norwegian with English supertitles). I'm excited to see as a staged opera (I'm an instrumentalist, not a singer wherefore my Peer Gynt experience is limited to the Orchestral Suites. I wasn't even aware of a choral componet to Peer Gynt until VE announced that they were performing it. Who knew?)

I'll be back soon,
Definately after the Princey Boy festivities are over.

And if you're not doing anything next Wednesday, you should come to Saint Paul and hang out with me, the prince, and 1,800 of our closest opera buddies! (Don't be scared by the word "opera," if you've ever watched a cartoon, you're already very familar with the music. Besides, it'll be FUN!)

Sunday, October 09, 2005

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Camille Saint-Saëns.
In honor of his birthday, here are the last movements of Symphony Number 3 (a master piece!)
If you're in a hurry skip ahead to the 7 minute 30 seconds mark Turn Up Your Speakers (and the bass too!)


When I see an adult on a bicycle, I do not despair for the future of the human race
- H.G. Wells

Quote found on the Minnesota Bicycle and Pedestrain Alliance Website

Friday, October 07, 2005

Thursday, October 06, 2005


1. Holes was a rotten book. I expected to like it (because Louis Sachar has written lottsa great stuff). But Holes disapointed me.

2. I work in a building that is *very* multi-purpose. Besides housing the VE offices, it also houses a pre-school, a children's theater company, an art gallery, a church, a food-shelf, various performances, and at least four 12-step programs.

3.Those of you living in Iowa, or suburbia, or places with excellent mass transportation might wonder what is so special about a parking lot. But after you've paid $15 to park every day for a week, you'll know that **FREE PARKING** is a most excellent perk!

4. The building I work in, has a parking lot!!

5. As a kid, I rarely got to see movies in the theater. Dear 'ole Dad took the family to see Tron when it came out in theaters which did not go over well (but afterwards Andy, Dear 'ole Dad, and I ran on the lines in the parking lot and crashed into each other just like the cars in the movie - that was fun!)

4. The summer before 1st grade, my grandmother took me to see the movie Annie in the theater! And later that summer my mom and I found the soundtrack at KMart. I loved that movie and wore my tape player out listening to the music. (Except for the second to last song on Side A, Little Girls, which my mom didn't want me to listen to because it involved drinking. So I always fast forwarded through that song).

5. Last year the theater company that lives in the same building as VE did several performances Annie (it was fun to go downstairs and listen to the kids singing some of my favorite songs from so long ago!!)

6. Right now, the kids theater compnay is presenting . . . Holes. (see point 1. ugh). The book may be awful, but today i walked past the theater, and the set is AMAZING!

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

TONIGHT ON PBS Making Schools Work with Hedrick Smith. I haven't seen the program yet (obviously). But I'm going to go out on a limb and recomend that everyone watch it anyway. (At least all of the tax paying American Citizens - those of you that live outside the U.S. are exempt!!)

I can't change who I am: . . . an intellectual who can't simply take things on authority. (Because taking things on authority is the cardinal sin against one's self.) I'm not even sure where I'm going with this, but suffice it to say that the best place for me - and undoubtedly, the Church - is outside its confines. (Because the Church has been in this "sailing through the stormy seas of history" mentality so long that it has failed to realize that the shore is at hand and the water is calm.)
Full Post at Not for Sheep

Tuesday, October 04, 2005


If you are looking for something to make you laugh, check out The Harriet Miers blog. It makes me giggle!
via A Sweet Familar Dissonance formerly known as Reflections in d minor

AND . . . as long as we're on the Harriet Mier's topic, Bush's comment that she is not going to change in the next 20 years is very disturbing. If I were Harriet, I'd be very offended. (And if I were a senator, that would be a very worisome tidbit of information). Intelligent people change, they get new information which leads to new ideas, and that leads to changes in a person (and their philosophies). I'm glad that I've changed over the last 5 years, and I'd like to think that a supreme court justice would also continue to grow.

20 years from now she'll be the same person, with the same philosophy that she is today. She'll have more experience, she'll have been a judge, but nevertheless, her philosophy won't change. And that's important to me
-President Bush in today's press conference


I’m jealous of the people that work at banks - Their desks are always perfectly clean.
I know there is probably some kind of corporate rule requiring anyone with customer contact to have a non-cluttered desk.
And I know I would hate working in a place that required me to have a constantly clean desk.
But that doesn’t stop me from being jealous.
I wish that I could have a desk that was always sparkly clean.

Sunday, October 02, 2005


It was rather disturbing to discover that my site is the #16 result on yahoo search for quitting girl scout leading. (Thankfully, #16 is on the second page. And I don't show up at all in google. But STILL!)

I decided to explore more, and checked out the #1 result, which was a completely lovely essay from the Reno Gazzette Journal which I enjoyed (in spite of myself!)

* * *

I’ve heard that if you ask God a question before going to sleep, the answer will come to you in a dream. My question was, should I continue leading the Girl Scout troop, or should I quit? Since we dream symbolically, I was disappointed to wake up with no answer that was obvious to me.

That same morning, I picked up the book, “Little Altars Everywhere,” recommended by a friend. The first page started, “I used to be a Girl Scout until my leader quit . . .”

Well! There was the answer to my question. Clearly, God wanted me to continue.

There is only one way of getting out of something you don’t want to do, and that is to move, preferably to another state. So we moved to Reno, where there were no such things as Girl Scouts. OK, so that turned out not to be true. Luckily, though, Kaitlin decided she’d rather take ballet. My only obligation with that activity was to get her to the studio and write the check. I could do that.

“I don’t know why God wanted me to commit to another year of scouting. I never did enjoy it,” I told my sister, recently. She was familiar with the synchronicity I experienced after reading the first page of that book.

“Did it ever occur to you,” she said, “that the line ‘until my girl scout leader quit’ might have been a sign that you should have done that too?”

Full Essay